Kelvinwright's Blog

postmodern thoughts

Is there really a crisis?

I was shoulder to shoulder in one of Spain’s most famous stores this week. People were stressed, shouting, pushing, shoving, flashing cards and money like a day at the races. It was only 3 days until el día de reyes (“Kings Day”, when the Spanish celebrate the arrival of the 3 wise men to see the baby Jesus). Anybody would have thought that millons of people were celebrating a Euromillons lottery win.

The queues for Spain’s famous patisseries (pastelerias) are longer than the first day of Wimbledon, people waiting nearly an hour to buy traditional Christmas deserts, sweets, and cakes.

Restaurants are full to capacity, with reservations needed if you want to eat! Cafeterias are full with conversation and lively debate. Indeed if it were not for the absence of smoke, they would resemble nineteenth century Viennese Coffee houses.

Job boards are full too (not as many postings as four years ago, but this may also be reflecting a general trend to move away from job boards as part of an employer branding policy, attracting applicants to the company’s website, as much as saving costs. In my own experience in HR, I have offered to present friends, associates, ex-colleagues for interviews, where their profile fits. Some have declined, because they didn’t study to do that type of work. If one is genuinely poor, and in a genuine crisis, the need to bite the bullet and take a job, albeit temporary, fixed contract, not exactly what we envisage ourselves doing for the next X years takes over.

Yet the talk on television is of crisis, no money, and pending doom, bankruptcy, and financial Armageddon, not to mention beliefs that the world will end in 2012. It seems that the marketing of the global economic crisis has been an extraordinary success. If there really is a crisis, then are the good times filling Spain’s pastelerias, shops, bars and restaurants being subsidised by plastic and more borrowing? Or is the hype of crisis more akin to a George Orwell novel and the need to keep the masses on the edge of poverty via propaganda campaigns and strategic marketing?

I do not doubt that Western Europe is in a very precarious position, but I do doubt the constant negative news being pumped out of Telescreens (reference to George Orwell) every night to further strangle the individual hope of exiting this crisis and pending doom.

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January 6, 2012 - Posted by | Uncategorized

1 Comment »

  1. I always enjoy reading what has been in your blog, the last as good as the first.

    Comment by iris wright | January 10, 2012 | Reply


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