Posts Tagged ‘J curve’

Hope lies with the (eastern) proles

15/12/2011, 07:59:14 AM

by Jonathan Todd

In the summer between the Arab Spring and the European Autumn, my wife and I were naturally delighted about the birth of our first child, Stanley, which helped push the world’s population over 7 billion.

It is autumn in Europe because, notwithstanding the UK’s estrangement under David Cameron, the comparisons between the euro and the titanic continue to hold water. And they will continue to unless the euro is fundamentally reformed.

Cameron has swallowed the City of London’s line on a financial transactions tax. This tax would not be the end of the universe. Indeed, it could contribute towards a rebalancing of the UK economy. However, the move towards this tax seems driven by a determination to punish “Anglo-Saxon capitalism” for the euro’s failings, rather than correct the structural flaws within the currency union, which remain largely in place.

In spite of the persistence of repression in Egypt, Syria and elsewhere, spring continues in the Arab world, as democratic flowerings have begun that seem to have an irresistible force. These flowerings were never going to be quick and painless, but the drawn-out process of moving from the left to the right of Ian Bremmer’s J Curve.

Stanley is named after his great-grandfather, who remains as optimistic about America as he did when he emigrated there from Poland over 70 years ago. Hope carried him across the Atlantic. Now hope moves eastwards. Hope powered the Arab Spring, the protests in Russia and the rise of the BRICs. In the decade since the term BRIC was invented these countries have contributed seven UKs (2001 vintage) to the global economy.


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