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Eurozone Crisis

Greece is on the brink of meltdown due to spiraling debt, and the deficit crisis is continentally contagious. Last year, the International Monetary Fund bailed out Greece to the tune of 110 billion euros, contingent on the implementation of strict austerity measures. On the heels of this dramatic action came bailout packages for Ireland and Portugal. And the Greek tragedy is far from over as the debate over whether to accept debt-forgiveness conditions upended the government in Athens. Furthermore, other debt-laden European nations risk going under.

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Greece's Prime Minister and leader of ruling conservative New Democracy party Antonis Samaras addresses his parliamentary group in Athens December 11, 2014. Greece will hold snap general elections in January if parliament fails to elect a president this month, Prime Minister Antonis Samaras said on Thursday as he called on all lawmakers to avert a national crisis by supporting his candidate for head of state. Reuters

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One has to hope that President Antonis Samaras secures a super-majority in the upcoming rounds of parliamentary voting. Otherwise, we should brace ourselves for the real potential of Greece plunging into economic turmoil and restarting the European sovereign debt crisis.

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Today’s decision by the Greek government to present a budget for 2015 that is in open defiance of the wishes of its European Union and IMF paymasters is of singular importance.

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The rise of the far-left political party Syriza in Greece raises doubts as to whether the country will remain a member of the eurozone.

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The EZ has a core NGDP problem, meaning debt levels become unsustainable even at moderate interest rate levels given such persistently anemic growth.

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In a letter to the Financial Times, Desmond Lachman argues that large-scale fiscal tightening in Europe is a sure recipe for another recession.

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AEI’s Desmond Lachman has some unsettling analysis on Europe’s political and economic landscape.

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If European policymakers continue to insist on fiscal austerity and structural reform, a triple-dip recession and greater political fragmentation are all but inevitable.

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If European policymakers delay changing policy course much longer, they might find a European political economy that is beyond the point of return.

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The international community must have a realistic and transparent discussion of how to distribute the costs of supporting Ukraine, which are highly likely to be much greater than the current IMF estimate.

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Russia and the West have fundamentally different views on Russia’s legimitate interest in Ukraine. The resulting escalating sanctions are now threatening economic growth for all of Europe.

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