Back when my career had to do with public finance, I thought of how public expenditures continue to increase yearly. Revenues are often in a shortfall and either indebtedness has to be incurred or additional taxes have to be imposed to breach the deficit.
I thought of how governments are hard pressed to deliver the goods and services needed by a continuously growing global population. The question is not only in regard to the efficiency (or inefficiency) of the bureaucracy; it also has to do with the availability of needed resources.
How much oil is left to run factories, fly planes, and enable us to go to work? How much land is left to grow food on? How much of planet earth do we have left to exploit?
Much of the current armed conflicts we see in the world may seem religious or cultural in nature but really, underlying those are economic reasons: the control of vital resources and survival.
I dread to think of a scenario where more countries or even ethnic groups wage war in the face of diminishing resources and rising population growth. Surely, that can only be a formula for Armageddon.
But there may be hope. Although those pitifully stuck in boxes and labels might either cringe or frantically motion the sign of the cross at the mere mention of a "New World Order," mankind does need a paradigm shift in the way economies are ran and businesses and commerce, conducted so that we do not drive ourselves towards annihilation.
Perhaps there may be an "evolved" form of capitalism of which the hallmark is authentic cooperation rather than mindless competition and reckless exploitation. Perhaps there is a way we can be selfless and more considerate of the many who lack even the basic necessities of life.
Either that or, as governments and even enterprising individuals have been doing, we continue to look elsewhere for a solution -- outside Planet Earth.
In 2009, a Canadian multi-millionaire was said to have paid $40 million to travel in space for 11 days aboard the spaceship Soyuz. Wait, do not be discouraged. Another company will reportedly charge $200,000 for a seat in an upcoming craft that it is developing.
Would you prefer to be in First Class or Economy?
Below is a photo of prototypes of space ships in the works.
- Ariel Murphy