Friday, 29 August 2008
The Whistle Blower
So today, for the first time (if I recall correctly) in this economic crisis, one of the establishment, David Blanchflower, of the Bank of England's Monetary Policy Committee (MPC), has declared that this country could be facing a paradigm shift. From my perspective, this is what an environmentalist is waiting for- the loss of confidence in a system which pays lip service to, but in reality falls well short of valuing and preserving diversity. That diversity includes all people, of all ability, of the environment, all wildlife and culture. To be fair to Blanchflower I think he was simply referring to a paradigm shift in how to make more money but it is nice to hear the words uttered. May be this current crisis is not 'the big one', maybe it is. It deepens everyday- the latest forecasts are for further increases in unemployment, house price crash by over 30%, devaluing of sterling and higher inflation. That translates as a multi-pronged attack on individuals- the value of their house is falling, while their repayment on the mortgage is climbing, while their income is getting less and their money is not going as far. This will lead to de-motivation and lack of optimism and spending, which feeds back on itself to generate more gloom. I believe we are french connectioned, but see it as overall as a good thing- to get to the top, you have to touch the bottom first. To look for an alternative way people have to loose faith in the current way. Maybe I am over optimistic over the nature of this down cycle but one fact remains- basing societies on geometric and/or exponential resource consumption, economic growth and population growth in a finite world is impossible- so one day this will have to be seriously addressed- maybe that day has come- maybe it hasn't.