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Exploring the Gap Between Business-as-Usual and Utter Doom

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Predicting the future is a fool’s errand, but everybody does it. As long as we’ve had language—for tens of thousands of years, at last estimate—we’ve been able to formulate the question, “What will tomorrow bring?” The answers have ranged from idyllic to hellish, though the reality has been, more often than not, “a lot like today.”

Since the Industrial Revolution, the dominant method employed by forecasters has been to extrapolate recent trends forward in time—trends which, due to the availability during this period of cheap, abundant energy, have been mostly in the directions of economic growth and technological progress. With the advent of coal, oil, and natural gas, industrial societies were able to build a middle class, create jobs, extract and process raw materials in ever-greater amounts, make a cascading array of consumer products, and transport people and goods in quantities, and at speeds and distances, never previously imaginable. Sanitation and health care improved dramatically, lowering the human death rate and helping spur the greatest population expansion in the history of our species.

For planners, it seemed eminently sensible to align a ruler with these upward-sloping lines on graphs and extend them out a few more inches, indicating years or decades of yet more growth and progress (yes, I know, the process was more complicated that this—but not much). The method produced moderately accurate forecasts. Moreover, forecasters were applauded, as most people would very much like to think that growth and progress can indeed be maintained for the foreseeable future, since failure to do so would imply shattered dreams and expectations.

However, during the past 40 years experts who study ecology, climate, population, resource depletion, and debt dynamics have pointed out that recent growth trends simply cannot go on much longer; instead, a reckoning with natural limits will almost certainly occur during the course of this century. Followers of each relevant discipline have pointed out dire consequences that will ensue if policy makers do not implement certain course corrections, such as population stabilization and decline, rapid carbon emissions reductions, and habitat conservation on a vast scale.

In the main—that is, aside from the adoption of a few important but non-transformative environmental regulations—society has failed to correct course, and so dire and multivalent consequences should now be expected. If the more conservative estimates of planetary limits are approximately correct, we should anticipate a future that is profoundly challenging; one characterized by societal disintegration and ecosystem failure. In the very worst case, the extinction of most animal and plant species, including humans, is conceivable. And the downward slide will begin soon, if it has not already done so.

The enormous gap between these outcomes—business-as-usual growth and progress on one hand, and limits-induced collapse on the other—has always constituted a disputed yet vital space. The goal of those who say we can’t maintain business-as-usual has never been to promote collapse, but rather to suggest things we could do to alter current behavior and trends so that a crash will be more moderate and survivable. In effect, they have been exploring the gap, looking for landing points on the way up or down the growth escalator; or seeking to close the gap, lessening the boom so that the bust isn’t as severe.

Recent years have seen policy makers continuing to pursue growth above all other priorities. At the same time, the news and entertainment media (nourished by pro-growth advertising revenues) have sought to shelter the masses from exposure to the dangerous truth that rapid expansion of population and consumption on a finite planet is a recipe for disaster.

Unfortunately, many of those who are aware of limits have either chosen to avoid the question altogether or made a concerted effort to soften their message in order to gain traction with power-holders; thus some PR-savvy environmentalists now promise endless “green growth” that can somehow be achieved through an elusive “decoupling” of social benefits, on one hand, from population growth, energy use, and materials consumption on the other.  Of course, those who are aware of limits are somewhat rare; the majority of those who are concerned about the climate crisis or other environmental issues don’t see these as manifestations of a deeper systemic pattern of “overshoot.”

Meanwhile, however, the warning signs that industrial civilization is rapidly approaching non-negotiable planetary limits now flash red. Each of the last 16 months has established an all-time global temperature record. The oil industry appears to have entered a terminal crisis due to its requirement for ever-higher levels of investment in order to find, produce, refine, and deliver ever-lower-quality resources. Plant and animal species are disappearing at a thousand times the normal extinction rate. And global debt levels have soared since the 2008 financial crisis, setting the stage for an even greater financial convulsion whenever the next cyclical recession hits.

Those who study limits have grown more numerous and they now comb the evidence more skillfully and meticulously. Some have emerged to announce publicly that there is now effectively nothing that world leaders can do to prevent civilization collapse, mass suffering and die-off, and ecosystem ruin. Humanity, they say, has squandered its opportunities for course correction; now the worst-case scenario is guaranteed.

In effect, the gap between anticipated outcomes has become bigger and more politically contested than ever. That means it is now even harder to explore the gap or to narrow it. Which is a tragedy, because it’s only by grasping opportunities that lie within the gap that we are likely to find shelter from the approaching storm.

cover_ORF_FINAL_w border-400Perhaps I can illustrate the current challenges of gap exploring with an example from my own work. Recently I collaborated with co-author and energy expert David Fridley on a yearlong research project whose findings are summarized in our new book, Our Renewable Future. We examined the potential transition to a mostly wind-and-solar energy economy with the goal of being ruthlessly honest. We looked at prior analysis from grid operators and fuel suppliers as well as from wind and solar engineers. Further, we studied not just energy supply requirements, but also needed changes in the ways energy is currently used so as to fit with new sources. We viewed the project (though we didn’t use this exact terminology) as critical gap-exploring work: society’s transition away from fossil fuels and toward renewable alternatives will be key to averting the worst of climate change, and it will have to occur in any case due to the ongoing depletion of economically recoverable oil, coal, and natural gas resources. What are the prospects for this transition? What are the potential roadblocks?

We concluded that, while in theory it may be possible to build enough solar and wind supply capacity to substitute for current fossil energy sources, much of current energy usage infrastructure (for transportation, agriculture, and industrial processes) will be difficult and expensive to adapt to using renewable electricity. In the face of these and other related challenges, we suggest that it likely won’t be possible to maintain a consumption-oriented growth economy in the post-fossil future, and that we would all be better off aiming to transition to a simpler and more localized conserver economy.

The response to our book has been a little underwhelming. Few readers (or potential readers) seem to want to engage with the issues our analysis raises. Some have responded by insisting that solar and wind power can’t possibly prevent the wholesale collapse of our economy and planetary life support systems. They are convinced that renewables can’t meaningfully replace fossil fuels and therefore dismiss our vision for a “100 percent renewable energy future” as overly optimistic. Meanwhile, others say the shift to renewables is an unstoppable juggernaut and that any doubt about their capabilities amounts to defeatism or worse.

The latter attitude was epitomized in a recent essay by science historian and Merchants of Doubt author Naomi Oreskes. In it she equates critical comments about solar and wind power with climate denialism. Oreskes builds her case on reports by Stanford environmental engineer Mark Jacobson, who merely shows how (again, in theory), given enough investment, supplies of renewable electricity could be ramped up to match current and projected total energy usage levels. Jacobson either ignores, or quickly glosses over, most of the issues raised in Our Renewable Future. In his view, the only thing standing in the way of a renewably-powered but otherwise business-as-usual future is political will on the part of policy makers.

On the other side of the divide are those who dismiss renewable energy sources entirely—such as actuary and energy writer Gail Tverberg, who claims that building solar and wind capacity actually makes societies worse off than they already are. Her critiques of renewables appear to be based almost entirely on literature from fossil fuel and utility companies; she doesn’t seem to cite much data from solar and wind engineers. Her criticisms have some merit—but not nearly as much as they would have if they reflected a more balanced survey of the subject.

The reality that David Fridley and I encountered is complicated and nuanced. On the plus side, solar and wind technologies do produce a significant net surplus of energy (that is, energy over and above the amount that must be invested in building and installing panels and turbines). Further, a lot of current energy usage can be electrified and made substantially more efficient. But key aspects of our current industrial system (including cement production, the chemicals industry, shipping, and aviation) will be difficult to maintain without cheap fossil-fuel inputs; during the transition, these sectors may have to be downsized, perhaps quite dramatically. The adaptations required in how society uses energy will be transformative for the entire economy and for the ways ordinary people live. We won’t know exactly what a post-fossil industrial economy will like until we get busy addressing a list of questions. (Here are just three: How much investment capital are we willing and able to muster for this purpose? Can the economy continue to function in the face of much higher costs for industrial processes? What happens to the financial system if GDP growth is no longer possible?)

We’ll never find out if we refuse to budge from where we are. Indeed, if we don’t make the effort to push the transition forward quickly, there simply won’t be a post-fossil economy; society will shudder and falter until it lies in ruins.

Given that business-as-usual airports, shopping malls, skyscrapers, and container ships have a vanishingly small likelihood of remaining useful or replicable much longer, what we really ought to be doing is to explore structures that are sustainable—and that implies identifying simpler pathways for meeting basic human needs. Since maintaining and adapting current levels of transport will be a big, likely insurmountable challenge, we might start by aiming to shorten supply chains and localize economies.

Social innovation will probably play a more important role in this adaptive and transformative process than the invention of new machines. Yes, we need research and development in hundreds of technical areas, including ways of building and maintaining roads without asphalt or concrete; ways of producing essential pharmaceuticals without fossil fuels; and ways of building solar panels and wind turbines using a minimum of fuels and rare, exotic materials. But in fact we already have lower-tech ways of solving a lot of problems. We know how to build wooden sailing ships; we know how to construct highly energy-efficient houses using local, natural materials; we know how to grow food without fossil inputs and distribute it locally. Why don’t we use these methods more? Because they’re not as fast or convenient, they can’t operate at the same scale, they’re not as profitable, and they don’t fit with our vision of “progress”.

That’s where social innovation comes in. In order for the transition to occur as smoothly as possible, we’ll need to change our expectations about speed, convenience, affordability, and entitlement. We’ll need to share what we have rather than competing for increasingly scarce resources. We’ll need to conserve, reuse, and repair. There will be no room for planned obsolescence, or for growing disparities between rich and poor. Cooperation will be our salvation. So, too, will be recognizing that there are limits—both to the planet’s capacity to support our numbers and activities, and to the role of technology in “fixing” these crises. But just because we can no longer continue to grow population, consumption, and complexity does not mean we can no longer grow happiness, well-being, or prosperity.

However, we’ll be making these behavioral and attitudinal shifts in the context of periodically profound disruptions to the economy and the environment. That’s why a very big part of our gap-closing work will consist of building community resilience. That word resilience is now frequently invoked by large philanthropic foundations and by military planners who see climate disruptions on the horizon. Yet often their visions of resilience seem to consist mostly of building walls to protect business districts in coastal cities from rising seas, or designing combat equipment to withstand harsher weather. For most communities, though, meaningful resilience-building efforts are likely to be more grassroots and less bureaucratic. Improving resilience will consist of assessing specific vulnerabilities, and then building buffers (such as inventories of essential supplies), enhancing barriers (for example, by creating more resistance to flooding through wetlands restoration), or increasing redundancies (by diversifying local food sources through support of young farmers). It will also mean strengthening social cohesion and trust by encouraging participation in community organizations and cultural events.

At Post Carbon Institute we’ve been looking into how to build community resilience for several years. We’ve published a series of books on strengthening local food systems, starting local renewable energy projects, and keeping investment capital circulating within communities rather than letting it flow to distant financial centers. We also host a robust, daily updated website, www.resilience.org, that provides readers with thoughtful essays and descriptions of best practices gleaned from gap-closing projects around the world. There are other projects in the wings, including a video series for college students studying sustainability and resilience, and a Community Resilience Reader.

We would like to do a great deal more, but we’ve found that funding for exploring or narrowing the gap is relatively puny compared to what’s available for business-as-usual projects. Want to build a highway for commuters; an LNG export terminal; or a new housing complex comprised of structures designed to last a mere 50 years, to use exorbitant amounts of energy for heating and cooling, and to employ building materials that have the highest possible amounts of embodied energy? No problem! How many millions do you need? But for a local food hub, a Transition Town effort, a marketplace for locally produced wares, a cooperative enterprise incubator, or a tool library, there’s spare change at best.

Even some otherwise smart and knowledgeable funders of nonprofits shy away from gap work in favor of continued support for big, conventional environmental organizations that attempt to slow the tide of environmental destruction or offer the promise of a clean energy future that won’t require profound shifts in how we live. These are evidently considered a safer bet, though their high-profile efforts to battle fossil fuel and mining interests may offer little tangible help to ordinary people as the energy transition accelerates due to the thermodynamic failure of the global oil industry.

The many thousands of people working at gap-closing and resilience-building efforts deserve more attention and support, and not just because they are practical and caring individuals—as most of them are. They are, after all, providing society with the equivalent of fire insurance and seat belts at a time when metaphoric and literal fires and crashes are certain to become far more frequent and severe. It’s the amount and quality of work that can be accomplished within the gap that will determine who survives, and how many survive, as boom turns to bust.

When it comes to forecasting the future, count me among the pessimists. I’m convinced that the consequences of decades of obsession with maintaining business-as-usual will be catastrophic. And those consequences could be upon us sooner than even some of my fellow pessimists assume.

Yet I’m not about to let this pessimism (or is it realism?) get in the way of doing what can still be done in households and communities to avert utter doom. And, while decades of failure in imagination and investment have foreclosed a host of options, I think there are still some feasible alternatives to business-as-usual that would actually provide significant improvements in most people’s daily experience of life.

The gap is where the action is. All else—whether fantasy or nightmare—is a distraction.

Richard Heinberg



26 Comments on "Exploring the Gap Between Business-as-Usual and Utter Doom"

  1. penury on Wed, 28th Sep 2016 4:37 pm 

    I for one am a pessimist. Based upon 80 years on earth and living in five disparate countries with economies that range from no economy to the U.S. Ignorance is the primary reaction,denial is rampant among the people of economies that are doing well, I assume cognitive disconnect for these folk. The only true believer I have seen in climate change are the poorest people, those that have maintained a connection with the earth. they are faced with the changes in flora and fauna repeatedly and they may not know why the changes are occurring however they do know that change is happening.

  2. Survivalist on Wed, 28th Sep 2016 5:27 pm 

    I don’t bother much with normative questions, like is it good or bad, are you optimistic or pessimistic etc. What interests me is it big or small. I think quantitative not qualitative. No matter how you slice it one thing is true- there’s gonna be a famine. Mouths will be big in number, food will be small. That’s just basic science. My guess is people won’t like it. That’s what history shows anyway. People will get smashy, stabbie and shootie. A lot of porcelain is gonna get broken. Those who don’t do well in famine are the young and the old, as well as the unprepared. It’s gonna be a hell of a time! I’m guessing between 2018 and 2023 the wheels come off the bus. 2025 will be the train wreck. 2030 will be well into a Hobbesian scramble for survival.

  3. Cloggie on Wed, 28th Sep 2016 5:45 pm 

    Sorry for kicking in an open door, but fossil has no future. It is either running out or impossible to use in the long run (“climate change”). Do we have viable alternatives? Yes:

    – Wind (on land and offshore)
    – Solar panels with cheap 24h-storage underway
    – Solar collectors for space heating, with seasonal storage underway
    – Geothermal energy: pumping up water of 80-100C for space heating
    – Hydropower (largely fully exploited) and hydro-storage
    – Biofuel for niche applications like mining
    – Flying will become less of an option for the masses with every passing year

    In the long run there is no energy problem. There is an abundance of solar radiation for millions of years to come. Prices are coming down on all fronts and can already compete with fossil.

    Thanks to fracking Peak Oil-2012 didn’t happen and we have some breathing space (bad choice of words).

    Indeed, as Heinberg says, it is unlikely that we will be able to continue the growth-based consumption economy like we had since the sixties, but peak oil-induced collapse-scenario’s like the infamous Olduvai Gorge are simply not going to happen.

    You should worry about overpopulation, destabilizing migration, nukes, war, financial collapse, debt and what not, but not that we are going to run out of kwh’s any time soon.

  4. Dredd on Wed, 28th Sep 2016 7:00 pm 

    Exploring the Gap Between Business-as-Usual and Utter Doom

    Impressive discussion of the issues reverberating there in the twilight zone between the ongoing ideological evolution and struggles.

    Their language is crisp in contrast with some other dialects (Dress Codes: Language As A Clothing Metaphor).

  5. Apneaman on Wed, 28th Sep 2016 7:33 pm 

    BAU will continue until it can’t. The humans are incapable of change and have always pushed their resources and environment to the limit without a care for the future. Evolution made them that way. Plague species.

    Humans responsible for demise of gigantic ancient mammals

    Early humans were the dominant cause of the extinction of a variety of species of giant beasts, new research has revealed.

    “Known collectively as megafauna, most of the largest mammals ever to roam the earth were wiped out over the last 80,000 years, and were all extinct by 10,000 years ago.”

    http://www.exeter.ac.uk/news/featurednews/title_465673_en.html

    South America’s prehistoric people spread like ‘invasive species’

    ”The first phase of colonization in South America coincided with the extinction of many large animals including elephant relatives, saber-toothed cats, big ground sloths, armadillos and huge flightless birds.

    During this period, human populations underwent “boom-and-bust cycles” as people exhausted local plant and animal resources, Stanford anthropologist Amy Goldberg said.”

    http://www.reuters.com/article/us-science-southamerica-idUSKCN0X32J1

    Australian Megafauna: Humans Responsible For Extinction, Study Says

    Contrary to previous theories, humans were the likely culprit behind the extinction of Australia’s prehistoric beasts.

    http://www.hngn.com/articles/178666/20160212/australian-megafauna-humans-responsible-for-extinction-study-says.htm

  6. Apneaman on Wed, 28th Sep 2016 7:42 pm 

    Trees the world over – many of the one humans are not cutting down are being killed by invasive bugs due to AGW, wildfire, drought and other pathogens and all sorts of human pollution. A dying world.

    An American tragedy: why are millions of trees dying across the country?

    A quiet crisis playing out in US forests as huge numbers of trees succumb to drought, disease, insects and wildfire – much of it driven by climate change

    https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2016/sep/19/tree-death-california-hawaii-sudden-oak

    Amid drought, mystery disease kills Zimbabwe’s baobabs

    http://news.trust.org/item/20160704103323-lj6dg/?source=fiHeadlineStory

    Apple growers start harvest after summer of fighting disease

    http://montreal.ctvnews.ca/apple-growers-start-harvest-after-summer-of-fighting-disease-1.3067981

  7. Davy on Wed, 28th Sep 2016 7:46 pm 

    Great article by Heinberg touching on the many issues we deal with daily. Let’s elaborate just a little. His book concludes “it likely won’t be possible to maintain a consumption-oriented growth economy in the post-fossil future, and that we would all be better off aiming to transition to a simpler and more localized conserver economy.” I would elaborate by saying the consequences of not maintaining a consumption-oriented growth economy is a die-off. Will this die off happen over a generation or within a decade? This warning should be part of his point. A simpler and more localized conserver economy means the end of globalism. It means the end of mega population centers. It means a population of 1BIL or less because it is only a globalized economy that feeds 7BIL. The economy feeds all of us and changing it means ending it and ending it means a die off.

    His book should have concluded that the status quo cannot be reformed it can only be destroyed. The status quo will be actively attempting to maintain itself until the very end. This will be the “gap” that will leave many exposed to the full furry of collapse.

    I am impressed Heinberg came out as a full-fledged pessimist. I also like how he refuses to lay down and die in the face of utter doom. He is right by saying it is important we find feasible alternatives to the status quo. I would alter one of his last points by saying instead, some feasible alternatives will significantly improve people’s daily lives in a collapsing world. I do not think there will be much improvements only improvements in people’s lives over what their lives could be without action. Maybe for a time it can be, “provide significant improvements in most people’s daily experience of life.” The status quo is still alive. It is not well but still kicking. Improvements will just be a stop gap until the status quo deteriorates to a point where all of us will be in a relative free fall.

    One thing is clear this will likely be a complex descent. Some areas are surely going to see the worst sooner. For some it may be an advantage to experience collapse sooner rather than later. Being the last man standing may not be an advantage. I say this because when we get to the last man the drop may be huge. Other areas who collapsed earlier may have adapted and adjusted making them hardened to further falls. These are the kind on incongruities of common sense that are ahead.

    We are transitioning into a different world that will not operate as we have been habituated to. Catch 22 predicaments are full of paradoxes. The gap is with our social narrative that wants to tell us we will progress. Until we adapt mentally and spiritually to a collapsing world actions will be haphazard and sporadic. This means local and in small groups is the only place to find true beneficial action. This also means the potential for lost effort. Think of all the localized efforts that will be swallowed up and digested by a mad max world once collapse is in earnest. Yet, at least these local efforts provide hope and the provide options. If you have no options then you have nothing when the times comes. Collapse preparations are the call to action Heiberg is alluding to. He can’t say that because society can’t handle the truth.

  8. makati1 on Wed, 28th Sep 2016 8:32 pm 

    “In a 40 minute speech opening, the September G20 Summit in Hangzhou, Chinese President Xi Jinping outlined a global vision so comprehensive and detailed that it was tantamount to a blueprint for restructuring and transforming the currently unbalanced architecture of the world economy, and replacing it with a more stable model, enhancing economic and social justice.

    The blueprint advocated by China’s President would end the dominance of predatory Western Capitalist economies predicated on the plunder of the developing world, and exploitation of the rich natural resources of Africa, Asia and Latin America. This plunder has fueled and sustained the monopolization of global wealth by a narcissistic and miniscule minority of .01 percent of the world’s population, while condemning the vast 99% majority of the world’s population to the doom inflicted by the Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse: conquest, war, famine and pestilence.”

    http://www.globalresearch.ca/chinas-solution-to-the-restructuring-the-world-economys-unbalanced-architecture/5548244

    “It was significant that the grossly increased investment in advanced nuclear weapons by the USA and the UK was not discussed publicly at the G20 in Hangzhou. Regardless of the focus of the Summit on investment in development and cooperation, the discrepancy with the countervailing investments by some G20 participants in the instruments of global destruction, however profitable, should have been of central concern. Ignoring this discrepancy forfeits a great opportunity, and merely postpones the inevitable day of reckoning.”

    War is coming to your neighborhood, courtesy of the Empire.

  9. makati1 on Wed, 28th Sep 2016 8:43 pm 

    Why America Needs War

    “The America of wealth and privilege is hooked on war, without regular and ever-stronger doses of war it can no longer function properly, that is, yield the desired profits.”

    http://www.globalresearch.ca/why-america-needs-war/5328631

    Violence: The American Way of Life

    “The United States of America was conceived and nurtured by violence.

    Americans not only engage in violence, they are entertained by it.

    Killing takes place in America at an average of 87 times each day. Going to war in Afghanistan is less dangerous than living in Chicago.

    The Romans went to the Coliseum to watch people being killed. In major cities, Americans just look out their windows. Baseball, once America’s national game, a benign, soporific sport, has been replaced by football which is so violent it destroys the brains of those who play it. Violent films, euphemized as action flicks, dominate our motion picture theatres and television sets. Our children play killing video games.”

    http://www.globalresearch.ca/violence-the-american-way-of-life/5318698

    America’s “Humanitarian War” against the World

    “The world is at a dangerous crossroads. The United States and its allies have launched a military adventure which threatens the future of humanity.”

    http://www.globalresearch.ca/americas-humanitarian-war-against-the-world/5539814

    Pentagon Chief Outlines US Plans for Nuclear War with Russia

    US Defense Secretary Ashton Carter delivered a speech to “missileers” at the Air Force Global Strike Command base in Minot, South Dakota Monday, defending the massive modernization of the US nuclear arsenal and issuing bellicose threats against Russia.”

    http://www.globalresearch.ca/pentagon-chief-outlines-us-plans-for-nuclear-war-with-russia/5548284

    It’s coming people, and the war tag will read “Made in the USA”.

  10. penury on Wed, 28th Sep 2016 9:12 pm 

    Since 1776 the United States has not been engaged in war (Counting the Indian conflicts) for 25 years and these were not contiginous.

  11. theedrich on Thu, 29th Sep 2016 2:13 am 

    Our special problem today is just this:  we are essentially primitive creatures struggling desperately to adjust ourselves to a way of life that is alien to almost the whole of the past history of our species.
     — astrophysicist Fred Hoyle, of Men and Galaxies (Seattle: U-WA Pr., 1964, 1966, p.65)

    The corrupt elites now dominating the industrial West are themselves dominated by an insidious parasite called Jewry.  Programmed by a deranged ideology queerly combining Marxist millenianism, Christian otherworldliness, and 18th century fantasies about humanity, this criminal oligarchic collective is driving planeticidal growth to its logical conclusion.

    The elites exult over the replacement of the evaporating White race by ThirdWorld fecal matter, deliberately ignoring the obvious and imminent results.  White suicide by narcotics, miscegenation and childlessness is for them a cause for jubilant rejoicing.  For them, a nation of ThirdWorld squalor and tyranny is far preferable to the politically incorrect “racism” of former America.  It is no wonder that with their propaganda they seek to divert attention from the snakepit of corruption that is Washington, D.C.

    But behind all of this willful plunge into nothingness is the widening abyss of meaninglessness in the White soul.  As Nietzsche pointed out so fiercely in the nineteenth century, the realization that Christianity is a confused historical farce leads to the short-circuited belief that there is nothing at all to justify human existence.  This belief is what now grips the collective unconscious of the ruling classes.

    As Nietzsche also said in Jenseits von Gut und Böse (Aphorism 146), “Wer mit Ungeheuern kämpft, mag zusehn, dass er nicht dabei zum Ungeheuer wird.  Und wenn du lange in einen Abgrund blickst, blickt der Abgrund auch in dich hinein” (“He who fights with monsters should be careful that in so doing he does not himself become a monster.  And if you gaze into an abyss for a long time, the abyss will also gaze back, penetrating into you”).  Today, in order to block the horror of this loss of meaning — seen so terrifyingly in the long reign of Communism — the moneyed elites seek to use the substitute farce of philanthropy and “concern” for the poor and lower anthropoids.  This, of course, only accelerates the general spiral into the black hole of extinction.

    Contrary to the conclusions of the 19th century nihilists, however, its is now clear that there is a non-anthropomorphic Mind undergirding the cosmos, a Mind with a will.  The problem with the modern genosuicidal, anti-White atheists in control is that they assume that the nicey-nice Christian-mythological raison d’être is the only possible one, since that is what most of them were taught in their childhood, and their religious development has never risen above that stage.  They also assume that only they are the custodians of “science.”  Further, they frantically attack any demonstrations which show that their nihilism is false.  Their zealotry drives them to invent ever more theoretical, utterly improbable constructs as reasons for the cosmos, such as “bubble universes,” umpteen String Theory fantasies, and other mathematical defense mechanisms, thereby deliberately and massively violating Occam’s razor that (in a popular though not original formulation) “Non sunt multiplicanda entia sine necessitate” (“Entities should not be multiplied beyond what is necessary”).  But that does not deter the zealots, because their egos and salaries depend on the multiplication of farces.  As for the common run of atheists/agnostics, they remain secure in their belief systems that only their phylogenetic memories and drives (see Hoyle’s quote, above) matter.

    As opposed to this nihilism, the reality of a cosmic inframind — an intelligent soul of the universe — is manifested by:  the “fine tuning” of the universe (the preconditions which produce “Goldilocks” planets with adequate life-support systems);  the incredibly complex biological programming found even at the cellular levels of life forms;  the epistemological (learning) nature of life and evolution;  the drive of all living entities to maintain existence and avoid death (a drive which includes fear, pain and distress as negative feedback);  the entities’ constant reproduction, both sexual and asexual, thereby maintaining the stream of life;  the recovery of life from countless extinction events;  and  — something the atheists go into blind rages of denial over — evidence of the paranormal.

    The facts simply contradict all of this nihilist-Marxist-Christian nonsense.  And they show that the only way for intelligent life on earth to continue much longer is for the lower levels of mankind (the vast majority) to be eliminated.  And that is what the current madmen in power cannot abide.

  12. Cloud9 on Thu, 29th Sep 2016 7:13 am 

    I grew up in an orange grove. I have been in and around agriculture my whole life. I do not know a single living person who has plowed a field with a mule. Aside from a few museums, I do not know anyone who owns a one mule plow. I don’t know anyone who has a mule and I don’t know of a harness maker within a 500 mile radius of where I live. So, please tell me how we are going to make the transition to a more simple sustainable agriculture.
    What I am seeing is greening wiping out old orange groves by the hundreds of acres. And for the first time in my nearly 70 years, I have seen acreage that was once orange grove producing vegetables.

  13. makati1 on Thu, 29th Sep 2016 7:32 am 

    Cloud9, while I have seen fields plowed with a team of mules, (They were on an Amish farm in PA) I agree that all the dreams of regressing to a simpler farm lifestyle is not possible for 99.999% of us.

    First, any horse or mule requires a lot of food (tons) and water (thousands of gallons) annually. Second, you need to have the experience and ability to actually hitch up and plow a field with an animal, which also has to be trained to actually pull a plow by someone who knows how. You need stables or barns. and a;; of the other equipment to actually plant and harvest a field of crops. And .. you need a season with the right weather, at the right times, or you could lose it all. THAT is the new Catch 22 in Climate Change farming.

    These old time skills are mostly absent in the West and slowly disappearing in the rest of the world, although many 3rd world farmers still do so. It is not unusual here to see a carabao hitched to a large wagon loaded with produce or other items, but I have yet to see one hitched to a plow. But then, I do not live in the countryside, yet.

  14. Apneaman on Thu, 29th Sep 2016 10:44 am 

    Maybe sexy strongman VLAD will save the earth’s monkey people from the horrors of AGW? Nope, Russians can’t even manage their own wildfires – let it burn they say. Hey that’s my motto too.

    “We are Suffocating from Smoke” — For Russia, Climate Change is Already Producing Fires that are Too Big to Fight

    ““For one month we are suffocating from the smoke. The weather is hot, and there is a strong smell of burning…” — Residents of Bratsk, northwest of Lake Baikal, in a petition to Vladimir Putin pleading him to fight the fires now raging there.”

    -Climate Change Spikes Fire Incidence in Siberia

    -2016 Lake Baikal Fires Too Dangerous to Fight

    -For One Month We are Suffocating From Smoke

    -Signs of Exhaustion at the Start of a Rough Climate Future

    “Exhaustion of emergency response resources is one of the big threats posed by climate change. In instances where entire regions see extreme weather conditions that are far outside the norm for an extended period of time, such as as severe droughts, floods, and fires, instances of exhaustion are more likely to occur. Exhaustion also occurs when events appear that are too large or intense to manage. It appears that firefighting efforts in Russia are starting to show some signs of exhaustion. Not good, especially considering the fact that these conditions are tame compared to what will happen in future years without some very serious climate change mitigation and response efforts now.”

    https://robertscribbler.com/2016/09/28/for-one-month-we-are-suffocating-from-smoke-for-russia-climate-change-is-already-producing-fires-that-are-too-big-to-fight/

    Vlady Vlady he’s our man – if he can’t do it – no one can….. goooooo Vlady!

    No one can.

  15. Apneaman on Thu, 29th Sep 2016 11:06 am 

    Disturbing new pictures show the raging Siberian wildfires that (officially) do not exist

    http://siberiantimes.com/ecology/others/news/n0750-disturbing-new-pictures-show-the-raging-siberian-wildfires-that-officially-do-not-exist/

  16. Apneaman on Thu, 29th Sep 2016 11:18 am 

    Looks to me like BAU don’t like any interference.

    Military-Style Raid Ends Native Prayer Against Dakota Pipeline

    http://www.telesurtv.net/english/news/Military-Style-Raid-Ends-Native-Prayer-Against-Dakota-Pipeline-20160928-0029.html

  17. Apneaman on Thu, 29th Sep 2016 11:54 am 

    BAU continues unabated and so does the great dieoff/killoff

    Bumblebee Set to Become Officially Endangered

    “The rusty patched bumblebee – the workers of which can be identified by a small rust-colored mark on the middle of their second abdominal segment – was historically widespread along the east coast of North America, from Quebec down to Georgia, and across much of the midwest as far west as the Dakotas. However, says USFWS, since the late 1990s, the species’ numbers have decreased precipitously, and its range is now a mere 8 percentof its historical extent.”

    http://www.livescience.com/56312-bumblebee-species-may-become-endangered.html

  18. Apneaman on Thu, 29th Sep 2016 12:14 pm 

    BAU don’t need no stinking birds mang.

    1.5 billion birds missing from North American skies, ‘alarming’ report finds

    The report also listed 86 species of birds, including the Canadian warbler, that are threatened by plummeting populations, habitat destruction and climate change.

    https://www.thestar.com/news/world/2016/09/14/15-billion-birds-missing-from-north-american-skies-alarming-report-finds.html

    Europe’s birds are disappearing
    Sparrows and starlings are disappearing at an alarming rate in Europe

    “The usual suspects for these sorts of declines are the changes in farming practice we’ve seen over the last three decades or so – they have been suggested as a cause for many farmland bird declines. But our dataset contains lots of birds which aren’t really farmland birds, which use other habitats, so it is not just down to agricultural intensification. There is probably a lot whole suite of other causes: Increasing urbanization, use of pesticides and pesticides in the environment, habitat fragmentation, which is quite often caused by increasing urbanization. There are probably a lot of different factors.”

    http://www.dw.com/en/europes-birds-are-disappearing/a-18075373

    Arctic birds face disappearing breeding grounds as climate warms

    http://theconversation.com/arctic-birds-face-disappearing-breeding-grounds-as-climate-warms-62656

  19. Apneaman on Thu, 29th Sep 2016 12:39 pm 

    Excess Levels Of Dangerous Chemical Found In Tap Water Across US

    “Turns out lead isn’t the only thing that could be contaminating your tap water.

    Chromium-6, which people over the age of 30 might remember as the dangerous compound in the movie “Erin Brockovich,” is in the water supplied to most Americans.”

    “The Environmental Working Group analyzed findings from the Environmental Protection Agency and found over 200 million people in all 50 states have higher levels of chromium-6 in their water than what scientists consider safe.

    Excess levels of chromium compounds have been linked to lung and sinus cancer, as well as numerous other diseases.”

    http://www.newschannel5.com/newsy/excess-levels-of-dangerous-chemical-found-in-tap-water-across-us

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=g3X3rKtruSg

  20. Apneaman on Thu, 29th Sep 2016 9:49 pm 

    BAU for the humans

    New report confirms grim outlook for elephants

    Elephant populations in Africa have declined by around 111,000 over the past 10 years according to a new study.

    “The African Elephant Status report says that poaching is the main driver of the fall, the worst losses in 25 years.
    However the authors say that long-term issues such as the loss of habitat also pose a significant threat.”

    “Every year in Africa between 30,000 and 40,000 elephants are poached for their ivory, and it’s thought there are only 400,000 left.

    Even accounting for the newborns, this rate of killing calls into question whether these amazing creatures will still be around in a generation, especially as Africa’s ever-increasing population is reducing the space for them.

    Organised crime runs the ivory industry.”

    http://www.bbc.com/news/science-environment-37466444

  21. makati1 on Thu, 29th Sep 2016 10:26 pm 

    As I have said, the only animal that commits species suicide is the homo sapiens species. And we are getting closer and closer to that cliff every day, at faster and faster speeds. I think we have exceeded the speed where we can stop or even turn in time. We shall see.

  22. GregT on Thu, 29th Sep 2016 11:23 pm 

    But Mak, homo sapiens is not an animal. Homo sapiens ‘manages’ the Earth, and all other species on it. Homo sapiens is in control of everything.

  23. makati1 on Fri, 30th Sep 2016 12:24 am 

    Nice satire, GregT.

  24. GregT on Fri, 30th Sep 2016 12:40 am 

    More like a tragedy Makati.

  25. makati1 on Fri, 30th Sep 2016 1:17 am 

    GregT, I agree, but it is too late. All we can do is watch it happen and know we are likely one of the last few generations to exist.

  26. Cloggie on Fri, 30th Sep 2016 9:21 am 

    All we can do is watch it happen and know we are likely one of the last few generations to exist.

    Many peak oil doomers maintain that you can’t have an advanced society without fossil fuel. This can be debunked at least for the production of (biodegradable) plastic. Brussels intend to lift the quotum on the production of sugar beets from October 1, 2017. From then on the sky will be the limit. It is expected that European farmers will produce a lot more sugar beets, especially in the Netherlands, where currently 5% of the agricultural area is used for this purpose, but this number could grow to 14%. Purpose: plastic production. Expected investment volume for building three new processing plants in the coming 10 years: 1-3 billion euro.

    Planting of sugar beets:

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RdnlxhvbaqY

    Harvesting of sugar beet:

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OnYdAfqLOYI

    Production of plastic from sugar:

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6_O9AV_80l4

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