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Living At The Height Of Civilization — Staring Into The Abyss

General Ideas

 

Texas has switched back to Daylight Saving Time and I am once again driving to work in the dark. The stars were still out this morning when I left the house in the canyon and began my 28 mile commute to work, the first 20 miles or so I now achieve under eV power. It is now high spring in central Texas, and we have stopped using heat for the most part, but this morning the house was chilly with the clear morning temps of 39F.

I enjoy my coffee, which is fresh ground and liberally doctored with organic half and half. Delicious. My Chevy Volt has seat heaters, and they feel great in the crisp chill, especially on my back, which is still recovering from last Thursday’s job of moving the stock tank. Some ibuprofen helps a lot. I remember my friend Artie, who has passed on now.  Artie was an ex-marathon runner who skied his last several years on two artificial hip replacements, with the help of that ubiquitous non-steroidal pain killer. He referred to it as I-Be-Ski-In.

I am at work now and sipping coffee between patients. Yesterday was a tough, busy day, but it looks like today will be easier. Still busy, because it’s Spring Break here. I’m hungry, because I was so tired after work I ate a hamburger I picked up before I got home, and crawled into bed and slept until my wife got home around ten pm. I sat up in bed for an hour-and-a half and then passed out again until my normal time to rise, which is 5:45 am. When she came to bed, she brought the dogs, who were happy to lie quietly at our feet until I put them to bed and turned outtthe lights.

I have been blessed to live an easy life, full of abundance. I have a great family, with grown children who are getting along well in life. By all normal measures of success, I have it made,

But the world is definitely going to shit. The handwriting is on the wall for anyone with one eye and half a brain to see.  My country, which has long been blessed with the same kind of luck as me, is now in the death-throes of a dying empire. Led by a morally bankrupt blowhard who has hitched his wagon to the absolute worst of the low-grade fossil fuel barons of industry, every day the downward spiral speeds up.

The modest environmental protections of a generation ago, which never were strong, are being rolled back as completely as the courts will allow. The executive branch of government is now as firmly owned by the corporatocracy as is the legislative branch. The President, whose primary concern is winning the next election (while patting himself continuously on the back for winning the last one), has managed to run off the best of his sorry cabinet picks and bring the worst ones to positions of highest authority.

We have been a nation at war somewhere for many years now, if you can call illegitimate occupations of poor but strategically important nations war. Our wars are really just expensive occupations that drain the treasury of our once financially strong country. They make some greedy rich bastards a little richer, and the rest of us and our children and grandchildren yet unborn, a lot poorer.

At the moment, we are once again on the cusp of a coming World War, which I expect to be partially fought, at least, on American soil. This development will no doubt surprise the general public, which has not experienced such a disaster in modern times, and thinks of wars as unfortunate events, caused by foreign bad guys, that thankfully always happen far away in places they can’t quite manage to even pinpoint on a map.

Under-educated but nevertheless highly opinionated, Americans spend a lot of time online these days spouting whatever kind of closely held beliefs they cling to in lieu of facts and reality. Clever politicians and media barons manipulate public opinion seemingly at will. War is peace. Freedom is slavery. Ignorance is strength.

The climate, affected by massive CO2 build-up from burning fossil fuels, is rapidly going rogue. The oceans are dying. 150 to 200  species of plant and animal  become extinct each and every day that rolls. We are not immune. Our time is coming. Ironically, the only possible salvation appears to be a systemic collapse of civilization that removes the offending pollution by sending us back to the days of horses and buggies, or maybe human powered pull-carts with wooden wheels. Due to the financialization and hollowing out of the real economy, this is also quite likely to happen some fine day very soon. Unfortunately, it will not stop the climate change on a short timeline. By the time the planet recovers,humans and most living things might well be history.

So….most days I dream of leaving my easy life behind. I fantasize about buying a big sailboat and living out my last days living onboard, Sailing to the islands I love, and then if and when the collapse does come, trying to find some out-of-the-way place far from wars and dying cities, to try to make a go of it in what will truly be a New World.

It’s quite the dichotomy, this modern life. So many good things have come my way. So many bad things just over the horizon. And, of course, one can see that those two sides of the coin are completely related. So much of what I enjoy comes at the expense of some poor sod eking out a miserable existence in some shithole country that wasn’t a shithole until the corporate barons who run the world turned it into one, in the pursuit of selling me stuff like nice cars with seat heaters, and good coffee.

Certain concerned scientists and poets have long known this was coming. I am blessed and cursed to live on the cusp of a great unraveling. I am literally living on the very brink. I weep for my children.

——————

Nothing is more frustrating to me about the collapse blogosphere than the tendency for ordinary people to sort themselves into political groups based on their good intentions and belief systems.

I have read plenty of good writers who do get it…that collapse isn’t avoidable by changing whatever form of government we have, or our enemies have, or our rivals have. Please try to get past that kind of simple-mindedness. I just ain’t that simple folks.

The world is run by powerful people who control people, assets, and armies.

America is a failing Republic. It’s run completely by rich oligarchs and the politicians they buy, usually before elections, but also after, as has been the case with Trump, who ran as a populist but immediately sold his soul to the highest bidders, post-election.

The Soviet Union  was a Communist state that failed spectacularly in 1989, and now it’s controlled by a single despotic strong man, Vladimir Putin, who took over the primary state, Russia,  after the drunk Yeltsin failed to establish a democratic form of government. They still have a legislature and pretend to be a democratic communist/socialist state, but it’s a sham. Putin’s rivals and challengers end up in prison or have fatal accidents.

Although the systems of government are different, people in both countries are brought up to love their countries without question and the people of both countries, in these desperate times, crave a strong man to take control and solve all their problems.

Russians love Putin, who presides over a completely corrupt kleptocracy. They are mostly ignorant, clueless dumb fucks who are grateful to have heat during the bitter Russian winter, some basic foodstuffs, and  a little vodka to ease their pain.

Americans, increasingly left out of the advances of the digital age due to poor public school educations and the shiftlessness that comes with thinking the world owes them a living, have rallied behind Trump, who is a huckster and a liar who got elected in an election that surprised almost everyone, himself included. Now he is busy auctioning off favors to super-rich American kleptocrats, who call themselves capitalists. The younger generation of pampered digital early adapters dream of a benevolent socialist state that will give them a house and public transportation instead of just a cell phone and a job waiting tables. So….maybe in the US, if BAU persists a few more years, the poles might reverse. Especially if the trailer trash who love Trump all die off from shooting up fentanyl, and the hispanic fast breeders decide to start voting in elections.

It won’t matter. Collapse is baked in.

Pick any other country and the story is the same.

Britain is going their own version of Trump populism. Failing.

Most of Europe is socialist. Failing, although they have a few bright spots left.

South Africa flipped from white dominated Right Wing to black dominated Marxist. Failing faster every day.

China was hard core communist, tried to initiate market reforms, turned into a new kind of oligarchy that even now is consolidating under a new strong man. Failing.

Wake up, you idiots. It isn’t the form of government. It’s declining resources, climate change, hugely wasteful programs of all kinds, and sinister 21st century war machines getting ready to run amok.

Image result for staring into the abyss



37 Comments on "Living At The Height Of Civilization — Staring Into The Abyss"

  1. onlooker on Thu, 15th Mar 2018 7:37 pm 

    Yep. In one word Overshoot. We are a species deeply into overshoot of our earthly environment

  2. Davy on Thu, 15th Mar 2018 8:59 pm 

    We have always been staring into the abyss. Lately we have had a stretch of hubris combined with delusion with luck mixed in. We left our humanity behind as we modernized. We told ourselves there was no longer an abyss but there has always been an abyss. The abyss can be your friend. If you befriend the abyss it becomes a mentor. The isolated ego is its own worst enemy until it embraces the abyss.

  3. Theedrich on Thu, 15th Mar 2018 11:56 pm 

    “If it bleeds, it leads”:  the most exaggerated estimate of young and old murdered or committing suicide by guns is occasionally stretched to a couple of thousand per year — in a nation of over 300 million.

    At the same time, the number of U.S. deaths (never mind lives ruined) by drug overdose is expected to be around 70,000 in 2018.  The number seems to be growing by about ten thousand per year.

    While the Demonic Party, RINOs and the Yid-controlled media wail and gnash their teeth over guns as if they were malevolent extraterrestrial life forms, those “opinion leaders” mysteriously pay only minor attention to the vastly more numerous narcodeaths.

    The brutal reality is that the Left considers the spreading opiate-addiction epidemic to be simply a cost of doing business.  Because halting the horror would reduce their political power.  And taxes on such precursor inebriants as even “recreational” marijuana feed state legislatures.

    Drug addiction and its causes have been studied to death.  We know, for instance, that marijuana is an entry drug to addiction by stronger narcotics (as well as causing vehicular deaths by drivers under its “recreational” influence).  We know that large portions of the lethal substances pouring into the U.S. from Mexico, China, and other outhouse lands, are often introduced by “undocumented” wannabe Democrats from those outlands.  We also know that the acceptance of opiates by youth is due to the arrogance among the young promoted by “rights-advocate” groups on the Left and their media puppets, in addition to the subliminal subversion by the ad industry.  Similarly, we know about the suspicious involvement of the medical and pharmaceutical industries in this dance of death.

    But none of this matters.  Because the only thing of importance is political control of a nation slowly sinking into madness.

    In many southeast Asian countries, distribution or import of banned narcotics is punished severely, sometimes even by death.  In contrast, in the U.S., the punishment is light or even non-existent (because, it is claimed, the perpetrator had a bad childhood — sniff, sob).  And the Left will make sure it stays that way.

    According to reports, many of the deadliest ingredients (e.g., fentanyl/carfentanyl, etc.) come via mail, often transshipped through Mexico from China.  Allegedly, our leaders have pressed that nation to stop this criminal activity.  Or so they say.

    But China is a dictatorship.  Dictatorships have much more power over the actions of their masses than have western democracies.  Presumably the Chink Politburo could put an end to the death-by-mail business if they really wanted to.

    It is, thus, hard to avoid the suspicion that China, which intends to replace the U.S. as global hegemon by 2049, is secretly allowing this postal commerce to continue in order to eviscerate America from within — and to make money while doing so.  (Remember the Opium Wars waged by England & Co. against a weak China in the nineteenth century?  China remembers.)

    Then there is also opium-producing Afghanistan, whence comes yet more poison.  But “our” government allows this because the “poor” Afghan farmers need to grow poppies to survive, and the Deep State needs their compliance to fight the Allahist nasties.

    And so it goes.  Yankee-style, dysgenics-loving democracy is a suicide pact.

    On the Nietzsche quote:  “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.” — Menschliches, Allzumenschliches, Aph. 146

    (“He who fights with monsters should take care to see that in the process he does not himself become a monster.  And if you stare into an abyss for long, the abyss will stare back into you.”)

  4. GregT on Fri, 16th Mar 2018 12:10 am 

    “But China is a dictatorship. Dictatorships have much more power over the actions of their masses than have western democracies.”

    Sounds about right.

  5. Boat on Fri, 16th Mar 2018 12:11 am 

    Threewrech

    Plenty of red Republicans dealing those drugs in Red states. Health is a personal responsibility along with drugs. We don’t need a government getting mixed in our business. Even though it may make some sense I don’t like being fined for not wearing seat belt. Legislation for “the greater good is a slippery slope”.

  6. MASTERMIND on Fri, 16th Mar 2018 12:14 am 

    Theo

    Did you mother not hug you enough? Take your nonsense to alex jones website. I think you are lost you dipshit.

  7. Boat on Fri, 16th Mar 2018 12:19 am 

    Screw China and any other dictatorships. Voted on rule of law sucks but comes as close as it gets limited freedom. Every issue like guns, human rights, pollution control has to be a messy continual fight.

  8. GregT on Fri, 16th Mar 2018 12:28 am 

    “Screw China and any other dictatorships.”

    Who needs a dictatorship when you have The Donald™.

    You’re fired Boat.

  9. Boat on Fri, 16th Mar 2018 12:50 am 

    You think XI has a press like the Cheeto? Lol Trump would love to run China

  10. GregT on Fri, 16th Mar 2018 1:09 am 

    “Lol Trump would love to run China”

    Trump has enough on his plate already Boat.

  11. DerHundistlos on Fri, 16th Mar 2018 2:44 am 

    Theedrich,

    Why are you lamenting? The 46 year long War on Drugs continues unabated to the tune of $37 billion a year (excluding cost of incarcerating non-violent drug offenders), and now that your hero and our Dear Leader is in charge, the War on Drugs has a powerful new advocate.

    Meanwhile, enlightened nations, like Portugal, discovered that doing the same thing year after year with the same result is not a viable long-term strategy. Pure genius. So sixteen years ago Portugal decriminalized all drugs. The results are now in and how. Nobody dies from drug overdoses, the rate of addiction has declined dramatically, and the costs to society have been halved. Source: type the information into your browser for verification.

    Will the US follow the lead of Portugal? Hell no. The Police/Prison/Republican Industrial Complex would never allow such an abomination.

  12. DerHundistlos on Fri, 16th Mar 2018 2:52 am 

    Thee,

    And what of the 88.000 annual alcohol related deaths (National Institute of Health)? Alcohol kills many more than the hype you’re spewing, yet you conveniently overlook booze. Why?

    https://www.niaaa.nih.gov/alcohol-health/overview-alcohol-consumption/alcohol-facts-and-statistics

  13. DerHundistlos on Fri, 16th Mar 2018 2:56 am 

    The brutal reality is that the Right considers the spreading alcohol-addiction epidemic to be simply a cost of doing business. Because halting the horror would reduce their political power.

    Turnabout is fair play, Thee-wretch.

  14. dave thompson on Fri, 16th Mar 2018 4:29 am 

    Drugs are an issue between doctors and patients. To bad though the issue has been criminalized.

  15. deadly on Fri, 16th Mar 2018 4:50 am 

    Down in Deadwood in South Dakota, there is a, or maybe was now, an underground tunnel adjoining the basement of a downtown building. You would walk through a basement door leading into an area that was an opium den for Chinese gold miners in the Black Hills of South Dakota. I have been there and seen them in person. After a short conversation to make friends with the owners of the souvenir shop, they lead me through the door leading to the old opium dens underground in Deadwood.

    Drugs have been here since man discovered what some plants can do. Jimson weed was used by the Hopi to tame an unruly brave. The alkaloids in the Jimson weed will make you think about it for a while.

    People have been huffing paint and sniffing glue for longer than I have been alive. The Chinks aren’t trying to ruin America.

    Give it up.

    Living at the height of civilization.

    Strike that.

    Living at the height of hypocrisy.

    Got my EV to take me there, all powered by wind turbines (built using fossil fuels up the wazoo to get them there), and then it’s all going to be teats up before anybody knows it.

    Life is just wonderful. So much fun, holy cow.

    Got a government that has a huge military that projects power the world over and I sleep good at night. Best insurance policy taxes can buy. The whole enchilada all in one.

    Gotta have an idiot president behind it all, uff da looey. A story the Fabulous Furry Freak Brothers could only dream up and make a nightmare a complete farce and comedy. Good for them, I hope they do.

    All adds up to cognitive dissonance.

    End of the freaking story.

  16. Davy on Fri, 16th Mar 2018 5:38 am 

    “Who needs a dictatorship when you have The Donald.”

    greggie, not bragging much on China these days are you? My wife has a very close friend that is 1st gen Chinese. She is disgusted by these events in China. You should be too but you don’t care. For you China is useful for your anti-Americanism.

  17. aa on Fri, 16th Mar 2018 5:49 am 

    Author is right that his children will pay dearly but forgot to mention one important thing – that he lives in stolen country where natives lived sustainable life without destroying its environment. Kleptocracy is main feature of the US from the start. Plus capitalism with its rapacious nature (that by the way leads to very quick depletion of natural resources) is not better than socialism with its ideas of seeking more just and less divided society. But it is hard to implement in practice and result are not always ideal, of course.

  18. Norman Pagett on Fri, 16th Mar 2018 6:32 am 

    quote from above——China, which intends to replace the U.S. as global hegemon by 2049—-

    er–no it won’t

    because there will not be sufficient energy in the global industrial system to allow that to happen

    fuel will be unaffordable by then

    https://extranewsfeed.com/no-matter-how-much-oil-is-down-there-it-still-costs-too-much-f7142428849b

  19. jwarner on Fri, 16th Mar 2018 6:47 am 

    Why did you bring children into this dying world?

  20. Davy on Fri, 16th Mar 2018 6:52 am 

    China has reached its pinnacle in a multipolar military and economic world where all nations are so interconnected they cannot survive trade are military confrontations without severe consequences. Those who constantly talk about WWIII or hegemony of any global power center are greatly deceived if they are promoting a winner. The worst on this board is our card caring Eurotard Nazi and his trusty sidekick enabler greggie. They live for the day the US is destroyed but dismiss any idea of the consequences. Consequences are dismissed because their extremism cannot accommodate such consequences.

    China is now a full fledge world power. The world as we know it cannot survive a collapsed China but the same is true of Asia with Europe and the US. We can add Russia to that list. The rest of the world while important does not wag the tail. It is these three centers of power for the foreseeable future that control the global destiny. We will survive together or die together. This is the consequence of global affluence. Affluence that was made possible by a global interconnected system and an affluence that will end when this powerful economic force ends. If you end affluence the condition of global overshoot of vital support networks and resources will end resulting in mass death. It is as simple as that for a very complex and complicated systematic arrangement. Extremist with fat agendas cannot pass under that bar.

  21. Davy on Fri, 16th Mar 2018 6:56 am 

    “Why did you bring children into this dying world?”

    This world is not dead yet. Ask any child if he is happy to be alive and most will say yes. Looking at the situation from a harsher pre-twentieth/twenty first century point of view then we understand children are important for a world without modernism. It is the children that survive that will power the future. Look at any farm from earlier times and you will see families.

  22. aa on Fri, 16th Mar 2018 7:41 am 

    Davy: There is no guarantee that anybody will survive. Lots of species went extinct and mankind could end up the same way. But maybe it will be better for the planet if aggressive and rapacious mankind disappears.

  23. Davy on Fri, 16th Mar 2018 8:16 am 

    Agreed but while we are here let’s live. As far as man’s extinction that is nature’s decision. I too sometimes feel Mother Nature would be better off without us yet that is our human projection onto nature as if she is human. She is not a human force although humanity is very much part of nature’s essence. Nature’s life effort is a balance between extinction and evolution. It seems we are an extinction species but we are still part of nature’s way and that way if beyond human understanding. Humans want to play exceptional but we are far from it. Our cleverness just deceives us into thinking we are special. In this way we are best to be humble and thankful for the moment.

  24. jawagord on Fri, 16th Mar 2018 8:17 am 

    This article should be filed under American Hubris.

    We have here someone who has lived a great life, has a house in the canyon, drives a EV car and now in the latter part of his life he’s all worried it will all be gone for the next generation? There are billions of people on the planet that have no such worries, because they have never had and can never hope to have what this person has had. Yet somehow these other billions of people have survived living a vastly lower standard of living. 8 years of Obama didn’t slow the rise of the seas and 4 or 8 years of Trump isn’t going to doom the planet.

  25. MASTERMIND on Fri, 16th Mar 2018 8:18 am 

    The reason people have kids is because they are ignorant of overshoot or they deny it..Most people at least in America are very unaware of environmental science issues.

  26. MASTERMIND on Fri, 16th Mar 2018 8:24 am 

    China showed up to the oil party after the cops have already been called out! Oops! Sucks for them!

  27. joe on Fri, 16th Mar 2018 8:53 am 

    I find the comments about the Russian people to be nothing but racist. They love Putin because he wanted to Make Russia Great Again. He’s even kinda doing it in Syria (though at the cost of thousands of dead Russian mercs). With the US fighting covert wars in deepest darkest Africa it truly has become no better than Belgium or good old Blighty at their best imperial do-goodering.
    Its not your fault America, your founders wanted to copy ancient Greece and Rome, guess what, they are. Including the hubris, loss of soul and finally identity.

  28. joe on Fri, 16th Mar 2018 8:56 am 

    Trust a materialist to think like that. People have kids usually cause they love their partner and want a family. Thats the kind of people who have a chance, not the non-multiplying feminazis who love abortions, not the homosexuals, it will be through love, normal love that people will have a chance. Suffering is the lot of humans, you would know that if you were Christian.

  29. fmr-paultard on Fri, 16th Mar 2018 9:31 am 

    joe please don’t enjoy supertards’ labor of love in term of intardweb and safe electricity and A/C and say no i’m not into material possessions. it was a long time ago but not that long ago that tard brains can’t remember when madonna sang “material girl”.

    please dont’ demigrate women it offends me. treat them as street dogs and asses and you got a _religion_ and you know supertards enjoy killing up to 50,000 recently. i hope supertards will continue to do an excellent job on those who disrespect women

    the hypocrisy is just too much.

    Love material posessions and the goodness that supertards give us, amen.

  30. JuanP on Fri, 16th Mar 2018 10:17 am 

    People have kids because they fuck without thinking of the consequences. If we could prevent unwanted pregnancies we could stop global population growth. We are simply a bunch of horny motherfuckers. I realized I was a horny motherfucker at a very young age and I didn’t want to produce biological offspring so I had a Vasectomy. But voluntarily getting a Vasectomy requires critical thinking skills that most men lack. That is why the human population grew by more than 80 million last year. This will NOT end well! I understood how this would end when I was a child. As Bob Marley sang “Total destruction is the only solution, and there ain’t no use, no one can stop it now”. Human beings are making this planet a living hell hole and I wouldn’t want no child of mine to be raised in this world, but to each their own. Most people will NEVER get it!

  31. Sissyfuss on Fri, 16th Mar 2018 10:17 am 

    It was the best of times, it was the worst of times. Such is our modern day existence. As we pursue those activities that maximize our dopamine hits, be they material or chemical and as these continued activities nullify our ability to process efficiently the reduced levels of pleasure chemicals in our brains we, the addicts will continue to pursue a perfect high that does not exist. Our pursuit is the reason for overshoot and its concomitant horrors of biosphere destruction and resultant extinction. Buddha stated that desire is the cause of our pain but our modern philosophyies tell us heathy self interest and stroked egos are the gist of life. Vanity of vanities, all is vanity.

  32. Boat on Fri, 16th Mar 2018 10:43 am 

    Sisfuss

    You need to get a simple hobby. Maybe try watching every game of an NBA team. A good mix of winning and losing will trigger those dopamine hits and are harmless enough.

  33. Sissyfuss on Fri, 16th Mar 2018 11:41 am 

    Boast, I have substituted Shaudenfreund for happiness because it is much more entertwined with world I live in. Go back to your Netflix and Walmart TV dinners and a good chaser of whatever hops piss was on sale. Delusion is bliss.

  34. ????????????????????????????????? on Fri, 16th Mar 2018 2:46 pm 

    The only good thing that humans are doing for the planet are fertilizing it with co2. And you faggots need to freeze and starve.

  35. Wolfie52 on Fri, 16th Mar 2018 7:22 pm 

    Wow, the kids are still in the basement arguing with the same 5-10 who try to claim THEIR way in the abyss is THE correct way…wow.

  36. DerHundistlos on Fri, 16th Mar 2018 8:34 pm 

    Peter Tosh added to Bob Marley’s lyrics:

    And there has
    Got to be a solution to this here pollution, right now, yeah
    Gotta find a solution to this pollution, promises won’t help
    You gotta find a solution to this pollution, we’ve been waiting
    For a solution to this pollution

  37. Go Speed Racer on Sat, 17th Mar 2018 10:11 pm 

    Republicans solved pollution a long time ago.

    And it’s very, very simple:
    The Solution To Pollution is Dilution.

    Like, take Hanford Nuclear Waste Dump.
    If we had just dumped all that waste into
    the ocean, it would all be diluted down
    to nothing. And that land would be clean
    and tidy enough for a nice river front park.

    With picnic tables an swing sets.

    “The Solution To Pollution is Dilution”.

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