Tragedy of the Commons

Years ago some Libertarian friends introduced me to the idea of the Tragedy of the Commons. I wasn’t aware until now that this idea was old but was popularized by a paper from 1968. As dogma, it really is questionable, since common resources in societies have existed as long a societies themselves. Yet Tragedy of the Commons became a sort of rallying cry for privitazition of public resources, at least in post-war America. I only recently became aware of the counterpoint to this idea, a Nobel Prize winning work by Ostrom, which gets much less attention. An article from Aeon which focuses on game preserves in Africa and how groups organize to conserve and share reaources.

The miracle of the commons

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