If I were going to suggest a series of books that President Barack Obama and his administration read it would be three novels by Kim Stanley Robinson. It is a tale set in a world with rapid climate change dominating the political, scientific and economic spheres and proposes some bold solutions to our most pressing problems.
I think this is perhaps the most visionary writing of my lifetime.
The series is too deep and covers too much territory to really disect in a blog, but I would be interested in anyone who read the series to share their thoughts about the world it envisions. Did anyone else think that an involved American populace can help Barack Obama govern like Phil Chase? Did anyone else think that an America where the president had a blog and actually incorporated his constituents ideas into his governing philosophy is actually more possible now that ever before?
Did anyone else finish this series of brilliant novels and think: It’s not too late. We can actually use this generational shift in presidential politics and a governing majority to incorporate all of the book’s reactive solutions into a proactive strategy for our American Renaissance.
Can we think creatively and sustainably and with a vision for seven generations?
I think so.
We really have no choice.
That’s what I’ve been saying since last summer when I read the Science in the Capitol series. It’s utterly brilliant. Phil Chase for president!
Well, we have Barack Obama this year, but I am certainly going to do my damnedest to help him govern like Chase. It is brilliant. I want to read the mars series now. Thanks for the pointer to Kos. I’ll check that out.
BTW, if you go over to DailyKos an search this, you can see the discussions we’ve had on this series last summer.
Have you read this book, Jason?
I’ve steered away because a friend told me it was really fragmented and unsatisfying. I take it you would not concur?
I liked his Mars trilogy, although I now seem to recall that one of those also had fragmentation problems. I loved Years of Rice and Salt.
This is the only feature-length fiction I have read by Robinson, though read a lot of shorter stuff in the 80s and 90s.
I thought it was fabulous and can’t really point to any specific fragmentation problems. Perhaps it is because his stories are so complex that can’t help but a few story-lines that fall through the cracks or can’t be adequately run down. I guess if I thought really hard I could come up with some criticisms, but mostly it was just great writing that will be prescient if we don’t get off our asses.
I loved all three books. I heard Years of Rice and Sand was pretty good. From what I understand, the Forty Sign of Rain series was the creative and logical off-shoot of that book.
Dear God. I feel I’ve found my tribe.