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The economic situation today is drastically worse than a couple years ago, and the euro is doomed as a concept, Nassim Taleb, professor and author of the bestselling book "The Black Swan," told CNBC on Thursday.
"We had less debt cumulatively (two years ago), and more people employed. Today, we have more risk in the system, and a smaller tax base," Taleb said.
"Banks balance sheets are just as bad as they were" two years ago when the crisis began and "the quality of the risks hasn't improved," he added.
The root of the crisis over the past couple of years wasn't recession, but debt, which has spread "like a cancer," according to Taleb, who is now relived that public attention has shifted to debt, instead of growth.
The world needs to prepare itself for austerity, he warned. "We need to slash debt. Unfortunately, that's the only solution," Taleb said.
Other analysts warned about austerity programs spreading from the euro zone to the US where the growth in debt will become unsustainable over the longer term.
Obama administration's efforts to pull the US out of recession haven't succeeded, according to Taleb. "It's not that they make mistakes, it's that they almost get nothing right." Moreover, a second major stimulus package may be futile, he warned.
"Obama promised us 8 percent unemployment through stimulus. It hasn't worked." There are significantly more liabilities in the US than in other countries around the world, he said.