Imagine an egalitarian world in which all food is organic and local, the air is free of industrial pollution, and vigorous physical exertion is guaranteed. Sound idyllic?
But hold on… Life expectancy is 30 at most; many children die at or soon after birth; life is constantly lived on the edge of starvation; there are no doctors or dentists or modern toilets. If it is egalitarian it is because everyone is dirt poor, and there is no industrial pollution because there are no factories. Food is organic because there are no pesticides or high technology farming methods. As a result, producing food means long hours of back-breaking physical work which may end up yielding little.
There is—or at least was—such a place. It is called the past.
Thus begins an excellent review essay by Daniel Ben-Ami in Spiked of books by green writer Bill McKibben, economist Robert Frank, journalist Robert Frank (yes, very confusing), and reason Contributing Editor Brink Lindsey.
Ben-Ami makes a strong defense of economic growth and a "post-scarcity society."
Via Arts & Letters Daily.
Read Lindsey's July reason cover story about "The Aquarians and the Evangelicals: How left-wing hippies and right-wing fundamentalists created a libertarian America."