This week on Facebook: Covid-19 is very much a global political and commercial pandemic and I am posting political and economic articles related to Covid-19¹², known globally as the coronavirus. My reprise posts on the fiscal crises that the world finds itself in post the introduction of fiat money in 1971 — the advent of global deficit financing and a global fiscal deficit are covered by this global pandemic.
A financial and economic crisis will tend to arise from a fiscal deficit if government debt levels contribute to a loss of market confidence in a national economy, reflected in turn in instability in currency and financial markets and stagnation in domestic output. A political and social crisis will tend to arise if both the fiscal deficit itself and the necessary corrective measure implemented to eliminate that deficit result in further losses of employment and output, falling living standards, and rising poverty. Britannica — Fiscal Crises
I did mention a previous pandemic (the Black Death) when I was writing about Full Employment. The commercial and hence political effects of the Black Death led to the Statute Of Labourers in 1351. Nowadays, Covid-19 may lead to the same competition for labour as occurred the 14th century, this time accompanied by an increase in global social mobility.
Some capitalist countries have recently introduced the Zero Hours Contract and there is direct link between the concept of full employment, with the measures taken by a public administration to achieve it, or the measures taken to mitigate the lack of it. Whether or not Covid-19 results in the obsolescence of the zero hours contract, it will inevitably lead to the global revisions of any social service programmes which, in turn, are likely to lead to global political and social crises.
Money is the commodity accepted by general consent as a medium of economic exchange. It is the medium in which values are expressed; circulating anonymously from person to person and country to country, it facilitates trade and it is the principal measure of wealth.The global introduction of fiat money in 1971 had the effect of increasing and removing any limit to the amount of money notionally available to public administrations, something that I covered in my post Cassandra on Money & Debt. The Covid-19 pandemic has, quite literally, removed any limit to the amount of money that public administrations can raise internally (the external raising of money by a State depends very much on how its wealth is measured globally). As I remarked in my post UK Fiscal Incompetence:
The world’s current governments didn’t really need an excuse to go on a spending spree. But in the coronavirus epidemic, they’ve now got one. Expect to be showered with cash. Coronavirus is the ideal excuse for governments to blow the budget
So who does this ‘shower of cash’ go to? Whoever it is you can be sure that the source of money for this spending spree will be the taxpayer, both directly and indirectly. Those on a social welfare programmes and public funded pensions are unlikely receive any cash directly at all, even when the inflationary effects of the public administration’s actions become a State matter prompted by the actions of social news media. Proving (yet again) that, ‘we are NOT all in this together!’
Globally there will be recovery from this pandemic leading to a global scramble for growth and the introduction of internal austerity measures and external beggar thy neighbour policies. Whether or not this leads to a revised Statute of Labourers, or revised Zero Hours Contracts and increases in global social mobility — I can only speculate! The one thing that I am quite certain about is that Covid-19 will create revisions to State social service programmes, to deal with the State’s inflationary measures undertaken by their public administrations. Covid-19 has already created global changes to the wealth and health of all nations.
Perhaps more importantly, around the world, governments laid out plans to do “whatever it takes” to keep economies ticking over while the coronavirus shuts down activity across the world. Will these moves be enough?
1. How the world’s political artists are depicting the covid-19 pandemic: As the coronavirus pandemic spreads and intensifies, the editorial art spawned by the crisis is growing starker, with jokes about hoarding toilet paper giving way to grimmer images of an infected globe.
2. Social media — both a blessing and a curse during coronavirus pandemic: Western digital corporations and social media platforms (Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, Instagram, Snapchat and Reddit) and their Chinese equivalents (WeChat, Weibo, Tencent and Toutiao) are at the heart of this crisis. These platforms act as facilitators and multipliers of COVID-19-related misinformation.
3. How China is reshaping the coronavirus narrative: We looked at China’s expansive propaganda system aimed at foreigners and analysed thousands of English-language tweets from state media and diplomats. Here are the coronavirus messages China is projecting to the world.
4. How COVID-19 is altering our conception of citizenship: The rapid spread of the coronavirus has wrecked human mobility, and profoundly disrupted the daily lives of millions of people worldwide. Its effects are mirrored in policies such as evacuations from affected areas or spaces, travel restrictions, and confinement in quarantines, but also in social and behavioural practices ranging from panic-shopping to the alteration of greeting customs that entail physical contact.
5. Could coronavirus bring about the ‘waning of globalisation’? Pandemics are not just passing tragedies of sickness and death. The omnipresence of such mass-scale threats, and the uncertainty and fear that accompany them, lead to new behaviors and beliefs. People become both more suspicious and more credulous. Above all, they become less willing to engage with anything that seems foreign or strange.
Referenced Articles Books & Definitions:
- A bold text subscript above and preceding a title below (¹·²·³), refers to a book, pdf, podcast, video, slide show and a download url that is usually free.
- Brackets containing a number e.g. (1) reference a particular included article (1-5).
- A link (url), which usually includes the title, are to an included source.
- The intended context of words, idioms, phrases, have their links in italics.
- A long read url* (when used below) is followed by a superscript asterisk.
- Occasionally Open University (OU) free courses are cited.
- JSTOR lets you set up a free account allowing you to have 6 (interchangeable) books stored that you can read online.
¹Financial And Commercial Considerations For Successfully Navigating COVID-19 (url/pdf): Because the lasting impact and full scope of COVID-19 remains largely unknown, companies must be prepared to deal with any challenges that may arise, particularly those that could result in unforeseen financial distress.
²The political and economic perspective of COVID-19 (url*): Most of us haven’t experienced anything similar to the current situation. Schools, universities, shops, bars, restaurants and other recreational facilities are closed for the next couple of weeks in many countries around the world
A.P. Herbert AI Albert Haddock Banks blog book books budget budget deficit C.S. Lewis censorship Charles Dickens China Civil Service constitution Crime CRT cryptocurrency CWG debt deficit democracy economics education ethics EU euro fiat money Film France freedom of expression gdp government history human-rights internet J M Keynes language Law Ludwig Von Mises Margaret Thatcher Matt morality music Musical national debt New Labour NHS opinion parody personal PFI poetry police Police & Crime Commissioners politics Quantitative Easing research school Screwtape Sir Ethelred Rutt K.C. social-media Social Media Social Welfare statistics T.E. Utley taxation terrorism Thatcher UK Unemployment USA Victor Hugo war war on terror
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