Ctrl, Alt, Del – What’s Wrong With The British Economy And How To Fix It

 If you stand at the end of my street and look at the roofs of the houses, you will notice something. The roof tiles are all old and faded and covered in moss. They no longer sit in neat rows and bear more than a passing resemblance to slanted trays of smashed in orange teeth. Look a bit closer, and you’ll notice that two of the houses do not fit this pattern. Their roof tiles are sleek and black and shiny, due to said tiles having been replaced very recently.

From this little fact, it would be easy to conclude that the people living in these houses are doing rather well for themselves compared to the rest of my street’s residents. It’s certainly the conclusion I came to. Replacing every tile on your roof is, after all, a very expensive proposition. It is entirely the wrong conclusion

The reason these houses have brand spanking new roofs is that they are Council Houses. Community housing paid for by the public and allocated to those in need of such housing. And the reason these houses are plonked in the middle of a privately owned street is not because the Council bought private houses and then rented them out. It’s because the Council used to own all the rest of the houses, but sold them off.

This story is repeated right throughout this area of the town I live in. Street after street, road after road. Just the odd one or two shiny new roofs amid dozens of moss covered ones. Public housing sold off at knock down prices, never to be replaced.

The British economy is like a man who has somehow managed to grow very very fat on imaginary food. It got sluggish and bloated feeding off an unsustainable bubble of easy credit. And there’s no doubt that this fat man needed to go on a diet. But if you want to lose weight, diet is not the sole answer. You need exercise too. Otherwise the body goes into starvation mode and stores fat like there’s no tomorrow. Which as far as it’s concerned, there might not be.

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This is the situation we are in now. Austerity, austerity, austerity and no light at the end of the tunnel. So banks won’t lend – despite being bailed out- and people are spending as little as possible A bit of good old fashioned Keynesian Economics is what we need. Public works. Build houses. Kick start the economy. Get things moving. A bit of calisthenics to augment the calorie restriction.

Sadly, this is very unlikely to happen. It would need a group of people who cared little for their reputations but a great deal about doing the right thing for everybody. This does not describe your average politician. Or even your above average one.

A future solution might be to fit the economy with a reset button. Money is, after all, just an illusion. It’s just an idea to get human beings to co-operate with each other. Something that human beings don’t naturally do in groups of more than one. It might work once the current crop of teenagers run the world. They’re used to Ctrl Alt Del being the answer to everything.

© Copyright Michael Grimes 2013

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About thedailygrime

At that awkward age - too young to be a grumpy old man, but just acerbic and downtrodden enough to have an opinion. Read it here.

One response to “Ctrl, Alt, Del – What’s Wrong With The British Economy And How To Fix It”

  1. Ned's Blog says :

    I prefer the easier and less time consuming “escape” button, myself.

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