The great nutrient collapse

A very important article about research which raises the role of climate change (more CO2 in the atmosphere) in causing food crops to grow faster and uptake fewer nutrients in the process, leaving us with fewer vitamins, iron, etc. – i.e. growth of food linked to the decline of health.

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A Catalan political party argues for degrowth | Steady State Manchester

Remember when politicians in the UK wouldn’t risk arguing strongly against austerity? That changed with the June General Election but there are still things that appear to be “unsayable” in polite political company. One of those is to suggest that the goal of so called economic “growth” should be abandoned. You can’t say that: political death! Not so for the independent republican left group CUP (Popular Unity List) that today launched a debate on degrowth in the Parliament of Catalonia, the region known for innovative, progressive politics as well as for a contentious debate about independence from Spain. There follows a translation (from Spanish) of an interview with Sergi Saladié, spokesperson for the CUP group, from the website 15-15-15.

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A lesson from Hurricane Irma: capitalism can’t save the planet – it can only destroy it | George Monbiot

Wednesday 13 September 2017

The perpetual quest for growth drives our economics. That’s why our environment and financial system lurch from crisis to crisis. Under the neoliberal theory of the financial system, there cannot be a problem. It postulates that as long as environmental goods are correctly priced, neither planning nor regulation is required. Any attempt by governments or citizens to change the likely course of events is unwarranted and misguided. But there’s a flaw. Hurricanes do not respond to market signals. The plastic fibres in our oceans, food and drinking water do not respond to market signals. Nor does the collapse of insect populations, or coral reefs, or the extirpation of orangutans from Borneo. The unregulated market is as powerless in the face of these forces as the people in Florida who resolved to fight Hurricane Irma by shooting it. It is the wrong tool, the wrong approach, the wrong system.

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Commons in the Time of Monsters: an Introduction to P2P Politics | P2P Foundation

An event in London UK next Monday Sept 18

After 40 years of neoliberalization, the promised end of history has led to a decomposition of established hierarchical systems, including politics. This process has culminated in Brexit and Trump. While there are strong reactions against these, the current of political change cannot be rewound back towards neoliberalism. However, alternatives based on the logic of networks and Peer to Peer are emerging and gaining attention.

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Degrowth featured at BBC news leads to harsh critique from US conversative newspaper

An interesting plug for Degrowth in a 2 minute subtitled BBC video, and a conservative rejoinder.

From: federico demaria
Sent: Mon, 04 Sep 2017

Degrowth at BBC news :

Jason Hickel: ‘Our addiction to economic growth is killing us’ – Viewsnight

In this Viewsnight, anthropologist Jason Hickel asks if economic growth really makes our lives better. He is the author of The Divide: A Brief Guide to Global Inequality and It’s Solutions

RESPONSE by conservative US newspaper

The far-left has an idiotic new craze: reduce economic growth

From their perspective, government shouldn’t simply control the means of economic production, it should actively work to reduce GDP.

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Inside the new economic science of capitalism’s slow-burn energy collapse | P2P Foundation

New scientific research is quietly rewriting the fundamentals of economics. The new economic science shows decisively that the age of endlessly growing industrial capitalism, premised on abundant fossil fuel supplies, is over.

The long-decline of capitalism-as-we-know-it, the new science shows, began some decades ago, and is on track to accelerate well before the end of the 21st century.

With capitalism-as-we-know it in inexorable decline, the urgent task ahead is to rewrite economics to fit the real-world: and, accordingly, to redesign our concepts of value and prosperity, precisely to rebuild our societies with a view of adapting to this extraordinary age of transition.

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Peer-to-peer production and the partner state | Red Pepper

Michel Bauwens and Vasilis Kostakis argue that we need to move to a commons-centric society – with a state fit for the digital age

August 27, 2017

What would it mean to go beyond the traditional models of the state, including the redistributionist welfare state, to a state that could create the conditions for the creative autonomy of citizens to play a far greater role in their collective flourishing? The social knowledge economy, rooted in an already-existing socio-economic practice – that of commons-based peer production – could be one model.

Peer production is on the rise as a new pathway of value creation, where peer-to-peer infrastructures allow people to communicate, self-organise and co-create digital commons of knowledge, software and design. Think of the free encyclopedia Wikipedia, the myriad of free and open-source projects such as Linux, or open design and hardware communities such as Wikihouse, L’Atelier Paysan, Sensorica or Farmhack.

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