6th Mass Extinction, Capitalism, Climate Change, Collapse of Industrial Civilization, Consumerism, Corporate State, Corporatocracy, Eco-Apocalypse, Ecological Overshoot, Economic Growth, Empire, Environmental Collapse, Extinction of Man, Financial Elite, Gross Inequality, Inverted Totalitarianism, Mass Die Off, Mike Sosebee, Military Industrial Complex, Overpopulation, Peak Oil, Peak Water, Resource Wars, Security and Surveillance State, The Elite 1%, unwashed public, Wall Street Fraud
This grimly humorous video comes from Mike Sosebee. A small percentage of us just can’t drink the kool-aid and prefer cold, hard reality over the myth telling and Madison Avenue song-and-dance of capitalist industrial civilization. The entire American hologram is dependent on the masses buying the illusion that all is well. Don’t look behind the curtain. There’s a mountain of corpses and ecological horrors hiding behind that thin veneer of our self-reassuring stories… stories about our
corporatocracy democracy, our corporate scripted independent news media, our resource-plundering ‘freedom fighting’ military, our exploitive and destructive wealth-building economy, our move towards a “green-washed” sustainable lifestyle, etc. As commenter Dopamine says, we’re on “a dopamine drip line, a natural morphine intravenous of belief that obscures the less rewarding reality of your existence. That humans are going to turn things around is another belief assuaging the fact that our families have to spend the next hundred years walking through a minefield from which many will not emerge, and for those that do make it, there awaits a planet wasted… And we are completely unable to avoid this perilous journey because our brains quickly substitute a “feel good” fantasy whenever we venture too far into the darkness of our reality. We will walk into the darkness surrounded by pink unicorns, omnipotent Gods, visions of unspoiled paradises, the overflowing font of fusion and so on…”
Although colonizing and enslaving foreign lands and people have always been the modus operandi of this country, I’m sure the elites who founded America never could have imagined that their 1% successors would be able to manipulate the social discourse and behavior of nearly 400 million with consumer goods called TV’s and computers, nor could they have imagined the future Malthusian conditions that would eventually end not only the brief experiment of America, but the entire human experience on planet Earth. When Easter Island became uninhabitable, the rest of the planet never noticed, but now the human footprint will be felt in every nook and cranny of Earth for millennium. Paleontologist Louise Leakey, granddaughter of famed archeologist and naturalist Louis Leakey, uses the analogy of a roll of toilet paper to effectively illustrate the brief but devastatingly influential reign of mankind over the planet.
…To put the history of life on planet earth into a time perspective, imagine unrolling a toilet roll down a hillside. If there are 400 sheets of tissue paper in the roll, then the very first life in the oceans is seen at sheet 240. The age of the dinosaurs begins at sheet 19. Dinosaurs in their many forms and great diversity are around for 14 and a half sheets. Dinosaurs are extinct by the end of the Cretaceous, 5 squares from the end, making way for the mammals. Our story and place on the timeline as upright walking apes begins only in the last half of the very last sheet. The human story as Homo sapiens, is represented by less than 2 millimeters of this, some 200,000 years.
Our own individual lifetimes cannot be depicted on this final sheet of the toilet roll as it would be too thin a line, yet we have been witness to more change to the planet, to the diversity of life, global climate and natural habitats in this same time period. We are undoubtedly the cause of the sixth mass extinction event that the planet has seen in its history…
“Doomer”, as in someone concerned with apocalyptic scenarios of global collapse, is definitely a term of modern usage reflecting the growing unease of the population. People who eschew the word “collapse” in favor of “decline” seem to be hoping that the road ahead will be gentle, predictable and somewhat manageable rather than violent, erratic, and uncontrollable. With homo economicus locked into the infinite growth mantra, there appears to be no other outcome other than a sudden crashing into the fast-approaching wall of environmental limits. The aftermath will be as unrecognizable as the mangled metal of a 100 MPH car crash rather than the slow deterioration and failure of a heavily driven automobile. Oh but that’s too horrible of a thought for the masses to entertain, especially since it threatens our tranquil dreams of white picket-fenced homes with well manicured lawns. Things will be as they always have been, with only minor changes or uncertainties. The dopamine drip line is not in danger of running dry any time soon, and as things deteriorate more and more, the dosage of self-delusional drugs will be increased, lest the population starts to wake up from their stupor. The religious fanatic and mass murderer Jim Jones doesn’t hold a candle to the psychos at the helm of capitalist industrial civilization.
Paul F Getty said:
Here is a very influential writer.
He says in this essay that he thinks tackling global warming is a good thing.
But then tells us the world isn’t warming. And that this is a terrible time to make changes. And slowing coal use will be disastrous to states that produce coal.
This is why there is no hope,
His IV of dopamine is firmly attached and flowing, administering the correct dosage of hopium and story-telling to his TV-addled mind.
Kevin Moore said:
“Son, what do want to do when you leave school.”
“I’ve thought about becoming a professional liar. What do you think?”
“Excellent! Politician? Journalist? Economist? Advertising executive? Lawyer? There are plenty of occupations to choose from, most of them very lucrative.”
I sincerely believe most of the Human race could not face up to the reality of the dire situation we’re in without a serious decline in mental health. They’d be mass depression, and panic. One good result it would discourage us from producing more and more humans. This knowledge could even lead to the end of our current civilisation which is doomed anyway. I confess I retreat myself into the hologram lots as reality is incredibly psychically painful it kills any joy in life. Being almost 65 I don’t have lots of time left. Especially the destruction of the Ocean life and the vicious destruction of the market is depressing. Instance: The elephant might become extinct because of the demand for ivory from China! No one seems able to stop it! 😦 We’re a species of locust totally out of control stripping the Earth, it should have been different. But our true primitive nature is shown by all the wars we fight with one another and we still glorify the killing!
It seems that we write in invisible ink and very few have a functioning decoder brain to illuminate the relationships that exist in our words. They fall back into their fantastic beliefs and begin singing tunes for emotional consolation. Study the organic molecular world and see your own civilization for what it is, a renegade, unshackled from the body to grow uncontrollably, becoming nothing but a consumer and disruptor of the tissues from which it arose. The king cancers of capitalism chart their course throughout the body, their ravenous cells breaking free to establish beachheads in previously disease free areas. Their goal is to begin the process of extraction and growth, the destruction of the natural order, refined over billions of years, in favor of temporary tumorous plaques designed to deliver massive doses of dopamine to the craving egos within their childishly simple minds. All of our efforts are focused upon “growth” and “living forever”, just like our molecular and cellular counterparts in their diseased bodies. We will end ourselves like they do.
Paul F Getty said:
The micro organisms are so much a vital part of our lives, and we barely have a clue to their complexity and how our meddling in the environment and climate can affect them.
Here is just one example:
But, of course, the planet is becoming warmer with each decade. “By using our data with current climate models, we can predict that in 50 years, the cyanobacterium that fares better in warm temperatures will push the cold-loving one off our map,” said Professor Garcia-Pichel.
“M. steenstrupii could completely dominate the crusts everywhere in our study area by then. Unfortunately we don’t know much about this microbe or what will happen to the ecosystem in the absence of M. vaginatus.”
“This study tells us we can no longer neglect microbes in our considerations”
The real hazard, for humans and other creatures that depend on cyanobacteria – and that adds up to all life on Earth – is that there is likely to be a knock-on effect on soil fertility, and soil erosion: it is the “living crusts” formed by these microbes that in many places hold the soil together, and sometimes researchers try to combat cases of severe erosion by injecting these cyanobacteria into the dust to act as soil stabilisers.
The finding is ominous: but an omen of what? Once again, researchers have unearthed – to use an appropriate metaphor – evidence of the intricacy of the connections between air, water, rock, temperature, life and climate.
– See more at: http://www.rtcc.org/global-warming-could-wipe-out-tiny-building-blocks-of-life/#sthash.VGDafl30.dpu
Kevin Moore said:
“The word doomsayer carries with it just about every negative connotation possible; yet when I look up the word doom in my dictionary, it provides me with the following definitions: 1) a judgement, especially of condemnation. 2) fate. 3) ruin or death.’ So doom is a particularly appropriate word for our present situation, since many of the ill effects we are experiencing are, in a sense a judgement, Nature’s condemnation of humanity. ”
That was published in 2001.
‘Nobody’ took any notice. ‘Nobody’ cared. Other than a tiny handful of people, nobody did anything to prevent absolute catastrophe engulfing the whole of humanity Indeed, most of the maniacs who are in control have done everything possible [over the past 12 years] to bring forward catastrophe for humanity (along with most other vertebrate species)..
Will humanity finally pay attention and change direction?
No, because the prime criterion that determines government policy is protection of the Ponzi scheme. ( I didn’t know that in 2001. We live and learn.)
Paul Getty said:
In 2001 I was a dad of a 12 year old and a 7 year old, husband of a wife stretched too far in too many ways
Sent from my iPad
Paul F Getty said:
Published on Monday, July 8, 2013 by TruthDig.com
We Are All Aboard the Pequod
by Chris Hedges
“We, like Ahab and his crew, rationalize madness. All calls for prudence, for halting the march toward environmental catastrophe, for sane limits on carbon emissions, are ignored or ridiculed. Even with the flashing red lights before us, the increased droughts, rapid melting of glaciers and Arctic ice, monster tornadoes, vast hurricanes, crop failures, floods, raging wildfires and soaring temperatures, we bow slavishly before hedonism and greed and the enticing illusion of limitless power, intelligence and prowess. We believe in the eternal wellspring of material progress. We are our own idols. Nothing will halt our voyage; it seems to us to have been decreed by natural law. “The path to my fixed purpose is laid with iron rails, whereon my soul is grooved to run,” Ahab declares. We have surrendered our lives to corporate forces that ultimately serve systems of death. Microbes will inherit the earth.”
Kevin Moore said:
Chris Hedges is a great social critic.
Nobody takes any notice of him either.
I prefer the Titanic analogy: the rudder is welded into position and it’s full speed ahead, straight into the iceberg. Most of us are below deck, locked in.
The good news is, this mad system cannot go on forever. Every day that passes the system damages itself as well as damaging the planet.
We will know in a few weeks whether this year’s Arctic meltdown will be worse than last year’s. After a long period of slow melt, the melt rate seems to have recently gone into ‘hyper-drive’.
Paul F Getty said:
Yes, he is one of the great writers and thinkers of our times.
But the corporatocracy wants to muffle his words, and so his thoughts are not carried by any widely distributed venues. You have to search for him, and only those with a like mind will tend to do that, find him, and read him. Our controllers can accept that.
If you send his essays to someone who is not of a like mind, their eyes glaze over as they read it. It doesn’t make much sense and would seem far too “out there” for them. Their normal sources of information are so far from what Hedges is saying that the average person just can’t connect with his stuff.
And that is how the corporatocracy likes it. This kind of censorship and propaganda and thought manipulation is far more effective than a total ban of journalism that takes place in places like the Soviet Union, because here the average Americans feels sure that he gets all the news and truth from the media and doesn’t feel the need to search the underground for the real story.
That’s a pretty good definition of “inverted totalitarianism”. The corporations rule in anonymity as the façade of “democracy” is propped up by all the corrupted government institutions and the news media who are in the back pockets of the multinational corporations.
Iraq was a good example of disaster capitalism in which a case for war was spun in order for the war profiteers (Blackwater, K.B.R.-Halliburton, CACI and Titan) to milk their profits from the U.S. taxpayer. Resource plundering took place on a grand scale while the American plebs back in the homeland waved their flags and repeated the lie of “WMD and terrorists” ingrained in their head by the mainstream media. It doesn’t matter that China is getting most of the oil as long as that resource was put on the chopping block of the global market. Besides, the Chinese middle class are the new consumers the corporations want to exploit.
Now we have climate change as yet another big example of disaster capitalism with Monsanto and its genetically modified crops which are supposed to be essential in adapting our food production to the catastrophic effects of climate chaos. And of course geoengineering is in the works as a technological fix to the manmade problem of using the atmospheric commons as a garbage sink for fossil fuel burning. Then there are all manner of “green products” which only serve to extend the illusion that mass consumerism can be made “sustainable” and can go on forever.
The truth is that capitalist industrial civilization is not even nibbling around the edges of the problem of human ecological overshoot, a solution to which would require a radical reconfiguration of society and the economy in order to truly save ourselves. Of course the interests of the corporatocracy override such stark realities. Extend and pretend is the only game plan our elite have.
Kevin Moore sez: “I prefer the Titanic analogy: the rudder is welded into position and it’s full speed ahead, straight into the iceberg. Most of us are below deck, locked in.”
Both analogies — Pequod and Titanic — are useful but in different ways. As I understand it, Melville’s story is more about individual obsession and madness driving a small group to ruin. The sheer insanity of it is more clearly presented, though it also functions as metonymy for the entire culture. And because it’s fiction, details can be shaped to suit the author’s intent. The Titanic, being a real-life event, seems to me less about straight-up madness and more about hubris: charging ahead into the unknown. The detail about the second- and third-class passengers being locked below deck is instructive, as our leadership clearly has plans for us once anticipated catastrophes begin in earnest.
I’ve written elsewhere about how metaphor is a structural component of language and therefore thought. Lots of metaphors are blended and mixed; none are perfectly suited to fit all needs. So we use metaphor to assist in our understanding, knowing that poetics and figuration often communicate better than cold, reported fact.
Michael Sosebee said:
“…we use metaphor to assist in our understanding, knowing that poetics and figuration often communicate better than cold, reported fact.” That’s right. We’ve known for a long time that most of us make decisions and form conclusions primarily based on group pressure. Propoganda works.
I wrote a pan of the film “World War Z” the other day and Gail Zawacki pointed out that the “visceral reality of overpopulation” was brought clearly home by the overwhelming volume of zombies as metaphor. No need for actual extras though. CGI can make them by the millions. Like a childs video game. At the end of the film they were dropping aerial ordinance on zombies who’ve been herded into sports stadiums and the audience cheered.
This convenient metaphor creates an “other” allowing the privileged groups to respond appropriately to an existential crisis: overpopulation. You can be sure the cutthroats at the helm see the problem clearly: too many people. They have answers to the problem that you and I might disagree with and the “Zombies” definitely won’t like it. But we never counted as far as I could tell. We were there to be the over-seers, clerks and accountants.
“In the event of war I’m a hostage.” Woody Allen
Capitalism’s number one dictate: “Grow or Die”.
Kevin Moore said:
Egypt’s oil extraction peaked in 1993. Egypt’s population has continued to rise since 1993, and Egypt cannot feed itself, importing around half its food, I believe.
Oil receipts paid for a large portion of imports. Sure, the price of oil has risen dramatically. But so has the price of food.
So now Egypt finds itself in a hole, just like most other nations, working hard every day to dig the hole deeper.
The advantage TPTB in Egypt have is that they can murder several million ‘peasants’ who protest in the streets (or whatever) and not notice much difference. The population is around 84 million, up about 30 million since the year of peaking of oil extraction.
The disadvantage Egypt has is that it cannot send its military to the US to steal oil from there.. It can print money to pay for imports of food and consumer goods, but nowhere near as successfully as the US does.
Egypt A Peak Oil Revolution
Paul F Getty said:
I was in Egypt in 1980, via the Navy. It had some 40 million people then. The whole country is a vast desert except a tiny strip along the Nile and a bit of fertile land in the south. I realized then it is an impossible situation. Now it is doubly so.
The region was once fertile with grasslands and trees, brooks and ponds. Early man roamed its lands of abundant food and water. It isn’t a place for millions and millions now. A breakdown in shipping and energy and food from other places will almost instantly create a hell on earth of hunger, disease, violence, and death.
And are we really so much different in Europe and America?
Kevin Moore said:
Arguably, the most important action on the economic front lies with bonds and interest rates.
Interest rates have been driven down over a period of 30 years. In many parts of ‘the system’ interest rates are close to zero, so-called ZIRP.
Close-to-zero interest has failed to stimulate economic growth via cheap money flowing into the general economy. But it has clobbered yield and fueled another round of speculative bubbles.
Interest rates can do one of two things: stay close to zero or rise.
Continuing close-to-zero crushes pension funds and savers. Rising interest rates crush government.
Kevin Moore said:
And now this, on top of all the other stuff:
China warns of grim trade outlook after surprise 3% fall in exports
Figures defy expectations and likely to raise fresh concerns about extent of slowdown in economy and global demand
guardian.co.uk, Wednesday 10 July 2013 07.57 BST
Shipping containers at a port in Ningbo
China’s exports fell 3.1% in June from a year ago, the first decline since January 2012. Photograph: William Hong/Reuters
China has warned of a grim outlook for trade as the world’s second-largest economy surprised financial markets by reporting a fall in exports and imports when both had been expected to rise.
The figures, which follow a government crackdown on the use of fake invoicing that had exaggerated exports earlier this year, are likely to raise fresh concerns about the extent of the slowdown in the economy and global demand.
The June data, showing that exports fell 3.1% from a year earlier and imports dropped 0.7%, may now reflect the true trade picture, customs officials said.
“China faces relatively stern challenges in trade currently,” customs spokesman Zheng Yuesheng told a news briefing. “Exports in the third quarter look grim.”
The customs agency said exporters were losing confidence in the face of weak overseas demand, rising labour costs and a strong yuan currency.
The export fall was the first since January 2012. Economists had expected exports to increase 4.0% and imports to rise 8.0%.
China’s trade data is volatile and has been distorted by speculative capital flows across the country’s border. Doubts about the accuracy of the figures had abated slightly since the customs office and top foreign exchange regulator launched a campaign in May to crack down on fake export invoices.
Fake invoicing inflated China’s official import and export totals by $75bn (£50bn) in the first four months of 2013, local media reported on 14 June, citing an internal review by China’s commerce ministry.
The customs data showed that exports to the United States, China’s biggest export market, fell 5.4%, while exports to the European Union dropped 8.3%.
“The surprisingly weak June exports show China’s economy is facing increasing downward pressure on lacklustre external demand,” said Li Huiyong, an economist at Shenyin & Wanguo Securities in Shanghai.
“Exports are facing challenges in the second half of this year. The appreciation of the US dollar and the Chinese government’s recent crackdown on speculative trade activities also put pressure on exports.”
China had a trade surplus of $27.1bn in June, the customs administration said, largely in line with the $27bn expected by economists.
China’s reform-minded new leaders have shown a tolerance of slower growth, although they still need to avoid widespread job losses that could threaten social stability.
Economists expect data next week to show that annual growth in China for the April-June quarter slowed down to 7.5%.
A continued slide in growth could test leaders’ resolve to tolerate a short-term slowdown in the economy while pressing ahead with efforts to revamp the economy for the longer term.
Paul F Getty said:
I don’t understand the rise in stocks with all of this grim outlook.
Vacation in China!
and after your refreshing swim, eat hearty!
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