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The Stark Realities of Baked-In Catastrophes

Re: The Stark Realities of Baked-In Catastrophes

Unread postby dohboi » Mon 19 Jun 2017, 17:22:05

"It is an extremely naive article that wants to reduce the origin of the problems to a couple of evil players..."

It may be naive...not sure what not being naive would look like though (unless it just means agreeing with Ibon all the time :-D :-D :-D )

But as to "reducing the origin of the problem" you seem to have missed the part where he said the very first act everyone should do is to adopt a plant-based diet.

That sounds pretty strongly like he is saying that we have to start with personal responsibility, to me.
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Re: The Stark Realities of Baked-In Catastrophes

Unread postby onlooker » Mon 19 Jun 2017, 17:36:34

In the end you are right Ibon. It is simply that what is happening is so frustrating to those of us thinking of these things. The problem is US. So can we humanely eliminate a few billion? Well, the cessation of Industrial civilization would probably, though probably not humanely do it. Otherwise, wait for starvation and disease. I am out of even suggestions. Just seems that nobody has a true solution.
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Re: The Stark Realities of Baked-In Catastrophes

Unread postby Ibon » Mon 19 Jun 2017, 17:36:46

dohboi wrote:you seem to have missed the part where he said the very first act everyone should do is to adopt a plant-based diet.


How are you going to take down the fossil fuel industry and eliminate corrupt governments eating leaves?

Joking aside, let's look at that articles reference:

And meat, dairy and egg producers, responding to consumer demand, are responsible for the emission of more greenhouse gases than the entire global transportation sector.


So the consumers demanding this are not responsible? Just the producers?
Don't you think personal responsibility has to address those that are doing the consuming?

It's a holier than thou piece of crap article. Sorry.

By the way, Ibon does not have any solution.
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Re: The Stark Realities of Baked-In Catastrophes

Unread postby dohboi » Mon 19 Jun 2017, 18:18:30

"... consumers demanding this are not responsible? Not the producers?"

?????

Wow. I guess what we have here is a failure to communicate.

That's exactly why he is saying the first (but of course not the last) thing to do is to withdraw your support for these industries by not buying and consuming them.

I get the feeling that here you are trying really hard not to understand, and are instead just looking for cheap (and ignorant) chances to get snarky...more like something sparky or some other troll would do than the old Ibon we all know and love. :-D :-D

So anyway, I'll leave it there for now unless you decide to recover your old reasonable, reflective and respectful self. Chow. :) :)
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Re: The Stark Realities of Baked-In Catastrophes

Unread postby Ibon » Tue 20 Jun 2017, 07:11:27

dohboi wrote:So anyway, I'll leave it there for now unless you decide to recover your old reasonable, reflective and respectful self. Chow. :) :)


Yes I admit to being a bit snarky and pissed yesterday when I posted. Sorry

The entire juggernaut of humanity moves day to day in addressing immediate needs. Yes as individuals there is a lot we can do but you have to be sanguine about the fact that there is only a minute percentage of individuals out there willing to prioritize their assets and lifestyles dedicating this to the care of mother earth.

Altering the institutional asset inertia?? The article concludes this needs to be militantly dismantled. At this moment the fossil fuel industry is the feedstock for an entire energy infrastructure that supports a vast percentage of humanity on the planet. Any alternative requires generations to implement which requires both physical infrastructure and cultural change. It just isn't a simple problem of the fossil fuel industry blocking change. The article claims it is.

Furthermore, go ahead and entertain the actions proposed by the article and actually imagine the police state's reaction to any militant attempt at dismantling the current infrastructure. This is totally ridiculous. Leaf eating environmentalists up against a military police state ? Really. This article is down right stupid. It's main purpose is to air frustration but there is zero concrete and useful about it.

This gets to an important point to consider when you peruse all the political articles addressing climate change and environmental issues. All so often they are written to discharge frustration. Lofty words and lofty ideals expressed but with very very little concrete content. This serves to discharge frustration but has not traction. Sometimes I think these articles are clever devices for folks to align with as if this really is doing something about the issue. It is a temporary place to park your high ideals for a brief moment before going back to your normal kudzu ape behavior. It's a device and nothing more. Saccharine.
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Re: The Stark Realities of Baked-In Catastrophes

Unread postby Ibon » Tue 20 Jun 2017, 07:55:09

onlooker wrote:Otherwise, wait for starvation and disease. I am out of even suggestions. Just seems that nobody has a true solution.


Standing witness day by day knowing there is nothing really one can do is frustrating. Which really underscores that the only thing you have control of is your response to that which is beyond your control.

I am not religious but there is profound wisdom in this simple passage

God grant me the serenity
to accept the things I cannot change;
courage to change the things I can;
and wisdom to know the difference.
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Re: The Stark Realities of Baked-In Catastrophes

Unread postby dohboi » Tue 20 Jun 2017, 08:16:04

"Leaf eating environmentalists up against a military police state ? "

Is that a bit of leftover snark from yesterday...maybe a snark hangover?? :-D :-D

If your implication is that peaceful movements have never been able to influence or overturn heavily militarized regimes, well, I can propose many books you could read about many counter examples.

Because you can't imagine it doesn't mean it couldn't or hasn't happened.

I do agree that the article is rabble rousing. But shouldn't somebody be rousing some rabble? :)

I thinks it's fine to just be philosophical about our multiple predicaments (as long as one is not also doing a lot to exacerbate the situation). But I don't think it's an 'illegitimate' response to the situation to 'rage, rage against the dying of the light' (to quote Dylan Thomas). That's what Hedges is doing here, and has been doing for a while. I am perhaps more willing to allow him such rage, since he has also produced incredibly nuanced and thoughtful reflections on war, psychology and power in such award-winning books as " War Is a Force That Gives Us Meaning" which I think you would find quite interesting (recommended to me by one of my more conservative friends, by the way).
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Re: The Stark Realities of Baked-In Catastrophes

Unread postby Ibon » Tue 20 Jun 2017, 09:27:03

dohboi wrote:
If your implication is that peaceful movements have never been able to influence or overturn heavily militarized regimes, well, I can propose many books you could read about many counter examples.


I do think it will be a peaceful movement in the end that will be the most effective. But this article is anything but that. It is promoting militancy. When consequences eventually ravage I sincerely believe we will see a significant percentage of the population embrace with compassion the dire straights. In other words, hardships through consequences will awaken in some a compassionate response.... both toward our suffering biosphere and humanity. Think about this a minute. The greatest force to return humanity into the fold of nature is when consequences create damaging impacts to both simultaneously. This is how consequences unify. It's not happening yet because the status quo is still unbelievably resilient and the disenfranchised are still marginalized. But this more spiritual response will happen in a sea of primitive responses among the vast majority. The primitive and sacred will be deeply interwoven. Greed will not subside peacefully. I can't help but forecast long term some very disturbing and disruptive social impacts but I think history has also shown that what can emerge from the rubble of turmoil can be enlightenment.

he has also produced incredibly nuanced and thoughtful reflections on war, psychology and power in such award-winning books as " War Is a Force That Gives Us Meaning" which I think you would find quite interesting (recommended to me by one of my more conservative friends, by the way).


Thanks. I will seriously consider reading this and let you know

The leaf eating environmentalist is not meant to be snarky but rather humorous. The idea of earnest virtuous environmentalists seriously confronting the hardware of the police state in trying to dismantle the fossil fuel industry is a David and Goliath story that would not have a happy ending. That parable never considered drones that can kill.
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Re: The Stark Realities of Baked-In Catastrophes

Unread postby KaiserJeep » Tue 20 Jun 2017, 09:49:45

I have been reading with amusement these angst-filled ravings. Nothing new here that we have not said before, but this thread is worthwhile because it integrates all the needed concepts into one versus several threads in several diverse forums.

51% of the human-caused greenhouse gases emitted into the atmosphere do indeed come from our livestock, and feeding grain to the food animals does multiply the gastric methane emissions, and methane is indeed about 80X as effective at trapping solar heat than is carbon dioxide. Actually 269X as effective on a ton-for-ton basis, but it also disassociates quicker, so the net impact is about 80X. I have recently began to realize that as I move from the urban human warrens of California to the bucolic dairylands of Wisconsin, that I will be moving into an area that is intensively farmed and thus is a leading producer of GHG's, in fact one of the most intense emitters in all the world. I adjusted to this, when online house-hunting I learned to zoom out the overhead satellite view, and to recognize the manure-rotting fields of huge corporate dairy farms and the overhead appearance of the row houses used for production of chickens and eggs.

My solution is the same one that I have been advocating for years, to your derision. I am hoping that you have now come to realize that there simply is no saving of the planet we live on and it's already sick and rapidly getting sicker ecosystem. However, our technology may yet save us in one of several ways, a couple of which I will share.

It would be nice if every human on the planet had the fine sensibilities and regard for the welfare of all other species as do the peakoil.com members. Certainly our musings have taken us to some dark places and equally dark conclusions. But the darkest of all these thoughts is this one: however well WE understand our eventual fate and it's causes, most of the First World and just about all of the Second World and Third World never will, and as a result those positive environmental changes that might save us are few and feeble - and the planetary ecosystem will therefore sustain continued and accelerating damage from the surfeit of Humans, aka Kudzu Apes. Most of those apes are going to die, without it ever entering their heads that there was something that could be done to help their fate - indeed, never even realizing that alternatives existed. We as a species are probably going extinct. We will persist for a few more human generations but our fate is actually already sealed, by our ape natures, and the certain knowledge that the average human already struggles to survive and therefore will never be making informed choices about what to eat and how to live for the good of the human race and the other species.

One alternative is one that I have presented many times and that almost all of you have rejected out of hand. I won't belabor it here, I'll simply note that for some few apes, leaving the surface of the planet and choosing to live in space where living space and energy and materials resources are effectively unlimited is a rational and viable alternative. But you say, only a very few can be saved that way. YES, I say, but that is better for humans than perishing en masse. But even Elon Musk has the same failure of imagination that hobbles most of you: he thinks that colonizing other planets is the answer, when it's simply much more practical to build colonies in space. There - done with alternative survival scenario #1, which is viable but does not save 99% of the apes or the planetary ecosystem.

Alternative survival scenario #2 is in fact very scary. I have spent many posts and many hours explaining my understanding of man as an ape, hobbled with ape instincts and emotions and - in the absence of widespread extensive education - having no resources to overide and overcome our limitations as the most self-aware of the apes. It is now possible to overcome these conceptual limitations, because recent technological innovations in genetic engineering have made it possible to edit the human genome almost as easily as we edit text. I'm not going to debate this topic with you, because frankly most of you are out of date when it comes to capabilities and methods in this regard. If you want to become current, then search out and read about the CRISPR technique. I am a lifelong fan of both electronics and science fiction, this technique of gene editing - presently being used to edit genetic diseases from human parents - I believe is just as significant as the transistor - the late 1940's invention at Bell Labs that was the enabler of our digital world. But it's a real and current capability and it is already being used to modify the species we call Kudzu Ape.

https://www.theguardian.com/books/2017/jun/17/a-crack-in-creation-by-jennifer-doudna-and-samuel-sternberg-review

IMHO, CRISPR is even more certain to change humans than the ongoing hybridization with digital devices. Both of these things are changing the very nature of the human species in the present, without most of you thinking about either one, let alone both.

Later this week, I'll start a seperate thread on CRISPR, after the concept has sunk in. Meanwhile, for those of you who realize early on that this technique exists and is already being used, I'll offer this:

https://www.amazon.com/Abolition-Man-C-S-Lewis/dp/1609421477/ref=tmm_pap_swatch_0?_encoding=UTF8&qid=&sr=
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Re: The Stark Realities of Baked-In Catastrophes

Unread postby onlooker » Tue 20 Jun 2017, 10:15:04

We will persist for a few more human generations but our fate is actually already sealed, by our ape natures, and the certain knowledge that the average human already struggles to survive and therefore will never be making informed choices about what to eat and how to live for the good of the human race and the other species.---I agree, that our fate may be sealed, But NOT for the lack of knowledge or our ape traits, but simply because of the unfortunate adoption of an energy source capable of being so rich energy wise and capable of disrupting the climate system so much. You can thus make the argument that our "intelligence " ultimately betrayed us. Alas, only time will tell if this planet after all this assault, will still remain capable of supporting any of us or other current higher life forms into the more distant future
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Re: The Stark Realities of Baked-In Catastrophes

Unread postby Ibon » Tue 20 Jun 2017, 12:12:55

KaiserJeep wrote: If you want to become current, then search out and read about the CRISPR technique. [/url]


From the article you posted

And there has never been a better example of the unforeseen benefits of pure research because no one guessed that a technique of such power and universality would emerge from what appeared to be a fascinating but arcane corner of biology.


One line of research sometimes enables a scientist to stumble upon a discovery that then has profound implications in an unrelated application as is the case with these bacteria studies which have now given molecular biologists an unprecedented tool. I have always marveled at the way science accidentally makes "discoveries". Science does not always progress linearly. There is a correlation with biological evolution where early modifications ended up serving a completely novel roles that was more accidental than planned. Feathers were thought to originally be modifications for insulation that then by "accident" took evolution down the pathway toward flight in the early dinosaur/bird.

Technology and the integration of disciplines like molecular biology and electronics will play a major role in the trajectory going forward and will also produce surprises we cannot even imagine today, I remain a bit cornucopian in this regard.

With molecular biology we have been tip toeing around the ethic and moral implications. By the way, in my chapter in commerce I sold confocal laser microscopes and micro manipulator tools that allowed geneticists to cut and snip pieces of chromosomes in some of the early work done with genetic engineering. This was in Latin America. In the Dominican Republic there was a research institute we sold equipment to that was set up so they could do research forbidden due to the ethics laws in the US around cloning. This was back in the early 2000's.

The Chinese of course have no ethical qualms about this stuff.

The technology is advancing at a pace where at some point we will have to break through this ethical glass ceiling around optimizing the human genome in ways your post suggests. This will be the ultimate brave new world if we get there.

We aren't yet done playing god....................
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Re: The Stark Realities of Baked-In Catastrophes

Unread postby Ibon » Tue 20 Jun 2017, 12:22:37

Hey Dohboi, Hedges needs to train his militants to target molecular biologists along with the fossil fuel industry if he wants to slow down this juggernaut.....

I have contradictory sentiments, I am a luddite in many ways as well, my dad's Mennonite heritage shining through..... I do hold mother nature as somehow ultimately wise in her ways and believe we ultimately must yield to her wisdom.

But you know, I am not so stubborn in this position either. Century after century that religious sects and sociologists and scientists (Malthus) have predicted that the industrial revolution was sinful or destabilizing, we never the less magically continue to pull the rabbit out of the hat.

Will we leapfrog once again into a brave new world through technology and prove all those malthusian afficionados wrong?

Sometimes I do entertain this thought.
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Re: The Stark Realities of Baked-In Catastrophes

Unread postby KaiserJeep » Tue 20 Jun 2017, 12:40:15

onlooker wrote:We will persist for a few more human generations but our fate is actually already sealed, by our ape natures, and the certain knowledge that the average human already struggles to survive and therefore will never be making informed choices about what to eat and how to live for the good of the human race and the other species.---I agree, that our fate may be sealed, But NOT for the lack of knowledge or our ape traits, but simply because of the unfortunate adoption of an energy source capable of being so rich energy wise and capable of disrupting the climate system so much. You can thus make the argument that our "intelligence " ultimately betrayed us. Alas, only time will tell if this planet after all this assault, will still remain capable of supporting any of us or other current higher life forms into the more distant future


onlooker, I think you are almost there. However your perspective is that of a 21st Century educated man with most of the knowledge of the human race available via the network. It's easy to craft a remark such as: "I agree, that our fate may be sealed, But NOT for the lack of knowledge or our ape traits, but simply because of the unfortunate adoption of an energy source capable of being so rich energy wise and capable of disrupting the climate system so much.", but really, think of how we got where we are. The technology of coal mining and burning dates back thousands of years, and evolved through a (fairly rare) blacksmith's fuel to an important and widespread industrial energy source in the early 19th Century. Likewise petroleum refining was a late 19th century innovation, explosively growing from a source of lamp oil (i.e. kerosene) to a vehicle fuel (gasoline and diesel and fuel oils for marine steam plants) in the early 20th Century.

By contrast, the rise of widespread "environmental concerns" was a late 20th Century innovation, arguably beginning with the publication of Carson's Silent Spring in 1962. I'll grant you that isolated writings about the environment existed before then, but as with the usage of the FF's themselves, the widespread acceptance is during the lifetime of most peakoil.com members.

There is no stopping FF usage, and nobody to blame for this. You and I both understand that using grid electricity (for the most part) the same as burning coal. We understand that buying anything online or at a brick & mortar store is acquiring goods with embedded petroleum energy, if only for transport. We understand also that individual consumers are responsible for the choices we make - because green energy sources exist, and the ability to grow food on your own property, and BEVs can be had in place of ICE vehicles.

YES, we both understand these things, and we have both chosen to buy exotic foods from far away places, to own fuel-burning vehicles, to buy manufactured goods, and to use the electric grid. YOU and ME are both consciously "killing the planet". WE also understand that "big oil" and "big coal", and "TPTB" are only reflections of our own desires and choices, and thus not to be blamed.

Is this not the case?
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Re: The Stark Realities of Baked-In Catastrophes

Unread postby onlooker » Tue 20 Jun 2017, 13:06:34

Yes, it does in hindsight seem that our destiny was predetermined. I think all of us here have reached similar conclusions with subtle nuanced differences. And not much now can be done to save the majority of humans ,we also seem to agree on. But I still say it would be foolish to not preach the gospel of environmentalism considering the marvel this planet has been for nurturing life including our own.
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Re: The Stark Realities of Baked-In Catastrophes

Unread postby Ibon » Tue 20 Jun 2017, 15:03:52

I would say that yes everything has pretty much been predetermined. AS KJ mentioned scientific based environmentalism started around the publication of Rachel Carson's book which by no coincidence emerged exactly when we started noticing consequences, in her day this was due to an organochlorine DDT which had profound effects as it bio accumulated in higher life forms and birds like the Brown Pelican, Peregrin Falcon and Bald Eagle populations were decimated.

So where I might provide some cautionary optimism in your guys posts is that the predetermined trajectory of burning fossil fuels is only now taking our civilization through the grist mill of consequences, at a more deeply profound systemic level then 40 years ago.

This is all novel territory for modern humans, about to be confronted with a cascading series of external feedbacks on many fronts. It is NOT predetermined how Kudzu Ape will respond. Therein lies some of Onlooker's more optimistic sentiments of a possible emerging sense of sacredness toward our mother earth which I also share, paradoxically this coming about as a result of imbalances just as Rachel Carson's rise of environmental consciousness did as well. Herein lies also some of the most dystopian predictions as well. The past up till now was predetermined , the possible decimation and extinction going forward lies hovering over our species as we move into the deepening chapters of external feedbacks.

That we will emerge wiser or plunge into extinction is frankly unknowable. We can be accurate about the predetermined trajectory up until today. And that is it.
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Re: The Stark Realities of Baked-In Catastrophes

Unread postby dohboi » Tue 20 Jun 2017, 15:11:00

"Militant: "...aggressive in support of a political or social cause..."

Not necessarily violent.

Of course, TPTB will always portray any effective movement as essentially violent, or supply agents provocateurs to make it seem so.

I'm glad you think we may sure emerge wiser, and I hope for that, too. It may be the only even remotely realistic thing I hope for these days. But I with you do not think that this is pre-determined any more than I think any of the rest of it was.

But yes, we are entering the age of consequences in a big way. If 'we' have 'pulled the rabbit out of the hat' in the past, it has generally been because we gored someone else's 'rabbit' in the process--think of the many cultures and ecosystems that have been and are being annihilated in the rise of the West and of industrialism.

But with fossil-death-fueled industrialism, we have also been 'goring the rabbit' of future generations, by progressively making the planet less and less habitable.

Now we are entering that future, so the consequences will be falling on our heads at an ever faster, more furious race and with ever more intensity. And there aren't other readily available hats to pull rabbits out of rabbits to gore (unless you want to go on adventures throughout the universe with KJ and Captain Marvel, or to infinity and beyond! with Buzz Lightyear, of course!! :-D :-D ).
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Re: The Stark Realities of Baked-In Catastrophes

Unread postby Ibon » Tue 20 Jun 2017, 15:59:14

dohboi wrote: If 'we' have 'pulled the rabbit out of the hat' in the past, it has generally been because we gored someone else's 'rabbit' in the process--think of the many cultures and ecosystems that have been and are being annihilated in the rise of the West and of industrialism.

But with fossil-death-fueled industrialism, we have also been 'goring the rabbit' of future generations, by progressively making the planet less and less habitable.


That was a great post Dohboi, and funny, even KJ will have to chuckle at that!

Good points about pulling the rabbit out of the hat at the expense of other cultures and the environment. This was because of the exponential growth of our human population during these past episodes.

I can foresee another round of pulling the rabbit out of the hat that this time happens during the contraction. It wont be at the expense of others resource sinks but instead it will be technology driven trying to keep pace and maintain stability in an environment that forces our population to contract. In this case we wont need the energy inherent in other bioregions or cultures as in the past, we will just hone the technology as a response to dealing with crisis and sadly we will leave marginalized areas to die-off.

Take KJ's point on where this CRISPR technology could lead us. It might be science fiction fantasy to colonize space but this technology is doable and right here on earth.

Here is an analogy. What happens to a body that goes into shock. Blood supply goes to vital organs and leave the extremities. Let's apply this to our global civilization. Consequences and constraints puts our global civilization into shock, this results in an elite that preserves energy and resources to the vital organs of running civilization for a chosen few allowing a whole new set of criteria to emerge for marginalized areas. A nice way to say we just let them die-off. This is as you say Dohboi pulling the rabbit out of the hat at the expense of humans that inhabit marginalized bio regions.

In this core center where elites persevere the technology work on the human genome is done to optimize our species as the vast sea of kudzu apes succumb to human overshoot. And the tweeking of the human genome combined with the cultural impacts of the contraction permits the emergence of a new and improved ape whose biological design allow the adjective Kudzu to be dropped.

We achieve Onlooker dream of a more compassionate ape that cares for his and her environment. I use the genders here because we will want to preserve genders but have the hormone distribution a little more androgynous to balance aggression with altruism, intuition with linear intelligence. The plumbing can remain the same with maybe some enhancement to the genitals but the hormones definitely need tweeking.

Cerebral cortex will expand, those science fiction depictions of bigger pear shaped skulls to hold more brain power will prevent natural child birth unless females are designed with wider birth canals. We might just forego natural child birth.

I am joking but I am also not joking. The last 200 saw each generation going to a place that was unimaginable to the previous generation. Why should this now change. Yes, external feedbacks will dominate and drive technology but for a small chosen elite we may truly play god in making a better biological version of ourselves.

We do it to sheep, cows and chickens and corn and rice and soy. Why should we be exempt from applying this technology to ourselves especially in an urgent time of instability when the normal moral and ethical objections can be overuled?
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Re: The Stark Realities of Baked-In Catastrophes

Unread postby dohboi » Tue 20 Jun 2017, 16:14:40

...core center where elites... [sit by while] ...kudzu apes succumb to human overshoot....

We achieve Onlooker dream of a more compassionate ape


Not quite sure how watching billions of your fellow human beings die horrible deaths without lifting a finger to help will result in some marvelously more compassionate humans...but it's your fantasy...

The rest gets even further into technotopian fantasy, so I guess I'll leave you folks to wallow in those juices on your own.
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Re: The Stark Realities of Baked-In Catastrophes

Unread postby dohboi » Tue 20 Jun 2017, 16:18:31

dohboi wrote:
...core center where elites... [sit by while] ...kudzu apes succumb to human overshoot....

We achieve Onlooker dream of a more compassionate ape


Not quite sure how watching billions of your fellow human beings die horrible deaths without lifting a finger to help will result in some marvelously more compassionate humans...but it's your fantasy...

The rest gets even further into technotopian fantasy, so I guess I'll leave you folks to wallow in those juices on your own.

:)

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FtJzF6PD2nM
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Re: The Stark Realities of Baked-In Catastrophes

Unread postby Outcast_Searcher » Tue 20 Jun 2017, 16:19:12

Ibon wrote:I am not religious but there is profound wisdom in this simple passage

God grant me the serenity
to accept the things I cannot change;
courage to change the things I can;
and wisdom to know the difference.

Religion (at least the major organized religions I am aware of) is a branch of philosophy.

You're absolutely right, IMO. There is some tremendous wisdom in religious texts.

That is true regardless of whether we want to "buy into" the underlying mythos of "pick your particulars" of the various religions, take one of them literally, etc.
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