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Greece: The People Have Spoken

As the day came for the Greek people to choose whether or not to accept the terms of a Eurozone savior package, it turned out that the Greek people voted "no" with an overwhelming majority. With over 60% of the Greek people disapproving of the terms their Eurozone partners have suggested, the Grexit appears to be more real than ever.

In light of the democratic nature of the vote, France and Germany have banned together in asking Tsipras for some reasonable counter terms -- a clear sign that the Eurozone's main economic drivers aren't sure they want to let Greece go just yet. It seems they understand the repercussions of such a drastic measure, and that Greece's Tsipras and Varoufakis knew exactly what they were doing by sending the terms to their own people for a vote.

It wasn't Me

Greece's Syriza party is, by definition, a populist party. The entire platform was based on giving a broken nation what it wanted: the right to say "no." It appears that when the going got tough, the Syriza party just went back to the people. The people felt, by and large, that austerity measures were only oppressing them, rather than helping them become solvent as a country. Despite the feeling of the Greek people over the last few years, Greece's Eurozone partners have played the austerity song on repeat to little avail.

Why no?

Each round of funding has been accompanied by demands to cut retirement spending, government jobs, and government-backed social programs. This reduction in spending was supposed to help Greece reach solvency, but has neither been effective nor fully implemented. By voting "no", however, the Greek people are showing their unwillingness to comply with austerity demands. That really means that Greece would rather start printing its own new IOU currency than remain in the Eurozone and minimize government spending.

New Money

The need to introduce a new currency stems from the conditions upon which the European Central Bank is willing to issue euros to Greece. Without euros as a way to pay back current debts. With no other currency flow available, Tsipras and Varoufakis have to convince their lenders that the new currency is worth the risk of accepting. The risk aspects comes in receiving a currency you can't be sure will be useable or tradeable on foreign exchange markets. I can issue you a billion German marks today, but unless you're a collector of obsolete currencies, I'm just giving you a heavy pile of banknotes.

What will happen to the euro?

In the short term, the Eurozone will survive, if not outright improve, after Greece exits the currency union. Long-term effects are harder to accurately forecast, but speculation abounds. Ironically, the Eurzone partners who have tried so hard to keep Greece afloat may be hoping for its utter failure after a Grexit. Ideologically, the euro sells itself as the ultimate form of European peacekeeping and prosperity. If Greece does well, the entire concept of the euro will be undermined. In a few years, if Ireland or Portugal find themselves on the brink of Greek situation, they may just jump ship. For now, be sure to benefit from the cheap euros. Especially compared to the dollar, they are cheap and will remain cheap while Greece settles its referendum issues. It won't take long for the rest of the world to realize the the Eurozone can get on quite well without them. Then they'll be a good deal more valuable.