Social advance

To recap what I’ve written elsewhere about social change, and specifically how capitalism isn’t the problem:

I take a narrow view of capitalism as private ownership of capital, and I’m still all for that. OTOH Friedmanism must die. Greed seeks to exploit. Capitalism is just a system of ownership. Communist counties make it clear that alternatives are no less greedy. Don’t shoot the messenger. We need major change.  Tearing down capitalism isn’t the solution.  Stakeholder capitalism is. Capitalism blended with socialism is the way: I consider the Nordic and Kiwi models pretty close to ideal.


Malthusian ideas that growth is unsustainable have been wrong so many times (Peak Oil ..) that I just ignore apocalyptic predictions now. They’re also an indulgence of white privilege. Most people need a lot more growth to make their life even mildly bearable. Redistribution helps, but we also have a lot more lifting of humanity to do.

There are specific cases of unsustainability that need to be urgently addressed: atmospheric carbon and methane, obviously; over fishing; clearing natural environments.

But I believe these are addressed by more abundance not less. Desperate poor people cut rainforests.

The other key is less greed, which doesn’t come from any particular economic system. I put a lot of faith in the Spiral Dynamics idea of social advance: enlightenment, holism, humanocracy.