Dec. 29th, 2008

peterbirks: (Default)
As I was clearing out the overflowing inbox after the Christmas break, I espied a press release from Canada Life which warned that "three out of four individuals believe they would not be able to maintain their current lifestyle for over a year if they were unable to work."

Which would appear to imply that a quarter of individuals could "maintain their current lifestyle" for a year, even without any money coming in.

That struck me as good news rather than bad. I mean, if you had asked a random selection of adults at any time in history how long they could maintain their lifestyle if the money stopped coming in, I doubt that 25% would have been able to say "a year or longer".

Of greater concern, of course, is not lack of cash, but lack of food. A more interesting question might be "how long would you be able to maintain your current lifestyle if the supply chain in the UK suddenly broke down"? My guess is about three days.

The huge concern at the moment seems to be that the French are taking over the UK nuclear power business and the Russians are controlling our gas supply, but no-one seems to have noticed how "just-in-time" our food distribution system has become and, indeed, how much of it is in the pay of Tesco, Asda, and the other supermarket majors.

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