Herman Daly: This Pioneering Economist Says Our Obsession With Growth Must End – The New York Times

“Growth is the be-all and end-all of mainstream economic and political thinking. Without a continually rising G.D.P., we’re told, we risk social instability, declining standards of living and pretty much any hope of progress. But what about the counterintuitive possibility that our current pursuit of growth, rabid as it is and causing such great ecological harm, might be incurring more costs than gains? That possibility — that prioritizing growth is ultimately a losing game — is one that the lauded economist Herman Daly has been exploring for more than 50 years. In so doing, he has developed arguments in favor of a steady-state economy, one that forgoes the insatiable and environmentally destructive hunger for growth, recognizes the physical limitations of our planet and instead seeks a sustainable economic and ecological equilibrium. “Growth is an idol of our present system,” says Daly, emeritus professor at the University of Maryland School of Public Policy, a former senior economist for the World Bank and, along with the likes of Greta Thunberg and Edward Snowden, a recipient of the prestigious Right Livelihood Award (often called the “alternative Nobel”). “Every politician is in favor of growth,” Daly, who is 84, continues, “and no one speaks against growth or in favor of steady state or leveling off. But I think it’s an elementary question to ask: Does growth ever become uneconomic?”

David Lindsay Jr.
Hamden, CT | NYTimes Comment:
Great interview of Herman Daly by David Marchese. I would like to nominate Herman Daly for the two Nobel prizes, the Nobel prize in economics, and the peace prize. When I attended the University of Washington Foster School of Business for an MBA in 1990, I was disturbed that all the economists I studied under assumed that growth was the only way to improve life on the planet. The world has to wake up, and admit that unrestricted population growth and consumerism and all the pollution created by these trends, is completely unsustainable for life as we have known it. We desperately need more ecological and steady-state economists. Which brings me back to my two Nobel prize nominations.
David blogs at InconvenientNews.net