Congress has left climate action to the states by default and some states are taking action. If the Democrats can gain control of the presidency again the new president could do some actions with executive orders as Obama did. There are so many states that produce fossil fuels that it is difficult for Congress to act on climate change. And with all the fracking for natural gas and oil going on there are now more states in this category than ever.
Relying on the arsonist to put out the fire… what a brilliant idea:
“You wouldn’t always know it, but it went up every year I was president. That whole, suddenly America’s like the biggest oil producer and the biggest gas — that was me, people," Obama said.
USA Today is so right. Now, is the end of functioning human civilization and the only habitable planet really worth tackling? Is it a big political risk to try to stop the end of the world as we know it? Let’s consult polls, cause surely any logical political system would actually debate this, right? God fucking forbid that USA Today instead ask why a political system doesn’t prioritize such a thing, critically analyzing how we got here, who is making sure we don’t address this issue and why. Let’s also pretend too that if the political system doesn’t take into account the non market nature of many environmental impacts, if the economic system doesn’t price those things, that those things don’t exist. Any attempt at taking those actual costs into account isn’t creating a cost that doesn’t exist, and not taking those costs into account doesn’t make them go away. We either take them into account, because they exist, or it all comes down. Mr. Market is missing lots of information and is a key driver in the environmental crisis.
Let’s also not think critically about how we actually get those that don’t recognize the importance of this to actually do so, and to change minds. Let’s just look at some data showing it may be risky, and run from the hills, as any brave group of people would do.
Once again, spot on.
Big Picture from JR: The actions (or lack of) from our political system, and the values of our economic system fail people, and life on Earth.
Maybe we should make a correction?
Who are “we?” --not those driving either the political or economic systems drawing each of us around like puppets on strings.
Are the hearts and minds—but especially the hearts—of the mass of Americans ready to accept what must appear at first to be radical losses of individual liberty in order to “save the planet”?
That would seem to be the real question here. For without such readiness, any political effort to impose improved ecological behavior will ultimately fail.
So far, I see little evidence that Americans are ready to accept further curtailment of their individual liberties by the State in order to address climate change.
I see little evidence that Americans are ready to move to very different ways of being and doing here on the basis of climate change. I think most of us know, deep within, that the superficial changes entailed in a Green New Deal are utterly insufficient to address this profound and immediate phenomenon.
I think we all know, deep within, that we will be required to live with considerably LESS STUFF—to live a life much less focused on material consumption and much more focused on sharing, cooperating and co-creating from within subtler aspects of our being.
While it is evident that many, if not most, people would be happier if life did move to that veryndifferent basis, the movement can only happen from within. Are most Americans suggesting, by their behaviors, that they wish to focus on sharing, cooperating, and co-creating? It doesn’t look like it to me.
Can the State coerce people into wanting what they are not prepared to want? I see no evidence that this is so.
Is the State as we know it nimble, flexible, and creative enough to assist people in developing so that they experience the changes in their habitual modes of being and doing as an opportunity, rather than a further incursion in their liberties? No. The State as we know it is clumsy, rigid, formulaic, and punitive.
Yes, it would be far better if the hearts of Americans were prepared to experience a very different mode of living not as a reduction in their liberties, but rather, as a manifestation of their True freedom and power.
In that case, no political move by the State to change ecological behaviors would be necessary; people would spontaneously begin adopting different modes of life regardless of the State’s action.
In that case, over time, the State would be compelled to either disappear or change into a form more appropriate to its only conceivably legitimate purpose—to manifest the collective soul of the people, and to facilitate the fulfillment of what that soul sees as necessary.
But the State as we know it today is not like that. The State as we know it exists only for the sake of existing; it serves itself and “cares” for the interests of the people only insofar as the appearance of doing so is necessary to its self-perpetuation. It has not yet developed a stable or reliable conscience; still less has it matured into soul!
With no True change in the inner orientation of the masses of people, and no corresponding change in the Nature of the State, no action to address climate change can be sincere and effective.
At this point, people usually start saying, “Well, but then what should we do? We have to do something!”
Yes, we do. And it is perhaps inevitable that what we do will not be anything Truly different, but only a reiteration of our species’ old cycles, leading—in a more or less direct and swift fashion—to our increasing immiseration and ultimate extinction.
But there is still another possibility. The possibility that the raging inferno of Self-inquiry sparked by the immediate and inescapable threat of our extinction could act on us as physical fire acts on certain seeds. It could catalyze the release of the code for new life from inside us, enabling us to go forward in a very different way.
I’m working and praying for that outcome every day.
But pretending that the remedy for our current troubles may be found in any actions of the State as we know it is a harmful falsehood. It distracts us and extracts our attentional energy from the site from which True change might come now.
We have very little time left to choose. Do we want to keep choosing what we know doesn’t work?