This is rich: US conservatives are normally scornful of Europe and its "socialist" policies. Suddenly, however, they have found new love for Angela Merkel and her colleagues in Europe since they oppose the economic stimulus package advanced by the Obama administration:
"We're in such a bad situation in this nation right now… that [the Europeans] actually look good," Gregg said.
The immediate response of Senator Bernie Sanders - the only self-described democratic socialist in the US Senate - was brilliant:
"I'm glad to hear that my neighbor from New Hampshire is suddenly interested in Europe," he said. "And maybe we can take a hard look at the fact that virtually every European country has a national health-care program guaranteeing health care to all of their people, spending substantially less per capita than we do in this country -- maybe we can add that. And maybe we can look at the fact that while we have 18 percent of our kids living in poverty, our European friends in some cases have 3 or 4 percent of their children living in poverty. And maybe while our families have to spend $40,000 a year to send our kids to college, they do it virtually free. So I like the idea of opening up the discussion about the pros and cons of Europe, but it is broader than my friend from New Hampshire is talking about."
And here's another reason to admire Europe: a court in Spain is launching an investigation into top officials of the Bush administration for their role in the torture of detainees at Guantanamo Bay and elsewhere - something that US lawmakers have not done even though the Bush torture policy was clearly illegal.
A high-level Spanish court has taken the first steps toward opening a criminal investigation against six former Bush administration officials, including former attorney general Alberto R. Gonzales, on whether they violated international law by providing a legalistic framework to justify the use of torture of prisoners at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, an official close to the case said.
Article in German: Früheren US-Beamten droht Prozess wegen Folter.