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Degrowth Thread

How to save energy through both societal and individual actions.

Re: Degrowth Thread

Unread postby onlooker » Fri 29 Mar 2019, 19:22:02

Nothing we have tried has worked. Wonder if we really tried
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Re: Degrowth Thread

Unread postby Ibon » Fri 29 Mar 2019, 20:01:12

onlooker wrote:Nothing we have tried has worked. Wonder if we really tried
https://caitlinjohnstone.com/2019/03/28 ... ied-works/


We are not hurling ourselves toward extinction. Just toward an inflection point that will hurt.
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Re: Degrowth Thread

Unread postby KaiserJeep » Sat 30 Mar 2019, 02:30:16

There are those among us who would blame economic systems, government theories/practices, politics, or any number of other "things that we do" for the fatal conumdrum we find ourselves in. There really is no point to further debate on such topics, none of which have been, are, or will be helpfull to resolve our fate, human condition, or however you want to express it.

Humans are the biggest success story that Nature ever concocted. We reproduced to the limits, consumed to the limits, took every resource to 100%, and did not stop, are not stopping, and will not stop doing what comes "natural", not ever.

You got some kind of problem with success, do you, Bubba?
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Re: Degrowth Thread

Unread postby Newfie » Wed 24 Apr 2019, 06:34:01

Columbia town rejects gold mine. My DIL is from central Columbia.

Around 98 percent of the residents in Cajamarca said no to the mine due to concerns over the environment and water pollution – and Colombian Mining Minister German Arce doesn’t seem too happy with the results.

South African company AngloGold Ashanti aimed to build the gold mine, called La Colosa, in Central Colombia, and it could have been the biggest gold mine in South America. The national government was in favor of La Colosa, saying mining is vital as they recover from war with Marxist rebels. But residents of Cajamarca, where the mine would be located, overwhelmingly rejected the project in a recent referendum. According to the BBC, 19,000 people live in the town, and only 76 locals voted in favor of the gold mine while 6,100 voted against.


http://www.whitewolfpack.com/2017/04/co ... MlJzU8&m=1

The referendum throws into doubt South African miner AngloGold Ashanti ’s proposal for one of the world’s largest open-pit excavations—more than twice the size of Central Park—along with Colombia’s embrace of the role of multinationals to advance remote regions once torn by decades of violence.

Three other towns rich in minerals now say they will replicate Cajamarca’s anti-mining campaign and referendum. The national government is playing down the impact of Sunday’s vote, but the stage is set for legal battles that will likely play out across Colombia’s multiple, competing courts.


https://www.google.com/amp/s/www.wsj.co ... 1490952620
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Re: Degrowth Thread

Unread postby Newfie » Mon 20 May 2019, 14:27:10

Vtsnowedin came up with the idea of taxing robots some time ago. I’m starting to think that’s a great idea. What really got me considering it was hearing how Japan is trying to deal with a shrinking population. Shrinking population shrinks the taxable working base.

However if we shift the tax from being in the PERSON as the base of production to the DEVICE that is creating the production then we can still have an expanding tax base in the face of a decreasing population.

Strikes me that this would go a long way to stabilizing our population, putting an end to immigration, plus creating a more fair economy.

Thoughts?
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Re: Degrowth Thread

Unread postby Newfie » Sun 02 Jun 2019, 10:46:23

Excellent article in the need for degrowth.

To understand you are in a prison, you must first be able to see the bars. That this prison was created by humans over many generations doesn’t change the conclusion that we are currently tightly bound up within a system that could, if we do not act, lead to the impoverishment, and even death of billions of people.


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Re: Degrowth Thread

Unread postby Ibon » Mon 03 Jun 2019, 08:19:51

When you read these forecasts of dire consequences and climate scientists stating that they are horrified by whats coming this does indeed invoke, as the author of that piece mentioned , a certain apathy among the ignorant and a sort of paralysis among the better informed.

This is exactly the way we are collectively imprisoned and this is by definition what happens to a species at the peak of overshoot, imprisoned and subjected to all the very consequences that are the solution.

In reality, this paralysis is perfectly matched with where we need to be. It's a bit of a existential dilemma but if you deeply understand the process you embrace it.

Every dire consequence is the solution, from flooding coast lines to crop failures and tropical diseases spreading north to resource wars and all the rest.

You can either contemplate this with horror as the author suggested..... or

I personally view this a bit differently, with a sense of relief, finally the kudzu ape juggernaut meets its master.

Every sense of frustration that you have regarding the collective dilemma of climate change and all the other myriad consequences of human overshoot are resolved in the very consequences. Only cowards really should view this with horror. Or individuals plagued with displaced compassion. 7 billion humans in this technosphere the author mentioned are not in my humble opinion deserving of very much compassion. This is certainly the view of an Orangutan looking from the remnant canopy at the vast monoculture of oil palms in Sumatra for example.

These are times where one chooses where to compartmentalize ones compassion. To ones nation, community or tribe or down to ones family. Again, I take another view... For me compassion is focused and compartmentalized on the rest of the community of life, all the flora and fauna that is waiting on the sidelines to recolonize former human habitat as we recede.

Kudzu Apes be damned by their own hubris and collective arrogance. I see no reason for compassion. I see only reasons for consequences to act as agents to bring humans back into the fold of being balanced members of the community of life on the planet. You know, all that which we ultimately wish for.


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Re: Degrowth Thread

Unread postby Newfie » Mon 03 Jun 2019, 11:09:40

Ibon,

Google an app called “We Croak”, I know it works in iPhone, maybe Android as well. You may appreciate it.
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Re: Degrowth Thread

Unread postby Ibon » Mon 03 Jun 2019, 12:52:42

Newfie wrote:Ibon,

Google an app called “We Croak”, I know it works in iPhone, maybe Android as well. You may appreciate it.


I did on my andriod phone. Interesting.......
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Re: Degrowth Thread

Unread postby Newfie » Sun 09 Jun 2019, 10:45:13

Here is a nicely thought out article debunking “green development.”

https://www.aljazeera.com/indepth/opini ... 20654.html
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Re: Degrowth Thread

Unread postby wildbourgman » Sun 09 Jun 2019, 12:44:14

Newfie wrote: by Newfie » Sun 09 Jun 2019, 10:45:13


I'm not a big fan of the article or the faux green development it's railing against.

If you want some de-growth how about reduce government intrusion that promotes inefficiency and market distortions. For instance don't bail out anyone during the next economic collapse. Stop both corporate and social welfare programs. How about realizing that Survival of the fittest applies to all life and systems. True Free Market Capitalism does not have to grow to survive, failure and reset is part of capitalism and nature. The system some people call capitalism today is one that's very blended with government and demands growth for survival, but doesn't allow the reset that comes from feeling economic pain.

Earlier Kaiser said we are a success story, but maybe our success is similar to the Kudsu plant as Ibon states. Is our success killing us ?
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Re: Degrowth Thread

Unread postby Ibon » Sun 09 Jun 2019, 13:37:04

Newfie wrote:Ibon,

Google an app called “We Croak”, I know it works in iPhone, maybe Android as well. You may appreciate it.


I am enjoying the daily reminders coming in on that app
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Re: Degrowth Thread

Unread postby onlooker » Sun 09 Jun 2019, 17:15:59

". Is our success killing us ?" You can judge our Geo-political economic system a success ONLY if you discount the vast majority left behind and the grim prospects for the future for our species. Earlier I posted an article that intimated we may go extinct. Well, even if we don't, it is not comforting to know what a resounding fall we will almost certainly take in our development . Or the great death and suffering that will ensue. I do not envision much modernity left after all is said and done.
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Re: Degrowth Thread

Unread postby Newfie » Tue 11 Jun 2019, 07:56:26

Had an interesting discussion with a Norwegian guy last night. He related that he tried to discuss degrowth with a near relative who is a professional economist (BIL or some such).

This professional economist had never heard of degrowth and was just absolutely sure the only way the economy could function was with eternal growth.
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Re: Degrowth Thread

Unread postby Ibon » Tue 11 Jun 2019, 08:00:10

Newfie wrote:Had an interesting discussion with a Norwegian guy last night. He related that he tried to discuss degrowth with a near relative who is a professional economist (BIL or some such).

This professional economist had never heard of degrowth and was just absolutely sure the only way the economy could function was with eternal growth.



Hamsters running on the wheel with the off switch broken.

It seems to really be true that running out of fuel is the only thing that will shut down this juggernaut.

This only reinforces that solutions will come external of human agency.
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Re: Degrowth Thread

Unread postby Newfie » Tue 11 Jun 2019, 11:32:20

I still think the financial system is most vulnerable, will collapse first. Can’t prove it, just gut.
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Re: Degrowth Thread

Unread postby Newfie » Sat 17 Aug 2019, 13:45:50

Growth is the “beating heart of a free economy,” U.S. House Speaker Paul Ryan told the Economic Club of Washington D.C, earlier this year. In his speech, Ryan repeated the common narrative that without steady economic growth, we’re all doomed.

Degrowthers – members of a flourishing movement of academics and activists pushing to equitably and sustainably downscale the economy – think otherwise.

Growth is not a solution, but a part of the problem, degrowthers argue, and cannot be endless in a world with finite resources. It perpetuates a cycle of consumption and production, putting the planet and our well-being at great risk. But, despite all the costs, economic growth continues to be the raison d’etre in politics and the business sector.

The GDP, or Gross Domestic Product, measures the value added of goods and services produced in a country during a given period. It’s widely considered the king of all popular indicators for tracking economic growth, often used to score political points. U.S. President Donald Trump cheered the 4.1 percent GDP growth in the second quarter of 2018 – the highest rate since 2014 – calling it “amazing” during an impromptu press conference in July.

But what Trump failed to mention is that a bigger economic pie does not necessarily translate into higher living standards for everyone. That’s especially true in a deeply unequal society like the United States, where the benefits of economic growth are increasingly captured by the 1 percent.

In an interview with The Washington Post, David Pilling, the journalist and author of The Growth Delusion: Wealth, Poverty, and the Well-Being of Nations, says GDP measures economic “quantity not quality” and should not be conflated with well-being, especially in richer countries. In some instances, GDP growth could even mean the opposite.

GDP has long been widely criticized for counting defense spending, financial speculation, and even theft as positive contributions to growth, while excluding non-monetized trade and ignoring environmental and social costs. “If I steal your car and sell it, that counts toward growth,” Pilling explains, “but if I look after an aged relative or bring up three well-adjusted children, that does not.”

Pilling recommends complementing GDP with more inclusive data and measurements. But the leaders of the degrowth movement don’t just challenge growth indicators. They’re taking on the dogma of economic growth.

Degrowth “does not call for doing less of the same,” as the editors of the first comprehensive book on the movement make clear. “The objective is not to make an elephant leaner, but to turn an elephant into a snail.” They call for a radically different political-economic system needed to preserve the environment and improve well-being.
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The term décroissance – French for degrowth – was first used decades ago by European intellectuals. But the term became the umbrella slogan for a movement in 2008, when an academic collective organized the first international degrowth conference in Paris.

Conference-goers made the term concrete, defining degrowth as a “voluntary transition towards a just, participatory, and ecologically sustainable society,” making clear that a downsizing process was necessary for wealthy countries. They envisioned a society organized around sharing, simplicity, and solidarity, rather than the profit, efficiency, and competition inherent to capitalism.

In the decade since the Paris conference, six other international gatherings have further cemented their ideas, including at this year’s meeting in Sweden. These conferences have helped shape an international degrowth community of academics, activists and practitioners.

The movement is also solidifying the global nature of its message. The first North-South degrowth conference is being held this week in Mexico City. The gathering is crucial: a frequent criticism of the degrowth movement is that the economies of Global South countries have the same right to grow to meet basic needs that Northern countries have. Sociologist Miriam Lang responded to this criticism at the Malmö conference. The economic “growth” that critics point to as being necessary, Lang said, generally rely on natural resource extraction and other industries that exploit local populations, reinforcing a destructive ideal of progress.

The degrowth movement is more of a coalition of social and environmental ideas rather than one cohesive force with a unified political agenda. One shared understanding, however, is the need for systemic change. The next step for degrowthers? Developing a plan for a radical transformation.

A survey of published scholarship on degrowth found that policy proposals align with three broad goals:

Reduce the environmental impact of human activities
Redistribute income and wealth both within and between countries;
Promote the transition from a materialistic to a convivial and participatory society.
The proposals include common-sense ecological plans, like the reduction of energy and material consumption, carbon caps, bans on harmful activities, and incentives for local production and consumption. Degrowthers are also looking to transform traditional ideas of the economy with the promotion of community currencies and alternative credit institutions, reduced working hours, basic and maximum incomes, and voluntary simplicity and downshifting.

These proposals are gaining traction in the political sphere. In the UK, economist Tim Jackson has promoted an all-party working group in the UK Parliament devoted to discussion and research on limiting growth. Jackson will also be a keynote speaker later this month at the European Parliament’s Post-Growth 2018 conference. The gathering offers activists and scientists a unique opportunity to directly engage with EU officials on degrowth, and to present alternative to the dominant economic and financial orthodoxy.

The conference couldn’t be more necessary, as European politicians are already coming up against the limits of growth. French environmental minister Nicolas Hulot resigned last week, frustrated at the lack of support he received to tackle urgent environmental issues while Macron and his government “stubbornly try to revive an economic model that is the cause of all this mess.” Hulot is ringing an alarm that’s all too familiar to degrowthers: we can’t deal with our environmental crises without radically rethinking the economy.


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Re: Degrowth Thread

Unread postby Tanada » Sat 17 Aug 2019, 17:00:05

When you build your economy on interest paid loans your only option is to grow faster than the interest eats up your principal. We got ourselves into the horrible position when the Federal Reserve was created and started loaning money to the US Treasury rather than all bills being paid by taxes or short term bonds sold to Joe6P at a fixed 2% interest rate.

On the other hand when you build your economy on physical things rather than theoretical paper interest the growth rate is set by the physical limits of those things. If the population grows without improved economic use of the land then the average wealth goes down in an obvious fashion. If on the other hand you hide those losses by inflating your currency with interest paying loans people still have less, but the numbers make it look like they actually have more. The numbers on paper are a pure abstraction, yet we as a culture have allowed ourselves to be fooled into believing they are real.
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Re: Degrowth Thread

Unread postby radon1 » Sat 17 Aug 2019, 17:47:15

Newfie wrote:
This professional economist had never heard of degrowth and was just absolutely sure the only way the economy could function was with eternal growth.


Growth is abnormal and is a feature of the last couple hundred years, as well as some other earlier episodes here and there. For the most part of the history, growth was non-existent. It's interesting that economists are typically unaware of it.
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Re: Degrowth Thread

Unread postby onlooker » Sat 17 Aug 2019, 17:52:17

The numbers on paper are a pure abstraction, yet we as a culture have allowed ourselves to be fooled into believing they are real.
Yes, that is why on the economic threads we have been arguing that the supposed economic growth still occurring is purely illusory given the plethora of lending that has been going on in recent years
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