I've been gone a while, but this seems like a good venue for this. I have recently discovered a number of new blogs, with various labels, some "rationlist" and some "post-rationalist", and some I just don't know, but what they have in common is they go some distance to satisfying my appetite for nuance and complexity with respect to contemporary issues.
Today's example is a several-week-old article from the Archdruid report, which is an analysis of technological "progress" (scare-quotes because part of the point of the article is to problematize this term) in rather unconventional terms.
The claim is that technological innovations which qualify as "progress" are precisely those which externalize a greater part of the cost of their implementation and operation, compared to previous technologies. There's a secondary claim, which is that the adoption of these technologies is robust in a capitalist economy, because enthusiastic externalizers can out-compete unenthusiastic externalizers.
I confess I don't necessarily buy it. It's a good fit for manufacturing and services, where there's a uniform product and a competitive market. I have some difficulty seeing how the early Internet, clearly a form of "progress", fits the model, but I've only just started thinking it through.
But, it's wonderful grist for collapse enthusiasts. It provides a mechanism whereby technological capitalism consumes itself and destroys its host society even in the absence of resource constraints. No Malthusian horror show required, just irresponsible implementations of economies of scale exploiting and despoiling the land, air, and polity.
That alone is worth a link.