|Phnom Penh, January 5 2007
Alas, the world will not become much happier in the coming year.
Elites are still fighting each other for a bigger part of the cheese in wars in which only masspeople die.
Only when masspeople will point their arrows at the elite and the eliteworld, the possibility will arise for a New World in which all people have equal status.
Superficially masspeople seem to be happy but the everlasting hunger, avoidable illnesses and poverty in the Third World, the secondary position of women all over the world or the rising number of people who need psychiatric assistance show that real happiness is still far away.
It is a fact that in the last twenty years the rich have become much richer. Some poor people have also improved their living standard but many still live on a dollar a day.
And we see already the first signs of a new financial crisis. The stagnating American economy, the fall of the dollar, or the increasing American debt create a climate in which crises easily can come around.
The fall of the Thai exchange by 20 percent is a first concrete sign that the elitist economy is basically wrong. And in a crisis the rich hardly suffer. The poor bear the brunt of the downfall because they do not have any reserves to fall back on.
But anyhow I wish you a happy New Year and I hope you distance yourself from any elite.
Yours truly, Joost van Steenis