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Living on Earth as if we want to stay

Mike Nickerson will be at [ location here ] on [ date ] [ time ] to speak with the [ name of club ] about his book "Life, Money & Illusion; Living on Earth as if we want to stay." His topic is increasingly relevant in this time of financial uncertainty.

"While the present economic system is in turmoil," Nickerson says, "there is light, not at the end of the tunnel, but under the shining sun."

Progress, until now, has been defined solely in terms of economic expansion. While this tunnel vision made sense in the first centuries after the industrial revolution, it has become a problem today. In the developed world, due to industrial efficiency, human need had essentially been met by the 1950s. Growth from that time has increasingly required obsolescence and waste. By the 1980s, this was no longer enough. Further growth was enabled by deregulating the savings and loans industries, "junk bonds," the Dot Com bubble and recently the bidding up of real estate and lending for sub-prime mortgages.

This succession of financial bubbles appeared to work until energy driven inflation prompted interest rate increases that many sub-prime mortgage holders were unable to pay. Pop!

That's the bad news. The good news is that the human family is now mature. We don't have to grow forever. Well-being now depends on the sustainable management of natural resources, passing along the skills needed to provide goods and services and the maintenance of social harmony so that we are willing and able to trade.

In "Life, Money & Illusion" Nickerson explains how we can measure progress in terms of sustainability. By taking actions to improve such measures, we would soon find more time to enjoy living and the world of our children and grandchildren would hold more promise.

More about measuring genuine progress at: