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Distant Observer

Ah, for once I must tell you you're wrong and singing the song of those you so well criticize. Let's begin with this tidbit:

"For humankind, environmental concerns are a luxury they can afford when the economy is doing well."

Except when the economy is doing well, they say addressing environmental issue would slow and hurt the economy so we can't deal with it then, either. In short, the environment is a "luxury we can't afford", period.

Then you inform us, "There's at least 1.6°C of warming in the pipeline, so to speak, and to halt any increases in atmospheric CO2, or limit them to 430 ppmv (to pick a target), humanity would have to tear down industrial civilization."

Guess what ecological collapse will do? And it won't limit itself to industrial civilization.

The great failure of the self-professed intelligent species is the inability to recognize real wealth. We confuse the abstract, represented by numbers and bits of data as being wealth, when, in fact, all wealth, from the very essential piece of property we all own, as recognized by John Locke, ouer very bodies, comes from the Earth. Our skin, hair, muscle, food, water, air, clothes, homes, cars, roads, etc, etc, etc ... is all dependent on a functioning and sustainable biosphere. Separating economy from ecology is the stupidest, most ignorant, and ultimately suicidal achievement of the self=professed intelligent species.

Sit back, relax, and enjoy the collapse.

Dave Cohen

Distant Observer --

Re: ecological collapse

Thanks for telling us the obvious. And although I have written about such collapse (e.g. in the oceans) many, many times, it seems that unless it comes from YOU, we are all ill-informed.

Why don't you poll humankind to determine whether they should 1) stop economic growth OR 2) continue business-as-usual.

Let me know what you find out. Schmuck.

-- Dave


Aw, Dave, and here I am packing up this morning for DC, and arrest tomorrow. I have friends from Boston on their way to pick me up in their car because we can't take Amtrak, it's still not running from here to Philly.

True, we have misgivings, because it IS pointless. But futile gestures are all that's left to us...and I've always wanted to be a criminal! I have an email correspondent whom I've never met, I don't think she'll mind if I quote her savagely funny message to me today:

Now what? What do you or the tar sands people plan to do...after the arrests....and most important, after the pipeline is approved?
Do you have a strategy? Don't you think it is a good idea to plan long-term? What other things besides direct action are planned, if any? I havent seen anything along these lines yet, I havent seen any unified energy policy, and all I see are religious wusses like McKibben preaching "action". Are you one of his acolytes who think he is the best thing since sliced bread? (or since tall lattes)? Havent you figured out that he has no political strategy at all, no plans, no platform? That he is actually hindering and DELAYING the formation of a strong uncompromising unified movement? How long will it take for you to see that you are wasting your own valuable time, when you could be organizing productively?

What is the "growing movement" you refer to? More people gathering around McKibben waiting for his blessing?


"I have written about such collapse (e.g. in the oceans) many, many times . . ."

Don't be challenging, Dave . . . he is T-H-E M-A-N!!!

Tell him like it is!

Dave Cohen

Have fun at the protest, Gail! I admire futile gestures, but only when those making them know they are futile.

And give us a report on going to jail!

Re: McKibben

Yes, a Christian wuss. God Only Knows how he's got things figured out. Literally! Honestly, I can't abide that man.

But then again, I think the Prince of Darkness runs this world...

-- Dave

John D

Gail- you go girl! Rage against the machine!


Cohen said: "But then again, I think the Prince of Darkness runs this world..."

As time passes, this phrase becomes even more solidified in my mind. Only Satan would want to spread toxic depleted uranium(with a half life of 4.5 billion years) all over the planet:

Uranio 238

Part 1:
Part 2:
Part 3:
Part 4:

Why there has been no official study on the health and environmental effects of DU:

william mcdonald

Good thing the protesters aren't out here in Kalfornia.

I seem to remember watching video of a gloved deputy applying full strength pepper spray directly to the eyeballs of a few some years ago.

Barbaric but effective.

I am not approving it, just pointing out that peaceful protest in the empire today carries some risks.

Tony Weddle

I'm not sure what Dave and Distant Observer have to argue about. It seems you're both on the same page. Is this what collapse looks like, people with the same views arguing with each other?

I sympathise with Distant Observer, actually. Although I know Dave completely understands the predicament of the planet, not just the US, his posts often slip in a phrase like "we should have done that 30 years ago" which kind of implies that doing X a while ago would have done the trick. I know he doesn't think that so I don't know why he says it. Yes, ecological degradation will do for us, regardless of the level of CO2 but maybe 350 ppmv is the safest level. We know so little about feedbacks that stopping emissions now (which is impossible) would only make things slightly less bad.

In one sense, blogs like these (in fact, all blogs) are pointless given that there is no chance whatsoever of humanity waking up (in a phased way as the earth spins) one day and thinking, "shit, we've really fucked this up, let's do something completely different". Consequently, a slow (at least) grinding collapse is inevitable, regardless of what McKibben or Cohen says to try to wake a few people up.


Well, this party sure turned to shit. Pass me another shot, or turn on hopey changey to inspire me.

Back in the day, the young would have stood up. Where are they? Old man Hanson protesting. Bet that scares Inhofe and Perry.

Robert Colgan

A drug person can learn to cope with things like seeing their dead grandmother crawling up their leg with a knife in her teeth. But no one should be asked to handle this trip.

There was only one road back to L.A. - U.S. Interstate 15. Just a flat-out high speed burn through Baker and Barstow and Berdoo. Then onto the Hollywood Freeway, and straight on into frantic oblivion. Safety. Obscurity. Just another freak, in the freak kingdom.
(Raoul Duke)

Dr. C

Hey, this is Dave's blog and he can post whatever he wants here. Even if he does come off from time to time sounding like he wrote the column while fighting an urgent need to go take a piss.

Distant Observer

Wow. Dave is an asshole. Who knew?


I agree with Dave that there is nothing that can - or will - be done until the collapse is in full swing. Whether it is economic collapse or environmental. My only hope is that a severe economical collapse will slow the environmental one.

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