Given the near collapse of Greece's economy thanks to its debt crisis, many Americans are worried that with our government debt of $18 trillion, could lead us to the same fate.
But worry not, says Stephen Moore, distinguished visiting fellow at The Heritage Foundation.
"I’m asked every day if America is the next Greece or Detroit or Puerto Rico, and the answer is an unequivocal no," he writes in The Washington Times
"The U.S. economy, especially the private sector, is structurally very healthy. That wasn’t the case on the eve of the great financial meltdown of 2008 when American companies and households were leveraged up to their eyebrows."
The difference now is that corporate and household finances are rebounding, while government finances are sliding. "At a time when private-sector debt burdens have flattened out and even fallen, the government debt has soared frighteningly," Moore explains.
Ultimately, the private sector should borrow more, and the government less, he says.
Peter Peterson, the iconic former Commerce Secretary and co-founder of Blackstone Group, is concerned about our government debt too in light of Greece.
Of course we are in a much stronger financial and economic position than the beleaguered European nation, he acknowledges. "Nonetheless, there are important lessons to be learned about the benefits of long-term planning and maintaining fiscal health and flexibility," he writes in USA Today
"Without question, the United States remains on a fiscal path that is unsustainable and dangerous by any international standard."
Meanwhile, Nobel laureate economist Joseph Stiglitz says Greece's European creditors must loosen the conditions for another bailout to avoid sending the beleaguered economy into collapse.
The austerity requirements for Greece imposed by European governments, the European Central Bank and the IMF have led so far to a 25 percent plunge in Greek GDP and a jump in the unemployment rate to 28 percent, he writes in USA Today
"I don't believe Europe's leaders were seeking to punish Greece," he says. "They were just using bad models—evidenced by the enormous gap between what they thought would happen and what did happen. Europe and the IMF predicted a fairly quick turnaround. The reality was deepening recession."
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