Book review: Limits to Growth

Who could have predicted the climate crisis? Emmanuel Macron, President of the French Republic, 31.12.2022 This is a review of a deeply unfashionable book. It was published a little over half a century ago, which is certainly inconvenient for those who, like M. Macron, would like to suggest that these issues are a recent development.Continue reading “Book review: Limits to Growth”

On false hope

If wishes were horses, beggars would ride. Proverb Well, here we are in 2023, and maybe some of you have been making New Year’s resolutions, and maybe you’re even still sticking to at least some of them. I’ve written before about the dangers of hope, at least when not accompanied by effective action. The mostContinue reading “On false hope”

Predictions for 2023

Predictions are a mug’s game. Nigel Farage So another year draws to a close, and as is my custom I’ll be looking back on my predictions for 2022 and having another bash for the year to come. So this what my crystal ball showed last time: (1) Russia to invade or annexe Ukraine but notContinue reading “Predictions for 2023”

On death and rebirth

Nothing can dwindle to nothing, as Nature restores one thing from the stuff of another, nor does she allow a birth, without a corresponding death. Titus Lucretius Carus, De Rerum Natura, Book I. Regular readers of this blog will know that I tend to write a post at each of the four quarters of theContinue reading “On death and rebirth”

On the suppression of agriculture

The ultimate goal of farming is not the growing of crops, but the cultivation and perfection of human beings. Masanobu Fukuoka, The One-Straw Revolution, Warning: Contains book recommendations. Proceed at your peril. Only a complete idiot, of course, would want to suppress agriculture. But apparently we now have complete idiots in charge of our foodContinue reading “On the suppression of agriculture”

On the approach of winter

For the night is dark and full of terrors. George R.R. Martin, A Clash of Kings I often use this blog to point out the turning-points of the cycle of the year. Here in the northern hemisphere, we are approaching the autumn equinox, the point when the nights start to be longer than the daysContinue reading “On the approach of winter”

On population

Malthus has been buried many times, and Malthusian scarcity with him. But as Garrett Hardin remarked, anyone who has to be reburied so often cannot be entirely dead. Herman E. Daly, Steady-State Economics: The Economics of Biophysical Equilibrium and Moral Growth (1991) There are several canned responses that always seem to come up whenever theContinue reading “On population”

On the spectacularly obvious

We have to shift our attitude of ownership of nature to relationship with nature. The moment you change from ownership to relationship, you create a sense of the sacred. Satish KUmar Well, I try quite hard not to respond to all the examples of head-banging idiocy I see in the press, because life is shortContinue reading “On the spectacularly obvious”

On domestication

The creatures outside looked from pig to man, and from man to pig, and from pig to man again; but already it was impossible to say which was which. George Orwell, Animal Farm If you read any history of the beginnings of agriculture – and if you haven’t yet, I recommend that you do; ColinContinue reading “On domestication”

Book review: Going to Seed

Going to Seed: A Counterculture Memoir by Simon Fairlie (Chelsea Green, 2022), ISBN: 978-1-64502-061-5 You might know Simon Fairlie’s name from his previous book, Meat: A Benign Extravagance (Permanent Publications, 2010), which rather remarkably caused George Monbiot to change his mind about veganism. Perhaps you’ve come across the magazine he founded, The Land, if youContinue reading “Book review: Going to Seed”