Capitalism, we are told, is the only possible system. Anything else is impractical dreaming. Capitalism delivers prosperity, stability, growth… except when it doesn’t. The credit crunch is nothing new – remember the Asia currency crisis, the Russian debt crisis, Black Monday, Black Friday, Black Wednesday and all the rest? The March edition of New Internationalist had a nice article summarising the various crises that have hit – they count 45 since the early 1970s, or more than one a year.
If we were all living in anarchist communes and I proposed a system that produced prosperity for some, starvation for most, and went completely disastrously wrong about once a year, I bet most people would say “Er, no thanks.” But because it’s the status quo, and well-paid, respectable people in suits tell us it’s the only possible way to run things, we assume it’s the only possible way to run things, and happily pay billions to keep the banks in business while stepping over the people sleeping on the streets.
Sometimes, when I look at the state we’re in, I just want to laugh; other times, I want to cry.