Well.... it has been predicted, discussed, speculated upon, and in some cases contested to be having any significant detrimental impact; but now, if you can keep your mind withdrawn from the nonsense of infidelity scandals and election hysteria, it's very difficult to ignore that accumitively the effects of the recession have been pretty aweful so far. I'm not entirely sure in detail on how the rest of the world stands, but even for the likes of those of us not fully engaged in politics, it is absolutely clear that people are beginning to suffer. I've had conversations with people at the Job Centre; they are becoming demoralised at the lack of work available to them, desperate at the farce of temporary and part time contracts that barely cover the costs of travel and basic living, and fed up with living a life where you're made to feel useless because of the uselessness and partiality of our economic and political systems.
Some more job losses for the mix: the Corus steelworks plant in Teesside being closed will see that 1600 people loose their jobs, as well as British Airways waving goodbye to 2000 cabin crew and introducing pay cuts in their place. I'm sure there's probably more going on too, and as it stands there is currently more unemployed than there has been since Labour got into power, and that statistic is worsening weekly.
Now, the way I see it, things are going to continue in this fashion of swift economic decomposition, financial tension for the vast majority, and systemic suffering for the poor majority as a consequence of this. If this is the case, we collectively need to start considering a new game plan, and instigate it with immediate effect. Even if it's not that case, let's just do it anyway; capitalism is a viscious beast that needs to be neutralised and locked away forever!!!
There's recently been a big push nationally to boost Union activity and encourage people to join up and stand up where ever necessary to demand their rights, and this is undoubtedly something that needs to continue and build momentum as economic conditions deteriorate, but I feel that as important as these activities are, there is more that needs to be done.
As companies continue to strive for more and more profit, and more people loose their jobs because of this, with a limitted number of jobs available to people, and the benefit system straining as more people become jobless, we are undoubtedly going to have to look elsewhere for provisions and security. This is where real social networks need to come in, and community building is something that is going to have to become a part of the day to day realities of the near future. As much as speaking to new people, working with strangers and co-operating productively is a terrifying prospect for most of us, these are just things are we're going to have to get used to.
There needs to be a concrete network of support in every city available for people to depend on, and a way in which people can find out about and experience alternative ways of living; because the way things are going - there is no alternative. If there's no jobs there's no work, if there's no conventional work there's no money, if there's cuts to the benefit system people need to get by on less. Most people don't realise that all you need to live and be content is food, water, shelter, friends / a community, routine and activity ( plus culture and creativity for the ultimate balance). So for those of us that are able to, these are some things we should all be looking into being able to provide for one another - the resources are out there, and we have the people; now it's time to prioritise those of us that are suffering RIGHT NOW and work together in EVERY capacity we can to protect those made to suffer by the greed and ignorance of the ruling classes and the crippling self riteousness of social and political 'activists'.
Depending on the Nanny State, Corporations and politics as we know it is not good enough.