You know northern Italy is as rich per capita as southern Germany (the richest part of Germany), and both are comparable to Austria and Switzerland? The state of southern Italy is a long and sad history in which the US has no small responsibility (let's use the mafia to help restore order, what could go wrong?)
If you want some extremely high-tech, very specific tooling, you don't go to Germany, where they deal with simpler, larger scale things. You go around Bologna.
It is a huge myth that the latest crisis had anything to do with "being lazy" or "corrupt". It is a sad story of macroeconomic mismanagment, from the crisis countries before and the troika after.