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Women continue to have babies after men continue to make them pregnant.
Yes, the power structure must go, but not necessarily the EU. The world view of the power structure –“Let’s put our own power and profit before people and ecosystems” –must go. And will go. But it would be handy to keep what is useful (social institutions are hard to build), install radical transparency, let the banks fail, substitute well-managed public finance, and get on with cooling the planet –the Green New Deal.
Ballooning debt resulted in jacked up commodity prices –for a while –until the shrinking income of the mass of people made things unaffordable. So the debt-based apotheosis of capitalism on the backs of exploited workers comes to a slowing down time.
Slow growth is, of course, good! Is it a Gaia feedback loop in favor of dynamic equilibrium? I wonder because the global economy still has plenty of oil. Energy has even become pretty cheap. No shortage of finance to say the least. Population mushrooming still. Extreme poverty lifted en masse in developing regions. ZIRP rates. Stability overall. But growth is slowing. The result of an unknowably complex combination of factors? But trending in the right direction.
I have heard Varoufakis say “investments in green technology not 4-wheel drive cars,” indicating that he means a different kind of growth substituting for the kind of growth we have had. If there is any kind of growth coming up, it must be by means of substitutions in the end products created, to be not petroleum-dependent in either their material make-up or in their necessary processes. Of course this means huge disruptions in how people are employed, or not. The structures planned in Yanis’ New Deal will be essential to smooth a sane social path to really new ways of living, both materially and socially. Fossil fuel-based growth is over, but there may yet emerge a different kind of growth.
We got plenty going to kill us with or without ‘sustainable development.’ The UN Global Goals are common sense. They are only ‘impossibly ambitious’ from the point of view of those powers which have made global society incredibly unfair and inhumane. It was one thing 40 or 50 years ago when much of the globe was the Third World. Now, within an increasingly wealthy global polity, ignoring human nurturance stands out as a deliberate choice. No, profit per se won’t be made in the aggregate from the installation of global sustainability infrastructures. There’s a choice to be made between militaries paying people to kill each other (already happening, profit involved) or governments/NGOs paying people to plant trees across the Sahel, et al, no profit involved. Many thousands of semi-permanent Black Rock Cities (Burning Man) will need to be built. Abundant human resources, surplus to the present system, are badly needed to sequester carbon in soils and new forests across the globe as they set up new climate-adaptive survival systems. Any initiatives pointing in that direction are useful, especially compared to doing nothing.
Those defending the nation-state against global finance and neoliberalism are smoking something? Well, yes, they are not talking mainstream. They are the new decentralists. I agree with Mody: a smaller banking sector, a lower pound, and a more reasonable housing market are all pluses for the British local economy and the people who live in it, people who are being crushed by the globe-trotters. Nations, regions, municipalities, need to rise up. They are newly learning they have real power, and need lots of discourse on how best to use it.
A passionate post which has stirred up the comments. I fully concur with the sentiments expressed in this heartsick blog. But I don’t see how it is in the power of most people to stop destroying nature as Ilargi angrily insists. One would have to begin living as indigenous peoples have lived, hunting, fishing and gathering with the support of a tribe of others, using no industrial products such as a rifle.
I grow food for myself and others and live close to town so rarely use my car. Even so one day I was horrified to find dead wildlife among my things. A mouse had drowned in a glass jar holding rainwater because it couldn’t get a grip to get itself out. A lizard had gotten stuck on a piece of adhesive tape attached to some cardboard I was saving for garden mulch. They had died horribly and I was responsible. So don’t have glass jars or recycle cardboard?
Things were different when human population was smaller and dwarfed by Nature. Now my only comfort is knowing there will be a human die-back. Still inwardly I rebel against the bumper-sticker directive: “Save the Planet Kill Yourself” We were born here and belong here too. We’ll either learn how to live here or die off like our co-inhabitants.
Sorry to see hatred of Hillary Clinton expressed with such energy on this site. She’s just not that bad. She is, however, a female about to win the highest post on the planet.
Thanks for opening my eyes about the significance of negative rates and the war on cash. It sounds ominous to me; but I can see it seems to solve a lot of problems from the point of view of the financial elites. Let’s hope it cannot be implemented. In a contraction the center cannot hold? This could be a way for that center to keep its grip on skimming ever more from the population to pay for their repressive strategy. For while the necessary infrastructure remains intact enough.