The Times are Changing, back into the same old thing

It is clear that no one like austerity. We have gotten used to lving a soft life, and being able to have more or less what we want, whether we can afford it or not. This softness is a feature of declining civilisations, but it is also a feature of caring and humane civilisations which require that the rich and healthy care for the poor and the ill. Whcih are we – in decline or very humane?

In France and Greece and in the United Kingdom in recent elections parties who have argued that austerity is not really necessary and that by spending money we can return to prosperity have done very well, capturing the votes of those who believe what they want to believe. Old socialists who toe the European line that austerity is absolutely necessary have done rather poorly in Greece.

We are in difficulty times and the times are changing and changing back into the same old thing. Perhaps we need to stop believing what we want to believe and start believing what is rational things might improve. If you are ill or in need the very first step that you must take is to recognise your condition, because if you do not admit to it, you cannot expect to cure it.

6 Responses

  1. I agree. We are in denial and I fear in decline too.

  2. I don’t think the Greek and French election results just indicate denial.

    That is too simplistic.

    Voters are brassed off with a political class which created a mess by borrowing and spending too much. In the case of Greece & France and possibly Italy & Spain, voters are fed up with the financial cost of being in the Eurozone and the EU with its spendthrift ‘commissaires’.

    Voters in the UK are fed up with the enormous scale of economic mismanagement of this and previous Governments. No one in the Cabinet has an attainable and positive vision for the future. Osborne seems to believe he is just a company finance director, balancing the books.

    In my view, the vote for Labour in By-elections was just protest. I don’t think it was vote for spending but just voting for anyone else than the incumbent.

    The vast majority of Greek and French voters are not personally responsible for their countries’ mess and those in useless and pointless “state” employment are, unspurprisingly, unwilling to give up their lifestyle and pension despite the benefits such sacrifices would bring.

    What I see in all of these elections is the fundamental failure of democracy.

    Votes are won by those who promise the most to the most. That is not a sensible way to run a country’s economy. In my view, running Government should be separated from running the Economy. GIve the politicans some pocket money to set up their quangos, diversity training and overseas aid but let the money earning part of the economy be run by professionals who know how to make a profit.

    Using your illness analogy, the newly ‘voted in’ politicians are mostly offering miracle cures whereas the old ones offer leeches. Neither cure is likely to be successful when, in fact, a doctor’s judgement is required.

    Unfortunately, democratic Government has become so (financially) big it’s failure will impoverish millions.

    Is it time to give up on democracy and try something else?

    • I disagree that the vast majority of Greek and French voters are not responsible for the mess; they voted for government after government who spent more that they, as voters, were prepared to pay in taxes. You get the government you deserve, in a democracy and probably only in a democracy.

  3. I don’t think I said Greek and French voters were not responsible for the mess. But it is a problem with democracy that politicians often win power by making promises to voters which require enormous borrowing and spending. So who takes responsibility when it goes wrong?

  4. A fitting poem

    The more things change, the more they’re tha same, human nature never varies in the power game.
    Those who seek power are not alturistic, it’s the psycopaths game, it’s called opportunistic.
    Whatever’s in vogue, extravagance or austerity, leading clique always adds to their own prosperity.
    The modern citizen’s a person allowed to roam, carrying bags down the street where onces was their home.
    Chubby cheek bankers leave much destitution, rewarded for plundering, ignoring constitution.
    Peasant soldiers follow orders, see what it brings, power MIC and booty for masters who live as kings.

    The problem of all leaderships is inevitably, someone will want to start playing god, governments are useful to the goverened, only so long as inherent tendencies towards tryranny are restrained.
    The penultimate destiny of power is fragmentation where brutality breeds brutality, love breeds peace, the coward will not fight, a fool refuses to see necessity and the scoundrel put’s himself ahead of humanity.
    Give me the judgement of a balanced mind in preference to mans laws every time, because codes and manuals create institutionalised and patterened behaviors and all patterned behaviour tends to go unquestioned gathering their destructive momentumn.
    Show me a completely smooth operation and I will show you a cover up.

  5. @ R K

    Not true, it was the Greek government who allowed in the debt monsters to prey upon their populous, wealth via debt and intrest upon the masses labour in unsustainable, humans are predominantly lazy beings and took the bait readily like those offering it knew they would, it was a well planned trap and there are those who knew that lending what does not exist in advance means certain death to all who partake of that cherry, it’s also known as Usery.

    In Greece we have ongoing and bad bureacracy which actually destroys initiatives, there is little that bureacracts hate more than innovation, especially innovation that produces better results than the old routines they protect.

    Bad administrators tend to hide their mistakes until it’s too late to make corrections, one of the hardest things to find is those who actually make good decissions, due to societies being tainted with the greed model grown into society by encouraging complacency.

    A bad administrator is more concerned with reports than decissions, he wants hard records which he can display as an excuse for his own errors, the difference between a good administrator and a bad one is about five heartbeats.

    Good administrators make immediate choices that can usually be made to work, the bureacrats currently working in Greece are not thinking for themselves but following a well rehearsed program of theft and destruction against the very people they are supposedly trying to protect.

    A proving ground for and on behalf of the United Nations, the would be world leaders funded by their world bank.

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