Sunday, July 31, 2011

One word is missing in the American debate over the debt crisis: austerity. It's a revealing absence. In spite of the vast deficit, and despite the US being the home of individualism, no way is being offered for individuals to make a difference by changing their lifestyles.

Not so in the U.S.. In the five months I spent there earlier this year, I've never heard the word austerity measures in the political debate. The republican discourse is all about how the government is too much. The government needs to tighten their belts. There was nothing to people living beyond their means and no evidence that individuals have a role to play in the solution.

But the U.S. deficit is established for excess, and allows too much consumer credit, less well recognized, too much credit environment. In the current war of words in Congress, there is no evidence of unethical lending that people could not afford it encouraged to invest in the American dream. That 's, which led to the property crash and the financial crisis. That has completely disappeared from the political argument.

From people I did not hear about the need for wealthy people to change their habits. Of course there are many worthy "green shoots" how "locavore" movement or the "Greening the campus" initiative at the university I was visiting, where a newly appointed Sustainability Officer tries heroically cut energy consumption. But people like him have their work before. The entire East Coast and the Rust Belt are big, shocking landscapes, to which many Americans seem to forget. This is a society that has lived on not only its economic resources, but those of his environment as evidenced by the hundreds of miles of abandoned buildings, abandoned cars and endless highways.

But living the American dream. You 're either in or out of it. As a means out of poverty. Individual lifestyles boom or bust. In the UK, I know many people who reject consumerism, to engage in poorly paid work or political environment. We view them as more honest. In the U.S., if you don 't have money you don' t count.

Nothing to suggest it, we 've come to the right it was. Far from it. David Cameron, the politicians listen to most often referencing saving measures, is not it linked a vision for a green economy. And the relaxation of planning controls that have the potential, which garbage would be environmental, such a case. But at least words like frugality, simplicity and sustainability don 't such a negative connotation. They suggest that we have at least one place of work. In the United States, the ideological mindset of these negative conditions, which in turn is the future bleak. My problem isn 't just mounting government expenditures, but ultimately are the real costs of the American way of life. ? Guardian News & Media Limited 2011 | Use of this content is subject to our Terms & Conditions | More Feeds


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