- Date published:
9:13 am, January 25th, 2016 - 135 comments
Categories: capitalism, debt / deficit, Economy, economy, Financial markets, Globalisation, International, Media - Tags: collapse, economic risks, GFC 2
Not heard of all of this?
Well, if you are a resident of Aotearoa, you could be excused for not knowing the full story behind the crashing stock markets round the world and the start of the second 21st century Global Financial Crisis.
With the New Zealand mainstream media now firmly under corporate control, either directly or indirectly, its owners and managers are able to ensure the New Zealand people don’t get too much news about the economic tsunami that is starting to impact on the world. Instead, we continue to be swamped by news about Lorde, Max Key, emotional wedding hakas and whatever else the Stuff and the Herald’s jonolists can source from their Facebook, Instagram and Twitter feeds. Bingo, indeed!
When the news media’s owners do actually decide they have to make some comment on the ongoing collapse of oil prices and the world’s stock markets, ironically, it is often simply to put a positive spin on the whole story. Don’t worry New Zealand, keep calm, its good news, there’ll be cheaper petrol tomorrow!
I’d expect such dross from the corporate media, but what is depressing to witness is how our only state radio broadcaster, Radio New Zealand, has swiftly followed the party line. The National Party have swamped the RNZ board with on message toadies and it shows. The business section of Morning Report is now an embarrassment, where spokespeople from banks are treated as oracles of all wisdom that cannot be rigorously questioned. For example, on Thursday, as a sop to the news, Lynn Freeman wheeled out Brian Gaynor from Milford Assets to discuss the world’s economy.
In response to questions from Freeman about oil and stock markets, Gaynor’s disingenuous analysis could be summarised as ‘Keep Calm and Carry On’, which is in complete contradiction to the facts coming out of China, the Middle East, Europe and the U.S.A. The reality is the world is again on the brink of a financial meltdown and this time it can’t be blamed on dodgy real estate deals. Certainly, NZ will not be able to afford to paper over the economic cracks by massive borrowing. Not this time.
The fact is that New Zealand is highly vulnerable to any world economic slowdown. Our government debt has skyrocketed since Key and his crew have taken over. It’s over $120 billion. You can watch it grow here. In addition our private debt has soared. We Kiwis are slaves to mortgages, rent and credit cards.
One bright light in the gloom that is NZ’s media is Rod Oram, who provides more realistic and independent analysis and has talked more about his negative outlook in an interview on Stuff. In addition, if you want a really great summary of what’s actually going on, read Raúl Ilargi Meijer’s Why This Slump Has Legs.
Why isn’t big media informing us about what’s going on with the world’s economy? Are the owners and drivers of our media that shallow, that bound to their class interests, that they can’t bear to tell the truth?
Then buckle up, people, it’s going to be a rough landing.