Is Europe Doomed?

| Tue Feb. 14, 2006 4:25 PM EST

Cato Unbound has an interesting debate going on right now over the future of Europe. Theodore Dalrymple asks, "Is 'Old Europe' Doomed?" and argues that at the very least the continent is "sleepwalking to further relative decline," probably, in part because too much left-style regulation is strangling the economy, compared with the "success" of neoliberalism here in the United States. Charles Kupchan takes a contrarian view, noting that the EU is about as wealthy as the United States (and that includes a number of Eastern European countries that are still developing). Anne Applebaum thinks Dalrymple may have a point.

It's an interesting debate, but it's not clear that Europe's really doing so much worse than the United States in the usual economic terms. (Dalyrmple also makes various cultural arguments that I'll set aside here.) Here, for instance, is economist Robert Pozen's take on those perennial Europe-U.S. comparisons:

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