Sunday, October 11, 2009

The Power of Green

Tom Friedman, author of “The Power of Green,” describes his ideas of green patriotism with his motto: “Green is the new red, white and blue.” The term green is slowly transforming from “tree-hugging” and “girly” to being considered geoeconomic and environment-friendly. This ideology could be the binding tool to revive America’s patriotism. The United States has made steps toward uniting after the 9/11 tragedy but a common interest or goal could help quicken the process.

Americans are continuously bombarded with issues regarding global warming, the economy and terrorism, and the solution of creating a green nation can be the beginning of a consolidating political movement. Painting the states green could erase over the divisions and differences of the red and blue states and transform the image of the US into one single hue and could drive us forward.

Tom Friedman believes that the highway system that President Eisenhower installed after the Communist threat helped America’s car culture grow and aided to our dependence of oil. Because of this “red menace” we have to pay for our reliance on harmful fossil fuels and the economic and environmental prices that came along with the habit.

We are in desperate need of a leader who can address the “profound economic, geopolitical and climate threats posed by our addiction to oil” (Friedman). By making more efficient ways of producing energy we can regain our “international stature” by leading the way in fueling our nation in a much cleaner way with alternative energy. These changes are in hopes that many countries will follow the example.


Orbi Dayrit said...

I believe that most people who think that going green is "sissy" are still ignorant to the fact that if we do not go green it will only increase our cost of living, and they do not care about the far distant future when our resources become scarce for our next generations.

America does not yet view being environmentally friendly as being patriotic. However, I doubt that pushing American to come together as a green nation will effectively tie political campaigns together. Both sides of the spectrum will still argue over how we spend the money to become a greener nation. I also do not believe that the environment issue is at much importance in the current stature of President Obama, rather he is focused on health care reform.
Going green is something that will slowly consume a nation.

Shikhar.Singh said...

my main problem with the green revolution, and people latching onto it is I think that more than people actually care about the environment, people just feel guilty for not being more environmentally conscious. This makes me feel that our faith in the green movement is a means of assuaging our guilt for the destructive way we engage with the environment in the first place.

Kind of like when we see those green peace people on the drag that just want donations... sure people probably donate out of guilt but continue to go about their day polluting as usual, just not feeling that bad about it because giving to them makes us feel like we're doing something about it.

I think in many ways the green revolution represents the same sort of notion... we latch onto "clean air" efforts but continue to live in an unsustainable way. One example of this is the cap and trade system which allows companies to plant trees for the "extra emissions" they contribute - while planting more trees doesn't actually do anything to stop emissions in the short-run, companies claim they're "green" and can capitalize off of the fact that people choose not to investigate further!

It's a shame really...

Xochitl said...

In this article it said some people say that this is the "greenest generation," I just think that we just have to be. This generation has to pick up the mess that the generation before us left. We're not feeling guilty because or envirnoment is weaking, its just that it's affecting our world harder than it was before, therefore we do feel a responsiblity to take care of it.

I do think that if any rich country starts leading a path to a greener life that others will follow its example. Someone has to start and take the risks, even if it does mean that our lifestyles will change, because, bottom line, it's going to change in one way or another, I just hope that it's the greenest way.