The fallacy of ‘Fair Growth’ and the alternative of Social Ecology


On September 14 in Athens (Greece) it was held an event entitled “The Fallacy of ‘Fair Growth’ and the alternative of Social Ecology”, co-organized by TRISE and the Greek political journal Babylonia.

The event took place at the free social space Nosotros, located at the historic neighborhood Exarcheia, famous for its politically active inhabitants, many self-organized and democratic structures and initiatives etc. The attendance peaked to close to 70 people – a significant amount for mid-September, when many Athenians are still on holiday. The panelists of the evening were Dimitri Roussopoulos (TRISE), Panos Petridis (Alpen University, Vienna) and Yavor Tarinski (Babylonia).

One of the focuses of the event – the critique on ‘Fair Growth’ – was prompted by the recent adoption of this notion by the Greek current government as its central political goal. Through this move, the governing coalition becomes the main political lever of capitalist modernization and expansion of domestic capital accumulation. The ‘Fair Growth’ narrative argues that the ‘economic’ pie must continue to grow, in order to be shared more equitably, thereby concealing the fact that capitalist growth necessarily involves degradation of society and nature.

Thus the second focus of the event – the paradigm of social ecology – which radically challenges the consensus on the growth doctrine held by the ruling elites, both on the Right and the Left. Social Ecology refutes the idea that we can continue down the same path, with the same policies that have triggered the current crises, by just wrapping it up in a new, presumably more ‘socially-friendly’ narrative. Instead it offers a radically different paradigm, which goes beyond the economistic dogmas and hierarchies of today, and which is based on democratic participation and ecological sustainability.

The whole event was video recorded (see below). Note that the event was mainly held in Greek but the presentation of Dimitri Roussopoulos and Yavor Tarinski is in English.

At the end of the evening the audience was informed about the upcoming TRISE conference, which will take place in Thessaloniki in September, 2017, as well as about the Transnational Institute of Social Ecology and its goals in general. A month later, on 11 of October, the first general assembly of the Athenian section of TRISE for this year was held.

Video from the event:

October 16, 2016

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