For Baby boomers, time is on our side if we take it.

Wayne Clark PhD

If we do not deal with the changes in our climate, we will run out of time. Recently I wrote about the impact of denial on our perception of the world, if we do not believe in something then we will not see the impact of its consequences. If we believe an election was stolen then we will act to destroy our democratic institutions like voting and the citadel of democracy our capital. Little more than one month later we were faced with the worst cold spell in years, a cold spell that left millions without power for days not just hours.

Climate is changing, but we still can minimize consequences by doing simple things like rebuilding our electrical, water, and emergency systems that will give us time to fix our planet before Mother Nature fixes it for us. We need to look honestly at what is the problem and how to fix it. Government by principles of democracy where all citizens interests are taken care of not just the few at the top, trickle down does not work for most. Ground up where our responsibility is to all, not just a few, where our environment, the earth, water, air and fire are seen as treasure that effect and benefit us all.

Our challenge is to take care of the air we breath, the water we drink, the ground we traverse, and the temperatures we manage. As we get the pandemic under control, we need to focus dramatically on the air, water, earth, and fire as in temperature around us. This needs to be not just a federal effort but a local, regional, state and global effort. Rebuild our society, keep what is working well, shore up that which is not. Build with all our resources, both our private sector business and public sector government resources, a partnership of synchronized effort.

How did we get in this predicament where the perception of government is so far off from reality? All to many of our citizens question the important role and function of our public servants. Instead of a valued resource they are not respected for the vital part they play in our current interrelationship of our society and the way it is managed and thrives. Well we have to confront the real hoax perpetrated on our citizens, namely the pronouncement that there is no role for governments in modern society. The hoax that government is best when it is governed least, this world view is not real, it is a perception that is based on a falsehood and a fundamental misunderstanding of how a modern democratic society can best thrive.

First of all we must remind ourselves of some basics, that when you have a plumbing problem, you need a plumber, when you have an electrical problem you need an electrician, when you have a health care issue you need a health care professional. We have to get rid of the false perception that experts are the cause of problems instead remind ourselves that they are the solution to our problems. We must return to the reality that recognizes there are experts, persons with experience, scientists, dedicated scholars, and public servants that have embraced the reality that expertise is valuable, that knowledge is power, that experience counts, and that principles of a democracy require a synthesis of private enterprise and the public good. Instead of considering them antithetical to each other, they are necessary partners.

This synthesis has never been more evident than in the last few years, when there was an attempt to remove that partnership by promoting a false world view that government is not needed, that expertise does not exist, that anybody can for instance instantly make a societal problem disappear. For instance take the Covid pandemic. What has happened to get us out of the global threat of disease causing a potential extinction of our human race? It is the scientific knowledge applied to the problem, it is the knowledge that a vaccine years in the making by scientific discoveries becomes a solution to a problem within a year after the problem is discovered. The public private partnership that assists scientists whether in the private sector funded by government research or in collaboration with researchers in the National Institutes, combined they lent their expertise to make the discovery of the vaccine possible. Now the private sector expertise coupled with the government resources will get the vaccine produced in sufficient quantities to make a difference in stopping the spread of the disease.

This synthesis of government and private collaboration, coordination, and competence is just the initial building block for what it takes a modern society to solve problems. There is also the foundational work during the crisis of public and private health care and front line workers to keep the ship afloat while the biological scientists comes up with a vaccine. These fundamental collaborations require government resources, feeding functional food chains, essential services, and other necessary activities of daily living. To label this expertise by government entities as not acting in the public good, is a lie, a hoax, a complete misconception of reality and what is needed to manage a significant crisis and a world wide disaster.

We can now see that placing somebody in charge of something they don’t believe in creates a monumental disaster. Our society, our citizens have come to realize that the health care staff, the first responders, the procurement experts, the distribution systems work best when they are in harmony with one another rather than fighting each other. We breed disasters by having perpetrators of anti government theories, unscientific conspiracies, and proponents of no role for government to work closely with the private sector to solve societal problems like pandemics.

This hoax about the role of government raised its ugly head again recently when climate events in Texas resulted in a disaster that was created by not respecting science, not giving the government a proper role in regulating, preparing for and preventing the lack of fundamental services such as electricity, water, and heat for millions of people.

Governmental functions are to oversee, regulate, collaborate, invest in private sector preparedness, that will make our society into a modern society that function best.

It is a hoax to proposes no role for these experts, these public servants, these scientists when they have spent their careers being the stewards for the interest of the average citizens. To view their role as otherwise is a lie with tragic consequences. We can now see the fallacy and the time has come for us to take off our blinders, our conspiracy anti government glasses and realize we have a great opportunity to step forward into the 21sr and 22nd centuries with new levels of collaboration, science, and take the responsibility for caring for all our citizens through government intervention, private sector expertise, common decency, common sense, and a common vision the important role of government and its public servants!

We have not run out of time, we can work with Mother Nature, we can open our eyes, we can care for Mother Earth. We can seize the time, we can make the world the better place for our children and their children.