Short historical recap. Teeny-weeny bit biased. Starting in the Eighties. The West embraced a form of economics which made a lot of uber-rich people. By convincing a lot of ordinary people that something called ‘trickle’ would make them better-off, too.
I can think of lots of things that trickle. Most of which I can not mention on a family Facebook Page. But water also comes to mind. Hands up anyone who felt empowered by a waterfall that trickled?
Thirty years later. The rich of the West have been joined by new rich from Latin America, the Far East, Central Europe and Russia. That whole trickle distraction really caught on, when communism and the Cold War disappeared.
I will mention, in passing, that I kind of wish the mainstream media. Whose typesetting skills have also disappeared since the advent of the web. Anyone else noticed that? Anyways, I wouldn’t have minded if they had, with one momentous co-incidental shifting of the universal flow. Made an unconnected but consensual typo. And the world had been subjected to an immutable craving for treacle.
But. The universe doesn’t always share my sense of humor.
So. We now live in a world created by rich people. For rich people. Where a crazy billionaire could possibly bring on an economic apocalypse. And what do the rich folks do, in response to the trend they have inspired? They run away.
Do we care? After all they are (1) rich and (2) crazy. Well. They do know how to make money. Best to pay some heed. In which case, when the driver jumps from the moving Ferrari, best to take notice. Which means, we should all be terrified.
What can we do?
Well. Not all of us can escape to New Zealand. Or Elysium. But the great thing about economic apocalypse. As opposed to say nuclear armageddon or Judgment Day (and please, let’s not go there today). The great thing is that, the sun still shines, the earth still grows, people can still smile, and buildings pretty much stay intact.
So. As I’m wont to preach. When I’m in one of my less dark moods. Simply find a way to skirt the economic mess. Alternative lifestyles do exist. And they are in reach of everyone. Even the most disadvantaged.
Embrace mutualism. Power-sharing. Devolution. Co-operatives. Communal living. Localism. Even. And I cannot believe I’m saying this. When the chips are not only down. But have been swept off the table. Consider pure anarchism. Not the one where masked idiots throw rocks. But the one that builds locally-empowered communities. Where communities. Neighborhoods. Towns. Counties. Simply declare themselves off-limits to deplorable, tyrannical, centralized government.
Set up a local currency. Engage in barter. Develop bio-fuel locally. Use, in an eco-friendly way, the resources available around you. Don’t export from the community. Import as little as possible. If you have to bank, try to stay away from large, bailable corporate monsters. Try credit unions.
Above all. Believe in people. Believe in yourselves. Believe in the incredible and amazing pool of talent that sits, mostly dormant, all around you. Empower that talent to turn away from the economic ‘system.’ And turn inward. To the immediate community.
Let the rich be rich their way. Find a new way locally for the rest of us.