From a conversation on the Commons Abundance Network.
Of course I agree a lot is solved by having it clear what you are using the word “growth” to refer to. But it’s easier to figure out we *should* be clear about what is being referred to than to really do it. It’s so easy to fall into the trap of treating some “positive indicator” as the system, some changing number that “sounds nice” in name, to end up promoting something not knowing what the real situation is at all.
That’s exactly how the BAU approach to consuming the planet ever faster got off track, using a trusted set of indicators and not paying the least attention to how their meanings were changing radically over time. So, that philosophy’s “mistake” was not paying attention to the whole system it was applying its values to.
It’s so easy to fall into the trap of treating some “positive indicator”
as “the system”
False priorities develop are all over the place that way. Giving relief wherever there is pain and suffering, for example, ignores that injecting artificial supports just skews the indicator. It changes the ability of people to care for themselves in the wrong way, giving them dependencies rather than independence, and directly causes their own local cultures to become useless to them and decay.