#ConquestofDough Squaring the Energy, Food, Production, Usury circle.

Towards an energy Based Monetary Unit, free of Usury.

Introduction to Technocracy – 1933

https://archive.org/details/introductiontotec00tech

discussions — of ‘value,’ of fluctuating prices, of the gold standard, of changing interest rates, of items of pecuniary wealth which are at the same time items of debt — are
merely discussions looking toward a readjustment of the factors which prevent them
The problem of analysing political choices against the metric of a Monetary measure is the Money as a Thing is most certainly a Variable and as any good technologist, scientist or metrologist will tell you a unit of measurement has to be clearly defined and fixed.
The dollar. He notes that it is a variable. Why anyone should attempt, on this earth, to use a
variable as a measuring rod is so utterly absurd that he dismisses any serious
consideration of its use in his study of what should be done.
He also considers ‘price’ and ‘value’ and the fine- spun theories of philosophers and
economists who have attempted to surround these terms with the semblance of meaning.
These terms, like the monetary unit, may have had meaning to men in the past but they
mean nothing whatsoever to the modern technologist. The standard of measurement is
not relevant to the things measured; and the measuring rod and the things, measured as if

they were stable, are all variables.

Incor­po­rat­ing energy into pro­duc­tion func­tions

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In my last post on my Debt­watch blog, I fin­ished by say­ing that the Phys­iocrats were the only School of eco­nom­ics to prop­erly con­sider the role of energy in pro­duc­tion. They ascribed it solely to agri­cul­ture exploit­ing the free energy of the Sun, and specif­i­cally to land, which absorbed this free energy and stored it in agri­cul­tural prod­ucts. As Richard Can­til­lon put it in 1730:
The Land is the Source or Mat­ter from whence all Wealth is pro­duced. The Labour of man is the Form which pro­duces it: and Wealth in itself is noth­ing but the Main­te­nance, Con­ve­nien­cies, and Super­fluities of Life. (Can­til­lon, Essai sur la Nature du Com­merce in Général (Essay on the Nature of Trade in Gen­eral)
Quesnay’s famous but neglected “Tableau Economique” there­fore described the agri­cul­tural sec­tor as “the pro­duc­tive sec­tor” and man­u­fac­tur­ing as “sterile”—see Fig­ure 1.
Fig­ure 1: Quesnay’s “Tableau Economique”, first drafted in 1759, two decades before Watt’s steam engine
This was a jus­ti­fied asser­tion at the time, given that the Phys­iocrats wrote before the Indus­trial Revolution—and in par­tic­u­lar the wide­spread exploita­tion in man­u­fac­tur­ing of stored solar energy in fos­sil fuels– and orig­i­nated in France, which was then over­whelm­ingly a rural nation.
Smith, who was influ­enced by the Phys­iocrats and wrote in Britain when indus­try was start­ing to exploit fos­sil fuels(specif­i­cally coal) on a grand scale, could have cor­rected this over­sight. But rather than fol­low­ing the Phys­iocrats’ lead on energy, Smith instead saw labour—not energy—as the font of wealth (which he described in the same terms as Can­til­lon: the “con­ve­nien­cies of life”), and ascribed the increase in pro­duc­tiv­ity over time to “the divi­sion of labour”:
The annual labour of every nation is the fund which orig­i­nally sup­plies it with all the nec­es­saries and con­ve­nien­cies of life which it annu­ally con­sumes, and which con­sist always either in the imme­di­ate pro­duce of that labour, or in what is pur­chased with that pro­duce from other nations…
The great­est improve­ment in the pro­duc­tive pow­ers of labour, and the greater part of the skill, dex­ter­ity, and judg­ment with which it is any­where directed, or applied, seem to have been the effects of the divi­sion of labour. (Smith 1776, An Inquiry into the Nature and Causes of the Wealth of Nations)
Eco­nom­ics thus lost the Phys­iocrats’ focus on energy, and instead descended first into the “Labour the­ory of value” and then into the Neo­clas­si­cal (and Post Key­ne­sian) notions of “pro­duc­tion func­tions” in which energy played no role at all.
rogerglewis
August 17, 2017 at 12:01 pm
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Solar Breeders are an interesting question regarding renewables. Thorium Nuclear is also an interesting question.
Pricing in Energy and not Cost of money ( Internal Rates of return vis cost of capital is not a new Thing.
Soddy was alive to it and it figures in the 1932 book Technocracy.
EROEI under rapid growth[edit]
A related recent concern is energy cannibalism where energy technologies can have a limited growth rate if climate neutrality is demanded. Many energy technologies are capable of replacing significant volumes of fossil fuels and concomitant green house gas emissions. Unfortunately, neither the enormous scale of the current fossil fuel energy system nor the necessary growth rate of these technologies is well understood within the limits imposed by the net energy produced for a growing industry. This technical limitation is known as energy cannibalism and refers to an effect where rapid growth of an entire energy producing or energy efficiency industry creates a need for energy that uses (or cannibalizes) the energy of existing power plants or production plants.[37]
The solar breeder overcomes some of these problems. A solar breeder is a photovoltaic panel manufacturing plant which can be made energy-independent by using energy derived from its own roof using its own panels. Such a plant becomes not only energy self-sufficient but a major supplier of new energy, hence the name solar breeder. Research on the concept was conducted by Centre for Photovoltaic Engineering, University of New South Wales, Australia.[38][39] The reported investigation establishes certain mathematical relationships for the solar breeder which clearly indicate that a vast amount of net energy is available from such a plant for the indefinite future.[40] The solar module processing plant at Frederick, Maryland[41] was originally planned as such a solar breeder. In 2009 the Sahara Solar Breeder Project was proposed by the Science Council of Japan as a cooperation between Japan and Algeria with the highly ambitious goal of creating hundreds of GW of capacity within 30 years.[42] Theoretically, breeders of any kind can be developed. In practice, nuclear breeder reactors are the only large scale breeders that have been constructed as of 2014, with the 600 MWe BN-600 and 800 MWe BN-800 reactor, the two largest in operation.
On Criticism of DSGE Models, post before this excellent post and another real humdinger, I made these responses to an old Reddit discussion provoked by that Discourse. I agree A need for Pluralism is very much needed, would this extend to those of us who reject Usury in the fully Aristotlean sense?
http://letthemconfectsweeterlies.blogspot.se/2017/08/economic-models-and-political-economy.html

 

Roger Lewis 

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Thermoeconomics This is all very admirable, the field has existed in Environmental Economics for some time. Manfreed Neef is worth a look. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3uHSkgCg_yY
P.s, I am not a big fan of the sophistry approach to Patreon. It is not a good way to encourage an Economics Commons, another contradiction of Capitalist apologists.
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A Johnson 

pretty sure the model does not include the energy use per head in the countries that actually produced what we used, and fractionated it for the energy use that went to domestic market, and the export market, and the cost to deliver goods across an ocean, truck them to stores, and into the hands of final consumers. And since the earth is a closed loop, we should count the energy cost of post-consumer recycling, and taking refuse to the landfill.

Reply  

Michael Powell 

extremely interesting and beautifully elegant implementation. my profs always waved away A which was the interesting part of the story of production! i will be sure to send this on
Reply  

 

 


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5 thoughts on “#ConquestofDough Squaring the Energy, Food, Production, Usury circle.

  1. Top comments
    Roger Lewis
    Roger Lewis1 second ago
    Prof Keen is a fine Monetary Theorist and not so strong on the ol´ Atmospheric Physics. Readers and watchers might find the Rocket Science Journal of assistance in Explaining what is singularly garbled in this presentation at 46 mins.

    http://www.rocketscientistsjournal.com/

    On the Limits for Growth please also take account of the criticisms of the assumed boundary conditions, again a source of confusion in Prof Keens explanations in this video.

    Robert Solow from MIT argued that prediction in The Limits to Growth was based on a weak foundation of data (Newsweek, March 13, 1972, p. 103). Allen Kneese and Ronald Riker of Resources for the Future (RFF) stated:

    The authors load their case by letting some things grow exponentially and others not. Population, capital and pollution grow exponentially in all models, but technologies for expanding resources and controlling pollution are permitted to grow, if at all, only in discrete increments.[27]

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Limits_to_Growth

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