While the current world economic crisis is definitely one for the record books one wonders what history will say of this meltdown? Was it predictable? Were there signs? And if there were signs why did the people of the first decade of the 21st Century not follow them?
With hindsight as a guide it would be easy to play “Sunday Morning Quarterback” and proclaim this and that about the situation. But, let’s not do that shall we. Let’s get practical and imagine what we could find out if we leapt forward through time 100 years and looked back on this first decade of the 21st century and see what we can see. When they speak of us – what do they say? Of our economics – what do they say?
As luck would have it I just happen to have a time machine handy. I shall zoom forward 100 years to the 22nd Century and see what I can find out. Hang on. I’ll be back in moment.
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Well, I’m back!
Wow! What a mess. But, I’m only reporting on the economic meltdown of the first decade of the 21st Century — I don’t even want to start with what happened the day Earth ran out of oil or the day Sarah Palin became President of the United States – thank God for our new alien overlords that showed up a month later — and now rule over us all with an iron tentacle.
Perhaps, another time…
The first thing that struck me about us when I read about ourselves from the eye of our-future-selves was how clear and uncluttered the past can seem. A mere 100 years can do a lot to expose a calamity.
There were plenty of books on the subject in question and what shone clearly throughout the texts was the dramatic disparity between Consumer Price Index to Income to the rate of increase in house price. This was a common theme throughout the industrialized nations of the time.
What struck me was that while incomes remained stagnant, house prices skyrocketed by leaps and bounds. What was so amazing about this fact was that we, the citizens of that first decade of the 21st Century, failed to actually see it for what it was, quantify it, and test it against a common sense backdrop of normalcy. The fundamentals of the situation were elementary — if incomes are not increasing at a rate commensurable to house prices, other consumables or other big ticket items like cars and boats, then exactly how did we, the people of that first decade, believe that this economic state of affairs was even viable, let alone sustainable? But, according to the history books we did believe it!
And so the questions remain: Why didn’t we believe it? Why didn’t we see it? It was so obvious – but then I had the luxury and the hindsight of reading about this in the 22nd Century. So, maybe that’s the answer — we are consumed by the moment – quite literally — and we forget about who we are, where we are from, and where we are going. We lose our perspective and live in the moment without thought for tomorrow!
My research has led me to believe that this economic crisis has nothing to do with money at all. Rather, I believe, that it is the perpetuation of our own personal self image that is to blame. Individually we all wanted something we could not afford, and easy credit fed our need. Like a virus, this need was passed amongst us, and before too long we were all caught up in the madness. In the end we collectively drove this economic monster off a cliff and found ourselves dashed upon the rocks below. Justice? Perhaps. But, I think the real culprit is to be found in our psyche and group hysteria and not in our wallets after all. Maybe our greatest enemy is our humanness — and I see no wrong in that.
Well, that about sums it up. I think I have my answers — my research is done. Just before I left the 22nd Century I grabbed an interesting looking book off the shelf titled, “The Rise of the Alien Overlords and the Minions they Keep.” Hmmm… Apparently their arrival on Earth began in the 21st Century when they traveled back in time from the 22nd Century. They hitched a ride on a time machine owned by a guy who was interested in property, who traveled…