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Experts Blame Consumerism for Unrests in Britain.

Summary: TEHRAN (FNA)- Experts and analysts believe that the recent unrests in London and other big cities were the product of an "out-of-control consumerist ethos" which will have profound impacts on the UK economy.

According to a new report by the global head of research at Tullett Prebon, Tim Morgan, "We conclude that the rioting reflects a deeply flawed economic and social ethosC* recklessly borrowed consumption, the breakdown both of top-end accountability and of trust in institutions, and severe failings by governments over more than two decades."

The note pinpoints the philosophy behind the protests as consumerism.

A typical internet user sees a hundred adverts an hour, the report said, and the underlying message many receive is, "Here's the ideal. You can't have it." Accompanying this is an inflation of government and private debt, a key theme of Morgan's other work.

"The economy has been subjected to repeated 'boom and bust' cycles, above all in property. The overall pattern has been that an over-consuming west has borrowed and spent the surpluses of the increasingly productive and under-consuming East.

"The dominant ethos of 'I buy, therefore I am' needs to be challenged by a shift of emphasis from material to non-material values. David Cameron's 'big society' project may contribute to the inculcation of more socially-oriented values, but much more will need to be done to challenge the out-of-control consumerist ethos.

"The government, too, needs to consume less, and invest more. Government spending has increased by more than 50% in real terms over the last decade, but public investment has languished. Saving needs to be encouraged, and private investment needs to be channeled into asset creation, not asset inflation."

Morgan added, "A young person who tries to become the next Alan Sugar or James Dyson is as likely to fall short as if he or she sets out to become the next global football star.

"ButC* failure to become the next Alan Sugar can still leave a person well equipped for a career in management, finance or accountancy. Failure to emulate James Dyson will leave the aspirant with useful engineering or technological skills."

Unrest has rocked Britain on a scale unprecedented in 30 years following the police's killing of black male Mark Duggan in a shooting spree in the London suburb of Tottenham on August 4.

Tension erupted on August 6, when a few hundred people gathered outside a police station in Tottenham to protest the killing.

The protests then spread to major cities like Birmingham, Liverpool, and Bristol.

Despite London's claims about supporting freedom of expression and flow of information, Britain's Prime Minister threatened to block access to social networking websites following the outbreak of social unrests in the country, London in particular.

The British police have arrested a number of internet users as part of a broader clampdown on social networking sites under security excuses.

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Publication:FARS News Agency
Geographic Code:4EUUK
Date:Aug 23, 2011
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