North And South
Attitudes like this aren't helping the EU's case:
Dijsselbloem, who chairs meetings of the eurozone’s 19 finance ministers, has been under fire from countries in southern Europe over an interview last month with German paper Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung in which he said: “I cannot spend all my money on liquor and women and then ask for your support.”And the fact that he wasn't invited to the parties?
The comment stoked widespread criticism across southern Europe as it was seen as a direct reference to them requiring state bailouts from primarily richer countries in northern Europe. Many politicians, including Portuguese Prime Minister Antonio Costa, called for Dijsselbloem’s resignation.
Dijsselbloem said tiredness may have played a part in his comments, which came three days after Dutch national elections in which his Labor Party slumped to a large loss of seats in Parliament’s lower house.
Dijsselbloem added that his comment “was my way of expressing that solidarity is not charity,” but denied that it was aimed specifically at southern European nations.
“The anger at the interview is anger at eight years of crisis policy,” Dijsselbloem said.