What role for reform? A reply to Parenti


Where we strongly disagree with Parenti is in his notion that such an enormous transformation in the structure of the economic and social order as is now required can be accomplished through what he presents as a mild, and thus necessarily slow, “reformist” strategy, relying primarily on the two proposals he advances: (1) using the power of the executive branch of the federal government in the United States to order the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to impose additional costs on fossil-fuel use through the Clean Air Act, and (2) ordering government agencies, presumably at the initiative of the White House, to use their purchasing power to “buy clean energy, electric vehicles, and retrofit buildings for energy conservation.” Based on such measures, Parenti contends, it is possible that “capitalism can transition off fossil fuels over the next several decades.”