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Book Review: Enough Is Enough

Enough Is Enough: Building a Sustainable Economy in a World of Finite Resources

by Rob Dietz and Dan O’Neill

Book Cover

Book Cover

2.7 billion of the planet’s 7 billion inhabitants are surviving on less than $2 per day, and yet some individuals have financial resources equal to small countries. Something is wrong. This book outlines what is fallacious about the current economic orthodoxy of continual growth – clearly impossible on a finite world – and proposes solutions: the authors’ alternative is a prosperous but non-growing economy, often called a steady-state economy.

Making use of economist Peter Victor’s computer models of the Canadian economy, they postulate the benefits of making a transition to a steady-state economy. This would reduce poverty and pollution emissions, while increasing GDP per capita and reducing government debt. The other business-as-usual approaches lead to disaster.

This admirable book sudies more equitable methods of generating value, reducing unemployment, and contributing to general well-being, while curtailing energy use, waste, and excessive production.

Its perspective crosses both US and UK experiences – one author, O’Neill, is British, while the other, Dietz, is an American. They are also aware of the need for global justice – the South needs to develop to provide for its citizens while the North needs to rein in its excessive consumption.

Overall, a thoughtful book which is an antidote to the current obsession with growth at all costs.

Enough is Enough

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