Like most folks, the news of upcoming G8 summit in bonnie Scotland certainly raises both hope and dread. There is the romance of celebrity protest surrounding the event – the likes of Sir Bob Geldof (cool factor +1) and the ubiquitous Bono (cool factor + 8) pushing the agenda of our modern day ‘Bob-esque’ reorg consultants – Mr. Blair and Mr. Bush (cool factors – 9 and falling). The question that drives the discussion ( I would argue THE question that drives every discussion in one way or another) is the nature of love and its expression. To put a sharper point on it – how do we express love in the current economic crisis surrounding the 2/3rd world and the debt load? Is the loving act of 1st world countries to ‘forgive’ the debt? Is the loving act to help developing countries to better manage their resources by intervening in their affairs and ‘managing’ their debt load from within? Is the loving thing to let them struggle and grow strong of their own accord and thereby earn the respect of the planet by pulling themselves up by their boot straps and paying back the debt in full?
Granted, to make this difficult issue even more complex, there are huge differences of opinion with regards to whether we are in a global upturn or downturn economically. Our own checking accounts notwithstanding, top economists such as NYU Prof Nouriel Roubini continue to point to a ever-plummeting downward economic spiral – China’s currency is undervalued, the US spending continues to soar without any significant global market penetration to support such excess debt increases, the EU is falling apart, etc.
Is the act of love to forgive debt as a gesture of self-forgiveness for the debt we continue to create?
I would love to hear your thoughts on this one…