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from your words I assume that you do not agree that scaling down is needed, neither morally nor environmentally...

That is not what Colman said.

What he said is that the politics of the left need to survive in the current media environment and need to satisfy the expectations of the politicians about their own personal position.

Which makes "degrowth" a hard sell to the public and a hard bullet to bite for the politicians who would push it.

Which has nothing to do with the necessity or morality of scaling down, just with its political expediency.

Economics is politics by other means

by Migeru (migeru at eurotrib dot com) on Wed May 11th, 2011 at 10:13:21 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Ok, then let me rephrase that: I do not see "the left" in general defending degrowth. Unions here protect teachers that make 3000-5000 Euros (The salary of a Uni teacher can go up to 5000, maybe less now with 10% cuts).

I never saw a union here suggesting: "OK, if we cannot get more salary mass, then cut individual salaries, but employ the unemployed".

The degrowth, pain sharing approach simply does not exist.

It is moral very similar to what the right proposes. It is just a question of which group gets more money.

I have to dash now, but later I would also like to comment on the "media thing".

by cagatacos on Wed May 11th, 2011 at 10:21:38 AM EST
[ Parent ]
I never saw a union here suggesting: "OK, if we cannot get more salary mass, then cut individual salaries, but employ the unemployed".

The unemployment persists under leftist governments because they accept a neolibierlad dogma about the necessity of unemployment. For a state, there is no lack of fiat money, nor can there be a lack fiat money other then by political rules. So there is no need to either lower salaries in order to be able to employ.

If the recently hired does not delivered goods and services in proportion to what they are awarded by their new salary you get some inflation. But compared to the resource scarcity inflation it should be small change.

Sweden's finest (and perhaps only) collaborative, leftist e-newspaper Synapze.se

by A swedish kind of death on Thu May 12th, 2011 at 03:06:07 AM EST
[ Parent ]
The thing is that hourly wage has to keep pace with hourly productivity. Otherwise, you get into bubble territory.

So the only way you can reduce total wages if productivity is increasing is to reduce hours worked. And since productivity increases mainly due to capital accumulation and gains from scale, this will tend to reduce productivity gains, and thus reduce the gain in free time compared to the possible gain in goods produced. And raw material shortages happen to "someone else." Usually - not always, but usually - someone who has no name and has no face and lives in some far-off place.

Is it possible? Yes. But politically very difficult.

And we have low-hanging fruit from efficiency gains that we can harvest before we need to make genuinely difficult decisions.

- Jake

Friends come and go. Enemies accumulate.

by JakeS (JangoSierra 'at' gmail 'dot' com) on Tue May 17th, 2011 at 04:59:11 PM EST
[ Parent ]


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