Friday, April 3, 2009

The G genie

All the big-talking boosterism from people like Gordon
Brown and Barack Obama at the G20 meeting—
‘Together we can beat this thing,’ etc—fails to conceal
the fact that the world’s most powerful politicians and
money men are desperate to keep the genie in the bottle.
What if word got out that the world is now relying for
solutions on the very people who got us into this shit in
the first place? If it did, you might even see the world’s
most powerless people doing something about it; and
we all know where that can lead: think Berlin Wall,
Eastern Europe 1989–90. Even the cleverest banker is
helpless against mass action; even governments are
forced to take notice, if indeed they survive in office.
Already people are taking to the streets—and that’s only
the start. As reported by Rod Oram in the Sunday Star-
Times, business consultant Andrew Grant told the jobs
summit that the global crisis had already progressed
through four phases—mortgage market collapse, credit
market collapse, steep falls in economic activity, drastic
drop in expectations—and the fifth phase had already
begun: social and political unrest. ‘You should have been
able to hear a pin drop in the cavernous Manukau City
Events Centre,’ wrote the oracular Oram. ‘But instead
the delegates kept munching their sandwich lunches.’

Another genie being kept in the bottle, by the way, is the
dread word ‘depression.’ It’s patently clear that we’re in
a major depression but the world’s most pp & mm (see
above), backed by the mass media, will do anything but
use the word. Favourite euphemisms: meltdown, crisis,
downturn and of course recession, a hunble word
currently being loaded with far more weight than it can
bear. Somehow, the rote repetition of 'It’s a recession’ is
supposed to make us feel that it’s only the invisible hand
of the market at work, and soon everything will right
itself and normal transmission will be resumed. To say
‘depression,’ on the other hand, is to allow the possibility
that human agency is behind it all. And that, of course,
would never do.

Personally, I’m looking forward to the day when the press
can run with the following headline:


1 comment:

Truth Seeker said...

On the side of the PP's & MM's is the inertia embedded in ignorance and the willful belief that everthing will be as it was soon, if not right now.

Anyone who has read "Collapse" by Jared Diamond knows it ain't necessarily so.

But people will believe it is so until they either die or hunger drives them to face reality.

We are - collectively - dumb beasts and denying bad things is one of the things we do best. The bodies cast forever in the ashes of Pompeii are evidence of this. They refused to leave.