Wallets out, everybody
Little time for blogging this weekend, so my comments on this will be brief.
British taxpayers risk being caught up in a £1.75trillion deal aimed at saving the euro by allowing Greece to default on its massive debts.
The eurozone deal, being brokered by the G20 group of nations, would seek to “ring fence” the crisis around Greece, Portugal and Ireland – preventing it from spreading to major EU economies such as Italy and Spain.
It would involve the bailing out those European banks – mostly French – most at risk from their massive lendings to tottering economies.
Greece, crucially, would be able to default on at least some of its more than £300billion debts but remain inside the eurozone. The Greek government’s private creditors would bear most of the increased costs.
At this stage, a new bail-out programme would be devised for Greece – with cash coming at least in part from the International Monetary Fund, in which Britain holds a 4.5 per cent stake.
This could mean British taxpayers paying out more than the £1billion they are already slated to have to contribute under the terms of the first Greek bailout fund.
I suspect ‘could’ in this context means ‘will’. How can Britain avoid it when the IMF is involved? And so I’ll make my usual comment in this kind of situation:
It’s not your fucking money!
And add only that actually allowing a default isn’t a bad thought but this idea is still, to use Douglas Carswell’s phrase, bailing water into a sinking boat. The idea that a bail out involves adding more of the problem is just gold standard professional window licking.