Debate on Twitter is possible, but not if you have 6 participants because the @name list means that you are down to 100 characters or less. So I have been invited to invite everyone round to my place here. Welcome.
The question was "Is it OK to grow our way out of recession".
Natch, we disagree with the Coalition who believe the
Labour, insofar as it has a policy, believes that we must simply grow our way out of the recession. "Derr".
The Green Party has, rightly, always been critical of economic growth because of the inconvenient truth that it is impossible to grow indefinitely in a finite space, and to take forever more from a finite resource. We aim for a steady state economy, where we live in balance with Nature's resources.
In this steady state, we will not have excesses of wealth and poverty, and we will be on a tendency for everyone to have enough. "Tendency" mind. We are realists, not Utopians.
So what do we do? Side with the ToryLibs and enjoy it as the UK wallows ever deeper in the mire of recession? Or change our stance on growth, and side with Labour?
Happily, that is not the choice we face. The reality is a bit more subtle than that.
What we are in fact against is growth in throughput of materials. We have no objection to the growth in Gross National Happiness, growth in knowledge, growth in the care of the elderly and sick. What we are against is the totally irrational and fantastical idea that we can continue to expand our ecological footprint on this planet.
We. Simply. Cannot. Do.That.
It is the throughput of materials, mining at one end, and churning out waste, toxic or otherwise, at the other. That is what has to stop. That and the destruction of renewable resources like soil, fisheries and forests.
We live in an unsustainable economy that provides superficial and unstable wealth to some, and hands out unemployment and poverty to others, in the process, wrecking everything that is beautiful.
We need to work towards a Steady State Economy, where we humans live in a dynamic, fluid, but basically harmonious relationship with the processes of our planetary system, notably the global heat control mechanisms.
This requires a radical shift in the way we carry out our economic activity, and indeed how we look at economics.
Here is a brief overview of green economics.
Here is an interesting take on what is meant by work, linking physics, economics and biology.
Here is a proposal to change the JSA into a Green Wage Subsidy, so that we emerge out the other side of a recession with a strong green core to the economy, and the foundation of Citizen's Income at the same time.
Here is the same proposal with cleaned up language, Government for the enticement of.
The banking system needs radical change, because it demands and creates economic growth
Both show that green economics is real economics, and conventional economics is a distortion of reality.
Back to the question: How do we make the transition from where we are now?
We are in a position where we can offer Green Growth (or "Green Development", for people who sufer an allergic reaction on exposure to the word "growth").
We can offer hundreds of thousands of jobs in a Green New Deal.
I advocate a GND+, where the GWS is added in. In my book Bills of Health (1996), I calculated that this could produce between 1 and 2 million jobs, at a time when the unemployment figures lay between 1 and 2 million.
So there we have it.
Our starter for 10.
Let debate begin.