Edwin G. Dolan
|The fundamental principle
on which this strategy is built may be expressed in a
simple sloganThere Ain't No Such Thing As A Free
Lunch, the "TANSTAAFL principle," for short.
The TANSTAAFL principle is closely related to the
fundamental theorem of ecological economics, that
everything depends on everything else. Everything
worthwhile has a cost. Whenever you think you are getting
something for nothing, look againsomeone,
somewhere, somehow is paying for it. Behind every free
lunch there is a hidden cost to be accounted for.
The task of ecological economics is to figure out how to restructure the economic system so that these hidden costs will be brought out into the open, with the ultimate aim that no one who benefits from the use of the environment will be able to escape without paying in full. The rest of this book is devoted to working out specific applications of this general strategy in order to deal with specific problems.
The Courage to Create, reprinted 1994
|I may have worked at my
desk morning after morning trying to find a way to
express some important idea. When my "insight"
suddenly breaks throughwhich may happen when I am
chopping wood in the afternoonI experience a
strange lightness in my step as though a great load were
taken off my shoulders, a sense of joy on a deeper level
that continues without any relation whatever to the
mundane tasks that I may be performing at the time. It
cannot be just that the problem at hand has been
answeredthat generally brings only a sense of
relief. What is the source of this curious pleasure?
I propose that it is the experience of this-is-the-way-things-are-meant-to-be. If only for that moment, we participate in the myth of creation. Order comes out of disorder, form out of chaos, as it did in the creation of the universe. The sense of joy comes from our participation, no matter how slight, in being as such. The paradox is that at that moment we also experience more vividly our own limitations. We discover the "amor fati" that Nietzsche writes aboutthe love of one's fate. No wonder it gives a sense of ecstasy!
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