Austerity Riots – A Glimpse Of America’s Future?
Are the austerity protests and riots happening in Greece right now a glimpse of America’s future? The truth is that both nations are absolutely drowning in debt. It is just that the “day of reckoning” has already arrived for Greece but it has not arrived for the United States yet. Yes, there are some important differences between the situation in Greece and the situation in the U.S., but there are also some important similarities. Budget cuts and other austerity measures are being promoted by the political leaders of both countries. Greek citizens have reacted very negatively to the economic austerity programs that have been implemented in that nation. As budget cuts on the federal, state and local levels in the United States start to really become painful, will we eventually see the same kind of austerity riots in this country that we are currently seeing in Greece?
There is a price to pay for living way, way beyond your means for decades. The citizens of Greece are now feeling that economic pain. In the United States, the pain of austerity is not being felt that severely yet.
So exactly what are austerity measures? Well, in Greece they include tax increases, budget cuts and “privatization measures”. The Greek government is swamped under an unpayable debt load and without international assistance the Greek government will default.
But all of that “international assistance” comes with strings. The EU and the IMF are insisting on the implementation of very strict austerity measures, and the Greek people are not thrilled about this.
Greek Prime Minister George Papandreou is telling the Greek people that it is their patriotic duty to accept these austerity measures, but most of the Greek population is not buying it.