Lies, Dam Lies and Statistics. The Economy A Political Game

Let me start this off how everyone who talks about the Economy should preceded their rants,

I am Alexandre Rodriguez and I have never studied modern economies beyond my anecdotal experience of them.

See that wasn't so hard, but then I suppose I have nothing to lose by saying I don't have a clue as I am not running for an election.

As a capitalist country the economy is arguably the single most important factor effecting the every day life of well, everyone. So its no wonder that as the UK faces a potential triple dip recession every politician out there is claiming to be the economic messiah who will lead us to the promised growth and drive living standards up. However in true messiah fashion, instead of proving to the public and academic community how and why their plans will work, we have to take it on faith. Which is all well and good until the academic community rally against your ideas like they are against Osborne and Cameron's austerity measures. Which begs the question who should we trust to safe guard the economy, the Politicians, the bankers or the academics? A question made harder by the fact that everyone has a good reason to lie about the Economy, or at least misrepresent it to reflect their own ideology. For instance is it a sign of the Tories pragmatism that their exact course of action to “cure” the economy, cutting public sector, benefits and privatisation, is exactly the same course of action they would take if the country was still in a period of economic growth. I have a suspicion that its not and that they are bending and spinning facts to justify their actions, but I don't know because the water in the public sphere on this topic is very murky. Its time that the world addressed this issue.

There needs to be a serious academic investigation done on every economic policy that a government plans to adopt. This issue is too big to define the differing views on how to get the economy back on track as idealogical, these polices need to be proved. Whilst many of the academic sphere would argue that the failings of austerity have regularly been demonstrated not just in academia but in the all to harsh reality of British life at the moment, it still fails to be done so in a public forum.

A politician can never be wrong, or they risk losing their seat, so there is little incentive to change their opinions once they have acted on them. But naive as it may sound one day I hope there will be a chancellor who can say that they don't know and with pride declare that they will find out and report back to the public and academic community with incontrovertible proof that the measures they plan will take us forward rather than back. It may be naïve but I hope that one day the chancellors plans will be able to stand up to academic scrutiny just like medicine is forced to. It may be naïve but I hope that one day the Chancellors actions will not have to be protected through religious faith in him and the party as well as a constant stream of misinformation.

I may be very naïve. While we wait for politicians to understand what they are talking about and require proof for their ideas and policy, I just hope we don't start electing doctors.

1 comment:

  1. We need an open and Frank public discussion on what to do.