From Greed to Green: Exploring Resourceism as an Ethical Socio-economic Alternative


''In contemporary society, the pervasive influence of money often raises questions about its impact on morality and sustainability. The pursuit of wealth, often at the expense of ethical considerations, has led to a variety of societal issues.''

Michael Corthell 

This article explores the corrupting influence of money and proposes a solution in the form of resourceism—a resource-based economy. By examining the drawbacks of capitalism and other money-based socio-economic systems, we can better understand the need for alternative approaches.

The Corrupting Influence of Money

  1. Power Imbalance and Corruption: The accumulation of wealth often translates into significant power, influencing political decisions and perpetuating corruption within societal structures. The link between money and power can undermine the democratic principles that form the foundation of a just society.

  2. Materialism Over Values In a money-driven society, there is a risk of prioritizing material gain over ethical considerations. This can lead to a culture where personal and corporate interests take precedence over broader societal well-being and ethical standards.

  3. Social Inequity The unequal distribution of wealth contributes to social disparities, fostering resentment and division. Such disparities may drive corrupt practices as individuals or institutions seek to protect or enhance their financial advantages, exacerbating societal tensions.

  4. Lack of Regulation Inadequate regulatory frameworks and oversight create environments where corruption can flourish. The absence of robust checks and balances allows individuals to exploit financial systems for personal gain, eroding trust in institutions.

  5. Consumerism Culture Societal emphasis on consumerism and the pursuit of material success can lead to a mindset where the accumulation of wealth is prioritized over ethical considerations. This cultural shift perpetuates unsustainable consumption patterns and environmentally harmful practices.

Resourceism as an Alternative

Resourceism, or a resource-based economy (RBE), presents an alternative paradigm that seeks to address the ethical and environmental challenges posed by traditional monetary systems. In an RBE, the focus shifts from currency and profit to the intelligent management of Earth's resources for the benefit of all.

  1. Eliminating Wealth Disparities: Resourceism aims to eliminate the disparities associated with wealth accumulation by prioritizing equitable access to resources. In such a system, the focus is on meeting the needs of the global population rather than accumulating personal fortunes.

  2. Environmental Sustainability: Unlike capitalism, which often exploits resources for profit, an RBE emphasizes sustainable practices. By considering the environmental impact of resource extraction and consumption, an RBE promotes a harmonious relationship between humanity and the planet.

  3. Collaborative Decision-Making: Resourceism encourages collaborative decision-making processes that involve experts, scientists, and the global community. This approach minimizes the risk of corruption and ensures that decisions are made in the best interests of the entire population.

  4. Technology and Innovation: Embracing technological advancements, an RBE leverages innovation to enhance efficiency and sustainability. This contrasts with the often stagnant nature of capitalist systems that may resist change due to entrenched interests.

Comparing Resourceism to Capitalism

  1. Morality and Ethics: Resourceism places a higher value on ethical considerations by design, as its core principles prioritize the well-being of individuals and the planet over individual wealth accumulation. Capitalism, driven by profit motives, may inadvertently foster unethical practices in the pursuit of financial gain.

  2. Sustainability: Capitalism's focus on perpetual growth and consumption often leads to environmental degradation. Resourceism, on the other hand, centers on sustainable resource management, recognizing the finite nature of Earth's resources.

  3. Wealth Distribution: While capitalism tends to concentrate wealth in the hands of a few, resourceism aims for equitable distribution, ensuring that everyone has access to the essentials for a dignified life.


In reconsidering the role of money in our civilization, resourceism emerges as a compelling alternative to traditional capitalist systems. By shifting the focus from wealth accumulation to resource management, resourceism offers a pathway to a more ethical, sustainable, and equitable future. Exploring and implementing such alternatives is crucial for addressing the systemic issues associated with the corrupting influence of money.


  1. The Zeitgeist Movement
  2. The Venus Project
  3. Resource-Based Economy Explained
  4. TED Talk: The Venus Project - Beyond Politics, Poverty, and War
  5. World Economic Forum - The Great Reset