The package of assistance for Crunchies at risk of repossession has naturally raised the old question of personal responsibility and the virtue of the modest, sustainable lifestyle; of living within your means and other subversive Dickensian notions - often in newspapers which exist because of the advertising they sell which urges people to get in as much debt as possible. This hilarious wave of anti-consumerist moralising from the crunch-crazed high priests of Consumerism entirely misses the point.
Whatever Alastair Darling announces, the object of the exercise is not to 'bail out' the individuals, however feckless or misled by the massed propaganda of the market, but to bail out the market itself. Rescuing individuals from eviction will deliver a new generation of healthy consumers again, and prevent them from dropping out of the cycle of work and spend, thereby feeding the market again in due course. A consumer saved is a consumer earned, after all. And we can't have them all turning into disillusioned crusties, can we? And it's a short step from Crunchie to Crusty.
An added bonus is that this 'getting and spending' lays waste their powers as it did to every other generation, smothering understanding under a routine of drudgery and gluttony.
Help for mortgagees about to be made homeless is not the mythical Nanny State of right-wing fantasy, mollycoddling the individual and creating a nation of children, but a purely pragmatic way of mollycoddling a market which has feasted not wisely but too well, so that it can keep on doing so. crash08