What Mrs Merkel is doing, quite appropriately, is defending the integrity of her national constitution, the economic principles on which her country’s economic success has been built, and the interests of her own electorate.

As the leader of a democratic state, what else should she be expected to do? Would Mr Cameron, who is busily assuring us that he will always put the needs of this country first, be chivvied into throwing over the interests of his own citizens for the sake of another national population that has come to grief largely as a consequence of its own misjudgments? Last week, he called for the “pooling [of] fiscal sovereignty” among the eurozone countries. Would he be willing to give up his Government’s right to determine its own tax and spending policy?

And would Mr Obama reverse the fundamental principles of the United States Constitution for the sake of a short-term solution to a global economic problem? (Well, actually, maybe he would. Given his egomaniacal tendency to regard the Supreme Court as a turbulent nuisance when it obstructs his plans, he might not be the best exemplar of constitutional probity.)