Solutions by the people, for the people

Solutions by the people, for the people

Solutions by the people, for the people

#GS-02 Social Justice   #GS-03 Economy

For Mains:

The concerns regarding current state:

  • While ‘Keynesian’ and ‘Friedman’ economists differ on the level of government interference in the economy both agree that development to be measured in by the growth in GDP.
  • The Club of Rome in 1972 showed that pursuit of GDP growth was destroying the earth’s capacity to renew itself and provide resources for unbridled economic growth.
  • The “Thatcher-Reagan-Chicago” model of neo-liberal economics prevailed and citizens who earn their livelihoods by work, not investments of money, were often side-lined in national economic policies.
  • The 2008 global financial crisis revealed the fragility of insufficiently regulated markets.
  • While the various governments bailed out the “too large to fail” institutions, millions of common citizens, who lost homes and livelihoods, were barely compensated.
  • Moreover, some solutions to stabilise the global financial system, such as the austerity package imposed on Greece, harmed common citizens even further.

The rising demand for change:

  • While the ideology of “minimum government”, with balanced budgets and low inflation has prevailed, waves of protest have erupted around the world.
  • Citizens complain that the global financial system is unfair as it protects the interests of large corporations and the wealthiest people while common citizens fall further behind.
  • Demands to include the needs of ‘People’ in economic policy are becoming louder.
  • The “3P” slogan (People, Planet, and Profit) demands a paradigm shift in economics.

What can be done:

The five tracks that can be followed are:
  • ending poverty;
  • addressing gross inequality;
  • empowering women;
  • making food systems healthy for people and ecosystems; and
  • transitioning to clean energy.

The Challenges for implementing change:

  • Social tensions are already too high within many countries.
  • Their governments are unable to find fair solutions through conventional “democratic” processes, with elected assemblies, competing political parties, even public referendums.
  • Disillusionment with democratic institutions is increasing, even in democratic U.S. and Europe.
  • Authoritarian governments are coming to power in many countries, often supported by citizens, as alternatives.