"Austerity". It has a nice ring to it, evoking images of stoic families bonding together during the Depression and World War II to "help the boys" overseas and defeat the Axis villains threatening King and Country. Buck up, tighten our belts, give up the butter and sugar, and soon we'll all be celebrating V-J Day and looking forward to another fifty years of prosperity ahead.
Uh-uh. This is a different war, and we're on the losing side this time. This is a war between entitled, rapacious narcissists and sociopaths, and the other 90% of the world they are seeking to indenture and enslave. No, friends, we're not "millionaires just going through a rough patch". We're the intended victims, with targets on our backs. Why? Because we no longer have any value as commodities for corporate oligarchs who see themselves as being better than the rest of humanity and the world. The battlefields are our pilloried economies, strafed and carpet-bombed by capitalist exploitation.
Over the past century, our relative prosperity in the First World was, to a great extent, tied to the covenant between employers and workers. Workers would produce the products needed for sale so that the employers could make a reasonable profit selling the products to a reasonably paid core of consumers. In exchange, the employers would provide a livable income, health insurance, job security, and a comfortable retirement. The system was balanced and synergistic.
Then, deregulation gave carte blanche to unbridled capitalism, opening Pandora's Box, and releasing the demons of avarice and promoting insatiable greed as "good". The first step was the "outsourcing' and "offshoring' of manufacturing and production to other countries where labor costs were a fraction of those in the First World. In the short run, our shores were flooded with cheaply made, "affordable" goods and products and services. Low prices allowed Americans to indulge their own whetted appetites as rabid consumers, fueling the US economy. This phase resulted in an uneasy truce of negotiated concessions with the corporate oligarchy to maintain social programs and a safety net to keep the working and middle classes afloat.
With the decimation of job opportunities in the US and Europe over the past twenty years, more and more First World employees have found themselves out of work and in dire straits. They have fallen deeply in debt, and lacking the disposable income to feed the consumer economy, no longer able to play the consumer card to negotiate employer concessions. As our financial health has deteriorated, there has been growth in disposable income in many of the countries where corporations have moved their bases.
If consumers in the US and Europe don't have dollars or euros to spend anymore, there are plenty of yuan, rupees, dirhams, and pesos that can fill the coffers and raise the bottom line. First world citizens are no longer necessary in this most recent capitalist paradigm. They are not only superfluous, but a burden to the corporate oligarchy that no longer needs them either as workers or consumers. Hopes that our own human needs might be addressed, personally and professionally, are rapidly fading. The oligarchy would have no regrets if we continued to devolve into indentured servitude, or even death. In fact, this devolution may be the intended outcome of recent globalist policies.
The events in Greece are yet another example of this alarming change. To illustrate the process of corporate "smash and grab", we can try this analogy:
You've inherited a house. It's a very, very nice little house, with two cats in the yard, etc. You're the poor kid on the block, especially because you're only able to get a part-time job at minimum wage. To help with expenses for food and utilities, you've rented a room to a colleague, who is also scraping together enough cash for the monthly payment. You're not 'living large', but your modest lifestyle is stable.