Reason Enough to Hope: America and the World of the Twenty-first Century (MIT Press)

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9780262519342: Reason Enough to Hope: America and the World of the Twenty-first Century (MIT Press)
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In this "blue-sky" effort to rethink humanity's basic challenges, Philip Morrison and Kosta Tsipis--both eminent scientists with deep expertise in arms control issues--sketch the broad outlines for a global approach to the problems of security and development. Their goal is to set priorities for feasible action, and their focus is threefold: war and particularly the continuing dangers of nuclear weapons, population and the promotion of increased levels of human well-being, and the threat of environmental degradation.Although their topics are global, the authors focus on the actions of the United States. In their discussion of nuclear options, for example, they argue that reducing American military expenditures can be a catalyst for lowering the world's nuclear risk, establishing a policy of "common security" in response to conventional war, and freeing resources that will allow substantial steps toward "common development." In their discussion of human needs, the authors emphasize the fact that the rate of annual growth in the world's population peaked between 1967 and 1970 and has declined steadily ever since; we can therefore now project what the near steady-state level might be. This topping off of population growth should give us a new baseline from which to address both development and environmental issues.

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About the Author:

Philip Morrison is Institute Professor Emeritus at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Kosta Tsipis is retired Director of the Program in Science and Technology for International Security of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.

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Painting on a broad canvas, Morrison and Tsipis develop a picture of what global conditions might be in the coming decades. Their book is about "what is possible and hopeful" in human affairs. They treat the issues of war and peace, the growing human population, the need for economic development to reduce mass poverty, and the price of continued growth in its effects on the global environment. Three major perils that lie ahead, the authors say, can be mitigated by intelligent action. The first is large-scale war; the intelligent action is to build a "system of Common Security among nations," meanwhile gaining firm control over all nuclear weapons and reducing military budgets below some 2 percent of gross domestic product. The second peril is "the unmet daily needs of billions of people," for which the response is "Common Development," financed in large part by the savings in military expenditures. The third is degradation of the global environment; the response is to "move toward a better and fairer regime of frugality and efficiency" that would make it possible to "confront under global consensus the environmental problems whose advent and whose remedy must be found on still grander a scale." In sum: "The optimistic message of this book stands on a simple recognition. The fundamental parameters governing the outlook for humanity's future in terms of energy, war, water, food, and population are hopeful."

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9780262133449: Reason Enough to Hope: America and the World of the Twenty-first Century

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ISBN 10:  026213344X ISBN 13:  9780262133449
Publisher: The MIT Press, 1998
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Morrison, Philip/ Tsipis, Kosta
Published by Mit Pr (1998)
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Book Description Mit Pr, 1998. Paperback. Condition: Brand New. 228 pages. 9.10x6.10x0.90 inches. In Stock. Seller Inventory # zk0262519348

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