I’ve had these two bits on my desktop screen for months now. I don’t think I’m going to come up with anything else to say about either of these observations. However, I would like to share them. Also I think I’d like other opinions on the matter. (I’ve left the comments open.) So here is a very short post on somewhat related randomness.
Fixing the Mess Through Job Creation
The problem with going at our problems through the mechanism of job creation is that it is not profitable to fix most of our problems. You can’t fix waste, emissions, deforestation and a great many more things through the market. You can’t sell anything. Perhaps we can use public monies to pay people to plant trees. So if the jobs are public sector, that might work. But it will not work in the private sector. Well, unless we pay public monies to private enterprise to employ people doing unprofitable things — which sort of seems like an unnecessary financial drain. Because we should be doing all this for ourselves. Without any market involvement.
Sustainable vs Justice?
There is very little division between a transition to a sustainable world and the transition to a just world. Climate justice is almost redundant. If we fix the wrongs that create and perpetuate biophysical disruption and disaster, we will also be fixing the wrongs that create and perpetuate social disruption and disaster. Similarly, if we address all the societal wrongs across the planet, we’ll make the biophysical planet a healthier place to be. From polar melting to casual misogyny, rampant racism to runaway extinction, the steps needed to address our wrong-doing are the same. And none of these things we can do to make this world a better place are profitable. Thus corporate tech is not going to save us.
©Elizabeth Anker 2021
1 thought on “Couple Things…”
Agree! Jobs creation and the market is not going to save us as long as it happens in the current neoliberal capitalist system. Now, if the government would begin deliberately unravelling, jobs would be created for all sorts of new things. The government’s role then would be to make sure people could get free training for those newly emerging jobs (farming, etc) and could easily relocate from densely populated cities to the countryside. Which would also mean the government might need to help create housing and other small town infrastructure (more jobs!)
Working for climate justice also definitely is working to solve racial and gender and all sorts of other discriminations. Corporate tech will definitely not save us. they can all upload themselves into computers to live forever and then we can pull the power plug. I do worry though that rich authoritarian people could pre-empt the work for climate justice and create a world where the wealthy get to live comfortably and the rest of us spend our lives enslaved to make that happen.
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