Fantasies of “Socialism with an iPad”?: Inventing the Future by Nick Srnicek and Alex Williams: Review

Aug 14, 2016 Comments Off on Fantasies of “Socialism with an iPad”?: Inventing the Future by Nick Srnicek and Alex Williams: Review
"Sometimes you read a book that helps to crystalize your thinking, not because you agree with it, but because you don't" writes Brian Davey, who goes on to challenge the authors' assumptions about the availability of renewable energy and the nature and potential of localism.
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The centrality of externalities to economic thinking

Jul 31, 2016 Comments Off on The centrality of externalities to economic thinking
Brian Davey argues in Credo that what economists call “externalities” are not unusual or a special case, they are ubiquitous. They are rooted in private property and the relationships of market society. The way in which non market societies protect bio-diversity through totem arrangements is described.
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The “regulation” of unconventional gas

Jul 22, 2016 Comments Off on The “regulation” of unconventional gas
This presentation by Brian Davey, made in July 2016 on behalf of Frack Free Notts, outlines the problems with the regulatory structure for unconventional gasfield development in the UK. It discusses the problem of “regulatory capture” by the industry, deceptive PR, the selective recognition of ‘experts’ and siloing of different aspects of safety (such as the environment and health).
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Designing an Intentional Currency

Jul 13, 2016 Comments Off on Designing an Intentional Currency
An epistle from an imaginary adviser to an imaginary startup currency. Time to get off the proverbial fence. With a health warning. By Graham Barnes.
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Economics in Darwinist mode – the competitive struggle for existence

Jun 30, 2016 Comments Off on Economics in Darwinist mode – the competitive struggle for existence
Improved competitiveness is a major goal of virtually every nation and trading bloc in the world. Both sides in the Brexit debate claimed that Britain would become more competitive if they prevailed. But where does this glorification of competition come from? Does it reflect fundamentals of human nature, or does it stem from a quasi-religious dogma that goes largely unquestioned? Brian Davey explores the roots of the obsession with competitiveness, and its knock-on effects, in a chapter of his book Credo.
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Jim Ratcliffe, Ineos and the empire of trash

Jun 11, 2016 3 Comments
Brian Davey explores the decision of Ineos, one of the world's largest chemical companies, to promote fracking. The Ineos majority shareholder, Jim Ratcliffe, claims fracking could regenerate northern Britain despite evidence that the strategy is "a mirage that would lead to a mountain of debt and a mountain of garbage".
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Tackling climate, poverty and inequality together: managing the share in CapGlobalCarbon on a global level

Jun 05, 2016 Comments Off on Tackling climate, poverty and inequality together: managing the share in CapGlobalCarbon on a global level
Caroline Whyte draws on development theory, recent technological developments and research on inequality to argue that the share in CapGlobalCarbon could and should be distributed to individuals globally. The impact on poverty and inequality worldwide could be massive.
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Consumerism, Collective Psychopathology, Waste

May 29, 2016 Comments Off on Consumerism, Collective Psychopathology, Waste
This chapter of Credo by Brian Davey discusses conspicuous consumption and the consumer society, branding and the manufacture of wants. The role of advertisers is explored as well as the way that attention grabbing has become an economic sector that affects the quality of life radically and for the worse.
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CapGlobalCarbon, Keep It In The Ground and the divestment campaign

May 20, 2016 Comments Off on CapGlobalCarbon, Keep It In The Ground and the divestment campaign
Caroline Whyte argues that while the Keep it in the Ground and divestment campaigns both have the potential to achieve significant progress on climate change, they need structural support in order to ensure that their actions actually have teeth. This support could be provided by CapGlobalCarbon.
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Labelling as a stepping stone to zero fossil fuels

May 14, 2016 Comments Off on Labelling as a stepping stone to zero fossil fuels
Caroline Whyte describes a possible way to ease the transition to 100% renewables: labelling of fuel that is produced by companies who have signed up to CapGlobalCarbon, undertaking to completely eliminate their fossil fuel production by 2050 at the latest.
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Inequality, epidemiology and economics

May 05, 2016 Comments Off on Inequality, epidemiology and economics
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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Closed loop agriculture for environmental enhancement: returning biomass nutrients from humanure and urine to agriculture

Apr 26, 2016 Comments Off on Closed loop agriculture for environmental enhancement: returning biomass nutrients from humanure and urine to agriculture
This report by Féidhlim Harty argues that closed-loop agriculture would not only stop the waste of nutrients to watercourses as pollution, it would also stop the high energy inputs needed for artificial nitrogen production, would enhance biodiversity, and could go a significant way towards reducing overall agricultural greenhouse gas emissions.
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The strange idea of negative interest

Apr 13, 2016 Comments Off on The strange idea of negative interest
This article by Graham Barnes addresses the role of demurrage (negative interest) in the design of new currencies. But it takes a roundabout route with diversions around the zero and negative interest rates being currently applied to fiat money; and a detour via positive interest which is itself a stranger idea than we have been led to believe. It suggests that demurrage is worth a place in the designer's kitbag, but not for the reason normally postulated.
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