Education and culture/science, religion, governance, economics: I wonder if there are writers for children who are working out stories, parables, that redirect us to the kind of values McKibben sees as needed. I don't know where he found out that people have half as many friends when using automobiles, but where I live I find I have to explain that if you're getting around in a steel case you won't be using that time socially, though the one driving around in the steel case would be able to attend meetings farther afield. I feel the need to explain to Washington DC in general all the time. In listening to Summers and Geithner and legislators, they think in terms of heating up the economy, with all the concomitant elements that are ruinous in terms of environment. Of roads, some legislator or economist on the Sunday morning talk shows today said. "Don't you know road-work is square one in any recovery?" To listen to McKibben, there may not be time to educate a generation to see a better future without basing it on ginning up the destructive parts of the past economy (and its corresponding social independence). Let alone bring that vision to fruition. Be that as it may, children exist. How can a declaration of dependence (McKibben's phrase) be put on the table as centerpiece? But I suspect publishers, teachers, and school boards would view new parables askance. Maybe not. I ask you. Actually, lots of children's classics do proffer McKibben's values, partly because children are already downsized. In some basic way, they know they are not in charge, and value themselves regardless, and put trust and collaboration right at the center. But education has this spiritual aspect to it, and maybe you have addressed it in a show already. McKibben spoke of 16- to 25-year-olds at his home and as students at Middlebury College, how they reassure him, reinspire him. How did they get so savvy, so wise?
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