For the managers of social democracy, the attempt to resist these cutbacks and gross transfers of wealth to the private sector was hopelessly utopian. Even if they felt the depth and speed of austerity driven by Angela Merkel and conservative technocrats was too severe, there was no working alternative model of growth on the horizon. And even if the private sector was sluggish and investment pitifully low, there was no question of any other sector leading a new round of growth. Certainly, any government which involved the state in taking over the means of investment and attempting to create new growth through public works would face the risk of stiff resistance from business, banks, civil servants, media, and of course European institutions. The legality and constitutionality of their actions could be challenged, and they might face continual crises and challenges from within. They would risk even lower rates of investment, downgrading by the ratings agencies such that borrowing would become impossible, and speculative attacks. It should not be so surprising, therefore, if we repeatedly find social democratic leaders, egged on by establishment media, capitulating to the agenda of their opponents with an air of heroic self-sacrifice.