Until recently, the euro seemed destined to encompass all of Europe. No longer. None of the remaining outsider European countries seems likely to embrace the common currency. Seven Eastern European countries that recently joined the European Union (Bulgaria, the Czech Republic, Hungary, Latvia, Lithuania, Poland, and Romania) have announced their intention to revisit their obligations to adopt the euro.
Two non-euro members of the European Union, the United Kingdom and Denmark, have explicit opt-out provisions from the common currency, and popular opinion has recently turned strongly against euro membership. In Sweden, which lacks a formal opt-out provision (but has cleverly refused to fulfill one of the requirements for membership), a November poll on whether to join the euro was overwhelmingly negative: 80 percent no, 11 percent yes.
In light of the political response to the ongoing fiscal and currency crisis—which is leaning strongly toward a centralized political entity that will probably be even more unpopular than the common currency—I suggest that it would be better to reverse course and eliminate the euro.