None of us should feel smug about the financial crisis affecting the Western world, but, writing in National Review, Dalrymple makes the case for Ireland as the worst offender:
Thanks to the banking crisis, the budget deficit this year will be 32 percent of GDP, probably a peacetime record for any state. The underlying problem of the “normal” government deficit, as well as private indebtedness, contracted with rising house prices as collateral, is even worse: An average Irish household of four is now committed to paying interest on debts of something like $800,000 before it consumes so much as a potato. It is not difficult to see what will happen if interest rates rise. In any case, Irish government borrowing is even now three times as costly in interest rates as German.
Read it here (payment required)