"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.
Oh please. While I think the imprisonment of Tymoshenko is politically motivated and wrong, and reveals the ugly face of the current regime ruling Ukraine, let's face it – Tymoshenko was no angel. She seemed to be yet another inept, egomaniacal kleptocrat produced by that part of the world on a fairly regular basis. If she had been a competent elected official, Yanukovych would never have won the last election, so she can take her share of blame for the current troubles. I'm sorry, but comparing herself to Mandela is a bit too much. I hope she gets out of prison soon, but she is not to be trusted.
Open societies have not always needed defending in the determined way that they do today. But the tide turned against them after the 2008 global financial crisis, and, more than a decade later, the threat posed by authoritarian nationalism continues to rise.