El problema de Grecia no es la austeridad

CAMBRIDGE – Al mirar por una ventana, es fácil engañarse y ver más del reflejo de uno mismo que del mundo exterior. Esto parece suceder con los observadores estadounidenses que al mirar el caso de Grecia se ven influidos por el debate fiscal de su propio país.

Por ejemplo, para Joseph Stiglitz, la austeridad en Grecia es una cuestión de opción ideológica o de mal uso de la ciencia económica, al igual que en los Estados Unidos. Según este punto de vista, quienes favorecen la austeridad deben estar obsesionados con esta errada teoría, dado que existe una alternativa más suave y amable. ¿Por qué elegir la austeridad cuando partidos como Syriza en Grecia y Podemos en España ofrecen una vía sin dolor?

La pregunta obedece a una lamentable tendencia a confundir dos situaciones que son en extremo diferentes. La cuestión en Estados Unidos era si debía endeudarse un gobierno que podía obtener créditos con tasas de interés extremadamente bajas, en medio de una recesión. Por el contrario, Grecia acumuló una deuda fiscal y una deuda externa de gran envergadura en tiempos de auge, hasta que los mercados dijeron "basta" en 2009.

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