Meadowlark Economics: Sustainability, the Economy and the Environment


Is it possible for the economy and the environment to survive and thrive in harmony?

“Yes,” says Professor James Eggert in his new book, “Greenspan’s Anguish (Thoreau as Economic Prophet and Other Essays).”

“Ecology and economics have the same prefix, eco-, from the Greek oikos, which literally means ‘household.’ The original definition of economics therefore implied a careful stewardship of household resources, whereas ecology compels us to try to understand and appreciate the interrelationships within nature’s ‘household.’ I believe these two households are becoming more interdependent and their futures more and more intimately linked. When we fail to calculate ecological values or see the connections, we pave the way for losses that are unintended and unwanted,” Professor Eggert writes in his essay, “Meadowlark Economics.”

“Greenspan’s Anguish” contains 19 essays that explore the relationship between the economy and the environment, sustainability and our relationship to the universe.

In addition to “Meadowlark Economics,” which examines the value of the meadowlark, both as a symbol for what has gone wrong with our economy and as a symbol of what is essential to our existence, the book includes “Thoreau as Economic Prophet,” “Darwin’s Finches and Ford’s Mustangs,” “Then the Sun Came Up,” “Craftsmanship and Salvation,” and “The Coming Repair Age.”

“The author is an economist – but not one devoted to the prevailing theology of his profession. Economists mostly work with the dedication of beavers toward the great goal of More… now comes James Eggert, one of a small school of economists who has begun to think outside of the box… there are delightful discussions of meadowlarks, of the nature of capitalism, of ‘economist’ Henry David Thoreau, of craftsmanship and high jumping, of topsoil and the art of repair and many other things that constitute a joyful and complete life.” (From the Foreword by Bill McKibben).

“The author is a fine teacher of economics whose vision transcends his chosen discipline. This book will touch even those readers far removed from the dismal science.” (Alfred L. Malabre Jr. – former economics editor of “The Wall Street Journal”).

James Eggert is a writer and emeritus faculty member of the University of Wisconsin – Stout where he taught undergraduate students for 33 years. He also is the author of “What is Economics (fourth edition),” “Invitation to Economics,” “Low-Cost Earth Shelters,” “The Wonder of the Tao,” and “Meadowlark Economics.”

“Greenspan’s Anguish” (copyright 2013; Green Dragon Books) is available through most local bookstores or at online booksellers, including Amazon, Barnes and Noble, Books-A-Million, Powell’s Books, Green Dragon Books.


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