Sunday, May 31, 2015

Climate change, I don't know.

      Climate Change denialism, is what we on the left have coined as the position taken by our country-persons on the right. This vital issue should not be another part of the right-left political split in the U.S. political cycle, but it is and it will only intensify. The split will intensify as the right-left factions push against one another, and as the detrimental affects of our changing planet and home intensify.

     We have to acknowledge what is behind our massive political divide. Money and power is driving our greatest divisions. For this reason we cannot remain within the simplistic left-right divide. The U.S. political spectrum is not as wide as we tend to think it is. The first shared space in the two party system Venn-diagram includes massive amounts of money. Money that translates into kick backs to congress-persons, bonuses for CEO's, and even pay checks for working class folks like you and I.

      What is behind our inability to change in ways that coincide with the needs of the environment, and the health of the people? Upton Sinclair once wrote "It is difficult to get a man to understand something when his salary depends upon his not understanding it." The current state of our economy is at war with the environment. Our salaries are at war with the environment. The steps needed to curb climate change will alter what we value, who rules, who serves and how we live our daily lives.

     Our lives will be altered dramatically, because the solution to climate change is found in the reduction of how much we consume of everything. This solution blends into our interdependent political and economic sphere because these factions claim the answer to all of our problems economic growth. Economic growth is based primarily on increased consumption. Increased consumption equates to dismissing the reality of climate change and doubling down on policies and platforms that have been in place since the end of WW2.

     The consumer society fuels approximately seventy percent of the United states economy. Without a complete overhaul of our society, and the disentanglement of our economic and political spheres the move towards action will be stifled by business as usual. Business as usual is locked into a rat race machine. A machine we lost control of a long time ago. The interests of the few, and the false choices presented to the many have a corrupting influence that only gets worse. This is the machine we need to stop nurturing with fossil fuels. We cannot have capitalism, the current political economy, and our rampant and all encompassing consumer society without burning copious amounts of fossil fuels. It should be obvious what the solutions consist of.

     We can see that the corruption and loss of our ability to choose outside of a very narrow spectrum has infiltrated our body politic and media outlets. The time for unity is nigh. Our actions will have to come from outside of the narrow spheres of choices that have dominated for too long.

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