Sunday, March 8, 2009

A Blog by Jim Kunstler

Writing a Sunday morning blog is something I always take seriously but try to keep light!
by Charlie Leck

Sunday mornings are special – at least around here. Sleep-in a little – at least ‘til 5:30 – and spend time with the Sunday NY Times to which I have now subscribed. Normally, I have my Sunday blog all ready on Saturday evening and I put it on auto-pilot for posting on Sunday at about 4:00 A.M.. However, I’ve struggled this week because I normally want the Sunday morning blog to be on the light, cheery side; yet I can’t get the Republican Party out of my mind.

I don’t want to go there, so I’ll resist for another day. I’ll just point out that the Republicans are driving me crazy. There appears to be a big fight for leadership right now and the titular head of the party, Michael Steele, is losing. Steele created quite a flap by first criticizing Rush Limbaugh and then, crowded in a corner, kissing his feet while making prolific apologies. [If you’re interested in this little story, read Adam Nagourney’s blog in the NY Times of 2 March 2008.]

The question being tossed about right now is whether Steele, Limbaugh or the old wily veteran, Newt Gingrich, is the real head of the Party. Ugh! That’s ugly whoever it might be and it means only cantankerous fighting and no sort of cooperation to rebuild the nation.

Rebuilding the nation appears primary in mind and that thought sent me off on a tangent that has become the main theme of this morning.

The Nation Needs RebuildingBy this I mean in many ways – socially, economically, structurally, culturally and psychologically. Wow! That’s too big a task for any Sunday morning blog; however, it does seem to me to be okay to introduce the subject and to inform you that I’m going to take each one of those sub-subjects about rebuilding the country and write about them in the next two weeks.

Clusterfuck Nation
There is one particular blog that presents some wise thinking about renewing the nation and giving it a new appearance and new attitude. It’s by Jim Kunstler and I read it every Monday to get his take on how the nation could really look if we only had some creative leadership. Kunstler posts every Monday morning. [Read!] Thanks to one of my readers, out there in Columbus, Wisconsin, for giving me this thought on a Sunday morning and prompting me to tell you about the Kunstler blog. Kunstler also has a helpful web site where he explains what he’s all about.

Why does Jim Kunstler persist?

“Because I believe a lot of people share my feelings about the tragic landscape of highway strips, parking lots, housing tracts, mega-malls, junked cities, and ravaged countryside that makes up the everyday environment where most Americans live and work.”
In short, Kunstler believes the nation can both function better and look better; and he pretty much devotes his working life to that belief.

This is what the web site, TED (Ideas Worth Spreading), had to say about Kunstler and his work:
"In James Howard Kunstler's view, public spaces should be inspired centers of civic life and the physical manifestation of the common good. Instead, he argues, what we have in America is a nation of places not worth caring about.

"About James Howard Kunstler
James Howard Kunstler may be the world’s most outspoken critic of suburban sprawl. He believes the end of the fossil fuels era will soon force a return to smaller-scale, agrarian communities… Full bio and more links"

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