Thursday, July 21, 2011

This is how it works in Capitalism, isn't it?

When Ireland and Greece were stricken by the economic crisis, everyone tried to understand how both nations ended up in this mess. Especially in Ireland that they used to be one of the best examples and success stories of Europe. They needed answers, someone to take responsibility and perhaps someone to blame.

Hence their Governments told their citizens that everyone is to blame, everybody has responsibility for the mess their countries are into because they spent more than they could afford to repay. In Greece, Mr. Pagalos MP even dared to blame every each one of the public, for allegedly  helping to waste all those billions of euro who went missing from EU subsidies.

So they promoted consumerism, capitalism, open free market and economic style. They encouraged their citizens to spend and keep buying to support their country's economy. They have encouraged them to accumulate debt, use credit cards and buy all those things they thought were important for their happiness.

Because that is how capitalism works and what it needs, on a personal, national and international level. They have bombarded them with advertisements everywhere, from their TV sets, radio and internet, to newspapers and the magazines. Programs selling property, cars and the good successful lifestyle modeled after the American dream and social style.

They encouraged them to invest in property at home or abroad, to upgrade and buy new cars, mobile phones, the latest gadgets. All movies and TV series supported and promoted this life style. For decades they brain washed them with TV programs that they could win loads of cash and be happy, or reality programs that they could become rich and famous.

In fact if you had different political views or life style, you were considered a hippy, an out-sider and an odd ball. Then, when Capitalism failed and its faults and weaknesses were exposed, not only it was the citizens that were called to pay up and bail out the Banks to save their countries' economies, but they were blamed as well for over spending and being greedy.

Suddenly they had the finger of the politicians pointing at them, while the rich and upper classes avoided the cuts and austerity measures. In the case of Greece, not only they were deprived of a true sustainable economy and equal opportunities like the other European citizens for decades, but they were consistently lied upon on the true condition of the country's economy.

The rich elite of Greece and many European nations, are making profit out of the deals that all our Governments are negotiating and promoting in order to solve the problem. Thus they profit on the cuts that the ordinary worker must accept.

So, if this is how Capitalism has evolved and what our relationship with the Markets and the Banks has come to, then perhaps we need to rethink what we want. Not only they owe us and are the ones to blame for the risks they took for the sake of the Capitalist system, but we pay for those risks and we are being told off as well.

Can Europeans rethink and change their life style, or is it already too late and they do get what they deserve in the end? How can we achieve real change, when Europe is still a very conservative continent and its citizens themselves support Capitalism? It is only when they come to deal its real side effects when they protest, let's face it.

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