Come Out of Your Cave and See

Talking about the current ecological/political situation between swimming at the beach, my friend suddenly told me to say no more in a loud,  cranky voice. I felt personally rejected but later recognized that it was not me she was rejecting but the information I proposed. I was telling her something she wasn’t ready to consider. She lives in a world of certain ideas like in a cave with opaque walls.  Her need to sustain a detached comfort, to dismiss her anxious feelings due to her  presumed inability to do anything about it, puts limits on her ability to consider.

Her main newspaper’s masthead says: “All the news that’s fit to print.” This motto implies a greased surface on which facts slide away from coverage. What if it’s Victorian principles say that certain news isn’t fit? Fit for whom? What if its corporate funding determines what to call improper?

If the stated choice is only between A and B, both of them destructive, we need a third way; and a fourth and more. How did we ever get into having two parties instead of individuals running for office, into a winner take all system which is totally undemocratic? Most party members get their running again for office expenses met by corporations whose needs they will represent. It is a choose the lesser of the evils way of life for voters. This A or B choice is all about giving up a clearly good choice, a strange kind of comfort for a voter derived from limitation.

It takes ego strength to recognize the coming downfall of civilization and the end of life itself due to the extractive behavior which A and B propose. Obama is looking for new places in the ocean to dig for oil. He heralds fracking natural gas to makes us less dependent on Arab oil. But fracking poisons the water table and causes earthquakes. Oil and gas and coal and nuclear set the world on fire. What binds him to these choices?  Does he not know the mounting research which screams disaster? Do we let our elected official’s smiling face and reassuring words put our minds to sleep?

Our congress votes where corporate bribes lead it. Corporations say they are making  changes to avoid climate catastrophe. Behind this hardly significant enactment, they do the same destructive acts. We need to become strong enough to know what is happening in order to make good choices. We need to leave the mental cave of unknowing. Fracked gas and oil and coal and nuclear can be replaced by windmills and solar collectors including solar windows and environmental design and more are coming. We, the voters need to insist upon it.

36 percent of the population doesn’t vote in national elections. The non-voter is giving it all away. Local elections  where the voter has the greatest power are ignored. The non-voter believes “I don’t count.” Acting as if you don’t count makes it so. Local officials hear your complaints and demands. If they don’t listen, they will not be reelected. Ralph Nader said that we need to elect those who serve our needs,

Let us say, “Tell me” and then vote accordingly. Let us start locally with whom we elect as mayor and school board, and fire chief, and environmentalists who demand that toxic sites be removed … and us. Do not hesitate to run. Elect those who represent us. Survival needs a foundation of trust. Do not settle for less.

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