Who should the Greek people listen to when they vote in a referendum on their country’s international bailout: international leaders, or New York Times columnist Paul Krugman?
Here’s what is at stake: Greece’s Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras has announced a July 5 referendum on the nation’s creditors’ proposals to resolve its debt crisis, which has plagued the country for several years now. A “yes” vote would back the bailout measures by international creditors, while a “no” vote would likely lead Greece to exit the eurozone, making it the first nation to ditch the single currency and throwing the European nation into uncharted territory.
Noble Prize-winning Krugman says he would vote “no,” arguing two reasons for that case. Within the first point, Krugman acknowledges that leaving the euro is scary, but could result in an opportunity for the nation to rethink how it can tackle its woes and that a devaluation of its currency could pave the way for a recovery, as such a move has helped other nations many other times in the past. Secondly, the economist says a yes vote essentially is a move to replace the Greek government.
Unsurprisingly, Europe’s top leaders don’t agree with the “no” vote crowd. Jean-Claude Juncker, the president of the European Commission, has aimed to persuade Greeks that the budget cuts and policy overhauls their government has rejected are good for the nation. He says a “no” vote means the nation “is saying ‘no’ to Europe.”
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