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Sustainability 1: The Commons

Original post made by Tom Cushing, Danville, on Apr 4, 2013

Picture in your mind’s eye a thriving medieval farm village. Each household owns its personal plot of land for tilling, and there’s a large common area – The Commons – on which all may graze their sheep. Life is good until one enterprising shepherd decides to raise more sheep. Why not? The Commons is free, after all, and no one will notice a few more ruminants munching away.

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Comments (3)

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Posted by Dave
a resident of Danville
on Apr 8, 2013 at 5:26 pm

And now - partly as a result of generational turnover in corporate leadership, and partly because it make good competitive business sense (especially in a regulated business environment), corporations are becoming leaders in sustainability -- hiring Chief Sustainability Officers, and instituting changes at the board- and senior management levels.


Like this comment
Posted by Lance
a resident of Alamo
on Apr 16, 2013 at 10:43 pm

Egads, my law classes contained less fluff than the digits above.


Like this comment
Posted by Tom Cushing
a resident of Alamo
on Apr 17, 2013 at 8:59 am

The Tragedy of The Commons: "On 13 December 1968, the late Garrett Hardin of Stanford University published an essay in Science magazine that was destined to become one of the journal's most requested articles in the subsequent 35 years." Web Link

Re: externalities, from Milton Friedman's last interview:

Friedman: ... Free markets work best when the transaction between two individuals affects only those individuals. But that isn't the fact. The fact is that, most often, a transaction between you and me affects a third party. That is the source of all problems for government. That is the source of all pollution problems, of the inequality problem. ... Web Link

If that's your fluff, I'm honored that you read my humble blog.


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