A reckoning is inevitable. It will come one of two ways. Soon, as an act of collective awakening, or too late.
It will involve a fundamental shift in our relationships, with each other and with the planet.

Saturday, May 19, 2012

Bill Bradley's Blind Spot

I was engaged by Scott Shafer's interview with Bill Bradley on KQED. I thought the digressions onto hoops and Trayvon Martin were unnecessary and distracting. It was very good to get caught up with his thinking. I have recognized and respected his voice since he served as Senator. I agree with most of his take and will buy his book.

I continue to be appalled however, and it happens all too regularly, to hear such interviews go down without a single mention from either party on Global Warming and the broader Global Eco-Crisis. For sure the paralysis in government, the economy, and international politics are important. But if anyone listens to the scientists - does Scott? - does Bill? - the Global Environmental Crisis is soon going to overtake all three of those issues and others, in urgency, in its impact on state, national and international politics and most extremely on the national and global economies. But, without drastic action, say in the coming decade, by the time the crisis pops up on the public’s radar, it will be too late to do anything meaningful.

Extreme weather continues to increase exponentially. Droughts and floods and fires place ever increasing demands on emergency services and will continue to upset the stability of agriculture globally. Supplies of fresh water will continue to diminish. The oceans are already in a crisis state and large sections of the oceans will start to die off. Fisheries are already depleted. Population will continue to spiral to 9 or 10 billion. Only in a few countries in N. Europe, and in a few other isolated areas around the world do we see anyone talking about or beginning to deal with this accelerating emergency.

The United States has lead the world down the path of war, waste, exploitation and eco-destruction, without the slightest nod to unintended consequences or a long term plan. It is our moral and pragmatic responsibility to admit the depth and breadth of our mismanagement and poor stewardship, and take a lead in reforming the global economy on a model of sustainability and economic justice. Before we are forced to follow.

It is the duty of journalists like Scott Shafer and writers and thinkers like Bill Bradley to - at the very least - factor the Eco-Crisis into your conversations. The corporate “press” in the U.S. has done an abysmally bad job at cutting through the denial and delay. What is the explanation for YOUR denial? Do you two think your elite status will protect you? It is deeply disheartening to listen to another hour of experts ignoring the most serious crisis mankind has ever faced.

There is a deep structural relationship between politics, economics, the information media and the Eco-Crisis. Do you not see it?