Many people in the industrialized countries are doing well. Equity holders are pleased about the continuing boom on the stock exchanges, home and apartment owners about sharply increased real estate and land prices. Unemployment remains low, especially in Switzerland and Germany. The purchasing power of low and middle incomes has hardly fallen.
But most people feel that it can’t go on like this. Two years ago, a warning was issued against a “deceptive calm”. But since then everything seems to have gone well. It would be nice if the Warner were wrong and mistaken.
But the big problems not only persist, but they have intensified: for politicians and international corporations have hardly done anything serious to reduce the imminent existential and systemically important risks. On the contrary, they have prevented breakdowns, above all by fleeing to the front, continuing as before with even more no-brainer, and thus considerably increasing the dangers and consequences of major crises. Many are not aware of this enough, because the big media do not inform clearly enough about it.
Global collapses could be postponed by increasing the risk Stakes, at the price of even more drastic threats.
The nine greatest dangers
- The pollution of the atmosphere with CO2 has not been reduced in the last two years, but has increased(https://www.iisd.org/search/?qu=subsidies+fossil+fuels “Search IISD”). Is a lot of talk about a CO2 tax or Levies, is to restrict the consumption. In fact, around 400 billion dollars of taxpayers ' money still goes into the production and sale of oil, Gas and coal every year, that is, into those energy sources that heat up the climate.
- Most Economists and politicians do not want to have true, economic growth in the industrial countries as a solution to many problems such as debt, unemployment or the financing of pensions and environmental costs has been used for twenty years. For twenty years now, growth in the United States, Europe and Japan has not been possible without additional debt. On the contrary: the debt increases more than the gross domestic product.
- The global debt has not been reduced in the last few years, but the dangerous mountain of debt continued to rise.
- Instead of a disarmament agreement, arms were reversed restrictions without compensation. The war business is extremely profitable. Most major US corporations are involved in the arms business. The arms industry and its lobbies are benefiting from a new Cold War. Therefore, they spread enemy images and inflate military dangers, especially from Russia and China.
- Money is created as if it were a risk-free perpetual motion machine. The central banks of the USA, Japan and the euro states are buying up large amounts of bonds, some of them semi-bankrupt banks and industries, in order to prevent systemically important bankruptcies. It is at most a medium-term, but short-sighted and risky method to avoid problems. 6.instead of disciplining the international financial casino, which can plunge the real economy into ruin at any time, the USA let the reins be pulled again. 99 percent of all financial derivatives, such as options or CDS, with a nominal value, exceeding the world’s gross domestic product by around ten times, only serve to bets a Casino financial economy, and to secure any transactions with real goods.
- In recent years, Europe has also started to eliminate the causes of migration movements from Africa, but only a symptom of policy is limited and the boundaries made denser. We still have many consumer goods, food, copper, Gold, uranium and other raw materials produced in the south and East by people working for starvation wages in often sickening and inhumane environments. You can only dream of social and unemployment insurance. Let’s flood Africa with agricultural products, which we subsidize with billions. At the same time, the World Bank and the world Monetary Fund prohibit poor countries from protecting their local production against highly subsidized imports. Corporations and investment funds buy or lease large fertile regions in Africa in order to produce feed and agricultural fuels for us rich. The enormous increase in population, the international struggle for resources and wars will fuel Migration towards Europe.
- The number of people on our limited planet is more instead. Too many people “trash, trample and poison the earth as if we had a second one,” says Wolf Schneider. As early as 1961, the World Health Organization (who) had warned that humanity “will powder everything that nature has accumulated in 250 million years.” The United States alone would have consumed more raw materials by 1961 than the entire human race by 1900. Nevertheless, many states encourage childbirth with some incentives. And especially in Africa, many women are denied voluntary family planning.
- Humanity survived on our planet only thanks to water and a thin layer of humus. But at the expense of nature and biodiversity, people spread themselves so widely that they saw off the ecologically fragile branches on which they themselves sit. Intensive agriculture continues to decimate virtually uninhibited insect, Amphibian, Reptile and bird populations. Instead of allowing fish stocks in the world’s oceans to recover or maintain stability, according to the WTO, overfishing continues to be subsidised with around 30 billion dollars of taxpayers ' money every year. Primeval forests continue to be cut down unchecked.
Such risks have been discussed above all in recent years, but little action has been taken, although the nine listed risks urgently require swift and efficient action. However, the parliaments and governments of the Western democracies by powerful lobbies paralyze, which can achieve their short-term interests, with their money, their Think Tanks, their Lobbying and their influence on the major media. The democratic institutions date from the 19th and 20th centuries and have been insufficiently adapted to economic and social development. Whether global warming, highly speculative financial casino, plastic waste of the seas, dwindling biodiversity, growth mania, causes of Migration or superiority of large corporations: hardly any major party dares to tackle the evils at the root.
In the recent election campaigns for parliamentary seats, not even the expropriation of savers and pensioners, the massive favouring of property owners and shareholders, the systemic relevance of big banks and big corporations or the imminent next big financial crisis were an issue. Let alone the arms spiral, the causes of Migration or the dwindling livelihoods. To solve such global challenges, Germany and small, rich Switzerland could also take international initiatives and act in an exemplary manner.
A major weakness of our democracies is that politicians and the media from the game to make the increasingly narrow scope of our democratic institutions, a permanent topic of public discourse. It seems quite evident that these must be adapted to the new power relations and to the challenges of our time.
History teaches that major course corrections usually take place only after major crises. However, far-sighted economists and politicians should already be concerned today with how a future can be shaped without man-made global warming, without debt crises, without ecological and social exploitation, without a concentration of power in international corporations and, last but not least, Without Growth Constraints.