The Greek Election: Finally Some Democratized Economics
There is an election this Sunday in Greece, and after years of government bailouts of risk-taking banks, shifting the debt to tax-payers, the people have said 'enough'. The bankers, bond holders and even political elite are no longer in charge. At least not in Greece.
The people are.
It may be messy, and Greece may indeed leave the Euro with all the ensuing consequences, but no longer will the economic will of far flung countries and bankers have a say in the social policy of Greece.
Austerity only hurts people, it doesn't put them back to work, which is what is needed in Greece (and else where). I am not saying defaulting on debt is a good idea, but what is easily lost when summits are called, and loan terms agreed on, is the real pain that "austerity" causes.
As with so many economic terms, "Austerity" sounds benign ("downsizing" anyone?), but it represents job loss, hunger and real world suffering to millions of people. Suicides, HIV, depression are all on the increase in Greece. And those are the horrible short term consequences, what about the long-term societal ones?
Faced with these realities, the Greek people recently were not exactly clear in their will of what to do, but I suspect come Sunday there will be some 'clarity', among other things. Yes, democracy doesn't necessarily lead to good outcomes, and an exit will hurt the Greek people. But austerity already is, and will continue to.
The Greeks will take control of their destiny on Sunday and the bankers can sit back and watch from the sidelines.