On the events in Europe this past week, I'm going to quote Marcus Aurelias (most often cited in popular culture by Hannibal Lecter):
"Of each particular thing ask: what is it in itself? What is its nature? What does he do, this man you seek?"
The first principle of any socialist, whatever else the circumstances, is that a socialists pretends things. They pretend that one person's problems can be solved by passing a law restricting another person. Or they pretend that a shortage today can be solved by plans for abundance tomorrow. Or they pretend that the multitudes can dine on just a few loaves and fishes - even without a miracle.
Mostly they pretend that 2+2 = 5 - or whatever their politics requires it to. Maybe the socialist leader believes what he's pretending which would make him a neophyte, or maybe he doesn't, which would make him a cynic. But either way, a Socialist's plans are always to pretend. That is his/her nature.
The election results in Europe are actually kind of complicated - as it always is in a multi-party system. But that does not change what the Socialists are. And since everything in Europe still depends on Germany, you can think of this as Ms. Merkel (and Euro-cratic view that she represents) having some defiant and poorly behaved new pets that she needs to train. When you're teaching a dog - sometimes you give it a treat and sometimes you whack it on the nose with a newspaper. Ms. Merkel and the Eurocrats will have to do both before it's over.
But none of this changes my long term view. In Europe they will do WHATEVER is necessary to preserve the power structure as is. Departing the euro isn't an option for any country that wants to continue to sell its debt in the public markets. To do so is an admission that the game is over, and local anarchy will be the only result. The only thing supporting the periphey's debt now is the implied Credit derivative that they're being issued by the ECB. Take that away, and no one will be willing take a chance on them.
So the music will continue, and dance will go on - albeit with different dancers. We will now all pretend things that we didn't pretend before. All sorts of 'villains' will be blamed, and all sorts of 'saviors' will emerge - new punitive laws in hand - in an effort to finally punish the 'villains' who have been ruining things in Europe for the noble masses. And in my opinion, nothing meaningful will change, because pretending won't change it. And that's all a socialist really knows how to do.