The EU-Italy kerfuffle over Italy’s effronting budget is getting serious.
The mandarins of Brussels on Tuesday issued an unprecedented demand that Italy rewrite its bad budget in line with Brussels’ bad fiscal principles.
As the WSJ predicts,
[t]he two sides will now descend into political and bureaucratic wrangling. The main risks are that Brussels imposes a fine of 0.2% of GDP or that Rome is forced to abandon the pro-growth flat tax.
There’s no need for this, though. Italy should simply refuse to debate the matter—their budget, for good or ill, is a national thing, a matter of sovereignty. Along those lines, Italy also should refuse to pay the Brussels vig.
Brussels is amply demonstrating the utility of Italy leaving the EU, even though the Italians aren’t, yet, ready to contemplate such a move. Here’s hoping they come to the realization sooner rather than later.