Wednesday 28 December 2011

2012: a year to remember

This promises to be a financially painful year for many of us, as unemployment rises and tax increases bite. Though these will not worry me if is correct in its prediction that I will die on 4 February. Irritatingly, it does not specify at what time.

If it proves to be wrong (and the same website did advise my older brother that he had already been dead for a decade) I look forward to the birth of my second son later in February, and to the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee celebrations in June. Creating a welcome boom for Chinese producers of bunting and commemorative plates.

Which brings me to an uncharacteristically serious point. We do not have to accept the inevitability of globalisation exporting our jobs. We could all do more to buy locally made and grown stuff from local retailers, and to tighten our focus on buying only what we actually need.

The ‘savings’ made by cashing in on special offers at distant hypermarkets are every bit as illusory as the claims of constantly improving academic attainment, risk-free defence cuts or the affordability of free health care from the cradle to the grave when these are now around a century apart. Though maybe not for me ...

Keith Hann is a financial PR from Northumberland, a regular Journal columnist and a born optimist:

Originally published in The Journal, Newcastle upon Tyne.

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