What is the global political-economy (i.e. us, we, society) going to do about “the way we are heading”? The most likely scenario is that we are going to collapse. See the paper http://www.lifeworth.com/deepadaptation.pdf by Jem Bendell concluding the following after an exhaustive review of the most up-to-date findings about climate change: “inevitable collapse, probable catastrophe and possible extinction.”
See also https://jembendell.wordpress.com and https://www.resilience.org/stories/2019-03-17/deep-adaptation-post-sustainability-and-the-possibility-of-societal-collapse/
Note well: one can accept the reality of (1) a present social order which will never escape from the nature of its structure being a progress trap and (2) near term social collapse due to rapid climate disruption (aka climate chaos, climate tragedy) without being a fatalistic true believer in near term human extinction.
“George Orwell once talked about his ability to face unpleasant facts, and that’s always inspired me. I want to look at the things that are happening in the world that we may not want to think about and try to really understand them” (Roy Scranton).
“Don’t confuse me with those who cling to hope. I enjoy describing how things are, I have no interest in how they ought to be. And I certainly have no interest in fixing them. I sincerely believe that if you think there’s a solution, you’re part of the problem” (George Carlin).
“The meanings of life aren’t inherited. What is inherited is the mandate to make meanings of life by how we live. The endings of life give life’s meanings a chance to show. The beginning of the end of our order, our way, is now in view. This isn’t punishment, any more than dying is a punishment for being born.”―Stephen Jenkinson
I wish I had come across this back in July of 2018 instead of March 2019. Eight months late isn’t too bad being less than a full term human pregnancy.
A research paper concluding that climate-induced collapse is now inevitable, was recently rejected by anonymous reviewers of an academic journal.
It has been released directly by the Professor who wrote it, to promote discussion of the necessary deep adaptation to climate chaos.
“I am releasing this paper immediately, directly, because I can’t wait any longer in exploring how to learn the implications of the social collapse we now face,” explained the author Dr Bendell, a full Professor of Sustainability Leadership.
In saying the paper was not suitable for publication, one of the comments from the reviewers questioned the emotional impact that the paper might have on readers. “I was left wondering about the social implications of presenting a scenario for the future as inevitable reality, and about the responsibility of research in communicating climate change scenarios and strategies for adaptation.” wrote one of the reviewers. “As the authors pointed…
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By Jem Bendell and Katie Carr
Many more people are waking up to the predicament we are in, where rapid climate change threatens the future of our societies – and even our species. Hundreds of thousands of people have downloaded the Deep Adaptation paper and thousands joined the Facebook group. Launching the Deep Adaptation Forum is one means of enabling that interest to become useful collaboration.
As people begin to work with our colleagues and discuss what “Deep Adaptation” could mean (and what it doesn’t), we wish to clarify some core ideas that have been expressed in more detail elsewhere.
Deep Adaptation refers to the personal and collective changes that might help us to prepare for – and live with – a climate-induced collapse of our societies. Unlike mainstream work on adaptation to climate change, it doesn’t assume that our current economic, social, and political systems can be resilient…
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The Professor Becomes What He Always Was
Most of Chomsky’s shortcomings have been present from the beginning. He has long had the tendency to issue searing condemnations of American imperialism while damning its most demonized victims in even more totalizing terms. So despite conceding that Soviet “imperialism” was more benign than the American version, for instance, he nevertheless concurs with Ronald Reagan that “the ‘Evil Empire’ was in fact evil, was an empire and was brutal.” Despite acknowledging that America imperialism’s impact on the world has been more malignant, he nevertheless does not damn America as “evil.”
In another interview, he enumerated over the course of thousands of words some of America’s worst crimes from the past and present, yet concluded that it was actually North Korea which was probably “the most dangerous, craziest…
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The Left gets Hoped and Changed
One of the more insidious aspects of contemporary American mass culture is how it is celebrated as something so progressive at a time when it is more reactionary than at any point in living memory. Look at the spectacle around Black Panther from last year—a film that features a black hero teaming up with the CIA to kill African radicals. Black representation on film is actually much worse than it was 20 years ago, although we’re told it’s becoming better than ever. In the early 1990s, it was probably more common to see movies and TV shows with mostly African-American talent in front of and behind the camera. More importantly, the messages were mostly better, too. In New Jack City, for one, the villain, a drug lord played by Wesley Snipes, even explains that he’s…
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America’s Greatest Dissident
All of this is crucial context because Chomsky’s defenders compare him favorably to Fox News cretins and State Department snakes. But this is not a useful analytical comparison because Chomsky was not intended to supplant Bill O’Reilly and Madeleine Albright, which is why he never replaced those people in the propaganda system of which he is a part. Those whom MIT hired him to replace were all those movement leaders, thinkers, and revolutionaries who were more substantively radical than him, which is why he did replace those people.
Chomsky has enjoyed a sinecure at one of America’s wealthiest and most Pentagon-connected universities because he steers people away from all the more radical ideas mentioned above, ideas which once defined the intellectual substance of “the Left.” In 1972, if someone had wandered into a GI café, SNCC meeting, or Panther safehouse and claimed that…
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Noam Chomsky recently took to the pages of The Intercept to give his blessing to the US military’s occupation of Syria, solidifying his support for the Pentagon after years of having done so in slightly more anguished terms. As far as the occupation, the only concession to what might once have been considered “Leftist” values is the MIT professor’s acknowledgement that the US is motivated by “power considerations” rather than “humanitarian objectives.” Today, the brief nod to realpolitik is what’s supposed to pass for a progressive anti-war stance.
The Intercept is really a natural fit for Chomsky to deliver this message. The nonagenarian professor has limited years left on earth, and when he passes, Glenn Greenwald and Pierre Omidyar’s website will probably become the new face of the permissible Left. That Chomsky lends his radical imprimatur to a US military occupation in its pages is a testament to…
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