After eight presidents of the United States from Nixon to Obama have promised and failed to make this country energy independent, is there any reason why Americans should listen to a former president of Shell Oil USA?
To which I reply, yes. And what’s more, we’d better.
Challenges, Lagarde said, are low growth, rising inequality, and falling numbers of jobs. Resolve these three stumbling blocks and we may get the world to work better. The IMF alone cannot do it, nor even the IMF, World Bank, U.S. Government, OECD, European Union, United Nations together. We can’t channel the human mind to a higher level anytime soon, but we’d better tackle those three bugbears or we’re all sunk. The wealthy with the others.
Times are difficult, and polarized silos exist. It is more important than ever, for differing cultures to understand and accept one another.
For IT providers and IT consumers, wide gulfs of misunderstanding create false impressions of antagonism. These stumbling blocks are easily remedied with sensitive, mutual understanding, and some basics in vocabulary building.
We were running our press shop at the U.S. Embassy, riding on cascades of resources finagled by Charles Wick of USIA, and Madrid’s good fortune of being rid of a dictatorship (1975) and well on its way to catching up with other Western European democracies. Washington pushed resources at us, and we knew better than to question these gifts.
Wick had spawned a clunky communication system, WORLDNET (always spelled out in caps, although they never explained why.) It allowed for one-way video on rented satellite time ($10,000 per hour) and gave live interviews for very select audiences overseas.
Think of it: Along all 95,000 miles of American coastline – not to mention coastlines all over the earth – “immense areas will most likely have to be abandoned to the rising sea.” Los Angeles, New York, London, Shanghai, Sydney, you name it: all the coastal cities of the world will be vulnerable to the same fate as Atlantis. Continue reading Attention must be paid (except to climate change)→