In the video below, Michael Hudson discusses how damaging "austerity" really is. It wastes labor and production, and leads to economic shrinkage. In the last 30 years, there's been a persistent widening of wealth disparity, an enormous redistribution of wealth between creditors and debtors. In the U.S., the top 1% have doubled their share of returns of wealth (interest, dividends, rent and capital gains).
PROBLEM: The winners will push economies into Depressions rather than give up their gains. They will continue "business as usual." The creditors will not write down debt. Instead, they embrace the notion of "austerity."
But austerity makes debts harder to pay. A shrinking economy has less tax revenue, and this exacerbates the budget deficit and leads to calls to cut back spending. Cutting back spending drains money from the economy, adding a tax drain to the debt drain. If you repay debt, the money doesn't get used to buy goods and services, markets shrink, and a declining spiral results. Without writing down the debt, the debt overhead and imposed austerity will shrink economies and polarize nations even further between debtors and creditors.
The choice: Write down debts or suffer a chronic, severe recession. There's no way to recover while the debt overhead remains in place.