Paul Lachine

La Seconde Grande Contraction

OXFORD – Pourquoi continuons-nous de qualifier la dernière crise financière de « Grande Récession » ? Après tout, le terme repose sur une grave erreur de diagnostic des problèmes auxquels sont confrontés les Etats-Unis et d'autres pays,  à l’origine des prévisions erronées et des politiques inappropriées.

L'expression « Grande Récession » répand l’idée selon laquelle l'économie actuelle suivrait les contours d'une récession classique, certes plus sévère – un peu comme l’on souffrirait d’un très mauvais rhume. C’est en cela que les prévisionnistes et les analystes qui, tout au long de la crise, ont tenté d’établir des analogies avec les récessions américaines d’après-guerre, sont dans l’erreur la plus grossière. Par ailleurs, bon nombre de décideurs politiques se sont appuyés sur la conviction qu’il s’agirait simplement en fin de compte d'une récession profonde, qu’il serait possible de maîtriser en recourant abondamment aux outils politiques conventionnels tels que les mesures budgétaires ou les plans de sauvetage massif.

Pourtant le vrai problème n’est autre que l’endettement catastrophique qui touche l’économie à l’échelle mondiale et auquel il sera impossible de remédier rapidement sans la mise en place d’un système de transfert de la richesse des créanciers aux débiteurs, en recourant soit au choix du non-paiement, soit de la répression financière, soit de l'inflation.

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