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In an approximate way, the logic of commons has been understood for a long time, perhaps since the discovery of agriculture or the invention of private property in real estate.
In a finite world this means that the per capita share of the world's goods must steadily decrease.
However, I think the major opposition to ecology has deeper roots than mere economics; ecology threatens widely held values so fundamental that they must be called religious.
Fundamentalists are panicked by the apparent disintegration of the family, the disappearance of certainty and the decay of morality. Fear leads them to ask, if we cannot trust the Bible, what can we trust?
Freedom in a commons brings ruin to all.
Education can counteract the natural tendency to do the wrong thing, but the inexorable succession of generations requires that the basis for this knowledge be constantly refreshed.
Continuity is at the heart of conservatism: ecology serves that heart.
But it is no good using the tongs of reason to pull the Fundamentalists' chestnuts out of the fire of contradiction. Their real troubles lie elsewhere.
But as population became denser, the natural chemical and biological recycling processes became overloaded, calling for a redefinition of property rights.
An attack on values is inevitably seen as an act of subversion.
A technical solution may be defined as one that requires a change only in the techniques of the natural sciences, demanding little or nothing in the way of change in human values or ideas of morality.
A finite world can support only a finite population; therefore, population growth must eventually equal zero.
A coldly rationalist individualist can deny that he has any obligation to make sacrifices for the future.
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