What Matters?: Economics for a Renewed Commonwealth by Wendell Berry

By Wendell Berry

Over the years, Wendell Berry has sought to appreciate and confront the monetary constitution of contemporary society and the impression of constructing past due capitalism on American tradition. there's possibly not more hard or vital critique on hand to modern electorate than Berry’s writings — simply as there's no vocabulary extra given to obfuscation than that of economics as practiced by way of pros and lecturers. Berry has referred to as upon us to come back to the fundamentals. He has traced how the readability of our fiscal process has eroded over the years, because the monetary asylum used to be overtaken through the inmates, and voters have been grew to become from shoppers — entertained and distracted — to sufferers, threatened by means of a way forward for depression and disillusion.
For this assortment, Berry bargains essays from over the past 25 years, along new essays in regards to the fresh monetary cave in, together with “Money as opposed to items” and “Faustian Economics,” treatises of significant alarm and braveness. He deals recommendation and viewpoint that are meant to be heeded by means of all involved as our society makes an attempt to guide from its current chaos and recession to a way forward for desire and chance. With urgency and readability, Berry asks us to seem towards a real sustainable commonwealth, grounded in reasonable Jeffersonian rules utilized to our current day.

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All of this entertainment came free of charge, as a sort of overflow of human nature, local culture, and daily life. Even the beauty of good work and well-made things was a value added at no charge. The entertainment industry has improved upon this great freedom by providing at a high cost, in money but also in health and sanity, an egregiously overpaid corps of entertainers and athletes who tell or perform stories, sing, dance, and play games for us or sell games to us as we passively consume their often degrading productions.

It is a way for people of wealth to exploit the poor, whom they have been instructed to care for. Only the wealthy have a surplus of money to lend, and they should not use it to take advantage of the needs of others. ” Aristotle in The Nicomachean Ethics also condemns usury and in language that is remarkably consistent with my description of our own economic malpractice. He classes usurers with pimps, as people who take “anything from any source” or who “take more than they ought and from wrong sources” (the Oxford edition, translated by Sir David Ross).

Everybody does. And in a money-using economy, people need to earn money by their work. Even so, to speak of “a job” as if it were the only economic need a person has, as if it doesn’t matter what the job is or where a person must go in order to have it, is brutally reductive. To speak so is to leave out virtually everything that is humanly important: family and community ties, connection to a home place, the questions of vocation and good work. If you have “a job,” presumably, you won’t mind being a stranger among strangers in a strange place, doing work that is demeaning or unethical or work for which you are unsuited by talent or calling.

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