The transfer-payments are the inconvenient truth that most European politicians shy away from actually telling their voters.
Admittedly, it's a concept that few of the paying countries' residents will find appealing.
But in a monetary union, this is what has to happen to level economic imbalances.
The problem is that the politicians failed to prepare their voters for it (for 20 years). Now would be the time to do, but it's a "bad time".
I'm not sure if we've hit the end of the road here, yet, because chances are there's a foul compromise that let's them kick the can down the road a couple of weeks or months more.
We have transfer-payments in Germany, too. But there are a few paying states and a lot of receiving states and the paying states are mostly fed-up with it, because in the past, the receiving states didn't put the money to much use, instead using it to finance short-term projects to appeal to voters...and we all speak the same language, have the same flag, the same national soccer team...
In the end, though, politicians are voted into power by people. So, you can aways say that people got what they voted for.