Sunday, August 7, 2011

James K. Galbraith on Economic Consequences of Rising Resource Costs

This is joint work with Jing Chen and it’s work in progress addressed to a question that we believe has not be adequately dealt with, in fact barely dealt with at all, in any major tradition — neither in the mainstream nor in the Keynesian or progressive responses to the crisis so far.

The question that we are addressing, that we would like to address, is to the implications of rising resource costs for economic systems in general and for the structure of economic society.

Our approach is to treat the economy as having the same form as a biophysical system — something that it obviously does — insofar as economic life is part of human life and involves interaction between organized society and the natural world.

The meaning of this idea, in essence, is that you have to be able to get more value out of your environment than it costs to extract it. Otherwise, you cannot live.

That is true for any form of living organism and it ought to be true, certainly is true, for society as a whole....

This is an important talk given by Prof. Galbraith at the Association for Evolutionary Economics (AFEE) session of the Allied Social Sciences Association (ASSA) meeting on January 9, 2011. It was transcribed by selise, who posted it to her diary at FireDogLake. Thanks, selise.


Clonal said...

If you are looking at this topic, I suggest that you read George Mobus' blog Question Everything

GLH said...

I read Firedoglake everyday and I'm surprised I missed the piece on Galbraith. Thank you for posting the link because it was well worth the read. Prof. Galbraith points out that capitalist economies are run by banks and ours certainly is. He also gives seven ideas to change things.
But, I think you will agree it will take a severe crisis to dislodge the hold banks have on both the political parties and our government.
It's obvious that the present admistration will do nothing to change things and hopefully it will be replaced in a little over a year, unfortnately it will probably be by a Republican who by definition will be a neo-liberal and want to balance the budget. Can you see any of the suggestions Mr. Galbraith made being implemented before 2016? That is long time to suffer.

Kevin Fathi said...

I posted a link to an audio file of Dr. Galbraith's presentation back in January. Dr. Galbraith's hypothesis would explain the push for austerity in Europe and the U.S.

Kevin Fathi said...
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