News Release

Climate: * Political Will * Candidates

Climate: * Political Will * CandidatesVICTOR WALLIS, zendive at aol.com
Wallis is author of Red-Green Revolution: The Politics and Technology of Ecosocialism (2018) and Democracy Denied: Five Lectures on U.S. Politics (2019). See his website: VictorWallis.com.

He said today: “Greta Thunberg told the UN on Monday: ‘People are suffering. People are dying. Entire ecosystems are collapsing. We are at the beginning of a mass extinction and all you can talk about is money and fairy tales of eternal economic growth, How dare you!’

“This puts it in a nutshell. The scientific reports already note the need for systemic change. The diagnosis is no longer at issue. What is missing is the political force to compel the necessary steps. The development of this force — which will require participation by the tens of millions — is what needs to accelerate.

“As of now we are confronted by two forms of denial: the open rejection of science by the Republicans vs. the ‘yes but’ approach of the establishment Democrats. These approaches reinforce each other in practice.

“The idea of a Green New Deal provides a mobilizing focus, but it needs to be understood as requiring the prohibition of fracking and of new oil-exploration. It indeed will create ‘jobs,’ but these will require a new kind of authority that has the power to draw resources away from current wasteful and destructive pursuits — and from the extraordinarily concentrated fortunes that have been allowed to form.

“So far the political energy and organization for such steps is still lacking, but the scale of young people’s involvement — along with their sense of urgency — provides a ray of hope. But all our efforts must go in this direction without delay.

“Elements of the required policy measures can be found both in Bernie Sanders’ environmental plan and in the Green Party’s program, which they have been promoting since 2010.

“The action of the Democrats in quashing the effort to have in-depth discussion of environmental policy is symptomatic of the corporate-inspired resistance that has to be overcome. They fear debate precisely because any thorough discussion would point toward the need for more radical steps than they are willing to have us even think about — let alone put into practice.”