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Harvard Business School Professor, former Medtronic CEO

Jeffrey Sachs: The US Political System Is Incapable of Dealing with World Problems

Columbia Professor Jeffrey Sachs, Director of the Earth Institute, spoke on the economics of a crowded planet. 

The remarks—sober in tone—narrates a series of global crises related to a “bursting” planet filled with more people and more resource consumption per person than ever before. 

What is happening to the American political system?  It’s not only the global resources challenges, but we have clear failures of American politics that are contributing to the shocks we’re facing.  If you take a non-partisan, dispassionate view of it, our problems of governance extend for 20-25 years.  They are crippling thoughtful decision-making

Here are some highlights, as reported by those in the audience at the blogger hub:

  • @AndreaMeyer Sachs: when financial crisis hit, Chinese leadership immediately understood the decline of exports to US would be deep & swift #wbf09
  • @SethKahan: Sachs:This country is so awash in politics that it cannot make the decisions it needs to make
  • @rjmac: Sachs: Now, multipolar innovation in world. That means new ways to solve problems. #wbf09
  • @DonPeppers #wbf09 Jeffrey Sachs: Malthus redux. Get a grip Sachs. Technology is growing MUCH faster than even your worst resource projections
  • @rjmac The bursting planet compounds our economic problems, says Sachs, and will destroy climate in 30-40 yrs. #wbf09
  • @triplepundit Jeffrey Sachs – Even water is now a binding constraint in much of the world- #wbf09

And perhaps the best Tweet of the afternoon:

  • @ssmirnov: Rubenstein says we’re poor + Sachs says planet imploding, hoping George Lucas shares plans 4 Endor colonization at 5 pm #WBF09