We face systemic problems — economic, political, social, and environmental ones all wound up together. Effective solutions are emerging in all of these domains, but we lack a reliable systemic perspective to weave them together. I believe Energy Network Science (ENS) can provide the sound, systemic framework we need to address our systemic problems. ENS’s study of the energy laws of growth and development can help restore our economies and our souls by: (1) Helping us rediscover the truth and power of free-enterprise democracy; (2) Giving us the tools and concepts we need to build healthy Democratic Free Enterprise Networks (DFENs), the kind that have always formed the sinews of American vitality; (3) Providing precise quantitative measures and targets for healthy development that seem quite unimaginable in the current milieu. This is the story of how these gifts change our view of how to rebuild economic vitality and restore the dream.
KEYWORDS: Balancing resilience & efficiency, energy network analysis, free enterprise democracy, quantitative measures of economic health, regenerative economics.
Discussion between authors of a revolutionary new article. Read More
“There are four cornerstones that we really must work on to shift from domination to partnership: childhood, gender, economics — going past capitalist and socialist theory to a caring economics of partnerism — and different stories and language.”
— DR. RIANE EISLER
Why are the major social binaries inadequate in explaining the basis of our varied injustices? What is needed to translate our relational shifts from domination to partnerism into structural shifts in our societal configuration?
In this episode, we welcome Dr. Riane Eisler, a systems scientist, futurist, attorney, and macro-historian whose research, writing, and speaking have transformed the lives of people worldwide. She is president of the Center for Partnership Systems (CPS), Editor-in-Chief of the Interdisciplinary Journal of Partnership Studies at the University of Minnesota, and author of Nurturing Our Humanity: How Domination and Partnership Shape Our Brains, Lives, and Future (co-authored with anthropologist Douglas Fry), showing how the social and biological sciences, especially neuroscience, support the findings from her research. Her other books include The Chalice and The Blade: Our History, Our Future, Sacred Pleasure, and The Real Wealth of Nations: Creating a Caring Economics, hailed by Nobel Peace.
Is a new economic model toppling capitalism? Yanis Varoufakis, the former Greek Minister for Finance and current leader of the MeRA25 Party, discusses the future of capitalism, his theories of technofeudalism and cloud capital, and the invasion of Ukraine. This event was hosted on April 4, 2022 by Stanford in Government member Ryan Cieslikowski. Stanford in Government (SIG) is Stanford’s preeminent organization for students dedicated to public service and civic engagement. To learn more about SIG, follow us on Instagram (@stanfordingov), Facebook (Stanford in Government), and Twitter (@stanfordingov). You can also visit our website: sig.stanford.edu. Read More
1. “LAUDATO SI’, mi’ Signore” – “Praise be to you, my Lord”. In the words of this beautiful canticle, Saint Francis of Assisi reminds us that our common home is like a sister with whom we share our life and a beautiful mother who opens her arms to embrace us. “Praise be to you, my Lord, through our Sister, Mother Earth, who sustains and governs us, and who produces various fruit with coloured flowers and herbs”.
2. This sister now cries out to us because of the harm we have inflicted on her by our irresponsible use and abuse of the goods with which God has endowed her. We have come to see ourselves as her lords and masters, entitled to plunder her at will. The violence present in our hearts, wounded by sin, is also reflected in the symptoms of sickness evident in the soil, in the water, in the air and in all forms of life. This is why the earth herself, burdened and laid waste, is among the most abandoned and maltreated of our poor; she “groans in travail” (Rom 8:22). We have forgotten that we ourselves are dust of the earth (cf. Gen 2:7); our very bodies are made up of her elements, we breathe her air and we receive life and refreshment from her waters.
In an historic final interview, filmmaker and music promoter Aaron Russo goes in depth on the insider-knowledge given to him by a member of the Rockefeller family. Russo was told (prior to 9/11) of plans to stage terror attacks, invade foreign nations, and kickstart a high-tech police state control grid that would track the populations’ every move with implantable R.F.I.D. microchips.
To many in politics and business, the triumph of the self is the ultimate expression of democracy, where power has finally moved to the people. Certainly, the people may feel they are in charge, but are they really? The Century of the Self tells the untold and sometimes controversial story of the growth of the mass-consumer society. How was the all-consuming self created, by whom, and in whose interests?
McMurtry’s work offers a contribution to the understanding, as well as to development of standards for the measurement, of human well-being, so that progress and regress may be interpreted in ways that mainstream economic criteria neglect or fail to ascertain, both in theory and in practice. The importance of determining novel standards and indicators is considerable, and widely acknowledged by many academics and politicians (for example, the 2008–2009 Stiglitz-Sen-Fitoussi Commission created by the French Government), but above all it is important to reconceptualise economic phenomena so as to re-orient them in line with life-based criteria.
First, it has already been highlighted that the type of ‘growth’ conceptualised and pursued in today’s global market has had systemic negative effects upon life at many levels, to the point of making possible the explanation of said implications by means of a cancer-based explanatory model. ‘Real capital’ as ‘life capital’ is both unseen and harmed by standard economic thought (CSC2013, p. 12).
Second, in the wake of the current economic crisis, the same global market has been proven equally unable to attain ‘growth’ on its own life-blind terms, that is, in terms of pecuniary aggrandisement for money investors and/or managers (cf. Crotty, 2000). ‘Real capital’ as sheer ‘money’ is not there either, especially if one considers that the vast meltdowns of the last few decades have been caused by speculative bubbles in exponentially ‘leveraged’ masses of currency without any ‘grounding’ in ‘a medium of exchange and capital’ such as ‘gold, labour, or livestock’ (CSC2013, p. 12).
The system’s inherent rationality, which economics textbooks presuppose, is to be seriously questioned, and that is what McMurtry’s work does, consistent with Castoriadis’ (2005a, p. 129) poignant characterisation of the Socratic role that philosophers are expected to play in genuinely democratic societies: the possibility and the ability to call established institutions and significations into question. Whether he will be listened to, we do not know. However, responding to a cancer diagnosis by avoiding what alone can work is fatal.
John McMurtry shows that a false economic paradigm holds the world in thrall to a global corporate death system masked as market freedom. Liberation is explained as grounded in humanity’s repressed life-value code, life capital bases and civil commons organization which unify across distances and differences.