Merriam-Webster announced that “austerity” saw more than 250,000 searches on the dictionary’s free online tool. This was probably due to greater coverage of the international debt crisis. Therefore, it was announced by the company as Word of the Year for 2010. Runners-up also included “pragmatic,” “moratorium,” “socialism,” and “bigot”. For example, the latter possibly motivated from the public use by former British Prime Minister Gordon Brown! see: http://www.saviarora.com/gordon-brown-bigot-comment/
Austerity, is a 14th century noun defined as “the quality or state of being austere” and “enforced or extreme economy,”
Does this mean that people look behind the meaning of words? Or, could it be that the public wish to verify their use, checking-up on those who potentially should know better? I will always remember the words from the Reverend Jesse Jackson when I interviewed him a few years ago (see http://www.saviarora.com/rev-jesse-jackson-and-the-rainbow-push-coalition/). He suggested (paraphrasing) that it is interesting some banks were quick to lend. However, now that there is an issue, they need to show both Corporate Responsibility and justice.
Now is the time for creative solutions to ensure that people, all who are hardworking can manage their existence and dreams.
Although nations in 2010 have focused on Austerity measures, have they:
- Identified their own areas of waste,
- Found potential investment in renewal strategies,
- Shown courage to support small businesses,
- Revisited private firms/contracts and associated procurement strategies
- Limited bankers bonuses (see: http://www.saviarora.com/bankers-bonuses-do-they-deserve-it/) and
- Started to seriously invest in youth based projects to give them hope rather than fueling their debt and despair?
I hope 2011 will be a year of creative renewal rather than a year of deepening crisis.