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Greece's Crisis and Contagion Fears

Greece goes broke, and fear rises that a contagion could spread. We look at the Greek debt crisis and global response.

Unemployed school teachers chant slogans at an anti-government demonstration outside the Greek Parliament in Athens, Tuesday, April 27, 2010. Greece's debt crisis intensified Tuesday as its credit rating was cut to junk status. (AP)

A Greek tragedy came to a head this week in Europe, with a financial contagion effect that could plow into the U.S. economy – the global economy.

It’s a terrible cautionary tale of debt run amuck. Greece has spent and borrowed until no one will lend it money anymore.

Now comes bail-out – they hope – and austerity, for sure. Deep, deep cuts in employment, pay, pensions, government services – everything – are coming.

The piper will be paid. Spain could be next. The U.K. And what about the U.S.?

This Hour, On Point:  A meltdown in little Greece, and the world on edge.

Guests:

John Psaropoulos, Athens correspondent for NPR and founder of the blog The New Athenian. He’s former editor-in-chief of the Athens News.

Scheherazade Rehman, professor of international finance at George Washington University, where she serves as director of the European Union Research Center.

Zanny Minton Beddoes, economics editor for The Economist.

Maya MacGuineas, director of the New American Foundation’s Fiscal Policy Program and president of the Committee for a Responsible Federal Budget. She served as a Social Security advisor to the McCain 2000 campaign.

More:

Watch New York University economist Nouriel Roubini discuss Greece’s problems, on Bloomberg Television. He says the current European Union/IMF rescue plans are “not going to work” and that Greece’s problems “are not solvable” with that approach:

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