The scientific method of the modern era has brought us into the environmental crisis. This approach alone will not bring us out of this crisis. Instead, we must take recourse to additional approaches. We consider the teleological approach to be a suitable one.
Politicians give advisers little time. Not seldom only five minutes. How can advisers cope with this challenge? The stocks framework offers an answer.
Mainstream Economics’ strength is the analysis of the price system of an economy. This allows an encompassing examination of economic interdependencies. However, it reveals also Mainstream Economics’ weakness. Goods and services which have no price, are not in the focus anymore: This reveals the origin of the environmental crisis.
Justice concerns more than a just income and a just wealth distribution, because it is a central presupposition for sustainability. Why is this so? Justice within a present generation and between present and future generation is a precondition for sustainability.
“We do not picture our readers solely as researchers or students of science or the humanities, but also as anyone in the fields of politics, management, economics, education or the media who has an interest in ecological questions. What we have to offer is a studium generale.” (Faber and Manstetten 2010: 2)
How do the basics of life evolve according to our present modes of production, distribution and consumption?
“You can turn an egg into an omelette, but you can’t turn an omelette into an egg.” (Saying)
“But – a fact hard to explain – loud though the noise caught by the entropy law, second law of thermodynamics, has been in physics and the philosophy of science, economists have failed to pay attention to this law, the most economic of all physical laws.” (Georgescu-Roegen 1971: 280)
Kant gives us three fundamental questions: “What can I know?”, “What shall I do?” and “What can I hope for?” Let us start by looking at the first!
“What is time then? If nobody asks me, I know: but if I were desirous to explain it to one that should ask me, plainly I know not.” (Augustine)
As Kant put it: An 18-year-old can be a good mathematician thanks to talent and arduous work. But he won’t be able to be a good physician or politician, because these professions require power of judgement.
“The price of greatness is responsibility.” (Winston Churchill)
“It is not the strongest of the species that survives, nor the most intelligent, but the one most responsive to change.” (Charles Darwin)
From a thermodynamic point of view, there is no industrial production of a good without the manufacturing of at least one waste product. The practical implication of this phenomenon, called joint production, is the essence of our environmental problem.
The question “If I am not for myself, who is for me?”, is what concerns the Homo Oeconomicus. In contrast, the Homo Politicus asks: “If I am not for others, who am I?”