Recovery recipe: know when you have enough

IN George Orwell’s novel Nineteen Eighty-Four, the Ministry of Peace wages war.

The Ministry of Truth falsifies records, the Ministry of Love uses fear to control people and the Ministry of Plenty rations food, money and medicines.

Such euphemistic spins are always less than half the truth. Spin is the modern method of propaganda.

We seem to be in shock and denial that the National Assets Management Agency is in fact our National Assets And Liabilities Management Agency. Will making a profit on our “assets” actually mean minimising our losses? Will we be lucky enough to break even?

People are slowly realising that using money to make more money was a flawed concept. That’s the real reason why the economy got into such a mess.

We have learned a hard lesson in the past year that greed is bad. We badly need a new economics textbook to guide us through the uncharted unknowns on the very sketchy roadmap to recovery. I dare suggest some chapter headings for such a book:

1. Real change begins when unselfishness replaces selfishness. Know when remuneration is enough.

2. Replace the profit motive with one of job satisfaction.

3. Put people before profit in all business ventures. Workers are not disposable commodities.

4. Keep economic systems simple. Cultivate the habit of saving.

Michael Mernagh



Co Cork

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