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I am a mystic madman, a wandering wildman, scholar of esoterica, dilettante sadhu, dready-headed hippie (only have a few jata on the back of my head right now, though more be forming of this third set of knotted hair), gentle yogi, fierce foe of falsity. I was a preacher, but I renounced that. I was married, but she renounced me. I was a grad student at one of the top universities in the world on my way to becoming a professor, but I realized they taught lies there too. I am protector of souls, lover of mountains, smoker of herb, fond of hot springs, oceans and lakes and rivers and rain and sunshine, devotee of Devi.

Hindu Gods and Goddesses

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Retooling America: "Green" in Ten Years

In the current debate regarding clean and renewable energy versus dirty and war-prone fossil fuel extraction, and the obviously necessary transition from the former to the latter, I have heretofore stood somewhere between the extremes of the "business as usual" approach, and the "100% transition in ten years" approach, largely because I imagined such a radical transition as the latter would cause suffering due to harms done the economy by the means such a radical approach would imply. Perhaps this was intentions of ancestors or "conservative" consciousnesses grasping on to influence in my life, or vestiges of fears having been drilled into my head in recent trialsome times. It has just occurred to me, however, that it has been exactly such radical transitions in the recent history (100 years or so) of this nation's economy that have brought the economy back to "health" after times of hardship.

It was largely due to the radical policies of the "New Deal" that the Great Depression ended . Programs now taken for granted such as Social Security as well as various other radical economic policy shifts, followed by the nation's swift "retooling" to meet the challenges of Nazi and Japanese aggression indeed brought the economic prosperity of this nation very effectively back to better standards of living for the general populace.

Similarly, a radical shift towards an environmentally sound--"Green"--economy might be exactly what is necessary both to ensure the sustainability of our existence on this planet and to spur the economy to a proper and healthy mode of growth to stave off recession. After the New Deal had begun to turn the economy around and to alleviate economic suffering of average folks, the nation-wide mobilization of citizens for the common cause of opposing Nazi oppression and Japanese aggression helped to shift the economy to a level of prosperity comparable to that of the twenties. Similarly, if this nation is spurred to decisive action to make a radical shift towards environmentally sound economy and lifestyles by both discourse (i.e., "media coverage," etc., to encourage individual action), and officially sanctioned and enforced economic and industrial policies (legislation and willful action on the part of industry), then in fact such a radical shift will accomplish both goals of a healthy economy and a healthy relationship with the environment.

Conclusion: It's time to mobilize and act. "Green" within ten years!!!

1 comment:

Lisa said...

YES! I think this is indeed the way to boost our economy and help build a sustainable society and prevent a great deal of suffering in the future due to the dual economical/ecological (common root Oikos-meaning household in greek) collapse we're headed for if we don't change our ways. Nice post. Here are some books I've been reading that talk about how to make this happen: Deep Economy by Bill McKibben: http://www.billmckibben.com/deep-economy.html

Green Collar Economy by Van Jones:
http://vanjones.net/page.php?pageid=2&gclid=CPWLgoO0qpcCFQ0xawodxkzHjg