Alexander Hamilton und die Eurozone

PRINCETON – Europas Schuldenkrise hat das Interesse der Europäer an Präzedenzfällen der amerikanischen Finanzpolitik auf Bundesebene geweckt. Vielen gilt Alexander Hamilton als Held seiner Zeit. Vielleicht sollte sein Gesicht eines Tages auch den 10-Euro-Schein zieren.

Für europäische Staaten, die unter untragbaren Schuldenlasten ächzen, wirkt insbesondere ein 1790 von Hamilton ausgehandeltes Gesetz wie ein verlockendes Modell, das es der neuen Bundesregierung erlaubte, die hohe Verschuldung der Bundesstaaten zu übernehmen. Als Thomas Sargent vergangenes Jahr mit dem Wirtschaftsnobelpreis ausgezeichnet wurde, führte er dieses Vorgehen in seiner Dankesrede als Präzedenzfall an.

Anders als James Madison und Thomas Jefferson setzte sich Hamilton dafür ein, dass die Schulden, die von den Einzelstaaten während des Unabhängigkeitskrieges angehäuft worden waren, vom Bund übernommen werden sollten. Seine Argumentation fußte auf zwei Aspekten, einem praktischen und einem philosophischen.

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