Over the past two decades two opposing points of view about likely futures have hogged the media debates as if there were only two alternatives. Reality has proved to be very different.
The ‘End of Growth’ camp has portrayed a sad world in which no one has any meaningful future unless we change our environmental attitudes, energy needs, lifestyle and workstyle. Capitalism and democracy themselves need a complete overhaul.
The ‘Abundance’ camp has championed the ‘by embracing technology we can do anything’ approach as a way to solve environmental, social and economic issues. If only politicians could understand the science of it all, then free-market capitalism would do the rest.
As usual… reality has won out over both extremes!
While the debate still rages, both scenarios have in fact been realized, with varying degrees of success as the years have moved on. In the past two decades we have achieved both slow growth and fast growth, at the same time and from time to time. It’s no longer an either-or world.
We live in a world of constant and increasing choice, at a personal, community and national level. We should now realize that reality is always messy. We live in a world of inescapable duality. Access to resources is universal. Attitudes are not. There are no longer the ‘have-nots’, just the ‘want-nots’!
Every one of the millions of new businesses that have been created by ‘previously disadvantaged’ entrepreneurs will attest to that.
If you don’t believe that you have choice, then you are already lost. The one thing we can all hope for is some kind of responsible global government – or could that be the final disaster?