ISBN 978-0-86571-609-4. “The Long Descent – A User’s Guide to the End of the Industrial Age” by John Michael Greer was published by New Society in 2008. Well over two years ago we reviewed Greer’s “The Ecotechnic Future” and generally quite liked his work. “The Long Descent” is essentially the same book reworked into a new form. If you read one you pretty much get the other. In his last book Greer challenged the ‘sudden collapse’ beliefs of the Peak Oil crowd. For him it would be a drawn-out descent of several hundred years. In THIS work Greer spends more time unravelling the cultural origins of both the ‘sudden collapse’ & what he calls the “myth of progress”.
ISBN 978 1 900322 50 8. “Future Scenarios – How communities can adapt to peak oil and climate change” by David Holmgren was published by Green Books in 2009. Although only three or four years old this book already looks dated somehow. It is a contemporary of Rob Hopkins’ original “Transition Handbook” and Shaun Chamberlin’s “Transition Timeline“. There was a brief flurry if such publications a few years back – but, no more. Their apparent visions of imminent energy collapse proved empty. What we got instead was financial collapse. Still, there is nothing obsolete in this publishing genre. It took as a while to catch up with this publication. So, let’s take a brief walk down memory lane to remember how it all began… Continue reading
ISBN 978-0-141-03651-9. “How Markets Fail – The Logic of Economic Calamities” by John Cassidy was published by Penguin in 2009 (although this is a review of the 2010 reprint which has an extra “Afterword” at the end covering 2009 to 2010). Cassidy is better known for his 2002 work “Dot.Con”. He is an economics journalist whose work can be found gracing the pages of the Sunday Times and the New York Post. Judging by the accolades on the cover pages this work was very well received by the establishment achieving “Book of the Year” in The Economist, The Times, The Evening Standard and the Daily Telegraph. Let’s be clear: this is mainstream.
“Growthbusters – Hooked on Growth” is a 90 minute documentary film made in 2011 with the help on non-profit organisation Citizen-Powered Media. It is certainly very citizen-powered being largely produced, written and directed by campaigner Dave Gardner. He also appears in most of the film and narrates it. It is largely his story. He is quite a find: media-friendly and passionate about his subject. The movie’s strength is in its strong central narrative and use of humour. It is highly watchable, playful, fun and not at all grim. If it has one weakness it is its pre-occupation with busting growth without delivering a strong enough message about what will replace growth.