How creative can one become in formulating economic policy? I would say, Very!
There are many layers of an economy that the policymaker can focus on. And one can simply choose one particular layer and be deliberately myopic.
Policy can be focused purely on consumption or production, the focus on one will have an impact on the other. One can become increasing adept at consuming or producing or making things. I would say that each one of us spend our entire lives perfecting the art of consumption or production. While we may think that we do all of that - work, eat, sleep - the share each component in our lives defines us, or rather our daily routine. Salary workers spend all their time working, with little time to eat or sleep. Those with cash spend all their time figuring out how to eat, and little time to sleep or do anything productive.
At a higher level, policy can be formulated to define the type of economic system that we prefer to live in or enclose ourselves in. Thanks to Adam Smith who popularise the exchange economy, there is no need for conscious charity and generosity - the world can pretend to do good when it is greedy and selfish - and in the end unfettered capitalism produces the ignoble result of global destruction.
In less enlightened societies, the focus on religious or racial characteristics - attributes which individuals can do very little about, being caught in the torrents of history - as defining policy pivots suffers the problem of being caught with results which are produced by the initial assumption made.
Strategy is therefore nothing but the self-restraint one puts on creativity.
It is the deliberate limiting of the global stage that we, like "creating" a bonsai plant, twist and turn each and every little branch and twig to produce a deformed product which we all then try to admire its twistedness.
In olden times, or rather since times immemorial, the object of dominant people is to invade and steal the fruit of other people labours - for our own benefit and at their expense. This is what we all dream of - the abhorrence of labour - and the only way that this can be done is to create a situation where the unfortunate will have to labour to the delights of others. This is in fact the real heaven that we are all secretly seeking in this dusty earth of ours.
But, alas!, how dismal. Simply for the pleasure of a handful of individuals, whole societies and communities are mobilised to dig up the earth to extract what we need for the moment and to throw away into the naked environment distilled poisons which we do not know how to use for now, and in so doing producing an environment that we all fear to be in.
The mass production of cheap and useless consumer products by the world's most populous nation demonstrated how those who slave do not have the pleasure of enjoying the fruit of their own labour. This is clearly an misguided policy.
The strategy to alter the demographics of a society by importing "young, educated and productive" new citizens in order to cure the ills of an aging society is one that is fraud with danger. The strategy is focused purely on the management of an informal whole will ignoring the condition of the individual constituents. The aging and the infirmed will remain so by the sheer force of nature, while the new, young and energetic will take over and create a sense of vibrant which the underlying layer of the aging and infirmed is unable to defend or retaliate. There is no salvation of the individual.
The degree of self-deception that policymakers can go is amazing. That household debt is now as much as half the national income and deemed to be a non-worrisome "even if it does look like a very big number" is nothing but an attempt for officials to pull wool over the eyes of the public. This is the result of banking ignorance, as they veer deep into consumer lending, unable to revive the budding corporate sector.