Grexit, Grexident and now Greferendum – the debt crisis in Greece has thrown up plenty of portmanteaux, as linguistics professors call these often-tortuous combinations of words.
And with Greferendum becoming a reality this weekend, it now looks increasingly likely that the other portmanteaux will move from concept to execution. Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras’s Mr Smith Goes to Brussels act doesn’t seem to have achieved as much as those who voted for him hoped; they might have been better off with a Frank Underwood from the “House of Cards”—less idealistic, but better at negotiating backroom deals.
History may prove Tsipras right, but it would be a pretty bittersweet victory for a leader who looks likely to soon be either out on his ear, or governing a country that has gone from developed to emerging or even frontier market in five years.
The Athens leadership’s hopes—that the fear of Greece leaving the euro would help get it greater concessions—seem to have been dashed, with precious little hope remaining (at the time of writing) of a last-minute solution to the impasse between lenders and debtors.