Tag Archives: throughput

Evolution Not Revolution

Achieving a sustainable world economy would be nothing less than a great step in human evolution, comparable with the mastery of fire or the development of settled agriculture as opposed to hunting and gathering. It concerns the whole world and needs to be tackled on a world, not just a national, basis.  ... 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

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

Employment and the Steady State

It is necessary here to repeat a point made or implied earlier, that the level and rate of change of economic activity and the level of unemployment are to a large extent independent of one another. Not totally independent of course, each is one determinant of the other.  ... Read more

Interest Rates and Ratio Distortion

It is necessary for a lender of money to charge interest because the purchasing power of each money unit is generally expected to fall with time. This has been the trend historically and the very operation of the economy tends to make it so.  ... 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

Value Inflation – the Trigger, not the Bullet

The direct addition of value inflation to the rate of price increases is quite small. The larger effect arises from secondary influences, in whose shaping human psychology plays an important part. These influences are triggered by the small value inflation component and its corollary, a slowing of the rate of net throughput increase relative to gross throughput increase.  ... Read more

Global Inequalities in Wealth

Another misconception held by many in both “rich” and “poor” countries is that the “rich” should go on making and using ever more goods and services, thereby “creating wealth” that can somehow find its way to the “poor” nations, making them “richer”.  ... Read more

Minerals in National Parks – Leave Them in the Ground?

The extraction of minerals often leads not just to the consumption and depletion of the mined material, but also to the unintended but unavoidable consumption and depletion of rich and necessary biological resources, which are quite wasted in the process. This happens when minerals are located in nature reserves and national parks.  ... Read more

Visual and Noise Pollution

In terms of physically damaging, poisoning, or depleting the earth’s living environment, there are no such things as visual or noise pollution.

These are red herrings in the sense that, for example, people who object to the noise of rock music, traffic, or children at play, or object to the replacement of an ornamental old building by a stark new one, feel entitled to attach their cause to the environmental cause (feeling licensed by the use of the word “pollution” in describing what they object to), thereby distracting attention from issues of real importance to the living environment and diverting energy that should go into resolving those issues in the environment’s favour.  ... Read more

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