All Greek to Me

Daily Best of the Web   —   Posted on March 12, 2015

All Greek to Me

Greek Prime Minister Alex Tsipras

The following is an excerpt from OpinionJournal’s “Best of the Web” at WSJ written by the editor, James Taranto.

All Greek to Me
From an interview in Der Spiegel with Alex Tsipras, the new Greek prime minister:

Spiegel: But we’re still a bit confused. Does Greece want and need a third bailout package in June when you run out of money?

Tsipras: I wouldn’t call it a bailout.

Spiegel: What would you call it instead?

Tsipras: I would say that Greece has financing needs. We have massively consolidated our budget in recent years and now have primary surpluses instead of deficits. But we still can’t borrow money ourselves on the capital markets. To do so, we have to win back trust, become competitive and return to growth. Until that time, though, we have to finance ourselves in another way.

Spiegel: Which means, you need money from the Europeans.

Tsipras: Look, it’s not about philanthropy for Greece. It’s about joint responsibility and European solidarity. If Greece can’t service its debt, that also has an effect on our partners. As such, a safety net for Greece is necessary and we also have to return to the capital markets as rapidly as possible. But that can’t be combined with a program that has led to a situation of social distress; we need one that brings growth.

Or, to sum it up, Greece wants another bailout but would rather call it something else.

[Note: The post above is from the March 10 BOTW Archives.] For more “Best of the Web” click here and look for the “Best of the Web Today” link in the middle column below “Today’s Columnists.”