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The Media

December 2012

The cycle repeats

by James Bowman

On austerity, ignoring reality, and the 2012 election.

Approximately twenty-four hours after Barack Obama was reelected to the presidency and 5,500 miles away from his campaign headquarters in Chicago, the Greek parliament narrowly (153 to 128) approved a new set of “austerity” measures, including raising the retirement age from sixty-five to sixty-seven, in order to qualify for yet another European—which is to say, German—bailout, this one worth about $40 billion. According to The New York Times, the Prime Minister of the moment, the Amherst- and Harvard-educated Antonis Samaras, promised that these would be “the last” of the budget cuts, and that future “adjustments” would come from rooting out what his American counterparts used to call “waste, fraud, and abuse.” Pull the other one, Antonis! The Times reporters Rachel Donadio and Liz Alderman dryly noted that he is “the third prime minister to promise the ‘last cuts&rsq ...

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James Bowman is the author of Honor: A History (Encounter Books).

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This article originally appeared in The New Criterion, Volume 31 December 2012, on page 64

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