Saturday, April 09, 2005
It's naive in the extreme to think that a country like ours can survive in a global market economy without thinking about what we can win at. We can not win at manufacturing or call centres as it can be done cheaper and better else ware. We can not win at mineral extraction or processing as it can be done cheaper and better else ware. We can not win at farming and agriculture as is can be done cheaper and better else ware.
For the short term, we can probably beat the Chinese and Indians at education of our population, but we don't seem that interested.
The social costs (unemployment, poverty, mis-education, crime, health, drink, drugs) will far outweigh the costs of subsidising and nationalising these uneconomic industries, you only have to look at the areas affected by the closure of the mines (North of England and South Wales) to see this, we have created generations of costly problems.
I guess the best we can get from this is some sort of empathy towards a developing country that is desperate for a country such as ours to invest in them or at least buy their produce for a decent price. They are going to have to compete in this ridiculous global market too, and are coming from a position far worse than ours.
What sort of mess have we created? We have awoken sleeping dragons with our thirst for cheap consumer crap, and soon they will come and burn us to the ground.