Category: development

Is minimalism going to save the economy?

Support New Economics

For a long time, minimalism was a concept people had heard of only in art. It is everywhere now- minimalism has taken over almost all parts of our life and for good reason. A large part of all our lives is spent trying to accumulate wealth, and material products that we might not even have any need for. As a culture, we have started conditioning people into thinking that they need a lot more things than they actually do- the only way we can keep a capitalist economy actually going.

A capitalist economy cannot be sustainable over a long period of time- the structure is crumbling, and we have already started seeing the cracks. This might explain why a lot of people are ardently supporting the cause of “new economics”. New Economics is more sustainable, and it is highly minimalist. The basis of this form of economy is not just wealth accumulation, but it is the well being of the people as well as the planet.

We need a new way of measuring wealth, so that we can redefine progress. A lot of economists and scientists are not entirely too positive about where we are headed, as a species. Embracing new economics might help take us in a completely different direction- one that might actually save the earth.

TOMS Shoes and the Economy of Social Business

Really interesting debate around the social business model that TOMS shoes has taken up in this article. I think it’s important to discuss this and take a look at the implications of these models in the market and ask if they really make a significant difference. A marxist critique mentioned in the article which I’ve also managed to watch by Zizek harshly criticizes this model and its implications for development in impoverished countries.

toms shoes and social business model

My problem has always been that they give these shoes to people but they are made poorly in China. I mean the quality isn’t half bad but the issues surrounding human rights and labour rights in China are just as bad as the countries that they are giving the shoes to. I don’t know if it really solves any issues besides promoting the triple business model that seeks to satisfy everyones needs, Profit & people. I don’t think it can really work this way, the sweatshops will continue to function and the shoes will be continually produced for a high profit by Chinese labourers who are not compensated properly. I much prefer something such as the Adbuster shoe which looks more closely at the equality around the labour process than the actual charitable giving as the social component of their business.