Who or What Will Do What Must Be Done?

Who or What Will Do What Must Be Done?

EDITORIAL, 9 Oct 2023

#817 | Howard Richards – TRANSCEND Media Service

In a previous editorial (What Must Be Done TMS 11 Sep 2023), I made the point that public discourse may not manifest underlying objective facts that play a key role in causing it.

For example, something that I am calling an objective fact, namely the objective need to spend public money to compensate for a chronic insufficiency of effective demand, may put wind in the sails of a belligerent discourse that vilifies a foreign power as an enemy and calls for a costly military intervention.  This paradox appears in a different light if it is considered that the logic of the system implies that increasing public debt one way or another is required.    Until there is a different system with a different logic it is the way to save jobs and to allow continuing, as distinct from stopping, producing for the purpose of selling. read more

What Must Be Done

What Must Be Done

EDITORIAL, 11 Sep 2023

#813 | Howard Richards – TRANSCEND Media Service

Videos produced by The Drawdown Project –a project that appears to be well-funded and to have the support of some (but not enough) powerful institutions—outline what must be done to prevent more climate catastrophes worse than the catastrophes already happening.  The main staff members of the project, including the narrator of the videos (Jonathan Foley) are climate scientists.  What must be done for the most part is in some measure already being done, but it is now done on too small a scale to stop or to reverse humanity´s lockstep march toward self-destruction. read more

Moral (and ethical) realism

This article advocates a naturalist and realist ethics of solidarity. Specifically, it argues that human needs should be met; and that they should be met in harmony with the environment. Realism should include respect for existing cultures and the morals presently being practiced – with reasonable exceptions. Dignity must come in a form understood and appreciated by the person whose dignity is being respected. It is also argued that naturalist ethics are needed to combat liberal ethics, not least because the latter supports today’s inflexible and dysfunctional institutions. In arguing for these positions, reference is made to the naturalist realist ethics of Georges Canguilhem, C.H. Waddington, John Dewey
and David Sloan Wilson, all of whom embed the social order in the natural order. read more

A General Solution to Economic Problems

I refer to the unsolved ones, not to those that are pretty satisfactorily solved already.   I focus on our two acronyms SF1 and SF2, where SF can be read as Staggering Fact or as Structural Fact. In the terminology of John Maynard Keynes SF1 generates a chronic shortfall of the inducement to invest.  Once a society comes to depend on investment-for-the-sake-of-production-for-the-sake-of-sale-for- the- sake-of-profit to meet its needs, investment becomes its drug.   It can never get enough of it.   SF2 generates a chronic insufficiency of effective demand. read more

An introduction to Activity Theory


An introduction to Activity Theory
Mary van der Riet
University of Kwazulu – South Africa
(transcript R.Carmen – July 2014)

Cultural-historical activity theory, or CHAT, with its roots in Soviet psychology, and Marx and Engels, has emerged as a significant phenomenon in the last few decades. This video introduces the notion of CHAT, locating it historically in the work of Vygotsky, Leont’ev and Engeström. It then develops the notion of activity system analysis based on Engeström’s work. read more