Anyone who has spent time problem solving knows that working together with other people produces better results. When we work together we build stronger relationships, gain clarity and continuity, and produce better ideas. Unfortunately, as this article from the Guardian points out, we are living in an age of increased hyper-individualism and it may be doing us great harm.
This isn’t just about personal choice. We have become highly independent agents. Socially, we can choose where to live, who to congregate with. Politically, we have a wide variety of causes to get behind. Economically we have an unprecedented amount of choice. It sounds great, and many political movements, Neo-liberalism, Libertarianism, Populism, celebrate the individual in their own way (although members of those particular camps would resent being lumped together).
Sadly, ironically perhaps, they are missing the big picture. Humans do better when we work together.
Climate change is going to test us like no other challenge has. Acting independently, we can, and should, buy reusable coffee cups and LED light bulbs. We can ride our bikes to the grocery store where we will feel conflicted over organic vegetables wrapped in plastic. These decisions have less impact when our governments buy pipelines and corporations continue to produce more and more wasteful single use products. We will feel thwarted in our efforts to act responsibly by a system that relies on us consuming beyond the capacity of the environment.
We can solve these problems, despite the dysfunction created by Neo-liberalism by working together. Social action and political action are powerful tools for change.
Working Together with the Green Party
Cooperative problem solving is a vital part of Green Party of Canada policies. In fact the GPC runs their conventions using consensus-building techniques, promotes proportional representation, and believes in cooperative, not conflict-driven, government.