Archive for Commentary

Inequality, Epidemiology and Economics

May 05, 2016 No Comments by
In chapter 13 of his book Credo, Brian Davey points out that public health is an alternative indicator of well-being and is strongly correlated to levels of equality or inequality. Greater equality means greater well-being for everyone and a smaller need for the state – yet inequality has been increasing dramatically.
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Unconventional gas field development and optimism bias: submission by Brian Davey to the UK Environment Agency

Mar 29, 2016 No Comments by
In this submission made in response to a drilling application by iGas, Brian Davey argues that the judgements made on behalf of IGas are flawed by what occupational psychologists and management theorists call “optimism bias”.
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Shale Euphoria: The Boom and Bust of Sub Prime Oil and Natural Gas

Mar 23, 2016 No Comments by
In this update to his book Credo, Brian Davey argues that the shale industry, whether extracting oil or gas, has never been financially sustainable. How could this be? It seems paradoxical and defies ordinary economic logic.
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Cheap Food Costs Dear: review of the Compassion in World Farming report by Martin Peck

Mar 19, 2016 No Comments by
Martin Peck comments that "anything I write could not do justice to this report. I can only urge everyone to read it and to try to ensure that policy makers are made aware of it." It draws attention to interrelated aspects of the many externalities of agriculture and the food system, including soil erosion and greenhouse gas emissions.
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Privatising Air

Feb 26, 2016 Comments Off on Privatising Air by
We seem to have entered an era of 'reductio ad absurdum' capitalism. Many of life's fundamentals such as land, water and energy have been or are being enclosed and privatised. @GrahamJBarnes asks if there is any natural limit to this. Could air be privatised?
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The psycho-dynamics of the financial market

Feb 19, 2016 Comments Off on The psycho-dynamics of the financial market by
"When we look at the financial markets from an emotional and mental health angle, we don’t find optimal equilibrium states and rational people adapting to them. Instead, we come across a large number of unhappy, dysfunctional and disorientated people," writes Brian Davey in an excerpt from his book Credo.
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The climate and the commons

Feb 08, 2016 Comments Off on The climate and the commons by
Over the course of several decades Elinor Ostrom and her colleagues carried out extensive research on effectively managed commons around the world, and drew up a set of guidelines that could be applied to the atmosphere as well. This article by Caroline Whyte is the second of a series discussing precedents for CapGlobalCarbon.
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A Financial Transaction Tax (FTT) for Ireland

Jan 27, 2016 Comments Off on A Financial Transaction Tax (FTT) for Ireland
If implementation of an FTT is indeed a no-brainer, as suggested at yesterday's launch in Dublin of RobinHoodTax.ie, it is because of its potential influence in creating a more stable and balanced economy within a fairer society. These may not be the lead messages of a campaign featuring the #MakeBankersPay hashtag and emphasising the dogoodability of FTT tax receipts. But arguably they should be. By Graham Barnes.
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Putting moral philosophy back into economics

Jan 22, 2016 2 Comments
"The first step to putting ethics back into economics is to take centuries of PR spin out of it and describe the world as it is, not the comfortable ideas that we would prefer to believe." This article by Brian Davey can be read to get a summary overview of many of the ethical themes in Credo.
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The forks in the road after the Paris agreement, by Mike Sandler

Dec 20, 2015 Comments Off on The forks in the road after the Paris agreement, by Mike Sandler
"The only thing missing from the Agreement is who, what, and how," writes Mike Sandler. "Like a zen koan, the Agreement is a riddle that just leads to more questions."
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Not a fair COP…a report from Paris by Robert Hutchison

Dec 15, 2015 Comments Off on Not a fair COP…a report from Paris by Robert Hutchison
"The climate change threat will only be fully met – and the opportunity for greater human wellbeing only fully realised - when the collective courage of humanity forces governments to face up to their responsibilities. Climate change remains everyone’s issue; we need to tread more lightly, more softly, while listening and responding to the most vulnerable."
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The Paris agreement: a Christmas truce, or a new beginning?

Dec 15, 2015 Comments Off on The Paris agreement: a Christmas truce, or a new beginning?
During the Christmas Truce of 1914, German, English and French ground troops temporarily stopped fighting and instead exchanged greetings and gifts, and sang Christmas carols together. There was a certain amount of musing about the absurdity of the war. And yet they went right back to fighting afterwards. How can we prevent a similar dynamic from happening after COP-21?
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Commoning

Dec 10, 2015 Comments Off on Commoning
In a second excerpt from his book Credo, Brian Davey explores the features of sustainable commons and the extent of commons today. He describes the practice of commoning as a possible response to the ecological crisis - a topic of much relevance to the current COP21 negotiations on climate.
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