Arab Spring, Collapse of Industrial Civilization, Daniel Quinn, Destruction to Food Supply, Ecological Overshoot, Environmental Collapse, Financial Elite, Frederick Engels, Gross Inequality, Inverted Totalitarianism, Methane Fields, Neoliberal Capitalism, Occupy Wall Street, Social Unrest, The Elite 1%
I think we can safely shorten that time span to no more than 50 years. Right now I’m with my family, so postings will be light to nonexistent until the beginning of October when I will essentially be in seclusion once again to read more often and study the state of the world. As I write this post, one particular story that stands out is the discovery by Russian scientists of ‘methane fields’ exceeding 1 kilometre escaping from the Laptev Sea, as elaborated upon by Arctic News. In the views of these scientists, methane plumes like the ones they are observing could be catastrophic to this planet’s climate. Other than some obscure website, is anyone talking about the destruction to our food supply that climate change will surely bring about? Make no mistake, this is real news as opposed to the MSM’s three-ring political circus or the perverse reporting of decadent Hollywood parties to toast the christening of a new luxury jaguar car.
Many scientists are saying that the only thing that will save us is global coordinated action and a Manhatten project of geoengineering to halt any further damage from our CO2 emissions and its catastrophic impact on the environment. Others have lamented the total failure of governments to look after the well-being of their people:
Fossil fuel companies are still making profits despite the fact that climate change is so clearly upon us. Our politicians are putting corporate interests above scientific warnings and failing in their duties to the public.”
The Arab Spring and Occupy Wall Street were initially grassroots movements which evolved as a response to the gross social inequalities of neoliberal capitalism. Washington inadvertently created both movements through their push of the aforementioned economic policies which have made a few extremely wealthy at the expense of those country’s populations. In the near future, the issue of corporate profits over the environment will become a driving force for future social unrest and revolt.
In the end, our ill-conceived exchange of fossil fuels for a stable biosphere will be worse than a zero-sum game when you take into account the hell that climate change will wreak. On our present course, we will be left with an uninhabitable planet. We have only seen the beginning inklings of what human-induced disasters such as drought, ocean acidification, deforestation, and mass species extinction will mean to industrial civilization which has become completely delusional about its “victory” over nature:
Let us not, however, flatter ourselves overmuch on account of our human victories over nature. For each such victory nature takes its revenge on us. Each victory, it is true, in the first place brings about the results we expected, but in the second and third places it has quite different, unforeseen effects which only too often cancel the first. The people who, in Mesopotamia, Greece, Asia Minor and elsewhere, destroyed the forests to obtain cultivable land, never dreamed that by removing along with the forests the collecting centres and reservoirs of moisture they were laying the basis for the present forlorn state of those countries. When the Italians of the Alps used up the pine forests on the southern slopes, so carefully cherished on the northern slopes, they had no inkling that by doing so they were cutting at the roots of the dairy industry in their region; they had still less inkling that they were thereby depriving their mountain springs of water for the greater part of the year, and making it possible for them to pour still more furious torrents on the plains during the rainy seasons. Those who spread the potato in Europe were not aware that with these farinaceous tubers they were at the same time spreading scrofula. Thus at every step we are reminded that we by no means rule over nature like a conqueror over a foreign people, like someone standing outside nature — but that we, with flesh, blood and brain, belong to nature, and exist in its midst, and that all our mastery of it consists in the fact that we have the advantage over all other creatures of being able to learn its laws and apply them correctly.” ~ Frederick Engels
The Earth giveth and she taketh away. Short-sightedness, greed, and conceit are traits undeserving of long-term survival on this once generous but now scorned planet.
Paul f. Getty said:
The brain power of humanity is immense. Each of our brains has huge computing power, and they all are linked via language. Add to that all the computers of the world, all linked together by the Internet and linked to our own brains by keyboards and screens, and it becomes clear that the global computing power is gigantic.
And yet with all this, we stumble along toward our obvious tragic demise as if we are blind to all the warnings of danger ahead. The information and analyses of coming catastrophes are at our fingertips, but we are, well, uninterested!
TWENTY YEARS OF CO2 EMISSIONs – and that doesn’t count the methane they now think is trapped in Antarctica, as well
“The record hasn’t just been broken, it’s been smashed to smithereens, adding weight to predictions that the Arctic may be ice-free in summer months within 20 years, say British, Italian and American-based scientists on board the Arctic Sunrise. They are shocked at the speed and extent of the ice loss.
The Cambridge University Sea ice researcher Nick Toberg, who has analysed underwater ice thickness data collected by British nuclear submarine HMS Tireless in 2004 and 2007, said: “This is staggering. It’s disturbing, scary that we have physically changed the face of the planet. We have about 4m sq km of sea ice. If that goes in the summer months that’s about the same as adding 20 years of CO2 at current [human-caused] rates into the atmosphere. That’s how vital the arctic sea ice is.”
Paul f. Getty said:
PBS, supposedly a bastion of liberal journalism, presented us with information that tells its viewers that probably scientists have been blowing it all out of proportion. Joe Romm writes in ClimateProgress:
In short, a Koch-funded study has found that the IPCC “consensus” underestimated both the rate of surface warming and how much could be attributed to human emissions!
Now this underselling could have been the basis of an interesting story, but PBS decided to turn this into a pure he-said/she-said between “skeptics” and “believers,” as they label the two “sides” — destroying any possible chance of delivering actual scientific information to its audience.
Check it out:
From January 14, 1989:
Paul f. Getty said:
23 years ago… We could have done so much in those years!
And from 1956:
Damn! You’d think humans would have gotten a clue by now.