Daily Podcast: Hairshirt Today, What Tomorrow?
I really do wonder about the clash of ideologies inherent in the green movement. I'm just about old enough to remember America's transition from seemingly boundless self-confidence and optimism (retro-actively captured by Donald Fagen's masterpiece The Nightfly) to cynicism, doubt, fear and self-loathing (typified by Buffalo Springfield's "Stop, hey what's that sound"). Automotively speaking, what greater contrast could you have than the bold, brash, befinned Cadillacs of the '50's vs. today's Kremlin-style DTS? But the wider point perplexes. Are we really supposed to be the generation that turns it back on conspicuous consumption in favor of social responsibility? While I am, at heart, a minimalist, I find the idea of peak oil and global warming and don't drive an SUV or a Ferrari 'cause you're killing my child, your child, everyone's children to be somehow antithetical to the American way. I know that the 50's weren't a lot of laughs for a lot of people, and that "the American way" as described revolts many people, but is it really so wrong to celebrate conspicuous consumption? While some– and I'm thinking Tesla here– capture the public imagination with a "cake and eat it too" solution, I'm not so sure we can have it both ways. Nor am I sure I can give up the things I love for the greater good. Just sayin'.