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Why you can't argue with a "modern"

The modern's outlook demands nothing of us except acquiescence to the current power structure and its prescribed trajectory for the human endeavor. The modern's message soothes our worries and calms our fears about our future and that of our descendants...until the day comes when it doesn't.

The end of introspection (and why it matters)

A friend of mine who teaches undergraduates provided insight into something I see regularly ... namely, young people (and some not so young) who appear to be entirely an appendage of their cellphones. One study concluded that "[t]he average college student uses a smartphone for about nine hours each day."

Why the fight for GMO labeling is (possibly) over

As more and more people come to prefer non-GMO food, it will simply become easier to entertain mixed groups by assuring everyone that all the food and drink available is non-GMO.

Corruption, resources, climate and systemic risk

Corruption like that revealed in the Panama Papers pales in comparison to the kind that threatens to undermine the very material underpinnings of our society.

Vermont calls Big Food's bluff on GMO labels

Large food processors have long claimed that state laws forcing them to label foods containing genetically engineered ingredients would lead to 1) higher prices for consumers who would end up paying the cost of special labeling for one or just a few states and/or 2) fewer food choices as processors simply withdrew some or all of their products from states requiring labeling.

Energy policy and uninformed opinion

Famed economist John Kenneth Galbraith used to respond to questions about the direction of the economy and financial markets by saying: "I answer because I'm asked not because I know."

Oregon says yes to coal-free electricity

It is a sign of the times that the public debate among major players over Oregon's coal-free future saw little contention regarding the reality of climate change and focused mostly on the best way to address it. Given the rancor which has previously marked public exchanges about climate change in the United States, that's remarkable progress all by itself

Ready for more punishment: Investors load up on oil share offerings

Investors keep hoping that the Saudis don't really know what they are doing. So far the Saudis appear to have the upper hand, and I'm guessing that those buying newly issued oil company shares these days are miscalculating once again.

"The Future" as a sales pitch

No one can know the future. But it turns out we can invent a place called "The Future" and invite people to inhabit it.

Toward a new rhetoric of political ecology: Can religion teach us something?

The effectiveness of religious rhetoric suggests that environmentalists ought not to discard it, but rather figure out how to harness it even more effectively. Environmentalism is, in fact, now emerging as a nonsectarian religious movement embraced by congregants as different in their religious beliefs as Pope Francis, the Creation Care movement of evangelical Christians, Jewish environmental …
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