of digits: capitalism, financialisation, public accountability. There is another which sounds rather more mundane. We have them because leaders don't know how else to lead.
If the liberal ideals of democracy don't really function in ‘actually existing democracies’, 1 if the grand theories of economics and business are too abstract, there are always numbers and targets instead. These become workable proxies for ideas and policies. They are the way leaders evaluate each other. They are how twenty-first-century econocracy 2 functions
made in Joe Earle et al. (2016) The Econocracy: The Perils of Leaving Economics to the Experts , Manchester: Manchester University Press.
16 OFT was the Office of Fair Trading, running from 1973 to 2014. Now part of the Financial Conduct Authority.