There are many aspects of the European Union that I dislike but I have never quite shared the view that the euro is due to collapse at some point, even if one or two member nations revert to domestic currencies, which at this stage looks highly unlikely barring an Asian-style collapse. Of course, I certainly think that imposing a single, monopoly currency on widely diverging economies at different points of the economic cycle is fraught with danger but that, remember, applies to single political jurisdictions like Britain or the US as well as blocks of different countries, which is why I am interested in the idea of free banking and multiple currency systems within a single polity. People who scoff at this idea have to argue why, if this is so weird, you can operate in a world with different forms of computer software, etc. Here is another interesting article on the idea.
Of course, I know that the prime reason for objecting to the euro for many people is not the economics anyway, but its place in the political agenda of those who wish to forge a European single state, relegating the separate nations to the status of provinces. But if people imagine that the economics of the euro-zone are going to blow the whole thing apart, they may have to wait a long time. A couple or more years ago, remember, it was argued – with a lot of convincing detail – that the euro would fall apart and countries like Italy would be forced to quit. That has not happened. The Daily and Sunday Telegraphs, with columnists like Evans Ambrose Pritchard and Liam Halligan, have argued several times about the euro’s demise. Halligan is arguing this again. Well, try as I might, it is quite hard to imagine at the moment that the euro is about to fall to pieces. Try telling that to anyone who has bought euros with sterling or dollars lately. We might soon be reaching the point where, to borrow from Mark Twain, the comment is that rumours of the euro’s death have been much exaggerated.