Volatility

February 9, 2019

The Purpose of Paris

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This one’s for the trees

 
 
“In more ingenuous times, when the tyrant razed cities for his own greater glory, when the slave chained to the conqueror’s chariot was dragged through the rejoicing streets, when enemies were thrown to the wild beasts in front of the assembled people, the mind did not reel before such unabashed crimes, and judgment remained unclouded. But slave camps under the flag of freedom, massacres justified by philanthropy or by a taste for the superhuman, in one sense cripple judgment. On the day when crime dons the apparel of innocence — through a curious transposition peculiar to our times — it is innocence that is called upon to justify itself.”
 
– Albert Camus, The Rebel
 
Some call it a loophole. If so it’s a loophole wide enough to push a dead planet through. But it’s really no accident.
 
There’s a clear and simple fact. Real conservation, especially in the face of the climate crisis, means ceasing from destroying natural forests, leaving them alone, and letting them resume their ranges. Anything other than this is a fraud, and especially a climate fraud. The “biomass” industry is an atrocity. The civilization destroys forests in order to burn wood pellets for industrial electricity and heat. This is enshrined within all existing international climate agreements. The climate industry accelerates deforestation and greenhouse emissions under the rubric of “the climate”. The flag of the Earth flies from the tree-burning factory. Arbeit Macht Frei.
 
 
The climate-industrial movement, including most of its critics, has exalted the 2015 Paris agreement as the movement’s climax achievement to date, its gold-mined standard for enlightened climate policy and especially for right belief.
 
Eco-hypocrisy and eco-treason is the worst kind, and the Paris crime reaches the worst extreme yet. All mainstream climate concern focuses not on saving the Earth but on finding a way to drag out the death march of production and feeding the consumption maw. The climate movement wants to drag out the consumer economy as long as possible and has no other goal. Paris is the epitome.
 
Natural forests are the primary carbon sinks. The primary goal of the Paris scam is to complete the destruction of all the world’s natural forests and replace them with ecologically dead tree plantations as part of an ongoing logging and coal-burning industry which will continue to be a massive emitter of carbon dioxide. Of course every acre of natural forest destroyed toward this goal releases all its stored carbon in a massive surge. Contrary to the Paris lies, this carbon surge will never be “recaptured”, and it’s not meant to be.
 
Thus Paris directly contradicts the climate movement’s own IPCC which in its most recent report stressed the critical need to preserve and restore natural forests to serve as permanent sinks.
 
The Environmental Paper Network recently released a report on the escalating subsidy-driven commodity wood pellet industry. Are Forests the New Coal? lays out a “global threat map” of the toxic politics of this meld of the logging industry, the coal industry, and the climate-industrial movement.
 
Here are the report’s “Key Findings”: 1. The production and burning of wood pellets has doubled over the last ten years to 14 million metric tons in 2017. The report cites industry projections which have the destruction increasing 250% to 36 million tonnes by 2027.
 
2. In climate-industrial propaganda usage, “renewable energy” and “carbon neutral” are fake terms. Most wood pellets are processed from whole trees and the complete destruction of natural forest sinks and biodiversity. The biomass industry drives climate change and mass extinction. It’s as non-renewable and anti-ecological as it gets.
 
3. Encouraged by the Western propaganda and practice as enshrined by Paris and other climate accords, such Asian countries as Japan and South Korea are planning a massive expansion of pellet imports and burning for industry electricity and heat.
 
4. The great bulk of industrial “biomass” comes from forests. It comes from the clear-cutting of natural forests and the farming of tree plantations which are cultivated on the ground where those massacres took place. This is a direct contradiction of the movement’s own IPCC, which stresses the critical importance of natural forests as carbon sinks.
 
5. The projected surge of wood pellet consumption will escalate the destruction of all remaining natural tropical, temperate, and boreal forests. Paris and the movement envision a world where ALL natural forest will be eradicated and where all logging will be done on industrialized tree plantations. This will be a world of radically higher atmospheric CO2 concentration, higher temperatures, greater climate chaos, and greatly escalated mass extinctions of every kind of plant and animal species.
 
 
Prior to the great escalation over the last ten years, and especially prior to the subsidy regime which Paris has escalated, pellet burning was less prominent and for the most part regionally based. But in ten years the international commodity stream has surged, with an increasing number of giant tree-burning factories. This expansion, this “growth”, this cancer is the real purpose of Paris.
 
For confirmation of intent, one need only look to the system of fraudulent accounting this and other agreements set up.
 
 
The EU and the various international climate mechanisms always have used false accounting to label things “carbon neutral”, and the climate movement then launders this fraud as “renewable”, “green”. The Paris scam is the culmination to date of this atrocious political process.
 
Before getting to the Paris crimes, let’s start with the fact that the proclaimed Paris goals are absurd. Paris enshrines 2 degrees Celsius as its temporary red line, though as heating increases the goalpost will move with it. Meanwhile the last time the atmospheric carbon concentration was above 400PPM, as it has been for several years now, the global temperature was 5-10 degrees higher than now. That much heating already is locked in, although temperatures will take some time to catch up to millions of years worth of carbon increase compressed into a hundred year deluge. And throughout the thirty years of the UN-enshrined climate movement emissions have continued to increase and have been increasing at an escalating rate. Emissions will continue to rise for as long as the industrial civilization exists. So the ultimate global heating will be higher than 5-10 degrees Celsius. How much higher depends solely on how long industrial emissions and destruction of sinks continue.
 
As if these goals aren’t pathetic enough in principle, they’re also purely voluntary. The Paris goals are a pure sham in every way.
 
In fact the only part of Paris which is not voluntary are the subsidies for logging and coal. And of course the dying – by trees, by native plants and animals, and if the architects have their way, by Gaia herself.
 
So in principle all Paris has are fake goals along with the fake premise of “green capitalism”, “green growth” aka cancer, and that there’s still a “carbon budget” left to spend. This “spending”, as they abstractly call it in their technocratic way, is direct ecological destruction in the real world, the deliberate extermination of hundreds of species per day.
 
The destruction wrought by wood pelleting is clear. It eradicates old-growth forests from northern Canada to the Amazon, Latvia to Borneo, and triggers a massive emission surge. There’s the initial hemorrhage from the destruction of forest sinks (and the lost uptake those forests would have performed in the future). Logging itself and the transportation of dead trees and processing them into pellets are carbon intensive industrial actions. On “managed” forests and tree plantations we can add the fossil fuels embedded in the massive volume of insecticides and herbicides sprayed, and the fuel for the aerial spraying. The tree-burning factories spew huge amounts of CO2. Burning wood for electricity emits 50% more CO2 per megawatt hour of electricity than coal. The factories also are major emitters of particulate pollution.
 
The double high-carbon impact of destroying natural sinks and the tree-burning process makes the Paris claim that the biomass industry is carbon neutral “doubly false” in the words of the EPN report.
 
Paris bases its “carbon neutral” claim on systematic accounting fraud. They start by simply refusing to count any emissions by the energy sector. These emissions are massive, far worse than burning coal, but Paris brazenly declares them to be zero. They claim to justify this by counting all the emissions of the entire process at the logging end. This is just a trick in order to claim they’ve attained carbon neutral electrical generation.* Meanwhile they grossly under-count the emissions at the logging end and then lie about “recycling” this carbon through industrial plantation trees. There are many lies in play here.
 
1. Destroying a natural forest (the most capacious mid-range ecological sink) causes a massive release of carbon. In principle a sanitized monoculture plantation could never assimilate more than a fraction of the carbon of an old-growth forest. The ecological basis for maximum tree growth and soil building doesn’t exist.
 
2. Plantation trees never come near reaching even this diminished potential since they’re harvested much younger than this. Natural forests are renewable in themselves if left alone. If they’re destroyed and prevented from regrowing, including replacement by factory-farmed tree plantations, they never renew themselves nor is their carbon ever stored. Monoculture industrial plantations are so unproductive and counter-productive as sinks as not to count. The entire process of destroying a forest and replacing it with a plantation adds up to a non-renewable and therefore unsustainable state. So the “carbon neutral” claim is a lie both in principle and in practice.
 
3. In a natural cycle some of the carbon taken down from the air is stored in the soil, and some flows in solution to the ocean and ends up as sedimentary limestone deposits. When civilization burns the trees and destroys the soil, 100% is emitted.
 
4. Then there’s the time frame which the Paris accounting pretends doesn’t exist. The process burns all the wood and releases all the CO2 today, and in return the Earth receives the Paris IOU promising to re-sequester all this carbon twenty years from now, thirty years, a hundred…As Derrick Jensen put it, “This is accounting fraudulent enough to make Enron jealous.”
 
These future carbon-sinking forests which exist only on the Paris books and will never exist except in their propaganda are a lot like Hitler’s ghost divisions which existed nowhere but on a map. By now the Earth-destroyer civilization is becoming more and more like Hitler in the bunker. One measure of this is its felt need for such massive lie campaigns.
 
So according to their own premise, the industrial biomass carbon cycle will take a long time. But their own propaganda also says there is no time, that societies need to act now. So there’s this direct self-contradiction within the climate-industrial propaganda.
 
In reality there’s no way such a program could ever do anything but escalate and accelerate the destruction of natural forests. Productionism, the framework which Paris and the movement seek to sustain, inherently always works toward oversupply and expansion. Therefore by design and inertia it always works to generate more demand for its supply. No one who knows anything about the production economy would be surprised by the projection of 250% expansion of tree destruction and pellet burning over the next ten years. Given any fuel, as Paris fuels this industry with subsidies and propaganda support, any industry will expand as far and destructively as is physically possible.
 
The fact is, anyone who really wanted the necessary immediate action would start with a total end to the destruction of natural forests. The mainstream movement’s own IPCC, as a rule conservative in its projections, even says so. The biomass industry as enshrined in the Paris agreement directly contradicts the IPCC.
 
The whole Paris regime of fraud with its “Renewable Energy Directive” is typical of the long-running fraud of the technocratic mainstream movement as a whole, in the tradition of “offsets” and other scams designed to mask escalated emissions and wholesale ecological destruction under the “climate” rubric.
 
Massacres justified by philanthropy, and indeed a taste for the superhuman.
 
The specific biomass accounting fraud and the propaganda of calling this non-renewable extraction industry “renewable” goes back to Kyoto in 1997.
 
 
The propaganda says the biomass material is supposed to come from “residues”. This is intended to put the public in mind of leftover shavings in timber plants and dead twigs and such. In reality it means any whole trees which are killed for pellet and biofuel processing rather than for lumber are classified as “residue”. It means that most pellet production comes from whole trees killed for this purpose, most of these coming from destroyed natural forests, while those from tree plantations come from ground where the natural forest or wetland was destroyed, releasing all its carbon along with the eradication of all its biodiversity.
 
Contrary to the lies, “sawmill residue” could never accommodate the surging subsidized production and artificially generated demand, only whole trees can. Therefore Paris enshrines this fraudulent accounting of whole trees as residues. This incentive for logging trees not suitable for timber is a great driver of quantity-based deforestation. As the EPN report says, “The income generated by high-intensity harvests based on quantity criteria may make more logging operations financially viable, as compared to those operations constrained to take high quality wood alone. In places where the community is struggling to retain natural forests the advent of such a lucrative, incentives-based ‘residue’ trade can drive further logging incursions and promote clear-cutting as a logging method.”
 
This escalation of logging and in particular clear-cutting natural forests is the intended purpose of Paris. Otherwise the accord wouldn’t have gone so far out of its way to legalize this fraudulent accounting.
 
 
Since this destruction of natural forests and use of plantation trees competes with use for lumber, pulp, and other industries, it drives further logging and deforestation. If one acre of forest was slated to be clear-cut for lumber (or one acre of a plantation on a formerly forested site), and now you add an acre for wood pellets for industrial electricity, that obviously requires doubling the deforesting.
 
In the same way, they tout how some biomass comes from agricultural leftovers like straw and stover. But this means stripping agricultural land of the residues needed to maintain the soil, thus hastening its own process of destroying the soil and having to move on to further deforestation and wetland destruction.
 
This depletion of agricultural soil also drives the escalated use of synthetic fertilizers and pesticides (the lower quality the soil, the more you need). The vicious circle is total.
 
Finally, the Paris drive to maximize the replacement of forests with tree plantations for maximum biomass and biofuel production is a great spur to the campaign to deploy GM trees, especially fire-prone and destructively invasive eucalyptus, which grow faster and/or are better composed for processing into biofuels. In turn, the alleged “need” for this technology is in order to feed the Paris maw. They mass murder trees to run their pleasure cars.
 
All this is environmentalism, according to our “climate movement”.
 
 
The privileged method of burning trees includes “co-firing”. This means wood pellets are mixed with coal before burning. It’s cheaper for coal-burning factories to retool for combined wood-coal burning than to switch completely from coal to wood. This reinforces the Paris goal of artificially propping up both the logging and coal industries at the expense of the climate, Earth, and public. The policy is designed to extend the life of coal-fired power factories. France in particular has been explicit that one of its primary goals was to economically prop up coal-mining. No wonder the recent COP24 in Poland, where one of the purposes was to further hammer out procedural details for carrying out the Paris guidelines, was openly sponsored by Big Coal. All this under the flag of “the climate”. (I first typed “Big Caol”, as if really for Big Gaol. Not really a slip, but expresses reality.)
 
This is the culmination so far of Big Green’s Judenrate ideology based on collaborating with the mass murderers in order to “have a place at the table” to “manage” the ecocide-genocide. This mindset and practice goes back to the 1970s, with the mainstream corporate-dominion-environmental groups espousing an ideology which can be summed up as: Industry is good, industry is natural, industry is ecological, ecocide is ecological, destruction is conservation. As then-president of the National Wildlife Federation Jay Hair put it while denouncing the attempts of EarthFirst! and others to actually defend the Earth, “there’s no fundamental difference between destroying a river and destroying a bulldozer” (cf. Green Rage by Christopher Manes, p. 17). Which of course really means the bulldozer has precedence and right to destroy the river, destroy the forest, destroy the wetland, destroy the entire Earth. The statement is incomprehensible in any other way.
 
 
The “biomass” atrocity is the most clear proof to date that it’s impossible to do anything real within the capitalist framework, and more broadly the framework of the production-consumption civilization. It proves the politics and the culture are impossible. The grossly destructive production sectors play whack-a-mole. Try to reduce the subsidy for fossil fuels and “biomass” pops up. And as we saw, the biomass scam is based on fossil fuels and specifically designed to entrench coal-burning within the “climate” framework.
 
It’s impossible to go beyond fossil fuels anyway under the framework of modern civilization, since modernity is founded on fossil fuels. The definition of “modern” is: The period of the mass extraction and burning of fossil fuels. Industrialization inherently depends on fossil fuels and all alleged alternatives actually depend on the fossil foundation.
 
The climate-industrial movement and mainstream environmentalism as a whole want to save the industrial capitalist economy, not the planet. They’re usually explicit about this, citing their desire to save “civilization”, aka the modern production-consumption civilization. Anyone who really wanted to save the planet would have very different goals, very different demands and would organize and act in a very different way.
 
Mainstream environmentalism is just like a dope fiend trying to negotiate some level of continuing drug binge which somehow wouldn’t be as addictive and destructive as what he’s doing now.
 
Every prescription, every policy of the climate-industrial movement has zero secular purpose but to Feed the Maw. Maximum production is necessary to satisfy maximum demand, and maximum demand needs to be artificially drummed up to provide a market and “use” for maximum over-supplied production. This hideous circle swirls round and round in the most all-destructive escalating feedback loop. The Paris agreement, and all the works of mainstream Big Green, are dedicated to continuing this vicious circle unto the final lethal exhaustion of Gaia and humanity.
 
In the meantime they work to misdirect action in order to waste time and good will we no longer have to waste (contrary to the lies about “carbon budgets”), and to sow cynicism among those who might truly want to fight for the Earth, to sow denial that this is possible at all. It’s a massive sheep-dogging and gate-keeping campaign. It’s a big con.
 
 
There’s one and only one way to avert the worst of the climate crisis and the ecological crisis as a whole. This way is threefold:
 
*End all industrial emissions; *Stop destroying sinks; *Rebuild sinks and let natural sinks resume their natural ranges.
 
This is the only way to avert a total Gaian phase change which almost certainly would cause the biological extinction of hominids (unless we figure out a quicker way to wipe ourselves out), the only way to arrest the ongoing mass extinction, the only way to save anything of humanity.
 
Of course this would mean the end of industrial civilization, the end of extreme energy consumption, the end of the production-consumption framework, the end of capitalism, the end of grotesque consumerism and materialism. It would also mean the regeneration of health, happiness, and freedom as the only truly human purposes.
 
Therefore this way is anathema to the modern civilization and its tendrils, including the mainstream corporate environmental tentacle.
 
Does this faction have any ecological goal at all? With its exaltation of the biomass scam and the campaign to finish modern civilization’s extermination of the forests, we have the final smoking gun, the smoking chainsaw, the smoking ashes of the burned forest. The all-consuming fire, symbolized and fetishized in the tree-burning factory, is the real goal. Thus the climate change movement wants climate change all right. Until industrialization collapses or is abolished through an act of human self-preservation, they will drive global heating, the desert, and the flames of the wildfires as far as these can be driven. Every aspect of the modern civilization is nothing but an aspect of the hatred of life and lust for death.
 
 
 
 
*This is part of the general fraudulent practice of moving things off the books of the energy (electricity) sector and/or using the term “energy” to stand only for the electrical sector. And it’s part of the overall move of depicting climate change as identical to the ecological crisis as such, with all other elements of this crisis being relegated to non-existence for official purposes. Anytime you see claims about “100% renewable energy”, if you look at the small print you’ll usually find scams like these.
 
Then we have the broader deception of the whole notion of “renewable energy”. According to 2015 OECD numbers for industrialized countries (as reproduced in the EPN report), what they dub “renewable” makes up less than 10% of their energy production. Of this 9.7%, over 53% is “Biofuels and waste”, i.e. industrial biomass.
 
But since this all is from newly destroyed natural forest or high-impact industrial farming on land where the natural sink was destroyed, to call this “renewable” is a lie. Therefore over half of what they call “renewable” is the non-renewable (within the industrial framework) destruction of sinks. The other industries called “renewable” – industrial wind, solar, hydro, etc. – also are all directly eco-destructive and depend upon a foundation of fossil fuels. None can be self-sustaining, and none is renewable in any non-Orwellian way. It’s an axiom: Nothing industrial and nothing commodified ever can be renewable.
 
 
 
 

January 14, 2019

A Desert of the Soul

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The Sahara, a favorite target to be covered with one huge electricity factory

 
 
At first glance the natural desert may not look as lavish as a rain forest. But the natural desert is full of diverse life, efflorescent, and very fragile.
 
“During my weeks in the field, the paleontologists leading the expedition repeatedly warned us not to “bust the crust,” a reference to the paper-thin desert “glue” that covers much of the ground in the desert southwest.
 
This unprepossessing knobby black varnish is actually Cryptobiotic soil, a biologically active film that takes decades to form yet has big effects on everything from storing spring runoff to allowing plants to fix nitrogen in sandy ground. This in turn supports a healthy habitat for herbivores and predators, like the large rattlesnake I encountered one afternoon sporting a suspiciously mouse-sized lump in its midsection.
 
The soil is so fragile that some dig sites require that even theropod bones, which can weigh hundreds of pounds, be carried out on foot, since wheeled vehicles of any kind cause too much damage to the landscape.
 
If something as small as a single wheelbarrow can do years of damage to the desert, imagine how destructive uranium mining will be.”
 
A careful dinosaur dig must take such precautions. As she says, imagine the destruction to be wrought by uranium mining (remember that next time you hear a shill touting nukes on “climate” grounds, and know how much he really cares about the Earth). Imagine the destruction wrought by oil and gas drilling.
 
In the same way, imagine the destruction wrought by vast CSP industrial electricity-generation factories such as the one which destroyed a large swath of the Mojave Desert, with near-full support from California’s “environmental movement”, so that Los Angeles industry could continue to burn cheap electricity.
 
The Big Green climate-industrial complex spits on the desert ecology for the sake of their industrial fetish. As I wrote earlier, the corporate environmental movement has perfect consensus with the corporate destroyers of the Earth on total commitment to the production-consumption economy. Therefore all prescriptions touted by the establishment climate movement really have zero to do with the climate or with any other ecological crisis but have everything to do with saving the cancer economy (the metastatic “growth” economy) from its own death wish.
 
As Derrick Jensen put it, “The desert is being sacrificed not, as the article states, to save the earth, but to generate electricity—primarily for industry. The earth doesn’t need this electricity: industry does. But then again, from this narcissistic perspective, industry is the earth. There is and can be nothing except for industry.”
 
 
Corporations, the government, NGOs, the Democrat Party, all work to co-opt and hijack every social and ecological movement.
 
The climate movement was pre-co-opted. Before most of the people became aware of the crisis the “movement” already had coalesced on a technocratic basis, a basis of UN conferences, international accords, Big NGO marketing campaigns, “sustainability” initiatives at Walmart, top-down (usually wonkish) prescriptions and policy.
 
The purpose of this pre-fabricated establishment-led movement was never real climate action but the fake facade of it. That’s why the movement’s been active for over thirty years (the IPCC was established in 1988) and over that entire time emissions have continued to increase, at an accelerating rate, and sinks continue to be destroyed at an escalating rate. And now we have the Paris accord whose primary purpose is to accelerate the destruction of what’s left of Earth’s forests (the most important carbon sinks) in the name of “the climate” (the “biomass” scam and assault). Arbeit Macht Frei.
 
You don’t like what Bolsonaro threatens to do to the Amazon? He’s just following the Paris playbook.
 
Here’s the real purposes of the mainstream technocratic climate movement.
 
1. This faction among the technocrats believes that climate chaos and peak oil will destroy the existing fossil-based economy, and they’re looking for a way to preserve industrial cancer (“growth”), productionism-consumerism, capitalism, elite power, and extreme material luxury for the elites.
 
2. This faction includes many corporate sectors which can profit from an industrial “climate” program, especially something on the scale and subsidy level of the Manhattan Project or Apollo program, to name two of the favored militarist metaphors of the climate mandarins. These sectors include industrial renewables, finance (“offsets”, carbon taxes, “cap-and-trade” etc.), Big NGOs (nominally non-profit, effectively profiteering), along with new subsidized markets for industrial agriculture (“climate-smart agriculture”, Monsanto’s “Climate Corporation”), automakers (electric vehicles as loss-leaders, the upscale hybrid market, all to mask the real goal of increasing SUV sales), logging and coal (the biomass scam), and yet more subsidies for Big Oil, nukes, and other hoary destroyer sectors.
 
3. The climate movement is a happy hunting ground for the scientism wingnuts who now have political space to propagate such deranged notions as geoengineering, biofuels from genetically engineered algae, or ramping up the space program since Homo domesticus soon will need a new planet to destroy. These psychopaths gain legitimacy when they cloak their planetary serial-killer fantasies in “climate” garb.
 
4. And then we have the standard, inescapable liberal hypocrisy. If you shed crocodile tears for the climate, donate to a Big Green corporate front group like the World Wildlife Fund or Nature Conservancy, sign some online petitions and vote Democrat, then you can go about your extreme high-carbon, high-impact, Earth-destroying Western lifestyle in perfect serenity of conscience.
 
 
No doubt this technocratic cultural wave is part of the reason there’s so many de jure denialists among the 99% who can’t benefit from climate denial and can only be harmed by climate chaos itself. But like creationism, and fundamentalism among the three Abrahamic religions as such (a purely modern phenomenon, in spite of moronic epithets like how it’s a “medieval” mentality), bottom-up climate denial (which is different from but tutored and exploited by astroturfed top-down denial led by Big Oil – the flip side of the top-down climate-industrial complex) is a reaction against technocracy and scientism.
 
 
For the moment, for as long as fossil fuels remain cheap and plentiful (so-called “renewable” industrial energy is completely dependent upon fossil fuels for parts, transportation, much of its own fuel, and the vast majority of the fuel for the productionist economy which industrial renewables are intended to help prop up for a little while longer), the electricity is cheap and plentiful. The electricity as well as the coal, oil, and gas are cheap since the Earth pays almost all of the cost. That’s the essence of the parasite and vandal civilization.
 
It’s clear that any movement true to the ecological heart, faithful to the Earth cannot proceed in any such way. The production-consumption-technocratic Extreme Energy Civilization itself is destroying the Earth including natural humanity, the human soul. Wherever this civilization goes, on the Earth and into our minds and souls, it leaves nothing but desert.
 
This desert has nothing in common with the natural diverse flowering desert. It’s the desert of wasteland, a dead zone.
 
The industrial climate movement, like the corporate industrial environmental movement as a whole, offers nothing to Gaia or her human element. Like all that’s industrial, all that’s productionist, all that’s corporate, all that’s mass-produced, commodified and consumed, it offers nothing but destruction.
 
Gaia hovers at the brink of the great Kinesis, the great phase change. The cancer civilization will not survive it. Homo domesticus will be the keystone victim of its own onslaught of mass extinction. Humanity itself will survive only if we start heading home to Earth right now. The only idea sufficient to the crisis, the only movement, the only culture, the only politics, is the Gaian movement. This is the only way home. All else is the politics of parasite squatters and vandals.
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

January 9, 2019

The Housebroken Environmental Movement

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You can’t “vote” against this. Indeed those who vote all vote for it.

 
 
As a rule, people’s principles and goals boil down to what they personally want to do. Every religion started with the invention of the kind of gods the inventors wanted, and everything followed from there. One starts with desire and ramifies a philosophy and program from this all-too-human wellspring. There are few exceptions, the main one being understanding of the physical and biological crisis of the global ecology.
 
Ironically, the mainstream environmental movement is one of the worst examples of self-indulgence. It is congenitally hobbled by the fact that its participants and supporters mostly are middle class types who have faith in the Extreme Energy Civilization, who desire its high-energy, high-maintenance, high-input, high-impact junk, and therefore whose “environmentalism” can only be an afterthought to these and can exist only within that consumerist framework. They then generate the political ideology which goes with this consumerism – statism, regulatory bureaucracy, politics conducted through government-controlled elections. All quite prim and proper and well-monocultured. This is why all mainstream environmentalism is performed within the framework of productionism-consumptionism, capitalism, technocracy. That’s why all its prescriptions boil down to “Keep Shopping!”
 
 
In many pieces over the years I’ve offered my corporate regulator template. Its explanatory and predictive power surpasses any other model I’ve seen. It goes:
 
1. Corporate productionism must always go forward. Its core imperatives of profit, power, control, and techno-religiosity must never be hindered.
 
2. Given (1), the regulator may sometimes work to mitigate the worst extremes, illegalities, “abuses” of corporate action. More often it only pretends to be taking action but never does. Often it doesn’t even pretend.
 
3. The regulator then puts its imprimatur on the corporate project, assures the public that things are orderly, sound, safe. Most of all it conveys the message that knowledge and action can be left to the regulator, and that the people should be content to accept the dispensation, relinquish all public responsibility and concern, get on with their private affairs.
 
Thus the regulatory bureaucratic model is anti-political, anti-participation, anti-democracy, but rather works to enshrine and reinforce authoritarian technocracy (but with a pseudo-democratic facade – that’s what the fake elections, and the ideology of electoralism, are for).
 
The regulatory ideology is an outgrowth of liberal ideology, which rose out of capitalism as a mode of indoctrination against the cooperative social primate nature we evolved over millions of years and into a competitive, privately-oriented, self-indulgent individualism. In this case the public faith in regulators, and the corporate state as such including its fake electoralism, dovetails perfectly with the brain-washed urge to fixate on one’s individual predicament, ignore our collective plight, and automatically reject all thought of real organization and organic community.
 
I first developed the template to apply to pro-corporate regulators like the EPA, FDA, USDA in their context of assisting poison-based agriculture. I quickly found the template applies just as well to all regulators, the media, academia, the legal system, the scientific establishment, establishment funders and NGOs, individual opinion leaders. In every case (1) is the same: Corporate productionism, or the productionist civilization no matter how it’s formally organized, must continue. Nothing the entity does must try significantly to hinder productionism or call it into question in any way.
 
This applies especially well to mainstream environmentalism, and most of all to the climate-industrial complex. Climate scientists, all mainstream activism, all mainstream media coverage (for that matter almost all “alternative” coverage), all academic study, all prescriptions (here too mainstream and “alternative” meld as one), all adhere to this template:
 
1. The productionist Extreme Energy Civilization, usually in its capitalist form (some alternatives call for “socialism”, but only as a cosmetic formal change – it’s still the same extreme energy productionism), must continue no matter what.
 
2. Given (1) they may try to reduce some emissions in some cherry-picked way, preserve some wilderness here, an endangered species there, all on an ad hoc basis. More often they only pretend to do these. Their touted climate solutions are usually based on inherent false accounting, including the monumental “offset” fraud, and are ecologically highly destructive in themselves such as the mining required for industrial “renewables”. Of course electric cars, biomass, and biofuels are both horrifically destructive and examples of fraudulent carbon accounting.
 
For Big Green NGOs (1) is always primary and getting big funding always second. Or we could conflate these – they combine to give the NGO a mandate to collaborate with the destroyers of the Earth rather than oppose them. And indeed many NGOs are nothing but corporate front groups, while others pick and choose where to explicitly collaborate and where to pretend to oppose. Even those who sometimes do oppose do so firmly within the civilization’s framework and assume the productionist imperative as God-given.
 
And then good liberal individualists can mouth the words, sign a petition, contribute to the World Wildlife Fund or the Nature Conservancy, vote Democrat. In other words do nothing, and in fact support the ongoing massacre, but attain cheap grace.
 
3. Then the “movement” puts its imprimatur on the state of things. Corporate collaboration deals mean progress, they assure us. If the NGO says a deal has done real preservation work it must be true. At any rate the official NGO-coordinated Movement is on it, and all the people need to do is support the movement, accept its prescriptions as sufficient and practicable, sign and vote where told, of course donate, and otherwise get on with their non-political, apolitical, anti-political private lives.
 
Today, indeed, Politics is Dead. To a big extent this is because the natural political space has been constricted and filled by the kind of fake politics described here. One might shrug and think that’s all the more reason to go with the private individualist flow.
 
But the vaster reason there are no longer meaningful politics is that all struggles internal to civilization pale and shrink in the face of the mounting, already catastrophic ecological crisis being driven by the war this civilization has launched against the Earth. By now everything fades in the spotlight of the only real Either/Or left: Are you willingly part of the onslaught or do you oppose it.
 
To be clear, one can’t burn down one’s house and live in it too. In the millennial war of Man vs. Nature, “man” always was doomed to lose. Homo domesticus certainly will become the showcase victim of this Sixth Mass Extinction event it has launched. Just as prior mass extinctions are named after the formal time periods they cap and bring to a close, so the most appropriate use of the otherwise suspect term “Anthropocene” will be to denominate the (very short) period which closed with the extinction of “civilized” hominids. Whether the hominid species will go physically extinct depends to a large extent on how many people choose a new ecological road home now, and how well we work to endure the imminent great storms of history, climate, biology.
 
It’s an irony that the movement which first had inklings of all this seems to have domesticated itself out of any potential to help with this necessary transformation. But anyone fixated on a “green new deal” amid their ongoing dealing gaming life isn’t going to be able to help escape the casino, or indeed even to understand the concept. And in fact they love the casino, love the gamble, love the rush. And to switch to a closely related metaphor, they’re addicted to the drug. They only squabble with fellow addicts over who’s using too much etc. Where it comes to the productionist civilization that’s barely a metaphor; it pretty much directly describes the psychosis of stuff.
 
And this, along with the theological urge to destruction all the civilized have in common, is what the civilized truly desire. Their “politics” never will transcend this. We who want the great transformation, and we who recognize the ecological necessity, must burn our bridges once and for all. As we see, Gaia shall insist regardless.
 
 
 
 
 

January 6, 2019

Either/Or

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Eucalyptus plantations, “gasoline trees” as South American community peoples call them because they’re so incendiary, burn in Portugal in 2017 killing over sixty, burning them alive in their cars. The plantations burn in Chile, in Africa, in Australia, soon GMO plantations will bring flaming death to the US Southeast. And the same fires burn across the globe, everywhere the natural habitats have been devastated and parched. This civilization will burn every last BTU’s worth it can, will burn every last splinter, will dry every last clod of soil, will pump every last molecule of carbon, will poison every drop of water, will kill every plant and animal, will be as a mythologist of modernity wrote “free and wild and beyond good and evil, with laws and morals thrown aside and all men shouting and killing and reveling in joy”, until Gaia finally puts an end to the horror.
 
 
It’s self-evident that profit-seeking corporations can never seek any goal other than power and profit. By definition they can’t be enlisted toward any other goal. Any other goal automatically would constitute a constraint on maximal profit-seeking.
 
This is logically self-evident. And for those who don’t trust logic, we have the entire evidence record of capitalist history proving it out. Without exception every example where profiteering was enlisted on behalf of a goal outside the pentacle of power, the venal motive always hijacked, distorted, destroyed the nominal goal. And that’s not even taking into account technocratic religious hatred of nature and freedom. This has been most obvious through the tragic and treacherous history of the environmental movement, whose mainstream quickly decided to become an adjunct of the corporate state with results which easily were predicted.
 
This is obvious to anyone who knows history or who has common sense. At this late date, at this extreme of the crisis, anyone who still claims to believe it’s possible to seek a climate goal through a corporate tollbooth is a liar or an idiot. There’s no other option.
 
Then we have the mass of mainstream environmentalists, Big Green NGOs, climate scientists, progressive and fake “socialist” politicians, and the mainstream media. We have thirty years of a unified, highly visible, lavishly financed climate movement, all dedicated to the proposition that the way to solve the climate crisis is to enlist the profit motive and set up more corporate tollbooths. This movement has accomplished nothing but ever rising emissions and corporate subsidies, ever more severe climatic effects, and ever more threadbare rationales from the likes of the IPCC for how civilization still has time to make those tollbooths work.
 
To the extent these are idiots rather than conscious liars, they comprise those who have been so brain-washed that they assume corporate profit-seeking as literally a law of the universe and find the claim that profiteering and any other goal are mutually exclusive, or very idea of an alternative to profiteering, inconceivable. Therefore they assume on faith that the climate answer has to be a profit-seeking answer. And since this is the only way possible, and since they want it to work, therefore it has to work. That’s their mode of magical thinking. They want the cancer economy (“growth”), they want the resource intensive worthless junk, they want their fundamentalism of Extreme Energy, and so they must have it, and their climate too.
 
For them this is religion, and in the world of the Western middle class corporate system they exclusively inhabit, its cultural and intellectual life, this religion is thus far an unchallenged theocracy. And like the faithful flock of any other theocracy, they don’t see their religion as a religion, indeed can’t comprehend having things phrased to them that way.
 
For example, last week I got into an online argument with someone who vehemently insisted that climate scientists are not pro-capitalist shills across the board, invariably touting nothing but corporate profit-seeking “solutions” to the climate crisis and invariably insisting that the climate crisis can and must be solved purely within the framework of capitalism. (Typical examples – industrial “renewables”, biomass, biofuels, electric cars, carbon taxes, cap-and-trade, “offsets” and similar long-proven frauds, all purely within the framework of capitalism and productionism/consumptionism as such.) This person demanded I give him an example of a pro-capitalist climate scientist. Amazed at such cluelessness, I cited their big climate hero James Hansen (who has never touted anything but capitalism and these days has a second career as a nuke shill) and from there could only reply “Show me an example of one who doesn’t.” This person is typical of a mainstream “environmental” type so inured to an economy, polity, and culture completely dominated by the capitalist imperative that to say to him “climate scientists are pro-capitalist” is like saying to a fish, “you swim in water.” A fish would have no intellectual notion of what water (or swimming) are. In the same way, the devotees of any theocracy don’t recognize themselves as “religious” or their system as a theocracy. To them such things are just the way of the world. Only under pluralistic conditions do people even develop such words and concepts as “religion”.
 
What follows from this? It’s not only impossible to work constructively toward any real action within the system, it’s practically impossible even to talk about it with system devotees, the faithful flock of “green capitalism”, a “green new deal”, a UN climate conference directly sponsored by Big Coal, IPCC reports designed mostly to keep moving the theoretical goal posts to assure its constituency there’s still time and a “carbon budget” left to burn, a Paris scam designed mostly to give political cover for the final destruction of the world’s forests and grasslands under the rubric of a planetary Arbeit Macht Frei of climate policy called “biomass”.
 
And the whole congregation keeps holy rolling with hymns to “1.5 degrees” (or the Paris-enshrined 2 degrees, depending on which establishment climate preacher one follows), dispensing the old snake oil (and of course palm oil). Yet reality says the last time the global atmospheric carbon concentration was above 400PPM, as it has been for several years now, the global temperature was 5-10 degrees higher than now. That much heating already is locked in, although temperatures will take some time to catch up to millions of years worth of carbon increase compressed into a hundred year deluge.
 
And the carbon will continue to escalate, and escalate at an increasing rate as it’s been doing throughout the UNFCCC period. The atmospheric concentration, and the eventual heating, will continue to escalate for as long as the Extreme Energy Civilization exists. So wave bye-bye to 1.5 degrees, let alone to “350” PPM, a fake goal one prominent mainstream sect names itself after. The Earth already is at 410PPM and surging. We won’t see 350 again until hundreds of years after the demise of the technocratic-industrial civilization.
 
 
Again we come down to the need to burn our ships and build a movement completely outside and against the system, very likely with no adherents who ever had any stake in the system, and devote this movement to preparing for the imminent catastrophes and collapses as Gaia goes kinetic and the Earth’s reaction against civilization’s vermin onslaught gathers force. Prepare to endure this storm, and the inevitable extreme violence of an already ultra-violent civilization now in its death throes. Prepare to endure these storms, and speak truth, spread the word of the coming storm – what the Shock Civilization is, what it has wrought, what the inevitable ecological shock reactions are and shall magnify to become, how the burning tower shall never quench its own flame but only do all it can to spread the flame to consume the entire Earth if it doesn’t collapse first, and therefore why nothing can be done with this system and nothing hoped for; but also what must and can be done outside and beyond the system, and what an ecological way of life, what restored natural communities such as those humanity enjoyed for thousands of years before being forced out upon the death march, will truly mean……