April 17, 2014
"The concepts of “solidarity economy”, “plural economy” and “human economy” overlap considerably and find common inspiration in Polanyi’s work, possibly more than any other single author. This undoubtedly accounts for his current popularity at a time when many people around the world are seeking to move beyond the sterile contrast between “revolutionary” and “reformist” approaches to improving the economy."

Keith Hart at The Memory Bank. The limits of Karl Polanyi’s anti-market approach in the struggle for economic democracy

Hart’s site has a search box, and it’s worth putting “Polanyi” in it to find some more of Hart’s insights about Polyanyi.

April 17, 2014
"Yet Marx, for all of his stubbornly apt insights about capitalism, is an unreliable guide to its remediation. Polanyi, with the benefit of nearly a century’s worth more evidence, has a surer sense of how markets interact with society. More humanist than materialist, Polanyi did not believe in iron laws. His hope was that democratic leaders might learn from history and not repeat the calamitous mistakes of the 19th and early 20th centuries."

Robert Kuttner at The American Prospect. Karl Polanyi Explains It All

Want to understand our market-crazed era? Rediscover the 20th century’s most prophetic critic of capitalism.

Via 3Quarks Daily

April 5, 2014
"[H]umanity would be wise to mitigate climate change as quickly as possible without being constrained by existing economic systems and institutions, or risk making the world uninhabitable."

 Rich Rosen and Edeltraud Guenther quoted by Alex Kirby at Climate News Network‘Forget the cost – tackle climate anyway’

Technological Forecasting and Social Change

March 19, 2014
"There’s a lesson to be learned for future crop traits, Shields said. Rootworm resistance was expected from the outset, but the Bt seed industry, seeking to maximize short-term profits, ignored outside scientists. The next pest-fighting trait “will fall under the same pressure,” said Shields, “and the insect will win. Always bet on the insect if there is not a smart deployment of the trait."

Elson Sheilds in an article by Brandon Keim at Wired. Voracious Worm Evolves to Eat Biotech Corn Engineered to Kill It

March 17, 2014
"If we are to reclaim the public good that is the monetary system; if we are to once again subordinate the small elite that makes up the finance sector to the interests of society and the economy as a whole, there must be democratic and accountable oversight of the system. We know it can be done, because in our recent history, after the 1929 financial crash, society succeeded in wrenching control of the monetary system back from a reckless and greedy wealthy elite. Last time depression and world war created the conditions for reform. This time a greater public understanding of money is required. It is perhaps the only thing that will head off depression and world war."

Ann Pettifor at Prime Economics. Just Money, introduction

The Just Money series on openDemocracy and the PRIME website concludes today with an exclusive extract from Ann Pettifor’s e-book of the same name.

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March 5, 2014
"There is not a free market solution to a peaceful decline."

Avner Offer quoted by Chris Hedges at Common Dreams. Suffering? Well, You Deserve It

March 4, 2014
"A good system of property rights establishes clear borders. Clear borders reduce disputes, encourage investment and promote efficient trade. Software patents, however, often fail to define clear borders."

Alex Tabarrok at Marginal RevolutionSoftware Patents are Not Good Property Rights

February 19, 2014
"Nobody expected that finance capitalism would dominate and ultimately stifle industrial capitalism. But that’s what’s happening.
All the futurists, even socialists, were optimists about capitalism. They thought it was going to evolve naturally into socialism, with an increasing government role in the economy to provide infrastructure, including banking. Instead, you have governments being carved up. That’s what neoliberalism is. It’s really neofeudalism. It’s a dismantling of democracy in favor of a financial oligarchy, to rule by appointing proconsuls and technocrats such as you have in Italy under Monti or in Greece under Papademos. You have a rolling back of history, and of the Enlightenment. If your college curriculum, your religion and the popular press doesn’t even talk about the enlightenment and about the history of economic thought, you’re not going to realize that what’s happening is a rolling back of the last 500 years."

Michael Hudson speaking with Greg McInerney of The Melting Press. Monopoly’s Poster Children

Via Ukiah Blog

January 20, 2014

Responding to a post from a black man about prejudice at Musings by Samsaran.

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November 30, 2013
"If you happen to be mostly depressed about the state of your life, I don’t know whether you feel like doing impulse control. If you are like me and you see that you have a bunch of ambitions that you actually think you have a reasonable chance of realising in life, you may be very different in terms of your willingness to give up the almond croissant. But if I feel that everything I’ve hoped for never worked, then what am I restraining myself for? That’s a completely legitimate way to think. And I think that it may well be that a substantial part of the reason why the poor look as if they’re taking worse decisions is because they don’t care enough, and they don’t care enough because they really, probably rightly, see that their chances of getting somewhere very different are minimal. If you’re never going to climb up that hill towards attainment, then you might as well not try. There’s no point pushing the rock up the hill and having it roll down on you."

Abhijit Banerjee quoted in an article by Decca Aitkenhead in The Guardian

Abhijit Banerjee: ‘The poor, probably rightly, see that their chances of getting somewhere different are minimal’

The author of Poor Economics on why aid that assumes the poor will do the right thing is misguided – and why political corruption does not necessarily mean economic stagnation

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