'Sustainable' Rules the Web; Ideas of Endurance Proliferate Daily

The Washington Times (Washington, DC), August 16, 2010 | Go to article overview

'Sustainable' Rules the Web; Ideas of Endurance Proliferate Daily


Byline: Frank Perley, THE WASHINGTON TIMES

Suddenly, sustainable is the catchword of the moment. A Google search of the word extracts 72.5 million entries in .32 second. For everything we do, it seems there is a sustainable method for doing it and an organization to tell us how.

Interested in a sustainable building? There's the Holcim Foundation for Sustainable Construction, with the mission to select and support initiatives that combine sustainable construction solutions with architectural excellence and enhanced quality of life beyond technical solutions.

Intrigued by the thought of eating sustainably? Welcome to the Sustainable Table, which celebrates local sustainable food, educates consumers on food-related issues and works to build community through food.

If you want your news to reflect sustainability, there's the SustainabiliTank, which bills itself as a source for sustainable development media that you can trust.

For those enthusiastic for the sustainable in the extreme, there is a Volkswagen Beetle modified to run on human waste: On first hearing of the Bio-Bug, some people will smile, and some people will go 'yuck'! . . . What I hope they realize is that this is exactly the kind of innovation we now need for a more sustainable world, said Jonathon Porritt, founding director of Forum for the Future, to the International Business Times.

The Merriam-Webster dictionary defines sustainable as of, relating to, or being a method of harvesting or using a resource so that the resource is not depleted or permanently damaged. What's not to like about that?

With sustainable all over the Web, apparently some have not been surfing lately, including President Obama. By all indications, his interests run toward all things unsustainable. Actually, unsustainable is not exactly absent from the Internet, harvesting 9.7 million Google entries in .21 second.

Mr. Obama seems to be fascinated with unsustainable spending. Last year, he (with help from fellow congressional Democrats and a few Republicans) signed an $800 billion economic stimulus bill that was to create or save 3.5 million jobs and keep unemployment under 8 percent. It didn't work that way and, instead, led to a budget deficit of $1.4 trillion this year and a projected deficit of another $1.4 trillion next year. Thanks to Mr. Obama and his overspending supporters, each U.S. taxpayer is responsible for paying off $120,006 of the national debt. That kind of fiscal extravagance is unsustainable.

Also apparently unperturbed by the unsustainable are members of Congress responsible for the financial health of Social Security and Medicare. The trustees of those government programs released their annual report Aug. 5, which said Social Security is continuing to hurdle toward the cliff of insolvency and is expected to get there by 2037. Medicare is due to go broke in 2029 - 12 years later than expected - the report noted triumphantly, because of cost-cutting measures in the recently passed Obamacare bill. …

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