THE BIG SHIFT: RETHINKING MONEY, TAX, WELFARE AND GOVERNANCE FOR THE NEXT ECONOMIC SYSTEM, by Deirdre Kent.
Congratulations Deirdre for having the courage to write this book and the brainpower to offer solutions to complex, scary systems, in lay-person language. Phew; I think I scared myself writing that down!
When I picked up SHIFT I began the read with some scepticism. There was shock, horror, guffaws, some hand-wringery (to do with a certain person’s alt-right agenda) and, much following up on the excellent references. However I ended the book feeling a lot more hopeful about the future, and motivated to discuss the ideas put forward in it with friends and family.
Discussing the ideas is the central purpose of the book as Deirdre has thrown us a challenge – a challenge to RETHINK the notion of economy. She’s asking:
“Hey! You there! Call yourself a Planet Sharer?
Okay – then how can we really share the Planet? Well here’s my suggestion –
my RETHINK for a truly Planet Sharing future.
Read, discuss, and please forward to others”.
Deirdre concedes she doesn’t have all the answers to achieve her vision of a peaceful, pro-nature, planet-sharing economy, but she urges us all to at least acknowledge economic systems need to change and to start talking about how that change can happen.
Talking about the ideas in SHIFT takes economic discourse out of lecture rooms and into our dining rooms. And in these days of uncertainty, and the hopelessness felt by many people, SHIFT is a much needed tool for hopeful change.
Review by Fliss Butcher, May 2017.
Fliss co-founded and ran Dunedin Sustainable Business Network for 6 years during the early 2000’s. From 2006 to 2013 she was a Dunedin City Councillor, where she focussed on local government’s role in environmental and social issues and was instrumental in getting nature friendly policy at the heart of DCC’s strategic direction. Currently she works as a Heritage Researcher.