Heteconomist Holiday Message 2013

Casting a wary eye over old posts, it became clear that this time last year a tradition in the form of an annual holiday message was launched. For bloggers especially taken with the Christmas/New Year spirit, a launch of this kind might make sense. Otherwise, it is surely unwise. It requires coming up with a message that is more or less the same as last year yet different enough to justify its existence.

With another year at an end, one task in composing a holiday message is to get into a nostalgic frame of mind. For the luckier ones among us, this might entail reflecting fondly on last year’s summer holidays, having at last graduated from high school or university. For the less fortunate, it involves going way back into the deep distant past, for instance to mid-seventies suburban somewhere or other, riding skateboards without a care, the wind whipping through our hair. Admittedly, Youth Group’s cover of Alphaville’s well known song from the eighties was recorded in 2006, but it took that long to capture the true essence of childhood in the seventies.

A decade or so later, in early or mid high school, the future seemed bright. In Australia, a Labor government had been elected and it was not yet clear to our young selves that, politically, things would only get progressively worse for the next thirty years, irrespective of which party was in office. It was as if our generation had ushered in neoliberalism, everything going increasingly pear shaped from about the time we were born onwards. But we were young and full of enthusiasm and believed that heaven on earth must be just around the corner.

Another task in presenting a holiday message is to come up with a Christmas song. There are only really two Christmas songs I like, and one of them was used last year. Unless somebody comes up with a new song in the next twelve months, all hope will be lost for the 2014 message. Frankly, not much thought was given to this possibility last year because the world was supposed to end. Remember? What a letdown that turned out to be. Just another of the neoliberal lies.

The Eurogliders were my favorite Australian band in the eighties, hence the previous video. You will be spared from watching a video of my favorite non-Australian band at the time, due to copyright restrictions, but will not be able to avoid the song itself, thanks to the many covers that have been made of it. The following video is somewhat reminiscent of the conditions under which heteconomist is put together. Think of a hapless guy in a room, with a laptop, surrounded by young independent musicians rehearsing and generally clowning around, threatening to impede the serious business of doing economics.

Hopefully everyone is well. Regular posting will return in the not-too-distant future.

Happy holidays.