Hot, Flat, and Riveting

I’m only 100 pages into Thomas Friedman’s “Hot, Flat, and Crowded,” and I’ve already worn out one highlighter.

Antagonists are painting the book as “An Inconvenient Truth II.” But it’s really a paean to social and economic progress over protectionism.

In other words, today’s energy and environmental challenges are an enormous opportunity for world-changing innovation, not for burying our heads in an Arctic snowbank. (“Drill, baby, drill.”)

Here are a few of TF’s ideas that have energized my thinking. I hope leaders from both political parties are reading, too…

* “Every day it feels to me more and more like we are living off the surpluses and infrastructure that were left to us by the Greatest Generation, without sufficiently replenishing them.”

* “Instead of rethinking and redesigning what it means to be an American, in many areas we Americans are still intensifying, expanding, and plain old doubling down on our old energy-guzzling model.”

* “We wanted everyone to be converted to the American way of life, although we never really thought about the implications. [Now] we have to take the lead in redesigning and reinventing what living like us means—what constitutes the ‘American way’ in energy and resource consumption terms.”