Lincoln Book Festival

Lincoln Book Festival
2017 Festival Programme

Friday, 13 February 2015

Broke

Broke is a play by the very talented Paper Birds. It was very well received at the Edinburgh Fringe, I was lucky enough to see it at Lincoln Drill Hall.

It explores debt, how it builds and then its legacy. The writers saw a point of origin in the 1980's with Mrs Thatcher's attack on working communities and her encouragement to everyone to become middle class. It is middle class aspiration where the driver for ever increasing borrowing can be found.

They explore individual and government debt side by side.

It is frightening just how easy it is for someone, making their way through life, to gather around them the millstone of debt, and even more chilling to see just how hard it is to get out.

Perhaps more scary is their analysis of government and how a consumer economy can only function with ever increasing debt. It is the emperor's new clothes, it only works until some is brave enough to blow the whistle.

For me, the play brought back ideas contained in my blogs from 2009 when I was writing Broken Bonds, a novel about the banking crisis and its impact. My more recent blogs are about Magna Carta and the abuse of power. I wonder, was Mrs Thatcher's push for deregulation, which I still see as the heart of the problem, an almighty abuse of power?

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