Wednesday, September 8, 2010

The Emperor's New Clothes

Like the famous short tale by Hans Christian Andersen, our current leaders stand before us saying one thing when a totally different reality is evident to even the youngest members of our society.

According to Wikapedia:
In his tale, an Emperor who cares for nothing but his wardrobe, hires two weavers who promise him the finest suit of clothes from a fabric invisible to anyone who is unfit for his position. The Emperor cannot see the cloth himself, but pretends that he can for fear of appearing unfit for his position or stupid; his ministers do the same. When the swindlers report that the suit is finished, they dress him in mime and the Emperor then marches in procession before his subjects. A child in the crowd calls out that the Emperor is wearing nothing at all and the cry is taken up by others. The Emperor cringes, suspecting the assertion is true, but holds himself up proudly and continues the procession.
Here in the waning days of Summer 2010, I find myself referring often to the current similarities to this strange tale written in 1837. I wish that President Obama could stand before the American public, and state that the growth paradigm we have been operating under for the past 150 years, is now history, and that we must for the sake of our children, and their children, create a sustainable economy.

If the President of the United States or the Secretary of the Treasury, or the Chairman of the Fed were to make this proclamation, he would either be assassinated before the end of his speech, or simply carted away and heavily medicated under the guise of "national security." If this reality was openly acknowledged, our current economy and army of investors working away at developing and selling fantasy financial products on Wall Street, would crash and burn in a matter of hours.

I am here to proudly say, and ask all of you reading these words, to yell at the top of your lungs, "The Emperor Has No Clothes!" We are rapidly approaching the edge of an abyss that could make the Great Depression, look more like a slight economic correction if we do not change our direction.

Along with the creation of renewable energy technologies, re-localized food production, made in America campaigns, and rebuilding America's passenger railroads, we need to acknowledge that "sustainable growth" is an absolute impossibility and it is time to seriously engage in how we can transition this great nation to a sustainable economy we can believe in.

1 comment:

Jeffrey said...

Great comments, Zev. Tell us more!