Das Jahr des rationalen Pessimismus

NEW YORK – Jemand meinte kürzlich, das beste am Jahr 2011 sei, dass es vermutlich besser war als 2012. Es gab zwar viel Besorgnis über den politischen Stillstand in den USA, aber für Amerika und den Rest der Welt hätte es noch schlimmer kommen können: Die Republikaner hätten sich mit ihrem Sparprogramm bei gleichzeitiger Bevorzugung der Reichen durchsetzen können. Die automatischen Kosteneinsparungen werden nicht vor 2013 stattfinden, was bedeutet, dass die Wirtschaft 2012 noch eine Schonfrist genießt.

Zwei weitere positive Aspekte aus 2011: Die USA scheinen endlich den gähnenden Abgrund zwischen den Reichen und den Anderen – zwischen dem obersten einen Prozent und dem Rest – wahrzunehmen. Und die Protestbewegungen der Jugend, vom arabischen Frühling über die spanischen indignados hin zu den Wall-Street-Besetzern, haben offengelegt, dass mit dem kapitalistischen System etwas absolut nicht in Ordnung ist.

Aller Wahrscheinlichkeit nach werden sich aber die diesjährigen wirtschaftlichen und politischen Probleme der USA und Europas – die bis jetzt völlig falsch angegangen wurden – 2012 weiter verschlimmern. Vorhersagen für das folgende Jahr hängen mehr als üblich von der Politik ab – vom Ergebnis des Stillstandes in den USA und von der Fähigkeit der europäischen Politiker, mit der Euro-Krise umzugehen. Wirtschaftliche Prognosen sind schon schwer genug, aber bei politischen Voraussagen sind unsere Kristallkugeln noch stärker vernebelt. Trotzdem möchte ich hier mein Möglichstes tun.

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