"Duck and Cover", Atomic Age, Capitalism, Climate Change, Collapse of Industrial Civilization, Corporate State, Corporatocracy, Eco-Apocalypse, Empire, Environmental Collapse, Extinction of Man, Financial Elite, Frankenstorms, Fukushima Nuclear Disaster, Hiroshima and Nagasaki, Inverted Totalitarianism, Japan, Kevin Moore, Mahatma Gandhi, NSA Spying, Nurse Ratched, One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest, Runaway Climate Change, Security and Surveillance State, The Elite 1%, The Energy Skeptic, Wall Street Fraud, War for Profit, War on Terror
I haven’t kept up much on Fukushima because I find it too horrifying to contemplate; one quick look into this subject is enough to ruin your day. In a future of cascading failure, conceivably hundreds of nuclear meltdowns are in danger of being set off. The last breath of human life on Earth could be extinguished from such a toxic brew of radioactive isotopes. Thirty-one months after the nuclear catastrophe called Fukushima, this festering wound persists with hundreds of tons of radioactive water uncontrollably leaking into the Pacific each day and thousands of exposed fuel rods threatening to make Japan uninhabitable. In light of this ongoing manmade fiasco, I find it morbidly humorous that Japan has been chosen to host the 2020 Summer Olympics. It’s like planning a house party while the roof is ablaze and a sinkhole is opening up under the home’s foundation. But this seems to be par for the course for a species that has come to rely on technology as its steadfast savior. Only as this century draws to a close and the polar regions are seen as the last refuge for a depopulated planet will humans have finally realized that their precious technology served to extend human overshoot only for a brief time… and at the expense of making the inevitable crash that much worse.
Art by Charles Burns
There is no better way in determining the worth of a society than the kind of future it leaves for its children and future generations. As Mahatma Gandhi said, “You can judge a society by how they treat their weakest members.” Are not the unborn generations of our descendants the most helpless of all, voiceless and invisible to those making the reckless choices of today? By this measure, modern capitalist industrial civilization, notwithstanding its technological marvels and humanitarian achievements, would have to rank quite low when we look at the silent, lifeless wasteland that our present way of life is creating. The specter of climate change has replaced the Cold War psychic burden of a nuclear winter. The children of the Atomic Age had the naive “duck and cover” plan to escape that monster, but what plan do the kids have today for the horror of runaway climate change? As the Energy Skeptic recently discussed, climate change has destroyed many civilizations in the past and our globalized one will undoubtedly be no different. A doomsday date of 2047 was recently set for the cities of today’s world:
Hiroshima and Nagasaki suffered the barbarity of nuclear bombs, but these decimated cities were rebuilt. Climate Change will in time make all cities uninhabitable through flood, drought, scorching heat, fire, sea level rise, and continent-sized Frankentorms. There will be no rebuilding of such uninsurable cities. They’ll be left to wither away like the deindustrialzed and bankrupted city of Detroit. The lights will go out and stay out permanently in these ghost towns and ghost cities ravaged by an unstable biosphere. Climate refugees will strain the resources of countries and cause social unrest which may lead to more wars in the future. The response of our leaders at the helm of modern civilization is to build levees and dikes, geoengineer the planet, and bioengineer the food supply. None of these are adequate responses in the long run and only eat up finite resources that could go towards building a whole new way of life that is not under the dictate of Wall Street and disaster capitalism. Such solutions, however, are pipe dreams in a world so thoroughly controlled by the concentrated wealth of multinational corporations which are today’s feudal lords, their armed henchmen in the police state, and the insidious manipulation of public sentiment and behavior by corporate media and the security and surveillance state. I took it as ‘divine retribution’ when I read that the NSA has had a rash of electrical problems at its yet-to-be-completed data collection spy center.
So if the kids are feeling unmotivated and adrift in such a world, can they be blamed for wanting to drop out? Attention-deficit disorder and the epidemic of other behavioral problems that afflict the youth of today along with society’s knee-jerk response of medicating the misfits may just be another sign that things are far from alright in the world. Judging from the craziness of the people running the show, I’d say that capitalist industrial civilization has become one big insane asylum with the governments around the world acting as Nurse Ratched of “One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest”. Everyone must acquiesce to the rules of the corporate state:
1. Keep the masses distracted via internationalised sport, celebrity gossip and ‘news’ about mating success of caged animals and dogs that can ride surfboards.
2. Keep creating money out of thin air, lending it as zero interest to members of the club, and charging everyone else significant interest. Dilute the purchasing power of money on a continuous basis and call that process inflation.
3. Manipulate or fabricate economic data to create the illusion that everything is just fine.
4. Ensure that official planning (at least that which is public) ignores everything that will actually determine the future.
5. Conduct wars or covert operation as necessary to maintain the flow of resources from poor nations to rich nations.
6. Ensure wealth continues to be transferred from the less wealthy to the ultra-wealthy.”
~ Kevin Moore
“The best thing we can do is go on with our daily routine.” ~ Nurse Ratched