book review | Whole Earth Discipline

September 23, 2009

Source: Wired — | Douglas McGray

“Stewart Brand: Save the Slums” | In his new book Whole Earth Discipline, Stewart Brand defends genetic engineering, nuclear power, and other longtime nemeses of the green left as good for the planet.

Some people see a squatter city in Nigeria or India and the desperation overwhelms them: rickety shelters, little kids working or begging, filthy water and air. Stewart Brand sees the same places and he’s encouraged. The pioneering environmentalist, technology thinker, and founder of the Whole Earth Catalog has written a new manifesto, Whole Earth Discipline, in which he defends genetic engineering, nuclear power, and other longtime nemeses of the green left as good for the planet.

Brand also makes a counterintuitive case that the booming slums and squatter cities in and around Mumbai, Nairobi, and Rio de Janeiro are net positives for poor people and the environment. Wired asked him to elaborate. [...]