2202. Techno scientific elites and Trump support.

Not Noring’s intent but does help explain the animosity of those not in the career paths who became Trump supports why hey did. Here clearly scientists are assocaited with the elite, the same elite that supports and defends the rest of the elite.

Quote is from Noring , Economists and the Powerful

What we have seen up until now is how funding, fame, Nobel MemorialPrizes and resources were allocated to those who have generated the economic theories that most furthered the aims of the scientific technological elite. A very important part of the mechanisms used was to control what information and research is held to be reliable and whatis to be excluded as at best unorthodox “fringe theories.”

2201. State and economics

quoted in Haring, Power and Economics.

During the war, the Department of War and the Navy insisted on
changes in the economics curriculum that the AEA felt obliged to institute. The association reformed economics education from college-level to PhD degree, enshrining the new interpretation of economics. The AEA also became involved in rebuilding and reshaping economics education in the devastated areas overseas. The US contributed free books and copies of the American Economic Review along with lists of recommended texts and cash donations to scholarly libraries in Europe and East Asia. The association was charged with revising curricula and rehabilitating and vetting faculties in the defeated nations (Bernstein 2001).

Seems to me thta any serious attempt to write a new textbook needs to give an honest view if this remarkable pst.


2200. Trump in action?

he does not seem to be doing very much. Are we going to just drift into this election which becomes anti-climactic?

at the rallies he keeps saying to arrest them all. Is there a chance he might try that? Does a narcissist speak their ideas more loudly in public that in private or the reverse?

2199. Ulrich Beck -recruit technocracy

“What must be done is to mobilize the strongest ally of the authoritarian technocracy, and draw it over to the side of life and the future – and that ally is the technocracy itself. The prescription is as clear as daylight.”

Excerpt From
Ecological Politics in an Age of Risk

2198. resisting change in basics.


making a few assumptions..

We have to do go through a rough period of breakdowns with economy, governance and climate (in the presence of Covid) as an entropic decay of existing institutions. 

But what if building during the period of breakdowns, which we are already in, delays the breakdowns making rebuilding even harder because of using up the time? 

And further, those with assets will, post breakdown, instead of looking for new structures in politics and economics, attempt to return to the old structures, characterized by the concentration of wealth and power, furthering an ideology of holding on. – sea walls in Miami rather than trying to deal with the cause of rising seas.

Does economics play a supporting role in such delays, holding on, rather than seeking the better?

2197. Joseph Henrich

Review in the NYT Why we in the West are so Weird.

Henrich is saying that kinship systems are core. I always wondered what it meant that ancients worked these out so early, such complex cognitive maps. This book helps by making strong suggestions that imply that Gardenworld, as a reform agenda for the future, is caught between Greek abstraction supporting empire and technology, and power, and kinship systems that remain local, as cognitive maps of the maps of the world. Are we torn between these two systems? Is a third possible?

Or is the task in life to find a culture which balances both without the current result that one or the other – relationships or power – are marginalized?

2196. Vision and retreat

People are not liking what they see. How do we direct our efforts without a vision? A coherent vision must go beyond  the  “re” words of re-construction, re-novation, re-storation, all of which are conserving views,  like “sustainability”, and not sufficient to get us through and onward. The earth obviously cannot take on an affluent life of consumption for all. More fundamental changes are necessary. But so far we are fighting ourselves.  Just as it is clear we need fundamental change to avoid interdependent catastrophes, many are working to reinforce their current activity in order to remain viable a little bit longer. But this  gets in the way of change. Moreover many are making plans for what they see as a post crisis opportunity to rebuild what was lost, but this too gets in the way and delays, potentially lethal, the possibility of encouraging changes.

2195. Migrations, land ownership, and economics

Is there a role for econimics and or economists in the following? I met this morning with (zoom) 16 people each from a different institution dealing with the problem of migrations, migrants, and the hostility on the rise from the people in the placse the migrations are moving to or though. There are efforts afloat for example to create the category of world citizen with passports and implyimg dignity (at one point migrants from the ME on average had more yewars of education that the average US citizen)

How do we cope with migrations – which means people on the move – and private property – which means people taking a stand where they are?  Migrating is one of the main ways, maybe the only way, but maybe including irrigation, populations, plants and animals including humans cope with climate change or other major environmental events. Get up and go and look for a livable place usually based on reports of better conditions.. I am sure we have all seen maps of the migrations that started with humans coming out of Africa and slowly moving to all parts of earth. Humans were good at this, and probabaly evolved mentalcapacities under pressure to cope.

If current practice (private property)denies this main way of coping what is the result? Even the way a commons (community owned land) would respond to migrant flows is understood to lead to violence. These migrations require production and distribution – issues common to economics. But there was no economist nor banker in the group, which were people mostly from non-profits and some government agencies.. 

Private propety is key. The words come from the Roman concept of  privatus – removing from the public, – and property – from proper – are you dressed properly for the party? – where the things are signs of one’s social position in the community (Tesla, BMW, Good burgundy and designer jeans). In all old societies wearing clothing from a different social rank was met by punishment, even death. Thngs were properly social signs.  Not marketable.

It gets confusing when we realize that democracy has its origin in land – community ownership as in the Greek city state, or as in requirement to vote as in democracies until recently. 

It looks to many that the current land ownership system is about to break apart. It did in England and France when church lands and large estates were taken back into the public realm. 40 million Americas face foreclosure? Food banks going broke?

Simply put, where I live in Sonoma County, experiments in how to grow food and live are impossible because all the land is held by those who want to keep it or sell it. Role for economists?

2194. The current situation.

We are at that edge where denial turns into giving up without an intermediate stage of trying our best to make sense and to make progress. Social unrest and the collapse of governance worldwide are spreading fast and we need a view of where we could go, a goal that is plausible even in the face of the anarchy of events. We are now, hopefully, approaching the down ramp from COVID but certainly we are already on the up ramp for climate change. Leadership is absent. We have no strategy for COVID and no strategy for climate change. Policy proposals, yes, but not courses of action. Policies aren’t proposing what governments should do.  

The mess we are in is shown by this graph. The key new fact is that 1.5 degrees is already catastrophic in a number of places on the earth. The graph suggests that as of now, all is doomed. However, just as now some places are already unlivable. Some places, now and out to the limit of the graph in 2100 will remain liveable. For those places, renewing civilization depends on Gardenworld as the guide for the immediate future.

Past and future carbon emissions

From Greenhouse-gas-emission-scenarios-01-1536×1059.png

People are not liking what they see. How do we direct our efforts without a vision? A coherent vision must go beyond  the  “re” words of re-construction, re-novation, re-storation, all of which are conserving views,  like “sustainability”, and not sufficient to get us through and onward. The earth obviously cannot take on an affluent life of consumption for all. More fundamental changes are necessary.