Greens and living standards

June 10, 2009

My pal Nick Schulz comments on the political divisions between Christian Greens and Secular Greens. This bit really caught my eye:

For example, while secular greens and Christian greens both want prudent stewardship of the environment …  they will likely part ways on issues such as the importance of economic and population growth. … Benjamin Friedman and others such as Deidre McCloskey have argued persuasively that there are profound moral consequences to economic growth and that stagnation is hazardous to the moral health of a nation. This understandably prompts Christian greens to place more value on economic growth than secular greens, leading to differing views on regulation and other curbs on the free market. … And secular greens have never much cared for the injunction to “be fruitful and multiply” at least if the zero- andnegative-population-growth crowds are any indicator.

Me: This is a key political division. Should standards of living continue be raised in the US and the West, at least in material terms? A big thrust of current policymaking here would seem to say “No.”

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