An entire generation of business and industry managers have been trained and qualified on systems that are all about reducing costs.
Their ‘qualifications’ play up to the belief that very elaborate supply chains that take or harvest raw materials to be refined, and then to be made in to small parts, and then to be made into bigger parts, and then those parts to be made into perhaps cars or machines, and then those cars or machines appear at a dealership where we buy them – with all of the transportation, sorting and storage in between – going back and forth around the world – can be maintained ‘just in time’ and with the minimum of anything being stockpiled ‘on a shelf’ at any location along that supply line.
The system that has developed around this idea has not only affected the apparently low price of the products we buy at the end of the chain. It has also relied on pushing every part of every possible chain involved to the limit where minimising the cost of raw materials and production of any kind to the absolute minimum is concerned.
Profit has been the only driver. But even the drive for profit against the steps that are necessary in any supply chain have been further complicated and exploited by the reality that people and interests that are completely unnecessary to each supply chain have become involved.
So-called ‘agents’ step in to the middle of supply chains and buy goods and then sell them on at a profit – sometimes even years before they have even been grown or produced, making a profit and adding to the end costs – without adding any value to the end product. This often happens many times.
People or self-serving interests could not keep taking from and exploiting others in the way that this Globalised System has allowed them to do so without the cost to others becoming to high. In financial terms, that point has now been reached.
But the real price hasn’t just been the fact that the poorest and most vulnerable are no longer able to afford to live.
Neither is it the reality that poverty and hunger is an issue that more and more of us are about to face.
The real cost is that all of the ways of living and the localised systems that meant we always had access to the things that we genuinely need to survive each day have been removed or have been replaced, and this monstrosity of a system that works for no god other than profit, has been choking us all without us even realising, as it has aggressively been put in its place.
Today, we have literally reached a point where our farmers are not being paid what it costs them to produce foods at the fist stage of a supply chain. They are now choosing to stop producing, because it costs them too much to do so. Right at the very moment when worldwide food shortages are coming into view.
Today, we are perhaps weeks or months away from the point when trouble for us all will really begin.