Monday, October 27, 2008

it's the end of the end of history!

bring on the regulators! - link to the 'the end of the end of history' set on flickrSo, Alan Greenspan has admitted he was wrong.

But why stop there?

Bush and Cheney are wrong. Tony Blair was wrong. John Howard was wrong. Ronald Reagan was wrong. Francis Fukuyama was wrong. Margaret Thatcher was wrong. Milton Friedman was wrong. Ayn Rand was wrong. Friedrich Hayek was wrong.

The entire neoliberal program is melting down around us, and taking our prosperity with it.

But the economic collapse is nothing!

The damage this noxious coterie and their toxic theory have wrought on our environment is literally catastrophic, and we've barely even to begun to see the deadly fruits of their labours.

What this planet now needs is leaders who aren't crippled by the paradigm that has dominated western thought since the 70s.

We need far-sighted regulators. To stabilise our economies and get them working for the benefit of the whole community again, not just making the ultrarich ultraricher.

And to ensure our economies don't continue to systematically wreck the very living systems without which neither they nor we can conceivably exist.

it's the end of the end of history - link to the set on flickrBill Clinton's famous line needs one simple - but profound - modification for our times: It's the (mixed) economy, stupid!

With banks and the finance sector being frantically nationalised (or renationalised!) across the globe, and with major industries looking set to follow suit, turbo-capitalism has reached its "Fall of the Berlin Wall" moment. Less than 20 years after hubristically proclaiming its ultimate triumph!

Neolberalism is as dead as Communism, and the sooner we face up to that the better we'll be able to rebuild our lives. And our planet!

the starbucks theory

There's a notion doing the rounds that the more Starbucks a country has, the more it's reeling in midst of the economic meltdown. Because the more Starbucks a country has, the more it's swallowed the globalised neoliberal agenda, and the more it gets sucked under into the vortex created by CEOs, CDOs, and CFDs!

I'd go further, and argue instead that the more commentators a country had profoundly pontificating over Fukuyama's famously risible notion of 'the end of history' the more it's in trouble right now!

We've just reached the end of the end of history - and it's a scary place to be. But there are opportunities, too.

The 'sophisticated' west has functioned as an effective one party state blinded by a triumphalist, utopian 'free market' ideology for the last 3 decades. As a result there is a tremendous dearth of both ideas and leaders actually capable of properly conceiving, let alone dealing with, either the economic, or the (much more serious) environmental, crisis.

Notably it's the 'backward' South American nations that are now showing us the way. Only by restoring government to it's proper function - securing the livelihoods of populations and the natural systems they depend on - will we emerge from this morass...

Government must once again intervene to ensure that markets bring about a sustainable prosperity for all citizens. Deregulation and privatisation of key strategic services and industries has been trialled for 30 years and has failed miserably. Enough is enough. Wherever it makes sense to rigorously reregulate or renationalise governments must not be afraid to do so.

The corporate press and its 'insider' journalists and commentators - who did so much to sell us all this noxious package of ideas - may disapprove, but they are now only the relic mouthpieces of a moribund system.

It's whats genuinely good for people - that's all the people, not just the executives - and the planet that counts.

We have a lot of work to do - and so very little time in which to do it! Wasting more time attempting to revive palpably failed notions - for neoliberalism has been the real political correctness of the modern era - is simply a route to more disaster...

1 comment:

  1. Spot on.

    Any 'solution' has to involve less of that mystical elixir leverage.

    The federal government's new homebuyer's grant is a perfect example of this insanity. How is that going to help anything?

    Sorry hedge fund, CFD and CDO cowboys, but zip up your flies, the next phase has to be much less 'exciting'. It might however be more sane and most of all, more humble.



thanks for your contribution - bill - i'm genuinely sorry about having to switch on the 'moderation' process but comment spammers have really been cluttering up this journal!