Tony Grist (poliphilo) wrote,
Tony Grist

Lots Of Childish Questions

Strange days, indeed, when General Motors and Chrysler and that other one are all on the verge of going under! Here in Britain, Vauxhall Motors- which is owned by G.M.- is also- obviously- on the At Risk list. (We have a little Vauxhall Meriva- very nice it is too). Government is, of course rallying round. But how can Government rally round, when it too is broke? I guess they're borrowing. But who from?  Who still has money to lend? Is it the Chinese Government? And who in their right mind would put themselves in hock to the Chinese Government? Only we already have done, haven't we? Which is why we can't do much more than cough politely at their human rights abuses.  

And how are we ever going pay the money back? This debt is going to be on the books for generations.  How dare we do this to our grandchildren?

I don't understand it. And I'm not sure the government economists do either. It's all mad, mad, mad to the nth degree.

And here's another question. If the big motor manufacturers do go bust, will we then run short of cars? I mean, demand may be dropping, but it's not ever going to flatten out altogether- we'll still all need to get about. Or will we? Maybe a dearth of cars will force us all to work from home (which would be highly sensible on all sorts of grounds). Or maybe we'll take up bicycling or buy ourselves pony carts.  Maybe this is the beginnings of the end of the car economy- as created by Mr Ford  et al a hundred years ago. Or maybe the Chinese will step in again- and the Indians- and all our cars will be imported from the East. Who knows?

My nephew Tom was suggesting that a return to the agrarian economy of the Middle Ages might not be such a bad idea. I replied- in a rather lordly fashion-  that this was an idea out of time-  which- regardless of its merits- just wasn't going to be taken up.  But I've been thinking about it since- and if the oil dries up and the cars stop being made and the world economy collapses like a souffle we may find ourselves back on our small-holdings in a generation or two whether we like it or not.

It's one of those moments in world history. The pack is being shuffled, the wheel's in spin, the dice are rattling around in the dice cup.

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