Measure of gloom about but let’s look on the bright side

EDITORIAL

As another Gisborne summer draws to an end there is a measure of gloom starting to develop on the New Zealand and world scenes that is both economic and political.

Last week’s decision of the Reserve Bank to cut interest rates again was matched by a decision of the European Central Bank to slash them even further.

Fears of worldwide deflation are growing and, with interest rates at historic lows — even negative for many countries — effective policy options for central banks are reducing.

Here in New Zealand there are always more people who want to borrow than those who want to save, and the latter face a growing conundrum. With interest rates continuing to fall, do they risk switching their savings to the sharemarket? Many older savers do not want to take that risk.

The political scene is not a lot better. The emergence of Donald Trump as a potential United States president is viewed with alarm around the globe.

If Trump cannot collect the 1237 delegates needed for the nomination at July’s Republican convention, there is a chance the other candidates, including those who have stopped campaigning but are still nominated, could converge against him.

If not, the world will look to Hillary Clinton — if she can finally shake off Bernie Sanders.

Elsewhere on the world scene the Middle East continues to fester, the refugee crisis mounts further and seems insoluble, Russia continues to be belligerent and the dotty North Korean leader Kim Jong Un is firing missiles.

But wait, things are never as bad as they seem. Here in New Zealand, thanks to geography, we do remain sheltered from most of the world’s turmoil. While it has its problems, our district remains a desirable place to be and people are moving here from offshore.

Not only that, we have the Rio games to look forward to with hopefully a lot of New Zealanders winning gold medals — and Gisborne’s brilliant summer weather is not quite over yet. Forget those gloomy commentators, keep calm and carry on.

As another Gisborne summer draws to an end there is a measure of gloom starting to develop on the New Zealand and world scenes that is both economic and political.

Last week’s decision of the Reserve Bank to cut interest rates again was matched by a decision of the European Central Bank to slash them even further.

Fears of worldwide deflation are growing and, with interest rates at historic lows — even negative for many countries — effective policy options for central banks are reducing.

Here in New Zealand there are always more people who want to borrow than those who want to save, and the latter face a growing conundrum. With interest rates continuing to fall, do they risk switching their savings to the sharemarket? Many older savers do not want to take that risk.

The political scene is not a lot better. The emergence of Donald Trump as a potential United States president is viewed with alarm around the globe.

If Trump cannot collect the 1237 delegates needed for the nomination at July’s Republican convention, there is a chance the other candidates, including those who have stopped campaigning but are still nominated, could converge against him.

If not, the world will look to Hillary Clinton — if she can finally shake off Bernie Sanders.

Elsewhere on the world scene the Middle East continues to fester, the refugee crisis mounts further and seems insoluble, Russia continues to be belligerent and the dotty North Korean leader Kim Jong Un is firing missiles.

But wait, things are never as bad as they seem. Here in New Zealand, thanks to geography, we do remain sheltered from most of the world’s turmoil. While it has its problems, our district remains a desirable place to be and people are moving here from offshore.

Not only that, we have the Rio games to look forward to with hopefully a lot of New Zealanders winning gold medals — and Gisborne’s brilliant summer weather is not quite over yet. Forget those gloomy commentators, keep calm and carry on.

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Bob Hughes - 3 years ago
Yes, sad to say a high measure of gloom (political, economic and environmental) does seem to hang over us. By all means, ?keep calm and carry on? but look at a bright side just the same ? without burying the issues that create that ?gloom? cloud.
Most caught up in the daily grind of life prefer to use any free time on personal stuff, and give very little thought to future consequences of anything. Also, we have these pages to expound what we think worthy of sharing.
Some issues are emotive like the flag we fly, careless left-behinds on seaside picnic tables, and the nitty gritty of council responsibilities, social services, citizens? wellbeing, local environmental matters, land damage, water quality etc. All important stuff.
For me it?s the big picture of how our thoughts and actions affect the planet?s eco-systems and the wellbeing of life to the future. When measures of gloom overwhelm me I find my bright side by escaping into an even bigger picture ? the relative insignificance of our existence as compared to all else that exists in our wonderful universe. I think of the 99 percent of my living body being simply: oxygen, carbon, hydrogen, nitrogen, calcium and phosphorus atoms. The very same stuff that fills the universe, aside from helium argon and the less abundant elements. I?m part of the cosmos and what I am made of will always will be ? the very same stuff that exists everywhere, all given mass by the Higgs boson subatomic particle (the ?God particle?).
Insignificant or not, with the briefness of time allotted to our species I am convinced we should treasure the chance to life we?ve been given. We need to treat our planet?s ecosystems and all that exists kindly so as many following generations as possible can enjoy times to come in the maximum comfort possible.
Mahatma Gandhi once said, ?The difference between what we do and what we are capable of doing would suffice to solve most of the world?s problems.?
Please ease up on our planet. The future is the most important thing we have.

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