Dealing with Private Debt Distress in the Wake of the European Financial Crisis A Review of the Economics and Legal Toolbox

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New IMF WP here.

8 Responses to “Dealing with Private Debt Distress in the Wake of the European Financial Crisis A Review of the Economics and Legal Toolbox”

  1. Gavin Kostick Says:

    “in the wake of”?

  2. Kevin Donoghue Says:

    Gavin, the wake is where you’re liable to drown if you fall overboard.

  3. grumpy Says:


    Yes, many casual readers, not versed in the technical niceties of econohydrodynamics would not realise that the wake starts at the the forward-most point that the flow over a ship’s hull becomes turbulent. Usually this is not very far from the front.

    So once things have gone turbulent, if your country goes overboard from the good ship ‘Financial Crisis’, it will likely be bobbing about in the wake while it steams past. Watch out for the propellers, which can lead to the country being split into several tranches – some of which may not float.

  4. David O'Donnell Says:

    Picture of the day

    Picture This: Despair in Damascus

  5. Mickey Hickey Says:

    Some insight into why we view debt the way we do.
    Interview with Graeber of 5000 Years of Debt fame, Boston Review.

    “The instinct of the people now in power is to figure out how to change things as little as possible.”

  6. Mickey Hickey Says:

    An in depth view of government and social control and how it as evolved is mentioned in the links above.

    Foucault seems to have had a very good handle on the issues in his book The History of Sexuality. The link is to University of Minnesota on Foucault.
    This is an excerpt from the critical comment.

    Right of Death and Power Over Life
    Foucault begins by historicizing the right to decide life and death as one of the characteristic privileges of the sovereign power, and then traces a shift from “the old power of death that symbolized sovereign power” (139) to “the administration of bodies and calculated management of life” (140). Foucault summarizes this shift when he writes “the ancient right to take life or let live was replaced by a power to foster life or disallow it to the point of death” (138).
    Starting in the 17th century, Foucault argues that the power over life evolved in two basic forms, which are not antithetical: an anatomo-politics of the human body (the body as a machine) and a bio-politics of the population (regulatory controls on the body) (139). Anatomo-and bio-politics of power created techniques of power that were present at every level of the social body and used by diverse institutions.
    Foucault goes on to distinguish “bio-history” from “bio-power” which designates what “brought life and its mechanisms into the realm of explicit calculations and made knowledge-power an agent of the transformation of human life” (143).

    I do not have the book but have read the parts relating to Governments and power. This is closely related to debtors prisons, bankruptcy, and the public attitude to debtors and defaulters. Foreigners are surprised at the Irish attitude to bank bail outs, particularly of people under 30 which includes university students. There is surely something in the culture that accounts for our acceptance and passivity of paying for errors we as individuals did not commit.

  7. Mickey Hickey Says:

    Link to Vol 1. History Foucault

    Right of Life and Power over Death starts on P. 133

    Google is marvellous.

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