By Dan Shapley
"Deep Economy: The Wealth of Communities and the Durable Future" is Bill McKibben's statement on the state of consumer culture, and his prescription for its ailments. In a nutshell: Go local. But it goes much deeper than that. The philosophical movement toward a smaller, community-centric view of life and commerce is nothing new. The counter current has been present as society in general has found technology, consumer goods and all their attendants preferable. But with concerns about global warming highlighting the pace at which Americans are consuming natural resources -- many times the average worldwide rate -- a new sustainability mantra is overtaking the most mainstream of swimmers in the cultural current. Chambers of commerce, government bureaucrats, families and individuals are looking for ways to make smaller workable. McKibben's voice, long a must-read among environmentalists, may have a new and growing audience, according to a story in the May 29 Christian Science Monitor.