Debating Capitalism as if it exists

In my earlier post I said that my hobby of analysing capitalism from a sustainable point of view has got me to the point where I see that capitalism is actually a grammar describing the language of money. I said that there is an intellectual class paid to talk about these issues but, like linguists who have spoken a Read more about Debating Capitalism as if it exists[…]

CAPITALISM HAS FAILED. Remind me; what is it exactly?

In the excellent blog, CAPITALISM HAS FAILED, on Bill Totten’s site,  Sara Robinson, MS, APF points out the shortcomings of what she calls “the model”: The problem, in a nutshell, is this: The old economic model has utterly failed us. It has destroyed our communities, our democracy, our economic security, and the planet we live on. Read more about CAPITALISM HAS FAILED. Remind me; what is it exactly?[…]

Putting a price on emissions using ecological maturity impact

The price mechanism does not provide perfect information and does not necessarily lead to a perfectly efficient distribution of resources.  Many argue that the low cost of externalizing pollution to the community is leading us to create a fossil-dependent infrastructure that will be obsolete before it has paid for itself. This briefing from the Swedish Sustainable economy Read more about Putting a price on emissions using ecological maturity impact[…]

Emission fees simulations

Increasing emissions from industrial activity threaten climate stability and to upset eco-systems to a degree that not only puts continued industrial activity at risk, but also the very conditions for a reasonable life for citizens in both the industrialized and industrializing worlds. These emissions are seen by many as a failure of market forces, which Read more about Emission fees simulations[…]

New course in sustainable living 27 – 30 Sep.

People seek a sense of connectedness to nature. Many want to live in a way that is light on the earth and does not require huge amounts of debt and energy to function.  They want to invest in a way of life that they can believe in, economically and morally.  Since the 1980’s, systems ecologist Read more about New course in sustainable living 27 – 30 Sep.[…]

Sweden’s plans for energy intensity transition look shaky

I promised in my last blog in the series capitalism: a hobby to delve into the status of Sweden using my ideas of capital value. Before I do that, however I need to give readers an idea of the over-riding plans that Sweden has for energy intensity reduction. We saw from previous analyses that oil Read more about Sweden’s plans for energy intensity transition look shaky[…]

Economic growth in the sustainable community: can we or can’t we?

In this next foray into capitalism I want to explore the question of growth. Note that I still have not defined what capitalism is. Instead, I have taken the idea of capital and explored how the concept of capital  works together with sustainability and resilience.

This time I want to consider economic growth.We hear different ideas: economic growth can continue indefinitely as it is just a mirror of human genius and innovativeness. On the other hand, some say economic cannot continue on a finite planet.

Let us look first, then at how nature grows and see if we can find some insights into how capital can grow, and what economic growth would look like through the eyes of sustainability.

Growth = ecological maturity increase

Ecologists describe how all eco-systems strive to become mature.  You probably have the idea somewhere in the back of your mind, how smaller animals give way to large predators, small plants become forests, rushing water becomes a swamp, etc.


The secret to turning capital into something sustainable and useful

This is interesting. I started out to make capitalism my hobby and have got stuck posting about what capital is. My revelation from the last post was if you add up all the debt in the world, and then you add up all the money people possess in the world you get – zero. This is Read more about The secret to turning capital into something sustainable and useful[…]

If Mother Nature does most of the work, why is she not paid?

Still on the subject of a sustainability-interested layman’s hobby of delving into Capitalism, and before I define Capitalism, I would like to stay on the subject of what Capital is, or rather not what it is worth but how it is used. DEFINING NATURAL CAPITAL Natural Capital is easy to define in terms of ecological Read more about If Mother Nature does most of the work, why is she not paid?[…]

How can the world owe more than the total value of its assets?

Last time I went through the different types of capital and the two types of financial capital: own capital, called equity, for example the money put in by owners as shares, and foreign capital, money  the organization has borrowed.

Before I get any further on my understanding of Capitalism, I need to take one more step with understanding financial capital. Bear with me as I find this bit rather spooky.When companies (or even countries as we saw in the last post) draw up a balance sheet they put the money they have borrowed in as a liability, and accountants put a minus sign in front of that number.When a lender lends the money to, say, a company, the accountant put a plus sign in front of that figure to show that it represents and asset. For a bank to lend the money it does not need to actually have the money in its own account. It merely has to have a licence to lend money.