An Indian Civilizational Perspective

The Current Crises of Understanding of Economic Options and Social Costs

Billions have been poured into the economy and billions (realistically, Trillions) will be poured in the months ahead. Yet, there is no light!

Filling Virtual Ditch with Real Money

With derivatives and a lot of leverage going around in the financial world, it seemed as if ascertaining “a” owner helped to get to a fair value and a transaction. But it now seems that the entire “monument” built virtually on solid, albeit insufficient, foundation of an asset is crumbling… and rapidly! That is creating a void that was hitherto filled by “VIRTUAL MONEY”. Now, at this point in time, there is no way to fill it with Virtual Money.

So the Governments of the world from US to UK to India are filling the void left by the evaporating virtual money through REAL MONEY.

It is this filling up of the void from Virtual Money Evaporation by Real Money that is creating a situation which is leading to heart-break in the public and the conservatives. And in a way they are right!

What are the ways out?

  • Fully or substantially fill the virtual money void by real money (as is happening in case of US banks and AIG) – but this will can only, and realistically, be done by printing more money. Which essentially means runaway inflation – which can hurt the poor and middle class. The world has seen this in Germany prior to WWII. Such situations have usuallly lead to an upheaval and wars.
  • Led the Virtual Money monument fall to its foundation. And then start the rebuilding of the monument on SOUND principles. This will lead to substantial social costs and a situation of possibly uncontrolled anarchy in some places. That may be a very tough situation to handle.

Either way, there is a substantial social crisis looming on the horizon. Unfortunately we are only talking of economic cost. Social unrest will add a cost that will be FAR greater!

US response to Economic Crisis

This government is following the Keynesian prescription – by creating public works projects. This is useful when no one is hiring and the commercial activity is getting hurt. That is good. Then there are tax cuts so people get more money in their banks and hands so they can breathe a little better. Again a thoughtful thing!

But both these measures are done with ONLY one goal in mind – CONSUMPTION OF VALUE.

What about the GENERATION OF VALUE??

What is US selling to the world and earning to have a right to consume?? It almost seems like a family which thinks living on Credit cards (US Treasury Notes in this case) is their BIRTH RIGHT!

And the only difference between the prosperous yesterday and recessionary today is that the credit cards have expired and the family can’t get another one right away! So, all the effort of this family is toward trying to get more credit cards.

Who will earn? And how will this country earn to get enough to start consuming?

IS there a manufacturing strategy? How about giving an Income Tax Break for 10 years to all the Auto manufacturers in the world to manufacture cars (from existing or new plants) in Michigan?

Some people will say we can sell high end services or top niche products. Well, how many countries in the world buy solar panels from US? Or how much of stem cell research sell in South East Asia or Africa?

People in those countries, nevertheless, will buy products from China and China can make money.. assuming of course, that China itself will remain solvent.

What do you think? What should US do?

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