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And the Weak Suffer What They Must?: Europe's Crisis and America's Economic Future by Yanis Varoufakis

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CHAPTER 3

TROUBLED PILGRIMS

On a dull autumnal afternoon, two men in suits exuding immense authority entered Aachen’s Cathedral. They were there to pay their respects to the remains of Charlemagne, the ninth century Frankish king who had briefly reunited the Roman Empire and whose spirit encapsulated, at least for traditionalist Central Europeans, the longing for a borderless Christian European realm: Mitteleuropa or Paneuropa, as they variably called it.

Standing above the Christian warrior’s grave, and next to his ancient throne, the two men sought to quell their considerable trepidation caused by what they had just done: commit their two countries, France and Germany, to bundle their money together. Earlier that day, on the morning of September ...

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