Scottish academic Niall Ferguson blasts Germany for austerity 'fetish'

Niall Ferguson looked rested and ready for action as we sat in the roof garden of Athens's Hotel Grande Bretagne on the day he was due to speak at the Delphi Economic Forum earlier this month. The previous evening, the distinguished Scottish historian had addressed an event at the Constantine Karamanlis Foundation, where he had defended the Trump administration's priorities and urged Europe to emulate the new American president in his commitment to spur economic growth and adopt a robust foreign policy.

I told him that I found his talk very interesting and disagreed with about 83 percent of it. He laughed and replied, with feigned disappointment, that the aim was for the audience to disagree with 100 percent of what he said.

However, the goal for Ferguson - who lives in the US and is a senior fellow at the Hoover Institution at Stanford - is not just to provoke: He was...

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