It’s always nice to see someone write what I’m thinking but do it much better than I ever can. Here’s a short piece exploring the failings of the neo-liberal economic order and how we can build a better, kinder, greener, and more efficient form of capitalism.
For me, this recession has been defined by frustrating paradoxes. Easy money, overcapacity, and reckless consumption are what got us into this mess, yet governments must react by lowering interest rates and pushing through enormous fiscal stimulus packages with the hope that the housing, retail, and investment markets won’t fall much more. Similarly, long-term sensible investments in clean energy and social welfare are hindered by falling oil prices, a lack of funding, and fresh anxiety about corporate bottom lines.
From these developments, one could conclude that the global economic system is inherently flawed, that it is unethical and doomed to destroy itself. In fact, what is critically needed is moderation, a middle ground between total freedom and principled action. The incoming Obama Administration calls it “smart policies.” The alternative is protectionism, a rolling back of the open global economy, and political if not armed conflict.