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  • ”Growth for the sake of growth is the ideology of the cancer cell.”
    – Edward Abbey
  • ”A growing nation is the greatest ponzi game ever contrived.”
    – Paul Samuelson
    economist
  • ”Continual increases in population and consumption cannot continue forever on a finite planet.”
    – Richard Heinberg
  • ”Any intelligent fool can make things bigger, more complex, and more violent. It takes a touch of genius — and a lot of courage to move in the opposite direction.”
    – E.F. Schumacher
    author: Small is Beautiful
  • ”There will inevitably come a time that the society drastically needs to change the way it interacts with the environment, or it will lose its coherence.”
    – Sander van der Leeuw
  • ”We’re going to need some kind of radical break with our past behavior if we’re to engineer a viable future.”
    – Mark Buchanan
    Bloomberg columnist
  • ”I have – over the last five years – quite rapidly become a Malthusian. I have been won over by the data, and I have been won over by the logic of the math.”
    – Jeremy Grantham
    investment strategist
  • ”We can just as easily have an economy that is based on healing the future instead of stealing it.”
    – Paul Hawken
  • ”There is a sufficiency in the world for man's need but not for man's greed.”
    – Mahatma Ghandhi
  • ”We can share the earth and take care of it together, rather than trying to possess it, destroying the beauty of life in the process.”
    – Dalai Lama
  • ”As I see it, humanity needs to reduce its impact on the Earth urgently and there are three ways to achieve this: we can stop consuming so many resources, we can change our technology and we can reduce the growth of our population.”
    – Sir David Attenborough
  • ”Because of this civilization’s obsession with growth, its demise is 100 percent predictable. We simply cannot go on living this way.”
    – Adam Sacks
  • ”If the world is saved, it will be saved by people with changed minds, people with a new vision. It will not be saved by people with the old vision but new programs.”
    – Daniel Quinn
    author: Ishmael and The Story of B
  • ”The inescapable failure of a society built upon growth and its destruction of the Earth’s living systems are the overwhelming facts of our existence.”
    – George Monbiot
    Guardian columnist
  • ”The free-market fundamentalists will tell you that more growth, more stuff and 9 billion people going shopping is the best we can do. They’re wrong. We can be more. We can be much more.”
    – Paul Gilding
    author: The Great Disruption
  • ”We created a way of raising standards of living that we can’t possibly pass on to our children.”
    – Joe Romm
    physicist
  • ”Our economic activity is at war with the planet.”
    – Naomi Klein
  • ”Who’s gonna stand up and save the Earth? Who’s gonna say that she’s had enough?”
    – Neil Young
  • ”If the world is saved, it will be saved by people with changed minds, people with a new vision. It will not be saved by people with the old vision but new programs.”
    – Daniel Quinn
    author: Ishmael and The Story of B
  • ”You don’t have a conservation policy unless you have a population policy.”
    – Paul Ehrlich
    author: The Population Bomb
  • ”At present we are stealing the future, selling it in the present, and calling it gross domestic product.”
    – Paul Hawken
  • ”On the one hand, it’s politically impossible to stop growth. On the other hand, it’s biophysically impossible to continue it ad infinitum. So, which impossibility is fundamentally impossible?”
    – Herman Daly
    former World Bank senior economist
  • ”In the short term, we must realize that we have better ways to create jobs and build the economy than holding an everything must go sale on our precious resources.”
    – Dr. David Suzuki
  • ”We can’t frack our way back to economic prosperity; nor can we unplug a coal plant, plug in a solar panel, and go on expanding population and consumption.”
    – Richard Heinberg
  • ”Population is the multiplier of everything we do wrong.”
    – Dr. Martha M. Campbell
  • ”Our economic activity is at war with the planet.”
    – Naomi Klein
  • ”Long-term sustainability requires a materially smaller economy (the pie) shared more equitably (not equally) by a smaller population.”
    – William Rees
    Co-originator of Ecological Footprint Analysis
  • ”The truth is this: the Earth cannot provide enough food and fresh water for 10 billion people, never mind homes, never mind roads, hospitals and schools.”
    – Richard Branson
  • ”This is not about whales anymore. It’s about us.”
    – Thomas Friedman
  • ”A growing nation is the greatest ponzi game ever contrived.”
    – Paul Samuelson
    economist
  • ”Continual increases in population and consumption cannot continue forever on a finite planet.”
    – Richard Heinberg
  • ”You don’t have a conservation policy unless you have a population policy.”
    – Paul Ehrlich
    author: The Population Bomb
  • ”Anyone who believes exponential growth can go on forever in a finite world is either a madman or an economist.”
    – Kenneth Boulding
    economist
  • ”We’ve globalized an utterly untenable economic model of hyperconsumerism. It’s now successfully spreading across the world, and it’s killing us.”
    – Naomi Klein
  • ”We can’t frack our way back to economic prosperity; nor can we unplug a coal plant, plug in a solar panel, and go on expanding population and consumption.”
    – Richard Heinberg
  • ”I have – over the last five years – quite rapidly become a Malthusian. I have been won over by the data, and I have been won over by the logic of the math.”
    – Jeremy Grantham
    investment strategist
  • ”In today’s full world, resources are not only scarce but have become the limiting factor”
    – Herman Daly
    former World Bank senior economist

Progress on the film

worstcrisis30years1

Phoenix, San Francisco, Dallas and Kansas City were in my viewfinder over the past six months as we passed a milestone: over 75% of Hooked on Growth has been shot. From volunteers crewing our shoots to authorities I’m interviewing about population, urban growth or the psychology of climate change denial, everyone I meet is cheering us on. I wish I had room here to share these stories. You’ll just have to see the film!

This film’s message is needed now, more than ever. I need your help to make that happen. I’ve got to shoot in Los Angeles next month, and I still must hit the East Coast for some important interviews. I’m very frugal on these trips, but they still rapidly deplete our resources. Please make a tax-deductible contribution to help fund these production trips and the editing ahead. . . .

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Birth Rate Hogwash

Gazette reporter Perry Swanson invested considerable time into trying to understand why I discount growth boosters’ preoccupation with using “net natural increase” and “net migration” figures to give the impression fertility is the biggest contributor to our burgeoning local population. So it surprised and disappointed me to see a gross figure, birth rate, compared with net migration in both a caption and his story (Look how we’ve grown, 3/16/06). That’s the kind of manipulation of data I’ve come to expect from the growth industry.

One might wonder if there’s something in our water making us much more fertile than the rest of the country. The fertility rate in the U.S. today is just barely above replacement level, so it defies logic that birth rate would be the biggest contributor to our rapidly growing El Paso County population. Part of the explanation is we have many young military families of child-bearing age. Our state demographer has confirmed most of those babies leave the county within a year or two of their birth. . . .

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Growth: Just Say No

Your Turn

Published August 8, 2002 in The Colorado Springs Independent

It’s time we talk frankly about development, baseball stadiums, convention centers, traffic and water. Someone has to be the first to stand up and say the emperor has no clothes!

Jeff Smith wants to build a baseball stadium downtown. Rocky Scott works to attract new businesses to town. Terry Sullivan tells us we need Confluence Park and a convention center in the south end. These efforts have one thing in common: Developers stand to make money if these projects are successful.

Does Smith want to move the Sky Sox in order to revitalize downtown? Or because he’ll make millions from development around the stadium? We already have a charming, vibrant and vital downtown. Jeff’s plans will ensure we have gridlock on Interstate 25 even if it’s widened even further. . . .

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Banning Lewis Ranch

Op Ed submitted by Dave Gardner to The Gazette
(it was edited down and printed as an LTE)

The Gazette’s story Sunday about Banning Lewis Ranch (BLR) could only scratch the surface of implications for our city’s future. BLR is very significant to our community because, as the story pointed out, the massive 24,000 acre development represents about a third of the city’s geographic footprint.

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Artificial Growth Stimulant Unwise

I urge you to consider carefully your approach to development application fees this month, and generally your approach to assessing new development for all its impacts – not just on the city general fund but directly on every local resident. These fees are a relatively small step, but we must start somewhere in revising our past practice of embracing growth without regard for the true net financial impact. I appreciate your desire not to reward any deception by city staff in the budgeting process, but the importance of this issue to our future transcends the petty backroom politics.

Current Practice Artificially Stimulates Growth

The impact of new development extends way beyond the city’s general fund. If one dispassionately and objectively adds up ALL the financial impacts of new subdivisions, fees charged don’t come close to covering them. This amounts to a subsidy from the city and the local residents, which serves to distort . . .

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