In the lead editorial of the June 18, 2011 issue, .The Economist holds pig-headed politicians playing poker responsible for our economic future. (Thanks to a mail strike I just received my copy)
There is a real risk that the politicians’ pig-headedness could lead to disaster. The odds of a catastrophe—harsh fiscal tightening in America, or a crash in the euro zone—may not be high, but neither are they negligible. Though economic logic suggests that the world economy is just going through a sticky patch, squabbling politicians could all too easily turn it into a meltdown.
Politicians like to take credit for a growing economy and voters like to blame them when things are going badly. And, current leaders may be pig-headed, but are they any more pig-headed than their predecessors? I figure the economy happens due to factors other than politicians. A more likely explanation for current economic problems is that we are depleting our resources. See an earlier post on The Living Planet Report.
The following quote is from Ernest Hemingway’s A Farewell to Arms. (Chapter XXl).
He said we are all cooked but we were all right as long as we did now know it. We were all cooked. The thing was not to recognize it.
Hemingway was talking about the Italians during the first world war but this comment could apply to our current economy. If we are “all cooked” and we knew it, then we might be able to manage the crisis so as to minimize suffering. As that is an impossible dream, we might be better off not to know it. Let’s join The Economist in blaming everything on pig-headed politicians.