Sex, drugs and smuggling could give Italy’s economy a much-needed economic boost this year, as national statisticians incorporate the country’s underground markets into its calculations.
The Italian National Institute for Statistics said it would include drugs, prostitution and smuggling in its calculation of Italy’s 2014 GDP recalculation, which should help Prime Minister Matteo Renzi achieve his dream of narrowing the country’s deficit to 2.6 percent of the GDP, according to Bloomberg.
“The size of the shadow economy might have surprised some readers if they had seen these estimates two or three years ago,” they wrote. However, the recent Euro crisis “has shone a spotlight on problems in these countries with regard to tax collection and compliance and the problems are more widely known.”
Economists generally consider a “shadow economy” to include any unregistered economic activities that would contribute to the officially calculated gross national product if the activities were recorded. This includes everything from prostitution and arms trafficking to a neighborhood lemonade stand or employee discounts.
In Italy, this kind of activity accounts for roughly 20 percent of its total GDP, but these illegal activities account for roughly 18 percent of the entire European Union economy, according to a study by economists Friedrich Schneider and Colin Williams.
We are having more and more problems with trying to fit our imaginary economics models to reality and this is proven by the questionable, if not laughable, solutions we seek.
The estimate of the shadow economies of the world is always undervalued, who would like to face the fact that our illicit activities in Italy surpass our gross domestic product by double? No one.
And yet, those that have taken the time to really look into our shadow economy and include ALL THE fifty shades of gray of it, could not come up with anything less.
An illicit activity is just one not accounted for, and it is not legal, meaning it doesn’t follow the Law Scheme that we have designed in protection of the wealthy and powerful of the world; at the moment we don’t want to raise any moral question on what is illicit in an immoral world because many of these activities are what is left for some to participate in to Make a Living, aka prostitution, drugs, smuggling etc.
But there is another huge side to our illicit activities made up of bribes and illegal endeavours we are too ashamed or wary to count in, like untaxed profits hidden away in fiscal paradises by privileged corporations or individuals, or like the huge traffic of toxic waste, the sales of weapons to countries we have agreed should not have access to them (such as those that we come together and decide should not be in the dangerous position to defend and protect themselves and that should never by any means pose a threat to us while we threaten them under pretences such as democracy or freedom) and many other government secret programs which, by their very secret nature, cannot expose and account for their spending into the ‘mainstream economy’.
The point that it’s interesting to me about this whole story is that we are seeking to raise our GDP to increase our public spending, which is now tied into a ratio whose threshold seems made of a stonewall that can’t be overtaken, changed or amended in any way by rational people, even in the face of an austerity we can no longer bear.
Maybe it’s because we don’t have ‘rational people’ anywhere at the top -or at the bottom-, the ‘rational’ ones can’t be on top, we can see the random ones that come with common sense, like senator Bernie Sanders of Vermont, made to look like loony bins when they attempt to expose some of the gross and unacceptable inequalities of the system we live in, we live in a world where rationality is feared and exposed. Rationality as in what would be best for all is simply abhorred.
This is because those exposures are rare, nonexistent for the most part, so much so that when one comes and ‘tells it like it is’ we almost feel offended – how dare he/she- and start making up names to define him/her, to defile him/her, to make sure we degrade any effort put forward for real change.
Now, this decision to boost our economy with sex, drugs and illicit activities, so we can have access to more funds, is just ridiculous, first because the economy will not increase in size for real but an underwater part of it, already existing and participating at all effects in the money movement, will be taken into account just for the futile purpose of moving numbers on paper, second because we keep forgetting that whatever we are currently subjected to, including amusing economic models which have no connection to reality, all those make belief restrictions have been created by ourselves, all the prisons we are now attempting to escape one way or another are just ideas that have become models and then have become beliefs and we hold the key to change anytime we agree on something else ‘en masse’.
So, if we don’t raise an eyebrow pondering how we are planning to get more access to funds vs just asking that the current ratio limiting us from moving be raised simply because it’s currently not reasonable nor sustainable (while we work on dismantling for good what is obviously not working anyhow, in any way), and do not raise an eyebrow in questioning why if the submerged economy amounts to a declared 20% of our GDP we include only 3% just to get the approval to further spending and not the whole 20% or why not talk about the real 200% and wonder how did we get there in the first place, we have to ask ourselves why can’t we take a leap into the new from our shenanigans as we admit that we are just screwing around with meaningless numbers for the purpose of keeping everything in place as it is.
Many new economics models and proposals are emerging, proposals that consider Life above everything else and economics at its service, as it should always have been, we don’t need to raise imaginary numbers to walk through an imaginary crack in the system, we need to review this system, it’s not working and what we are doing can’t be sustained nor it should.
Seek solutions, ponder new ways we could make this world work, only when we will embrace a new vision we may take the required steps to walk it through to completion, by giving unconditionally what we would like for ourselves, access to a life worth living – for All.
Check out our Living Income Guaranteed Proposal, we can make it real, we were the designers of our outdated and unequal economic models and, as we awaken to the need to include all, we can redesign our world in support of Life, freeing everyone from the dam-nation of imaginary debt and make belief restrictive and inhumane economics. Join us.