Wednesday, 15 July 2009

The news today

Back to London.

Cooking dinner, I turn on the radio.

"Unemployment figures are 'truly hurrendous', the General Secretrary of the TUC said today. Unemployment has jumped by a record 281,000 and now stands at 2.4 million."

"Worst recession... 30,000 job cuts here... company going into administration there..."

For a moment I have a fleeting fancy that the whole thing is a set up to Get Gordon Brown. The poor bugger. Imagine it. You work your whole life, teeth knawing into the rope, with the burning, furious ambition to become PM. Finally you get there, become one of the most unsuccessful leaders in modern British history, and when your strongest card is your skills as an Economist and your excellent history as Chancellor of the Exchequer, the national and global economy falls to tatters around your desperately, hopelessly outstretched empty hands. 

Poor Gordon.

This is like a scene from a film that places the narrative in its historical context. Girl - sorry, 30 now. Woman comes home with shopping, turns on radio and begins to chop alone in London kitchen.

"Unemployment levels 'truly hurrendous'"...

"The UK has set targets to cut greenhouse gas emissions by 34% by 2020. The Energy secretary, Ed Milliband, has said that the UK will meet 25% of it's electricity needs through renewable sources by 2020."

These are the two headlines of the day.

A film from the future. Yes, it's a scene from a film that an ignored environmentalist from the 1970s sketched out, in which a woman comes home in July and chops her Peruvian asparagus and the two headlines are that the world economy is collapsing and that there are new national targets to reduce CO2 levels, which the script writer (and the woman) will believe to be woefully inadequate and, sadly, highly unlikely to be met.

Feels like the old world is crumbling.

Honestly, I think it's OK. The new world is also emerging.

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