Douglas Carswell

12 NOV 2012

Cheer up! Things are getting better

It can seem a little depressing, can't it?

We are in the midst of a historic shift of power and capital from West to East, yet our politico-media elite lurch from one bout of self-absorption to the next.

Instead of contemplating a post-Euro future, they spent months obsessing about phone hacking.

Tens of millions of people are joining a global network of specialisation and exchange - surely one of the greatest stories of our time?  Yet today SW1 folk seem obsessed about the inner workings of the BBC.

Western wealth creators are becoming an endangered species, yet the political-media elite lie prostrate before the cult of Climate Change.

If they weren't quite so self-absorbed, these are some of the real news items they'd be focused on:

  • In the US, the shale gas revolution means a stable, abundant supply of energy, making the US relatively more competitive. US dependence on foreign energy imports has gone into dramatic reverse. Big implications, no?
  • Aqua culture take off. Within my life time, we have moved from a world in which most of the fish we ate was hunted, to one in which it will be mostly farmed. This could mean far more protein-rich food for million – indeed, billions – of people around the planet. Even bigger implications?

Driverless cars .... genetic engineering.... the list of improvements happening around the world is awesome. It is set to make the world a much, much better place.

Global GDP is growing faster now than at almost any time in human history. And – despite the bumps along the way – it is set to grow even faster. We are moving to a world of – in historic terms – unprecedented abundance.

So why not in Britain?  Why are so many game-changing advances passing us by? Why, at a time of rising living standards across the globe, are UK living standards falling? Why, when billions of cubic feet of gas lie trapped in the rock beneath us, are energy prices rising?

Rather than real business stories, in a parody of self-absorption, I see the BBC Business editor is today focused on what one senior BBC manager apparently said to another.

But cheer up. We might have a self-regarding political-media class presiding over us. Things will get better despite, rather than because, of their myopia ....

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