A New Astonishing Experience, Psychological Subsidence
Early in my experiments with Virtual Concerts, thanks to input from Hans Tammen of Harvestworks & my own observations, I realized there were two problems that mirrored larger demographic divides over global warming. We need to create consensus across that divide to achieve sustainable Vision and realistic Actions.
I call this the need for pan-demographic consensus.
The first problem in this divide is that the youngest people are the most user friendly to the tech but the least intellectually developed to grasp the implications of complex problems around global warming. The other is that older generations, well-equipped to work thru the concepts, were either rigid in thier thinking (less true as the continuing dire info on global warming is doled out in the media) or resistant to learning the tech to access the process. The latter is slowly shifting. The former was a mystery. Both are questions of exposure to data and continuing education. Until last tonight.
Last night, I was the guest of someone else on TalkShoe. Joh Buehler hosts a show at 10:PM Saturdays on TalkShoe, called: Reinventing Eden. It was fascinating. John is a lovely, gracious, knowledgeable host and I will look forward to listening to some of his previous podcasts.
I prepared for the show by reviewing all my past blogs thru to Aug 1 on global warming.
What I couldn't prepare for was that I had to give up control in a new way and take responsibility in another way than I do when I moderate my own Tuesday shows to talk about global warming. Furthermore, I could tell John is a Republican. I could tell he was a Republican beacuse he said two nice things about them. He also took a deep breathe when I referred to the election. I am not often in the position of discussing global warming with Republicans.
And we are on the same side of what I call this little Jihad of Reason in response to global warming. The only thing we disagreed about was whether there are more fools than wise people out there to forestall the consequences of global warming. John thinks there are more fools than I do. You can listen to us reach that point of difference by logging on and clicking "Listen" at TalkShoe. What is more important, that we agree on, is the potential of this media to address global warming by creating a pan-demographic constituency.
But that wasn't the truly astonishing part.
The astonishing part was that one of the listeners, who has a talkshoe scheduled to follow John's at 11: PM ET Saturday is thirteen. He told us he was thirteen and I thought he meant he had an access code of #13. No. He meant he is thirteen eyars old and his show followed Eden and he wanted us to come to it. He had been doing his homework while listening to us. He was doing that while we talked about 40% carbon emissions from coal and how the education of women results in lower populations. He was doing that while we discussed politics and biological diversity and dying polar bears and ecological art and Jeroen Van Westen who will be my guest this Tuesday. Before we closed, he invited us to his talkcast.
John & I are older and were sleepier, possibly in another time zone and begged off. But a little later, I signed on out of curiousity and sure enuf, I saw John there and heard a thirteen year old voice. All I could say was: Goodness (as in goodness gracious, land sakes alive).
An inadequate response to an astonishing experience.
If this medium can be truly pan-demographic then it can realize everything I could hope for in terms of outreach and building consensus from shared data. If I can talk with a Republican about global warming to an audience of thirteen year olds, anything can happen.
The young man's name is Evan Ruede and apparently he has a talkcast, an audience in his age range and he is lined up right alongside us in the roster. I am astonished and rendered optimistic out of my mind.
On John's show, John asked me what would be my take away for the audience. I said, stay, wait, look listen. Stay where we are long enuf to learn how to cope with human intransigence & greed. Wait till we know what can be done before we build more coal factories. Look at the dying polar bears and missing monarchs. Listen to the data that is gathering over lost coastlines and land subsidence. Pay attention to it all. I said this media teaches us all the skills we we need to solve the problems: humility & flexibility. Humility before technoilogy, flexibility in how we respond to technology and the potential it offers. these are the same tools we need to address global warming now.
I just got tested on both counts tonight: in my own process of exposure to data and continuing education. I encountered a need for another measure of humility and was challenged to be flexible.
Land subsidence in response to resource extraction may be locking humankind into a death-spiral in denial of limits but an unlimited human resource is humility and flexibility. In fact, it may be the only resource that seems to expand in capacity the deeper it is mined.