>> Tuesday, September 29, 2009
Earlier this month, I was really upset when the conservative media used smear tactics to force Van Jones to resign from his position with the Obama Administration. Jones admittedly had past affiliations with the radical left, but he left that past behind many years ago to focus on a new goal. Not to spread communism, as Glenn Beck claimed, but to help create a new future for capitalism by building up the green sector of our economy.
I read Jones' book, The Green Collar Economy, several months ago, and I loved it. Throughout the book, my thoughts were a constant chorus of yeses and that's rights and exactlies.
Environmentalism covers a very broad range of ideas and goals. It would be nearly impossible to be actively involved in every environmentally-related movement, so we greenies tend to focus on one or two areas that really get our blood boiling. Some people care most about food policy, some about water conservation, others about climate change. For me, I have to tell you, this is it. More than anything, I believe in clean, green, and fair for everyone.
I don't believe that everyone should have equal everything, but I do believe there are certain rights that all human beings are entitled to, and those rights include access to clean water, healthy food, and an unpolluted environment. For too many people, those rights do not exist. For too many years, poor communities have taken the brunt of our environmental damage.
I found The Green Collar Economy so inspiring because it is a capitalist solution to two of our biggest problems. Fix our ailing economy by saving the planet. What a beautiful, beautiful concept that, as Jones says, should be common ground for both the right and the left:
We’re not talking about expanding welfare, we’re talking about expanding work. We’re not talking about expanding entitlements, we’re talking about expanding enterprise and investments. We’re not talking about redistributing existing wealth, we’re talking about reinventing an existing sector, and creating new wealth by unleashing innovation and entrepeneurship. This should be common ground. We should be able to stand together and be one country on this.A couple weeks after his resignation, Van Jones asked his supporters to "spread the green jobs gospel." I strongly support a green collar economy, and that's why I've decided that for the next month or two I'll be devoting several posts here and at The Green Phone Booth to explaining what a green collar job is and how we can make this country a little cleaner, greener, and fairer for everyone.
If this is a subject you care about, help me spread the word. Grab a copy of The Green Collar Economy and start preaching the green jobs gospel.
- Book Review: The Green Collar Economy
- Clean, Green, and Fair for Everyone
- Book Review: Nickel and Dimed