My own theoretical work long ago showed the flaws in Schumpeter’s analysis, and now empirical results provide strong confirmation. Today’s markets are characterized by the persistence of high monopoly profits…If markets are fundamentally efficient and fair, there is little that even the best of governments could do to improve matters. But if markets are based on exploitation, the rationale for laissez-faire disappears. Indeed, in that case, the battle against entrenched power is not only a battle for democracy; it is also a battle for efficiency and shared prosperity – Monopoly’s New Era by Joseph E. Stiglitz
Although billions of dollars have been invested by successive governments to educate Barbadians there has been the lack of a quality national discussion about financial issues -devoid of political clap trap. In the media there is only Patrick Hoyos who shine in the land of the blind, on the Hill they all seem to be aligned to a political party or have become mired in the theory of the discipline.
After nine years and counting behind the dashboard of BU it is patently evident this deficiency has come back to haunt the country. For eight long years of economic challenge the discourse about the economy has been underpinned by the rhetoric of who is to blame B or D. There is the saying that one should never allow a good crisis go to waste. It is difficult for the sensible and the independent among us to discern an economic philosophy developed by the political and academic leaders of Barbados.
The article quoted by the Nobel Memorial Prize in Economic Sciences Joseph E. Stiglitz should encourage educated Barbadians to demand more from our educated class. The purpose of education ‘has a two-fold function to perform in the life of man and in society: the one is utility and the other is culture. Education must enable a man to become more efficient, to achieve with increasing facility the legitimate goals of his life’. BU is resigned to the view that our educated class has been failing Barbados. The KPI to measure performance in the education system should be how well our key agencies in the country are performing whether the learning institutions, state agencies, judicial system, political parties, financial system, sports organizations, non governmental organizations etc.
The last two sentences by Joseph Stiglitz should give all Barbadians reason to pause.
But if markets are based on exploitation, the rationale for laissez-faire disappears. Indeed, in that case, the battle against entrenched power is not only a battle for democracy; it is also a battle for efficiency and shared prosperity.
What comes to mind is the heavy Canadian concentration of ownership in the banking sector, the heavy concentration of Trinidadian ownership in the distribution and retail sectors, the heavy concentration of ownership of Trinidadian ownership of the media sector/ The only spaces in the economy controlled by locals are the Church and the Credit Unions. Why has the level of investment in education not given us the savoir to lead enterprises in key sectors of the economy? Why has the level of investment not given us the savoir to implement top drawer social policy to safeguard the quality of life Barbadians have become accustomed.
Lastly, who will step forward from our indigenous educated class to be the Joseph Stiglitz? What is today’s plan for Barbados to meet the future.