By John Lawrence / San Diego Free Press
Ever since the Enlightenment, progress has been essential to civilization. Defined as steady improvement toward a goal, the progress of society or civilization has been synonymous with growth, inventions, growing gross domestic product.
The very US Constitution was a testament to the Enlightenment era notion of progress. Science and technology would create the conditions for the “pursuit of happiness.” Every day in every way human society would get better and better. Only now we’re at a crossroads where the very idea of progress and in particular continued progress is contributing to the destruction of the planet.
The more progress we have, the more growth of GDP, the more greenhouse gases (GHGs) are spewed into the atmosphere and the more our planetary ecology is corrupted. Progress as we’ve known it must come to a screeching halt or the planet is in jeopardy of becoming uninhabitable by the human species.