A "New Deal" for Europe's youth? Er...

The youth unemployment situation across much of Europe is bleak, to say the least; young people in Greece are unemployed at a rate that just shot past 60 percent, while more than half of Spain’s young people are jobless and more than 40 percent are jobless in both Ireland and Portugal. These kinds of numbers mean that young people are being increasingly thwarted in trying to start their careers and develop the skills they’ll need to survive and thrive for the rest of their lives, which in turn stunts the European economies’ prospects for getting back to a healthy long-term outlook. It’s quickly turning into a vicious and self-perpetuating cycle, and the problem has not gone unnoticed by Europe’s oh-so-august financial ministers — who have lately been cooking up a plan to try and get young people back in the game.

The “New Deal for Europe” will free up EU resources to pay for language courses and fund jobseekers’ flights around the continent in search of work. …

Carsten Brzeski, senior economist at ING Group in Brussels, said: “Merkel and Schaeuble know very well that the future of the euro is not just decided in Brussels or Berlin, but on the streets of Madrid, Athens and so on.”

“High youth unemployment combined with hatred for Germany can turn into populism and nationalism quite quickly and, in the extreme case, lead to an end of the currency union.”

Under the plans, finance from the European Investment Bank will be made available to encourage job creation at small and medium sized businesses. …

Said German Chancellor Merkel on the matter:

German Chancellor Angela Merkel said the tally of unemployed youth in Europe has climbed to an “unimaginable” level that requires urgent action, including spending trade bloc cash effectively to create jobs.

Addressing a congress of her Christian Democrats in the city of Muenster, Merkel said Germany is co-leading efforts with partners to assess how best to spend 6 billion euros ($7.7 billion) in European Union allocations after youth unemployment grew more than 50 percent in several countries.

So… the solution to a bloc of countries who for years have been trying to centrally plan and hitch together their economies while individually ramping up public spending to cataclysmically irresponsible levels and subsequently inflicting deed-seated damage on said economies… really just sounds like still more central planning and public spending. Awesome.

This doesn’t sound much different than what President Obama is constantly proposing with his new quick-fix spending ideas and government initiatives; ‘keeping student loans interest rates artificially low’ and ‘more money for public-sector jobs’ and whatnot all sound like lovely temporary band-aids to keep young people appeased, but they are all approaches that attempt to mask the symptoms instead of the fixing the disease — and that disease too-big governments that do too much taxing, spending, and regulating to allow free-market opportunities to flourish.