Small is Beautiful

A fabulous snippet from E.F. Schumacher's classic Small is Beautiful: 

"And what is my case? Simply that our most important task is to get off our present collision course. And who is there to tackle such a task? I think every one of us, whether old or young, powerful or powerless, rich or poor, influential or uninfluential.

To talk about the future is useful only if it leads to action now. And what can we do now, while we are still in the position of "never having it so good"? To say the least–which is already very much–we must thoroughly understand the problem and begin to see the possibility of evolving a new life-style, with new methods of production and new patterns of consumption: a life-style designed for permanence. 

To give only three preliminary examples: in agriculture and horticulture, we can interest ourselves in the perfection of production methods which are biologically sound, build up soil fertility, and produce health, beauty and permanence. Productivity will then look after itself. In industry, we can interest ourselves in the evolution of small-scale technology, relatively nonviolent technology, "technology with a human face", so that people have a chance to enjoy themselves while they are working, instead of working solely for their pay packet and hoping, usualy forlornly, for enjoyment during their leisure time. In industry, again–and, surely, industry is the pace setter of modern life–we can interest ourselves in new forms of partnership between management and men, even forms of common ownership."

Written 35 years ago. Would have been smart to have begun our work already then. But next best is to begin now.

//jan

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