...vested interests cynically undermine public opinion while lobbying political interests. Exxon, the world’s largest oil company was warned by the Royal Society of London to stop funding climate change misinformation campaigns. The richest men in the world, the Koch brothers, have spent hundreds of millions of dollars lobbying, funding and undermining democratic institutions to weaken emission regulations. They and others are linked to dozens of front groups around the world subverting scientific consensus on climate change.
We’ve lived so long under the spell of hierarchy—from god-kings to feudal lords to party bosses—that only recently have we awakened to see not only that “regular” citizens have the capacity for self-governance, but that without their engagement our huge global crises cannot be addressed. The changes needed for human society simply to survive, let alone thrive, are so profound that the only way we will move toward them is if we ourselves, regular citizens, feel meaningful ownership of solutions through direct engagement. Our problems are too big, interrelated, and pervasive to yield to directives from on high.
—Frances Moore Lappé, excerpt from Time for Progressives to Grow Up