Monday, June 11, 2012
The end is near?
It used to be that we had men on the street carrying boards saying, "The end is near." Now we have Paul Krugman [today's New York Times]telling us pretty much the same thing.
"Whatever the deep roots of this paralysis, it’s becoming increasingly clear that it will take utter catastrophe to get any real policy action that goes beyond bank bailouts. But don’t despair: at the rate things are going, especially in Europe, utter catastrophe may be just around the corner."
I hope that the reason this statement resonates with me is that I have a deep neurosis: Could a dark pessimism lurk deep in my personality? I only hope it cannot be real.
What I know is that I have friends from left and right who fear catastrophe ahead -- for different reasons, of course. But when the future looks dark from starkly different angles it could actually be as bad as we fear.
What is most exasperating is how easily -- even in this perilous time -- our politicians pin the problems of our age on the failures of each other. Of course each one tells us, in this election year, that they know how to fix it -- without giving us details; only that they are the ones qualified to deal with the great problems of our age. For me it is terrifying that we have to entrust our future into the hands of politicians, the same guys that got us in this mess.
This crisis -- in governance, in the economy, in the global ecology, etc -- has been brewing for at least a generation and it isn't going away easily or quickly. At least, so I fear.