Kickin’ ’em You Know Where?

Accountability Personal leadership


Thomas L Friedman, NYT columnist and author of The World is Flat, writes in his June 11 Sunday “Week in Review” op-ed, an interesting piece. He refers to a personal letter by a friend of Tom’s, sent to the editor of The Beaufort Gazette in South Carolina, which states essentially that the Gulf Spill ultimately comes from choices you and I make. Blaming BP, the government or any other group for the macro issue is fruitless. That may sound ridiculous when we think about how far removed the vast majority of us are from drilling a well thousands of feet deep. However, we the people established the conditions where we frankly have been and continue to be committed to living off the cheapest oil we can get as our primary source of energy. Of course we expect people to execute the energy supply chain responsibly but our unwillingness to really change the oil paradigm is a bilateral fact. Friedman makes the self accountability argument. We need to take control over what and how we personally take action. Some of it is smaller and in our immediate sphere (e.g. getting rid of our gas guzzlers, planting a garden, supporting the buy local/slow money initiatives). Other action is less direct but equally important, demanding that we pass an energy reform bill that dramatically reduces dependence on Mid-East oil.

The above is not a political argument for one thing or another but a plea for self accountability and forward action. Blame by itself changes nothing and we end up getting kicked where it hurts.

with Character,