In the face of the 3E’s how valuable is human life?
As citizens of a rich country with a powerful military and good natural resources we should fare relatively better than most. It is an ugly process but history shows clearly that it has always been this way. In developed nations we are well insulated from this struggle and it is easy to ignore.
A question, not a challenge: Have you seen evidence that we (so to speak) haven’t already offshored too much to have the insulating capacities here?
With respect to the title question, I strongly recommend looking for answers in your locale, where neighbors’ attention to the question can make a difference for you and your family, not so much in cyberspace, where it’s an abstract exercise.
Good question deggleton, and challenges are always welcome with me. I often learn from them.
My wording was a bit vague. What I meant was that we don’t have to till the soil by hand, slaughter our own livestock, etc. We don’t have to fight the country next door for vital resources because we can buy whatever we want since we are (have been) the pre-eminent player in global commerce. If they don’t want to play we can usually intimidate them with force. Our present system is very good at supplying what we need as individuals and distracting us with diversions so we don’t think about the squalor of other people’s lives, and can’t imagine it happening to us. That is the insulation I meant.
Yes, I agree with you. Our insulation is eroding fast. We have allowed our economy to be hollowed out in many ways. I think that shipping our manufacturing overseas has left us vulnerable and we are riding on past glories. Things are already changing. Most people just won’t acknowledge it yet, but they are starting to sense it.
What is your view?
What you described is a triage situation. These are gut wrenching but sometimes unavoidable in tragic circumstances. Read the part of E Ape’s message that I quoted. Making sure that others don’t survive is not the same as leaving them to themselves when nothing can be done for them. Maybe E Ape would care to comment on his intent.
To answer the prior question about the maxed out rowboat with 10 people on it and 50 need help in the distance:
No I would not want to go and attempt to save the 50 people. Reason number 1 being that I put at serious risk the other 9 people that are currently safe on the boat including myself. Sometimes in life fate plays its role. It could have been me in the ocean with the other 50. If I drown then that is my fate. Now if I saw the boat coming I would do everything in my power to get on the boat to survive. At the moment it would be a natural instinct to do whatever I could to survive. Would I allow myself to willingly die when there is a clear shot of survival? Probably not,even if that meant that others would die at the expense of my living. Assume there were young children in the water with me. Then perhaps they would have priority. A guy my age would face a tougher challenge.
Perhaps I am incredibly selfish? But I would tell the others not to steer towards the doomed group lest we all perish.
Never underestimate the other persons greed.
Not many would give their life for another . After you warn people of the dangers and tell them over and over to get on the boat or to build their own boat and they laugh at you or think you are crazy …
If people want help they will listen … yes you have to give them the message but there just comes a time when you take care of your own and consider the door closed . I do not consider that taking a life . Might be situation ethics but guess we won’t really know until we are there .
Totally different than plotting to take someones elses things or life .
Have you seen evidence that we (so to speak) haven’t already offshored too much to have the insulating capacities here?
I agree with you. Our insulation is eroding fast. We have allowed our economy to be hollowed out in many ways. I think that shipping our manufacturing overseas has left us vulnerable and we are riding on past glories. Things are already changing. Most people just won’t acknowledge it yet, but they are starting to sense it.
What is your view?
You sensed my view, I’d say. I tend to think most in the USA are both far out of balance and far out on a limb, and that these unrealistic and unsatisfying conditions are masked by energy near peak, borrowing near peak, extraction of resources near peak and experiments performed on society near peak. As these peaks begin show up in the collective rear-view mirror, large numbers of people will wish for balance and a perch where the limb barely bends, but in awkward scrambles cluelessness and dense packing will hurt many and frustrate even more.
[quote=The Evolutionary Ape]
Peak Oil and many other peak occurences will reduce the population. I don’t see any other way around it. If that’s the case, it seems that part of surviving the transition period is making sure others don’t. This sounds awful, but I’m starting to lean that way and am looking for any logic that would help me make moral sense of this. it seems like such a awful way to believe in light of what I have been raised to believe. Thanks in advance.
What kind of a human can think it acceptable to make sure that others don’t survive? Did your parents teach you nothing? What do you tell your children about the meaning of life? Moral sense and cold logic part company here. There is no moral way to add to the undeserved suffering of others in order to save yourself.
Instead of cherrypicking that part of my arguement I wish you’d addressed the quoted comment or the home intruder scenario (second reply) along with some of the other logic I presented. It’s not hard to take one point and twist it out of context compared to the whole arguement.
No worries though. I’m going to explain my view, but offer two scenarios before doing so that I hope you will give thought to.
I love the 10 people on a life boat illustration, but I’d change it. You are on a life boat meant for 10 people, but there are 15 people on it. Four of them are your three kids and significant other. The lifeboat is sinking and it is inevitable that without it getting to the 10 people maximum everyone is going to drown. Stan what do you do? I’d suspect at best you’d jump off and pull four others with you and at worst push 5 others out. Either of these answers ensure someone else will not survive so that others can.
Scenario two. The transistion period has hit and as well as you planned you are out of food and clean water. It’s been this way for a week. Your kids are starving and as much as you’ve tried you can’t find any food or clean water. However you know of a family down the road that has both. While you’ve already asked them to share, they tell you they only have enough for their family. How far are you willing to go to secure that food and water for your kids? Or flip it and say they are the family without the food and water and you only have enough for your family. How far are you willing to go to protect your resources? Are still willing to tell them you cannot share, knowing that they are likely to die as a result?
There’s not an option on the table that says 6.6 billion people can exist on the earth for the next century and enjoy the current way of life. There’s not an option on the table that says population can increase exponentially and the current standards of life will stay intact. There is an option coming that says some can enjoy a new way of life, but this will mean a decrease in population. I would like to see my family as well as myself enjoy that new way of life. Do I want people to die? No, not just for death’s sake. But given the options on the table and if someone was to say I can pick which camp I am in, then yes I choose to live knowing that others must die.
There’s a joke about a bear attacking a group in the woods. The joke is that you don’t have to outrun the bear you only have to outrun the slowest person in the group. And I guess that’s my stance. I would rather the bear doesn’t attack at all, but if it does, I’d rather not be the slowest person in the group. That means I hope someone else is slower than me.
To a some extent this is already happening. Without going into detail, our current quality of life is very oil dependent. Our pharmaceuticals, medical technology, transportation, robust agricultural distribution system, etc. Yet the US has little oil of its own that makes up our oil consumption. So we acquire it from other nations or support dictators that will allow us to take it for cheap. But one way is that we go to war for it. As Iraq has proven many innocent people die as a result of these wars. The bullets that kill, the bombs that blow up villages, the pay of the soliders are paid for by our tax dollars. And that’s not even about survival, but rather keeping gasoline at under $3 a gallon and our king like ways of life. Many innocent people are already dying so that we can keep our current way of life and that’s funded by our tax dollars and the politicians we vote in and allow to represent our nation. How much further will people go when it becomes a matter of survival?
I wish my fellow man no ill, but it has always been the survival of the fittest. It’s only been masked by social/medical programs that extend the life of those who would have died 100 years ago from preditation, ill health , starvation or natural disasters. What’s coming will be nasty, some areas of the third world will be little effected, as big chunks of the human population there are already without all of the above, many never had it in the first place. Where it will hit worst is in the first world, particularly in the USA where corpulent citizens go ballistic over the local McDonalds running out of Mcnuggets, these people will kill you over a doughnut. You can expect as Clint eastwood said in the ” Unforgiven”
“All right, I’m coming out. Any man I see out there, I’m gonna shoot him. Any sumbitch takes a shot at me, I’m not only gonna kill him, but I’m gonna kill his wife, all his friends, and burn his damn house down.”
That is pretty much what you can expect in America once the public realizes there are NO lifeboats. It already happened after Katrina, as first responders that were there have reported, for some strange reason it never made the news……
First scenario – alternate 5 men in the water at a time for as long as they can stand. Women and Children stay in. There could be a selfish SOB that won’t take his turn unless you make him. Whatever the situation, you manage it the best you can with the goal of keeping everyone alive. Everyone may not make it but those that do know they tried.
Second scenario – you share the best you can. The idea is to gear up for such an event with the idea that you may have to help others. Too many may come for help. You can only do what you can do.
For both scenarios you Pray.
You’re right in a sense that the strong will survive. But the strong will also help others survive. Where is the whole idea of community? Does it apply? Or are we all just pissin in the wind on this web site when it comes to a SHTF occurrence and the communities we speak of?
And I agree that we already practice population control here in the good old USA.
Please don’t misunderstand my response. I appreciate this topic. Everyone needs to know that you can’t always count on your fellow man. And when it all comes down you sure won’t be able to count on the Government.