What would you do if the unthinkable happened?

If we could have asked for a wake up call then we got it a few weeks back in Cyprus! The banks effectively took money from people's bank accounts without their approval and in return gave then some unwanted shares in the bank institutions. This contravenes the foundation building block of the capitalistic infrastructure... that we trust a bank to give back our money that we have given to them for safe keeping.

So what if the banks went bust and the money we thought we had (a series of electronic transactions in computers around the world) suddenly disappeared? ... just take a few moments to think about this... perhaps you can get the money which was in your current account... but all your savings, pensions, investments... gone!

What a leveller... in one instant moment in time, we are all pretty much the same, doesn't matter what possessions we have, how much money we had... that is all irrelevant now... what matters now is survival, and for that, you need people around you... people who you have deep relationships with, who trust you and in whom you trust. This applies to getting things done as well as obtaining the necessities for living... suddenly fancy restaurants, holidays, luxury items become very secondary to ensuring that we have food and warmth for our family... how quickly would our perspective on life change?

I hear you say... well that will never happen... the government would never let it happen... would it? ... If the UK was a business it would be trading insolvent right now. The country of course is not bankrupt, what we are doing however is borrowing each month because the money coming in to run the country is less than the cost of our overhead. So the simple solution is to reduce the overhead costs... government!! At the moment out of every £1 we earn 46p is spent on government, this is far too much, we can't afford it and we are getting deeper and deeper into debt to maintain it... something has to give... The government can not bail out the banks when (not if) we have the next crisis... they simply do not have command over that kind of money, so could they borrow once again?

The UK credit rating has dropped, the net effect of this is that it raises the interest rates for new borrowings, so as existing loans are repaid, new ones are set up with higher interest rates... this makes it progressively more and more difficult to service our existing debts let alone any new ones we might need... couple this with the problems of obtaining new borrowings... if we borrow £100 over a few years, the lender would be expected to receive their £100 back plus a profit for lending the money... let us say the over 2 years an additional £20 was earned... so we pay back £120... what if... once we introduce the factors of inflation and quantitive easing (increasing the money supply) the £120 we paid back was only worth £97? suddenly lenders would be less enthusiastic to put their money our way... what if we just were unable to borrow any more? what then?

If the above happened, we would have to start living within our means... what this looks like is (1) make drastic cuts in spending such as benefits, pensions etc. (2) Reduce the size of government, quango's, associations (3) or tell lenders we are not paying them back

None of the above looks very palatable... but we are so close to this happening that there is an inevitability about it and it is likely in the next few years... if you then bring in the whole European debacle and the implication of that to all of the above, we are in a very serious situation.

What to do? ... when the chips are down who can you turn to? Over the past 30 years we have been fed the lie that money, possessions, greed, control, power are the ultimate goals... compete and win (at the expense of others if necessary)... and yet we are moving to an era where possessions count for little if you can't put food on the table. One thing is for sure, it likely to get much worse before it gets better... it is time to start focussing on people and relationships not money... and even if the above ends up not being as bad as suggested, embarking on a more giving not taking, supportive and nurturing path would stand us all in good stead!


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