The power of the world's financial markets is great. The
range and depth of the economic forces that govern our
lives are mighty indeed. The movement of vast sums of
capital around the globe 24/7 is seemingly unstoppable.
Yet there is a power greater than all of these: the New
Zealand summer holidays. In November and December
the gathering global financial crisis—agreed by serious
commentators to be the worst the world has known—
—was supposedly bearing down on us all with such
speed and force that urgent countervailing action was
deemed an absolute priority by the incoming National-
led government. Mysteriously, however, the need for
urgent action expired on Christmas Eve and everything's
been on hold for the past three weeks while the nation's
leaders take a break. Well-deserved, no doubt, but when
your house is on fire, is that the time for sunning
yourself on the patio? Dozing off on the deck?
No force on Earth, it seems, can withstand the irresistible
inertia of the Kiwi summer hols. Unless (but surely not)
the whole crisis isn't really that much of a crisis after all?