An Economy for Hope

Enrique Lluch Frechina

(Madrid, Spain) The economist, university professor and Lay Missionary of the Holy Redeemer Enrique Lluch argues in the book “Una economía para la esperanza” (“An economy for hope”)  that an economic model is needed that “is put at the service of all the people who live now and who will live in the future”. According to the author, the coronavirus crisis confirms that there is “a stagnant and excluded society” that has been particularly affected.

“During this period of confinement it has become more evident that a growth-based economy like ours is rapidly collapsing,” said Cardinal Herrera, professor at the CEU University and member of the European Foundation for the Study and Ethical Reflection (Funderética). “That is why we have been proposing for a long time an economy based on different foundations, which would have better dealt with this crisis scenario”.

Furthermore, Lluch moves this debate away from the classic struggles between economic models, such as that between capitalism and communism: “We are bent to debate the market economy, whether capitalist or socialist; whether we want more or less intervention by the public sector or the market… But we do so without questioning the economicist paradigm in which we live, in which the economy is placed above everything else”.

Therefore, in the book “An economy for hope”, published by PPC, Lluch proposes concrete measures to replace the paradigm. The economist believes that the purpose of the system cannot be mere economic growth, but rather that all people have enough to live with dignity: “We must make a transition. The current economy has ceased to be at our service to demand servitude”.

As an example of a useful economic measure that would have been fundamental in the fight against the Covid-19, the author argues that “a more distributed production, closer to the places of consumption, would have avoided bottlenecks in distribution, such as those that have occurred with sanitary material”.

Finally, during the presentation of the book, held virtually, Lluch showed hope for the recovery of the environment during the confinement. “In just two months of shutdown, the environment has rapidly regenerated”. “With a different production model, effects such as increased inequalities would not have been so serious,” he concluded.

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