Dispatches from the continent

DISPATCHES FROM THE CONTINENT…. This week, the Washington Monthly launched a fun little project called, “How’s Europe Doing? Dispatches from the continent.” It will feature posts from Steven Hill as he reports his five-week speaking tour of Europe — visiting 12 countries and 20 cities.

Here’s an overview published yesterday by Hill:

I just arrived in Budapest, Hungary as the first stop in a five-week speaking tour in Europe that will take me through 12 different countries and 20 cities, including most of Western Europe and ending in Athens and Istanbul. During this tour, I will give presentations at the European Commission (which, for those who don’t know, is like President Obama’s cabinet for the European Union), as well as to a host of think tanks, policy institutes and NGOs in Europe. I also have been invited to speak to some local chapters of Democrats Abroad, which is the international wing of the Democratic Party. In Vienna I will observe the Austrian national election which is occurring on October 10. I will arrive in Stockholm just after the Swedish national election, in which an anti-immigration party is predicted to win a few legislative seats for the first time in Sweden’s history. And I will spend considerable time in Greece, where the recent sovereign debt crisis threatened not only Greece but the other so-called PIIGS countries (Portugal, Ireland, Italy and Spain), as well as the euro zone itself.

During my peregrinations across the European continent, I will be assessing the impact of the economic crisis, including what the political elites are saying, as well as what the average person is experiencing. Is the highly vaunted European social capitalism, which provides so well for families and workers, in danger of erosion? The varied venues in which I will travel and speak will put me in contact with people in many different countries, and should be a good vantage point for hearing a range of viewpoints.

And fortunately for us, Hill will be sharing those viewpoints at our new site. Take a look.