ralfy wrote:Borrowing, spending, and using less is not the solution to problems affecting a global capitalist economy but the result of those problems.
Not much in the way of argument to support your assertion; but as far as I can tell, the only "problem" involved is that it offends your sense of ethics. I think this is wrong placed, since the purpose of an economy is to permit almost everyone to get enough to eat and avoid freezing to death, while rewarding those who work harder or invest most with trinkets and acclaim. Now, I'll grant that the tiny upper, upper slice has perhaps gotten a tad carried away with the game, but, its hard to avoid the fact that pretty much no one is short on calories, and there aren't hundreds of thousands freezing to death in New England every winter. So it does sorta work.
As long as it keeps working, it will not be interrupted by any blogger's offended sense of morality, and I suspect it will keep working for a VERY long time. At least till the point that climate change kills our ability to grow adequate calorie crops.
A global capitalist economy requires increasing production and consumption of goods due to competition, and those increases require increasing amount of credit. And as more enter the middle class, that in turn requires even more credit as financial speculation sets in.
Terrific increases in mechanized agriculture and food production, manufacture of medicine and other necessities, development of infrastructure and generally industrialization, etc., were achieved significantly because of the use of oil. And as the conditions described in the first paragraph take place, even more oil and various resources are needed. See various primers on peak oil as well as Bartlett's lecture for more details.
The effect of such is increasing population, increasing consumption per capita as more enter the middle class, and increasing ecological damage. The effects include pollution, climate change, a credit crunch, and peak oil.
Thus, much of what is discussed in this forum supports my argument, not some silly claim about offending my sense of ethics.
The elite did not get "a tad carried away" but the complete opposite: only a fraction of what became over a quadrillion dollars in unregulated derivatives was needed to set off the 2008 crash, which in turn led to over $30 trillion vaporized, tens of millions of jobs lost worldwide, and record-high prices for food and oil. What makes matters worse is that that problem masked an even graver one--peak oil--which supports my argument even further, as more oil will be needed for a global capitalist economy to continue operating "for a very long time." Or as the IEA puts it, we'll need the equivalent of one Saudi Arabia every seven years just to maintain global economic growth.
Finally, one wishes that the whole world is New England, but the reality is that it isn't. Thus, as one celebrates the fact that the system "sorta" works because hundreds aren't freezing to death there, one conveniently ignores the hundreds of thousands dying because of drought and flood elsewhere. The irony is that these major floods and droughts may be part of the same climate change that you think isn't affecting us yet.
So, you go on dreaming of a global capitalist system that will keep working "for a very long time." I'll stick to the realities reported in this forum.
We few, we happy few, we band of chipmunks....