Can the economic crisis save the planet?

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Can the economic crisis save the planet?

As a long time activist I've always opposed an economic model based on growth and mindless consumption. There was this old Adbusters line that pushed it's readers to ask their leaders and to ask themselves...

"Is economic progress killing the planet?"

The answer has always been obvious if we kept going the way we were.

The news gets darker every day in terms of unemployment and loss of wealth. As it gets closer and closer to home I worry about my family and friends loosing their jobs. I worry that they haven't the slightest clue as to what is coming to them and their refusal to make lifestyle changes in preparation or precaution (even after I've talked to them and nearly begged them to watch the CC to no avail). I see tough times and uncomfortable changes ahead for many of us.

Despite my feelings I have to look at the bigger picture and when I do I see light at the end of the tunnel. And for once in my life I'm feeling like there is some true direction to my future and purpose.

The current economic crisis coupled with the recent mainstreaming of environmental values bring me nothing but long term optimism. I see this as an exhilarating time filled with opportunity.

Could this be what sparks a true paradigm shift?

Can the economic crisis save the planet?

I think so and I hope so. Things need to get worse before they get better. Like an addict sometimes needs to hit rock bottom to see they've got a problem.

Just felt the need to spew and hoping to share some optimism with those who are still at a different stage of awareness. Your thoughts are most welcome.

Visualize whirled peas!
Ron.

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Re: Can the economic crisis save the planet?

Q. Can the economic crisis save the planet?

A. I sure hope so.

Q. Can the economic crisis save the planet and thus save the human species?

A.  I sure hope so.

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Re: Can the economic crisis save the planet?

Will the economic crisis bring about a change in our perception about populations?

I don't know what the answer to this question is... and I believe this is what matters in the end.

 

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Re: Can the economic crisis save the planet?
sunson wrote:

Will the economic crisis bring about a change in our perception about populations?

I don't know what the answer to this question is... and I believe this is what matters in the end.

 

i agree... we need to cease the expon. growth of popul.

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Re: Can the economic crisis save the planet?

The planet - and life - will go on, with or without us.

To my mind, the real question is, "Can the economic crisis save the planet so it will continue to support human life?"

The answer is, I think, a qualified yes. The qualification is that we need to reduce our population by about 60%. How will we do that? It's possible that nature will do it for us, with the intervention of the 4 Horsemen - Pestilence, War, Famine and Death (a sort of catch-all category for anything not covered by the other three).

Other possibilities would be to reduce births by fiat, as was done in China. While we know that education - of women particularly - results in lower birth rates, this was something that was acheived with only limited success while the world was wealthy, so I think it unlikely that in the midst of our current depression any sort of "mass education of women worldwide project" will gain traction.

I think it is unrealistic to expect the entire human race to limit its production of new people willingly - it's a "Tragedy of the Commons" situation writ large. 

The existence of a large proportion of the human population on this planet is dependent in large part on a complex and fragile web of production and distribution that is itself heavily dependent on fossil fuel inputs. Any disruption in this system, due either to reduced access to fossil fuels, a plague that affects plants which the monocultures found in industrial agriculture are particularly susceptible to (something that is already afflicting bananas, which could soon vanish from stores as a result) or a large-scale conflict that prevents dependable shipments is likely to cause shortages that could result in starvation.

It is all, in my estimation, hanging by a thread.

I don't think we can fix the system. It's too large, too complex, and it is based on a cheap energy paradigm that is vanishing rapidly. 

Does this mean we give up? Of course not! You can't fix the world, but you can fix your own locale. You can grow food, you can get your neighbors to grow food, you can learn about Transition and other social movements that seek to change the complex paradigms that our world depends on and find local solutions that are self-sustaining.

One thing, I think, is certain: None of our "leaders" has the faintest idea how to fix the problem. And that's as it should be, because I don't think it can be fixed. The only way to survival is to take matters into our own hands and, together with our families, friends and neighbors forge a simpler, but much more fulfilling, world.

Arthur 

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Re: Can the economic crisis save the planet?
Arthur Vibert wrote:

The planet - and life - will go on, with or without us.

To my mind, the real question is, "Can the economic crisis save the planet so it will continue to support human life?"

The answer is, I think, a qualified yes. The qualification is that we need to reduce our population by about 60%. How will we do that? It's possible that nature will do it for us, with the intervention of the 4 Horsemen - Pestilence, War, Famine and Death (a sort of catch-all category for anything not covered by the other three).

Other possibilities would be to reduce births by fiat, as was done in China. While we know that education - of women particularly - results in lower birth rates, this was something that was acheived with only limited success while the world was wealthy, so I think it unlikely that in the midst of our current depression any sort of "mass education of women worldwide project" will gain traction.

I think it is unrealistic to expect the entire human race to limit its production of new people willingly - it's a "Tragedy of the Commons" situation writ large. 

The existence of a large proportion of the human population on this planet is dependent in large part on a complex and fragile web of production and distribution that is itself heavily dependent on fossil fuel inputs. Any disruption in this system, due either to reduced access to fossil fuels, a plague that affects plants which the monocultures found in industrial agriculture are particularly susceptible to (something that is already afflicting bananas, which could soon vanish from stores as a result) or a large-scale conflict that prevents dependable shipments is likely to cause shortages that could result in starvation.

It is all, in my estimation, hanging by a thread.

I don't think we can fix the system. It's too large, too complex, and it is based on a cheap energy paradigm that is vanishing rapidly. 

Does this mean we give up? Of course not! You can't fix the world, but you can fix your own locale. You can grow food, you can get your neighbors to grow food, you can learn about Transition and other social movements that seek to change the complex paradigms that our world depends on and find local solutions that are self-sustaining.

One thing, I think, is certain: None of our "leaders" has the faintest idea how to fix the problem. And that's as it should be, because I don't think it can be fixed. The only way to survival is to take matters into our own hands and, together with our families, friends and neighbors forge a simpler, but much more fulfilling, world.

Arthur 

HOLY CRAP!!!  I AM SOOO GLAD TO SEE YOU BACK!!!! YAH!

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Re: Can the economic crisis save the planet?
Arthur Vibert wrote:

Does this mean we give up? Of course not! You can't fix the world, but you can fix your own locale. You can grow food, you can get your neighbors to grow food, you can learn about Transition and other social movements that seek to change the complex paradigms that our world depends on and find local solutions that are self-sustaining.

Yeah, that's the only thing that's keeping me from feeling depressed and see a sense of hope.

I completely agree with you every bit. But "Life will go on"? How are you so sure about that? If we're already beyond the tipping point... if the phytoplanktons die-off, there is a possibility we'd have massive positive feedback loops causing the planet to become uninhabitably warm - like venus or something.

I wonder if anybody has done any math on how much CO2 we'll put into the atmosphere if just 50% of the population burns firewood for a few hours a day.  

Even if this 'extreme' doesn't happen, it is likely the web and complexity of life will be reduced by several orders. Maybe there'd just be some fundamental stuff (microbes) and it would probably take a million years for complexity to come back.

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Re: Can the economic crisis save the planet?

sorry... ehem..Embarassed

You might've been back but I this is the first post I've seen from you in awhile.Smile

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Re: Can the economic crisis save the planet?

The world was inhabited for the first couple of billion years exclusively by bacteria, as near as anyone can tell. Then, over time as a byproduct of a new development called photosynthesis a new poison found its way into the atmosphere - oxygen. This was a great challenge at first but life ultimately overcame it, and of course it paved the way for the complex multicellular life as we know it today.

So, am I absolutely sure that "life will go on?" No. But I am 99.999... sure. Perhaps only as bacteria, though I doubt there would be an extinction event so catastrophic that only bacteria would remain.

My real point is that, from the human perspective, it doesn't really matter what happens, if we're not around to see it.

Something will be here. I'd like it to include at least some of us.

Caroline - you're a sweetheart Smile

 

Arthur

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Re: Can the economic crisis save the planet?

Mass depopulation is of course the only "Big Fix" option left that can make the planet habitable for humans and many other species on a long-term "sustainable" basis. The actual number of people that can be supported with a reasonable standard of living is open to debate, but there is no question that the number is significantly lower than the current 6+ billion.

Nature does not care one whit about any aspect of the human condition; we have to play by her rules whether we accept it or not. Let's just hope that we make some deliberate attempts to reduce and control our numbers, and don't leave it entirely up to the laws of nature, because it will not be pretty

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Re: Can the economic crisis save the planet?
Arthur Vibert wrote:

The planet - and life - will go on, with or without us.

To my mind, the real question is, "Can the economic crisis save the planet so it will continue to support human life?"

The answer is, I think, a qualified yes. The qualification is that we need to reduce our population by about 60%. How will we do that? It's possible that nature will do it for us, with the intervention of the 4 Horsemen - Pestilence, War, Famine and Death (a sort of catch-all category for anything not covered by the other three).

....

It is all, in my estimation, hanging by a thread.

I don't think we can fix the system. It's too large, too complex, and it is based on a cheap energy paradigm that is vanishing rapidly. 

Does this mean we give up? Of course not! You can't fix the world, but you can fix your own locale. You can grow food, you can get your neighbors to grow food, you can learn about Transition and other social movements that seek to change the complex paradigms that our world depends on and find local solutions that are self-sustaining.

One thing, I think, is certain: None of our "leaders" has the faintest idea how to fix the problem. And that's as it should be, because I don't think it can be fixed. The only way to survival is to take matters into our own hands and, together with our families, friends and neighbors forge a simpler, but much more fulfilling, world.

Arthur 

Arthur -

Welcome back.  Great string of posts - thanks for making me stop and think a bit.

I offer these (perhaps) rhetorical questions and am genuinely interested in your answers and thoughts.

1.  "What are we saving the world from?"

2.  "Who are we saving it for?"

3.  "Why"

Just to generate some thought provoking friction, I'll toss a few "devil's advocate" answers out there.

1.  Ourselves

2.  Ourselves

3.  That is a really good question - seems a bit presumptuous that we should 'save the world' for the people who are why we need to 'save the world' in the first place.

 

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Re: Can the economic crisis save the planet?

Is the problem too many people, or too many people in the wrong places?

As example, there is no real water shortages as some in the media like to portray the world H20 scenario. The exact same amount of water that is used, evaporates back into the atmosphere and falls again to earth re-cleansed. Water problems result when there is too much water in some locals and not enough in others. It's not amount, it's distribution logistics.

Drive through the vast expanse of the U.S. sometime if you haven't in awhile. Try AZ, TX, NM Utah. What do you see? Mostly nothing; just nature outside of the communities.

Contrast that with Bangladesh, the seventh largest population of any country in the world. Is the problems caused to this tiny country a result of too many people, or too many people in the wrong place, Bangladesh? Tongue out

I don't worry about human population extinction. Populations become extinct rarely through the depletion of, resources as food is just recycled energy that can be obtained from varied sources. IMHO, they become extinct normally through error catastrophe: i.e. when the genome of a species becomes so inundated with deleterious genetic mutations as they accumulate through successive generations that the genome can no longer physically govern the organism. Medical science will not allow this to occur in homo sapiens.

Rather than extinction of us or our island home called Planet Earth, there are going to be major lifestyle changes in it's inhabitants.

I predict that (whether me, you or anyone else is pro or con globalism) we will go to a one world government.  This world government will work to take from the rich and give to the poor balancing out the resources globally. Distribution may not be a problem any more from the world's perspective.

Whether this is good or bad is relative to your perspective: who you are and where you live. I am a spoiled rotten American who is filthy rich compared  to virtually everyone else on earth so I don't like it.

Maybe I will wave to you as our horses pass in the lane on the way to tend to my goat herd. Tongue out

 

 

 

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Re: Can the economic crisis save the planet?

Population is no doubt our biggest challenge. As several of you have already mentioned education is the key here. Through that education I'd like to also see adoption heavily promoted.

Why should educated, compassionate people have children of their own when this poses a burden on the planet while there are already so many other children in need?

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Re: Can the economic crisis save the planet?

Dogs -

Your questions cut to the heart of the matter. It's not, is the world going to end, but rather, is the world going to change in such a way that it will no longer be hospitable to human life.

As you rightly point out in your series of three questions and suggested answers, the human race created this problem in the first place. It seems that any species is capable of doing this, by the way. In the classic study of reindeer on St. Matthew Island in which 29 animals were moved to the island and proceeded to dramatically increase their population due to a lack of predation leading ultimately to a complete dieoff we can draw an analogy to the current human situation. We have eliminated most of our predators (ourselves excepted, of course) and there is no particular restraint on our fertility. We pride ourselves on our intelligence, but even though it's easy to see what's coming, we are apparently no more capable of dealing with it than the reindeer on St. Matthew Island.

As ByronS observes we are not favored by nature over other species. The only species that cares if we live or die is us - and maybe our pets. 

I think "saving the world" is too broad a thought. Most people, not unreasonably, throw their hands up at the thought of attempting something so vast, especially since it took billions of people hundreds of years to get it this messed up in the first place. I'm just focusing on saving my neighborhood these days. I figure if we all do that we'll be in good shape. 

Thanks for the welcome back, by the way. I never really left, I just don't contribute unless I feel strongly enough about something. 

Arthur 

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Re: Can the economic crisis save the planet?
Dogs_In_A_Pile wrote:

I offer these (perhaps) rhetorical questions and am genuinely interested in your answers and thoughts.

1.  "What are we saving the world from?"

2.  "Who are we saving it for?"

3.  "Why"

My answers...

1.  Ourselves

2.  Biodiversity

3.  So we can enjoy and witness in comfort the beauty of life and nature in it's full
blooming bounty. The more we ruin the less we (all living things) get
to enjoy.

But then again I'm a nature nut. I'm sure some will think otherwise.

 

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Re: Can the economic crisis save the planet?
sunson wrote:

I wonder if anybody has done any math on how much CO2 we'll put into the atmosphere if just 50% of the population burns firewood for a few hours a day. 

I'm not sure I understood this... are you saying that burning firewood would INCREASE the CO2 emissions from current or DECREASE it?

Burning firewood is carbon neutral... it releases no more carbon by burning in my stove than it would by rotting on the forest floor. Burning firewood to heat a house definitely causes less carbon emissions than burning heating oil in a furnace/boiler or coal at power plant to make electricity to heat the home (electrical heat is super-inefficient). If you add in the new lower-emission stoves with gas afterburns (catalytic and non-catalytic) you get a pretty efficient heater with a low amount of emissions.

HOWEVER, the possible mass extinction of forests caused by everyone switching to firewood as a heating source in inefficient fireplaces in inefficient homes would seriously effect the planet's ability to reduce any carbon emissions of any source.

If houses were better insulated and stoves/fireplaces better designed, and any number of passive/active solar heat collection devices & designs used (or geo-thermal in appropriate areas), most people would only need to use firewood for a small portion of their heating costs for a few months out of the year (unless, of course, they lived in a really cold climate).

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Re: Can the economic crisis save the planet?
Ruhh wrote:
Dogs_In_A_Pile wrote:

I offer these (perhaps) rhetorical questions and am genuinely interested in your answers and thoughts.

1.  "What are we saving the world from?"

2.  "Who are we saving it for?"

3.  "Why"

My answers...

1.  Ourselves

2.  Biodiversity

3.  So we can enjoy and witness in comfort the beauty of life and nature in it's full blooming bounty. The more we ruin the less we (all living things) get to enjoy.

But then again I'm a nature nut. I'm sure some will think otherwise.

 

I pretty much agree with Ruhh. Possibly adding to #3:  Since we messed things up in our arrogant quest to force our will upon Nature and utter disregard for all other lifeforms we share the planet with, then we're responsible for at least trying to clean it up since we're the ones with the big ol' brains.

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Re: Can the economic crisis save the planet?

Check out this 13 year old girl at a 1992 UN conference. Its a shame that her words still ring so true today:

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Re: Can the economic crisis save the planet?
Dogs_In_A_Pile wrote:
Arthur Vibert wrote:

The planet - and life - will go on, with or without us.

To my mind, the real question is, "Can the economic crisis save the planet so it will continue to support human life?"

The answer is, I think, a qualified yes. The qualification is that we need to reduce our population by about 60%. How will we do that? It's possible that nature will do it for us, with the intervention of the 4 Horsemen - Pestilence, War, Famine and Death (a sort of catch-all category for anything not covered by the other three).

....

It is all, in my estimation, hanging by a thread.

I don't think we can fix the system. It's too large, too complex, and it is based on a cheap energy paradigm that is vanishing rapidly. 

Does this mean we give up? Of course not! You can't fix the world, but you can fix your own locale. You can grow food, you can get your neighbors to grow food, you can learn about Transition and other social movements that seek to change the complex paradigms that our world depends on and find local solutions that are self-sustaining.

One thing, I think, is certain: None of our "leaders" has the faintest idea how to fix the problem. And that's as it should be, because I don't think it can be fixed. The only way to survival is to take matters into our own hands and, together with our families, friends and neighbors forge a simpler, but much more fulfilling, world.

Arthur 

Arthur -

Welcome back.  Great string of posts - thanks for making me stop and think a bit.

I offer these (perhaps) rhetorical questions and am genuinely interested in your answers and thoughts.

1.  "What are we saving the world from?"

If I may.... 

I don't think we're saving the world (earth) from anything... it just is.

Dogs_In_A_Pile wrote:

2.  "Who are we saving it for?"

I do, however, think we're attempting to save the earth for our children.

Dogs_In_A_Pile wrote:

3.  "Why"

It's in our genes; we have been geared to "try and make the best of our today for a better tomorrow" even after realizing that we cannot predict, with certainty, that we will even have a tomorrow.  Having the drive to attempt to make our future a better place is what procures the genes.  The genes want to survive; and if they are to survive, then we must as well.  Bringing prosperity to our genes today gives rise to better probability, in the future, that our decendent genes (children) will survive. (Thoughts reflected by the book "The Selfish Gene" by Richard Dawkins)... I highly recommend it--- very interesting to learn about what drives our bodies to do the things they do.

Dogs_In_A_Pile wrote:

Just to generate some thought provoking friction, I'll toss a few "devil's advocate" answers out there.

1.  Ourselves

2.  Ourselves

3.  That is a really good question - seems a bit presumptuous that we should 'save the world' for the people who are why we need to 'save the world' in the first place.

 

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Re: Can the economic crisis save the planet?
caroline_culbert wrote:

It's in our genes; we have been geared to "try and make the best of our today for a better tomorrow"

The genes want to survive; and if they are to survive, then we must as well.  Bringing prosperity to our genes today gives rise to better probability, in the future, that our decendent genes (children) will survive. (Thoughts reflected by the book "The Selfish Gene" by Richard Dawkins)... I highly recommend it--- very interesting to learn about what drives our bodies to do the things they do. 

 

All evidence to the contrary - Rwanda, Darfur, Afghanistan, Chechnya, Georgia, radical Islam, The Rape of Nanking, The Holocaust, The Crusades, Native American relocation, Nikkeijin relocation, deforestation, slavery, the list goes on and on.

We are not geared to make the best of today for a better tomorrow - just look around at the world today - we are geared to make the best for ME, RIGHT NOW!!!

Most of us don't deserve a better tomorrow because we either directly manufactured the mess that is today or we sat idle in silence with our tacit approval.

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Re: Can the economic crisis save the planet?
Dogs_In_A_Pile wrote:

[We are not geared to make the best of today for a better tomorrow - just look around at the world today - we are geared to make the best for ME, RIGHT NOW!!!

Right on Dogs... an enthusiastic two thumbs up for you

 thumbs up emoticon

 

Much as I wish we all had the Idealistic desire to make things better for the future, it's just not the majority mindset and never was. 

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Re: Can the economic crisis save the planet?
Dogs_In_A_Pile wrote:
caroline_culbert wrote:

It's in our genes; we have been geared to "try and make the best of our today for a better tomorrow"

The genes want to survive; and if they are to survive, then we must as well.  Bringing prosperity to our genes today gives rise to better probability, in the future, that our descendant genes (children) will survive. (Thoughts reflected by the book "The Selfish Gene" by Richard Dawkins)... I highly recommend it--- very interesting to learn about what drives our bodies to do the things they do. 

 

All evidence to the contrary - Rwanda, Darfur, Afghanistan, Chechnya, Georgia, radical Islam, The Rape of Nanking, The Holocaust, The Crusades, Native American relocation, Nikkeijin relocation, deforestation, slavery, the list goes on and on.  

The body and/or the genes gives us no "moral" and/or "ethical" codes to live by.  As far as the genes (everything your body consists of) go it doesn't give a hoot as to whether or not your'e raped, or your neighbors village burns.  Your genes only "care" about the survival of itself (the vehicle which is your corpulent body) and if that means you kill to prevent rape or you run to your neighbors' defense because you "care" about them then that is something that concerns your welfare (something that you care about that will in turn keep you alive so to speak).  It has nothing to do about what's good or reprehensible but it only does so according to what maximizes the probability of the procuration of your genes (you).

Dogs_In_A_Pile wrote:

We are not geared to make the best of today for a better tomorrow - just look around at the world today - we are geared to make the best for ME, RIGHT NOW!!!

Everything we do is based upon probability.  As soon as you utter the two words "right now" the moment is over.  If we were limited to thinking like this, then our world would surely be a different place.  I think as far up as five years + from now and how that will affect me.  Consciousness is always something that takes place as little as nanoseconds prior to the action.  If we thought in terms of, "now", instead of "now" with regards to "tomorrow", then we would not be considered intelligent by any means.  We might as well be back to single-celled organisms.

Dogs_In_A_Pile wrote:

Most of us don't deserve a better tomorrow because we either directly manufactured the mess that is today or we sat idle in silence with our tacit approval.

Genes don't care about what we "deserve" in terms that you and I think about "deserving".  We only think about "deserve" in selfish terms only, in that, we will take with/out regard anything that keeps the genes (and its vehicle) alive.  For those that do not do this, then they need to be eliminated from the gene Poole and it has been so.

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Re: Can the economic crisis save the planet?

Biological Imperative and Survival of the Fittest is pretty straight forward... do whatever is necessary to survive long enough to procreate and pass on your genetic code. Humans are still bound to this principle. Fortunately, we have the intellectual capacity (through years of the same evolutionary process) to be aware of the concepts of "now" and "later".

Unfortunately, like most of the rest of the animals, we're still geared more toward "now" than "later"... maybe not immediate, but pretty much short-term (not everyone, but still the majority). Also, our enhanced brains have allowed us to have much more (often negative) impacts when we make snap short-term solutions rather than figuring out any long-term ramifications. Our big brains also let us rationalize our behaviors when they allow us to step outside the natural order.

Sentience and intellect, coupled with the Biological Imperative, has resulted in a very mutated (often deformed) manifestation in humans. At least IMO.

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Re: Can the economic crisis save the planet?
caroline_culbert wrote:
Dogs_In_A_Pile wrote:
caroline_culbert wrote:

It's in our genes; we have been geared to "try and make the best of our today for a better tomorrow"

The genes want to survive; and if they are to survive, then we must as well.  Bringing prosperity to our genes today gives rise to better probability, in the future, that our descendant genes (children) will survive. (Thoughts reflected by the book "The Selfish Gene" by Richard Dawkins)... I highly recommend it--- very interesting to learn about what drives our bodies to do the things they do. 

 

All evidence to the contrary - Rwanda, Darfur, Afghanistan, Chechnya, Georgia, radical Islam, The Rape of Nanking, The Holocaust, The Crusades, Native American relocation, Nikkeijin relocation, deforestation, slavery, the list goes on and on.  

The book and/or the genes gives us no "moral" and/or "ethical" codes to live by.  As far as the genes (everything your body consists of) go it doesn't give a hoot as to whether or not your'e raped, or your neighbors village burns.  Your genes only "care" about the survival of itself (the vehicle which is your corpulent body) and if that means you kill to prevent rape or you run to your neighbors defense because you "care" about them then that is something that concern your welfare (something that you care about that will in turn keep you alive so to speak).  It has nothing to do about what's good or reprehensible but it only does so according to what maximized the probability of the procuration of your genes (you).

Dogs_In_A_Pile wrote:

We are not geared to make the best of today for a better tomorrow - just look around at the world today - we are geared to make the best for ME, RIGHT NOW!!!

Everything we do is based upon probability.  As soon as you utter the two words "right now" the moment is over.  If we were limited to thinking like this, then our world would surely be a different place.  I think as far up as five years from now and how that will affect me.  Consciousness is always something that takes place as little as nanoseconds prior to the action.  If we thought in terms of, "now", instead of "now" with regards to "tomorrow", then we would not be considered intelligent by any means.  We might as well be back to single-celled organisms.

Dogs_In_A_Pile wrote:

Most of us don't deserve a better tomorrow because we either directly manufactured the mess that is today or we sat idle in silence with our tacit approval.

Genes don't care about what we "deserve" in terms that you and I think about "deserving".  We only think about "deserve" in selfish terms only, in that, we will take with/out regard anything that keeps the genes (and its vehicle) alive.  For those that do not do this, then they need to be eliminated from the gene Poole and it has been so.

Huh?

I have no idea what on Earth you are talking about or trying to convey.  Are you trying to state that a collection of segments of complex nucleic acids think or have a level of consciousness?  Genes "thinking" and "caring".......???? 

How do we go from being geared to "try and make the best of our today for a better tomorrow" to "Your genes only "care" about the survival of itself (the vehicle which is your corpulent body) and if that means you kill to prevent rape or you run to your neighbors defense because you "care" about them then that is something that concern your welfare (something that you care about that will in turn keep you alive so to speak).  It has nothing to do about what's good or reprehensible but it only does so according to what maximized the probability of the procuration of your genes"?

That is a contradiction of your first statement.

What under the sun does being obese - corpulent- (or not) have anything to do with the human genome???  And how is the probability of the act of appointing another as one's agent or attorney - procuration - measured?

I think Gregor Mendel is rolling over in his grave.

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caroline_culbert
Status: Platinum Member (Offline)
Joined: Oct 2 2008
Posts: 624
Re: Can the economic crisis save the planet?
Dogs_In_A_Pile wrote:

Huh?

I have no idea what on Earth you are talking about or trying to convey.  Are you trying to state that a collection of segments of complex nucleic acids think or have a level of consciousness?  Genes "thinking" and "caring".......???? 

Every cell in your body, including those making up your brain, have DNA which contain genes, or genetic coding; programming for your body.

Dogs_In_A_Pile wrote:

How do we go from being geared to "try and make the best of our today for a better tomorrow" to "Your genes only "care" about the survival of itself (the vehicle which is your corpulent body) and if that means you kill to prevent rape or you run to your neighbors defense because you "care" about them then that is something that concern your welfare (something that you care about that will in turn keep you alive so to speak).  It has nothing to do about what's good or reprehensible but it only does so according to what maximized the probability of the procuration of your genes"?

That is a contradiction of your first statement.

No; it's not a contradiction.  Basically, what this means is that your genes have no "moral" compass.  Umm, yeah... how do I explain this.  You are the vehicle (the corpse) that allows the genes to survive in the climate/conditions set up currently.  We mutate according to the probability of what "might" happen next.  Based upon "what might happen next", aka probability thinking (our brains/consciousness), is what matters to genes (& body).  We function according to the will of our genes... etc.

Dogs_In_A_Pile wrote:

What under the sun does being obese - corpulent- (or not) have anything to do with the human genome??? 

Corpulent is reference to body; as opposed to just having cells just float all over the place; these cells, containing genes, are embodied by corpses (or body).

cor⋅pu⋅lent

/ˈkɔrpyələnt/ Show Spelled Pronunciation [kawr-pyuh-luhnt] Show IPA

–adjective

large or bulky of body;

or portly;

or stout;

or fat.

Dogs_In_A_Pile wrote:

And how is the probability of the act of appointing another as one's agent or attorney - procuration - measured?

I think Gregor Mendel is rolling over in his grave.

sorry... I meant procuring; not procuration

procuring (used when treating organ harvesting)... procure the organ before the transplant... etc.

 

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Dogs_In_A_Pile
Status: Martenson Brigade Member (Offline)
Joined: Jan 4 2009
Posts: 2606
Re: Can the economic crisis save the planet?
caroline_culbert wrote:
Dogs_In_A_Pile wrote:

Huh?

I have no idea what on Earth you are talking about or trying to convey.  Are you trying to state that a collection of segments of complex nucleic acids think or have a level of consciousness?  Genes "thinking" and "caring".......???? 

Every cell in your body, including those making up your brain, have DNA which contain genes, or genetic coding; programming for your body.

Dogs_In_A_Pile wrote:

How do we go from being geared to "try and make the best of our today for a better tomorrow" to "Your genes only "care" about the survival of itself (the vehicle which is your corpulent body) and if that means you kill to prevent rape or you run to your neighbors defense because you "care" about them then that is something that concern your welfare (something that you care about that will in turn keep you alive so to speak).  It has nothing to do about what's good or reprehensible but it only does so according to what maximized the probability of the procuration of your genes"?

That is a contradiction of your first statement.

No; it's not a contradiction.  Basically, what this means is that your genes have no "moral" compass.  Umm, yeah... how do I explain this.  You are the vehicle (the corpse) that allows the genes to survive in the climate/conditions set up currently.  We mutate according to the probability of what "might" happen next.  Based upon "what might happen next", aka probability thinking (our brains/consciousness), is what matters to genes (& body).  We function according to the will of our genes... etc.

Dogs_In_A_Pile wrote:

What under the sun does being obese - corpulent- (or not) have anything to do with the human genome??? 

Corpulent is reference to body; as opposed to just having cells just float all over the place; these cells, containing genes, are embodied by corpses (or body).

cor⋅pu⋅lent

/ˈkɔrpyələnt/ Show Spelled Pronunciation [kawr-pyuh-luhnt] Show IPA

–adjective

large or bulky of body;

or portly;

or stout;

or fat.

Dogs_In_A_Pile wrote:

And how is the probability of the act of appointing another as one's agent or attorney - procuration - measured?

I think Gregor Mendel is rolling over in his grave.

sorry... I meant procuring; not procuration

procuring (used when treating organ harvesting)... procure the organ before the transplant... etc.

Back to original post - genes do not think, genes are not aware, genes do not feel.  You talk as if genes possess some level of directive consiousness.  Genes do not possess a will.  Human beings do not function according to the "will" of their genes, because genes do not have a "will". 

Your first post stated that through our genes we are "geared to try and make the best of our today for a better tomorrow".  Then you state that "Your genes only "care" about the survival of itself"  Overlooking the fact that genes don't "think", only caring about its own survival is hardly gearing a human "to make the best of today for a better tomorrow".

Genes do not roll the dice and do any type of probabilistic determination.  They don't mutate according to the probability of what might happen - they either mutate through replication of damage to the helix - like that resulting from exposure to gamma or neutron radiation, or they mutate in response to something that has happened.  Genes don't have any way of "knowing what might happen next".  Thinking people can assess what is going on and guess as to what is going to happen, but until it does happen, genes don't "do" anything except what they were coded to do right then and there.  In short, genes do not possess predictive reasoning ability.  Molecular genes are transcribed as a unit, evolutionary genes are inherited - neither undergo mutative processes because of any predictive capability they possess.

A gene is merely a portion of one's DNA string.  Genes aren't buy themselves deterministic - they hold the information to build and maintain their cells and pass genetic traits to offspring.  Genes contain coded segments that define what the gene does and non-coded sequences that determine when the gene is expressed.  Genes don't "think" about this function - it just is.

Corpulent is an adjective and means obese or bulky and describes the body, not reference to existence of a physical body body.

You mean coporeal

cor-po-re-al 

Pronunciation:
\kȯr-ˈpȯr-ē-əl\
Function:
adjective
Etymology:
Middle English, from Latin corporeus of the body, from corpor-, corpus
Date:
15th century
1: having, consisting of, or relating to a physical material body: as a: not spiritual b: not immaterial or intangible : substantial 2archaic : corporal
plantguy90's picture
plantguy90
Status: Gold Member (Offline)
Joined: Jan 26 2009
Posts: 271
Re: Can the economic crisis save the planet?

So too much education causes individuals to reject natural laws and consciously avoid having children.  That education also brings a form of "higher" thinkng where some feel a bond to things that are not made up of their own genetic material, other humans(socialists), other species(nature nuts).

I am not that highly evolved.  I only care about my children, that they have the tools and means to continue on this rock, as different or nasty as it gets.  Recently I observed that behavior in a field mouse, when a dog discovered her still blind babies and started to do what curious dogs who eat mice do.  Can that prime directive also work within the context of saving the planet?  I dunno, I wasn't programmed that way.  Maybe I and my genes should go extinct.

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Dogs_In_A_Pile
Status: Martenson Brigade Member (Offline)
Joined: Jan 4 2009
Posts: 2606
Re: Can the economic crisis save the planet?
plantguy90 wrote:

I dunno, I wasn't programmed that way.  Maybe I and my genes should go extinct.

plant -

What have your genes predicted and what are they willing you to do?  Laughing

plantguy90's picture
plantguy90
Status: Gold Member (Offline)
Joined: Jan 26 2009
Posts: 271
Re: Can the economic crisis save the planet?

Dogs, is that an ecology question?  In short prepare for the worst, but hope for the best :)

 

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Dogs_In_A_Pile
Status: Martenson Brigade Member (Offline)
Joined: Jan 4 2009
Posts: 2606
Re: Can the economic crisis save the planet?

plant -

More of a rhetorical question.  I'm certain you are assessing what is going on around you, making your own decisions about courses of action and imposing your will as you see fit and necessary.  Your genes are just going along for the ride.

I'm also preparing for the worst and hoping for the best - but after 24 years in the military, I temper my planning with the reality that nothing is so bad that it can't get worse.  Cool

plantguy90's picture
plantguy90
Status: Gold Member (Offline)
Joined: Jan 26 2009
Posts: 271
Re: Can the economic crisis save the planet?

Man, my biggest regret is I did not serve my country with honor. 

Actually I do care about whats going to happen to this earth, and will vote and volunteer time/effort/money accordingly, but priority #1 within the big picture is my family.  They're not perfect, neither am I, but they are kin. ;)

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