Clearly, there are many challenges we have to address, and most all of them — along with possible solutions — are covered in these books.
As you read the solutions, some things will seem like really big shifts away from what we are currently doing, while others will seem more like minor modifications.
Without question, the really big shifts can feel overwhelming, if not impossible, to achieve. But I believe there is a secret to pulling them off: We will be more successful if we do some of the really big shifts in coordination with one another, because the aggressive actions we need to take to shift one of the big challenges can sometimes soften the negative consequences that are caused by shifting the other.
Okay, that sounds like a lot, so let’s walk through an example. Take two of our most looming policy issues: Our national defense strategy and our energy policy.
Whether we like it or not — and regardless of what our personal opinions are on these two issues — major shifts in both areas are coming. Unfortunately, the difficult changes we need to make in our national defense and energy strategies have the potential to have a negative effect on many American lives and livelihoods.
Politicians are often dishonest about this inevitability — and most are masters at postponing the unpleasant — but, given the way both the basic facts and the world are evolving, these two shifts are going to happen sooner rather than later. It’s just the way it is.
The great news is that, if we are proactive, we can make the landing as soft as possible for those who may face hardships because of these changes. Believe me, it is far better to endure a little pain now — while we still have control over how to absorb it — than to live in denial until the music just stops and there aren’t enough chairs.