2008/07/22 09:57

Qui est responsable de la crise du crédit?

Les prêteurs sans scrupules qui ne se sont pas occupé de savoir si leurs clients étaient vraiment en mesure de rembourser ou les consommateurs irresponsable qui ont fait fi de leur responsabilité personnelle en vivant au dessus de leurs moyens?

Selon David Brooks, il faut surtout examiner l’évolution de la culture ambiante qui dicte ce qui est “normal” et “acceptable” en société… un phénomène qui influence (souvent inconsciement) le processus décisionnel des acteurs respectifs autant qu’il est défini et amplifié par leur comportement.

what happened to McLeod, and the nation’s financial system, is part of a larger social story. America once had a culture of thrift. But over the past decades, that unspoken code has been silently eroded.

Some of the toxins were economic. Rising house prices gave people the impression that they could take on more risk. Some were cultural. We entered a period of mass luxury, in which people down the income scale expect to own designer goods. Some were moral. Schools and other institutions used to talk the language of sin and temptation to alert people to the seductions that could ruin their lives. They no longer do.

Norms changed and people began making jokes to make illicit things seem normal. Instead of condemning hyper-consumerism, they made quips about “retail therapy,” or repeated the line that Morgenson noted in her article: When the going gets tough, the tough go shopping.

McLeod and the lenders were not only shaped by deteriorating norms, they helped degrade them. Despite all the subterranean social influences, there still is that final stage of decision-making when individual choice matters. Each time an avid lender struck a deal with an avid borrower, it reinforced a new definition of acceptable behavior for neighbors, family and friends. In a community, behavior sets off ripples. Every decision is a public contribution or a destructive act.

Il est plus utile, selon moi, d’examiner le phénomène de façon compréhensive que de blamer la cupidité, l’irrresponsabilité ou la naïveté d’un groupe ou l’autre… Cette dernière approche sert davantage à se conforter et se déculpabiliser qu’à offrir des pistes de solution.


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