What helped bring America out of the Great Depression? WWII was certainly a factor: Making bombs, guns, tanks, and craft created an entire industrialized economy that wouldn’t have come together so fast or desperately if history didn’t rear its ugly head as it did.
It has been said we’re in a Great Recession, but we don’t have a national project on par with that of WWII. The times are very different, but the stakes are just as scary; ostensible global catastrophe. Let’s say American citizens and the powers that be underwent a several-tiered project that would get America off of oil & coal, and onto clean energy (non-nukes), over about the same timeframe as WWII – about five to six years.
I could see America withdrawing troops from oil-rich countries, to divert that money to R&D and new jobs for a New Energy Infrastructure. Among other areas the country could divert spending onto such an endeavor.
I could also see the gov’t hedging and rationing our current oil/coal surplus to make the transition barely noticeable (assuming we have enough, I don’t know the numbers).
Is a plan like this totally cockamamie, or could there be something to it, no matter how unrealistic it might be to actually push a national project like this through? If the politics weren’t so paralyzing, couldn’t we make a huge push such that we did during WWII, or even Eisenhower’s Interstate Highway System in the 50s? Shit, we landed on the Moon in less than a decade, because we could. Where’d our moxie go? Can we become a nation that could rely on ~90% clean energy (non-nukes) in five to six years?
(Major targets being: Cars, homes, mid-small businesses, etc.)