Break Through: Why We Can't Leave Saving the Planet to Environmentalists

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Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, Mar 10, 2009 - Political Science - 256 pages
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Current tactics can’t solve today’s complex global crises. The “bad boys of environmentalism” call for a bold and empowering new vision

Environmental insiders Michael Shellenberger and Ted Nordhaus triggered a firestorm of controversy with their self-published essay “The Death of Environmentalism,” which argued that environmentalism cannot deal with global warming and should die so that a new politics can be born. Global warming is far more complex than past pollution problems, and American values have changed dramatically since the movement’s greatest victories in the 1960s, but environmentalists keep fighting the same old battles. Seeing a connection between the failures of environmentalism and the failures of the entire left-leaning political agenda, the authors point the way toward an aspirational politics that will resonate with modern American values and be capable of tackling our most pressing challenges.

In this eagerly awaited follow-up to the original essay, the authors give us an expansive and eloquent manifesto for political change. What Americans really want, and what could serve as the basis for a new politics, is a vision capable of inspiring us to greatness. Making the case for abandoning old categories (nature/market, left/right), the authors articulate a pragmatism fit for our times that has already found champions in such prominent figures as Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama.

This book will hit the same nerve as What’s the Matter with Kansas and Don’t Think of an Elephant. But its analysis will reshape American politics for decades to come.

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LibraryThing Review

User Review  - MMSequeira - LibraryThing

A few interesting ideas and some interesting thoughts floating in a see of self-righteous, liberal (american sense) bromides, such as saying that those which support free markets are "market ... Read full review

Break through: from the death of environmentalism to the politics of possibility

User Review  - Not Available - Book Verdict

Nordhaus and Shellenberger contend that standard environmental tactics won't solve global warming and insist that a paradigm shift in our approach to the problem is essential. Their central point is ... Read full review

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