Updated: 9/11/06; 6:52:25 AM.
Gil Friend
Strategic Sustainability, and other worthy themes of our time

Sunday, May 16, 2004

Disclosing New Worlds: Entrepreneurship, Democractic Action, and the Cultivation of Solidarity
Charles Spinoza, Fernando Flores and Hubert Dreyfus
Challenging, profound, significant.

Building Trust -- in business, politics, relationships, and life
Robert Solomon and Fernando Flores
A more easily accessible exploration of related territory.

Plan B: Rescuing a Planet under Stress and a Civilization in Trouble
Lester Brown
Plenty of bad news (the water deficit tally alone should be enough to get your attention, but that's just one of many) -- followed, fortunately, by a plan of action to steer us out of looming systems failure. Hence the title.
4:48:55 PM    comment []  trackback []

Carl Frankel's new book -- Out of the Labyrinth: Who We Are, How We Go Wrong, and What We Can Do About It -- is out and the jacket copy describes it as 'combining a visionary framework, a personal narrative, and cultural criticism into a story about where we have gone wrong as a culture and what we must do -- and become -- to set things right.

'That's pretty accurate,' he notes, 'which is no surprise, considering I wrote it.'

He continues on a more serious note: The book is also very much about sustainability, but it comes at the subject from a perspective that I have heard described as 'orthogonal' -- a two-dollar word that means perpendicular to the usual perspective. What I have tried to do is integrate issues of self and meaning -- the interior dimension, as it were -- into our understanding of what sustainability is, and of what it requires.

I'll confess I haven't read the book yet (but plan to). But I have read earlier drafts, and know that Carl [disclaimer: a friend] is hot on the trail of something deeply important here.

Detailed description of the book, downloadable excerpt, etc, at http://www.outofthelabyrinth.com
4:33:00 PM    comment []  trackback []

Question of the dayDo you think we have already hit peak oil or not? [John Robb's Weblog]

Between Hubbert's Peak, global warming, heat rejection from fossil and nuclear energy conversation, and the physical security of oil supplies, those who remain dependent on fossil fuel may be in for quite a ride.

'Fasten your seatbelts, it's going to be a bumpy night!'
4:25:07 PM    comment []  trackback []

A novel perspective on energy transitions:

[Institute for the Analysis of Global Security]: The Chinese would probably leapfrog oil if they could. Dependency of any kind is foreign to their culture. But without substantial American technological support, China is likely to follow the path of least resistance and become a full-fledged oil economy. Failure to address the issue with the utmost care would undercut all of today's costly efforts by the U.S. to reform and stabilize the Middle East.

The U.S. should embark on a frank dialogue with China, conveying to the Chinese the mutual benefits of circumventing oil and offering any assistance required to curb China's growing appetite for it. A shift from oil into other sources of transportation energy [~] such as bio-fuels or coal-based fuels, hydrogen and natural gas [~] could prevent future conflict and foster unprecedented Sino-American cooperation with significant economic benefits for both countries.

But not, I suspect, enough to get the attention of the Axis of Oil.
11:28:40 AM    comment []  trackback []

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