What are “normal times”?

OED – Normal: ‘Conforming to a standard; usual, typical, or expected’
Origin: Mid 17th century (in the sense ‘right-angled’): from Latin normalis, from norma ‘carpenter’s square’

The phrase “normal times” is being used like it will be the inevitable derivative of current political policy. Are we to consider the present, then, as extra time or injury time, I wonder…

For, surely, to any observant witness, aren’t the times we are living in, now, the standard condition under which Osborne and neoconservatives, generally, wish to keep us, since the typical approach to our socio-economic trauma has been to mostly re-create and build on the same stinking shit that caused so much of this unnecessary mess in the first place? The considerable number of people who are and are yet to be worse off are just the collateral damage of neoliberal economic warfare, aren’t they?

Those of us who have lived long enough all know that it costs more, both economically and societally, not to invest in our collective interest and everyone’s well-being; that the willing and proper investment in people, services and infrastructure are the basic building blocks of national security and prosperity. False economy, in order to serve a crony agenda is an irresistible default to these conmen. It attracts them like a super-strength magnet and pulls the rest of us down the plug hole.

Every time one of these know-nothings crows about how they are “fixing the roof while the sun is shining” I want to scream in their ignorant, smirking face: What bloody roof? You’re dismantling it! In the howling wind and rain!

And don’t get me started on the foundations… Notice how the focus is always on the top of this metaphorical house, as though it were the only protective action required and as though the deep foundations of social fabric that are being wantonly smashed to pieces were irrelevant.

Are not these the times of right-angled, status quo preservation? I feel gravely injured by this dumb will to entropy and, when I consider how this state of affairs has been deliberately, eagerly manufactured over decades, no matter the political colour and, when I see the continual lack of intellectual curiosity in so many of our most prominent journalicians, I can’t help but conclude that this economic time – now – is the intended normal.

 

[Credibility Gap: “Fiscal responsibility acts are instruments of the fiscally irresponsible to con the public.” George Osborne, 2010 and now 2015]

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