New Clear Vision

constructive commentary for the chronically farsighted

Archive for the ‘Peter Bergel’

Don’t Mourn, Organize!

September 03, 2012 By: NCVeditor Category: Ecology, Peter Bergel, Politics

Working Together to Address Threats Ignored by Dysfunctional Government

by Peter Bergel

In my email recently was a message from one of my favorite organizations, the League of Conservation Voters, that began: “We just won a major victory: The Obama administration has finalized new fuel efficiency and global warming pollution standards that will raise the average gas mileage on cars to 54.5 mpg by 2025. Simply put, this is the single biggest thing the United States government has ever done to reduce global warming pollution.” The League urged me to thank President Obama “for protecting our planet.”

I know I should not look a gift horse in the mouth, but I have to admit that my reaction was “really?”

Modest Achievement

This “biggest thing,” raises average mileage on cars by 2025 — 13 years from now. Obama will be long out of office by then and the auto industry will have plenty of time to work on chiseling that mileage figure down. Besides, why did it take Obama nearly 4 years to get around to this? And why is the mileage figure so low? (more…)

Moving the Paradigm

September 15, 2011 By: NCVeditor Category: Ecology, Economy, Peter Bergel

From Growth and Domination to Sustainability and Cooperation

by Peter Bergel

On Tuesday night a reported 100,000 Americans joined Starbucks CEO Howard Schultz for a national conversation about breaking the partisan gridlock in Washington, DC. It was another great example of the growing willingness of ordinary people to reclaim their power from those to whom they have delegated it, only to see it abused.

Schultz was a suitable leader for this conversation because he had recently organized CEOs from more than a hundred companies to halt contributions to U.S. political campaigns until DC office holders stop their political wrangling and behave in a financially responsible manner. He also encouraged those who joined him to spend their money to stimulate growth in their own industries. (more…)

Down, But Not Out

July 11, 2011 By: NCVeditor Category: Community, Culture, Ecology, Economy, Peter Bergel

What is to be Done?

by Peter Bergel

Recently my email brought two items on the same day which, when I put them together, seemed like a strong message for Independence Day — and beyond.

The first was a New York Times article (reprinted in The PeaceWorker on June 16) about how a British firm is preparing to bring appropriate technology to the U.S. to “do well by doing good” in the area of conserving energy. The second was the graph showing the one area where the U.S. really is number one.

I Have a Dream…

What if — I thought — after 9/11 we had decided to revenge ourselves not on Afghans and Iraqis who had done us no harm, but on Saudi Arabia, from which country the 9/11 attackers actually hailed? What if — assuming you don’t buy the “capture the terrorists” justification for the U.S. attacks on Afghanistan and Iraq — we had decided to choose a different tool than war to defend our energy supply?

We could have spent some portion of the difference between the 2001 military budget of approximately $350 billion annually and today’s military budget of $700+ billion on developing a domestic green energy supply. (more…)

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