Europe and the Greek disease

Kathimerini English - - Front Page -

Key Euro­pean gov­ern­ments are clearly try­ing to help Greece avoid bank­ruptcy. These coun­tries are not mo­ti­vated by some kind of ro­man­tic phil­hel­lenism, but rather by the need to pro­tect their own economies against the un­known and un­pre­dictable con­se­quences of a Greek de­fault. Many mem­bers of Greece’s po­lit­i­cal class be­lieve that the prospect of bank­ruptcy can be used to black­mail the coun­try’s in­ter­na­tional len­ders or put pres­sure on them by vi­o­lat­ing the agree­ments it has made with them. This, of course, is a very dan­ger­ous game. Our pop­ulist politi­cians fail to re­al­ize the dam­age done by the stereo­type of an in­ept and failed state which is merely be­ing kept alive to avoid con­tam­i­nat­ing the other mem­bers of the Euro­pean Union. More­over, it can­not be ruled out that Greece’s Euro­pean peers will at some point reach the end of their tether re­gard­ing our tac­tics, or in fact for­tify them­selves against the threat of Greece’s own col­lapse.

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