“It’s the Economy, Stupid!” and the Environment

Environmental Ethics 37 (4):465-484 (2015)


The current economic/political system, neoliberalism, has touched every aspect of life globally. The doctrine of neoliberalism consists of three central propositions, that the market is real and part of the natural universal law; that unlimited economic growth is both possible and even desirable; and that human nature is coincident with market values and based solely on self-interest. All three of these propositions are seriously flawed and have caused immense human suffering and staggering environmental destruction. This paper is a reminder of the failures of neoliberal policy and an appeal for change to a new institutional arrangement in which development trumps economic growth. This position is in contrast to Francis Fukuyama’s end-of-history thesis. He alleges there are no economic/political ideologies to compete with neoliberalism, the “TINA principle: There Is No Alternative”: the West has won. It is time to reintroduce Henry David Thoreau’s, and to a lesser extent, Adam Smith’s moral economies. Both have encourgaging insights, often overlooked by current academic economists, which could figure prominently in the conception of a new economy.

Download options


External links

Setup an account with your affiliations in order to access resources via your University's proxy server

Through your library


Added to PP

105 (#114,397)

6 months
15 (#54,670)

Historical graph of downloads
How can I increase my downloads?

Author's Profile

Robert Chapman
Pace University

References found in this work

No references found.

Add more references

Citations of this work

No citations found.

Add more citations

Similar books and articles

It's the Economy, Stupid.Rudy Giuliani & Wall Street - 2005 - Journal of Libertarian Studies 19 (4):19-36.
Farming Made Her Stupid.Lisa Heldke - 2006 - Hypatia 21 (3):151 - 165.
Stupid is as Stupid Does.Nicholas Fearn - 2004 - The Philosophers' Magazine 27 (27):58-58.
The Biology of Stupidity: Genetics, Eugenics and Mental Deficiency in the Inter-War Years.David Barker - 1989 - British Journal for the History of Science 22 (3):347-375.
The Nature and Institutional Structure of the New Economy-In the View of Marxism Economics.Gang Liu - 2009 - Nankai University (Philosophy and Social Sciences) 2:84-93.
Nichtverfügbare Gemeingüter.Hans Lenk & Matthias Maring - 2001 - Kriterion - Journal of Philosophy 14 (1):3-18.