Sustainability Woes

Georges van Hoegaerden
Georges van Hoegaerden
Founder, Author, and Managing Director of methodEVA.

Concerned about the plight of humanity and the wasted time, money, and opportunity by organizations, so-called think tanks, selling snake-oil to lame-duck governments, I just reviewed a report published in 2001 from the organization for economic co-operation and development (OECD) titled Strategies for Sustainable Development: guidance for development and cooperation. A report with striking similarities to their 2020 reports.

Almost thirty years of talking and consensus-building around sustainability have not yielded systemically improved regenerative excellence of all humanity, quite the opposite; the world has gotten more starkly divided in have and have-nots of stifling oligarchies incompatible with nature. And now, word on the street is, the sustainability goals will not be achieved until 2090.

Doom Multiplexed

A sad state of affairs and proof of how carefully spun but flawed economic theories, in violation of nature’s principles, are doomed. Dually doomed because a study of hindsight does not yield foresight to break the norm. Triply doomed because the authoritarian rule of nature cannot be supported with elective, non-authoritarian, participation. Quadruply doomed because sustainability is an evolutionary oxymoron, nonexistent anywhere in the universe, but in academia’s minds. Quintuply doomed because the whitewashing of undesirable consequences does not eradicate the cause.

Nature has no patience for manmade nonsense. And the people of the OECD and U.N. member states deserve better leadership and advice. The kind of advice that delivers the change nature, not the priests of economics, demands from us.

Paper Rhetoric

In the report, the reported seven International Development Goals have now turned into fourteen Sustainable Development Goals by the United Nations. Progress of a kind. While I reduce the goal of humanity to a single one.

The goals specifically call for the “establishment of sustainable development strategies by 2005″, all requiring “deep structural changes, relating to the economy, society, and politics” as instigated by poverty reduction strategy papers (PRSPs); the Comprehensive Development Framework (CDF); the National Visions and the National Action Plans. None of the fluffy titles produced results to write home about.

Wrong Compass

In simple terms, OECD explains, “sustainable development means integrating the economic, social and environmental objectives of society, in order to maximise human well-being in the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their needs.”

They could not be more wrong. The evolution of humanity is not predicated on the solipsism of human wants masquerading as needs. Wealth, for example, is a want, not a need as recognized by nature.

Humanity must simply adhere to nature’s gameplay, and leave the convulsions of economists, stuck in stale, outdated, and empirically disproven dogmas behind.

Shame On You

Just like in science, no theory should be implemented before it has delivered its proof in nature. And the U.N. and OECD have yet to deliver a theory aligned with nature’s principles that we can turn into systems of regenerative success.

The people in those organizations should be ashamed of themselves, but no more than the leaders of countries buying into their spiel.

Stop selling and buying the dog food that does not improve humanity.

The sign of an intelligent nation is its willingness and ability to reinvent itself, upstream. Let’s inspire the world with new rigors of excellence we first and successfully apply to ourselves.

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