A question that was raised in my talk last Friday was why would anybody favor such a suicidal policy. Think of the US for a second. Why would the Republicans play with the possibility of a self-imposed default (by not raising the debt-ceiling limit last summer)? The point is that the idea that there is a fiscal crisis (yep there isn't), would allow them (and some pro-business Dems too) to cut spending on welfare programs like Social Security and Medicare. And by the way, high unemployment helps to keep workers in line and wages low. The same is true in Europe.
A severe fiscal crisis, that forces adjustment in the periphery, helps to keep workers in line, not just in the periphery, but also in the core countries. And helps if they want to roll back their Welfare State too. Jerry Epstein says essentially the same thing here.