Saturday, October 04, 2008

Carl Sagan's fears were well founded.

Some of my favorite writers/bloggers will be at Beyond Belief: Candles in the Dark., a science program run by the Science Network. This year, it will be held at the Salk Institute in La Jolla. It was never more pertinent to our state, our party or our planet than now.

The promo for this session quoted the late Carl Sagan.
In The Demon-Haunted World, Carl Sagan wrote: Science is more than a body of knowledge; it is a way of thinking. I have a foreboding of an America in my children's or grandchildren's time -- when the United States is a service and information economy; when nearly all the key manufacturing industries have slipped away to other countries; when awesome technological powers are in the hands of a very few, and no one representing the public interest can even grasp the issues; when the people have lost the ability to set their own agendas or knowledgeably question those in authority; when, clutching our crystals and nervously consulting our horoscopes, our critical faculties in decline, unable to distinguish between what feels good and what's true, we slide, almost without noticing, back into superstition and darkness.
Those who watched the Biden - Palin debate, who understand the statistics of the stories behind the current economic morass that we are in, who know that you can not defeat global warming by chanting drill, baby, drill, must realize that the time Sagan feared has arrived.

It reminds me of what Jane Jacobs wrote in her last book, Dark Age Ahead. she warns a culture that gives lip service to valuing science but has not developed the scientific habit of mind to question and then seek answers.

Is that not what Greens all over should be doing? Questioning, and then seeking answers? Instead, we all seem to want to relive the past. We are living in the world that Sagan and Jacobs warned us about. The ideals that got us here have to be questioned, but then there also have to be answers, solutions to the problems that we face.

We must begin from the fundamental point that everything is ecological. If we accept that, and act accordingly, the rest follows. You can not maintain ecological balance without providing social justice for all.

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