The main concept expressed in Simon Dalby’s Challenging Carboniferous Capitalism is about capitalist economics. It stated the different issues and concerns related to how capitalist economics work. The article expressed the relevance of knowing the connection of the current situation of the environment to the different decisions made in the political economy that could lead to social change. Describing the process of how capitalist economics works, one can see definite manifestations of the improper distribution of resources that is now also slowly depleting despite the growing demand.
The scope of the problem is also sufficiently explained making one able to picture a world that will later lead to distraction if not given due attention soon. The article greatly gave emphasis to the environmental problems and catastrophes resulted from political movement that is basing nominal figures of growth rather than understanding nature and its role in every people’s lives. It is greatly connected to the issue of consumerism. The article is putting forward what consumerism has done to our environment and to people that are economically or financially challenged.
It is magnifying on the inequality present because of selfishness and greed. According to Anup Shah’s article Consumption and Consumerism, the impacts of consumerism both positive and negative are very significant to all aspects of people’s lives and the planet. He specifically pointed out the imbalance of the distribution of benefits to people. As a capitalist economy is fed by consumerism, both these concepts are seen together in the picture. Dalby cited different developments in how environmentalists today assert their cause in saving mother Earth.
He also mentioned the nasty ways people try to meet with the growing demand for material needs both necessity and luxury, the benefit of reducing consumerism and seeing the value of one’s action as it affects everyone. In the whole, Dalby expressed abhorrence to the reality today that to instill the value of life to people one is to base their arguments to highly technical matters as trading quotas and industrial standards just to make corporations understand that they are trying to destroy the environment in making money.
The highlighted issue in Dalby’s article greatly pictures the situation of our times today, known and unknown to many. It is known because there have been many environmental catastrophes happening for the past ten years such as the hurricane Katrina, the tsunami in Thailand, the storm Ondoy in the Philippines, and many others. But it is unknown still to many because people never see consumerism and a capitalist economic system are one of the culprits to these disasters. As mentioned, the Kyoto Protocol and other climate change negotiations have failed to encourage all nations to act on their part in saving mother Earth.
One of them was China which is now reported as the second largest economic power passing Japan (The New York Times, 16 Aug 2010). In the article, it was said that China “is reluctant to play a greater role in the debate over climate change or how to slow the growth of greenhouse gases,” though they are currently instilling an ambitious program to cut energy it uses on economic output by 20 percent by the end of 2010. This initiative is yet to be seen. The concept, capitalist economy as discussed in Challenging Carboniferous Capitalism is not really defining much of the top players in the issue which I believe is the capitalists.
It greatly centered on the effects of capitalist economy to what people value best in life—which is now more on materialism. Because of the author’s emphasis, he connected other concepts as consumerism and materialism to further his explanation. The point that is seen relevant starting with this concept is on how the policy making of government and institutions are influenced by capitalist economic system because the money is there and the capitalists are the ones seen in the spotlight when talking about a country’s economic standing. The concept can not put directly into account the individuals, which are the consumers that support it.
The question that one can raise in putting this concept affront in this article is that, why not directly mention the capitalists need to see the value of life rather than directing to the consumers? Bibliography http://finance. yahoo. com/news/China-Passes-Japan-as-nytimes-2766831302. html? x=0&. v=1 China passes Japan as second-largest economy, 2010. 16 Aug 2010. 16 Aug 2010. Shah, Anup. “Consumption and Consumerism. ” http://www. globalissues. org/issue/235/consumption-and-consumerism. Global issues, 03 September 2008. 16 August 2010,