GDP 4: The chocolate river: on how the first world is having withdrawal symptoms!

Continued from: GDP 3: Rise of consumerism

Imagine 210 houses on a long road along a river of chocolate and one house on the opposite side of the river. There was one person living in each. A truck has to supply chocolate to all the houses. The first person who gets hold of the hose was the guy in the lonely house on the other side of the river. He does not let it go and begins to fill every nook and corner of the house and drinks as much as he could before he would pass it to the houses on the other side of the river. But the truck was never passed and the guy made a clever deal that instead of passing the truck, he offered chocolate as commission to whomever who will work to maintain his house. Having the truck under his control and living far away, the first person could easily ignore any protests from other people. Seeing the truck is not coming to them, one by people tried to build their own truck to get access to the river. People who knew how to build a hose got it by themselves in the sizes they could make, but their sizes were nothing comparable to the first truck. Despite their small hose sizes, if one would throw a hose to the river, the other would protest and complain that the former is taking too much chocolate. Some said that they will not live in their own home and move to the home of the guy with a bigger hose. Some established partnerships and did teamwork to extract as much chocolate. Years went by. The person at the first house where the truck did not move becomes so obese and laggard. He could neither move to lift the hose nor carry the items to maintain the truck.

Due to his incapability, he starts to demand more work from the other people, but for the same amount of commission. With growing obesity, he even needed assistance every time if he wanted to just eat a chocolate. For extra support, he hires a person from house 11*. The guy was willing to help, but he too wanted a chocolate commission if he should help the obese guy. The obese guy accepted and lets the guy do the work. Seeing that the person 11 is working for cheap, he gives more work to this guy so that he could save more chocolate. The guy from house 11 becomes skilled overtime that on top of serving the house 1, he builds his own truck which is modern and easy to maintain. At some point Person 11 announces to the obese guy that he does not want to work anymore for him. Person 11 quitting contract made him devastated as he found it difficult to get the job done by himself. He had lost his skills, as he did not keep in touch with the work. All the time he was just watching TV, eating lots of chocolate and letting the others do the work. Now he couldn’t even move and get to his truck. Moreover his truck needed a repair as it has become old. Person 11 at a point of time decided to invite the other house mates to his house for work and for a better commission. Person 11’s modern truck got so much attention, that the other people couldn’t stop speculating on how he could have built this. Although they were happy that were promised better pay, some were questioning if the truck was just painted modern on the outside and that he is just offering to pay more to cut the work at house 1. In any case, the better pay starts to talk and one by one the housemates start to call quit with the house 1 and started to move to Person 11. Person 11 becomes rich soon. Now the obese guy is screaming from the other side of the river that person 11 is useless and that he was a better owner and he had a better truck. People turned and laughed at him, but their legs were moving towards person 11’s house*.

The United States of America is the representation of the first house and Trump is a perfect and literal representative of the obese child in the story! I don’t blame and make fun of Trump for what he is! He is simply an obvious output of such an obese economy! This does not make Obama or any other American president any good. They with a conservative mask were simply fuelling the consumerist attitude over time. Once the signs of losing the truck started to arise, it is just natural that an aggressive person, who would fight to get back the truck, would be chosen by the people. Real problem is the economic source: when it goes away, the problem reflects in terms of nationalist identity as to who really belongs to the house and who not. Dwindling resources simply ensure a fight for the remaining share. World over, this story of obesity is what the first world countries are going through now and the surge of right wings are just an indication of their withdrawal symptoms of letting the truck moving to a different house! With Trump leading the rise, the right wing party AfD is gaining so much popularity in Germany, Brazil has chosen its recent right wing president, Austria has its youngest right wing chancellor and this list is just showing signs of increasing in the west. Right winged parties does not necessarily mean that it’s doomsday. If the new party in power should insist on consumerism i.e. work for the same obese share of chocolate that they were demanding till today, they are set to fall on their face. At the time when they are obese and costly, creating jobs in the country without reducing the lifestyle will most probably backfire. As an alternative, if they should opt for a sharing or minimal economic model, than a consumerist model, they can survive. Also whether it’s a right wing or a left wing, any party taking the mantle will have the following three biggest threats to tackle.

To be continued.. GDP 5: Three biggest threats

* China was at position 11 in world GDP list in 1990’s. Now it’s at number 2. China found its chocolate source. Given the fact that it was pumping it to the limit, only time can say how long this growth can last. Resources are finite after all.

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