‘In 20 years there won’t be ice’


by Sunny
6th October, 2009 at 11:16 pm    

An excellent 4 min film by Greenpeace campaigner Frida Bengtsson taken during the Arctic Sunrise’s three month expedition investigating the impact of climate change in the Arctic Circle.

In 20 years there won’t be ice in the Arctic in the summer. And yet there are still people with their heads in the sand over climate change. via Kevin Blowe’s blog


              Post to del.icio.us


Filed in: Environmentalism






35 Comments below   |  

Reactions: Twitter, blogs


  1. Cjcjc — on 7th October, 2009 at 8:40 am  

    No ice in 20 years?

    I feel another bet coming on!

  2. Sunny — on 7th October, 2009 at 9:15 am  

    How much money do you want to lose cjcjc? You’re already losing one!

  3. Cjcjc — on 7th October, 2009 at 9:27 am  

    It’s all going to charity though!

  4. bobsy — on 7th October, 2009 at 12:48 pm  

    ECOHYSTERIA !

    Save the Wombles!

    Save the drowning polar bears!

    Let’s start a land fund to grow bananas on the warm Greenland uplands and raise mighty flocks of sheep on the grassy meadows of Spitzbergen IF – IF – global warming hits!

    [NB: Thirty years ago we were all wetting ourselves in terror of global cooling ... but that's another story!]

  5. Kismet Hardy — on 7th October, 2009 at 12:53 pm  

    That’s where you’re all wrong. I’m setting my washing machine to 30 instead of 40. I AM SINGLE-HANDEDLY SAVING THE WORLD. What a load of alarmist tosh. Only people excited by this news are people thinking how they can charge more money for your stupidity

    Mother earth is bigger than our collective self-importance. She’s been through worse, and she’ll survive whatever shit you throw at her. The arrogance of Man…

  6. misssc — on 7th October, 2009 at 5:05 pm  

    Global warming?? Pssssh! I’m wearing pyjamas under my jeans and 5 pairs of socks and I’m still freezing!

  7. Don — on 7th October, 2009 at 5:39 pm  

    Kismet,

    Of course you are right. The planet can handle anything we puny humans can throw at it.

    The truth of this idea is pretty obvious. Environmental crises are a fundamental part of the history of the earth: there have been sudden and dramatic temperature excursions, severe glaciations, vast asteroid and comet impacts. Yet the earth is still here, unscathed.

    There have been mass extinctions associated with some of these events, while other mass extinctions may well have been triggered by subtler internal changes to the biosphere. But none of them seem to have done long-term harm.

    http://www.edge.org/q2006/q06_11.html#morton

    We, as a species, may not be around to see it but the earth will continue to be a viable biosphere regardless of our profligate ways.

  8. Dave S — on 7th October, 2009 at 6:24 pm  

    (Oh bloody hell, I’m back, but I’m not sticking around!)

    Kismet Hardy @ 5:

    Mother earth is bigger than our collective self-importance. She’s been through worse, and she’ll survive whatever shit you throw at her. The arrogance of Man…

    Kismet, the Earth will survive climate change – this has never been in doubt.

    It’s humans that aren’t going to survive it – and not just humans, but the countless other species of animals and plants which inhabit this planet, and upon which our existence depends (bees, for example).

    On the path to our self-caused demise will be totalitarian government “solutions”, extreme weather, political instability, countless wars, millions starving, violent survivalism, mass forced migration, squalor and disease, unhappiness and suffering on a literally unimaginable scale – you name it, it’s coming your way, unless we get it together and act now.

    We are not talking about “saving the World”, we are talking about avoiding the collective suicide of humanity and the ecocide of the only known example of life in the universe. If that’s not worth trying to save, then what is?

    You want “arrogance of Man”? Take a look in the mirror, as you gamble with your home and your life (and with the lives of billions of others who have done nothing to deserve this, but happen to be on the same spinning rock as you).

    Once again, I pop into Pickled Politics for a moment, and I give up. I actually throw my hands up in the air, and give up, vowing to go away from this bloody website and not come back for quite some time again.

    I’m going to make damn sure that I do everything I can to survive (peacefully) and help others to survive, while you nutters who just don’t want to “get it” (perhaps because it would mean having to willingly lower your expectations about what life “owes you”, and that’s just soooo much to ask) attempt to drag us all over the cliff.

    “Less” is not a dirty word – “less” could lead to an incredible quality of life for everybody! But instead of doing something sensible and planned now, we (you) are going to end up with “less” the hard way – the way that means we’ve arrived there because we have no other options left, and the way which drags us all through an incredible amount of unnecessary suffering on the way.

    Just because some so-called “environmentalists” are opportunist tossers who are only in it for the money, doesn’t mean the message from the scientists any less real. Some people will still be selling their own grandmothers while their homes burn.

    I don’t want to charge money for anything. I just want to live my life, treading lightly on the Earth, and for my children to have the same “luxury”.

    How can people not understand climate change by now? What part of the greenhouse effect science don’t you sceptics accept?

    1. CO2 is a greenhouse gas and an increase in CO2 levels will retain more heat – this has been accepted science for over a century.

    2. CO2 levels have risen by 30% since 1750 and levels are now far higher than any time in the last 600,000 years – this is a measurable fact.

    3. We are pumping out 27Bn tonnes of CO2 each year by burning fossil fuels – again, this is a measurable fact.

    Which bit of that is actually debatable, let alone *up* for debate? (No doubt you’ll claim “other”, or that it’s too late, or that we can’t do anything to stop it now so we might as well not do anything at all.)

    Time to get a handle on reality, or just come clean and admit that you really don’t care what happens – perhaps because you don’t believe it will happen to you?

    Honestly, I really do despair sometimes. How did the human race reach such a low point that many (most?) of us won’t even lift a finger to change the course of our lives to prevent our own demise?

    What happened to us to cause such complacency about our lives, and about the lives of other living things?

    The world is constantly changing, and we need to constantly change with it. Love and care for each other as if you are all the same family, or perish.

  9. Kismet Hardy — on 7th October, 2009 at 6:30 pm  

    ECO-MANIACS PLEASE TAKE NOTE: Stop saying you’re trying to save the planet. You’re trying to save humans. There’s a big difference.

    And if the planet wants to be shot of the lot of us for raping her natural resources and allowing our masters to fuck her up the arse with reactors and plants, then you can hardly blame her.

    And you certainly can’t blame the guy struggling to keep his organic oranges from spilling out of his 5p carrier bag…

  10. Kismet Hardy — on 7th October, 2009 at 6:36 pm  

    (Dave S. I’m not saying: ‘I have the right to stuff loo roll down a toilet seat until I need to flush the thames dry because I’m free’. I totally believe everyone should do their bit not to be a twat – to this day I pick up litter that’s not mine. Bee in my bonnet is with all those eco-knobs who think it’s okay to be taxed and victimised because it’s their fault, and worrse, that they actually think changing their washing machine setting or avoiding organic imported fruit will make the REAL difference. Go out there and shut down a reactor and then I’ll give you a sausage)

  11. Don — on 7th October, 2009 at 6:53 pm  

    And if the planet wants to be shot of the lot of us…

    The planet doesn’t ‘want’ anything. Actions have consequences, and if our actions continue unchecked the best case scenario is unpleasant and the worst case is mass extinction.

    I know I quibble with Dave about some of his points, (and I agree that a lot of eco-action is a way of feeling good without actually doing anything constructive. A bit like prayer.) But in broad terms he’s pretty sound.

    And reactors are not a significant contributor to climate change.

  12. Dave S — on 7th October, 2009 at 7:00 pm  

    Kismet @ 10, fair enough – sorry if I misunderstood your angle before.

    I also (as you appear to) strongly object to the idea that we can ethically consume and purchase our way to low impact living – it’s total bollocks.

    I myself am going for the “pioneering” approach, in which I (and friends) are setting out to experiment and demonstrate that you can live a low impact, mixed technology (low tech in general with some communal hi-tech), happy, warm, sustainable life. with great community spirit and no shortage of fun, without having to give up everything. In fact, I’m aiming to demonstrate that in doing so, we have little to lose, and everything to gain.

    I aim to create a life which will be the envy of the tired, overworked, middle class employees of pointlessness, and inspire them to create the same for themselves.

    Among other things, I’m sick of:

    * False dichotomies and “choices” which aren’t – we need a panoply of approaches, although currently we seem to be looking at mostly a panoply of non-approaches and distractions.

    * “Environmentalists” who aren’t prepared to walk their talk – or even worse, who are in it for the money or fame.

    * Pointless symbolic gestures billed as “action” on the matter, with the associated back-slapping.

    * Profit and market based “solutions” sticking their ugly noses into everything.

    * Bureaucracy getting in the way of us solving things.

    * Politicians who will say anything and do nothing.

    * Climate change denial.

    Let’s please just get on and live lightly and joyfully – so that all of us can do the same. There’s no need to go out with a bang when we can enjoy our lives fully, without making ourselves extinct in the process.

  13. cjcjc — on 7th October, 2009 at 7:56 pm  

    Kismet – I think you’ll find that reactors are the only solution as we are not going to follow the Dave S route….

  14. douglas clark — on 7th October, 2009 at 9:22 pm  

    I tend to agree with Don @ 11. It’s not just the Earth that doesn’t care about us though, neither does the entire Universe.

    If we cannot make the evolutionary leap from parasite to symbiote, I think we are done for. We have to adapt to the Earth, for the Earth is completely incapable of adapting to us.

  15. Dave S — on 7th October, 2009 at 9:26 pm  

    cjcjc: It’s a shame you’re probably right in many ways (that people will not willingly go “my” route), and thus we’re probably already screwed.

    Nevertheless, although I strongly object to nuclear power, I am not immovable on the subject. I believe there are a lot of questions surrounding it – questions which have not been answered, and need to be if it is to be considered for our future power supply.

    Here are some of my objections – I’d love to see your answers (really!):

    1. The waste legacy. Nuclear waste will take thousands of years to become anywhere near safe, and even then is likely to remain toxic (as in “a highly poisonous chemical”) as well as somewhat radioactive. It is virtually a certainty that we cannot build containers or systems that will last as long as the waste will remain dangerous to us. We are therefore saddling future generations – who will almost certainly not have the same resources available as we do now – with dealing with it, under the assumptions of future technology which does not (and may never) exist. We have no idea how they will manage to do this, and it is grossly unjust to expect that they will “find a way”.

    Imagine how you would feel if we were forced to deal with piles of toxic, radioactive waste from the Romans – and if they’d used up all the resources so that it was a real struggle for us even at the best of times.

    That is what we’re sentencing our ancestors to, if we expand nuclear. (Really, they are already sentenced to it because of our nuclear activities thus far – but why make their burden any worse?)

    The nuclear waste legacy is (almost literally) a ticking bomb for future generations, who will not have the resources available to deal with it (because we’ll have used them up).

    What do you propose?

    2. Nuclear fuel is probably going to run out a lot sooner than “expected”. Peak Uranium (U235) will be here pretty soon after we switch to using it as a major source of power, and although there are other reactor designs which can use and breed different fuels, these are all (as far as I know) still at the experimental stages and are nowhere near approaching viability for mass use. In fact, a few have proved pretty dangerous, and had to be shut down – eg. Monju in Japan. There may be loads of U238 out there, but we can’t make use of it. Other fuels such as Thorium are again only at the experimental stages, as far as I know.

    Where is the nuclear fuel going to come from to power these reactors when the U235 runs out?

    3. As demonstrated pretty aptly on the roads, and with broadband, and with many other societal phenomena (down to even boring and seemingly insignificant things like supermarket opening times): demand expands to meet supply.

    If we can create “infinite” electricity, then we will also create “infinite” industries to run on it, and “infinite” resource usage and pollution to go with them too. Yet we live in a finite world, which is already unable to cope with the demand for “infinite” economic growth.

    The availability of massive amounts of electricity doesn’t do anything to ensure our future is sustainable, and could in all likelihood ensure that it is exactly the opposite.

    Is it truly a better course of action to continue the pursuit of this “infinite” school of thought (which has arguably already been shown to be false many times over), or should we not take heed of the writing on the wall and take the time to re-examine our approach and priorities in life?

    How much electricity do we really “need”?

    (Again, we’re back to the idea that “less” is a dirty word, and that to even consider discussing it is political suicide! I think we need to grow up and move beyond this, before a figment of our imagination kills us all!)

    4. Nuclear fuel is not “carbon neutral”. All factors considered, during the lifetime of a nuclear power plant, per unit of electricity, nuclear emits about 75% as much CO2 as a gas power plant does.

    Is this really enough of a saving in emissions to justify things like the nuclear waste legacy?

    Perhaps you think better technology will come along and reduce it further? Yet still, nuclear is far less sustainable and still contributes a lot more towards climate change than renewable power does.

    I postulate that nuclear power is fundamentally unsustainable for a wide variety of reasons, and that no improvement to the technology can “fix” what is a fundamentally broken idea.

    Yes, granted, it may delay the problems for a generation or so, but they are not going to go away, even with massive investment in nuclear.

    Thus, nuclear will not be our saviour – however much millions of people like you are hoping that it will be.

    The only answer, really, is to critically re-examine how we live our lives, and change them so that they are sustainable and low impact, as soon as possible.

    I am not saying this because I am a miserable bastard, or because I have any particular axe to grind with you or anybody else. I am saying it because I believe it is a self-evident fact.

    We have been living beyond our means for so long that we’ve forgotten the existence of any other way, and we cannot continue like this because we are running out of the means to do it. Another way is needed, and fast.

    Nuclear power will be at best a short delay for the inevitable need to address the way we live our lives.

    Let’s deal with the problems now – once and for all – rather than putting it off and trying to pretend that we can just carry on as before.

    Maybe my words will come back to resonate in your head at some point in the future. Maybe they won’t.

    I hope I’m dead before it matters (I probably have another 40-50 years alive if I’m lucky), but I’m pretty sure my daughter won’t be.

    This troubles me greatly.

    By the way, do you have any children? Or nephews / nieces / other young people who you care about? Just out of interest.

  16. douglas clark — on 7th October, 2009 at 10:17 pm  

    Hmm…

    I stand somewhere between Corporal ‘Dave’ Frazer, and a rather cynical Captain ‘cjcjc’ Mainwaring.

    We only thing we have going for us is our brains. Nowt else.

    There are some means of generating power that are not carbon dependent, some of which are extremely high tech and some of which are not. There are a lot more in the pipeline.

    It has now got to the stage that we ought to be betting on every realistic horse in the race, for we have the wealth and we have the incentive. The latter probably doesn’t need to be spelled out unless you are a branch bank manager…

    An inconclusive list includes stuff:

    (1) like accelarating nuclear fusion research. (Perhaps paying full grants for physics students, ensuring that all research posts in fusion attract salaries of, say £100,000 pa with bonuses of perhaps a couple of million for any progress at all. This could be paid for from hanging sufficient numbers of parsitical bankers from the nearest lamp post, and emptying their wallets. Even though this is satire, you ought to see the point.)

    (2) Looking at the potential for covering the worlds deserts in photovoltaic cells, or solar concentrators. (This could be paid for by encouraging oil producers to just make more money from electricity than they currently do from the black stuff. Whilst obviously re-educating them. Perhaps by redirecting some of the electricity so generated to their extremities.)

    (3) By looking again at hydo-electric, which could apparently power the whole of, for instance. Pakistan / India if the money was forthcoming. (Perhaps through finding out who the hell is opposed to this idea and applying some of the electricity from the desert nations to their extremeties too.)

    (4) By looking to space based solar arrays and what they offer. (Perhaps the solution at 1 has to be extended to engineers and astrophysicists and the like, just means more bankers have to suffer. If we run out of bankers we could always start on oil and coal producers.)

    Etc, etc, etc….

    There are solutions, but there are troubles ahead..

    Hydrogen economy anyone?

  17. cjcjc — on 8th October, 2009 at 8:46 am  

    By the way, do you have any children? Or nephews / nieces / other young people who you care about? Just out of interest.

    No. I loathe all young people and am delighted by the bleakness of their future.

    Captain ‘cjcjc’ Mainwaring

    Who are you? ARP Warden Hodges perhaps? :-)

    Of course we all want to be either Sgt Wilson or Pt Walker.

    In real life, though being a bit younger (!), I am probably more like Godfrey.

  18. douglas clark — on 8th October, 2009 at 9:28 am  

    cjcjc,

    Heh! Back to front surely?

    ARP Hodges for you it is then! And on that basis, I am presumeably, Private Fraser :-)

    ‘Doomed I tell you, doomed!’

    In real life, though being a bit younger (!), I am probably more like Godfrey.

    Not at all, you are no more like Godfrey than a barrage balloon!

  19. douglas clark — on 8th October, 2009 at 9:35 am  

    cjcjc,

    There is an old joke, perhaps L Sprague de Camp, I can’t be bothered to look it up. But it made me think of you:

    “I have the heart of a little child.

    Pickled on my desk”

  20. cjcjc — on 8th October, 2009 at 10:49 am  

    Actually, according to Wikipedia, there was quite a lot to Godfrey’s backstory than most of us probably remember, having been awarded the MM in WW1.

    Private Charles Godfrey MM (Arnold Ridley)—born in 1866, he is the platoon’s medical orderly, who had served in World War I as a conscientious-objecting medical orderly, winning the Military Medal at the Battle of the Somme where he went out into No Man’s Land and saved several lives (as mentioned in the episode “Branded”) before becoming a tailor at the Army & Navy Stores where he had worked for 25 years. Godfrey, said to be 59, was an amiable, vague, lifelong bachelor who lived with his sisters Dolly and Cissy in an idyllic cottage, and was a martyr to his weak bladder, leading to many requests to be “excused”. He was very loyal to Captain Mainwaring, except on one occasion when he took part in a plot to make Mainwaring’s feet hurt.

    Clearly he was played older than 59. More like 80 I would say!
    In fact he can’t have been 59 if born in 1866, as he would have been 73 in 1939 – that’s more like it.
    Arnold Ridley himself was a quite successful playwright as well as actor.

  21. cjcjc — on 8th October, 2009 at 11:04 am  

    On topic, a Times science supplement today features:

    Dr Kenji Nishihara of the Japanese AEA who is working on a process to shorten the half-life of radioactive waste

    Prof Bob Cywinski who is researching alternative fuel to uranium

    Gary Spirnak whose Solen Corporation plans to launch a satellite covered with solar panels which will transmit power back to earth (apparently Japan has committed £13bn to build a solar power plant in space by 2040)

    I am actually the opposite of cynical.
    I am eternally optimistic as to what the genius of human ingenuity can achieve!

  22. douglas clark — on 8th October, 2009 at 11:18 am  

    cjcjc @ 20,

    Interesting.

    OK, if you want to be Private Godfrey MM on this forum, I’m sure no-one will object!

    What about the potential back-story. What do they call them, prequels or summat?

    I really liked Dads Army, it was very British!

  23. douglas clark — on 8th October, 2009 at 11:22 am  

    cjcjc @ 21,

    Absolutely! Lets see money poured into these ideas. Though the last one might have global warming issues of it’s own. At least it wouldn’t be jiggering up the atmosphere…

  24. cjcjc — on 8th October, 2009 at 11:24 am  

    Or perhaps we could film the story Lehman Brothers in the style of Dad’s Army?

    Dick Fuld = Captain Mainwaring etc.

    Anyway, I now need to be excused…!

  25. Sunny — on 8th October, 2009 at 2:19 pm  

    That global cooling story is a myth. It was one article in NEwsweek – subsequently debunked

    Stop saying you’re trying to save the planet. You’re trying to save humans. There’s a big difference.

    Actually, I care a lot for the animals who will suffer as a result of extreme climate change

  26. Dave S — on 8th October, 2009 at 3:16 pm  

    cjcjc @ 21: Yes, those are interesting developments in technological research, but the point is: they don’t exist yet, and they may never work.

    I am also fascinated by human ingenuity, but I wouldn’t put all my eggs in a currently non-existent basket made out of it!

    Some key words from each item of your posting:

    1: “working on”
    2: “researching”
    3: “plans to”

    Spot the pattern? There is nothing actual, existing or current there – it’s all in the future… possibly. In the computer science world, we would call such things vapourware!

    We need something now (ideally we needed it a decade or two ago), and while you diehard techno-optimists are pinning your hopes on someone inventing the solution, humanity is well on the grotty path to extinction.

    The solutions exist now, and are easy – beginning with learning to live within our means, in harmony with our natural environment, and scaling down our lives (and consumption of energy and resources) accordingly.

    To start with, I believe we probably need to abolish most employment, and work directly to meet our own living needs – food, energy, waste treatment, clothing, entertainment, etc.

    Some things do need to be done by specialists (eg. brain surgery) but most businesses do not exist for the common good, but for the benefit of a handful of wealthy shareholders.

    Industrialism, as it currently stands, is completely unsustainable, because in order to make those shareholders wealthy, they need the quickest possible conversion of energy and natural resources into profit.

    If this continues – even if powered by some virtually “infinite” power source – humanity is finished, because the fragile systems which prop up our living environment will be completely destroyed in the pursuit of profit.

    If we are to stand any chance of surviving, most employment and industry must be abolished.

    (Perhaps we can re-examine this situation when your power sources become more than just figments of somebody’s imagination.)

    The real problem to overcome is a psychological one: people will not accept that their lives are going to change, and that they are not going to be able to continue living as they have grown accustomed to (or been told that they would be able to live “in the future”, in the case of those in the so-called “developing” world).

    No amount of technology is going to fix what is a societal, psychological problem caused by inflated expectations about how much we can each take from (and pollute) the Earth. The world’s biggest pyramid scheme is already toppling down around our ears.

    You also didn’t really answer any of my questions about nuclear power, apart from playing the “currently non-existent future technology will save us” card.

    Incidentally, I’ve been driving a flying car since at least the year 2000, and I have robot servants who do all my cooking and cleaning for me too. They’ve been out for at least nine years now – where’s yours!? ;-)

    Or could it just be that the predictions of techno-futurists usually turn out to be completely ludicrous and off by miles?

    Would you be prepared to gamble your life (literally: if you lose, you die) based on predictions made by someone you don’t even know, and who has been wrong in terms of timescale and outcome on just about everything they’ve ever forecast? Because that’s what you’re doing.

    I say this as someone with a good degree in computer science, and as a former serious technophile and gadget geek myself, now reformed: Computers have not made our lives simpler. Our lives have increased in complexity to match the technology that is available.

    It is the same with all technology, and always will be – demand (or complexity) increases to meet supply.

    Instead of “labour-saving” devices meaning that we do less work, we just do more stuff in the same amount of time, in a far less sustainable (more energy intensive) manner.

    The “technology will save us” road is utterly paved with this type of thinking, and it will not save us.

    Having said that, I actually do welcome increases in technology – but we have got to look at them in a realistic light, rather than pinning all our hopes on things which may never ever come into existence.

    We can have all the smartest scientists and technologists imaginable, and it still won’t help if we can’t learn to live within the confines of our natural environment and the laws of physics.

  27. cjcjc — on 8th October, 2009 at 3:31 pm  

    Or could it just be that the predictions of techno-futurists usually turn out to be completely ludicrous and off by miles?

    While on the other hand your prediction that we are “well on the grotty path to extinction” is obviously spot on!

  28. Dave S — on 8th October, 2009 at 3:54 pm  

    cjcjc: It’s not a prediction – it’s already happening, right now. Do try opening your eyes for a change.

    Oh, and if you’d like to answer my question on nuclear power…?

  29. cjcjc — on 8th October, 2009 at 5:02 pm  

    My eyes are open, and I see little evidence that we are “on the path to extinction”, though obviously I understand that one day the sun will die.

    I’m not sure exactly what such evidence would look like…

    “If we are to stand any chance of surviving, most employment and industry must be abolished.”

    Such language does your cause no favours.

    To survive we must return to subsistence farming?
    I’ll give up now then, thanks.

    But then, while I respect your choice and obviously know more or less nothing about you, I do find that environmentalism and narcissim go together quite often.

    Try telling that to the people of China who are only just now escaping from such a life.

    I have no “answer” on nuclear other than I am sure that technology will solve the problem, and that your millenarian scaremongering will end the same way as it has in the past.

  30. Dave S — on 8th October, 2009 at 6:11 pm  

    cjcjc: I find it odd (but certainly not a trait unique to yourself) how you’re all behind the scientists when they’re making exciting new things for you to use and promising you an amazing technological future, yet when they tell you something you don’t want to hear – which has wide-ranging catastrophic consequences for everybody – you simply ignore them.

    Take peak oil for example. Or perhaps that should be more correctly termed “peak everything” – which is essentially what we’re looking at in the next few decades.

    Unfortunately, we don’t get to cherry pick the bits of science we like, and ignore the bits we don’t like. That’s not called “optimism”, that’s called “self delusion”.

    To survive we must return to subsistence farming? I’ll give up now then, thanks.

    There have been massive advances in what you call “subsistence farming” in the last 30 or so years. Look into Permaculture and Forest Gardening for starters.

    They use well thought out design principles to eliminate most of the manual labour and wasted resources and energy from food production systems (and more ie. human settlements).

    Of course, they need to be small scale, common and varied, and are hard to industrialise for profit – which is why they haven’t taken off that much yet.

    Anyway, once such systems are up and running, the majority of the work is involved in harvesting food – apparently about 10 days a year or so per person in an established forest garden, for example.

    That leaves 355 days a year when you can do more-or-less whatever the hell you like – and who knows what creative talents you (and millions of other people) will find when unshackled from the wage slavery systems of employment?

    Employment is not only unsustainable – it is an undesirable state of affairs however you look at it, and could so easily be abolished if only you’d learn to dream a bit more.

    If perpetual wage slavery (or perhaps promotion to the boss class) really is the best life you can imagine for yourself… well, where’s your sense of optimism there!? (Are you an aristocrat already, by any chance?)

    Try telling that to the people of China who are only just now escaping from such a life.

    How about you try telling them that everything they’ve been promised for all this time is, after all, a deliberate deception which can never be attained by more than a small handful of them?

    I’m sure they’ll love that one – can’t wait!

    I have no “answer” on nuclear other than I am sure that technology will solve the problem

    Well, forgive me for demanding some proof from your “god” before subscribing to your religion – which is undeniably what this is. (Do you deny it?)

    “Industrial consumer capitalism” – the biggest religion of the 21st century! Have faith in the impossible, ye downtrodden masses! Priced only 40 hours work a week for 47 years or so of your life – get in quick while stocks last!

    and that your millenarian scaremongering will end the same way as it has in the past.

    Unfortunately not, because this time it will end with the extinction of most life on Earth, starting with the biggest and most useless parasites of all: us.

    Well, some of us, anyway.

    Let’s just give up now, eh? So we blew it – who cares!

    No, I’m afraid I’m too much of an optimist for that.

  31. Dave S — on 8th October, 2009 at 6:30 pm  

    Test comment – I just posted a reply which hasn’t come through, wondering if there’s some kind of moderation process I’m caught in? My comment had two links in it – perhaps that’s what set it off. (I’ve got a local copy of it saved anyway, so can re-post if it’s just vanished somewhere.)

    Edit: Damn, well that worked. Where’s my other comment then? :-(

  32. Dave S — on 9th October, 2009 at 12:35 pm  

    cjcjc: I find it odd (but certainly not a trait unique to yourself) how you’re all behind the scientists when they’re making exciting new things for you to use and promising you an amazing technological future, yet when they tell you something you don’t want to hear – which has wide-ranging catastrophic consequences for everybody – you simply ignore them.

    Take peak oil for example. Or perhaps that should be more correctly termed “peak everything” – which is essentially what we’re looking at in the next few decades.

    Unfortunately, we don’t get to cherry pick the bits of science we like, and ignore the bits we don’t like. That’s not called “optimism”, that’s called “self delusion”.

    To survive we must return to subsistence farming? I’ll give up now then, thanks.

    There have been massive advances in what you call “subsistence farming” in the last 30 or so years. Look into Permaculture and Forest Gardening for starters.

    They use well thought out design principles to eliminate most of the manual labour and wasted resources and energy from food production systems (and more ie. human settlements).

    Of course, they need to be small scale, common and varied, and are hard to industrialise for profit – which is why they haven’t taken off that much yet.

    Anyway, once such systems are up and running, the majority of the work is involved in harvesting food – apparently about 10 days a year or so per person in an established forest garden, for example.

    That leaves 355 days a year when you can do more-or-less whatever the hell you like – and who knows what creative talents you (and millions of other people) will find when unshackled from the wage slavery systems of employment?

    Employment is not only unsustainable – it is an undesirable state of affairs however you look at it, and could so easily be abolished if only you’d learn to dream a bit more.

    If perpetual wage slavery (or perhaps promotion to the boss class) really is the best life you can imagine for yourself… well, where’s your sense of optimism there!? (Are you an aristocrat already, by any chance?)

    Try telling that to the people of China who are only just now escaping from such a life.

    How about you try telling them that everything they’ve been promised for all this time is, after all, a deliberate deception which can never be attained by more than a small handful of them?

    I’m sure they’ll love that one – can’t wait!

    I have no “answer” on nuclear other than I am sure that technology will solve the problem

    Well, forgive me for demanding some proof from your “god” before subscribing to your religion – which is undeniably what this is. (Do you deny it?)

    “Industrial consumer capitalism” – the biggest religion of the 21st century! Have faith in the impossible, ye downtrodden masses! Priced only 40 hours work a week for 47 years or so of your life – get in quick while stocks last!

    and that your millenarian scaremongering will end the same way as it has in the past.

    Unfortunately not, because this time it will end with the extinction of most life on Earth, starting with the biggest and most useless parasites of all: us.

    Well, some of us, anyway.

    Let’s just give up now, eh? So we blew it – who cares!

    No, I’m afraid I’m too much of an optimist for that.

  33. Dave S — on 9th October, 2009 at 3:34 pm  

    (Third time I’m trying to post this since yesterday – have removed my links to see if that changes anything. Seems if you have two links in your posting, your comment gets flagged up as spam.)

    cjcjc: I find it odd (but certainly not a trait unique to yourself) how you’re all behind the scientists when they’re making exciting new things for you to use and promising you an amazing technological future, yet when they tell you something you don’t want to hear – which has wide-ranging catastrophic consequences for everybody – you simply ignore them.

    Take peak oil for example. Or perhaps that should be more correctly termed “peak everything” – which is essentially what we’re looking at in the next few decades.

    Unfortunately, we don’t get to cherry pick the bits of science we like, and ignore the bits we don’t like. That’s not called “optimism”, that’s called “self delusion”.

    To survive we must return to subsistence farming? I’ll give up now then, thanks.

    There have been massive advances in what you call “subsistence farming” in the last 30 or so years. Look into Permaculture and Forest Gardening for starters. (Those two were originally links that I’ve now removed, as I think they might have lost my comment to the spam queue or something.)

    They use well thought out design principles to eliminate most of the manual labour and wasted resources and energy from food production systems (and more ie. human settlements).

    Of course, they need to be small scale, common and varied, and are hard to industrialise for profit – which is why they haven’t taken off that much yet.

    Anyway, once such systems are up and running, the majority of the work is involved in harvesting food – apparently about 10 days a year or so per person in an established forest garden, for example.

    That leaves 355 days a year when you can do more-or-less whatever the hell you like – and who knows what creative talents you (and millions of other people) will find when unshackled from the wage slavery systems of employment?

    Employment is not only unsustainable – it is an undesirable state of affairs however you look at it, and could so easily be abolished if only you’d learn to dream a bit more.

    If perpetual wage slavery (or perhaps promotion to the boss class) really is the best life you can imagine for yourself… well, where’s your sense of optimism there!? (Are you an aristocrat already, by any chance?)

    Try telling that to the people of China who are only just now escaping from such a life.

    How about you try telling them that everything they’ve been promised for all this time is, after all, a deliberate deception which can never be attained by more than a small handful of them?

    I’m sure they’ll love that one – can’t wait!

    I have no “answer” on nuclear other than I am sure that technology will solve the problem

    Well, forgive me for demanding some proof from your “god” before subscribing to your religion – which is undeniably what this is. (Do you deny it?)

    “Industrial consumer capitalism” – the biggest religion of the 21st century! Have faith in the impossible, ye downtrodden masses! Priced only 40 hours work a week for 47 years or so of your life – get in quick while stocks last!

    and that your millenarian scaremongering will end the same way as it has in the past.

    Unfortunately not, because this time it will end with the extinction of most life on Earth, starting with the biggest and most useless parasites of all: us.

    Well, some of us, anyway.

    Let’s just give up now, eh? So we blew it – who cares!

    No, I’m afraid I’m too much of an optimist for that.

  34. Dave S — on 9th October, 2009 at 3:35 pm  

    (Fourth time I’m trying to post this since yesterday – have removed my links to see if that changes anything. Seems if you have two links in your posting, your comment gets flagged up as spam, although I’m now being repeatedly flagged as spam anyway!?)

    cjcjc: I find it odd (but certainly not a trait unique to yourself) how you’re all behind the scientists when they’re making exciting new things for you to use and promising you an amazing technological future, yet when they tell you something you don’t want to hear – which has wide-ranging catastrophic consequences for everybody – you simply ignore them.

    Take peak oil for example. Or perhaps that should be more correctly termed “peak everything” – which is essentially what we’re looking at in the next few decades.

    Unfortunately, we don’t get to cherry pick the bits of science we like, and ignore the bits we don’t like. That’s not called “optimism”, that’s called “self delusion”.

    To survive we must return to subsistence farming? I’ll give up now then, thanks.

    There have been massive advances in what you call “subsistence farming” in the last 30 or so years. Look into Permaculture and Forest Gardening for starters. (Those two were originally links that I’ve now removed, as I think they might have lost my comment to the spam queue or something.)

    They use well thought out design principles to eliminate most of the manual labour and wasted resources and energy from food production systems (and more ie. human settlements).

    Of course, they need to be small scale, common and varied, and are hard to industrialise for profit – which is why they haven’t taken off that much yet.

    Anyway, once such systems are up and running, the majority of the work is involved in harvesting food – apparently about 10 days a year or so per person in an established forest garden, for example.

    That leaves 355 days a year when you can do more-or-less whatever the hell you like – and who knows what creative talents you (and millions of other people) will find when unshackled from the wage slavery systems of employment?

    Employment is not only unsustainable – it is an undesirable state of affairs however you look at it, and could so easily be abolished if only you’d learn to dream a bit more.

    If perpetual wage slavery (or perhaps promotion to the boss class) really is the best life you can imagine for yourself… well, where’s your sense of optimism there!? (Are you an aristocrat already, by any chance?)

    Try telling that to the people of China who are only just now escaping from such a life.

    How about you try telling them that everything they’ve been promised for all this time is, after all, a deliberate deception which can never be attained by more than a small handful of them?

    I’m sure they’ll love that one – can’t wait!

    I have no “answer” on nuclear other than I am sure that technology will solve the problem

    Well, forgive me for demanding some proof from your “god” before subscribing to your religion – which is undeniably what this is. (Do you deny it?)

    “Industrial consumer capitalism” – the biggest religion of the 21st century! Have faith in the impossible, ye downtrodden masses! Priced only 40 hours work a week for 47 years or so of your life – get in quick while stocks last!

    and that your millenarian scaremongering will end the same way as it has in the past.

    Unfortunately not, because this time it will end with the extinction of most life on Earth, starting with the biggest and most useless parasites of all: us.

    Well, some of us, anyway.

    Let’s just give up now, eh? So we blew it – who cares!

    No, I’m afraid I’m too much of an optimist for that.

  35. Dave S — on 9th October, 2009 at 10:20 pm  

    Oh damn, sorry for the multiple posting people – guess it’s finally cleared the spam queue several times over!

Sorry, the comment form is closed at this time.

Pickled Politics © Copyright 2005 - 2010. All rights reserved. Terms and conditions.
With the help of PHP and Wordpress.