Archive for June, 2008

The following comment by me appeared in today’s issue of Fund Strategy: The trend towards the “greening of Asia” represents one of the most retrograde developments of our time. Asia has benefited enormously from its rapid economic growth and could gain a lot more in the future. Anything that threatens such growth should be resisted […]

A couple of people have asked me what impact I think the current economic slowdown will have on growth scepticism. The assumption behind the question seems to be that economic restraint will somehow make people see the benefits of growth again. In my view the answer is not straightforward but, on balance, the growth sceptics […]

Evidently Fareed Zakaria, one of America’s most influential commentators on international relations, expresses concern about the impact of China’s economic growth on the global environment in his new book. Although he welcomes poverty reduction in China he is concerned that rapid growth will lead to such problems as climate change and water shortages. According to […]

After writing my piece on the campaign against the use of Indian child labour by suppliers to Primark (see 24 June post) an interesting parrallel occurred to me. It seems to me there are similarities between the campaign to “save” Indian children with Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall’s campaign for chicken welfare at Tesco. Both sets of campaigners […]

Spiked has published an article by me on the recent documentaries on child labour in India. It argues that ethical consumerism is nauseatingly elitist.

Benjamin Barber, a professor at the University of Maryland, writes that the contemporary world as besieged by two forces: consumerism and globalisation. Both of them, in his view, lead to the erosion of national autonomy. Consumerist capitalism is driven by an ethos of infantalisation which encourages narcissism and an obsession with consumption (he identifies key […]

The Economist has published a special report on energy in its current (19 June) edition.

Oxfam has published a book that looks likely to become highly influential in the development debate. Although From Poverty to Power, written by Duncan Green, probably says little original it codifies the current development consensus. It has a foreword by Amartya Sen and is endorsed by, among others, Dani Rodrik of Harvard. An accompanying website […]

Icfai Books in Hyderabad, India, has published Prosperity Index, a collection of articles including my January 2007 spiked essay arguing “There is no paradox of prosperity”. It is edited by Asha B Joshi, a faculty associate at the Icfai Business School Research Centre in Ahmedabad.

It seems that British documentary film-makers are becoming obsessed with cheap labour in India. After the awful Blood, Sweat and T-Shirts on BBC (see 18 April 2008 and 14 May 2008 posts) it seems that Panorama has a programme on the topic next week while Channel 4 is planning one entitled The Devil Wears Primark […]