Tuesday, March 21, 2006

Market Forces

A character's monologue from Richard Morgan's novel Market Forces, updated a little to be more appropriate for the present (as opposed to looking back from the future):
Do you really think we can afford to have the developing world develop? You think we could survive the rise of a modern, articulated Chinese superpower? You think we could manage an Africa full of countries run by intelligent, uncorrupted democrats? Just imagine it for a moment. Whole populations getting educated, and healthy, and secure, and aspirational. We can't afford these things to happen. Who's going to make our shoes and shirts? Who's going to supply us with cheap labor? Who's going to buy our weapons?

An educated middle class doesn't want to spend eleven hours a day bent over a stitching machine.They aren't going to work the seaweed farms and the paddy fields till their feet rot. They aren't going to live next door to a fuel-rod dump and shut up about it. They're going to want prosperity. Just like they've seen it on TV.

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