3How We Will Produce and How We Will Consume


In the good old days, it was easy: we consumed what we produced. Even the farmhouse and the furniture were most often built by the farmer’s family and employees, with the neighbors’ help. Most of the economic growth since that time can be explained by just three trends:

1. Division of labor and specialization. Most of us are specialists; we are educated to do one job, whether it be accounting or sales, and we know next to nothing about, say, a construction worker’s job. It would be a disaster if we switched jobs.

2. Globalization. Thanks to globalization, the specialization today is worldwide. The value chain from producer to consumer has become very ...

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