What is everyone doing right now

The economy after Corona - we are currently wasting all chances of real change

While on the one hand there is a lot of talk about possible changes in the Corona crisis, on the other hand the economic instruments of the past are being unpacked again. Can't we really do it any better? And where do we want to go with it?

Crises can be opportunities for change. With this hope and the experience of what we can do if the political will is there, we have at least been able to comfort ourselves a little in the last few hard weeks: If we have to go through the Corona crisis, maybe we as a society will learn something from this and thus find the courage to act in new ways in economic and ecological areas and to initiate real changes. After all, it is precisely now that the problems are on the table - and more drastically than seldom before. Lessons from this are pretty obvious. And it is urgently needed.

But despite all the optimism, the great change process is not being initiated now. For example, the answer to the economic problems in the automotive industry should once again be the scrapping or purchase bonus, which was of no help in the last economic crisis in 2009. Because it is financing from taxpayers' money from all of us, for a few who can and want to afford a new car. It only postpones the problem by bringing forward car purchases that will then be absent again next year - and there is actually no longer any need to talk about the ecological aspect. How often do we (have to) save this industry before we break new ground?

State aid, without real ecological demands

Lufthansa is also to receive a whopping nine billion euros from the state, bundled through various aids and equity measures, in order to get back on its feet. But what are the conditions? At least no ecological goals, if you disregard the assertions that the fleet should become a little more environmentally friendly. In France, for example, state aid for Air France is tied to the fact that domestic flights are canceled. French Finance Minister Le Maire said that Air France had to become the airline "that respects the environment the most."

These are announcements that one would wish for in Germany, while in this country we rush past the possible with our eyesight. We need these political demands now, for our environment and to promote new mobility concepts. In addition, the argument for state aid is always to keep jobs, which is actually very good for aid from the state and taxpayers - and yet the money was not linked to the preservation of jobs, although it was possible would. Because that is supposed to be regulated by the market again. The idea that we could also regulate the market is obviously not something that they actively dare to think about.

Instead of shaping the future, old mistakes are repeated

Why are jobs not secured in the long term through innovation funding? Why, if at all, are we sticking to a drive turnaround instead of initiating a mobility turnaround? Why isn't there thinking about canceling domestic flights, where it would be possible? Why are bicycles not subsidized, why not expanding the rail network, why are we not planning free local public transport? Why aren't cities and mobility being rethought, for example in Brussels or London, where large car-free zones have been implemented or planned? Why are there projects in major German cities that are not comparable to the superblocks in Barcelona? Where do we want to go with such a strategy?

If you then consider that the Datteln 4 coal-fired power plant went into operation at the end of May, you can definitely ask yourself whether the decision-makers might want to take the board off their heads. A hard coal power plant in 2020, where even the coal commission had advised the federal government not to let it go online. Is that what politics look like that wants to initiate an energy turnaround? Definitely not. Even former miners have joined the protest against the power plant, through Fridays For Future and Green Peace, among others.

Economic change: creative or painful?

Instead of shaping the future politically, a lot of corona aid and thus also the possibilities for a change in our economic system are given according to the size of the lobby. Not according to the idea of ​​innovation. Not for future viability. Not for positive change.

It's the usual ostrich tactic. But just because you turn a blind eye to the next crisis, it will not fail to appear. And even worse, it is just fueling what needs to be prevented now. Or as the entrepreneur Joana Breidenbrach put it in our first Zebra Talk: “The leading paradigm in our society is still profit. We need a cultural change here. Otherwise the economy will have to transform itself from a pain at some point. ”Do we really want to wait for this pain instead of rethinking beforehand?

When will the big litters come, if not now?

It almost seems like that. Because why do we keep tinkering with the little ones instead of planning the big litters? Why do we keep trying to treat complex problems like complicated problems where all you have to do is clean in a corner and then it'll be fine? That's not how it works with complex problems. For them we have to think holistically, take a close look at all areas, really use the big levers - and understand money as part of the solution. Because money can have a creative effect if it is used correctly. We are also making our contribution here with Tomorrow.

When, if not now? What if not seriously? We make ourselves immobile through the “we-can't-do-this-now” myth. It's a decision not to take action. The only way towards a good morning is on new paths. Everything that is trampled on points in a different direction. How long do we want to afford to take the step back again and again?