weak and fearful: why environmentalism fails

eco critique

Sheesh, I've gotten so frustrated in recent months while touting our fundamental need for a new way of thinking about sustainability. (See here, here, and here, for example.)

Now, I think I get why environmentalist friends give me blank stares…perhaps they can't see that the way we think about ‘environmental problems’ is part of the problem.

Curtis White has found a way to write about the mythical 'idols' of American culture that also drive environmentalism off its intended track (via orion mag).

There's so much worth chewing on in 'The Idols of Environmentalism' that I'll just direct you to it and excerpt some of White's jewels below.

Perhaps this can help us understand why sustainability is not environmentalism warmed-over.

Oh, and, this is just Part One. Orion will publish Part Two next month.

Here ya go, straight from this Midwestern lit profs mouth:

I especially like White's conclusion, which is also the lead paragraph in this fine essay:

"Environmental destruction proceeds apace in spite of all the warnings, the good science, the 501(c)3 organizations with their memberships in the millions, the poll results, and the martyrs perched high in the branches of sequoias or shot dead in the Amazon. This is so not because of a power, a strength out there that we must resist. It is because we are weak and fearful. Only a weak and fearful society could invest so much desperate energy in protecting activities that are the equivalent of suicide."

Stay tuned for Part Two.

Are we having fun, yet?

Published by Ken on March 25th, 2007 tagged Systems Thinking

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