Home > Uncategorized > A culture on the edge of failure

A culture on the edge of failure

from Ken Zimmerman

Most cultures in human history have failed. The consequences of cultural collapse are almost always catastrophic. Culture defines our existence and makes us who we are. Without culture we have no past and no future.

As all the products of the people of a society–material and non-material, culture is a complement to society, interacting people living in the same territory who share a common culture. Impossible to have one without the other (unless you want to call archaeological remains and historical records “culture” or “society”). People in society create culture; culture shapes the way people interact and understand the world around them. Culture determines what we know–the sum of all the angles in a triangle; what a screw driver is used for; how to use a computer to find out where Peloponnesians are… Culture also determines what we don’t know–how to catch a fish by hand; how to build a dugout canoe and navigate the South Seas without chart or compass. Culture determines what we want to be–lawyer; dairy farmer; computer programmer; doctor; shaman; pearl diver. Culture does this by providing the only options people can or will see at a time and place in history. In simple terms, culture makes human lives possible. When a culture no longer does this, when it impedes the continued being of a society, then the culture has failed. A culture such as Dr. Goodwin describes is on the edge of failure. Based on past cultural failures, this is not good news. Uncertainty, fear, and degradation generally follow. Is there any way to stop this?  https://rwer.wordpress.com/2019/06/21/necessary-changes-in-economic-theory/

  1. June 24, 2019 at 5:25 pm

    Cultural collapse of capitalist representative democracies and other mixed capitalist systems can no longer be avoided. Someone here posted a graph of CO2 growth from the year 0 and someone else objected to the meaningless Y axis.

    Here is that Scripps data with a meaningful Y axis; It clearly shows the inevitability of impending cultural collapse http://www.constituentassembly.org

  2. Craig
    June 24, 2019 at 5:49 pm


    You’re right, if a culture/science/intellectual discipline does not evolve it will collapse. The economic culture that the current monetary paradigm of Debt Only created hasn’t changed since humans stopped nomadically wandering and formed cities and states. What does that tell you? It tells you that you’d better start thinking integratively-paradigmatically. Or we could just obsessively blather on with the various reductionist orthodoxies of science and social science, and obsessively de-constructing DSGE……none of which are integrative modes of thought.

  3. Mike Ryan
    June 24, 2019 at 7:59 pm

    necessary changes in Econ Theory!!!

    Step one – Econ 101 is basically anti communist propaganda developed at the height of the Red scare. There are no supply and demand curves that predict anything. If someone starts their training in Econ 101 their paradigm is so far from the truth they have no chance in understanding economics. There is a reason why Econ is in social studies and not in the business school, One area teaches you what to think, the other area teaches you how to make a profit,

  1. No trackbacks yet.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.