"France’s economy is roughly three-quarters the size of Germany’s. Persuading the Germans that the French are willing and able to pay their fair share...." This is incredible to me. Rogoff is supposedly one of the world's top economists, so how could he get something so basic so wrong. OF COURSE, France's economy is roughly 3/4 that of Germany's -- France's population is roughly 3/4 the population of Germany. France and Germany have virtually the same GDP per capita. But because France has a lot less inequality than Germany, the amount of wealth produced by the French economy is arguably better distributed to foster a broader prosperity. Rogoff, like most conventional economists, makes the mistake of once again using basic economic measurements about growth and size of economy to draw false conclusions about the overall quality of life. He ignores factors such as distribution. If you and I have the same wealth, but I spend mine more efficiently, I will have a better quality of life than you. Rogoff gets it wrong once again.
Steven Hill, a former policy director at the Center for Humane Technology, is the author of seven books, including Raw Deal: How the “Uber Economy” and Runaway Capitalism Are Screwing American Workers and The Startup Illusion: How the Internet Economy Threatens Our Welfare (in German).