Athenian democracy brought a lot to the world. Now, in its economic tumult – perhaps default on its debt – when unemployment is raging and people are asked to tighten yet once again their belts after every place for a notch has been used, some people are beginning to ask: Well, why not just go the way of Argentina? It defaulted and it rebounded back. The stakes and issues are monumental. Leave it to the world’s first democracy to tackle the very framework of democracy.
What is at stake is so complex and now so late in the game, insofar as balancing any budget. But the Greeks have often lit the way. We still love their statues, their Mediterranean way of life, their sunshiny beaches, the old agoras, Socrates, Plato. Let’s find out more. Not that I know the right answer. But some are comparing their struggles to those that just took place in Egypt. Some say it has to do with the banking infrastructure.
Helen Titchen Beeth, on twitter, cites an article “This is not a fiscal crisis in Greece, but a financial crisis in the European banking sector.”
They might not even want to be rescued, one observer writes – pointing to the way of Argentina. But then what would happen to the world economy? to the Euro? So many puzzles. Saying it’s not because of “Greek laziness,” the Guardian’s Michael Burke notes that Greeks work the second-longest weekly hours of any workers in Europe and have the highest level of weekend hours worked.” Again, I don’t know the answer. Read this very interesting article about it “not [being] a financial crisis” if you want to find out more. And/or follow Helen Titchen Beeth, as I do.