America’s Opposite Hand: Germany’s Parties Agree on the Necessity of Environmental Protection and a Green New Deal

“The political system pushes the parties toward the middle,” “party homogeneity is
rather weak” … in Germany’s antiquated libraries, students might pick up these
messages from text books about the U.S. political system. We all know that today’s
reality is a different one. Over the last twenty-five years or so, the U.S. electorate has
drifted further and further apart. The election of Ronald Reagan marks the beginning
of the U.S. shift to the right in the 1980s. The two Bush presidents and even Bill
Clinton—“it’s the economy, stupid!”—continued Reagan’s doctrine of the supremacy of
a preferably untamed capitalism. The chimera of “the invisible hand of the market” has
become an imperative of all political action, and arguably hit the “soft issue” of
environmental protection even more than others …

Download Publication

The views expressed are those of the author(s) alone. They do not necessarily reflect the views of the American Institute for Contemporary German Studies.

Alexander Ochs

SD Strategies

Alexander Ochs was a DAAD/AICGS Research Fellow in 2008. He is a sustainable development strategist. He is the CEO of the Berlin-based consultancy SD Strategies and Senior Director of Climate and Energy at the Worldwatch Institute in Washington, D.C. Alexander currently also acts as President of the Forum for Atlantic Climate and Energy Talks (FACET) and is Senior Fellow at Johns Hopkins University. He was a steering committee member of the Low Emission Development Global Partnership (LEDS GP) and is the Founding Chair of the LEDS GP Energy Working Group. Alexander also serves on the Clean Energy Solution Center’s expert roster and as an adviser to the German Government’s International Climate Initiative as well as a number of other international initiatives. In 2011, he received the Sustainable Future Award of the Austrian Academic Forum for Foreign Affairs.

Alexander researched and taught at Princeton University, CUNY, George Washington as well as Humboldt and Freie University in Berlin. He studied at the Universities of Cologne and Munich where he graduated with an M.A. in political science, philosophy and literature. He is fluent in German and English.