"There are endless questions and conundrums about the largely unforeseen situation in which we now find ourselves, all six billion of us. One of them is: if capitalism and communism both failed, what’s the alternative? The big tent of subversions and traditions called the left hasn’t, in recent times, done a very good job of providing pictures of the possibilities available to us. Still, perhaps the answer to what the political and social alternatives might be will prove very close to what a sustainable world in the face of climate change might look like: small, local, smart, flexible economies and technologies, democracy as direct as possible, an elimination of excess wealth as part of a leveling that might also eliminate dire poverty.
Some of our hope for the future has to be that, one day, the ecological and the economic can be aligned so that, among other things, petroleum and coal become increasingly expensive, as well as increasingly offensive, ways to run our machines. Will we be creative enough to embrace change before crashing systems and wild weather force change on us in the form of an unbearable crisis? Decisions about the nature of that change to come must be made by the citizenry, which seems to be fairly willing to face change when it gets its facts straight, rather than by wealthier nation-states and their leaders who seem, at this juncture, more interested in protecting business than life on Earth."