Monday 21st July, 2008
Today sees the publication of a report – The Green New Deal – that I co-authored. Much of the analysis in these pages is reflected in the report.
The Green New Deal highlights the fact that ‘easy money’ led to excessive consumption, which in turn led to the uprooting of forests and the burning of emissions to satisfy demands for goods and services. By easing up on excessive credit, and regulating finance we may also give the ecosystem a chance to renew itself, and to recover from this latest period of rapacious consumption.
Published by the new economics foundation (nef) it highlights the similarities between today’s Credit Crunch and the Great Depression of the 1920s. The report draws on lessons learned in the 1930s about the risks of excessively de-regulated finance in causing major recessions, and calls for the kind of intellectual and political leadership shown by Roosevelt and Keynes, and so lacking today. The contempt in which these two great figures are held by most orthodox economists and neoliberal politicians is, in my view, but a reflection of their own analytical failure. It is this analytical failure that explains why central bankers, economists and finance ministers have failed to adequately predict and handle the Credit Crunch .
The report proposes that every home should become a power station, and that a carbon army of workers is needed to build renewable energy systems and help transform our economy towards sustainability….. So within the Green New Deal lie the seeds of hope and the possibility of a future. Indulge.
Also see coverage in the Guardian, Green New Deal group calls for break-up of banks, David Teather, Monday 21st July.