Volatility

October 12, 2018

A Note on Animals and Greenhouse Gases

<

These are part of the ecology, not against it

 
 
The ecological crisis is complex, but here’s one basic rule of thumb: If the land can assimilate the animals and/or crops, if waste doesn’t accumulate, then you’re ecologically sound as far as that goes. But as soon as waste begins to accumulate your practice has become unsound and destructive. This applies to crops just as much as to animals.
 
Depending on the circumstance and how well organized people are, the scope of the land can be one farm, or several co-operating farms, or a tight-knit community.
 
Never can it be a civilization, which automatically generates massive accumulations of waste. This is because by definition civilization is based on parasitic cities which mine the vast lands around them.
 
 
With that, let’s get to the alleged effects of animals and methane. Nomadic humans herded livestock for thousands of years causing no ecological problems. Wild grazers such as bison and wildebeest used to be far more abundant than today with no problems. Civilizations have destroyed vast swaths of land through sedentary agriculture, not pastoralism. Pastoralism becomes ecologically harmful only when grazing is driven off appropriate intact grasslands by agriculture and other extraction industries and onto inappropriate marginal land. Same as how, in addition to the direct assaults on forests by industrial agriculture and logging, civilization’s industries drive traditional farmers off their appropriate arable lands and into slash-and-burn.
 
Today there are dire ecological harms including massive greenhouse gas emissions caused by factory farms, CAFOs. These generate tremendous waste accumulations, literal lakes of liquid manure (called “lagoons”), which spew vast plumes of methane along with many directly toxic air pollutants. The system makes only feeble attempts to find farmland where it can spread this manure, and much of the carbon already has vaporized into the atmosphere. Meanwhile CAFOs vomit huge amounts of nitrogen into the air as the highly potent greenhouse gas nitrous oxide and into waterways causing massive pollution culminating in the vast Dead Zones of the Gulf of Mexico, the Chesapeake, and many other places around the world.
 
If we’re focused on the climate crisis, on methane, carbon dioxide, and nitrous oxide, there’s our legitimate target in animal agriculture. If on the other hand you object to all animal husbandry, including grass farming, on animal welfare grounds, then be honest enough to own up to that. Don’t lie and say pasture farming is a significant contributor to climate change, because it’s not.
 
We must go further. A sincere climate focus must indict industrial agriculture as a whole, all of which is massively destructive to the ecology in many ways, including the fact that the sector is the leading emitter of greenhouse gases.
 
We must go further. We must condemn capitalism as such, productionism as such, the economic civilization as such, since forced climate change and every other ecological assault are inherent to these; they depend upon ecological destruction for their existence to the point that any legitimate definition of them must include destroying the Earth.
 
Here’s the fact: There is one and only one solution to avert the worst of climate chaos:
 
Stop emitting; stop destroying sinks; rebuild sinks.
 
All else is a lie. Most of all, the Big Lie is that anything constructive can be done within the congenitally destructive framework of the economic civilization.
 
So let’s dispense with the ticky-tack nonsense of attacking small animal farms, many of which are leaders in building the community food movement, as alleged climate destroyers. Only fake activists, members of the de facto climate denier crew, would engage in such a fraud.
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

September 27, 2018

A Cultural Crisis of the Climate Crisis

>

 
 
Climate chaos promises catastrophe. No one within the system is doing anything and no one will do anything. There is one and only one way to avert the worst of the climate crisis:
 
Stop emitting greenhouse gases; stop destroying sinks; rebuild sinks on a massive scale.
 
All else is a lie. Most of all, the Big Lie is that anything constructive can be done within the congenitally destructive framework of the economic civilization.
 
The understanding that catastrophe is inevitable has long been around among “fringe”, “doomer” types. The fact is so incontrovertible that by now it’s starting to trickle into academia and the mainstream media, triggering much shrill criticism from the climate establishment. These mainstream scientists, even as they sound the climate change alarm, have systematically dampened it.
 
The IPCC has been consistently lukewarm in its projections, which reality consistently has outstripped. This isn’t just because the panel needs to attain consensus on its reports, though this does automatically water things down. It’s primarily because the IPCC, and climate scientists in general, have an institutional ideology and personal temperament which inertially cause them to focus on linear projections, discount non-linear, chaotic effects, and in general water down their conclusions. This is hard-wired into their linear, gradualist ideology. In most cases they’re unable to comprehend evidence against this linear gradualism. And then of course they have venal, careerist interests.
 
All this leads them to sound the climate change alarm, but only in such a way as to set up another propaganda campaign on behalf of productionism, capitalism, the economic civilization. The problem has to be solvable within the capitalist framework. The answer to the climate crisis (and all other environmental crises) has to be: Keep Shopping! Keep Driving!
 
This propaganda is required by their ideological commitment to Mammon, technocracy, and productionism, and it’s required for their career and funding interests. That’s why climatologists and mainstream environmental groups have been so peculiarly ambivalent and lukewarm about the crisis: Sound the alarm, but not too loud. They must reject any implication that the crisis cannot be solved within the framework of capitalism, productionism, the economic civilization.
 
They reject this in spite of the self-evident fact that the crisis cannot be confronted that way, that this framework will never, can never, do anything but drive the crisis unto its ultimate worst. That’s why they howl at anyone who tells the truth: The truth nullifies their entire ideology, their entire corporate-capitalist power agenda, their entire technocratic-productionist religious commitment.
 
They try to conceal this by deploring how publicity of the truth will allegedly sow despair and lead to fatalism. But in doing this they only discredit themselves. Here we have the climate scientists, whose reputation in the eyes of the people was always shaky to begin with, openly saying they lie to us about the real catastrophic prospects, and that all scientists and journalists should lie. No wonder de jure denial is so rife even among those who cannot profit from denial and can only be harmed by it. It’s similar to the cultural reaction which generated the anti-Darwin movement in America: It’s a revolt of the disenfranchised against a faction of openly arrogant, supercilious elites. Much of the vaccine-skeptical fervor also has this root cause, though of course it goes far beyond that: We all know for a fact what congenital liars scientists are where it comes to any corporate product which is linked with the scientism religion. The most world-historical criminal example is the poisoner campaign on behalf of pesticides and GMOs, where literally every establishment word is a lie.
 
These elites claim that telling the truth about climate chaos will cause people to disengage? Their open contempt for the people and falseness toward us causes far more people to disengage.
 
By trying to engender false hope in capitalist-technocratic “solutions” which will enable business as usual to continue (Keep Shopping!), by trying to engender “hope” at all (in this and in most contexts “false hope” is redundant), they’re acting as agents of the climate-destroying civilization, another type of sheepdog. And then many of them are out-and-out corporate shills.
 
Perhaps some of them are sincere in revealing their own personal despair, if privately they realize the entire technocratic and economic paradigm to which they’ve dedicated their lives is a total failure, is purely destructive, and has no future.
 
As for their smug, patronizing pontifications about the alleged despair of the people, we can dismiss this with all the contempt it deserves. We the people don’t need fake hope, and we certainly don’t need lies. We need truth and we need action. The only real climate action is action against the economic civilization driving climate chaos and all other ecological crises. The economic civilization these establishment scientists and NGOs represent.
 
They’re proposing nothing and doing nothing. They’ll never do anything but destroy, since their civilization is capable of nothing but destruction. That’s why all their prescriptions, from industrial renewables to piggy-backing industrial recycling on the regular waste/destruction stream to electric cars to cap-and-trade to carbon taxes (taxes on ongoing waste and destruction), comprise nothing but scams and further environmental insults, in many cases (geoengineering, fracking, the escalation of poison agriculture under the Orwellian “climate smart” slogan, expanding nukes and/or CCS) adding or promising to add new ecological catastrophes on top of the climate crisis and all the other crises.
 
All of this is false and evil. There is one and only one way to avert the worst:
 
Stop emitting; stop destroying sinks; rebuild sinks.
 
All else is a lie. Most of all, the Big Lie is that anything constructive can be done within the congenitally destructive framework of the economic civilization.
 
Where does this leave the civilization consecrated to economic extraction and production? Where does this leave technocracy? Where does this leave Mammon? I think the answer is obvious, and the more people comprehend the truth of the great crisis of the age, the more will awaken to what’s obvious. This awakening is what our “scientists” and “environmentalists” want to prevent. “I shop, therefore I lie.”
 
 
 
 

September 21, 2018

Human Cleansing

 
 
Part of the banksters’ deliberate demolition of the global finance system in 2008 was a great surge in food prices which triggered spontaneous crowd scenes the mainstream media branded “food riots”. These pudgy writers and editors didn’t let us know how they believe they’d fare if they and their families were being intentionally starved amid plenteous food, on account of purely artificial scarcity generated by purely political choices made by criminals.
 
We’ve long known the nature of these political decisions. It’s fundamental to capitalism that it generate scarcity amid plenty. This is part of why the productionist civilization works so aggressively to murder the Earth: It wants to generate this scarcity as a physical reality, which it thinks will render its power mission more easy. That’s one reason civilization wants to turn every forest, grassland, and wetland into a desert.
 
Short of this final goal of physical destruction, capitalism accomplishes the enforcement of scarcity by stealing the vast majority of what the productive people grow and craft. In the case of agriculture, the basic mechanisms of this crime have been land enclosure in the West and globalization for much of the global South. The result in both cases has been to drive vast amounts of people off the land, generating mass migrations similar to the barbarian migrations into Europe in the first millennium. Today they pair the economic war campaign with their campaign to drive climate chaos. Global warming will help generate the deserts, and before that drought, flooding, and other disasters will escalate the forced migrations. At the same time the corporate economic dominion and the intensifying ecological chaos will destroy all food security, rendering every society on the planet extremely food insecure.
 
These migrations head to the shantytowns of Southern and European cities, while their ghetto and tent city equivalents in America already are burgeoning. The South is undergoing a new onslaught of land enclosures, as regional kleptocracies sell vast amounts of tribes’ and farmers’ land in Kenya, Ethiopia, Tanzania, and elsewhere to corporations and conglomerates from places like Sweden, the UK, South Korea, Saudi Arabia, and of course Wall Street.
 
Proximately this renewed colonial land grab is to grow commodity soybeans, flowers, feedstock for biofuels, and other worthless luxury items. Commodity soybeans aren’t food but CAFO feedstock designed to be turned into cheap meat in the most wasteful way possible, while biofuels are wasteful, destructive, and malign in principle. In a country like the US ethanol mandates are pure corporate welfare, and globally they serve only to degrade the environment, cause further rainforest destruction and greenhouse gas emissions, and drive up the price of food by diverting it from the mouths of billions of the most vulnerable to the gas tanks of the richest and fattest. Now they’re also the engine of accelerating corporate land enclosures.
 
These assaults on the Southern farmer are the latest depredation of the same globalization in agriculture which has dumped subsidized Western commodities on the domestic markets of almost every country. The goal here is to force all agriculture on Earth, the vast amount of which is logically subsistence agriculture and agriculture grown for local and regional markets, to conform to the practices, prices, and power relations of globalized corporate commodity agriculture. At the same time the IMF, as part of its structural adjustment assaults, forced most of these countries to dismantle their well-functioning state investment programs whose explicit goals had been to assure decent prices for their farmers and make affordable credit available to them. This helped keep much of the wealth generated by small farmers in the hands of those farmers. Today the dumping includes subsidized proprietary GM seeds which cabals like the Gates Foundation and USAID are trying to force upon these already beleaguered farmers, to further enforce this global indenture.
 
Another major driver of grain prices, similar to biofuel mandates, is the diversion of grain from food to feed for livestock. As the corporate system aggressively advertises the consumerism of meat, logs ever greater subsidies which enables them to lower the retail price, and more people in the East can afford to eat more meat, this generates more demand for the extreme waste of grain to feed cattle and pork rather than letting the land be used to grow food. The special arithmetic of the corporations, governments, media, and science establishment says that it’s right to use ten grain calories to produce one calorie of beef; the ratio is only slightly less wasteful for other CAFO inmates. At the same time, everywhere CAFOs exist they’ve destroyed all independent cow and pig farmers. This adds to the forced migrations and the food insecurity of all societies. All these assaults have been subsidized by Western governments. We can add bankster speculation in agricultural commodities to the array of weapons the system deploys to destroy all small farmers, indenture bigger ones, and impose food insecurity.
 
The goal of the economic civilization always has been to drive people off the land and into slums. This maximizes the number of people who are completely detached from any food production whatsoever. Those who still do farm are to be subjected to the forces of capitalist production. That means the constant upheaval and escalating corporate enclosure of the procedures, technology, and basic concepts of production. Synthetic fertilizers, the crop lien, dependency upon cash crops, mechanization, collectivization, dependency upon federal subsidies, the poisons of the Green Revolution, total monoculture, dependency upon global markets, the fencerow-to-fencerow Stalinization of American farming, the rise of Monsanto, GMOs: These are milestones in the history of the farmer’s complete passivity in the face of power imposed upon him from on high. In all of this, domination of food, and in particular the eradication of all food culture, is the totalitarian goal.
 
The goal is to maximize power and impose total domination and control. The power then can be used any way the elites choose: In the short run, to maximize production, profit, and ecological destruction sheerly for their own sakes; in the longer run, to enforce a de jure slave economy in order to maintain their power and luxury in an apocalyptic world of fossil fuel exhaustion and and total ecological collapse. Since a key power tactic is to completely uproot the people, detach them from every frame of reference, every anchor they have, and force them to look to the regime itself as the one and only stable point amid the chaos, it follows that destroying all ability of communities and societies to produce their own food, to destroy even all knowledge of food production, is the way to force total dependency on and obedience to the corporate-technocratic system. This is the way to enforce domination over all of humanity. This campaign has been underway for decades now, starting with the Green Revolution.
 
 
 
 

September 20, 2018

Impeach the Economic Civilization

>

 
 
Given the tightly limited resources available to dissidents, why should anyone invest these in seeking the impeachment of a fungible geek like a US president? Indeed, those fixated on impeachment seem never to have any rationale beyond Trump Derangement Syndrome. To replace Trump with Pence would be no improvement and likely would make things worse. Trump and Pence have shared corporate ideology and goals, but Trump’s more chaotic execution is more likely to lead to chaotic, perhaps system-destructive effects more quickly than a more disciplined execution. The same is true of any Democrat we could envision replacing Trump in 2020. That’s why it was a great thing that Trump won in 2016: He’s more likely to bring about a faster collapse of the US empire and of the globalization system in general. Not because these are his goals, but because his indiscipline adds a much-needed wild card to the deck. Needless to say, humanity and the Earth have nothing to lose, as we’re slowly but surely being exterminated once and for all regardless.
 
Of course, even among dissidents most are incapable of understanding this. Among their lamentations we hear the constantly reiterated chorus, action is necessary to “save civilization.”
 
How bizarre to see this anointed the great goal amid such hand-wringing about climate destruction and genocide. From the Fertile Crescent to the Amazon today civilization always has made a desert everywhere it can. Civilization always has been completely dependent upon slavery, genocide, ecocide, and every kind of massive extreme violence. These are inherent to civilization. This is true of modern civilization most of all. The climate crisis and all other modern ecological and socioeconomic crises are the logical results of the economic civilization. The one and only solution for humanity and the Earth is to abolish this civilization and restore the truly ecological and human way of living. The way we lived in happiness, health, and freedom for tens of thousands of years.
 
But then it’s not really bizarre in context, the context of the modern political class. This class, from corporate CEOs to self-alleged anarchists, has near-complete consensus on the need and desire to totally mine and murder the Earth. Their fanaticism is production for the sake of production, their fetish to build the biggest, deadest necropolis possible. This they call their “great works”. I’ve seen “anarchists” who still fantasize about space travel, which of course requires the most rigidly ramified and militaristic hierarchy of all. (NASA and the Pentagon have been inextricably entwined from day one.) But they fantasize you could go to Mars on the basis of direct democracy and a generalized rotating-task economy. This, I suppose, is the extreme infantile political manifestation which goes well with the general techno-infantilism of thinking you can go to Mars at all, let alone the stars. No wonder they all join hands in touting geoengineering, the most extreme assault on the Earth imaginable short of nuclear war, as their ultimate fake “solution” to the climate crisis.
 
This obscenity goes to the core of how all the prescriptions touted within the productionist framework are fraudulent, and how not just liberalism but the left as such offers no alternative to the productionist nightmare. Every bit as much as Trump, “leftists” like this will never stop until Gaia and humanity are completely exterminated.
 
Given this state of insanity and depravity, typical symptoms of the terminal decadent stage of the economic civilization, how absurd is it to engage with the kind of “politics” which is discussed on cable news and in the mainstream newspapers? That’s automatically a fantasy world and much worse. We are, quite literally, a handful of sane people in a continent-sized madhouse, a handful of atheists in a globe-sized fundamentalist church of Mammon and productionism. It follows that the only sane, rational, faithful thing to do is to acknowledge this, renounce engagement with the mass of insane atoms, and accept the path dictated by reality.
 
 
 
 
 

September 19, 2018

Death to the Car

Filed under: Climate Crisis, Dance of Death — Russell Bangs @ 10:37 am

>

 
 
(Whereas almost everyone prefers, Cars to the Death.)
 
Few things appeal to most people’s selfish desires more than the liberal-version climate-denier fraud of “Let’s all buy electric cars…”*, This perpetuates the Big Lie that the personal car as such is compatible with any meaningful action on the climate crisis or other ecological and social crises. The car fetish, and America’s entire centrally planned economy based upon it, is at the core of ALL the crises. All the wars of the US for at least the last fifty years have been for the sake of corporate profit and fueling the cars.
 
[*Electric car, aka fracking car, nuke car, mountaintop removal car.]
 
The car is violently dangerous and yet Americans have completely normalized this extreme violence to the point that they don’t even see it as violence. And for what? For something which has only destructive ecological and social effects, something destructively symbolic. Far more than gun culture, the car goes to the core of the characteristically American sickness. I’d say it’s the mental illness with regard to the car which, more than any other single cause, guarantees that Americans of every political persuasion will never do anything more than cry crocodile tears over the climate crisis until nature itself brings the malign structure down.
 
BTW no electricity production, whether fraudulently called “renewable” or not, is intended to replace fossil fuels. All modes of industrial generation and deployment of electrical capacity are intended only to add to the destruction/consumption maw. Here too there is consensus across the US political class, the Corporate One-Party and its supporters. They’re all avowed destroyers of humanity and the Earth.
 
Trump = Obama. Just like in everything else.
 
Here’s a fun game: Which of these slogans makes a better chant?
 
      /                  /
“Drill Baby Drill!” (McCain/Palin campaign 2008)
 
      /                        /         /      /      /
“We’re Number One in Oil and Gas!” (Obama in his 2015 State of the Union address)
 
 
 
 
 

August 5, 2018

You Can Hoard, But You Can’t Hide (Svalbard’s Broken Freezer)

<

 
 
When we built the seed vault, there was not even discussion of the permafrost,” Hege Njaa Aschim, the press representative of the organization that oversees the project, told me. But the weather last winter, she said, was “like a Norwegian summer.” “We didn’t come up with the term doomsday vault,” Cary Fowler, the mastermind of the seed vault, told me. “The idea there was to provide an insurance policy, so if anything were to happen to those other facilities, it wouldn’t be an extinction event.”
 
Destruction of seed biodiversity is one of the worst crises and crimes of corporate agriculture. The proprietors of Svalbard – the agrochemical cartel and the governments that serve it – all want the total death of humanity and the Earth. For the ecology, agronomy, and human freedom it’s essential that we the living people breed our own necessary organic crops and sustain and expand a decentralized network of seed saving and seed exchange.
 
You won’t hear this in the corporate media. There you’re far more likely to find the hagiography of Svalbard, the “doomsday vault” which is going to save us all, the seed bank which in crisis is going to enable Monsanto and the Gates Foundation to continue to “feed the world” even though so far all they’re doing is starving it.
 
Svalbard is part of the system dedicated to centralized corporate control of all genetic diversity and committed to the destruction of agroecology, participatory breeding, networked seed sharing and conservation. Consider who controls the Svalbard project: Bayer/Monsanto, the Gates Foundation, Syngenta, DuPont, USAID, the CGIAR, the World Bank, all dedicated to totalitarian technocracy.
 
The project is a typical “public-private partnership” which fits into the decades-long pattern of CGIAR institutions traversing the global South to collect germplasm, convey it to the corporations (i.e. to perform corporate research with public money), and to proselytize on behalf of Western corporate agriculture among Southern officials, intellectuals and farmers, but using a “public” veneer. USAID and the Gates crew specialize in this. The seeds they heist and convey to the corporate vault then come under corporate control and will be used only for the elites’ purposes. The same system which is trying to enclose seeds everywhere will deploy its corporate vaults in the same way.
 
The doomsday vault is supposed to come in handy if the political and corporate elites ever were to have catastrophic need. In the meantime the place serves as a standard publicly-funded corporate gathering and research facility for Monsanto and the rest of the GM seed cartel. In that day-to-day way it represents doomsday for humanity and the Earth.
 
 
Beyond that, the idea of Svalbard – a centralized, literal fortress – is completely wrong ecologically. Here as everywhere else we need networked decentralization. We need a vast network of thousands of seed banks, all devoted to adapting landraces on a regional basis. Also, storing seeds is only second best. For varieties to remain attuned to the ecology people need to keep growing them. There’s no way to rely on the ecological viability of even the most carefully stored seeds as time passes while the plants aren’t being grown in the real world. You have to keep planting and growing them.
 
This also is the only way to restore seeds and crops as a core part of human culture, human spirit. They must be part of our living experience, our immersion in the flows of the ecology.
 
 
Svalbard’s broken freezer, its melting permafrost, is a reminder of how physically and politically vulnerable a bunker like this is, how it’s the wrong path. It’s ironic that the climate chaos being driven most of all by the industrial agriculture paradigm of which Svalbard is a devoted part is coming home to threaten the vault itself. This project of Monsanto and Gates does indeed represent doomsday: First human doom through socioeconomic attack, then ecological doom through poisonism and destruction of habitat and biodiversity, and above all total human and ecological doom through total climate chaos.
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

July 30, 2018

We Need Renewable Ideas, Not Stale Ones About “Renewables”

>

They may say I look like Don Quixote, but they’re the ones charging a mirage.

 
 
Industrial renewables are unsustainable because of their dependency on a foundation of cheap plentiful fossil fuels: Especially, they and the industrial economy they’re supposed to rescue would continue to be completely dependent upon fossil fuels for transportation. Industrial renewables also are bound up in ecological destruction: The destruction of arid ecosystems for CSP monocultures, the murder of rivers for hydroelectric, the straight extractionist rape from the metals mining it requires. And of course the wholesale massacre of birds by industrial windmills. It takes a special kind of depravity to call this “environmentalism”, and only today’s corporate environmentalists could reach such a level of depravity.
 
The main evil of the propaganda of a large-scale industrial renewables buildout is that it’s supposed to replace fossil fuels in powering what would otherwise be the same corporate globalization regime. This is no improvement. Centralization itself, gigantism itself, is at the core of the crisis. No one who would want a high-consumption grid based on CSP and industrial wind mega-farms would care about replacing fossil fuels anyway; they’d only want to supplement them. If the paramount imperative is to feed the monstrous consumption maw (and for the advocates of the industrial civilization this is the only imperative), then the climate crisis and all other environmental crises can’t have any importance at all, other than as propaganda gambits on behalf of further escalated destruction. On the contrary, if averting the worst of the crises was any kind of goal, then the goal of maximizing energy production automatically would be downgraded severely.
 
What’s most promising about renewables is their decentralized, non-grid potential to contribute to a decent life for human beings, such as the great potential of passive solar heating. Just as with agroecology, here we can provide warmth and comfort and sufficient electricity for family and community use, as opposed to the productionist mindset which only wants massive corporate-controlled electricity generation for its own sake. It’s the same as how growing food for human beings is vastly more productive and healthy in every way than producing agricultural commodities from which food is then supposed to trickle down as an afterthought. It’s true that acre for acre agroecology is far more productive in every way – calories, nutrition, biodiversity, every other ecological function – than industrial monoculture, whereas decentralized renewables would produce less gross energy quantity than any kind of industrial generation. But the better quality of life provided by a decentralized ecological society would more than make up for that.
 
Anyway, industrial-scale renewables never could be self-sustaining rather than dependent upon a fossil fuel foundation. Therefore the whole quantity-vs.-quality debate is moot since the quantity couldn’t be sustained anyway.
 
All this must be placed in the context of humanity’s great need to abolish the onslaught of industrial poisons. This is a more immediate and dire threat even than climate change, as pressing as that’s becoming. (But these two crises are completely intertwined and cannot be separated. What drives one drives the other, and the only solution for one is the only solution for the other.) Many of those who tout industrial renewables want to use this to prop up poison-based agriculture. Obviously it won’t be possible really to do that once the necessary cheap, plentiful fossil fuels aren’t available. But the idea itself is pernicious since it’s part of the “delayer” form of denialism, the de facto denialism of the climate crocodiles shedding their usual crocodile tears.
 
That too is a reason to reject any version of the call for productionist Business As Usual, including the version which would have it all powered by industrial renewables. Such a program, if it were possible and actually carried out, would continue destroying the Earth and would continue to drive the climate crisis since it would continue destroying the forests, grasslands, and soil.
 
No aspect of the modern technocratic-corporate system is redeemable. Productionism, capitalism in itself is the most evil of all ideologies and systematically maximizes all other evils because it can’t use or tolerate anything that’s good in people or the Earth, only the bad, destructive, and wasteful.
 
We must reject concepts of absolute production and consumption, but rather think and speak only in terms of what’s sufficient and desirable. This includes the social/community element. All the worthless high-maintenance material junk which has been available to the Western rich and middle classes and their apes around the world have not made them psychologically secure, content, happy. On the contrary, it’s evident how unhappy, insecure, insane and deranged the “modern” human type has become.
 
Conversely, and as a corollary, people still close to an indigenous or national way of life, or who faithfully seek such a life, don’t need more “stuff”. We can benefit from modern agroecological science (which is knowledge, not imported junk like commodified seeds and poisons) and some of the medical knowledge (there too, it’s basic knowledge and low-tech practice which helps most, not modern high-maintenance technology; the fact is that most of the modern medical gains were achieved by things like better sanitation, while hi-tech modern medical science has had a much smaller and diminishing-returns role, and in any event is increasingly impossible financially for most people even in the West). Agroecology is not a revelation to people still close to the Earth, but builds upon and modifies traditional knowledge.
 
For the physical reasons of Peak Oil, the climate crisis and the many other environmental crises, driven by the socioeconomic and spiritual evils of productionism and corporate capitalism, all our ideas about energy and technology must mean finding the level which is best for the most constructive and fulfilled human experience and interaction within the ecology, our only home. The workable political and economic level for the ecology is also the best level for human happiness and contentment, on an individual and community level. All the evidence says this level is low in terms of the physical technological sophistication and grossness, high in terms of knowledge. The best example is the extreme contrast of the technologically highly ramified, but intellectually and scientifically very stupid and retrograde poison agriculture regime, vs. the “low-tech” but intellectually highly advanced agroecological paradigm. The same is true for money and finance. The same is true for everything else. And the same is true for energy, where the low-hanging fruit of fully developing passive solar knowledge to provide adequate heating for home and community use, joined with the necessary social transformations, is far more promising than generating extreme amounts of electricity amid an ongoing consumer atomism while the civilization attempts to murder the Earth and commits suicide in the process.
 
 
 
 
 

July 28, 2018

The Lying Media-“Political” Culture of the Climate Crisis

Filed under: Climate Crisis, Disaster Capitalism, Mainstream Media, Reformism Can't Work — Tags: , — Russell Bangs @ 5:49 am

>

 
 
The corporate media has failed abysmally at preparing the public for a climate changed world, let alone reporting on it. According to a Media Matters survey:
 

Throughout the recent record-breaking heat wave that affected millions across the United States, major broadcast TV networks overwhelmingly failed to report on the links between climate change and extreme heat. Over a two-week period from late June to early July, ABC, CBS, and NBC aired a combined 127 segments or weathercasts that discussed the heat wave, but only one segment, on CBS This Morning, mentioned climate change.”

 
Ten years ago the mainstream media was full of stories about the real effects of climate change. They ran regular features summing up the science and the prognosis.
 
Today the coverage is very different. As the survey cited above demonstrates, the media has jettisoned most real-world reportage on the climate crisis. Instead they’ve gone back to reporting on “natural” disasters: (1) as if they actually were natural rather than man-made; (2) as ad hoc things that happen at random rather than part of a coherent trend.
 
The media’s coverage of climate change has departed from the real world and instead focuses only on certain fake political angles, such as “Trump” taking the US out of the sham Paris agreement, as well as the alleged virtue of the sham agreement itself. This normalizes the climate crisis, or more specifically having fervid opinions about it, as just another lifestyle ornament. Just another part of fake celebrity and culture-war pseudo-politics.
 
The main reason the media used to report on the climate crisis in a semi-serious way is that it took some years for the corporate sectors to reach a consensus on downplaying/denying the crisis. At first they left this to Big Oil, led by ExxonMobil. Other sectors were uncertain what it all meant for them. Wall Street seriously considered trying to blow up a bubble based on cap-and-trade, “offsets”, and derivatives based on such scams. The frackers took potshots at the coal industry. Monsanto and the biotech sector touted the scam of “climate-smart agriculture”, as well as fraudulently citing climate denial in their propaganda even though they themselves are climate deniers. Those are examples of why climate change used to get more play in the corporate media. But by now, although there’s still some of this exploitative propaganda, the corporations largely have decided they want to deny the whole thing. Some still engage in de jure denial, most have joined the liberals in de facto denial. This means expressing “right belief”, paying lip service, shedding crocodile tears, emitting sham proposals, but never really proposing to do anything but continue to emit and destroy.
 
The hand-wringing, virtue-signalling, and fake prescriptions of the climate crocodiles – Keep Shopping! Shopping Uber Alles! for example, replacing fossil fuels with corporate-industrial renewables; Keep Driving! hybrids and electric cars of course; never mind that most of the emissions and environmental destruction are bound up in the initial manufacturing process – fits in well with this since little of this is actually going to be done, and if it were done it merely would add to civilization’s consumption and destruction maw while doing nothing but making the climate crisis worse.
 
Meanwhile for as long as modern civilization staggers along, emissions will continue to rise and sinks will continue to be destroyed. All the other ecological crises will continue to get worse.
 
But it’s always been true that there is one and only one solution to avert the worst of climate chaos:
 
Stop emitting; stop destroying sinks; rebuild sinks.
 
All else is a lie. Most of all, the Big Lie is that that anything constructive can be done within the congenitally destructive framework of the economic civilization.
 
 
 
 
 

July 23, 2018

This Civilization is Collective Murder-Suicide

>

The end point for everything the extreme energy civilization is doing: The Earth nothing but a desert with ruins.

 
 
1. Civilization is destruction. For humanity and the Earth it is death. We’re bogged down in it. It’s driving us to the brink of nuclear war at the same time it’s giving us all cancer. Most civilized people want the missiles to fly, and most want cancer for themselves and their children. Their actions prove it.
 
“Growth”, the idol of fundamentalist worship by all the civilized, including “environmentalists” and the climate crocodiles, is physically unsustainable and must collapse with unfathomable consequences. It is cancer as well. Symbolically growth is directly analogous to cancer metastasis, and growth’s reality depends upon physically killing us with cancer, starvation, bullets.
 
Look everywhere Western globalization has spread, look at any government, any Leader, any journalist, any academic, any NGO, see what they unanimously say: If you’re not rich, then die.
 
It is self-evident that anyone who thinks this way also will think murderously, though few are as honest as the Canadian bankster who openly says, “There are some people that are going to die in protesting construction of this pipeline.”
 
What this means is, “We should kill anyone who is in the way of our tyranny, whether as activists or simply as obstacles.” This means the entire 99%. All system cadres think this way and intend to act on this. This is the intended consummation of modern civilization, the total murder of the Earth and murder-suicide of humanity.
 
Smash the bottlenecks.
 
2. Politics is dead. Electoral democracy is a proven failure and by now a fraud. We’re bogged down in it. Its partisans – “voters” – aren’t political at all but rather are rival mobs cheering on entertainers and wrestlers, like the Blues and Greens of ancient Constantinople. Most of all they’re chanting for the missiles to fly. Only the most cloddish and inertial still dream of “alternative parties”, which invariably turn out to be new glosses on the same scam. Humanity and the Earth need something vastly greater than paltry reforms. The need is a movement and spiritual way dedicated to joining Gaia in destroying the stale and toxic anti-culture and building a whole new vision, a whole new culture.
 
Smash the bottlenecks.
 
3. Ecological catastrophe is rampant, still gathering tremendous force, and accelerating. The consequences are unfathomable but will include mass starvation and mass cancer. The campaign of destroying the Earth and provoking Earth’s kinesis in response has been deliberate on the part of all governments, corporations, the entire political and media class, the scientific establishment, all of academia, all system NGOs. It’s the intended action and goal of globalization, capitalism, technocracy, scientism, productionism, the economic/commercial civilization as such.
 
The catastrophe deniers are merely witting or unwitting tools of these destroyers of the Earth. Worst are the de facto deniers with their crocodile tears and fake “solutions”. All deniers are peas in a pod.
 
The climate chaos driven by civilization’s greenhouse emissions and destruction of sinks is gathering momentum to destroy us all unless we take action against the monstrous machine itself.
 
Here most of all we see the affinity of liberal Democrats and conservative Republicans (that is, identical Party-mongers). Both want humanity to sit still while the death machine devours us all.
 
Keep Shopping! That’s the prescription for the climate crisis propagated by liberals and scientists. This also is their prescription for all the other ecological crises. Keep Shopping. And of course Keep Driving.
 
Just shut up, sit still, stay the course. Keep voting when told. Believe your Party Leaders, and your media and academic betters. Yes, the two types of denier are peas in a pod. Just as the Dembots and Repbots are peas in a pod in every other way.
 
4. Democrat Party partisans are the most vile of all. Anti-ecology, anti-human, pro-destruction, pro-Mammon, pro-famine, pro-war, pro-police, pro-corporate, pro-technocracy – there’s not a single evil on earth the liberal Democrats aren’t doing all they can to drive to its worst.
 
That applies to America. A similar anti-political process has transpired in most or all other Western countries.
 
 
By now we have to give up on the Party people, the terminally inert, stupid, and malign. Those who even at this late date still receive their marching orders and their very ideas and words from Party Leaders, from corporations, from academic/scientific nabobs. These are nothing but purely inertial conformist non-entities.
 
 
The extreme energy civilization, having bottlenecked all human potential and driven humanity into a socioeconomic and political dead end, now drives itself into its own terminal bottleneck.
 
Do you feel ill, or your children or pets? Do you fear sickness? Do you feel financially secure? Secure in your job? Are you optimistic things will change for the better? Do you know who has destroyed all security? Do you know what’s making us sick? Do you feel safe when you look at the news from America and around the world? Do you know why the world is going insane?
 
You’re feeling the great bottleneck. Our health, our security, our peace of mind, our work, our culture, our spirit, our freedom, all are bottled up. You feel the fear, you sense our psychological, spiritual, cultural, economic bottleneck.
 
To anyone who feels bottlenecked, whatever the surface reason seems to be, you must understand that yours is a symptom of a global ecological crisis. You cannot solve your crisis within the bottleneck which causes it any more than the civilization can pull itself out of its own bottleneck.
 
All of this civilization’s bottlenecks boil down to the simple equation: Wealth and power accumulation must be accompanied by an equal level of physical, economic, spiritual, cultural, and ecological destruction. Modern civilization’s accumulation of wealth and power, which has not and will not trickle down to us even if we wanted it to at the price of murdering humanity and the Earth, equals our destruction.
 
Smash the bottlenecks.
 
 
 
 

July 3, 2018

Earth’s Call

Filed under: Agroecology, Climate Crisis, Dance of Death, Freedom — Tags: , , — Russell Bangs @ 10:51 am

>

 
 
*I cry from the wilderness. I’ve warned against the physical poisons and the artificial structures which propagate the physical poisons. I continue to warn against these all, against the corporate “person”-demons, against Mammon.
 
I cry out in the streets and am invisible and cannot be heard.
 
*For years I dreamt of a globe transformed to societies based on agroecology and food sovereignty. The evidence says this physically can be done. The evidence says even 10 billion people could grow their own food agroecologically for the price of everyone working a few hours a day at the equivalent of gardening chores. The agroecological society would have nothing in common with the slavery of commodity field work. We’d be healthy and free. The only obstacles are political.
 
Be clear: Agroecology requires less space, less resources, less impact, less money, to produce food for more people, than industrial agriculture.
 
There are no physical obstacles to a global transformation of all human society to an infinitely better order. The only obstacles are political.
 
But such a political transformation would require such a radical rewiring of the inflamed brain as to render the idea of it utopian. I see no way such a political change ever could happen. “Political” types can’t even get it together to enact reforms within their civilization, let alone transform the civilization itself.
 
The only way is to channel the spirit of Gaia, help the people hear the Earth with their own ears, help them feel the Earth with their own souls.
 
*Gaia sculpted us to be hunter-gatherers. Evolution worked our clay. With sane use of the inflamed brain we figured out how to pasture animals on appropriate land, how to do horticulture and husbandry on appropriate land.
 
But agriculture and animal agriculture are the seeds and leaves of the city, corrupt seeds and poison leaves of its prison walls. These are never adaptive, never ecological. They never work for people or the land.
 
*Gaia gave us the idea of her. We’ve learned from observation and eventually from theories. We learned to understand aspects of the Earth. We learned ecology. We’ve seen with our own eyes the campaign of destruction.
 
Let’s take just one part of it, deforestation, the mass murder of trees across all zones especially the tropical:
 
1. Deforestation brings the drought, brings the desert.
 
2. It’s a major part of the ongoing sixth major extinction event in Earth’s history.
 
3. It brings erosion, brings the carbon, which brings the heating, which brings the methane, which is bringing the real heating.
 
The number one driver of global deforestation is the Western consumption maw, especially that of the US.
 
That puts in perspective the lame, fake “solutions” to climate change offered by “activists” in the US. These solutions – offsets, industrial “renewables”, hybrid cars and other product substitutions – also drive deforestation.
 
The truth is there is one and only one real solution for averting the worst of the climate crisis: Stop all industrial greenhouse gas emissions, stop destroying sinks (this means ending ALL deforestation), rebuild sinks on a massive scale.
 
Anything short of that is a lie.
 
*The injury, often lethal, is practical, directly to our bodies, directly to our ability to eat, to sustain ourselves. The injury is to our feeling of beauty and spirit. The injury is to our humanity.
 
There are those who say our humanity makes us superior to the other animals and to nature. Even leaving aside all the other reasons this is false, most of all it’s false because modern civilization, by driving the ecological sunder to its utmost and exterminating all that’s left of human spirit and culture, destroys our very humanity most of all.
 
*Watch the moon travel the sky across thirty sunrises. These are regular phase changes. Then there’s Gaia’s non-linear phase changes triggered by extreme forces. Today the berserk species Homo domesticus, civilized man, is using the billions of years of stored solar energy to murderously assault Gaia. As always Gaia will impose her correction upon this vermin affliction.
 
We can’t know exactly how Gaia’s kinesis will play out, but still we must begin work on the post-kinetic life, the village, the tent camp, whatever the form becomes. We must base our future not on where we were or what might seem to work right now, but on where the grounding of future human life will be, after the collapse. We must understand the unfolding kinesis and prepare to endure it.
 
We’re already enduring it, in the form of the depredations of the corporate technocratic civilization itself and all its horrors: Ecological, socioeconomic, cultural. Things are going to get much worse.
 
*If humanity has more days at all, the return home to Gaia must itself be part of Gaia’s phase change. Our best chance is to build the necessary ideas in our brains.
 
If we’re to have a future at all, our nation has to be phase changing right now in harmony with Gaia’s change. No longer to be the deranged parasitic squatting vandals of industrial civilization but the renaissance of primal humanity living as one with the ecology.
 
That’s what Gaia means today for us.
 
*The mass murder of the trees is one of the most savage feedback loops of ecological destruction.
 
As the trees are murdered by logging and clearance for corporate agriculture, the carbon stored in their biomass and the soil they maintain is released, and the clouds and rains they generate through their evapotranspiration fade out, bringing in their wake drought. The now unanchored soil dries and erodes.
 
The drought then helps kill more trees driving warming and drought further, bringing on the desert.
 
Modern civilization is turning the physical Earth as well as the human soul into a desert. That’s the end goal
 
Gaia will purge this vermin infestation, and she will continue in a new phase. The only question is whether humanity will continue after having done its best to commit suicide.
 
Will we?
 
 
 
 
 
Older Posts »