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To many Dutchmen, an Italian divorce sounds just fine

As we discuss in our latest podcast episode, Italy is a microcosm of the European Union. The north is one of Europe’s most prosperous regions, a crossroads of trade and industry. The south is a perennial periphery, dogged by persistent poverty and structurally high unemployment. In the north, people ask why they should bail out their southern brethren. Indeed, the populist Lega, one of the country’s most powerful political parties, was originally the Lega Nord, a party that preached secession and practiced the pursuit of autonomy for northern regions. The south holds grudges of its own, caricaturing northern industry as rapacious and exploitative. Sound familiar? It will if you’ve followed the politics of the European Union since 2008. 

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