La Mouvement Décroissance

Unsustainable is a word that must explode, not creep, into our everyday vocabulary. Our economies, as they currently are measured, cannot continue to grow.

I chose décroissance over degrowth for the title because the French word hints at the verb décroireto disbelieve. This is important because, for the concept, it is necessary for one to disbelieve in the current capitalist model that demands growth as its life blood. On both sides of the Atlantic, those who pretend to lead in the great drama of politics extol economic growth as the basis of national success and happiness. Growth is measured by an outdated parameter called Gross Domestic Product, a measure that does not care how the jobs and productivity are created. The classic example of its failure is that, from the aspect of GDP, the Exxon-Valdez oil spill off the Alaska coast in 1989 was a “success.”

David Suzuki, who, based on a 2004 CBC poll, is considered the 5th greatest Canadian ever and, by a process of biotic elimination, the greatest living Canadian, has, since the 1980’s, been a high-profile advocate for reducing our impact on the environment. Thanks to Suzuki and other caring thinkers, many now kind of “get” the fact that we in “The West” pamper ourselves by using up precious resources in obscene amounts to provide very special goods and services. We consume too much of everything (energy, minerals, meat, fish, forests, chemicals, drugs and yes, even health care) and have grown to believe that these relative luxuries are things to which we in the West are entitled.This “entitled” feeling battles with the growing guilt and, if we are honest about it, usually wins.

From David Suzuki's hand to mine...
From David Suzuki’s hand to mine…

Continue reading “La Mouvement Décroissance”

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Imagination, Humanism, Theism and Note-ism

Human imagination, like technology, can be wonderfully helpful or incredibly destructive. A fair amount of what I will eventually have to say on the imagination comes from yet another CBC Ideas broadcast/podcast. Other sources for this and future blogs are described in the paragraph below.

As for the stuff on humanism, theism and any other isms that might come up in this and future posts, I will acknowledge the sources where I can. Throughout my life I have collected thoughts and ideas from various thinkers. I have made notes on these ideas and recorded tapes of radio broadcasts before podcasts made it easier. I have a box of small spiral notepads that go back to when I was 20 – about 48 years ago. Other formats galore, though some have yellowed, remain intact. My mother, Angel, saved two funny letters from sea cadet camp (at 13) and two years of letters I wrote home to Montreal from Trinidad between 1965 and 1967. Lots of scattered notes, names, numbers and ideas. Blah blah ad infinitumContinue reading “Imagination, Humanism, Theism and Note-ism”