This Sustainable Life

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552: Hilary Link, part 2: colleges and universities talk sustainability but rarely act. This college president does.

Ep. 552

Hilary describes her commitments as achieving some success and some failure, but learned from both.

We start with her personal experiences and memories of ice skating and cross country skiing as a child leading to her sometimes painful lessons today. More than just ice skating again, she took lessons with her child. Listen to her for the lesson and why it was painful, but I'll share that she learned to wear a helmet.

She also talked about driving less, which led to what she could do with her community not to accept that not driving has to be hard, but how to improve the situation. She talked about eating less meat, which I heard creating more connection within family.

From the personal, we moved to the systemic. As the president of an august institution and connected to peers at peer organizations, she can influence within Allegheny and among university presidents and across academia. It's nice to talk about change and sustainability. It's nice to change institutions. But she points out, everyone sees what you do and your personal behavior affects others.

I don't think this episode is the last we'll hear of Dr. Link. I believe she'll implement some of the ideas that came up during her actions and this conversation. Stay tuned.

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5/10/2022

579: Derek Marshall, part 2: Running for Congress, sharing honest personal experiences

Ep. 579
You've heard every politician pay lip service on the environment. They talk abstractly about carbon dioxide levels, solutions to spend more money, and something about a future improved by electric cars and solar panels (conveniently missing how these "solutions" pollute). How many share their personal experiences? How many share their vulnerabilities we know they have?Derek shares his personal experience honestly facing environmental challenges himself. What does it feel like to see a plastic bag roll by in the wind like a tumbleweed in what was supposed to be in the middle of nowhere, untouched by people? How does it feel when humans' predominant effect on once-beautiful nature is poison? Do we face our feelings of helplessness, thereby enabling ourselves to do something about it, or deny and suppress them, claiming "solutions" that pollute actually clean, not because they do but because claiming they do mollifies our feelings?How do you run a campaign polluting less? What if your volunteers want pizza, but its disposable packaging pollutes? Will activating them to make preparing food part of the event engage them more? Will they enjoy local fruits and vegetables more? Can campaigning clean, boldly and honestly become a competitive advantage? If a campaigns ignores its personal impact, can you expect it will stop not caring after getting elected or will you expect it will find ways to excuse polluting after elected? Can Derek run his campaign clean to win loyalty and votes?Hear Derek face these challenges, the only way I see anyone can solve them.Derek's campaign page
5/3/2022

578: Warren Farrell, part 2: Sex, race, and intimacy: How to listen and communicate

Ep. 578
This episode is available on video.Before our conversations, I tended to see Warren as mainly focused on issues where men and boys suffer that society doesn't see, downplays, or ignores. I still see him as a rare luminary on such issues. As he mentions, many people, up to the White House, seem unable or unwilling to consider the possibility.But I'm seeing him focusing on solutions, both systemic and individual. We start this conversation on communication, especially about listening, especially in conflict. We transition to communication tips, especially for men and boys, using ourselves and our challenges as examples. I hear passion in him for helping couples, especially from a man's perspective. Not just passion, effectiveness.He shares about the origins of the Boy Crisis in society and the importance of effective communication, often lacking. We focus on suicide and rates between males and females versus between people of different races, children raised deprived of fathers, fathers whose responsibilities imposed by society force them to show their love by sacrificing time with family, which sounds heartbreaking for them, yet more so for their children. He explores the consequences to society.He describes how people exclude men and boys and our problems from considering helping us, even (especially) from groups promoting inclusion.I predict you'll find this episode evokes compassion and opens your eyes.