This Sustainable Life

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386: Bob Inglis, part 1: the EcoRight, a balance to the Environmental Left

Ep. 386

Everyone can lead when everyone around them agrees. How about when your conscience tells you what's right differs from everyone around you?

Bob Inglis is a former Congressman from South Carolina---the reddest district in the reddist state, as he puts it. The short story is that he stated he believed the science behind climate change. That was ten years ago. They voted him out.

You'll hear in this episode the story of how he transformed to take such a risk, how he responded, and what's come since. Last month he "endorsed Joe Biden for president Monday, arguing the Democratic nominee will help stabilize American politics and restore the country’s institutions."

I'm linking to his two TEDx talks, a Frontline interview, and his new organization, RepublicEN, which I recommend no matter your political views. I consider acting on your values leadership. I've met or heard of few people who have led on sustainability as much as Bob. Many people on the left talk about it, but haven't led---that is, they've mostly spoken to people who already agreed with them. They haven't worked with hearts and minds.

Most of us want to act on ours but hold ourselves back. I bet you'll find him a role model for actions you've held back on, whether related to nature or elsewhere in life.

We talk about meaning, purpose, and faith. I hope we can wrestle the wedge from those at the poles of our polarized society, as Bob spoke at the end.


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1/15/2021

428: Vanessa Friedman: The New York Times Fashion Director and Chief Fashion Critic

Ep. 428
Vanessa Friedman sees the fashion world from a vantage point few others can as the Fashion Director and Chief Fashion Critic at the New York Times. She arrived there after pioneering roles covering fashion at Financial Times in a first-ever role there, InStyle, Vogue, Vanity Fair, the New Yorker, and Elle.She shares the industry's forays into sustainability---or responsible fashion in her terms---as well as sharing her thoughts on it.Right off the bat she talked about reducing consumption, which I differentiate from reusing and recycling, which most people jump to, but I consider tactical. Reducing is strategic. Harder to get at first, but leads to easier life and work.I was awkward, as I don't know the fashion world, but you can hear from her that environmental responsibility is catching on in fashion. Barely so far, but in some places at least authentically and growing. It looks like there's hope in the industry, though they have a long way to go, a lot of resistance, and many players acting in the opposite direction.I'm also glad to hear Vanessa's personal attention, thoughtfulness, interest, which all sounded heartfelt, thorough, and genuine. At the New York Times she's at a leverage point so I suspect she will influence. I like that celebrities are acting because, however small that change, they influence others. I believe they can help change culture.How Vanessa Friedman Became One of the Foremost Critics in the Fashion Industry