I suppose Stoat will tell us why he doesn’t believe it, but until that happens let me bask in the happy glow of this article by Charles Eisenstein, suggesting a way to have a zero growth economy without shutting down the systems we have in place.
Quoting from Deep Thought, though, “You’re really not going to like it.”
Here’s the crux of the problem:
The reason is that our present money system can only function in a growing economy. Money is created as interest-bearing debt: it only comes into being when someone promises to pay back even more of it. Therefore, there is always more debt than there is money. In a growth economy that is not a problem, because new money (and new debt) is constantly lent into existence so that existing debt can be repaid. But when growth slows, good lending opportunities become scarce. Indebtedness rises faster than income, debt service becomes more difficult, bankruptcies and layoffs rise.
I think that’s clearer than I’ve seen before. Put that way, finding a solution actually doesn’t require all that much creativity. (That in itself tends to be a sign that the problem is formulated correctly.) But it will be a hard sell.