Is Tom Friedman getting it?

SUBHEAD: The year when ‘The Great Disruption’ began or a place at the table with a clown hat on.
By George Mobus on 08 March 2009 in Question Everything
Image above:Detail of portrait of Thomas Friedman modified by Juan Wilson. From
Last Jan. I wrote "Tom Friedman connects some of the dots", after finishing his last book, "The World is Hot, Flat, and Crowded." I criticized Tom for being too enamored with the neoclassical model of economics, free markets, growth, etc. Imagine my surprise and delight at Tom's opinion piece this morning?
Let’s today step out of the normal boundaries of analysis of our economic crisis and ask a radical question: What if the crisis of 2008 represents something much more fundamental than a deep recession? What if it’s telling us that the whole growth model we created over the last 50 years is simply unsustainable economically and ecologically and that 2008 was when we hit the wall — when Mother Nature and the market both said: "No more."
The whole piece is exhilarating simply because Friedman is influential. Love him or hate him (I have very often disagreed with his conclusions but respect his observational skills) he is influential. So when Tom Friedman says the classical economic model of growth based on increasing sales is working against our best long-term interests I find this cause for rejoicing.
He even quotes Joe Romm ( who has been largely motivated by the desire to prevent radical climate change by reducing our carbon footprint. As my readers probably know by now I think we will run over the cliff of peak oil sometime sooner than we face truly catastrophic effects from climate change. Nevertheless Joe has been getting the relationship between consumption and energy use/carbon dioxide generation for a long while. The main point is that fossil fuel energy consumption, resulting in accelerating depletion of natural resources and fouling of our world, simply cannot be sustained any longer.
And now Tom seems to get it. One more group of dots connected by the NY Times columnist. Will his next book be called "The World is Hot, Flat, Crowded, and Needs to Contract!" Read the full article here.

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