Monday, 21 May 2012


Recently Professor George Christodoulakis from the Manchester Business School said of the Euro crisis: “We need a return to logic.” George is clearly very clever. He is also very, very stupid. His prescription is the same as saying to a dying patient “pull yourself together ….you’re going to die…get over it.”

Sorry George. Logic lost. It’s the time for emotion.

Death it struck me as I read many tortured attempts at economic metaphors is the nearest to describe what’s happening (Hugo Rifkink made fun of himself in last week’s Times trying them – “spend thrift nephew, Greece- and rich aunt, Fraulein Germany” – and none of them worked.)

Sadly I have been a spectator of lingering death for some of my life. What happens generally is the patient gets ill, then gets a bit better, then gets very ill and a mournful prognosis is sort of given…when I say “sort of” no one in the room as the surgeon woefully mumbles quite catches his meaning. At best this is not very good news. At worst…well, we are always deaf to the bad news. Simply and literally we don’t take it in.
What then happens is a long, slow deterioration. The patient loses weight, loses their looks, slightly loses their grasp on reality but all very slowly. Those closest to them a bit like Daily Express readers are grumbly about the slow progress towards improvement and blame someone else “personally I blame the Welsh” to nods of bemused agreement.

The end game is sudden, dramatic, bloody and bloody awful.

It only struck me as I discarded my copy of the Daily Express last week and binned the leeks that this is now where we are in Europe. There is no return to normality, there is no magic medicine and there is no surgery heroic enough not to also kill the patient whilst curing the disease.

This is not to say there isn’t life after death. It doesn’t mean there isn’t a new beginning. But it will take time, a long time. No one is prepared to really acknowledge this or to discard everything else to prepare for and deal with the European funeral.

Maybe having read this my reputation as an optimist will be tarnished somewhat. Maybe I’m too influenced by the comic book realities underlying “The Hunger Games” which as a zeitgeist follower I read this week.
It’s time to get emotional. The funeral will probably be on June 17th at the time of the next Greek elections but the patient could be in a coma by then.

Have a happy week and enjoy the Private Eye cover after 9/11. Had he actually said this, it would have been the smartest thing George – Bush in this case- ever said.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

This is a complete rubbish article. Nonsense.