The New York Times reported in “I.M.F. Shifts Its Approach to Bailouts” that,
“ The International Monetary Fund, convinced that Europe erred in forcing debtor countries like Greece and Portugal to bear nearly all the pain of recovery on their own, is pushing hard for a plan that would impose upfront losses on bondholders the next time a country in the euro area requests a bailout.”
First, what does the IMF mean by the word “countries” in the phrase, “forcing debtor countries like Greece and Portugal to bear nearly all of the pain of recovery on their own”?
It means that the people of Greece and the people of Portugal are the only ones being forced to suffer the costs associated with repaying the relevant debts. The IMF implies that the words “country” and “people” are synonymous and the “people” are responsible for their “countries’” debts.
But is such implication accurate, fair or even reasonable in relation to national debts?
Who rang up the original debt? The “country” (the “people”) of Greece? Or was it the debt incurred by the government of the country of Greece? Are the “people” and their “government” one-in-the-same?