The News continues to be frustrating because so few people appear to have anything to say about how to help the Greek people or anyone suffering from ‘austerity’ – It was interesting that as Michael Portillo treked between Germany and Greece in a TV programme last week he could find hardly anyone in either country who wanted to leave the ‘euro’ – if he’ d been touring the UK finding UKIP members would not have been difficult. This is a conundrum for the British who do not have the same commitment to European Project.
The question of how to both stimulate an economy through investment in people and be part of the ‘euro’ determined by the Germany economy is difficult to answer. Most leaders appear to be commentators rather than leaders – good at analysing the state of play rather than coming up with serious alternatives and options for both sides to contemplate.
Will Hutton ( Sunday the Observer) at least outlines the dynamic in a way that acknowledges both the strength of popular anger in Greece, Spain etc and the Germany fear of inflation and frustration with those less able to organise themselves.
The lack of imaginative leadership in this situation appears to come from the fact that perhaps some of the solutions involve changing the way business and international finance works, which only the technocrats have full knowldege of but little interest in changing. Perhaps understanding how Germany itself works could be instructive.
I sense that Will Hutton’s knowledge of Germany underpins the fact that he can see possible alternatives. For instance, Germany values skills as well as HE, has locality investment banks that take a longer term view of investment return and value local SMEs and local governance. I’d like to know more, because in the UK we do not value these things and assume that the social values, local connections and human development are not teh concerns of business or finance, and that social investment comes when individuals want to be philantropists rather than because social values and economic interests are embedded in how business and the banks works.
Perhaps, its time to promote the good sense of Germany’s local goverance and atttitudes to education and training.
I’m trying to make sense of the dynamics at work here and transactional analysis might help.
Austerity is never going to help Greece and the parent (Germany) has to work out whether it wants to ban one of its children or help it grow?. Greece is paying the price for its own poor leadership and governance, especially in the regions where hopeful, young civil servants leave after six monthes and escape to the States because nepotism rules not good governance. Its not austerity that Greece needs but good leadership, administrative capabilities and a confidence in a more sustainable economy. If couched in this way perhaps the frustrated parent might give way and finance not ‘structural reform’ but locality innovation, SMEs and governance.