In general I am all for phoney wars, rather than the other 'kinetic' sort. Kinetic? Kinetic action is the posh phrase used these days for the bit of wars which is about "breaking things and hurting people".
And, no, we are not lost, simply trying to read between the lines, and enquiring about the possibility of miracles. After all, what else could the Wallace Stevens poem Thirteen Ways of Looking at a Blackbird be about, except miraculous possibilities?
The 'Movement' towards freedom… which inevitably clashes with other people attempting to move in the opposite direction. Do we meet head on, or do we attempt some kind of dance in order to get around each other?
For instance I remember on my last vist to Totnes, it was a crowded High Street Saturday a few weeks ago, the pavement full of shoppers, and this one Tai-Chi man suddenly bearing down in a straight line for me. He was probably a Saturday High Street regular with his goatee beard and Chinese flowing cotton robes, practicing projecting his 'chi' energy or something. He wasn't moving sideways for anyone. Ill-mannnered git, I thought, as I got out of his way.
Nor was he enquiring about the possibility of miracles. Is there another possibility?
According to the latest (July Aug 2011) copy of the New Left Review, THE BOOK on THE CRISIS is: The Crisis of Neoliberalism, by Gerard Dumenil and Dominique Levy (Harvard U. Press 2011). At $49.95 hardback copy I wont be getting my copy just yet… but the NLR says it is the "best book on the topic by far".
The Dumeneil Levy analysis runs through the crashes and crises of 1890, 1929, and 1970 to 2008, engaging some Marxian 'luggage' as well as Glabraith, Keynes and Polanyi (etc), showing how and in what ways each crisis is the same and how each one is different. The latest – the one we are in now – is the problem whereby none of the money is getting to the right place, that is to investment: QE, all those billions of $$$$$$$$ being pumped IN… are ending up…… in China. Thus the absence of a V-shaped recovery.
"Neoliberalism is not about principles or ideology but a social order aiming at the power and income of the upper classes… ". (Upper Classes = Super-rich)
So what is the next move in this structural crisis? Dumenil and Levy agree somehow we will muddle through, but there will be an upheaval along the way. One possible future is a New Deal variant with the managerial and popular classes uniting to roll up their sleaves and get the job done. Hurray! But the D and L bets are that the managerial class (ie Pinky and Perky and all their mateys) will go it alone, make a move on the Super-Rich while at the same time keep the riot police on the streets to make suer the popular classes dont get uppity.
Like I said, do we meet head on or do we dance around each other? I don't agree or disagree with the D and L analysis, but I continue to look for the possibility of miracles. Like I wrote last week; Gangs are Good.