Tag Archives: economic growth

The Derivatives of Wealth

The terms derivative and differential are used here in their mathematical sense, denoting rates of change.

Gross national product and living standard are treated as measures of quantity of wealth. In fact, they are not the quantity but its first derivative or first differential, the rate of wealth-throughput.  ... Read more

Who needs the Snail Darter?

A subtle, indirect but nevertheless important further way in which environmental depletion damages economic health is through the extinction of species.

A particular species may not be throughput directly in the sense that a particular economic activity is based directly on that species.  ... Read more

Limits to Growth?

Current economics assumes a world of unlimited resources, unlimited wealth. No matter how rapidly a resource is used, either (i) “They” will always find more, or (ii) substitute resources will always be found to serve to any required extent as well or better in place of the depleted resource.  ... Read more

Environment versus Economic Progress

The fierce conflicts between conservationists on one side and workers, industrialists, and some politicians on the other arise from a misconception.

Both parties in fact desire the same goal – economic well-being. But the latter and many of the former believe that environmental conservation and economic progress are conflicting aims, between which a balance or compromise must be found.  ... Read more

Digression: “So Long As We Profit, Costs Elsewhere Aren’t Our Problem”?

A fault of flat earth economics as practiced in free enterprise economies is that it chops a nation’s economy into sections that are too often treated as being self-contained and independent of other sections. This is not a useful or realistic view.  ... Read more

When the Boom comes

During the 1970’s and 1980’s governments and people generally in the more perfluent nations were waiting for an economic “upturn” or “recovery” to reduce what had become chronic high unemployment. The underlying assumption was that the high throughput-increase rates, the so-called “economic growth” rates of the 1950’s and 1960’s, were normal and that the more sluggish throughput-increase (TI) rates of latter years were an abnormal phenomenon that could be expected to speed up in time through this or that brilliant policy initiative or going back to the early economics of the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries; or by eliminating (depending on your point of view) businessmen, unions, migrants, taxes, civil servants, or computers; or just by waiting.  ... Read more

Digression: Renewal and Recycling of Resources; Wages and Jobs

It is possible for some time to consume a resource faster than its renewal rate, just as a business can for some time consume its accumulated money capital faster than it takes money in (this is only an illustration and does not confuse money with wealth).  ... Read more

Economic Growth Redefined

A more accurate definition of economic growth would be any change in the relation between the throughput and renewal rates, for a given resource for which throughput exceeds renewal, in which change the ratio of the throughput rate to the renewal rate falls, or conversely the ratio of renewal to throughput increases.  ... Read more

Budget Balancing Methods – Cost or Gain?

Measures to reduce expenditure and increase revenue raising by governments will often be seen in current economic terms as “costs” to the nation. But if seen in the light of the ideas put forward in the post about “Costs – What Really Costs Us and What Doesn’t?” they are economic gains.  ... Read more

The Throughput Chain

The throughput chain comprises several “links”, different processes that follow one another but do not all necessarily take place at the same rate. The processes commonly are: the extraction or controlling of wealth; its rendering or structuring into saleable goods and services; the sale of those goods and services; and their subsequent degradation into waste matter from which wealth may be renewed.  ... Read more