Roughly a third of the material in this second edition is new, or has been completely revised to bring it up to date. Douthwaite shows how: Well-informed politicians are no longer promising that economic growth will bring ordinary people significant benefits. Growth is now seen as a regrettable necessity-something which is needed to avoid an economic collapse. Continued economic growth is causing the British and US economies to run backwards and destroy more resources than they are creating on a sustainable basis. Growth is not required for the majority of people to live well even in very poor countries. Since 1990, the national income of Ireland has grown by 50%. Unfortunately, the Irish suicide rate increased by 64% in the same period. The Growth Illusion refutes Adam Smith's belief that an 'invisible hand' ensures that self-interest serves the common good. Accordingly, it suggests that the nations of the world should extricate themselves from a global system which must grow continually if it is not to collapse, and build themselves stable, sustainable economies instead.