We are at a critical turning point on Afghanistan. It is the decision that will decide all that follows. Obama has been a horrendous president, squandering the huge progressive momentum that put him and a democratic congress in place. But he is not yet George W. Bush. If we can stop the Afghani escalation and turn the country toward a sane disengagement from there first, and from empire in general, it will mark an historic turning point. The glimmer of light that we might be able to do this is very small. But it's something tangible, and we must pursue it now with all our powers.
1. BAN WASTE AND WAR: Nothing may be produced that cannot be fully recycled or that will not completely bio-degrade. This includes weapons whose sole purpose is death and destruction, and whose manufacture and use must be ended by a global community that knows war to be the ultimate act of ecological suicide.
2. MAXIMIZE EFFICIENCY & CONSERVATION: From energy to building materials, food to fiber, water to paper, our resources must be preserved. Our unsustainable consumption and wasteful industries must be made appropriate and efficient, starting with a reborn mass transit system and complete preservation of all remaining virgin land and waters.
3. TRANSCEND FOSSIL/NUKE: King CONG (Coal, Oil, Nukes & Gas) must take its place in the compost heap of history. Our addiction to filthy, finite fossil/nuclear fuels has led us to the brink of economic and ecological collapse. In the new green millennium, we either kick the habit, or it kills us.
5. GO ORGANIC: Factory farming, genetically modified crops and chemical pesticides, herbicides and fertilizers are unsustainable. Diverse, community-scaled, reliably organic agriculture is the key to a future fed by food that's fit to eat.
6. TRANSFORM THE CORPORATION: Our most powerful - and destructive - institution claims human rights without human responsibilities. Corporate charters must require social service, ecological accountability and establish a barrier between capitalism and cannibalism. "Green" corporations whose legal mandate still remains limited to accumulating profits will make a mess of the planet as surely as all those that have come before.
7. ASSURE SOCIAL DEMOCRACY: Universal hand-counted (recycled) paper ballots and curbs on the power of money to sway elections are the essence of global democracy, as is the demand for social justice. Until all humans are assured the basics of life - food, shelter, clothing, health care, education - democracy and freedom are shallow illusions.
8. EMPOWER WOMEN/CONTROL POPULATION: Where enfranchised, educated, fairly paid and in control of their own bodies, the natural union of women with Mother Earth brings us the children She wishes to support. On a healthy planet, birth rates find their natural level when all children are loved and wanted, which is where Solartopia starts.
This list follows the form of Buddhism's Four Noble Truths and Eight-Fold Path to Enlightenment. But all religions at their core call for universal harmony between people and the planet.
Harvey's website bio, speaking engagements, books and more
Solartopia website specifically dedicated to Harvey's environmental vision