Deep Economy: The Wealth of Communities and the Durable Future

Deep Economy: The Wealth of Communities and the Durable Future[Reading] ➸ Deep Economy: The Wealth of Communities and the Durable Future By Bill McKibben – Jobs-in-kingston.co.uk The bestselling author of The End of Nature issues an impassioned call to arms for an economy that creates community and ennobles our livesIn this powerful and provocative manifesto, Bill McKibben off The bestselling author of The End of The Wealth MOBI ñ Nature issues an impassioned call to arms for an economy that creates community and ennobles our livesIn this powerful and provocative manifesto, Bill McKibben offers the biggest challenge in a generation to the prevailing view of our economy For the first time in human history, he observes, is Deep Economy: Epub / no longer synonymous with better indeed, for many of us, they have become almost opposites McKibben puts forward a new way to think about the things we buy, the food we eat, the energy we use, and the money that pays for it all Our purchases, he says, need not be at odds with the things Economy: The Wealth PDF/EPUB é we truly valueMcKibben s animating idea is that we need to move beyond growth as the paramount economic ideal and pursue prosperity in a local direction, with cities, suburbs, and regions producing of their own food, generating of their own energy, and even creating of their own culture and entertainment He shows this concept blossoming around the world with striking results, from the burgeoning economies of India and China to the mature societies of Europe and New England For those who worry about environmental threats, he offers a route out of the worst of those problems for those who wonder if there isn t something to life than buying, he provides the insight to think about one s life as an individual and as a member of a larger communityMcKibben offers a realistic, if challenging, scenario for a hopeful future As he so eloquently shows, the we nurture the essential humanity of our economy, the we will recapture our own. I had very high expectations for this book, perhaps that s why I ended up disliking it so much I almost want to read it again just so I can tally up all of its faults First off, the author should have had an economist review it For being a book about the economy, I found its treatment of economics very poor Anyone with a different viewpoint on economics could poke car sized holes through most of his arguments The vast majority of his evidence for various points he tries to make is anecdotal I had very high expectations for this book, perhaps that s why I ended up disliking it so much I almost want to read it again just so I can tally up all of its faults First off, the author should have had an economist review it For being a book about the economy, I found its treatment of economics very poor Anyone with a different viewpoint on economics could poke car sized holes through most of his arguments The vast majority of his evidence for various points he tries to make is anecdotal, and towards the end he says something like If all of this sounds anecdotal to you, that s because it is, and then going on to say that that s the best evidence he s got Maybe that s true from the very limited point of view he s taking, but not if you take a wider look at his topics Not that his conclusions are completely wrong, but the argument he makes for them is simplistic at best I think the author was trying to stay away from sounding leftist or even liberal, and trying to appease the right, and in doing so watered down his material greatly The book isabout the environment and culture than it really is about economics, but at least he had the ability to see that economics is underlying the root of our problems with those issues One of the parts that actually made me laugh out loud is towards the beginning when he writes, Obviously, markets work Yes, that is so obvious Especially obvious to all the poor people around the world that he talks about so much He tries to critique capitalism and at the same time praise it for how great it is He laments that it s too global, not local enough, without realizing that it s really the inherent nature of capitalism to become big and do what it s currently doing to the world But if only we could rein it in just a little, everything would be fine Right He constantly looks back to just a little bit in the past when we didn t live in such a globalized society with many of our recent technological advances, but really fails to see that we d end up right back where we are today if we went his route of only reforming and changing things a little bit The long and short of it is, if you already know that the environment is in peril, that the U.S is too individualistic or at least likes to pretend so , and that globalization has done great harm to local communities, you can avoid wasting your time with this book Everyone in the world should read this book and everyone who lives in a consumer obsessed society like the United States should be forced too I m only half way through this book and already know that this is possibly one of the most important books I have read in my life Not only does it clearly and logically present everything that is wrong with our obsessiveness with producingand doing it faster, which most every socially conscious person is already aware of, it also lays out very clea Everyone in the world should read this book and everyone who lives in a consumer obsessed society like the United States should be forced too I m only half way through this book and already know that this is possibly one of the most important books I have read in my life Not only does it clearly and logically present everything that is wrong with our obsessiveness with producingand doing it faster, which most every socially conscious person is already aware of, it also lays out very clear logical alternatives that can change our society from one obsessed with industrial growth to one focused on improving the way humanity utilizes our natural resources in a way that is muchin harmony with nature rather then the current method of the raping and pillaging of the earth that will, if no change is made, inevitably lead to if not the demise of humanity, then war and famine that this world has not yet experienced In short he shows the reader everything that is distressingly wrong with our globalized society then gives the reader realistic hope for the future READ THIS BOOK The book was published in 2007, so it is interesting to see just how McKibben may have been on the right track with his opinions One of his main points is to show how shifting to local economies will mean less stuff butdurability Part I After GrowthQuote by John Maynard Keynes say, two thousand years before Christ down to the beginning of the eighteenth century, there was really no great change in the standard of living of the average man in the civilized centers of the earth Ups and The book was published in 2007, so it is interesting to see just how McKibben may have been on the right track with his opinions One of his main points is to show how shifting to local economies will mean less stuff butdurability Part I After GrowthQuote by John Maynard Keynes say, two thousand years before Christ down to the beginning of the eighteenth century, there was really no great change in the standard of living of the average man in the civilized centers of the earth Ups and downs, certainly visitations of plague, famine and war, golden intervals, but no progressive violent change But in 1712, something new finally happened British inventor Thomas Newcomen developed the first practical steam engine It could replace 500 horses walking in a circle The industrial revolution was about to begin In 1776, Adam Smith noted in The Wealth of Nations that continued increase of national wealth increases wages So growth became everything It was the operative word and still is When Reagan became president, growth was everything for both liberals and conservatives Limits were out By the presidency of George W Bush, tax cuts were used to stimulate growth Despite the disastrous consequences, that theory still holds sway in conservative circles And I should add to the extreme But McKibben points out that growth is no longer making us happy This may be his main theme Here s another fact Though our economy has been growing, most of us have relatively little to show for it The income disparity between the top and the bottom is enormous And that disparity is worse now than when McKibben wrote this book The liberal argument is to spread the growth aroundBut McKibben believes that will not solve the problem Growth simply isn t enriching most of us He next discusses the effects of growth on climate change And they are enormous We need to connect our economic policies with the environment and our own life experiences Joy needs to be considered Part II The Year of Eating Locally Four companies slaughter 81% of American beef Cargill controls 45% of the globe s grain trade Archer Daniels Midland controls another 30% of the grain trade In 15 years, Idaho potato farmers have been cut in half to less than 800 About 89% of American chickens are under contract to big companies, usually in broiler houses up to 500 feel long holding 30,000 orchickens The list could go on with virtually all commodities The farmers in this process live often miserable lives Can you imagine raising chickens for Perdue They become Land owning serfs in an agricultural feudal system They make a pittance Cheap rock lobster is often harvested by divers who show signs of neurological damage because they use ancient scuba equipment Again, that s just one example There are manyOne farm in Utah has 1.5 million hogs andsewage problems than Los Angeles This is not true farming Abusing the environment can be efficient in a way Just forget about the aftereffects Our food system has become increasingly vulnerable to sabotage Why hasn t it been done yet Maybe because it s not as bloody and terrorizing as a massacre Half the chicken in British supermarkets is contaminated with campylobacter Live birds are stacked in enormous towers while awaiting slaughter They shit on each other People want cheap food Ground water is running out Places that are currently running dry California, India, Mexico, China, Saudi Arabia We are paying the price for the deep wells The fact is, however, that small farms producefood You can intercrop different kinds of plants Remember that and support them The Cuban boycott helped Cuban farms to get small It probably saved them Part 3 All for One, or One for AllHouses are now being developed to help people stay to themselves As Margaret Thatcher said, There are no such thing as society There are just individuals and their families The public realm is coming under increasing attack Selfishness rules, even in Christianity We now have hyper individualism The former Soviet Union is the most toxic place on earth When Wal Mart expands, all sorts of small businesses disappear It eliminates 1 1 2 jobs for every 1 job it creates More Wal Marts meanspoverty People are happier with marriage, families, friends, community The key to change is local Part 4 The Wealth of Communities Interesting, in this chapter, McKibben talks about a small radio station When Congress deregulated radio and ended the fairness doctrine, the change was dramatic Hate radio began And Clear Channel controlled over 1200 stations How is this deregulation Locals could not even get local news on the air In Powell, Wyoming, a red state town, the citizens kept a Wal Mart out and built a clothing store Americans are the energy use champions of all time we require a lot of fossil fuels Japan leads the world in building a decentralized solar panel energy economy Hyper individualism has been spread by our tv shows People around the world want to live like that Vermont has a family forest program for local lumber that preserves forests Part 5 The Durable Future About 30 million Chinese people a year pour out of the countryside into the city, the greatest migration in history They want to be like America It s just not possible for the earth to allow that It cannot even handle one America The deserts of the world are growing relentlessly Mexico lost 1.3 million small farmers thanks to NAFTA An impoverished coffee grower in Uganda gets 200 shillings for a kilo of coffee Starbucks gets the equivalent of 5,000 shillings for one cup of coffee All of the value items we buy at the grocery store It s the same way A surprising fact McKibben saw many protestors in China Farmers and workers were upset about their treatment McKibben s hope of developingcommunity spirit here in the US does not fill me with the optimism he wants Let me finish with this disturbing bit of information In 2003, the US led transition government of Iraq in one of the first laws adopted protected the patenting of plants and seeds, even though 97% of Iraqi farmers used seeds from local markets or grown from their own crops This was the Bush administration cooperating with the likes of Monsanto, Syngenta, Bayer, and Dow Chemical Daniel Amstutz, who oversaw agricultural reconstruction in Iraq, was a former Cargill executive That says it all, doesn t it When I saw the title Deep Economy I had a sort of fascination as if I were watching a train wreck.Surely it would be pushing for radical socialism for the sake of radical environmentalism Instead Bill McKibben wrote a book I m still grappling with.His first line of attack is economic growth itself.First he argues economic growth is unsustainable This is his strongest argument in the short term but his weakest argument over the long haul.There are alternatives to fossil fuel when it becomes t When I saw the title Deep Economy I had a sort of fascination as if I were watching a train wreck.Surely it would be pushing for radical socialism for the sake of radical environmentalism Instead Bill McKibben wrote a book I m still grappling with.His first line of attack is economic growth itself.First he argues economic growth is unsustainable This is his strongest argument in the short term but his weakest argument over the long haul.There are alternatives to fossil fuel when it becomes too expensive to run our economies We won t have an end to growth but simply growth with different economies In the transition the short term it will appear economic growth has stalled.However there s apressing problem if we continue to grow off fossil fuel we risk massive damage to the oceans, our climate and the air.McKibben s strongest argument is one I actually first ran into in Richard Layard s Happiness Economic growth is no longer making us happy and it s actually beginning to harm things that do make us happy family, friendship, community, leisure time.It s hard to emphasize this enough but we are as irrational as a gold fish If you place fish food in a goldfish s tank they ll eat until they die We do the same with income We tend to treat income as a good long past when we started giving upimportant things for it With our obesity epidemic we may belike the goldfish than we think.On a grand scale a focus on economic growth also leads to isolation Income divides between the wealthy and everyone else tend to grow faster than the economy Mass migrations tend to leave people not trusting the newcomers or even their own neighbors People tend to Bowl Alone.McKibben calls this blindness to people autistic economics McKibben I should note does think economic growth is useful to a point, especially for developing nations.McKibben then attempts to describe what a replacement to our dysfunctional economy might be He does not offer up tired communist or socialist centralism He moves on to local economies, farmer s markets, an attack on industrial farming, and a focus on local culture.McKibben suggests the move to massive industrial farms using expensive chemicals, shipping their products halfway around the world, might be better replaced by a focus on local farms feeding local people.McKibben also suggests local media radio stations as an alternative to the media conglomerates that feed the same bland news and entertainment to Eureka, California as to Eureka, Kansas.McKibben does a good job attacking our goldfish like hunger for faster and faster growth long after it s started to hurt us McKibben has to be tentative and experimental in suggesting an alternative because alternatives to the hedonistic merry go round are just being tried This was my first book written by Bill McKibben, a journalist and environmentalist I think I have been wanting to lighten my carbon footprint but needed a little guidance on how to go about doing it Living in Europe has opened me to beaccepting of local suppliers and retailers the fact that shopping at our base commissary is a chore could be another reason I am happy to buy and live the European way So it should come as no surprise that the chapters dealing with American style of agric This was my first book written by Bill McKibben, a journalist and environmentalist I think I have been wanting to lighten my carbon footprint but needed a little guidance on how to go about doing it Living in Europe has opened me to beaccepting of local suppliers and retailers the fact that shopping at our base commissary is a chore could be another reason I am happy to buy and live the European way So it should come as no surprise that the chapters dealing with American style of agriculture and the end of factory farming industrial farms were the most impactful to me I was also very interested in how politics were given the local is better treatment Granted, the author lives in Vermont, aliberal area of the U.S., so his ideas work because the state population is muchlikely to want to live locally The only area of the book I had to disagree with is the part where he talks about local currency it seemed to beof a throwback to the early days of the republic and was difficult for those living in border areas to live and work with differing currencies of the individual states I think most of the ideas found in this book resonate with me because I read about them post 2008 global recession, so the ideas were not as radical some were indeed necessary and some were probably implemented in 2009 and thereafter as they were in 2007 Overall, I found this book to be useful in helping me start my journey to living less globally andlocally If you ve never been exposed to environmentalism or green philosophy this work can serve as a general introduction But, frankly, who hasn t been exposed to this stuff A thin work of popular journalism with no substantive economic analysis at all. I picked up Deep Economy as a sort of economic primer, hoping to become a bitfluent in the language of acquisitions and nets and grosses I also hoped that Bill McKibben would help me find a better response to those who still haven t converted to the cult of buying local And in the first chapter, Bill McKibben clarifies GDP and GNP just enough to then claim that economics is much, muchthan acronyms that try to measure the quest for monetary growth Part personal challenge, part econ I picked up Deep Economy as a sort of economic primer, hoping to become a bitfluent in the language of acquisitions and nets and grosses I also hoped that Bill McKibben would help me find a better response to those who still haven t converted to the cult of buying local And in the first chapter, Bill McKibben clarifies GDP and GNP just enough to then claim that economics is much, muchthan acronyms that try to measure the quest for monetary growth Part personal challenge, part economic treatise, Deep Economy articulates an economy that keeps people in mind, and that s willing to say enough when what we have is, in fact, enough.McKibben practices deep economics in his community near Burlington, Vermont From his year long pledge to eat locally and sustainably to the numerous examples of others whose livelihoods may never be accounted for in national economic statistics, McKibben stands by his claim thatand better can no longer be the sole indicators of a thriving economy Though he doesn t promote a new and specific means of measuring economic success, McKibben points out various measurements in other countries, including the index of well being in Great Britain and the index of community vitality in Canada He also includes as examples of successful local economies, Ithaca, NY where locals trade a community currency and Kerala, one of the poorest states in India, which has one of the highest literacy rates in the world.Perhaps the greatest accomplishment of Deep Economy is to nudge us non economists into thinking economically And by that, I simply mean questioning how we can arrange our bartering and trading, buying and selling to affirm ourselves and our communities That kind of economics doesn t even need an acronym I really enjoyed the chapter on local food and McKibben s analysis of the heavy oil inputs into our subsidized corn fed food chain Otherwise, this is a cliche and shrill regurgitation of the already nauseating _Bowling Alone_, Michael Pollan s excellent _Omnivore s Dilemma_, and all anti Wal Mart sentiment that comes from overeducated champagne liberals in small towns like Middlebury, VT, Boulder, CO and Ann Arbor, MI I really enjoyed the chapter on local food and McKibben s analysis of the heavy oil inputs into our subsidized corn fed food chain Otherwise, this is a cliche and shrill regurgitation of the already nauseating _Bowling Alone_, Michael Pollan s excellent _Omnivore s Dilemma_, and all anti Wal Mart sentiment that comes from overeducated champagne liberals in small towns like Middlebury, VT, Boulder, CO and Ann Arbor, MI This was a really great book but I m giving it four stars just because McKibben never mentioned socialism I totally agree that our economy cannot continue to grow on a finite planet, but capitalism requires growth Thus, the only logical way out is ecosocialism I always say there s two things every environmentalist should be socialist and vegan Still a great read, I love mckibben This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers To view it, click here I m really enjoying this one It s a lot the same sort of thing that John Michael Greer covered in The Long Descent, except that McKibben has a much lighter, jocular,informal style with illustrative anecdotes that make the reader feelconnected to the subject, such as when he interviews employees at a shower curtain factory in China about their quality of life On the downside comparing him to Greer , I find his name dropping annoying When Greer cites another work, he tends to giv I m really enjoying this one It s a lot the same sort of thing that John Michael Greer covered in The Long Descent, except that McKibben has a much lighter, jocular,informal style with illustrative anecdotes that make the reader feelconnected to the subject, such as when he interviews employees at a shower curtain factory in China about their quality of life On the downside comparing him to Greer , I find his name dropping annoying When Greer cites another work, he tends to give some background on what the work is and why it matters McKibben, on the other hand, may mention three or four different authors works in a single paragraph, with nocontext than a number to look up in the bibliography I compare these two because I see them hitting a lot of the same topics and citing some of the same works, notably E.F Schumacher s Small is Beautiful The theme so far We used to think thatis better, and back when our ancestors were starving and freezing in dirt floored cabins, it was true But now that even poor people in America have a staggering amount of affluence compared to those struggling forebears, consuming the world s resources at a staggering and unsustainable rate, it s not making us any happier As we ve becomevoracious consumers, we ve also experienced increases in divorce, alcoholism, suicide, and depression McKibben suggests that we need to break out of our present pattern of thinking to learn a new strategy for pursuing happiness before we destroy ourselves and the planet s ability to support life Edit I added the following after finishing the book It s amazing how much this guy has traveled I think his anecdotes from around the world added tremendously to the storytelling, to relating his principles by way of real life examples

Deep Economy: The Wealth of Communities and the Durable
    Deep Economy: The Wealth of Communities and the Durable the world with striking results, from the burgeoning economies of India and China to the mature societies of Europe and New England For those who worry about environmental threats, he offers a route out of the worst of those problems for those who wonder if there isn t something to life than buying, he provides the insight to think about one s life as an individual and as a member of a larger communityMcKibben offers a realistic, if challenging, scenario for a hopeful future As he so eloquently shows, the we nurture the essential humanity of our economy, the we will recapture our own. I had very high expectations for this book, perhaps that s why I ended up disliking it so much I almost want to read it again just so I can tally up all of its faults First off, the author should have had an economist review it For being a book about the economy, I found its treatment of economics very poor Anyone with a different viewpoint on economics could poke car sized holes through most of his arguments The vast majority of his evidence for various points he tries to make is anecdotal I had very high expectations for this book, perhaps that s why I ended up disliking it so much I almost want to read it again just so I can tally up all of its faults First off, the author should have had an economist review it For being a book about the economy, I found its treatment of economics very poor Anyone with a different viewpoint on economics could poke car sized holes through most of his arguments The vast majority of his evidence for various points he tries to make is anecdotal, and towards the end he says something like If all of this sounds anecdotal to you, that s because it is, and then going on to say that that s the best evidence he s got Maybe that s true from the very limited point of view he s taking, but not if you take a wider look at his topics Not that his conclusions are completely wrong, but the argument he makes for them is simplistic at best I think the author was trying to stay away from sounding leftist or even liberal, and trying to appease the right, and in doing so watered down his material greatly The book isabout the environment and culture than it really is about economics, but at least he had the ability to see that economics is underlying the root of our problems with those issues One of the parts that actually made me laugh out loud is towards the beginning when he writes, Obviously, markets work Yes, that is so obvious Especially obvious to all the poor people around the world that he talks about so much He tries to critique capitalism and at the same time praise it for how great it is He laments that it s too global, not local enough, without realizing that it s really the inherent nature of capitalism to become big and do what it s currently doing to the world But if only we could rein it in just a little, everything would be fine Right He constantly looks back to just a little bit in the past when we didn t live in such a globalized society with many of our recent technological advances, but really fails to see that we d end up right back where we are today if we went his route of only reforming and changing things a little bit The long and short of it is, if you already know that the environment is in peril, that the U.S is too individualistic or at least likes to pretend so , and that globalization has done great harm to local communities, you can avoid wasting your time with this book Everyone in the world should read this book and everyone who lives in a consumer obsessed society like the United States should be forced too I m only half way through this book and already know that this is possibly one of the most important books I have read in my life Not only does it clearly and logically present everything that is wrong with our obsessiveness with producingand doing it faster, which most every socially conscious person is already aware of, it also lays out very clea Everyone in the world should read this book and everyone who lives in a consumer obsessed society like the United States should be forced too I m only half way through this book and already know that this is possibly one of the most important books I have read in my life Not only does it clearly and logically present everything that is wrong with our obsessiveness with producingand doing it faster, which most every socially conscious person is already aware of, it also lays out very clear logical alternatives that can change our society from one obsessed with industrial growth to one focused on improving the way humanity utilizes our natural resources in a way that is muchin harmony with nature rather then the current method of the raping and pillaging of the earth that will, if no change is made, inevitably lead to if not the demise of humanity, then war and famine that this world has not yet experienced In short he shows the reader everything that is distressingly wrong with our globalized society then gives the reader realistic hope for the future READ THIS BOOK The book was published in 2007, so it is interesting to see just how McKibben may have been on the right track with his opinions One of his main points is to show how shifting to local economies will mean less stuff butdurability Part I After GrowthQuote by John Maynard Keynes say, two thousand years before Christ down to the beginning of the eighteenth century, there was really no great change in the standard of living of the average man in the civilized centers of the earth Ups and The book was published in 2007, so it is interesting to see just how McKibben may have been on the right track with his opinions One of his main points is to show how shifting to local economies will mean less stuff butdurability Part I After GrowthQuote by John Maynard Keynes say, two thousand years before Christ down to the beginning of the eighteenth century, there was really no great change in the standard of living of the average man in the civilized centers of the earth Ups and downs, certainly visitations of plague, famine and war, golden intervals, but no progressive violent change But in 1712, something new finally happened British inventor Thomas Newcomen developed the first practical steam engine It could replace 500 horses walking in a circle The industrial revolution was about to begin In 1776, Adam Smith noted in The Wealth of Nations that continued increase of national wealth increases wages So growth became everything It was the operative word and still is When Reagan became president, growth was everything for both liberals and conservatives Limits were out By the presidency of George W Bush, tax cuts were used to stimulate growth Despite the disastrous consequences, that theory still holds sway in conservative circles And I should add to the extreme But McKibben points out that growth is no longer making us happy This may be his main theme Here s another fact Though our economy has been growing, most of us have relatively little to show for it The income disparity between the top and the bottom is enormous And that disparity is worse now than when McKibben wrote this book The liberal argument is to spread the growth aroundBut McKibben believes that will not solve the problem Growth simply isn t enriching most of us He next discusses the effects of growth on climate change And they are enormous We need to connect our economic policies with the environment and our own life experiences Joy needs to be considered Part II The Year of Eating Locally Four companies slaughter 81% of American beef Cargill controls 45% of the globe s grain trade Archer Daniels Midland controls another 30% of the grain trade In 15 years, Idaho potato farmers have been cut in half to less than 800 About 89% of American chickens are under contract to big companies, usually in broiler houses up to 500 feel long holding 30,000 orchickens The list could go on with virtually all commodities The farmers in this process live often miserable lives Can you imagine raising chickens for Perdue They become Land owning serfs in an agricultural feudal system They make a pittance Cheap rock lobster is often harvested by divers who show signs of neurological damage because they use ancient scuba equipment Again, that s just one example There are manyOne farm in Utah has 1.5 million hogs andsewage problems than Los Angeles This is not true farming Abusing the environment can be efficient in a way Just forget about the aftereffects Our food system has become increasingly vulnerable to sabotage Why hasn t it been done yet Maybe because it s not as bloody and terrorizing as a massacre Half the chicken in British supermarkets is contaminated with campylobacter Live birds are stacked in enormous towers while awaiting slaughter They shit on each other People want cheap food Ground water is running out Places that are currently running dry California, India, Mexico, China, Saudi Arabia We are paying the price for the deep wells The fact is, however, that small farms producefood You can intercrop different kinds of plants Remember that and support them The Cuban boycott helped Cuban farms to get small It probably saved them Part 3 All for One, or One for AllHouses are now being developed to help people stay to themselves As Margaret Thatcher said, There are no such thing as society There are just individuals and their families The public realm is coming under increasing attack Selfishness rules, even in Christianity We now have hyper individualism The former Soviet Union is the most toxic place on earth When Wal Mart expands, all sorts of small businesses disappear It eliminates 1 1 2 jobs for every 1 job it creates More Wal Marts meanspoverty People are happier with marriage, families, friends, community The key to change is local Part 4 The Wealth of Communities Interesting, in this chapter, McKibben talks about a small radio station When Congress deregulated radio and ended the fairness doctrine, the change was dramatic Hate radio began And Clear Channel controlled over 1200 stations How is this deregulation Locals could not even get local news on the air In Powell, Wyoming, a red state town, the citizens kept a Wal Mart out and built a clothing store Americans are the energy use champions of all time we require a lot of fossil fuels Japan leads the world in building a decentralized solar panel energy economy Hyper individualism has been spread by our tv shows People around the world want to live like that Vermont has a family forest program for local lumber that preserves forests Part 5 The Durable Future About 30 million Chinese people a year pour out of the countryside into the city, the greatest migration in history They want to be like America It s just not possible for the earth to allow that It cannot even handle one America The deserts of the world are growing relentlessly Mexico lost 1.3 million small farmers thanks to NAFTA An impoverished coffee grower in Uganda gets 200 shillings for a kilo of coffee Starbucks gets the equivalent of 5,000 shillings for one cup of coffee All of the value items we buy at the grocery store It s the same way A surprising fact McKibben saw many protestors in China Farmers and workers were upset about their treatment McKibben s hope of developingcommunity spirit here in the US does not fill me with the optimism he wants Let me finish with this disturbing bit of information In 2003, the US led transition government of Iraq in one of the first laws adopted protected the patenting of plants and seeds, even though 97% of Iraqi farmers used seeds from local markets or grown from their own crops This was the Bush administration cooperating with the likes of Monsanto, Syngenta, Bayer, and Dow Chemical Daniel Amstutz, who oversaw agricultural reconstruction in Iraq, was a former Cargill executive That says it all, doesn t it When I saw the title Deep Economy I had a sort of fascination as if I were watching a train wreck.Surely it would be pushing for radical socialism for the sake of radical environmentalism Instead Bill McKibben wrote a book I m still grappling with.His first line of attack is economic growth itself.First he argues economic growth is unsustainable This is his strongest argument in the short term but his weakest argument over the long haul.There are alternatives to fossil fuel when it becomes t When I saw the title Deep Economy I had a sort of fascination as if I were watching a train wreck.Surely it would be pushing for radical socialism for the sake of radical environmentalism Instead Bill McKibben wrote a book I m still grappling with.His first line of attack is economic growth itself.First he argues economic growth is unsustainable This is his strongest argument in the short term but his weakest argument over the long haul.There are alternatives to fossil fuel when it becomes too expensive to run our economies We won t have an end to growth but simply growth with different economies In the transition the short term it will appear economic growth has stalled.However there s apressing problem if we continue to grow off fossil fuel we risk massive damage to the oceans, our climate and the air.McKibben s strongest argument is one I actually first ran into in Richard Layard s Happiness Economic growth is no longer making us happy and it s actually beginning to harm things that do make us happy family, friendship, community, leisure time.It s hard to emphasize this enough but we are as irrational as a gold fish If you place fish food in a goldfish s tank they ll eat until they die We do the same with income We tend to treat income as a good long past when we started giving upimportant things for it With our obesity epidemic we may belike the goldfish than we think.On a grand scale a focus on economic growth also leads to isolation Income divides between the wealthy and everyone else tend to grow faster than the economy Mass migrations tend to leave people not trusting the newcomers or even their own neighbors People tend to Bowl Alone.McKibben calls this blindness to people autistic economics McKibben I should note does think economic growth is useful to a point, especially for developing nations.McKibben then attempts to describe what a replacement to our dysfunctional economy might be He does not offer up tired communist or socialist centralism He moves on to local economies, farmer s markets, an attack on industrial farming, and a focus on local culture.McKibben suggests the move to massive industrial farms using expensive chemicals, shipping their products halfway around the world, might be better replaced by a focus on local farms feeding local people.McKibben also suggests local media radio stations as an alternative to the media conglomerates that feed the same bland news and entertainment to Eureka, California as to Eureka, Kansas.McKibben does a good job attacking our goldfish like hunger for faster and faster growth long after it s started to hurt us McKibben has to be tentative and experimental in suggesting an alternative because alternatives to the hedonistic merry go round are just being tried This was my first book written by Bill McKibben, a journalist and environmentalist I think I have been wanting to lighten my carbon footprint but needed a little guidance on how to go about doing it Living in Europe has opened me to beaccepting of local suppliers and retailers the fact that shopping at our base commissary is a chore could be another reason I am happy to buy and live the European way So it should come as no surprise that the chapters dealing with American style of agric This was my first book written by Bill McKibben, a journalist and environmentalist I think I have been wanting to lighten my carbon footprint but needed a little guidance on how to go about doing it Living in Europe has opened me to beaccepting of local suppliers and retailers the fact that shopping at our base commissary is a chore could be another reason I am happy to buy and live the European way So it should come as no surprise that the chapters dealing with American style of agriculture and the end of factory farming industrial farms were the most impactful to me I was also very interested in how politics were given the local is better treatment Granted, the author lives in Vermont, aliberal area of the U.S., so his ideas work because the state population is muchlikely to want to live locally The only area of the book I had to disagree with is the part where he talks about local currency it seemed to beof a throwback to the early days of the republic and was difficult for those living in border areas to live and work with differing currencies of the individual states I think most of the ideas found in this book resonate with me because I read about them post 2008 global recession, so the ideas were not as radical some were indeed necessary and some were probably implemented in 2009 and thereafter as they were in 2007 Overall, I found this book to be useful in helping me start my journey to living less globally andlocally If you ve never been exposed to environmentalism or green philosophy this work can serve as a general introduction But, frankly, who hasn t been exposed to this stuff A thin work of popular journalism with no substantive economic analysis at all. I picked up Deep Economy as a sort of economic primer, hoping to become a bitfluent in the language of acquisitions and nets and grosses I also hoped that Bill McKibben would help me find a better response to those who still haven t converted to the cult of buying local And in the first chapter, Bill McKibben clarifies GDP and GNP just enough to then claim that economics is much, muchthan acronyms that try to measure the quest for monetary growth Part personal challenge, part econ I picked up Deep Economy as a sort of economic primer, hoping to become a bitfluent in the language of acquisitions and nets and grosses I also hoped that Bill McKibben would help me find a better response to those who still haven t converted to the cult of buying local And in the first chapter, Bill McKibben clarifies GDP and GNP just enough to then claim that economics is much, muchthan acronyms that try to measure the quest for monetary growth Part personal challenge, part economic treatise, Deep Economy articulates an economy that keeps people in mind, and that s willing to say enough when what we have is, in fact, enough.McKibben practices deep economics in his community near Burlington, Vermont From his year long pledge to eat locally and sustainably to the numerous examples of others whose livelihoods may never be accounted for in national economic statistics, McKibben stands by his claim thatand better can no longer be the sole indicators of a thriving economy Though he doesn t promote a new and specific means of measuring economic success, McKibben points out various measurements in other countries, including the index of well being in Great Britain and the index of community vitality in Canada He also includes as examples of successful local economies, Ithaca, NY where locals trade a community currency and Kerala, one of the poorest states in India, which has one of the highest literacy rates in the world.Perhaps the greatest accomplishment of Deep Economy is to nudge us non economists into thinking economically And by that, I simply mean questioning how we can arrange our bartering and trading, buying and selling to affirm ourselves and our communities That kind of economics doesn t even need an acronym I really enjoyed the chapter on local food and McKibben s analysis of the heavy oil inputs into our subsidized corn fed food chain Otherwise, this is a cliche and shrill regurgitation of the already nauseating _Bowling Alone_, Michael Pollan s excellent _Omnivore s Dilemma_, and all anti Wal Mart sentiment that comes from overeducated champagne liberals in small towns like Middlebury, VT, Boulder, CO and Ann Arbor, MI I really enjoyed the chapter on local food and McKibben s analysis of the heavy oil inputs into our subsidized corn fed food chain Otherwise, this is a cliche and shrill regurgitation of the already nauseating _Bowling Alone_, Michael Pollan s excellent _Omnivore s Dilemma_, and all anti Wal Mart sentiment that comes from overeducated champagne liberals in small towns like Middlebury, VT, Boulder, CO and Ann Arbor, MI This was a really great book but I m giving it four stars just because McKibben never mentioned socialism I totally agree that our economy cannot continue to grow on a finite planet, but capitalism requires growth Thus, the only logical way out is ecosocialism I always say there s two things every environmentalist should be socialist and vegan Still a great read, I love mckibben This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers To view it, click here I m really enjoying this one It s a lot the same sort of thing that John Michael Greer covered in The Long Descent, except that McKibben has a much lighter, jocular,informal style with illustrative anecdotes that make the reader feelconnected to the subject, such as when he interviews employees at a shower curtain factory in China about their quality of life On the downside comparing him to Greer , I find his name dropping annoying When Greer cites another work, he tends to giv I m really enjoying this one It s a lot the same sort of thing that John Michael Greer covered in The Long Descent, except that McKibben has a much lighter, jocular,informal style with illustrative anecdotes that make the reader feelconnected to the subject, such as when he interviews employees at a shower curtain factory in China about their quality of life On the downside comparing him to Greer , I find his name dropping annoying When Greer cites another work, he tends to give some background on what the work is and why it matters McKibben, on the other hand, may mention three or four different authors works in a single paragraph, with nocontext than a number to look up in the bibliography I compare these two because I see them hitting a lot of the same topics and citing some of the same works, notably E.F Schumacher s Small is Beautiful The theme so far We used to think thatis better, and back when our ancestors were starving and freezing in dirt floored cabins, it was true But now that even poor people in America have a staggering amount of affluence compared to those struggling forebears, consuming the world s resources at a staggering and unsustainable rate, it s not making us any happier As we ve becomevoracious consumers, we ve also experienced increases in divorce, alcoholism, suicide, and depression McKibben suggests that we need to break out of our present pattern of thinking to learn a new strategy for pursuing happiness before we destroy ourselves and the planet s ability to support life Edit I added the following after finishing the book It s amazing how much this guy has traveled I think his anecdotes from around the world added tremendously to the storytelling, to relating his principles by way of real life examples "/>
  • Hardcover
  • 272 pages
  • Deep Economy: The Wealth of Communities and the Durable Future
  • Bill McKibben
  • English
  • 05 February 2017
  • 0805076263