We need to talk about growth. (And we need to do the sums as well.)
In my opinion, the greatest scandal of philosophy is that, while all around us the world of nature perishes – and not just the world of nature alone – philosophers continue to talk,sometimes cleverly and sometimes not, about the question of whether the world exists. Karl Popper, Two Faces of Common Sense
1. Why should we talk about growth?
Growth is a big issue, and getting bigger all the time, but not one that yet generates serious discussion in the community. Nor has it been the subject of mainstream political critique. That economic growth is good is a view unchallenged by any major political party in Australia, with the exception of the Greens – and more than anything else it is their questioning of growth that has seen the major parties condemn the Greens as a fringe political movement.
No doubt there are deep philosophical – or at least ideological – reasons for this, but the problem might also be explained by our simple failure to understand the mathematics of growth. Continue reading We need to talk about growth. (And we need to do the sums as well.)