Green Capitalism

Manufacturing scarcity in an age of abundance

James Heartfield, 2008

· Chapter 1, The Age of Plenty
· Chapter 4, abridged, Manufactured Scarcity (from Internet page at Mute)
· Chapter 8, part, Environmentalists in the “Dismal Science”

Chapter 1, The Age of Plenty

The global elite is in the grip of a terrible nightmare.

The nightmare is cornucopia. For the ruling classes nothing is more alarming than the steady rise in mass consumerism. Across the world they see the advance of consumer power as a drain on their precious resources. The age of plenty is an anathema to them. Superstores, cheap air travel, fat kids, suburban sprawl, and takeaway food fill them with dread. Their biggest fear is that the Chinese should take to driving cars. They dream instead of restoring strict limits on consumption. If scarcity is in danger of being overcome, their ambition is to artificially recreate it.

For thirty millennia mankind lived under the tyranny of scarcity. The struggle to survive dominated human experience. Perched on the edge of existence men were at the mercy of the elements. Droughts, famine, floods, and disease threatened extinction. We were slaves to the relentless cycles of night and day, high and low tide, summer and winter. The earth only gave up the means by which we survived, food, shelter, warmth, very grudgingly. Backbreaking toil has been the lot of the small farmer since men first settled the land.

Hardship stunted the moral and intellectual growth of men. Dominated by nature in fact, they were in thrall to phantoms in their imaginations. Superstitious in beliefs, custom bound in their social lives, ignorant intellectually – there was nothing virtuous about poverty.

Only by industry, by husbanding the soil, by honing the tools, by storing the grain, by re-routing the waters, gathering the wood, digging the coal, drilling the oil, smelting the iron and steel did men ever succeed in wresting more the earth than they needed. The surplus, over and above bare existence, is what makes us human.

But the surplus was for so long, small: little more than a grain store, a salted ham, a barrel of apples for the winter. More than nature needs was hard to come by.

Without enough to go around, all communal bonds, till now, have been little more than systems for rationing the surplus. Monasteries and castles, temples and parliaments, long-halls and pyramids - these are the monuments left by the great class wars over the surplus product that have raged for the last five thousand years. The prize to the victors: a life of plenty, amid squalor. Their civilisation was not much more than an armed stockade around the food store.

Freedom from necessity was so rare a commodity that it was concentrated in the hands of the privileged few. The leisured classes, whether aristocratic or priestly, warlord or capitalist have had to fight hard to defend their privileges. Subjugation of the toiling masses was the condition of the freedom of the elite. Human civilisation, whether literary or scientific, has blossomed in the free time won by the few, on the backs of many. Scarcity made the human order into a bitter war over social product.

Throughout human history, the powers-that-be have stood on the solid authority of scarcity. Ever since Joseph took control of the Pharoah’s grain store, authority has meant rationing. Doling out the rations is the first function of all authority. Whether it was wages, or benefits, homes or health-care, the person in control of the rations has always been the one with the whip.

Capitalism was from the outset a system of rationing.
Capitalism rations scarce goods through the market mechanism. It disperses the weekly ration to families as wages. It recovers its costs by limiting access to goods. It reduces us to wage slaves by controlling access to the means of subsistence. Capitalism cannot exist without scarcity. Scarcity is capitalism’s means of social control

But capitalism is also the system that has over time abolished scarcity. As well as a system of social control, capitalism is a system for producing goods. To create an ever-greater surplus, capitalism has revolutionised technology, so reducing costs. The profit system drove people to create abundance. In doing so capitalism has abolished the basis for its own control.

Industrial revolution
The industrial revolution turned the world upside down. Putting a premium on cutting wage costs, capitalism set in motion the single greatest transformation in human history. At last, here was a system that rewarded the abbreviation of working time: the factory system. Begun in 1721 at the Lombe Silk Works on the Derwent, the factory system has expanded to embrace the world. Greedily swallowing up labour power, the factory had to be reined in by trade unions and the law.

The gains of the factory system are straightforward. As it grew, output grew faster than the number of people. Result: happiness. In Britain between 1801 and 1911 the population grew from 10.5 million to 41.8 million, an annual increase of 1.25 per cent, while output grew by 2-2.25 per cent a year.[1] In the last century, world population grew more than it did in the previous 30 000 years. Happily, world output increased faster, so that output per head grew nearly ten times, from $679 to $6539 between 1900 and 2000.[2] Only because output grew faster is it possible that those more than four billion new people survive.

The history of technology is a subject in itself (see appendix, The Revolution in Technique). To abbreviate: levers, pulleys and then machines substituted for routine human tool-use; mills and dray animals, and then later engines substituted for human motive power; wood, coal, oil and gas substituted for dietary calories providing warmth, light and then, with machines, kinetic energy.

To do the same thing over and again, said Heraclitus, is not just boredom, it is slavery. Technology, substituting for routine work can set us free. The division of labour made dull but efficient work out of mysterious craftsmanship. Once isolated, routine could be mechanised.

And because industry isolates the repetitive actions from the creative side of work, it is driven by standardisation. Modern technology levels, distilling the essence out in different circumstances.

It prefers purer energy sources like oil, and electricity because of their universality of application, to bulky and unpredictable wood, wind and coal.

Technology has tended to the development, not of the universal worker, the Robot, but to the universal machine, the computer, which substitutes more effectively for routines that lay far beyond the calculating capacities of people.

But for the elite cultural reaction against it, today’s era would be known as the Age of Plastics, the universal construction materials that have freed our goods from the constraints of natural forms (at least at the super-molecular level).

The future is here. We are largely free from the direct domination of nature. For most of us, absolute scarcity is a thing of the past - thanks to the revolution in technique.

The Worldwatch Institute estimated that 1.7 billion people earn enough to buy into the consumer society. It is true that only in West Europe and America, does the ‘consumer class’ approach to the whole population. But still 29 per cent of the consumer class, 494 million are in East Asia, a tenth in East Europe and another tenth in Latin America.[3]

In material terms there is no basis for scarcity today. Food output – despite the Reverend Malthus’ fears – outstripped population. Good news for most of us.

But for some, the end of scarcity is an outrage. They cannot believe that people can enjoy the good life. For them, the very sight of other people eating, drinking, enjoying themselves is disgusting. The puritan ethos was a great thing, when Britons were faced with real scarcity, but some people do not know how to let it go.

But the demand for rationing is not just a cultural reaction. Controlling access to the means of subsistence has been the way that society was organised since the dawn of human settlements.

Scarcity was never just scarcity. It was also a weapon in the struggle to establish mastery. The bread-and-water diet, doling out the ship’s biscuits, taxing peasants, land distribution, the ration-book, wage negotiations – these were the ways that the ruling class ruled.

The super-abundance generated by modern industry calls the authority of the powers-that-be into question.

Even modern capitalism - the system that developed industry – struggles to justify its profits in the face of super-abundance.

The natural tendency of prices is downwards, as productivity increases. More and more we see costs of reproduction pushed so low that they are getting close to negligible.

That is what happened to electronically reproduced music. Here were goods that you could take away, while leaving them there. The commodity-form of old coincided with finite goods, whose ownership implied they were denied to others.

Instantaneous reproduction at negligible cost threatens the very structure of private property relations. Increasingly, profits can only be generated through the artificial imposition of a legal title to payment for licensed use. Naturally enough, the dependence upon the law to enforce payments tempts teenagers to evade it.

You will not be able to download food from the internet in the foreseeable future, but here too, the same downward trend in costs is clear. UK households spent around one third of their income on food in 1950 and about one tenth today - thanks to the growth of factory farms that push down prices.

Government scientist Sir David King suggests that cheap and available food has helped make Britain overweight. Meanwhile Americans throw away one quarter of all their food uneaten, and the figure for Britain is a staggering 30-40 per cent[4] - modern consumers put little value on food. At the same time small farmers are leaving the industry, as returns shrink.

Modern industry is dissolving the artificial representation of output as discrete goods, with a price label, and laying bare its real character as a series of developing relationships.

The growing importance of intellectual property rights is a sign that the propertied elite is losing touch with the world of production. Western copyright lawyers are hunting China’s cities for an unearned share of their industry.

More and more capital is tied up in unproductive speculation. The financial wizards are increasingly preoccupied with securing future value streams independent of any kind of productive activity. Growth, whether in housing, companies or the fine art market, generally means asset inflation, without any corresponding increase in production. Indeed investors prefer goods whose supply is limited, rationed, like Britain’s over-regulated housing market, or unique goods like fine art.

Reinventing Scarcity in an age of abundance
‘Allow not nature more than nature needs, man’s life’s as cheap as beast’s’ Shakespeare, King Lear, Act II, Scene IV

In the face of real super-abundance, saving the rule of private property means reinventing scarcity. Artificially manufactured scarcity is the condition for the reimposition of capitalist authority.

The last nature-imposed famines were in India in the 1960s. The ‘green revolution’ that brought high-yield crops, fertilisers and motorisation put an end to India’s recurrent famines.

Since then, famines have been man-made. Starvation in Cambodia came through a combination of American bombardment and Khmer Rouge depopulation of the cities. The 1986 Ethiopian famine was a product of war. Localised famines in inland Somalia were transformed into a general collapse in output once American agricultural surpluses dumped in Mogadishu as USAID pushed grain prices to zero, so that farmers abandoned their plots and invaded the port.

Economist Rehman Sobhan explained why the single greatest aid recipient, Bangladesh, was so poor: aid agencies were so numerous that they recruited all the most talented Bengalis away from fruitful work.

Man-made famines re-establish a new ruling order. Michael Maren described the way that aid agencies came to rule over the East African villages he worked in. Aid workers, often young people with precious little experience, lorded it over their black subjects.[5]

In the developed world, too, the enemies of abundance are struggling to reinvent scarcity.

Over and again experts have warned us that the exhaustion of natural resources is at hand. In every case, these warnings have proved false.

In the 1970s, we were warned that oil reserves were running out. But as prices increased those reserves were discovered to be many times greater than previously thought. Today, again we are being told that ‘peak oil’ is in sight. But these remain theoretical assertions without any justification.

Then we were warned about deforestation. But it turned out that in the United States forestland is growing 5886 square kilometres on average every year. In the European Union forests are growing 486 million cubic metres every year.[6]

Herbert Girardet warned us that our human footprint - the area of land needed to generate the goods we consume - was getting bigger, and soon the cities would consume the countryside. Now we know that the actual human footprint covers fewer acres each year, as grain yields per acre increase. In the United States, the human footprint (developed + farm land) has shrunk by 15 per cent since 1950.[7]

Paul Erhlich thought that the increase in population meant that there would be a generalised materials and goods famine by the mid 1980s. In fact food production outstripped household demand, as raw materials did industrial demand.

Inventing scarcity today takes a big leap of the imagination. Struggling to demonstrate shortages in an age of abundance, the scare-mongers have left the mundane world altogether and discovered a shortage in the ether.

Of course climate change is an important scientific question, but that is quite a different thing from the contemporary cultural interpretation of climate change as a coming catastrophe. Whether a warmer planet would mean more goods or less is a moot point. What is certain is that those who need to believe in scarcity will discover it in climate change. Climate change scare mongering is the final etherialisation of scarcity.

What needs to be explained is not the natural limits to growth. What needs to be explained is the determination in some quarters to believe, despite the evidence to the contrary, that we have reached the natural limits to growth.

The green capitalists’ a priori belief in limits is independent of any empirical substantiation. It is the prejudice of an elite that can only exercise authority by controlling the rations. These are the prejudices that laid the basis for a new kind of capitalism - green capitalism. And the first stage in the genesis of green capitalism is the retreat from production.

Chapter 4, Manufactured Scarcity

The Profits of Deindustrialisation

“Of course companies that sell climate change solutions stand to benefit as greenhouse gas emissions come to bear a price tag.” – Daniel Esty Hillhouse, Professor of Environmental Law, Harvard University [8]

The corporate raiders of the 1980s first worked out that you might be able to make more money downsizing, or even breaking up industry than building it up. It is a perverse result of the profit motive that private gain should grow out of public decay. But even the corporate raiders neve dreamt of making deindustrialisation into an avowed policy goal which the rest of us would pay for.

What some of the cannier Green Capitalists realised is that scarcity increases price, and manufacturing scarcity can increase returns. What could be more old hat, they said, than trying to make money by making things cheaper? Entrepreneurs disdained the ‘fast moving consumer goods’ market.

Of course there is a point to all this. If labour gets too efficient the chances of wringing more profits from industry get less. The more productive labour is, the lower, in the end, will be the rate of return on investments. That is because the source of new value is living labour; but greater investment in new technologies tends to replace living labour with machines, which produce no additional value of their own.[9] Over time the rate of return must fall. Business theory calls this the diminishing rate of return.[10] Businessmen know it as the ‘race for the bottom’ – the competitive pressure to make goods cheaper and cheaper, making it that much harder to sell enough to make a profit. Super efficient labour would make the capitalistic organisation of industry redundant.

Manufacturing scarcity, restricting output and so driving up prices is one short-term way to secure profits and maybe even the profit-system. Of course that would also mean abandoning the historic justification for capitalism, that it increased output and living standards. Environmentalism might turn out to be the way to save capitalism, just at the point when industrial development had shown it to be redundant.

From megawatts to negawatts
One of the most destructive examples of manufactured scarcity is ‘clean energy’ and California’s ‘Negawatt Revolution’.

In 1997 the Club of Rome collaborated with Amory Lovins of the Rocky Mountain Institute to launch a new report Factor Four that promised to ‘halve resource use’ while doubling wealth. The message was that you could get rich saving the planet. A privileged few did indeed double their wealth; but for the rest it was just a case of halving resources.

Immodestly, Lovins made his own California energy scheme the main example of savings in Factor Four. His well-paid advice to the state of California was that it was a big mistake to adopt a system that rewarded increased electricity output with increased profits. Such a system would naturally tend to boost output. Instead rewards for cutting energy use were needed. Rather than getting paid for additional megawatts the utility companies should be rewarded for saving power use: negawatts.

The impact of Lovins’ model on energy generation in California was decisive. ‘Around 1980, Pacific Gas and Electricity Company was planning to build some 10-20 power stations’, according to Lovins.

“But by 1992, PG&E was planning to build no more power stations, and in 1993, it permanently dissolved its engineering and construction division. Instead as its 1992 Annual Report pronounced, it planned to get at least three quarters of its new power needs in the 1990s from more efficient use by its customers.”[11]

Of course the PG&E was not getting three quarters of its new power needs from anywhere: it had just reduced its output. But manufacturing energy scarcity did indeed grow somebody’s cash wealth: Enron’s. With these artificial caps on energy production the generating companies could start to hike up the charges to utility companies, including PG&E, now unable to meet its own customers’ demands. Those energy companies were owned by Enron.

Chief Executive Kenneth Lay turned Enron from a company that made its money generating power into one that made its money trading finance. Whatever else it was doing, there was no denying that Enron was cutting back its own CO2 emissions and getting rich doing it. One company memo stated that the Kyoto treaty ‘would do more to promote Enron's business than will almost any other regulatory initiative’.[12]

Amory Lovins’ negawatt revolution in California was Enron’s wet dream. Having shut down its own generation capacity, PG&E was at the mercy of Enron’s market manipulation. Buying surplus electricity on the open market PG&E was royally fleeced, losing $12 billion. Utility bills rose by nine times. Enron took advantage of the restricted market and cut electricity to California. They even invented reasons to take power plants offline while California was blacked out. Enron official joked that they were stealing one million dollars a day from California.[13] The PG&E that Lovins held up as a model went bankrupt and had to be baled out by the state of California.

The negawatt revolution in California was supposed to reward savings and alternative energy generation. In the event manufacturing scarcity only rewarded Enron’s crooked speculators, while penalising consumers.

Sadly, the lessons of the ‘negawatt revolution’ have been buried in the outrage about Enron’s fraudulent market manipulation. Few people noticed that Enron’s executives were taking advantage of an artificial scarcity in energy supply engineered by Amory Lovins and the PG&E all the time in close association with Enron’s favourite green lobby, the National Resources Defence Council.[14]

Few of Enron’s critics noticed that it was the very model of an environmentally friendly, post-industrial company and one that had taken Amory Lovins’ goal of doubling wealth by halving resource use to heart.

Saving energy is of course good sense − as long as that is done by resource efficiency. The Club of Rome’s claim that manipulating market prices to create incentives for reducing energy output can create efficiency is confused. All that achieved was an artificial shortage − the condition for ramping up utility bills.[15] The market incentive for energy efficiency comes with reduced bills from savings in raw materials and generation. Normal prices would give customers the incentive to reduce their electricity consumption in turn.

But amazingly the Enron-Lovins model of restricting supply is the one that is being adopted around the world. Utility companies are rewarding consumers for reducing their consumption from central power stations and encouraging domestic-sited energy generation, through windmills and solar panels. Playing on Californians’ distrust of the power companies the Environmental Protection Agency is planning to add solar power to one million new homes – paid for by another surcharge on utility bills. In Britain, the government is introducing regulations to make all new homes carbon-neutral. The current goal of carbon-neutral homes reverses the division of labour that saw specialised energy producers distribute electricity, turning it into an 18th-century cottage industry. The simple economic lesson that mass production avoids reproduction of effort has been lost. Nothing could be more wasteful, or more guaranteed to create new scarcity.

California’s ‘negawatt revolution’ is only one of the more extreme versions of the way that green priorities work in tandem with profiting by manufacturing scarcity. South African radical Dominic Tweedie argues that recent electricity blackouts there happened because of ‘a campaign to impose artificial scarcity’. The failure to build power stations to meet the growing demand from South Africa’s black townships was not recognised as a problem by activists there because they bought into the green prejudice that social aspirations could be met by redistribution alone, at the expense of increased output. Now supply companies are hiking up prices to the people who can least afford them.

From negawatts to nega-nosh
Elsewhere, food supplies are failing because the European Union and the United Nations have pursued a 20-year policy of retiring land from production to arrest the fall in farm prices.

Engineering the retirement of farmland is largely a way of easing small farmers (who had been protected under the old Common Agricultural Policy) out of farming altogether. It has not hurt the larger agribusinesses, which are thriving. Not surprisingly, farm goods are a target for speculators, like ’70s corporate raider, Jim Slater, whose new Agra Firma was started up to take advantage of booming prices. The reduction in excess output has in the last few years pushed prices up again, after long decades of falling food prices. In Italy, consumers boycotted pasta because prices rose so high; in Mexico, Tortilla Rallies protested against price rises, and in India there have been onion demonstrations.[16] The Economist estimates that food prices rose by one third in the year to December 2007 (having fallen by three quarters between 1975 and 2005).[17] According to the mainstream media, the pressure of biofuels and global warming are to blame for the shortfall in crops – as if governments had not been involved in a twenty-year programme of retiring land from production. Today’s scarcities have been engineered, in the name of saving the environment, but in fact to defend the livelihoods of big agriculture.

Setting caps on energy production, industrial output, car transport and house-building in the name of saving the environment all have the effect of damaging people’s standard of living. But as we have seen, that does not stop individual businesses from making big profits out of those caps. Trading in carbon rights, making windmills, carbon offsetting schemes, and organic food are all ways of making profits out of artificial limits set upon growth.

Chapter 8. Environmentalists in the ‘dismal science’

Latter-day environmentalists are irritated with economics. They object to the cost-benefit analyses that do not account for nature. They attack the ‘Washington Consensus’ of free market economists working at the World Bank and the International Monetary fund. The Washington Consensus, according to today’s environmentalists is making a fetish out of runaway growth that is trashing the environment.

But mainstream economics (sometimes called ‘neo-classical’ economics, for its return to the ideas of Adam Smith) is not really growth-oriented. Like environmentalism, neo-classical economics takes scarcity as a given. According to Lionel Robbins’ much-lauded account ‘Economics is the science which studies human behaviour as a relationship between ends and scarce means which have alternative uses.’[18]

Neo-classical economics is interested first and foremost in equilibrium or balance. The central claim of neo-classical economics is that the unimpeded market is a self-equilibriating system. Prices carry information that allows the equilibrium to reassert itself. Where supply is too great in relation to demand, prices fall, and producers reduce output; where supply is too small, prices will rise and producers increase output. Any disturbances or disproportionalities are quickly overcome as long as markets are free, according to the theory.

Taking equilibrium as its essential grounding, neo-classical economics has no room for growth in its theory. Growth is an external factor to neo-classical economics.[19] The nearest thing to growth in the neo-classical theory is the welfare gains that come with the optimum distribution of goods. Production remains a technical factor external to the subject of economics proper, market exchanges. Productivity growth is fundamentally a disturbance to the market equilibrium.

Though the greens have forgotten today, ecological theory was largely cribbed from economic theories of equilibrium. The word ecology was popularised by the now-discredited biologist Ernst Haekel (1834-1919), who thought that all nature was united in one self-correcting system, and that even politics was ‘applied biology’. In the nineteenth century defenders of the status quo insisted that the distribution of property between rich and poor was a law of nature that could not be broken. In books like Social Statics and Physics and Politics (‘the application of the principles of natural selection and inheritance to political society’,) Herbert Spencer and Walter Bagehot made the case for what they called ‘Social Darwinism’.

The economists’ belief that social stratification was ordained by nature mirrored the early ecologists’ belief that nature itself was in a state of equilibrium. Elaborating on geologist Eduard Suess’s demarcation of a ‘biosphere’ and Arthur Roy Harrod’s ecosystem, ecologists like Arthur Tansley argued that ‘mature well-integrated plant communities had enough of the characters of organisms to be considered as quasi-organisms’.[20] In 1979 James Lovelock took the argument one stage further, saying that the role that organic life played in sustaining the atmosphere indicated all the features of intelligence. Lovelock called this intelligence Gaia, after the Greek goddess of life. But Lovelock was making use of a poor definition of intelligent life as self-correcting feedback mechanisms, taken from cyberneticist Norbert Wiener’s theory of artificial intelligence. In truth such self-correcting mechanisms, as most biologists agreed, were simply stochastic, or chance occurrences.

Still, pre-modern, holistic ideas of a natural balance, that project an imaginary totality onto manifold nature are well entrenched in the popular mind. What is more, it is widely assumed that human industry is increasingly out of balance with nature, and even in some quarters that nature’s equilibrium will reassert itself in mass human extinction. To some misanthropes, mankind is even seen as a human plague.[21] More acceptably, it is common to treat the interchange between man and nature as if it were a market exchange, subject to the laws of equilibrium. So eco-spokesman Michael Jacob suggests that ‘the natural environment performs the function of a capital stock for the human economy’ as a preamble to the argument that ‘economic activity is currently running down this stock’.[22]

Despite past hostilities, ecologists and neo-classical economists are busy re-discovering their common ground. Bank of England economist Sir Nicholas Stern’s report on the presumed costs of climate change was a turning point for the suits. Having shed the view of unkempt green slackers, free market ideologues like Newt Gingrich are telling us that they always believed in keeping a proper balance with nature.[23]

And, being essentially systems of rationing, many environmental policies give more than a passing nod to the science of rationing, neo-classical economics. London Mayor Ken Livingstone admitted as much when he conceded that his congestion charge was drawn from an idea of the free market ideologue Milton Friedman. One unique contribution of environmentalism to the ‘dismal science’ of economics has been in the theories of ‘externalities’ – which is a fascinating insight into the way that capitalism projects social goals that are increasingly at odds with the outcome of market exchanges – and in that of ‘natural capital’.

[1] Paul Kennedy, The Rise and Fall of the Great Powers, London, Fontana, 1990, p.197
[2] ‘Estimating World GDP’ Brad DeLong,
[3] Worldwatch Institute, State of the World, London, W. W. Norton, 2004, p 7
[4] Guardian 15 April 2005
[5] Michael Maren, The Road to Hell, New York, The Free Press, 1997; Julie Hearn, ‘African NGOs: the new compradors?’ Development and Change, Volume 38 Issue 6 Page 1095-1110, November 2007
[6] Office of National Statistics, Britain 2000, London, HMSO, p.463
[7] Wendell Cox, War on the Dream, Lincoln, iUniverse, 2006, p. 73
[8] The Green List, The Guardian supplement, p.29, 5 November 2007
[9] See Karl Marx, Capital, Volume Three, ‘The law of the tendency of the rate of profit to fall’, London, Lawrence and Wishart, 1959, pp. 211-240.
[10] 'The Origin Of The Law Of Diminishing Returns', Edwin Cannan, 1813-15, Economic Journal, vol. 2, 1892.
[11] Amory Lovins, L. Hunter Lovins and Ernst von Wiezsacker, Factor Four: Doubling wealth, halving resource use, London, Earthscan, p. 160.
[12] How Environmentalists Sold Out to Help Enron, PR Watch Newsletter, Third Quarter 2003, Volume 10, No. 3.
[13] 'Tapes Show Enron Arranged Plant Shutdown', The New York Times, 4 February 2005.
[14] PR Watch Newsletter, op.cit.
[15] The Guardian, 6 August 2004.
[16] Jonathan Watts, ‘Riots and hunger feared as demand for grain sends food costs soaring,’ The Guardian, 4 December 2007.
[17] ‘Cheap no more’, The Economist, 6 December 2007
[18] Lionel Robbins, An Essay on the Nature and Significance of Economic Science, London, Macmillan, 1945, p. 16
[19] Economic theories of growth were awkwardly grafted onto neo-classical economic theory, by J.M. Keynes, W.W. Rostow and John Hicks – usually in a defensive reaction to the rise of the Socialist and Third World nationalist movements.
[20] ‘in the same way that human communities are habitually considered so’, Arthur Tansley, ‘The use and abuse of vegetational concepts and terms’, Ecology, Vol. 16, No. 3, July 1935, p.290
[21] See John Gray, Straw Dogs: thoughts on humans and other animals, London, Granta, 2003
[22] The Politics of the Real World, London, Earthscan, 1996, p.17
[23] See Newt Gingrich, A Contract with the Earth, Baltimore, John Hopkins University Press, 2007