It is Obvious

Chris Rick has got altogether too much to say

With sympathy

Posted by chrisrick13 on February 8, 2011

It is obvious: live in the future

I still have sympathy for politicians of whatever colour.  They sometimes have power which they struggled mightily to get, but when they have it there is not much they can do with it.The economy of the nation is one that I bleat about lots.  They have conflicting advice, poor information and few available tools.  Anything that they do has a long lead time meaning that they can’t act promptly and often will not see the results of their endeavours until after they are out of power when the opposition takes all the credit or blames them.  I wonder why they do it.

However that is not the only aspect to having power.  There is another much more important task for them and it is one that receives a lot less publicity.  It is like the explorers of centuries ago.  Set off from England looking for North America, get your course one degree wrong and by the time you cross the atlantic you are in Brazil.  So it is with policies enacted today having a significant effect many years hence.

There are many examples.  In the 40’s the NHS was created.  It was said at the time that with the consequent improvements in the nation’s health that the cost would steadily reduce.  How different things could have been.  Our lengthening life expectancy is down to good sewers and vaccination programs.  The Victorians built the former and small teams of scientists for beans developed the vaccines.

The M1 and the rest of the motorway network has had a huge impact on life in this country.  It has allowed us as a nation to respond to economic demands in a flexible and cheap manner.  The rail network similarly…but for that we must again thank the Victorians and before.

North sea oil used to upset me.  Get it out the ground as fast as possible and spend it seemed to be the intent.  Why not keep it and pace its extraction over a hundred years?  Why was the decision made to flare off a lot of gas?  Big decisions that are affecting us now.

So with those and many other examples it is down to the government to find the clear winning policies and back them.  They can gather experts together from all over the world and perhaps come up with a few good policies.  The results will be seen in the future.

If they are unsure then they can ask the BBC to interview a few people on the street.

In the meantime I have a few ideas, or I wouldn’t be writing this.  Research into fusion power.  We are doing it already but not on a big enough scale.  Coal.  Start building coal power stations with socially acceptable handling of the pollution aspects…or simply don’t bother like the Chinese.  Education and training.  Famous words from Tony Blair but not much action.  This has two prongs.  First is bringing everyone up to a decent standard.  This has huge savings in social costs.  Second is getting our best thinkers to spend time doing it.  Put lots of money into higher education…and research.  It is a bit of a lottery, but the more tickets you have the better the chance of a big win.

I have a number of other interesting ideas that I will save until I am Prime Minister.

It is obvious: live in the future and you will make a better job of today.

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