Friday, September 9, 2011

Short-Sighted

I rarely delve into politics, mostly because I can't stand politicians and the fact that we are so limited in our choices. Yes, I vote, so I feel I can complain ;-). Classes are in full swing for me and it is hard to stay optimistic. Most of you know I am going back to school for a Masters in Sustainability (I hope to work with religious institutions in helping them and their congregants "go green"). Last nights class really delved into where the earth is going if we continue on our destructive, consumerist path. What was most frustrating was to see how the US and China are the largest polluters, and to learn that CHINA is now taking more steps to sustainability then we are!!! It is embarrassing the completely self-centered focus that is prevalent here. Of course, not everyone is like that and there are many people doing amazing things to help the environment, but we are so behind in getting policies passed that it is hard to consider us a developed country. The pull that special interests/big business has is incredible. Short-term gains continually trump long-term benefits. Don't these people care about the future? The future that will contain their kids and grandkids? I just don't understand. The OECD reports that with just the cost of 1% of the GDP for 2030, we could reverse the effect of much of our negligence. It just makes me sick. Our professor tried to keep it hopeful in that we can affect change and become leaders, but when you see how many people have tried to lead the charge and failed, it is disheartening. I will try, and I know my classmates and many others will try, but how do you convince lobbiest, special interests, politicians, business men/women, stakeholders that a little cost now will create great benefits for the future? It feels like they only care about themselves and how much money they make.

2 comments:

Bill Baar said...

Don't these people care about the future?

Did you care to ask?

plaidshoes said...

The ones that I have asked have conveyed to me that business interests are the foundation of the economy, thus providing jobs and a future. Despite explaining how moving towards a green economy (even with the additional initial costs) can be more beneficial, they are unwilling to look past the next quarters returns. It is very frustrating. They feel that human ingenuity will save the day or choose to believe bad science because it would require to much radical change. This coming from friends and family.