For years central banks across the world have printed ever more money and have spent their time looking for "green shoots". Politicians and the optimistic have continued touting that we only need "confidence", and that consumers need to go out and spend. Many economist have placed the blame for our woes on austerity claiming that it is not the answer and will only make things worse. With the bonds and coupons of the strongest countries yielding near zero after inflation savers are left with a losing hand. The reward for saving and doing the "right thing" is gone. Our government centered economy does not work, the emperor has no clothes! Slowly our Government, and those others across the world are breaking their promises and rewriting the rules.
The term "modern society" is based on the idea that mankind and society has seen rapid and massive change over the years. During the last two hundred years we have created new ways for man to relate to his governments, institutions, and each other. The entitlement societies that have developed over the last several
decades were created following the industrial revolution,
advantages, capital accumulated from the colonial
era, and the domination of global finances. They were built on the
assumption that those advantages would continue in both Europe
and US, and that ever greater prosperity and entitlements would be
sustained through debt financed consumption growth. In that eerie
fantasy world, debt fueled consumption was to be the catalyst to bring
about ever more growth.
Now reality has raised its ugly head and it is becoming apparent that
this is unsustainable. The entitlements and promises that have piled up have begun to overwhelm those forced to honor them. While the
populations of Europe and America were led to believe the good times
would never end, recently they have begun to see their core advantages in technology,
capital, and productivity started to erode, and to
lag behind the emerging countries. Manufacturing jobs have steadily moved to countries that have the resource of cheap and abundant labor, many of the good jobs are being replaced by low
skilled service jobs, this has removed the supports from our debt fueled
prosperity and showing it to be unsustainable.
We were told that we were moving up the
value chain, while in reality the opposite was true. The
debt fueled prosperity and consumption growth of the past has led many to believe that
their future would be secure if they moved towards "higher value adding activities" than the
emerging and developing countries. The economies built on those false assumptions are now
burdened by the weight of past debt. Add to the suffering pain from a surging world population and changing demographics and you have a new economic reality. Merely addressing the symptoms of our malaise as "financial problems", a tactic
being tried by leaders, central banks, and the IMF, will only raise false hope, it
will not avert the economic and political catastrophe.
Central banks have tried to address the situation by printing money and
adding liquidity, this is their equivalent of a band-aid. Sadly they have
been putting one band-aid on top of another, but our wounds are not
healing. In the modern border-less world we have created, bankers are
finding it impossible to control where money flows, the result is akin
to pouring water into a leaky bucket. Money flows into the hands of
speculators, manipulators, and a over valued stock market, meanwhile the
poor and many people receiving a "stipend" from the government have little incentive and few prospects to earn money. With the burden of supporting a ever larger number of people not employed in real jobs in the private sector governments are running
Quantitative easing and the printing of money only mask the many problems that exist in the economy. Propping up banks and governments that fail, and will continue to fail is not the answer. We live in a world with serious issues that can and must be addressed by reforming the structural problems that have been allowed to fester. Creating more debt that cannot, and will not be paid off, is not the answer on how to move towards a sustainable long term economic model. Governments must face the reality that they have to step up to the plate and take responsible action, they must cut waste, and better utilize the tools at their disposal to better allocate opportunity and reward those who want to work and do the right thing. The bottom line is
that you cannot spend your way out of debt.
Footnote; This post dovetails with many of my recent writings, for more I
might suggest reading the article below. Other related articles may be
found in my blog archive, thanks for reading, your comments are