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Separating Gloom from Doom: A Post-Carbon Existentialism

This can be scary.   But even while considering the direst aspects of a world of increasing constraints and contractions, I don’t find the future to be the source of gloom. 

Apres Moi le Deluge

 “The American way of life,” George H.W. Bush infamously declared in 1992, “is not-negotiable.”  This presents a problem if the American way of life is also unsustainable. 

The Future of an Illusion

The prodigious use of energy and production of waste forms the most fundamental conditions of possibility for the American way of life.   All that we know and expect, value and demand, are not possible without all this consumption and this waste.

Agency on Demand? Holmgren, Hopkins, and the Historical Problem of Agency

All these questions are questions of agency: to what extent, if any, can humans be purposeful agents of historical change.  This question, I will suggest, has up to now been given something like a free pass in much post-carbon discourse, for reasons that I will explain in depth later.  

The Mis-Taking of America

This is where the notion of the infinite or the limitless scale of the Americas comes in, a notion that appears repeatedly throughout Jefferson’s work...when in doubt, expand and grow.

How I Became an Ex-Liberal

The issue of our collective state of denial had been bothering me for a year or two by the time Michael Moore showed up in Madison.

Notes From a Born-Again Soil Worshiper

In modernity, we value progress and individualism, which are part of a constellation of values that also includes mobility, acquisition, and change. We are suspicious of social ties that may bind...

Unsustainability Now!

What will happen when an unsustainable system attempts to keep running as if the resources necessary for its continuation still existed?

Liberal Expectations

I am currently working on a book-length manuscript with a provisional title of Liberal Expectations. In it I argue that the liberal world-view, and especially the expectations of most liberals, prevent them (us) from grasping the reality and consequences of global warming, peak oil, and other resource depletion and environmental problems,

Economics: pre- and post- Copernican

Asking an economist to evaluate the work of Nicole Foss is a bit like asking a Baptist Minister to evaluate the work of a secular, agnostic theologian or philosopher of religion, for we are dealing with two competing belief systems and Foss (along with Richard Heinberg, John Michael Greer, Juliet Schor, Wendell Berry, and to some extent Bill McKibben, along with countless others) is, among …
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