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Break Through: From the Death of Environmentalism to the Politics of Possibility | [Ted Nordhaus, Michael Shellenberger]

Break Through: From the Death of Environmentalism to the Politics of Possibility

Environmental insiders Michael Shellenberger and Ted Nordhaus triggered a firestorm of debate with their self-published essay, "The Death of Environmentalism". In this eagerly anticipated follow-up, the authors expand upon their argument that the paradigms driving the environmental movement and much of liberal politics are outdated and ineffective.
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Publisher's Summary

Environmental insiders Michael Shellenberger and Ted Nordhaus triggered a firestorm of debate with their self-published essay, "The Death of Environmentalism". In this eagerly anticipated follow-up, the authors expand upon their argument that the paradigms driving the environmental movement and much of liberal politics are outdated and ineffective. A politics centered on restricting human growth and development, they point out, does not resonate with the primary concerns of either the developing world or insecure modern Americans: nor can it solve a problem as large and complex as global warming. What is needed instead, they argue, is a new kind of development, motivated by an optimistic vision of the future that integrates ecological, social, and economic change. By shifting from a politics of fear and limits to one of expansive possibility, they say, we can galvanize American creativity and enterprise to tackle our most pressing challenges.

©2007 Ted Nordhaus and Michael Shellenberger; (P)2007 Blackstone Audio Inc.

What the Critics Say

"'The Death of Environmentalism'...has provoked a civil war among tree-huggers for its assertion that 'modern environmentalism...must die so that something new can live.' Sad to say, the authors are right." (New York Times)

What Members Say

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    Linda Colorado Springs, CO, United States 02-05-08
    Linda Colorado Springs, CO, United States 02-05-08 Member Since 2007
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    "A New Look at the Environment"

    This is a fresh look at how to approach the deteriorating condition of the globe as well as minkind's role in the problem and practical approach to solutions. The positive approach of how to solve environmental concerns was refreshing. However, the criticism of past approaches was overdone and somewhat counterproductive.

    2 of 3 people found this review helpful
  •  
    William Shock Chicago Illinois 11-19-07
    William Shock Chicago Illinois 11-19-07 Member Since 2007

    RH

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    "Trojan horse for the free market"

    Nordhaus and Shellenberger give us a new vision of post environmentalism, an ugly nightmare where wilderness and biodiversity are all just human constructs and people revert into fantasy to find reality. In a world of finite resources the infinite possibilities of our imaginations cannot trump the real world of limitations. Nordhaus and Shellenberger have been watching too much T.V.

    2 of 3 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Michael Walnut Creek, CA, United States 10-03-07
    Michael Walnut Creek, CA, United States 10-03-07 Member Since 2002

    I focus on fiction, sci-fi, fantasy, science, history, politics and read a lot. I try to review everything I read.

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    "Must Read"

    This book is not particularly well written; it jumps around, and occasionally loses focus. Nevertheless, I consider it a “must read” because it addresses, from a fundamentally liberal perspective, the glaring weaknesses of environmentalism, as well as many aspects of liberalism generally.

    I used to consider myself both liberal and environmentalist. But, over the years, the underlying pessimism of both systems has driven me away. This book shines a light upon many of these aspects of pessimism, and proposes a renewed system to focus the world’s creativity and optimism on making progress towards real prosperity (which includes positive ecological change).

    6 of 10 people found this review helpful
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