The Maastricht Treaty stipulated that no member government could run a deficit of more than 3 percent in any one year. The French, in order to abide by the contract, were the first to institute phony bookkeeping. We will not pay our pension obligations this year, we will pay them next year, they decided. This year things will look good, next year things will look worse, but next year is next year and we are not going to worry about that. It is the Scarlett O'Hara theory of finance: "After all ... tomorrow is another day." The move was seen as pretty outrageous. Even the Italians, who had been using phony bookkeeping for decades - for centuries, in fact - were shocked. After pulling themselves up off the floor, they proceeded to emulate the French, going with their own time-honored recipe for cooking the books.
A versão de Jim Rogers para a adequação de alguns países às regras do Tratado de Maastricht. Está na biografia dele, que já citei aqui.