Welcome to European Tribune. It's gone a bit quiet around here these days, but it's still going.
I'm not disagreeing with you in practice.

The problem is that we (collectively) don't have a narrative framework that someone like Veblen can fit into.

If you have half a brain, solutions to the world's problems boil down to:

  1. Resource husbandry
  2. Human inventiveness

Which is all fine. But you're missing my point, which is that given the narrative systems that everyone works in today, neither of these is given a very high value.

What is given a high value is a stupid game called 'free market capitalism' which can be easily swayed to make some people very rich, and which is currently trying to turn everything it touches into a market.

No matter how clever Veblen was, I doubt anything in his philosophy explains how to tackle the political issue of persuading people to stop acting like idiots and start dealing with physical instead of the symbolic reality of capitalism.

And one reasons for that is that - as I said - many people are completely isolated from the effects of their lifestyle.

Veblen wasn't. But his reality isn't the reality that most people live in today.

So how are you going to persuade people to start paying attention to those kinds of issues when there's absolutely nothing in their immediate environment telling them they have to?

by ThatBritGuy (thatbritguy (at) googlemail.com) on Sat Mar 17th, 2007 at 03:05:48 PM EST
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