Monday, August 11, 2014

De-growth conference Leipzig 2014

If you are interested in an alternative to the current capitalist growth model and would like to be inspired, you should follow the 2014 de-growth conference to be held in Leipzig from 2-6 September. I read the abstracts of conference papers and have decided to go to Leipzig and meet the authors.

Working with my wife on a book about world ports and the history and future of the world economic system and community, I hope to meet people in Leipzig who will inspire me.

You can find information about the Leipzig conference by clicking HERE.

To give you an idea of the papers to be discussed at the conference, I copy the abstract of one of them:

Contributors: Bourcarde, Kay, Dr. (Institut für Wachstumsstudien)

Ehrenamtlicher Vorsitzender des Instituts für Wachstumsstudien; Leiter des Referats für Beschäftigungspolitik und Fachkräftesicherung im Ministerium für Soziales, Arbeit, Gesundheit und Demografie RLP .
Scientific paper contribution: The misunderstanding of “Growing Growth”
The paper is co-authored by Dr. Karsten Herzmann

Abstract: The paper addresses a core assumption of economic policy, namely, the assumption growth by steady high rates being typical to economies. In the seventies such exponential growth has been criticized in the bestseller “The Limits to Growth” to be a hazard to the environment and to mankind as a whole. However, as the paper demonstrates, almost all western economies show mere linear growth. Hence, the continuous decrease of growth rates must not be considered an aberration from economic normality, which needs to be explained, but to be typical for modern economies. Since growth rates nevertheless are the most prominent indicator for the success of economic policy, politicians still are constantly urged to take “countermeasures”. A multitude of fundamental changes in economic and social policies may therefore to be revaluated: In contrary to the usual critique of being ineffective or unsocial the issue addressed here is that by such reformations politics tragically tries to improve the conditions for growth in order to “restore” a normality, which, empirically, has never existed.

1 comment:

Suzanne said...

There has to be growth!, the cancer cell says. More and more commodities. And more and more illness on the side of those who produce all these commodities, from Bangladesh to Berlin, from Shanghai to Chicago. Full shelves, but the people are empty and burned out. Living work is turned into dead matter. Illness expresses this process, which is in permanent progress and gaining ground. I’ve read the other day, that everyone owns 10,000 things. That’s 10,000 tombstones.
In fantasy films: the warlock bans the life of his killed victims into items that get charged this way. In Capitalism: the commodities contain broken bones, hands chopped off by machines and bodies burned by chemicals, i.e. the illness of the producers, and therefore the commodities are valuable.
But where change would be necessary to make an end to exploitation and capitalistic illness, there is therapy and doctoring instead, and these are commodities, too, existing also in excess: In 2012 (in Germany) 633 million pharmaceutical packages were prescribed, that are 37.9 billion daily doses. Somewhere else military tanks are mobilized against rebellious people, here the prescription pad is used. Without connecting to illness as a protesting force and without practical possibilities against doctoring and therapy nothing will ever going to change.
See also on the internet: „Identity of Illness and Capital“ and „Iatro-Imperialism“.