Friday, 8 May 2009

A Nation of Coarse Fundamentalists?

"...economies in which wealth transfer predominates over wealth creation are destined for poverty, because ‘real’ wealth – food, medicine, bricks and mortar, high and low technology goods – is consumed or decays and has to be renewed. Exchange on its own, however vigorous, is unable to do this renewing. A farm or a factory producing electronic parts is more desirable than a casino, even if they all put resources and people to work. It’s a coarse fundamentalist view of economies..."
Actually it's a extract from Jeremy Harding's article on Islamic finance in the new LRB. He seems to be presenting* a ' straw man view' of Islamic takes on the consequences of usury and derivatives, as if no one could possible believe such a thing to be true...

But here's the thing: it's more or less what I believe, give or take the odd minor caveat. & I suspect it's close to what the vast majority of folk in Britain think as well.

Meanwhile, John Ross spends an inordinate amount of time demonstrating what surely should be obvious: the more a country actually invests in real things the richer it gets. Well, knock me down with a Credit Default Swap contract, who'd have thought it, eh? But then I'm a coarse fundamentalist, just not an Islamic one. Except on financial matters.

Where is the strategy for confronting this hole in the British political economy? Where is the vision- which might have to be one of 'blood, sweat and toil' - for our conversion into a economy of reality and sustainability ?

Just asking, like. Do take your time answering....

*The whole article is worth reading though - it's intelligent and informative. I'm just picking up on a loose paragraph.

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