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Political leaders lacking vision with traditional "shovel ready" spending

Purchase of local, sustainable and nutritious groceries could create "virtuous-circle" economics to finance stimulus.

Nurturing more sustainable economic foundations for tomorrow.by Wayne Roberts

Instead of accepting today's economic downturn as a pink slip that can't be refused, what if our governments reacted as if they had received a Facebook invitation: by selecting "join cause", "learn more" or "ignore"?

When faced with the possibility of a recession, panicked politicians from around the world didn't consider a range of options; they didn't click on "learn more". Instead, they hit "join cause". With a similar lack of vision, governments the world over are trying to spend their way out of the crisis by dumping loads of money into infrastructure projects, claiming a need for "shovel-ready" projects to "kick start" the recovery.

The terms "shovel-ready" and "kick start" tell us that politicians turned to pre-ecological and pre-knowledge-based-economy styles of thinking. The possibility of a citizen-led economic recovery that featured agriculture, food and their allied sectors received no serious attention. But it should have, since such an approach could go a long way toward alleviating the ill effects of a downturn today while nurturing more sustainable economic foundations for tomorrow.

Click here for the full article.

Wayne Roberts manages the Toronto Food Policy Council and brings his creative approach to board meetings of Alternatives.

Posted: October 23, 2009

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