the guardian I 03. Sept. Charles Eisenstein: 'We can't grow ourselves out of debt, no matter what the Federal Reserve does'

Let's replace our fixation on growth with a steady-state economy focusing on lower consumption, leisure and ecological health

Federal Reserve chairman Ben Bernanke's pledge at Jackson Hole last Friday to "promote a stronger economic recovery" through "additional policy accommodation" has drawn criticism from economists, liberal and conservative, who question whether the Fed has the wherewithal to stimulate economic growth. What we actually need is more spending, say the liberals. No, less spending, say the conservatives. But underneath these disagreements lies an unexamined agreement, a common assumption that no mainstream economist or policy-maker ever questions: that the purpose of economic policy is to stimulate growth.

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