Archive for October, 2008

Farmer-poet Berry has this stanza in his poem ‘Some Further Words,’ published in his recent collection ‘Given.’

When I hear the stock market has fallen,
I say, “Long live gravity! Long live
stupidity, error, and greed in the palaces
of fantasy capitalism!” I think
an economy should be based on thrift,
on taking care of things, not on theft,
usury, seduction, waste, and ruin.

(This is a cross post from my posterous site.)

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In the last few years we’ve seen little opposition to the idea that economic growth, however defined, is what national economies should be aiming for above all else.  That’s long concerned us EarthQuakers — we both challenge the ways in which economic costs are usually calculated and wonder how the earth can sustainably support its every inhabitant at American levels of resource consumption.

While many of the more apocalyptic predictions of the Club of Rome’s 1972 original ‘Limits to Growth’ report have not come to pass, the actual arrival of then-feared global warming makes it worth revisiting the arguments made by people who warned of its coming.

It’s time, perhaps, to ask again if there are some limits to growth.  And it certainly seems time to question how we define growth.

The PRI radio show The World ran a usefully succinct item about this very issue today, which you can find at http://www.theworld.org/audio/1015081.mp3

The best stuff starts a few minutes in.

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