Should we have rationing/austerity

Should we bring back war-time rationing to save the planet?

[ 12/November/21 ]

Absolutely not.

The problem is not the ability of the planet to provide us with food.

We could feed everyone from the land areas of California if used efficiently.

The issues are deeply within the structure of the economic system, and the sort of value that markets measure.

And before anyone accuses me of being communist – no I am not. Central control is not a solution to the problem. We are dealing with complexity, and it demands both freedom and diversity, and they require cooperation – between all levels and instances of agent.

What we most need to get people caring about the environment is meeting all of their reasonable needs – not making them worse off.

We need abundance, not scarcity. The economic system needs scarcity to work. When most things were genuinely scarce that wasn’t an issue. Now that we have advanced automation that is perfectly capable of meeting the reasonable needs of everyone, then it is an issue – because the economic system cannot deliver that sort of abundance – it is contrary to the internal incentive structures of markets values.

Fundamental reform is required, and it is a deeply complex issue. Anyone who thinks it can be done simply is more problem than solution.

About Ted Howard NZ

Seems like I might be a cancer survivor. Thinking about the systemic incentives within the world we find ourselves in, and how we might adjust them to provide an environment that supports everyone (no exceptions) with reasonable security, tools, resources and degrees of freedom, and reasonable examples of the natural environment; and that is going to demand responsibility from all of us - see www.tedhowardnz.com/money
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