"We need Greece," Maurice Minot, a Frankfurt taxi driver, told me, swerving in excitement. "We need Spain, we need Italy. It's the dream for Europeans, for more than a hundred years."
For Minot, as for many Germans on both sides of the debate, the question of bailouts goes beyond narrow self interest. It gets at what it means to be German, and what it means to be European.
Klaus Frankenberger, an editor at the newspaper Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung, points to the painful labor reforms Germany went through a few years ago.