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Collapse Is Already Here

It's a process, not an event
Friday, January 25, 2019, 9:18 PM

Many people are expecting some degree of approaching collapse -- be it economic, environmental and/or societal -- thinking that they’ll recognize the danger signs in time. 

As if it will be completely obvious, like a Hollywood blockbuster. Complete with clear warnings from scientists, politicians and the media.  And everyone can then get busy either panicking or becoming the plucky heroes. 

That's not how collapse works.

Collapse is a process, not an event.

And it's already underway, all around us. 

Collapse is already here.

However, unlike Hollywood's vision, the early stages of collapse cause people to cling even tighter to the status quo. Instead of panic in the streets, we simply see more of the same -- as those in power do all they can to remain so, while the majority of the public attempts to ignore the growing problems for as long as it possibly can.

For both the elite and the majority, their entire world view and their personal sense of self depends on things not crumbling all around them, so they remain willfully blind to any evidence to the contrary.

When faced with the predicaments we warn about here at PeakProsperity.com, getting an early start on prudently shifting your own personal situation is of vital strategic and tactical importance. Tens of thousands of our readers already have taken wise steps in their lives to position themselves resiliently.

But most of the majority won't get started until it’s entirely too late to make any difference at all. Which is sad but perhaps unavoidable, given human nature.

If everybody around you is saying “Everything is awesome!”, it can take a long time to determine for yourself that things in fact aren't:

Real collapse happens slowly, and often without any sort of acknowledgement by the so-called political and economic elites until its abrupt terminal end.

The degree of rot within the Soviet Union went undetected until its final implosion, catching pretty much everyone in the West (as well as in the former USSR!) by surprise.   

Similarly, one day people woke up and passenger pigeons were extinct.  They used to literally darken the skies for hours as they migrated past, numbering in the billions. Nobody planned on their demise and virtually nobody saw it coming.  Sure, just as there always are, a few crackpots at the fringes noticed, but they were ignored until it was too late.

Our view is that collapse of our current way of life is happening right now. The signs are all around us.  Our invitation is for you to notice them and inquire critically what the ramifications will be -- irrespective of whatever pablum our leaders and media are currently spewing.

While the monetary and financial elites strain to crank out one more day/week/month/year of “market stability”, the ecosystems we depend on for life are vanishing. It's as if the Rapture were happening, but it's the insects, plants and animals ascending to heaven instead of we humans.

Committing Ecocide

Be very skeptical when the cause of each new ecological nightmare is ascribed to “natural causes.” 

While it’s entire possible for any one ecological mishap to be due to a natural cycle, it’s weak thinking to assign the same cause to dozens of troubling findings happening all over the globe.

As they say in the military: Once is an accident. Twice is a coincidence. But three times is enemy action.

Right now, Australia is in the middle of the summer season and being absolutely hammered by high heat.  Sure it gets hot during an Australian summer, but not like this. The impact has been devastating:

Australia's Facing an Unprecedented Ecological Crisis, But No One's Paying Attention

Jan 9, 2019

It started in December, just before Christmas.

Hundreds of dead perch were discovered floating along the banks of the Darling River – victims of a "dirty, rotten green" algae bloom spreading in the still waters of the small country town of Menindee, Australia.

Things didn't get better. The dead hundreds became dead thousands, as the crisis expanded to claim the lives of 10,000 fish along a 40-kilometre (25-mile) stretch of the river. But the worst was still yet to come.

This week, the environmental disaster has exploded to a horrific new level – what one Twitter user called "Extinction level water degradation" – with reports suggesting up to a million fish have now been killed in a new instance of the toxic algae bloom conditions.

For their part, authorities in the state of New South Wales have only gone as far as confirming "hundreds of thousands" of fish have died in the event – but regardless of the exact toll, it's clear the deadly calamity is an unprecedented ecological disaster in the region's waterways.

"I've never seen two fish kills of this scale so close together in terms of time, especially in the same stretch of river," fisheries manager Iain Ellis from NSW Department of Primary Industries (DPI) explained to ABC News.

The DPI blames ongoing drought conditions for the algae bloom's devastating impact on local bream, cod, and perch species – with a combination of high temperature and chronic low water supply (along with high nutrient concentrations in the water) making for a toxic algal soup.

(Source)

Watching the video above showing grown men crying over the loss of 100-year-old fish is heartbreaking. This fish kill is described as “unprecedented” and as an “extinction level event", meaning it left no survivors over a long stretch of waterway.

We can try to console oursleves that maybe this was just a singular event, a cluster of bad juju and worse waterway management that combined to give us this horror -- but it wasn’t.

It's part of a larger tapestry of heat-induced misery that Australia is facing:

How one heatwave killed 'a third' of a bat species in Australia

Jan 15, 2019

Over two days in November, record-breaking heat in Australia's north wiped out almost one-third of the nation's spectacled flying foxes, according to researchers.

The animals, also known as spectacled fruit bats, were unable to survive in temperatures which exceeded 42C.

"It was totally depressing," one rescuer, David White, told the BBC.

Flying foxes are no more sensitive to extreme heat than some other species, experts say. But because they often gather in urban areas in large numbers, their deaths can be more conspicuous, and easily documented.

"It raises concerns as to the fate of other creatures who have more secretive, secluded lifestyles," Dr Welbergen says.

He sees the bats as the "the canary in the coal mine for climate change".

(Source)

A two-day heatwave last November (2018) was sufficient to kill up to a third of all Australia's known flying foxes, a vulnerable species that was already endangered.  As those bats are well-studied and their deaths quite conspicuous to observers, it raises the important question: How many other less-scrutinized species are dying off at the same time?

And the death parade continues:

Are these data points severe enough for you to recognize as signs of ongoing collapse?

Last summer was a time of extreme drought and heat for Australia, and this summer looks set to be even worse. This may be the country's  'new normal' for if the situation is due to climate change instead of just an ordinary (if punishing) hot cycle. 

If so, these heat waves will likely intensify over time, completely collapsing the existing biological systems across Australia.

Meanwhile, nearby in New Zealand, similar species loss is underway:

'Like losing family': time may be running out for New Zealand's most sacred tree

July 2018

New Zealand’s oldest and most sacred tree stands 60 metres from death, as a fungal disease known as kauri dieback spreads unabated across the country.

Tāne Mahuta (Lord of the Forest) is a giant kauri tree located in the Waipoua forest in the north of the country, and is sacred to the Māori people, who regard it as a living ancestor.

The tree is believed to be around 2,500 years old, has a girth of 13.77m and is more than 50m tall.

Thousands of locals and tourists alike visit the tree every year to pay their respects, and take selfies beside the trunk.

Now, the survival of what is believed to be New Zealand’s oldest living tree is threatened by kauri dieback, with kauri trees a mere 60m from Tāne Mahuta confirmed to be infected.

Kauri dieback causes most infected trees to die, and is threatening to completely wipe out New Zealand’s most treasured native tree species, prized for its beauty, strength and use in boats, carvings and buildings.

“We don’t have any time to do the usual scientific trials anymore, we just have to start responding immediately in any way possible; it is not ideal but we have kind of run out of time,” Black says, adding that although there is no cure for kauri dieback there is a range of measures which could slow its progress.

(Source)

People are rallying to try and save the kauri trees, although it’s unclear exactly how to stop the spread of the new fungal invader or why it's so pathogenic all of a sudden.  It could be due to another natural sort of cycle (except the fungus was thought to have been introduced and spread by human activity) or it could be a another collapse indicator we need to finally hear and heed.

It turns out that New Zealand is not alone. Giant trees are dying all over the globe.

2,000-year-old baobab trees in Africa are suddenly and rather mysteriously giving up the ghost.  These trees survived happily for 2,000 years and now all of a sudden they're dying. Are the deaths of our most ancient trees all across the globe some sort of natural process? Or is there a different culprit we need to recognize?

In Japan they're lamenting record low squid catches.  Oh well, maybe it’s just overfishing?  Or could it be another message we need to heed?

To all this we can add the numerous scientific articles now decrying the 'insect Apocalypse' unfolding across the northern hemisphere. The Guardian recently issued this warning: “Insect collapse: ‘We are destroying our life support systems’”. Researchers in Puerto Rico's forest preserves recorded a 98% decline in insect mass over 35 years.  Does a 98% decline have a natural explanation? Or is something bigger going on?

Meanwhile, the butterfly die-off is unfolding with alarming speed. I rarely see them in the summer anymore, much to my great regret.  Seeing one is now as exciting as seeing a meteor streak across the sky, and just as rare:

Monarch butterfly numbers plummet 86 percent in California

Jan 7, 2019

CAMARILLO, Calif. – The number of monarch butterflies turning up at California's overwintering sites has dropped by about 86 percent compared to only a year ago, according to the Xerces Society, which organizes a yearly count of the iconic creatures.

That’s bad news for a species whose numbers have already declined an estimated 97 percent since the 1980s.

Each year, monarchs in the western United States migrate from inland areas to California’s coastline to spend the winter, usually between September and February.

“It’s been the worst year we’ve ever seen,” said Emma Pelton, a conservation biologist with the Xerces Society who helps lead the annual Thanksgiving count. “We already know we’re dealing with a really small population, and now we have a really bad year and all of a sudden, we’re kind of in crisis mode where we have very, very few butterflies left.”

What’s causing the dramatic drop-off is somewhat of a mystery. Experts believe the decline is spurred by a confluence of unfortunate factors, including late rainy-season storms across California last March, the effects of the state’s years long drought and the seemingly relentless onslaught of wildfires that have burned acres upon acres of habitat and at times choked the air with toxic smoke.

(Source)

Note the “explanation” given blames the decline on mostly natural processes: late storms, droughts and wildfires. I believe that's because the article appears in a US paper, so no mention was permitted of neonicotinoid pesticides or glyphosate. Both of these are highly effective decimators of insect life -- but they're highly profitable for Big Ag, so for now, any criticism is not allowed.

Sure a 97% decline since the 1980’s might be due to fires, droughts and rains. But that’s really not very likely.  There have always been fires, droughts and rains.  Something else has shifted since the 1980’s. And that “thing” is human activity, which has increased its willingness to destroy habitat and spray poisons everywhere in pursuit of cheaper food and easier profits.

The loss of insects, which we observe in the loss of the beautiful and iconic Monarch butterfly, is a gigantic warning flag that we desperately need to heed.  If the bottom of our billion-year-old food web disintegrates, you can be certain that the repercussions to humans will be dramatic and terribly difficult to ‘fix.’  In scientific terms, it will be called a “bottom-up trophic cascade”.

In a trophic cascade, the loss of a single layer of the food pyramid crumbles the entire structure.  Carefully-tuned food webs a billion years in the making are suddenly destabilized.  Life cannot adapt quickly enough, and so entire species are quickly lost.  Once enough species die off, the web cannot be rewoven, and life … simply ends.

What exactly would a “trophic cascade” look like in real life?  Oh, perhaps something just like this:

Deadly deficiency at the heart of an environmental mystery

Oct 16, 2018

During spring and summer, busy colonies of a duck called the common eider (Somateria mollissima) and other wild birds are usually seen breeding on the rocky coasts around the Baltic Sea. Thousands of eager new parents vie for the best spots to build nests and catch food for their demanding young broods.

But Lennart Balk, an environmental biochemist at Stockholm University, witnessed a dramatically different scene when he visited Swedish coastal colonies during a 5-year period starting in 2004. Many birds couldn’t fly. Others were completely paralyzed. Birds also weren’t eating and had difficulty breathing. Thousands of birds were suffering and dying from this paralytic disease, says Balk. “We went into the bird colonies, and we were shocked. You could see something was really wrong. It was a scary situation for this time of year,” he says.

Based on his past work documenting a similar crisis in several Baltic Sea fish species, Balk suspected that the birds’ disease was caused by a thiamine (vitamin B1) deficiency. Thiamine is required for critical metabolic processes, such as energy production and proper functioning of the nervous system.

This essential micronutrient is produced mainly by plants, including phytoplankton, bacteria, and fungi; people and animals must acquire it through their food.

“We found that thiamine deficiency is much more widespread and severe than previously thought,” Balk says. Given its scope, he suggests that a pervasive thiamine deficiency could be at least partly responsible for global wildlife population declines. Over a 60-year period up to 2010, for example, worldwide seabird populations declined by approximately 70%, and globally, species are being lost 1,000 times faster than the natural rate of extinction (9, 10). “He has seen a thiamine deficiency in several differ phyla now,” says Fitzsimons of Balk. “One wonders what is going on. It’s a larger issue than we first suspected.”

(Source)

This is beyond disturbing. It should have been on the front pages of every newspaper and TV show across the globe.  We should be discussing it in urgent, worried tones and devoting a huge amount of money to studying and fixing it.  At a minimum, we should stop hauling more tiny fish and krill from the sea in an effort to at least stabilize the food pyramid while we sort things out.

If you recall, we’ve also recently reported on the findings showing that phytoplankton levels are down 50% (these are a prime source for thiamine, by the way). Again, here's a possible “trophic cascade” in progress: 

(Source)

Fewer phytoplankton means less thiamine being produced. That means less thiamine is available to pass up the food chain. Next thing you know, there’s a 70% decline in seabird populations.

This is something I’ve noticed directly and commented n during my annual pilgrimages to the northern Maine coast over the past 30 years, where seagulls used to be extremely common and are now practically gone.  Seagulls!

Next thing you know, some other major food chain will be wiped out and we'll get oceans full of jellyfish instead of actual fish.  Or perhaps some once-benign mold grows unchecked because the former complex food web holding it in balance has collapsed, suddenyl transforming Big Ag's "green revolution" into grayish-brown spore-ridden dust.

To add to the terrifying mix of ecological news has been the sudden and rapid loss of amphibian species all over the world.  A possible source for the culprit has been found, if that’s any consolation; though that discovery does not yet identify a solution to this saddening development.

Ground Zero of Amphibian 'Apocalypse' Finally Found

May 10, 2018

MANY OF THE world's amphibians are staring down an existential threat: an ancient skin-eating fungus that can wipe out entire forests' worth of frogs in a flash.

This ecological super-villain, the chytrid fungus Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis, has driven more than 200 amphibian species to extinction or near-extinction—radically rewiring ecosystems all over Earth.

“This is the worst pathogen in the history of the world, as far as we can tell, in terms of its impacts on biodiversity,” says Mat Fisher, an Imperial College London mycologist who studies the fungus.

Now, a global team of 58 researchers has uncovered the creature's origin story. A groundbreaking study published in Science on Thursday reveals where and when the fungus most likely emerged: the Korean peninsula, sometime during the 1950s.

From there, scientists theorize that human activities inadvertently spread it far and wide—leading to amphibian die-offs across the Americas, Africa, Europe, and Australia.

(Source)

Frogs, toads and salamanders were absolutely critical parts of my childhood and I delighted in their presence. I cannot imagine a world without them. But effectively, that’s what we’ve got now with so many on the endangered species list.

This parade of awful ecological news is both endless and worsening. And there is no real prospect for us to fix things in time to avoid substantial ecological pain.  None.

After all, we can’t even manage our watersheds properly. And those are dead simple by comparison. Water falls from the sky in (Mostly) predictable volume and you then distribute somewhat less than that total each year.  Linear and simple in comparison to trying to unravel the many factors underlying a specie's collapse.

But challenges like this are popping up all over the globe:

Fear And Grieving In Las Vegas: Colorado River Managers Struggle With Water Scarcity

Dec 14th, 2018

On stage in a conference room at Las Vegas's Caesars Palace, Keith Moses said coming to terms with the limits of the Colorado River is like losing a loved one.

"It reminds me of the seven stages of grief," Moses said. "Because I think we've been in denial for a long time."

Moses is vice chairman of the Colorado River Indian Tribes, a group of four tribes near Parker, Arizona. He was speaking at the annual Colorado River Water Users Association meeting.

The denial turned to pain and guilt as it became clear just how big the supply and demand gaps were on the river that delivers water to 40 million people in the southwest.

For the last six months Arizona's water leaders have been experiencing the third stage of grief: anger and bargaining.

Of the seven U.S. states that rely on the Colorado River, Arizona has had the hardest time figuring out how to rein in water use and avoid seeing the river's largest reservoirs — Lakes Mead and Powell — drop to extremely low levels.

Kathryn Sorenson, director of Phoenix's water utility, characterized the process this way: "Interesting. Complicated. Some might say difficult."

One of the loudest voices in the debate has been coming from a small group of farmers in rural Pinal County, Arizona, south of Phoenix.

Under the current rules those farmers could see their Colorado River supplies zeroed out within two years.

The county's biggest grower of cotton and alfalfa, Brian Rhodes, is trying to make sure that doesn't happen. The soil in his fields is powder-like, bursting into tiny brown clouds with each step.

"We're going to have to take large cuts," Rhodes said. "We all understand that."

(Source)

Oh my goodness. If we’re having trouble realizing that wasting precious water from the Colorado River to grow cotton is a bad idea, then there’s just no hope at all that we'll successfully rally to address the loss of ocean phytoplankton. 

That’s about the easiest connection of dots that could ever be made.  As Sam Kinison, the 1980’s comedian might have yelled – IT’S A DESERT!! YOU’RE TRYING TO GROW WATER-INTENSIVE CROPS IN THE FREAKING DESERT!  CAN’T YOU SEE ALL THE SAND AROUND YOU?!? THAT MEANS "DON’T GROW COTTON HERE!!"

A World On The Brink

The bottom line is this: We are destroying the natural world. And that means that we are destroying ourselves. 

I know that the mainstream news has relegated this conversation to the back pages (when they covered it at all) and so it's not “front and center” for most people.  But it should be.

Everything we hold dear is a subset of the ecosphere. If that goes, so does everything else. Nothing else matters in the slightest if we actively destroy the Earth’s carrying capacity.

At the same time, we're in the grips of an extremely dangerous delusion that has placed money, finance and the economy at the top spot on our temple of daily worship.

Any idea of slowing down or stopping economic growth is “bad for business” and dismissed out of hand as “not practical”, "undesirable" or "unwise".  It’s always a bad time to discuss the end of economic growth, apparently. 

But as today's young people are increasingly discovering, if "conducting business" is just a lame rationale for failed stewardship of our lands and oceans, then it’s a broken idea. One not worth preserving in its current form.

The parade of terrible ecological breakdowns provided above is there for all willing to see it. Are you willing?  Each failing ecosystem is screaming at us in urgent, strident tones that we’ve gone too far in our quest for "more".

We might be able to explain away each failure individually. But taken as a whole?  The pattern is clear: We’ve got enemy action at work.  These are not random coincidences.

Nature is warning us loudly that it's past time to change our ways.  That our "endless growth" model is no longer valid. In fact, it's now becoming an existential threat

The collapse is underway. It’s just not being televised (yet).

Davos As Destiny

And don't expect the cavalry to arrive.

Our leadership is absolutely not up to the task. If the Davos conference currently underway in Switzerland is a sign of anything at all, it’s that we’re doomed.

The world has been taken over by bankers and financiers too smitten by their love of money to notice much else or be of any practical service to the world.

By way of illustrative example, here’s the big techno-feel-good idea unveiled on the second day of the conference.  The crowds there loved it:

Yes, folks, this is what the world most desperately needs at this time! /sarc 

While I’m sure drone-delivered books is a heartwarming story, it’s completely diversionary and utterly meaningless in the face of collapsing oceanic and terrestrial food webs.

Sadly, this is exactly the sort of inane distraction most admired by the Davos set in large part because it helps them feel a tiny bit better about their ill-gotten wealth. "Look!  We're supporting good thngs!"  The ugly truth is that big wealth's main pursuit is to distort political processes and rules to assure they get to keep it and even amass more. 

Drones carrying books to Indonesian children provides the same sort of dopamine rush to a Davos attendee as Facebook 'like' gives to a 14-year-old. Temporary, cheap, superficial and ultimately meaningless.

The same is true of their other feel-good theme of the day. “Scientists” have discovered an enzyme that eats plastics:

That’s swell, but you know what would be even better?  Not using the bottles in the first place. Which could be accomplished by providing access to safe, potable water as a basic human right and using re-usable containers.  Of course, that would offer less chances for private wealth accumulation so instead the Davos crowd is fixated on the profitable solution vs. doing the right thing.

In viritually every instance, the Davos crowd wants to preserve industry and our consumer culture as it is, using technology and gimmicks in attempt to remedy the ills that result.  There’s money to be made on both ends of that story.

The only thing that approach lacks is a future. Because it’s not-so-subtly based on continued "growth". Infinite exponential growth. The exact same growth that is killing ancient trees, sea birds, insects, amphibians, and phytoplankton.

Who wants more of that? Insane people.

In other words, don’t hold out any hope that the Davos set representing the so-called “elite” from every prominent nation on earth are going to somehow bravely offer up real insights on our massive predicaments and solutions to our looming problems. They're too consumed with their own egos and busy preening for prominence to notice the danger or care.

As they pointlessly fritter away another expensive gathering, the ecological world is unraveling all around them. The oceans are becoming a barren wasteland.  The ancient trees are dying.  Heatwaves are melting tar and killing life.  The web of life is snapping strand by strand and nobody can predict what happens next.

In other words, if you held out any hope that “they” would somehow rally to the cause you’d best set that completely aside. It's no wonder social anger against tone-deaf and plundering elites is breaking out right now.

From here, there are only two likely paths: 

(1) We humans simply cannot self-organize to address these plights and carry on until the bitter end, when something catastrophic happens that collapses our natural support systems. 

(2) We see the light, gather our courage, and do what needs to be done.  Consumption is widely and steeply curtailed, fossil fuel use is severely restrained, and living standards as measured by the amount of stuff flowing through our daily lives are dropped to sustainable levels.

Either path means enormous changes are coming, probably for you and definitely for your children and grandchildren. 

In Part 2: Facing Reality we dive into what developments to expect as our systems continue further along their trophic cascade. Which markers and milestones should we monitor most closely to know when the next breaking point is upon us? 

To reiterate: Massive change is now inevitable and in progress.

Collapse has already begun.

Click here to read Part 2 of this report (free executive summary, enrollment required for full access).

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255 Comments

phildenn's picture
phildenn
Status: Bronze Member (Offline)
Joined: Sep 2 2009
Posts: 39
Life on Earth

Great post, Chris. I can feel the sincerity in the sadness and desperation of your tone. Perhaps this may sound silly, but when I get broken-hearted about the environmental E, I remind myself that we may sow the seeds of our demise (with the species that share our place), but on geological time the Earth and her life-giving story should be fine, right? Might it be the most important thing we can do, simply to cherish the time we have, to bask and work and dream and build and laugh and love...

It seems unlikely humanity will organize and take path 2, but I hope some of us can at least truly appreciate the opportunity along the way...

pinecarr's picture
pinecarr
Status: Diamond Member (Offline)
Joined: Apr 13 2008
Posts: 2266
Giving the Environmental "E" its Due

Chris, I think this is one of the most powerful posts you've ever written.  The Economic "E" doesn't hold a candle to the Environmental "E", and it is (painfully) refreshing to hear your clarion call on its behalf, bringing long overdue attention to the many indicators that we are seriously screwing over life on earth. 

People need to hear this, they need someone to throw cold water on their faces and tell them to WAKE UP!!!  Thank you for sounding the call.

Sharsta's picture
Sharsta
Status: Bronze Member (Offline)
Joined: Aug 12 2009
Posts: 46
Heat Wave in Australia

I have just come in from watering my garden (as I missed doing it yesterday when it was hot also). The time is 4.08pm (local time) and the weather station on the back concrete reads 42.4C (108F).

It has been varing degrees of hot to bloody disgusting for over a month.

pgp's picture
pgp
Status: Silver Member (Offline)
Joined: Mar 2 2014
Posts: 225
Go forth and prosper.

The elephant in the room jumps, the ground shifts but still no-one takes notice.  The human race refuses to look at itself with any kind of humility even in the face of self-destruction.  We blame the politicians, their lack of action and lament the death of our environment as if  we as law-abiding, righteous individuals had nothing to do with the problem.

If you wanted to save a bunch of trees, reduce toxic outpourings and conserve water what better way than to reduce human demand, specifically by putting limits on population numbers. 

People bitch about meat eaters and how cattle are a major cause of climate change but no-one ever puts into numbers the environmental cost of supporting a two or three child family.  I'm pretty sure the  spawn of our car-driving, energy gluttonous plastic society pose a greater threat to the environment than a family of grass eating quadrupeds.

Still after a century of talking about population and pollution nothing has changed.  No-one wants to give up the culture, beliefs and traditions that got us here. The "go forth and prosper" mindset was always an arrogant delusion born from an assumption of self-importance. 

Political society was born from an amalgamation of tribes overpopulating areas of limited resource.  Now the planet will die because the species refuses to equate resource depletion with flagrant population growth.

Our extinction seems like a fitting end.

Mark_BC's picture
Mark_BC
Status: Platinum Member (Offline)
Joined: Apr 30 2010
Posts: 533
The masses are torn. On one

The masses are torn. On one hand, most people do not want the environment that supports us to be destroyed. On the other, to make the changes required to save it (if it isn't already too late) would eliminate probably half the jobs out there and destroy the financial system and everyone's savings, THE WAY THE ECONOMY / SYSTEM IS CURRENTLY STRUCTURED. I think we know that when faced with the choice of immediate poverty versus a longer term, more widespread and nebulous threat, individuals will always defer to the latter.

The alternative, changing the system so that half the population DOESN'T lose their job as a result of society becoming sustainable, is not something many people understand how to do, no doubt in part due to the elites directly and indirectly influencing the educational system and what we are taught; in addition to the censored media stories we are told / not told, as Chris mentions.

In short, this will not end well. It's so sad, beause we had/have the knowledge and technology to live sustainably, decades ago, if we had used it that way. But our leaders are incompetent and they blew it. The masses allowed them to.

SagerXX's picture
SagerXX
Status: Diamond Member (Offline)
Joined: Feb 11 2009
Posts: 2266
While this environment burns....

...this is where TPTB's focus is now (as I've been suspecting for a while now):  control of resources (esp oil, to be exploited at any environmental cost, of course) closer to home and potentially less bothersome to extract than in the Middle East...

https://www.zerohedge.com/news/2019-01-24/american-empire-pivots-toward-...

 

ezlxq1949's picture
ezlxq1949
Status: Gold Member (Offline)
Joined: Apr 29 2009
Posts: 310
Wilful blindness

There's been a fair amount of publicity of and media hand-wringing over the fish kills in the Murray River system. My wife and I were listening to a ABC news radio broadcast where they interviewed the Deputy Prime Minister about what had happened and why. (I gather the PM was out of the country attending to BAU.)

He acknowledged the fish deaths and expressed sorrow and isn't it too bad and there's a lot of complicated causes and all that. He also said a number of times that in Australia the rain ALWAYS returns, and when it does we will be complaining and wondering what to do with all the water. This is Australia, the land of droughts and flooding rains. The rain ALWAYS returns, he repeated. Then we can get back to growing the economy. Like approving that mega coal mine in Queensland that MANY of the people adamantly oppose.

In other words, as far as he's concerned, climate change is not an issue. Not at all. Obviously this is official Australian federal government policy.

And we've never had a fish kill like this that anyone can remember. This is new. So, Mr Deputy PM, what has changed? Nothing? And you reckon the rain will return? Isn't this a species of cargo cult thinking? What if it doesn't?

I know some pleasant people who are genuinely convinced that the earth is flat. Really. Now I know at least one more.

nigel's picture
nigel
Status: Silver Member (Offline)
Joined: Apr 15 2009
Posts: 149
New South Wales

The interesting thing about New South Wales (NSW) is that it's one of the grain belts for Australia, and more grain is produced than is needed. This typically means that it's traded, from memory it accounts for about 2% of grain traded world wide. So the drought in NSW has geopolitical implications, but only if there is another grain failure elsewhere. Now you may think 2% of grain is tiny, but in terms of the amount of people it feeds in other countries it's massive, we are talking 10's to 100's of millions of people not being able to get their staples. So pay attention over the summer in the middle east, or India or Africa, and if there are crop faulures there you may face another arab spring situation.

Russia, and the US both produce massive amounts of grain, but they don't trade as much as you would think, Russia trades less than Australia, and i'll note they had a grain crop failure the same year as the last Arab spring.

I remember as a child that each week my job was to go out and clean the car window of bird poop, there was always something on the window. I got real excited about 3 months ago because I found some on my car window. It's the only time I can recall having it happen within the last 10 years. No bugs, no birds, and an overheating planet.

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Luke Moffat
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Yellow Vest Wounds

Wounds suffered by Yellow Vest protestors largely as a result of rubber bullets ("flashballs") fired by police: http://lemurjaune.fr/ (warning: photos are graphic)

Taken from this article here: https://www.nakedcapitalism.com/2019/01/gilets-jaunes-attack.html

I'm still waiting for these images to be shown on MSM - any idea how long I'll have to wait? Bidding starts at 'forever' and extends to 'infinity and beyond'.

Edit: I should have posted this in daily digest. Admin, feel free to move.

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Chris's posts
pinecarr wrote:

Chris, I think this is one of the most powerful posts you've ever written.  The Economic "E" doesn't hold a candle to the Environmental "E", and it is (painfully) refreshing to hear your clarion call on its behalf, bringing long overdue attention to the many indicators that we are seriously screwing over life on earth. 

People need to hear this, they need someone to throw cold water on their faces and tell them to WAKE UP!!!  Thank you for sounding the call.

 

I agree with Pinecarr.  This is one of Chris's best, and another of them was the end of year post, where he warned us oldies that sometime soon a youngster is going to ask us two questions:  when did you realise and what did you do about it?  That, for me, was a call to arms. 

But I hear, too, the despair in Chris's articles, and in my own (nobody reads mine, unfortunately).  We all in here know it is already too late.  While TPTB chase Russian moonbeams  and dollars in their trillions in the US, Brexit, Catalan independence and Italian budget problems in the EU, they have no time for anything other than the latest employment figures, exchange rates and quarterly reports.

The environment needs a leader.

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a week of profound reads

Amazing - thanks, Chris.

I don't know what it is about this week that profound reads on this topic matter keep coming up.  Here is that one kept me glued to my screen for a while the other day when I should have been working - a stunning piece of work IMO, concerning climate change and collapse.

https://www.lifeworth.com/deepadaptation.pdf

And Nafeez Ahmed, who has been on PP:

https://medium.com/insurge-intelligence/how-collective-intelligence-can-change-your-world-right-now-fcfab215251f

Both indispensible for those wondering what to do with this most terrible knowledge.....

 

 

 

 

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What’s Coming

Philden was right about this being one of your best posts.  However, it was, by far, one of your most disturbing posts.

Sadly, from my seat on the bench, I don’t see people gearing up to work on a solution.  What I see is people working themselves up into a war frenzy.  I think the “forever war”, we’ve been perpetuating is going to become a world war.

That’ll solve everything!

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any real solution will have to be imposed

It's an extraordinarily unpleasant thought, but the first world's political systems have failed completely to address the most critical problem of the past 500 years.  Democracy, or what has passed for democracy in our advertising/propaganda-filled world, has failed completely -- and that is not due to any particular administration's corruption, nor it it due to any one politician's scientific ignorance.  It is due to the baked-in greed within humans, and the ease with which that greed is exploited by the worst of us.  

The idea that humans, under self-governance, would automatically implement necessary solutions to global problems turns out to be a mirage. 

What would address the problem appropriately?  There would need to be a heavy military power able and willing to impose rationing across the developed world, enforced by immediate death for violators.  Such a power could announce its arrival by bombing every super-yacht and private jet out of existence, with or without their owners on board.  It is very difficult to imagine that such a power could remain uncorrupted -- but if we are honest with ourselves, the civilian alternatives have all been tried, and have all completely failed.    

I'm over 60, and have had little hope for the past 38 years, ever since the US population elected an avuncular TV character to lead the nation, largely because a helicopter failed.  We've done remarkable things since then to enlarge the set of people deemed to matter, but have done nothing (ignoring rounding error) to save us from ourselves.  We stepped off the cliff long ago, blinking like Road Runner's cartoon coyote.  We're already halfway down on our way to meet the ground, and no doubt politicians will take action to ensure the 0.01% continue to have the best air-conditioning at their compounds after the splat.   

For those who think a resort to military-imposed violence sounds unappealing, I'd suggest it is really long past time to admit to the far-greater violence that has already been committed in our names, to ensure that a few of the worst of us can play with super-yachts and private jets.

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Great post

Chris,

Thank you for the great post. I appreciate your passion for people and the environment.

In 2008, I was much less optimistic than I am today. Not because we've done much to alleviate the environmental degradation, but because I've seen first hand what's possible.

In 2009, I purchased a six acre, south facing hillside that had been farmed for decades. No butterflies. No frogs. No snakes. Very degraded.

Over the next nine years, I put in 2200 linear feet of swales to stop the water and nutrients from running off the hill. I planted 2000+ trees to take advantage of the captured moisture and nutrient. I dug four ponds. My plan was to provide for the needs of the flora and fauna as well as my family's needs. To do this I had to rehydrate and reforest the land, and build ecological diversity.

Early on the process, my property attracted the ire of neighbors and passerbyers in the township. People complained that my property was "all weeds". I rarely mowed and only did so as part of a strategy. For example, if I wanted to discourage a particular plant over another, I might mow before the plant goes to seed, or I might let it seed if I wanted more of a particular plant. Many times, I would hand cut certain species as they dried in the field and spread the seeds by hand to other areas where I thought they might thrive. The trees I planted were very small, and to the passerby who's used to maincured monoculture lanws it did look weedy. Of course, many of these so called weeds provides tons of benefits, far more than grass.

The police cited me for breaking the weed ordinance. The penalties are stiff with daily fines and jail time if you don't comply. The problem was I couldn't comply without destroying all my hardwork. The design was very natural and not conducive to mowing. I fought it, and the complaints and police threats went on for about two years. Finally, I was granted a hearing to argue my case.

At the hearing, the township solicitor said it was the FIRST time anyone had challenged the property maintenance code. The police officer had pictures of my property and questioned me about plants in his pictures, citing them as weeds. Thankfully, I could name the plants and their uses. One of the plants he complained about was a grape vine. Anyway, to make a long story short, the board decided to classify my entire property as a garden, and therefore exempt from the grass and weeds ordinance. Had I lost this hearing, I would've been totally SOL.

Now, years later, the passerbyers can't see what's going on. The trees and the bamboo are too tall. Now, we have tons of insects and butterflies. When I'm walking the property, in certain spots, I have to flick my corn knife at the air in front of me because there are so many spider webs. Monarch butterflies are everywhere, not an exaggeration. I think they come for the milkweed, which I've let grow and multiply. When I walk by the ponds, I hear and see the frogs jumping in the water. I see snakes on a regular basis. Fox. Ducks. Skunks. Possum. Too many groundhogs. Hawks. Eagles. So many birds. Since I rarely mow, the birds can access the dried seeds hanging on the stalks over the winter. I watch them balancing on the stalks and eating the seeds.

Imagine what humanity could accomplish if we started building swales and ponds and planting trees and growing some of our own food. If we plant enough trees, it actually increases rainfall!

Of course, I have no idea how you influence others to do these things. I did what I did knowing it is inconsequential in the big picture. But I think about what the world would look like if people stopped trying to control and dominate nature. Just stopping with all the mowing and spraying would be a huge step in the right direction.

Humanity could be a powerful regenerative force. We just need to get going in the right direction.

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1974 - 75

My personal journey got kick-started in the fall of '74 when I began college and met my wife-to-be.  We had read some of the same books in high school and had a shared interest in ecology and overpopulation (Boy, we must've been a couple of weird dweebs! Back in the early '70's who read that kind of stuff on their own in high school?!).  It was Silent Spring, The Population Bomb, and The Limits to Growth.  Additionally, my father who lived 1,500 miles away warned me in August of '71 in one of many letters that Nixon "closing the gold window" would mean the collapse of the economy and civilization, so I started thinking about prepping to survive. Together with some friends we met in our first year in college, my then-fiance and I started S.A.F.E. - Student Action For the Environment at our little college in the fall of '75, through which we tried to educate ourselves and awaken others to what people were doing to the environment. We threw our little teaspoon of water on the raging fire. wink

We settled in for the long haul and over the years adjusted our values and behavior accordingly. In graduate school in Louisville, KY, we had no A/C and kept our winter thermostat set at its lowest setting: 54 degrees F, unless we had a guest coming over and then we cranked it up to 70 degrees just for the visit.  We grew a little garden in a brick-strewn lot next door.  That's where I learned that six free brussel sprout plants were waaaay too much for two people who don't like brussel sprouts that much. We've had two children and passed on to them our love for nature and concern for the environment and energy conservation, even though we've always lived in dense urban centers. We only have two grandchildren and that looks like it's going to be it.  We've always been pretty well insulated from the mind-control that TPTB wield through teevee.  We didn't have a teevee for our first five years of marriage and only got a 13" B/W when it was given to us.  We cut the cord again for good about five years ago, and quit all our newspaper and news magazine subscriptions about 15 years ago.

Anyway, despite our tiny efforts, the world has continued to march inexorably toward the disaster we saw coming in '74 at the latest.  We have hopes, but not that society will wake up and make the necessary changes.  Our hopes are in family and small group survival, and rebuilding a better world (though I have to concede that even the best rebuilding will be fatally flawed or spoiled in the long term).  The Christian communities that survived and thrived in the Dark Ages are our inspiration.  We are determined to do the right things, not because they will succeed in saving civilization and nature or even ourselves, but because they are the right things.

The big human die-off we're approaching will self-correct many of our excesses, of that I can be sure. Massively fewer people will reduce human consumption and destruction of the environment (that is, after the excess radiation has faded away).

In the meantime, we're like most of us here at PP: seeking to enjoy life, love, family, nature, fresh water, and food as much as we can for as long as it lasts. And we continue to prepare to survive to the other side of the event horizon with our lives and values intact. But we're not Hippie Flower Children: we are battle-hardened urban warriors and as prepared to cope with The Ugliness that's coming as we can be at our age.  More than the coming violence and suffering, we fear the temptations that will come to not live according to our beliefs and values.  

This weekend we are still trying to get our house sold so we can get out of the Big City when we retire in May. We've got three showings over the weekend and an open house.  Got to go attend to those mundane details. Life goes on.  We're looking forward to starting over even more sustainably in New Hampshire and seeing our first moose, before they're all gone. 

"Happy Hunger Games. And may the odds be ever in your favor."

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Collapse is already here

As a wildlife photographer, there is nothing I love more than the natural world! My one gift is that I believe we are all Spiritual Beings at the core and personally I could never be afraid of anything as small as death. I believe that death is just a continuance of Life although in a different form. Many more cultures than not believe that death is a celebration and a new beginning. I wish this gift upon others. After all, what could be more abhorrent than a world controlled by Central bankers!!

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Take a number, Chris!

Jeremiah, the weaping prophet

And. we know what happened to him!

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LesPhelps
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My Political View

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Insurge Intelligence -- Masturbation at its Finest

After skimming Dr. Nafeez Ahmed's piece cited above -- reading would have been too painful --  I see that the solution to all our problems must be to expand the basic religious/philosophical concept "know thyself" into long-winded big-worded mountains of bullshit, never once mentioning explicit material sacrifice.  Think-tank work at its best; not just useless, but impressively useless.

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maybe useless but true

Perhaps useless - but also at the same time true, which is part of the predicament itself.

I used to be a Zen student at a monastery, and I would hear something similar, that needed change has to start with inner work that can filter out into the world - our insititutions and cultural narratives.  I would hear this and think, yes, but fat chance any more than a very few are going to be willing to do the inner work to begin with.  I still think that's true, and that many of the insights in Ahmed's article are true, but in a practical sense useless.  That's the tragedy of our culture, that our world view and way of life is so mal-adaptive to human and planetary well-being that impossible solutions such as what Ahmed are the few things that make sense. 

We need cultural norms, narratives, and beliefs that restrain our worst collective tendencies.  Our culture has none of these, the result is what we see unfolding before us.

 

 

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Greetings from Brexit land

Great post Chris.  Greetings from the UK, land of Brexit.  A great frustration for me is that the political theatricals of Brexit are dominating the airwaves and political and social discourse here, and diverting everyone's attention from much more serious problems like the ones you've described.  Species extinction, resource depletion and climate change are going to have far more impact than Brexit in the long term but nobody is talking about them.  Keep up your good work.

https://postpeakmedicine.com/

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Rector
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The clock was always programmed to run to 0:00

"And what will be the sign of Your coming, and of the end of the age?” . .

And you will hear of wars and rumors of wars. See that you are not troubled; for all these things must come to pass, but the end is not yet. For nation will rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom. And there will be famines, pestilences, and earthquakes in various places. All these are the beginning of sorrows. Then they will deliver you up to tribulation and kill you, and you will be hated by all nations for My name’s sake. And then many will be offended, will betray one another, and will hate one another. Then many false prophets will rise up and deceive many. And because lawlessness will abound, the love of many will grow cold. . .Immediately after the tribulation of those days the sun will be darkened, and the moon will not give its light; the stars will fall from heaven, and the powers of the heavens will be shaken. Then the sign of the Son of Man will appear in heaven, and then all the tribes of the earth will mourn, and they will see the Son of Man coming on the clouds of heaven with power and great glory. And He will send His angels with a great sound of a trumpet, and they will gather together His elect from the four winds, from one end of heaven to the other."

Believe it.

Rector

 

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cultural norms, narrative, and beliefs

I actually agree with both you and the wordy doctor, though I find it hard to accept common sense when it is turned into a dissertation.  But while it's nice to be nice to the nice, what the world actually needs is for some military to start shooting the wealthiest people.  That, and nothing else, is going to cure the effects of capitalist countries' worship of mammon.

Will any military actually do this?  Or are they all run by climate-change deniers?  I don't know.  But I no longer have the slightest illusion that our political system is up to the task which so many seem to think it will take on.  Instead, we will see good pols and bad pols rise to the top and have the public turn on them, because they have proven unable to alter a system that is built off of our animal nature greed.

If any pol ever proved a true threat to the wealthiest 0.01%, they'd be dead in a flash.  That's why what little hope I have rests on people with large armaments doing something noble, even though I think they are all probably conservative, while I would once have considered myself liberal.

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My "Political" View (whatever that means)

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thc0655
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You’ve definitely gone off the deep end mjtrac

Though I do have to admit your plan appeals to me on one level. You know that whole “We had to destroy the village to save it,” kind of way. Your plan does give me pause however in another way because others have tried using murder on an industrial scale to establish a better world. But they never established a better world. They only killed millions. I’ll sign on to your campaign under one condition: I’m put in charge of deciding who dies and who lives. 

“Every normal man must be tempted, at times, to spit on his hands, hoist the black flag, and begin slitting throats.” 

― H.L. Mencken, Prejudices: First Series

I am definitely Mencken’s normal man. The insanity of the world is just too much to bear sometimes. However my conclusion is I’ll be one who will stand in the way of any who would try to bring a better world through the tyrannical control of those who can be controlled and death to those who can’t. Not on my watch.

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Time2help
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War never decides who's right...

...it only decides who's left.

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Re: Cultural Norms, Narrative, And Beliefs

While it may be tempting to think that the military might do something useful in an overthrow, that's just not going to be the case.

The military, once done with their purge, would then be subject to all of the Rules for Rulers

Soon enough you are right back to where you started.

We need to change things more fundamentally than simply upending the current apple cart.  We need to shift our core narratives in news ways.

If we're still addicted to growth (courtesy of our money system) then it doesn't matter who's in charge.  We'll get the same system in the end.

It's either "evolve or die" with the evolution being the ability to live sustainably within our means without going through an ecosphere destroying overshoot moment.

That evolution will depend on our shifting of core beliefs and finding a way to tame our egos which are always in a perpetual state of wanting.  The ego always wants more.  It the ego has one, it wants two.  If it has two it wants ten.  If it has a million it wants a billion.  And it's never satisfied by getting what it "wanted" which means that wasn't what it actually really wanted in the first place.

What does the ego want?  To want.

The ego wants wanting and, boy, does it get it!

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Sharsta
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Davos 2019

Hi Chris,

While I fully agree that Davos 2019 is too little, too late, there were a few talks and people who were not as totally tone deaf as the rest -

# Sir Richard Attenborough (from minute 21 for the first link)

https://www.weforum.org/events/world-economic-forum-annual-meeting/sessions/the-25th-anniversary-of-the-crystal-awards

https://www.weforum.org/events/world-economic-forum-annual-meeting/sessions/an-insight-an-idea-with-david-attenborough

# Jacinda Ardern - the Prime Minister of New Zealand

https://www.weforum.org/events/world-economic-forum-annual-meeting/sessions/our-planet

# Mark Rutte - the Prime Minister of the Netherlands

https://www.weforum.org/events/world-economic-forum-annual-meeting/sessions/creating-new-coalitions-against-climate-change

# My absolute cheering favourite though is Greta Thunberg

https://www.weforum.org/agenda/2019/01/our-house-is-on-fire-16-year-old-greta-thunberg-speaks-truth-to-power/

She is the person who has inspired/is inspiring kids around the world to 'School Strike for Climate' and made it to Davos via a 32 hour train trip. She does NOT mince words and says things that these Davos people need to hear.

For some background - here is her TedxStockholm talk from November 2018

https://www.ted.com/talks/greta_thunberg_school_strike_for_climate_save_the_world_by_changing_the_rules?language=en

 

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Eternal life

Unfortunately man is on a path of self destruction where they wrote theiur own epitath:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Georgia_Guidestones

Man seems to think he can write his own story but his~story(history) has already been written:

Revelation 11:18 And the nations were wroth, and thy wrath came, and the time of the dead to be judged, and the time to give their reward to thy servants the prophets, and to the saints, and to them that fear thy name, the small and the great; and to destroy them that destroy the earth.

The next decade will bring our Father climactic end:

https://sumofthyword.com/2016/10/04/the-rapture-of-the-church-is-after-the-tribulation/

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Heating earth

I often agree with much of what you say. However: While you may well be right in your favorite narrative, although I am tempted to think you may be presumptuously early in an eager sort of way, I nevertheless wouldn't be inclined to argue the issue with you. But your plot breaks down to the extent that it relies for urgency on a tall-tale, utterly unfounded in science, manufactured out of new whole-cloth for ulterior purposes, and force-fed to the public by a compliant, subservient,and very compromised media for now more than 30 years. Of course, I mean the global warming /climate change story which you seem to accept at face value. To me it's always strange when people recognize the flaws in establishment media presentations and narratives in certain areas but then accept holus- bolus uncritically and without evidence something like the anthropogenic global warming assertion. Originally, I was inclined to believe the story as it was supposedly sourced in science, but as time went by and the mythical evidence was never presented and the stories began to take on a flavour of propaganda I became suspicious and decided to investigate. I had no dog in the fight but wanted facts.To that end, I can say that I have read over 50 books, hundreds of articles, some papers, and thousands of blog posts and discovered that there is not any real science to support the notion of man-made global warming. The extent of the so-called evidence resides solely in climate models created by activist parties and that's all there is. That's not scientific evidence. The activists program the models using their preferred assumptions to get the results they want. That is an invalid circular process and not science but the whole thing is based on these models. When it comes to climate dynamics there are just too many unknowns and even for the things that are known it is impossible to know how to weight them properly for any climate model to have a valid outcome. Beyond this, there are reasons why CO2 does not and cannot cause the earth's temperature to rise which I won't get into here, In fact, to call it a pollutant is ridiculous. It is the molecule of life as the existence of all life on earth depends on it. Plants and crops require it to grow and without plants there would be no animals or humans. In fact, plants evolved when CO2 was many times higher than now. When Co2 was below 300 parts per million we were near starvation levels for plants as for eons it was continually washing out of the atmosphere and being sequestered to the point of danger. Not only is it not harmful but more would be beneficial. As an aside, several competent experts have demonstrated that the human contribution of CO2 from burning fossil fuels is tiny and overwhelmed by natural sources during times of modest rise such as now and in the constant overturning cycle can not possibly be responsible for the rise in recent decades. The math does't work. But this doesn't matter anyway as more is better and not harmful.

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Sharsta
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Greta Thunberg

Here's a link for another talk she gave -

https://www.commondreams.org/news/2019/01/25/right-their-faces-16-year-old-greta-thunberg-tells-davos-elite-climate-crisis-their

"It takes deep courage to go to Davos and tell the masters-of-the-universe *to their faces* that they knowingly torched the planet in order to get filthy rich."
—Naomi Klein

 

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old guy
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Well, my previous post didn't

Well, my previous post didn't format well as I pasted it in from notepad.

Just to make reference to your Australia heatwave example, It is nothing unusual. It was in fact hotter during a heatwave in the 1890's. But it is an example of what the co-opted mainstream media does. I remember when a few years ago they played-up another heatwave in Australia where the temp was a couple of degrees above normal while not mentioning an area about twice the size of Australia in central Asia with severe cold 10 degrees below normal that was happenning at the same time.

In fact the whole narrative of an over-heating earth is bunkum. Our current inter-glacial period is about 11,800 years long. We have been in a stairstep slide down to the next glacial period ever since the Holocene optimum some 8,000 years ago when temps were some 3 degrees celsius warmer than now. We are currently below the peaks from 5,000 years ago as well as the Roman peiod and the medieval warm priod when Vikings farmed in Greenland.

The current minor blip up is simply a rebound from the "little ice age" which was the coldest dip in the entire current interglacial. WE are still colder than 95% of the current interglacial.

 

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old guy
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Ulterior motives

The ulterior motives for the narrative:

“Isn’t the only hope for the planet that the industrialized civilizations collapse?
Isn’t it our responsibility to bring that about?”
Maurice Strong, 1992, Under Secretary General of the UN
Maurice Strong chose the UN specifically the World Meteorological Organization (WMO) to control bureaucracies within every national government and away from legislative oversight. Those bureaucracies directed research funding to one side of the debate and appointed people to the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC). The research was limited by defining climate change as only human-caused changes, which predetermined the outcome. The political objective became enshrined through the United Nations Environment Program (UNEP), particularly Agenda 21, introduced at the 1992 Rio Conference organized and chaired by Strong.

Basing Agenda 21 on climate and the environment gave them the moral high ground, which they used to control and centralize power. Vaclav Klaus identified this in his book “Blue Planet in Green Shackles”
And:

At a news conference last week in Brussels, Christiana Figueres, executive secretary of U.N.’s Framework Convention on Climate Change, admitted that the goal of environmental activists is not to save the world from ecological calamity but to destroy capitalism.

“This is the first time in the history of mankind that we are setting ourselves the task of intentionally, within a defined period of time, to change the economic development model that has been reigning for at least 150 years, since the Industrial Revolution,” she said.

Referring to a new international treaty environmentalists hope will be adopted at the Paris climate change conference later this year, she added: “This is probably the most difficult task we have ever given ourselves, which is to intentionally transform the economic development model for the first time in human history.”
And:

Ottmar Edenhofer,
co-chair of the IPCC’s
Working Group III,
explained in
precise German:
“we are in fact
redistributing
the world’s wealth
by climate policy
… one must
free oneself
of the delusion
that climate policy
is [about]
environmental
policy.”

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What are we to do about it?

Or what can I do about it? Me, poor little me against such a powerful machine that seems to inexorably walk (run) toward its self-destruction. I believe the answer is partly in this very interesting piece that I just stumbled upon. It ties in very well with Chris's ''Be that change you want to see in  the wolrd'' theme. What if change in the ''out there'' did indeed start with change ''in here and now''. What if the outside was merely a reflection of the inside. It just might be so, it just might be so. And it fills me with great hope and joy. There is a way out. However, make no mistake, it might also be our biggest challenge and task yet. But  it is one  we can and will supercede. A must read if you ask my humble opinion. https://medium.com/insurge-intelligence/how-collective-intelligence-can-change-your-world-right-now-fcfab215251f

 

On the same theme of change within oneself before change outside oneself can manifest, this video.

 

What say you?

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louisdoran
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CO2 and climate change

I'd be very interested in finding out more about your CO2 cannot possibly cause climate change which you did not expose further.

 

Thank you.

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LesPhelps
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Make America Great Again

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Poet
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I Fear It Is Already Too Late
The year 2017 was a peak year for global carbon emissions. Except 2018 surpassed it.
 
We have some 7.7 billion people on this planet, and there are no signs of slowing down. Even if we did, there is already enough carbon in the atmosphere to keep it going, enough carbon dissolved in sea water to acidify and damage phytoplankton shell growth. Tropical forests are no longer net absorbers of carbon, they are now net emitters. Warming soils cannot hold as much carbon, so they are releasing it. Frozen methane in shallow Arctic seabeds and frozen carbon and methane in permafrost - they’re already seeping and ready to massively outgas.
 
Over on Facebook, some of us are in a community called the Near Term Human Extinction Support Group. Applicants must answer all three questions to be considered.
 
https://www.facebook.com/groups/NTHESupportGroup/
 
For parents of small children, look for a separate group: Whistling In The Dark
 
Poet
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old guy
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The "greenhouse effect" is

The "greenhouse effect" is inappropriate to begin with as a greenhouse has a solid roof that prevents heat from escaping via convection. The earth's atmosphere is open and so heat is not "trapped" but constantly convected upwards and away. Co2 makes up only .04% of the atmosphere. So the claim  that an increase of one molecule in 10,000 from 3 molecules to 4 molecules in an open convective atmosphere can trap heat and has caused the 0.6C degree rise over the last 50 years is preposterous.

When sunlight hits the earth the energy is converted to heat and radiated upwards in the longwave infrared wavelength bands. About 17% radiates out unobstructed. The rest is captured by mostly water vapour and Co2. But because of the structure of the molecules and the way they can bend or vibrate, Co2 can only capture the energy from a very narrow part of the total range of infrared wavelengths. This is the energy radiated from about -75 to -85 degrees centigrade which is not very much energy at all.

Now, there is a limited amount of energy in this bandwidth available and CO2 at current levels already absorbs most or all of it. In fact,Co2 at 50ppm already absorbs most of it nevermind the current 400ppm.

But here is the kicker! Water vapour absorbs across all of the wavelenths and overlaps the absorption band of CO2. And there is on average 50 times the amount of water vapour in the air. Water vapour alone has the capacity to absorb all of the infrared radiation. CO2 makes no difference. If you reduced it to zero, water vapour would absorb all of the radiation in the CO2 band, and whatever CO2 absorbs at whatever level in the atmosphere is simply stolen from water vapour. Cut it in half or double it, it makes no difference.

And remember, there is a finite amount of energy in the wavelength that CO2 can absorb and it is all already being absorbed. Increasing CO2 can make no difference.

 

 

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the ego is striving for infinity/immortality/security

How about this perspective Chris.

 

the ego is in a constant state of want because it is striving to achieve infinity or immortality if you like. It is terrifified of dissapearing into nothingness.  Of course, striving for infinity (security of the ego) by accumulating material stuff infinitely on a finite planet is a lost cause and can only lead to collapse. Which we are apparently in the process of accomplishing. How to conquer the beast then? Well, if we inately have as human beings a longing for infinity/eternity whether because it is a flaw of the ego or better yet because it is really a longing to remember our true Selves, what we truly are, children of the whole, of the universe, of God, of infinity, take the word that best suits your beliefs, , that we are mistakenly trying to achieve through material accumulation (which we already agreed is a lost cause, the ego will never be content no matter how much you have ). Then, what if we could re-route our egos' desire for infinity (security) and feed the beast something that costs nothing to produce (or next to nothing), that multiplies when shared (unlike material stuff) and that is infinite. And therefore feed the beast until its had its fill. What am I talking ? Well knowlegde of course. La connaissance in french.  A theme well developped by frenchman and Stanford graduate Idris Aberkan. ( I don't know if is work is available in English however, it is to be looked into).

And through knowledge's refinement we will achieve wisdom. If one is infinite, so is the other. And from wisdom we will achieve LOVE. Yes I know, it sounds all new agy and cuddly (and thus not serious, right?) Because wisdom can only lead to LOVE. (Well yes. When you truly know, something, someone, you are so fascinated by the complexity and beauty of such something or someone that you can only admire/love it). LOVE that costs nothing to produce, has no impact on the planet, (and may indeed be the only thing capable of saving it) enriches the one who gives it and the one who receives it, etc and is indeed what the ego is hungry for. Because make no mistake, when somebody feels loved, truly loved and accepted and cherished for what he/she is for no other reason than he/she is, then that person will have no more need to accumulate stuff and in the process of so doing destroy the planet. Because the void that the most materalistic person is truly trying to fill is one of love you see. Love me, love me they are screeming with their every purchase, conquest, election won, etc. I have a billion dollars yet I feel not loved, admired, perhaps two billion will do it and on and on. And if we think about it, totally sincerely with ourselves, we will acknowledge that we are no different in that regard from the worst sociopathic billionaire out there. Perhaps in depth but not on the true nature of our quest (or our ego's quest). We are all somewhere along the spectrum of Fear----------Love.  That is how we conquer the beast.  Knowledge which leads to wisdom which leads to LOVE.

 

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references

Thank you old guy. I am no atmospheric science expert, so I would have to admit that on the face of it, your arguments seem logical. Have any references however for those claims. And I'd be curious to here what the other side would have to say on your specific arguments. If anybody out there is an expert on this very topic and feels like jumping in, I'm all ears.

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oops

that would be hear, not here in the previous post.cheeky

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to louisdoran

One of the methods the warmists use is to repeat their mantra over and over again ad infintum. It's a propaganda method. They continually make references to "science" but never actually show it because it doesn't really exist. Then they continally repeat the "97% of scientists agree" theme which has also just been made up and used as a device. You've never seen their science because they don't have it to present. They have theories and speculations which have never been demonstrated to be true and use these speculations to program their models and then present these models as proof.

They created the United Nations IPCC and ensconsed themselves in it so as to be able to present themselves as the qualified authorities on the subject. The scientists who had been working in the area of climate and atmospheric physics and who disagreed with the output of the IPCC were excluded and then defamed and called kooks and deniers even though they were the real experts in the area. Soon Scientists and others who might disagree learned to keep their mouths shut because their jobs, promotion, tenure, funding, or ability to get published depended on it.

At first politicians were cowed into silence but then they realized there was something in it for them. Governments and statists realize that it is a wonderful excuse for raising taxes, growing government, gaining greater control of the economy and other aspects of society. Third world governments and dictatorships love the idea of wealth transfers to them. The big banks were salivating at the idea of carbon credit trading where they would get a skim from every trade, and companies like General Electric stood to make billions manufacturing solar panels and windmill parts. Crony capitalist wannabes sproughted up all over the place hoping to feed at the government trough of subsidies.

Today it is a co-operation between governments, big busines, big finance and ideologues that are pushing the narrative using primarily the owned media and helped along by people that have been conned into believing the story true.

So look for the evidence to support the warmist narrative. Outside of nonsensical climate models you won't find any. It never existed.

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Davos people

'She does NOT mince words and says things that these Davos people need to hear."
Sharsta, don't you realize that the Davos people are wholeheartedly behind the warming meme and using it for their purposes. They probably had a hand in bringing this girl in for the optics.

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On long-term time scales of

On long-term time scales of multi-million years there is no correlation between CO2 and temp as other strong dynamics overwhelm the relatioship. But on a short term multi-decadal time scale there is a relationship, just not what Al Gore implied in his movie.

Ice core data clearly shows that CO2 lags temperature and Co2 levels are forced by temp. Co2 is constantly being washed out of the atmosphere when it rains and mostly ends up in the oceans. The oceans are the great reservoir of CO2 and constantly outgas it. Warm water holds less CO2 and as oceans warm they outgas more. The amount of CO2 in the air depends on the balance between inflow and outflow determined by the temperature of the water.

Oceans are also the heat reservoirs of the planet as all of the stored solar enegy resides there. Oceans absorb most of the sunlight energy on earth and release it slowly. The amount depends on the solar energy flux over many decades. So as oceans warm they release more CO2 and the amount in the atmosphere increases. As they cool due to lower solar input they release less than is sequestered and atmospheric levels drop.

Temperature forces Co2 flux, not the other way around.

That's why temperature in the 20th century went up first. Temps in the late 30s to early 40s were just as high as now and probably slightly higher. Most of the modern day high temp records still come from that time period. CO2 didn't start rising until the 50s when temps were actually falling into the middle 70s before rising again until the end of the century. Temps rose before CO2!

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A real threat

For the last several million years we have alternated between glacial periods when much of North America was covered in ice, sometimes miles high, and interglacial periods such as we are in now. For the last million years the frequencies have been about every 100,000 years with the interglacials such as now lasting 9 to 14 thousand years and the rest of the time10-12C colder and under ice.

The current interglacial is about 11,800 years old. The last four peaked at temperatures higher than this one and there were no SUVs or airplanes around then. They also followed a similar pattern as this one with a quick sharp rise into a peak early into the interglacial and then a slow stairstep down over thousands of years before a steeper drop into the next glacial. The dynamics of why are not understood.

Our interglacial,known as the Holocene, is getting old and since the temperature peak 8,000 years ago has been sliding inexorably down in temp in stairstep fashion since. The slight uptick in recent decades is very mild compared to previous ones and well within natural variability and seems to have stopped in recent years. Current solar activity and predictions of near future solar activity indicate we may be in for another slide down in the near future once ocean system lags have been wrung out.

The next glacial will almost crtainly come relatively soon (not tomorrow) and when it does, modern civilization will not survive it (if we havn't destroyed ourselves in other ways by then). That's a real danger.

I can't seem to be able to paste graghs into the dialogue box which would present things in sharper focus than words. Pity.

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old guy
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re-references

I have been going from memory from readings done over many years and have not archived things. I have been trying to find some articles but have mostly found more technical stuff. There are hundreds of papers debunking the warmist dogma but they are not written for the layman and don't find their way into popular media. Here is a link that references some of them.

http://notrickszone.com/2018/12/10/the-list-grows-now-85-scientific-pape...

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Collapse = The Cycle

Armstrong has long been predicting a collapse of confidence in government, due to the end of the "public cycle" which peaks in 2020 and crashes, ending in 2032.  Might this impending collapse of confidence-in-government be driven by a partial collapse in the planetary ecosystem - and the final realization that our current government is utterly controlled by the top 0.1% in order to harvest both the people and the natural environment?

To Armstrong, cycles are one of these ineluctable things that one cannot change, but must remain acutely aware of if one is to survive (and prosper?) during the times to come.  Armstrong also says that Trump is a counter-cyclical move (a "reaction rally"), and that (most likely) our next President (and Administration) will follow the move-towards-collapse.

I interpret this to mean that the gang in charge will double-down on the harvesting, unwinding the few pro-citizen things that Trump has sought to effect.  Expect: unlimited immigration, re-expanded globalization, increased joblessness and addiction among the Deplorables, mandatory vaccines or no-school-no-travel-no-welfare benefits, sickcare rising to 30% of GDP, facebook & google in complete control over public discourse, hate-speech laws whose specifics are controlled by corporations, another 3-5 Middle Eastern nations destroyed, and "global warming" taxes that allow the rich their private jets, but tax the rest of us into oblivion.  All of this will be cheered on by the corporate media - if you oppose any of these things, you're a nazi-racist-xenophobe-denier.

In other words, don't look for help from "the system."  The downtrend is fully locked in place.  Government will continue to keep the pesticide-sickcare-big-tech-defense-endless-war cartel harvesting all of us until l it all blows up spectacularly.  Perhaps some environmental catastrophe will be the triggering mechanism.

According to Armstrong, confidence in government must collapse before the current structure can be torn down and replaced...with...what exactly?

That will be up to us.  It will be at that moment we can have an impact.  That is when people will be ready to listen.

https://www.armstrongeconomics.com/armstrongeconomics101/opinion/we-are-all-connected-for-a-end-game-purpose/

We are all connected and perhaps we can contribute when the time comes. We are all in this mess together albeit not by our own actions or choice. But just remember, you can lead a horse to water but you cannot force him to drink. We, unfortunately, are in that position. We cannot change the outcome. Nobody will listen. We must remain patient and firm. When the time comes for the crash and burn, then and only then will we have a fleeting moment to turn the course of history in the right direction.

... The talking heads believe they must assign some rational explanation to every move in the markets. They only perpetuate myths and are just void of any reality or logic in the absence of empirical research in favor of presumption. They lack any understanding of the bell curve effect and it is like wine. A glass of red wine is good for the heart. A bottle of red wine is bad for the liver. Anything can kill you if taken to extremes – cold as well as heat. Just remember the bell curve – all things possess a cycle.

In Czechoslovakia, it was only after the Berlin Wall fell that the dissident Vaclev Havel, jailed by the Communists during their time in power, could be elected President of the country.  Things will remain stuck until the turn occurs.  Once the turn happens, events will unfold very quickly.  We might consider constructing a vision of what we would like to see while we await the logic of events.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/V%C3%A1clav_Havel

What is it that we'd like to create?

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old guy
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another reference

Here is a link to an article that explains in more detail what I said in an earlier post.

https://co2islife.wordpress.com/2017/01/30/climate-science-on-trial-co2-...

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skipr
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doubt

It looks like the "Doubt is our product" industry is thriving.

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LesPhelps
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What’s the point old guy?

The thing is, even if you demonstrate, scientifically, that the greenhouse effect is bogus, you can’t ignore the fact that we are TRASHING our one and only planet and the consequences are piling up at an unimaginable pace.

Cause not withstanding, my neck of the woods, Wisconsin, has warmed considerably, the last 35 years.  The hardiness zones in Southern Wisconsin have moved North 150 miles, so far.

I see no point in continuing.  You seem to be in a teaching frame of mind, not a learning mode.  

I noticed you haven’t posted here much in the past.  Perhaps you are unaware that this topic has been debated adnausium since it was first broached on this website.  Many here have tired of the debate and moved on.

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