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For all the campaign talk about spending cuts, the term “austerity” doesn’t get thrown around much in American political speech. In Europe, governments have imposed steep cuts to entitlement programs in order to encourage growth, but those cuts have triggered protests and social unrest, while yielding little private sector growth.
We examine the long history of austerity with Mark Blyth, professor of International Political Economy at Brown University and author of “Austerity: History of a Dangerous Idea.”