Let's be realistic: this crunch won't last for ever. And when it ends, consumers will need new products. We're going to need innovation in financial services (after all, we can't reuse the failed products of last year and preceding decades). New delivery services (keeping food miles down, recognising more purchasing on the internet, even home delivery services from a trip down the high street so you can go on spending!). New transportation options (carbon footprint again). New eating and socialising options (when facebook and twitter take their rightful place not as substitutes for an evening out with mates, but as the enabler). New everything. We could leave it to a few very talented inventors to come up with new ideas - but the things that catch on have a habit of being surprising. Perhaps we should dedicate the hundreds of thousands of people who are at risk of losing their jobs, dedicate them to creating innovation. The alternative is that society has to pay for them anyway (unemployment, mental health medication, lack of confidence to contribute for decades to come) but gets nothing back. This way (ie with government paying the same amount to their employers, as long as these workers are dedicated to discovering innovation rather than business as usual) gives people their self-esteem and puts Britain in a very very strong position coming out of the recession.