An overly generous welfare state combined with demographic decline. There’s a recipe for national collapse.
European economic analysts are paying too much attention to the United Kingdom and too little attention to Italy.
Yes, the Brexit decision is important, and the United Kingdom is the world’s 5th-largest economy so it merits attention to see if there are any speed bumps as it escapes from the slowly sinking ship otherwise known as the European Union.
But one of the other passengers on that doomed ship is Italy, the world’s 8th-largest economy. And if the UK merits attention because of uncertainty on its way to a brighter future, then Italy should be getting five-alarm focus for its festering economic crisis as it descends into chaos.
Part of that crisis is quasi-permanent stagnation, as illustrated by this map showing changes in per-capita economic output since 1995.
To state that Italy is the slow student in the class is an understatement. There’s been a two-decade period with…
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