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Cannavo Op-ed Appears in The Seattle Times

By Vige Barrie  |  Contact Vige Barrie 315-859-4623
Posted January 28, 2009
Tags Government Hamilton In the News Peter Cannavo
Assistant Professor of Government Peter Cannavo co-authored an opinion piece titled "Some ideas for President Obama's call to sacrifice" which appeared in The Seattle Times during the week of Jan. 23. Written with University of Washington Associate Professor of Political Science Karen Litfin, the op-ed asks "Can the 80 percent of humanity living in developing countries ever hope to live the American dream as we have known it? The disturbing, simple, and clear answer is: No. What, then, of sacrifice, a complex, ambiguous term conjuring up everything from the bloody altar to the noblest selflessness?"

The authors advise, "Even as we rebuild our economy and help those who have lost houses and jobs, we must cultivate a way of life that recognizes our planetary interdependence. In terms of policy, this means more than funding renewable energy and green buildings. The federal government must use its leverage with automakers to promote a fundamental shift toward carbon-free vehicles. Federal infrastructure initiatives must focus on mass transit and reviving inner cities and older suburbs rather than on new roads and more sprawl. Farm policy must support local, sustainable agriculture rather than energy-intensive agribusinesses.

"We must share our wealth and technological expertise with developing countries so that they can overcome poverty and leapfrog to a green industrial revolution. Finally, our nation as a whole must show courage, wisdom, and moral commitment by actively phasing out our fossil-fuel consumption, through a fair and progressive carbon tax that does not unduly burden middle- and lower-income families."

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