Too Late for Hopium

Despair is the loss of the assumption that the species will inevitably pull through. It represents a genuine accession to the possibility that this planetary experiment will end, the curtain rung down, the show over.

~Joanna Macy~

We are all being led to slaughter.

The denial is deafening. No one wants to listen or learn about it, but our life on earth is clearly terminal. All data point to the likelihood of human extinction in a couple decades, by 2030. It will be brought about by the notion that civilizations only get better and there are no consequences to progress. We ratchet up climate change and extinction every day by our activities, our, consumption and our demand for growth. 

Evolution by natural selection forces us into the flight or fight behavior that pushes us toward short-term survival and procreation. These are low standards, and once they are achieved, we think we all  turn to the acquisition of more and more material goods, power, and prestige, the need for newest best technology. Corporate governments all say everyone needs more. But they never mention about the costs of “more.”

It’s extremely disconcerting to read the essay,  We’re Done.

Guy McPherson’s eponymous website.

And then there’s his Transition Voice blog as well.

Here you have the raw truth of the fact that we’ve passed the point of no return. Extinction will be more rapid in the northern hemisphere because the proportion of land to water is greater and land heats up more quickly than water. But we have a moral imperative to live differently than the way we’re living today. We must radicalize so that in the end we will have more species populating the planet so there will be some basis for life on earth in the distant future.

This is not a historical prophecy, rather, McPherson’s is a forecast deeply rooted in the data. We have triggered 10 self-reinforcing feedback loops on the climate change front, and nine of these are irreversible. The forecast is that there will be no ice in the Arctic in September, 2013. The last time that happened was at least 3-5 million years ago. This changes everything. The Arctic is the AC of the planet. Without ice in the Arctic, there will be little reflective and more absorptive qualities of the sun’s  heat. An ice-free Arctic will have profound implications on the planet. We are killing the living planet we depend on for our survival.

No one will discuss this. There is very little evidence that more than 100 people on the planet are discussing this, let alone doing anything about it. No one is tweeting this, no one is viewing McPherson’s YouTube videos. Only a handful of regular visitors on his website dominate the comments. This could all be little more than disaster porn.

NTE = Near-Term Human Extinction. This is the real Apocalypse. This is the real “2012.”  We cannot turn this thing around now.

Too many people demanding too much stuff is at the core of the problem. We would need 4-5 more earths to grow at the rate industrial societies are growing now. No one in leadership roles will ever suggest we burn less carbon because economic growth is correlated with burning more carbon. The notion of dealing with population, climate change, or cancer clusters is politically unviable and politicians only think about getting re-elected.

We are absolutely invested in the idea that economic growth is our “right.” We have to let go of these assumptions or be dragged. We have to live as though the end was already here. We have to stop buying into the drone-like existence we lead and instead to think critically. We have to follow our  heart because we’ve been following our head for far too long. Pursue anything outside of mainstream, if only for the sake of having a set of worthwhile life experiences.

Most people show no evidence of loving the natural world, the very thing we depend on for our survival. What is the meaning and purpose of your life? Few people ask these questions.

Global Warming Forecasts 2015-2090

The Sixth Extinction

The Sixth Great Extinction: Beyond Transition, The Long Emergency, And The Great Turning, By Carolyn Baker

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One thought on “Too Late for Hopium

  1. Pingback: That Black-Eyed Dog at My Door Part 1 « Heart of Glass

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