Mistakes have been Made

It’s one of my favorite phrases: “Mistakes have been made.” They are legion. I’ve made most of them myself. I continue along the same, error-ridden path.

I suspect I’ll make my final mistake immediately before I die. It might be the one that kills me.

You’ve likely heard this one, too: “Live and learn.” I’m convinced many people, perhaps most, engage only in the former. And one could question whether they’re truly living, or merely putting off dying. Living is hard enough. Learning is nearly impossible. Most notably, it hurts the ego. I’ll leave the last word on mistakes, at least for this post, to German-American journalist and satirist H.L. Mencken:

No one in this world, so far as I know — and I have searched the records for years, and employed agents to help me — has ever lost money by underestimating the intelligence of the great masses of the plain people. Nor has any one ever lost public office thereby. The mistake that is made always runs the other way. Because the plain people are able to speak and understand, and even, in many cases, to read and write, it is assumed that they have ideas in their heads, and an appetite for more. This assumption is folly. They dislike ideas, for ideas make them uncomfortable.

I’ve posted below, verbatim, an essay I penned for this space on 14 February 2008. It was titled, “Launching a Lifeboat.” As I predicted then, times have changed, and not for the better. To say our species is in trouble would be an epic understatement.

It’s a sad day, week, and month. We’re selling our beloved house in our beloved neighborhood. We know and like all the neighbors, and we have the spectacular Sonoran Desert in our back yard. We get to walk the dog through that desert off-leash twice a day (more, when she gets her way).

It’s the only house we’ve ever owned, and we’ve lived in it for the last 18 years. During those years, I’ve seen two promotions, falling from untenured assistant professor to radical tenured full professor. And two sabbatical leaves, one to Berkeley, the other to a spectacular property owned by The Nature Conservancy adjacent to the mud hut. And a leave of absence to the Washington, D.C. metropolitan area, where I worked for The Nature Conservancy. And a few junkets to foreign lands. And 18 of our 24 years of marriage, more than half our adult lives. And the death of our beloved first dog, and the deaths of a few family members. And the many simple joys of living in the Sonoran Desert, from curve-billed thrashers in the backyard palo verde tree to a handful of hummingbirds feeding on the nearby flowers, from frost on the creosote to sunsets and starry nights.

We cried half the night. And swore the other half.

Most people wouldn’t even like the house, much less appreciate it. They certainly wouldn’t live in it on purpose, if they had our combined incomes. It’s strictly stick-and-stucco, emblematic of the poor architectural design for which the region is infamous. And it’s a 1,000-square-foot house on a 4,000-square-foot lot on the edge of the city, too small for the gargantuan tastes of the average, over-indulged American. It’s all one level, and incredibly low-maintenance, purposely planned for two people to grow old in. That was the plan: To grow old together, in the house we love, in the neighborhood we love, enjoying our lot in life and the opportunity for occasional travel to remote lands.

Time for Plan B.

If civilization doesn’t fall apart within the next couple years, I’m in real trouble with my partner. As if she hasn’t had enough grief in her life lately, given the deaths of her mother, father, and uncle.

If civilization does fall apart within the next couple years, we’re all in real trouble. And not just with my partner, either.

Seems I’ve backed myself into a lose-lose situation. You’d think I’d be accustomed to that by now, but I still hate it when it happens.

I suppose Bill Clinton was right: People like change in general, but not in particular. This is particular change, and I don’t like it.

Living in two worlds is great in theory. But having to choose one world over the other is very, very difficult, especially when the choice runs counter to the status quo.

It’s time to push away from the shore, to let the winds of change catch the sails of our leaky boat. It’s time to trust in ourselves, our new neighbors, and the Earth that sustains us all. Painful though it might be, it’s time to abandon the ship of empire in exchange for a lifeboat.
After all, the time to dig a well is not when you’re thirsty.

According to the Buddha, “life is suffering.” And suffering is better than the alternative, at least for now. May we all find solace in our suffering in the months and years ahead.

______

Apparently I survived the cutting-room floor for a hit piece on me, courtesy of the unlikely duo of Rupert Murdoch and Bill Nye. Deniers of abrupt climate change rejoice! I’ll be featured in a televised episode of National Geographic on 1 November 2015. Footage includes Bill Nye at the mud hut. Details can be found here. Commercial for the show is a click away.

EXPLORER: Bill Nye's Global Meltdown from Castle Pictures on Vimeo.

Catch Nature Bats Last on the radio with Mike Sliwa and Guy McPherson. To catch us live, tune in every Tuesday at 3:00 p.m. Eastern time, or catch up in the archives here. If you prefer the iTunes version, including the option to subscribe, you can click here.
______

Looking for San Francisco Bay Area folks to raise $$$$ to bring Guy to San Francisco. Please contact amyvegan@gmail.com if you are willing to donate towards Guy’s travel here.

Comments 105

  • My brother and I walk the swamp forests of the Pascagoula River Basin. Last week we followed the course of a dry stream bed in this drought-stricken region. Among the network of exposed roots and twisted tupelo, one may see the remains of massive cypress stumps, smoothed and polished by decades of rushing waters. Lords of the Southern wilderness, they weathered countless hurricanes, shadowed Native hunters, housed birds whose kind are now gone from the earth; only their bones now remain, in mute testimony to industrial civilization.

    Ghosts are everywhere.

    Mistakes have been made.

  • Great post and very true.

    The quote of H.L. Mencken also applies quite well to scientists and TPTB.

    A Paper From Hansen et al. Is Now Open For Discussion – 2

  • My dog makes mistakes. I plan shit out, then fuck it up.
    (half kidding)
    I’m making a mistake right now.

  • hi – I follow your work now partly for the only somewhat described personal story you are living out – I started reading you for the climate change/impending doom info & think – realized I have thought since I was 16 years old or so, in 1970 – yes, probably human civilization as we in the USA know it is facing some BIG CHANGES – but ok, what else is new – I find I have to be careful reading you as the despair is so palpable – so personal – do you feel there is any meaning to be found in existence? – I’m not even sure about the “most people are really dumb” line of thought – as yes, it’s clearly true – but are they (we) despicable then? I guess I’m writing this little note to say from the depths of Facebook’s blessed anonymity and human interaction I wish you some peace – you and yours – which is ours – together in this story with an unknown ending – p.s. I like your mordant humor – p.p.s. take care

  • The Buddha said a bit more after he said “Life is suffering.” Three more things, in fact.

    1. Life is suffering.
    2. The cause of suffering ius attachment.
    3. It is possible to end attachment, and thereby cease suffering.
    4. Following the Eightfold Path is one route to ending attachment and thereby ceasing to suffer.

    So the alternative to suffering is not being dead, but simply giving up ones attachments to how things “should” be, but never are. One doesn’t need to become a Buddhist, but one does need to give up one’s attachments.

    Unfortunately, as Eckhart Tolle discovered while developing his concept of the pain body, most people are addicted to suffering. It makes them feel “real”. They believe that the only alternative to suffering is death or escapism, and since they recognize that escapism isn’t real, they pile on the suffering to remind themselves that they’re alive. They believe that any technique that reduces or eliminates suffering while leaving the sufferer still alive is an illusion.

    And THAT is a mistake. An enormous, life-diminishing mistake.

  • Humans throughout history and all over the world have always been dumb enough to believe in just 2 things, Life After Death and Money. Both of these things are not real, they are human constructs. That is a big mistake. The one thing my larger than life ego protects me from is reality. So, who’s perfect?

    Kevin Anderson Vs. Naomi Klein

    Kevin Anderson Vs. Naomi Klein from collapse

  • @PAUL C

    your emphatic, bold THAT implies to me THAT you are quite “ATTACHED” to
    your conclusion to this theory
    believe as you wish….
    you might be right
    but
    would not right be a subjective
    something one is “attached” to?
    or
    there is an absolute and eternal right
    which also means a wrong
    a dead wrong
    per se ~ ~ ~

  • .
    Just sittin’ on this runaway train, staring out the window, with a cat on my lap.
    .

  • @mt

    Whatever gets you though the night. I’ve never claimed to be unattached. But I know an error when I see one.

  • “Future temperature in southwest Asia projected to exceed a threshold for human adaptability”

    http://www.nature.com/nclimate/journal/vaop/ncurrent/full/nclimate2833.html

    “Our results expose a specific regional hotspot where climate change, in the absence of significant mitigation, is likely to severely impact human habitability in the future.”

    …Mitigation, likely, impact habitability, future…..

    But, but we civilized humans are so clever, we just need nuclear powered ice breakers with “fricken laser beams” attached to their decks to vaporize the arctic atmospheric methane while we wait it all out underneath the oceans in our nuclear submarines….

    Mistakes sure have been made, and it seems we will go on making them until our ability to make any further mistakes is “mitigated” by nature.

  • Civilisation didn’t fall apart by 2010, and we’re all in trouble.

    TARP
    SDR
    QE
    Abenomics
    LIBOR
    ZIRP
    Coal
    Tar sands
    Fracking
    Boondoggles
    Deepwater Horizon
    Fukushima
    Corn syrup
    GE
    Obesity
    War
    Fraud, deceit, floods, droughts and death-by-a-thousand-cuts.

    Caron dioxide and methane.

    They keep doing it till they can’t.

  • By definition a “mistake” is different from “depraved heart murder” (Oil-Qaeda & MOMCOM Conspire To Commit Depraved-Heart Murder).

    No need to conflate the two, because that would be a sign of Stockholm Syndrome.

  • Yesterday Milendia posted Malcolm Light’s recent alarming prediction; 6C WITHIN 13 YEARS!

    “Previous estimates of when the average atmospheric global temperature anomaly increase would reach 6°C was 2034.7, by which time massive global extinction would be proceeding. The new corrected time for this event is 2034.7 – 6 = 2028.7 which is 13 years in the future. During the major Permian Extinction event, which was caused by a massive methane build-up in the atmosphere, the mean surface atmospheric temperature increased by 5°C over 13 years.”

    “As the present mean global surface atmospheric temperature is already greater than 1°C hotter than the mean, we will be looking at at least a 6°C temperature increase by 2028 with its associated global extinction event.”

    ———

    Light has a personal website called Survival Acres. On Oct. 5, 2015 Light posted his personal disgust with our civilization’s rampant deceiving propaganda with the title; “WEAPONS OF MASS DISTRACTION.”

    The following excerpts demonstrate Light’s agony & despair as an earth scientist, especially about the constant blaring propaganda with its lying & deception.

    *** I’m weary of wading through the incessant levels of bullshit that passes for human dialogue. A great deal of what people are concerned about is based upon assumptions, propaganda and invalidated belief systems.

    The species appears fatally flawed to me, incapable of extracting itself from ancient superstitions. Lives are ruined, destroyed, distracted and deceived, year after year as old lies get retreads and new lies get forgotten. Why do we go on doing this? It’s clear as day that none of this garbage can possibly be true. But there are indeed those who continue to insist otherwise and will do everything that can to make it all come true.

    Tearing down false idols doesn’t bring hope, it breeds anger and resentment. The enlightenment and education that we seek cannot flourish in stubborn minds that cling to illusion and deception.

    This was in response to the idiocy I saw online about the Blood Moon, John Hagee and the complete silliness people engaged in while making that multimillionaire even richer. It’s time to examine the real motivation that allows these ridiculous stories to gain so much attention (it’s called propaganda and brainwashing and it’s all around you).

    ——

    For many years, I’ve been in an online battle against the propaganda promoters. It’s been a losing battle because there are too many people now who show all the indications of being seriously brainwashed. They’ve lost the ability to actually think, pose a logical argument or even have a reasonable discussion, and seem to be completely unable to see through the many layers of false assumptions, misconceptions, false claims, conjecture and straw arguments being published online today.

    My goal, as it were, in pointing out these propaganda liars has been to break the programming being promoted and to lay down a more realistic foundation of what is really worth paying attention to.

    I’m doing this entirely on my own with no support, motivated by only the general disgust that I hold for liars, deceivers, promoters and profiteers that have literally taken over the entire online discourse.

    Connedspiracy theory sells. All kinds of things. Hundreds of millions of dollars are being sold each year by fear mongering shills who are manufacturing an entirely false narrative. The entire population of the country has been bamboozled into believing some really outrageous ideas that have zero basis in facts or reality, only because “somebody” said it was true. That somebody is often a celebrity, who often as not, is simply dead wrong and is being paid immense sums of money to promote total bullshit.

    a) making certain people very rich;
    b) perpetuate the mass distractions and deceptions of millions of people;
    c) to deflect from any honest inquiry on what is really occurring in our world;
    d) to defuse any mass movement or organization or effort, rendering any resistance completely ineffectual and powerless.

    There is now so much propaganda, and so much promotion of propaganda in all forms of media today that calling this a “weapon of mass distraction” would very accurate.

    After over two decades of personal effort to counteract and combat this brainwashing, I admit again to failure. The rising tide of “stupid” is drowning out any possible rescue of the species from self-annihilation. ***

    ——-

    I suggest that we can readily apply Light’s contemptuous & truthful phrases to many of the most sacred “stories” that we have grown to accept as holy writ.

    Light’s 6C in 13 years piece is first. “Weapons of Mass Distraction” is below.

    http://survivalacres.com/blog/

  • Philosophers -vs- Physicists

    Frederick the Great said, “The greatest punishment he could
    wish his country would be to be ruled over by philosophers.”

    Most physicists follow the gravity is an attraction principle. They can’t prove it, but they believe it. And they are mistaken. Gravity is a repulsion, which is why you weigh more at the North Pole than you do at the Equator.

    What we are suggested here is a strong correlation between wayward thinking and fiat money.

  • Gerald Spezio, Survival Acres is not Malcolm Light’s website, as indicated here

  • Babajingo~

    I think a Spring wedding would be nice, don’t you? In Hawaii on the beach (of doom) in Waipio? Of course, we might not make it that far in the future…What does your fiancé(e) think? The papayas are delicious that time of year. <3

    http://nukeprofessional.blogspot.com/2015/10/fukushima-is-here-this-month-epa-shut.html

  • WTI $43.81

    Brent $47.41

    http://www.oil-price.net/

    Well below half 2011-2014 price levels. A year of falling off the cliff has got to be hurting. But a significant rise in energy costs would pulverise what remains of the global economy.

    That which is unsustainable is not sustained.

  • Only a bonehead posts quotes about deception & deceit, but attributes those quotes to the wrong person.

    It is a serious & stupid error. I really fooled myself.

    Talk about “reading in” what one wants …

    I fell in love with the quotes because they were so on point for our times.

    “Be careful not to fool yourself because you are the easiest person to fool.”

    I hope that is only a temporary lapse.

    Apologies to all, most especially Malcolm Light.

  • IS THIS HOW YOU FEEL? Website for scientist & university climate professionals. It should include Dr. Mc Pherson. Here is an excerpt from long article on EPA dept newsfeed:

    A senior fellow at Stanford’s Woods Institute for the Environment, Dr. Root has spent the past two decades unraveling the thread between climate change and the eventual mass extinctions of countless species of plants, animals — and, yes, humans. “That’s a tough, tough thing to cope with,” Root says in a weary, jagged voice. There’s more. When the gray-haired bird watcher shares her End of Days findings, she’s often met with personal attacks; naysayers hurl their disagreement and disdain, complete with name-calling and threats from politicians. But the absolute worst part of her job? We’re not listening. “It’s harder than hell to carry that,” says Root.

    That a Stanford University acclaimed scientist will say h-e-l-l to a reporter and use words like cope is a sign of changing times. Not only are we living on a warming planet but a progressively emotive one. It started with parents coddling their kids (no more advice to “just suck it up”), then Bill Nuy explaining with emojis (punctuation isn’t enough) and now it’s climatologists tweeting “we’re f’d” and field researchers speaking up about climate depression (pretraumatic stress disorder.)

    There is a paradigm shift taking place in the field of science with the recognition that even the most stoic minds of the world need a way to process their doomsday findings. All of this is fueling a debate that’s raged since before Galileo and until recently landed on one central question: What place does human emotion have in scientific reasoning? But in 2015, there’s another layer that’s been schlepped into the controversial heap: What do you do when your job is to document the end of the world?

    PHIL & SATISH: EPA monitoring of Pacific Radiation hot spots was de-funded in late 2011. Private monitoring is done by Scripps La Jolla, U.C. Santa Barbara, Dr. Ken Busseler Woods Hole. Canada Ocean sciences, Alaska fish & game & Heal the Bay. Mexico’s richest man Carlos Slim has also funded a team for a Yacht club and other people who do want lab results on rad levels before they fish & swim. I will occasionally post those results just in case a few people do want to know the data.

    BABA bad sheep Inhoff & old goat Mitch McConnell are offering lumps of coal & merchandise of doubt in a bridezilla bidding war! Atomic war bride. Might as well go on a gallows humor note. Only radiation remains.

    DANIEL, your comment the other day sticks in my head. I read everyone with great interest & respect. A month ago I began to understand Gerald, after ARTLEADS pointed out that all forms of denial are a part of our extinction. Holocaust denial, 9-11 denial, climate denial, Nuclear reactor decommissioning red tape. Death by a thousand paper cuts!!!!

    PAT – Just sitting on this sinking ship, like a dog on leash, looking out at the horizon.

  • Mencken wrote, “No one in this world … has ever lost money by underestimating the intelligence of the great masses …”

    Whenever I’m tempted to think otherwise, this short scene comes to mind (and, god help me, always makes me smile):

  • Phil Morrison says: “Gravity is a repulsion, which is why you weigh more at the North Pole than you do at the Equator”.

    Phil, you should stay away from science, or do more wiki searches.

    Gravity is an inverse square attraction. You weigh more at the north pole than at the equator because the north pole is closer to the earth’s center.

  • There is about to be a roll-out of Nuclear power here in Afraidia, or can I call it Irradia.

    ‘Alan Finkel , ‘electric planet’ visionary, expected to become Australia’s next chief scientist’

    http://www.abc.net.au/news/2015-10-26/dr-finkel-expected-to-become-next-chief-scientist/6884672

    And the clincher…

    ‘Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull to appoint nuclear power advocate Dr Alan Finkel as chief scientist’

    http://www.theaustralian.com.au/news/prime-minister-malcolm-turnbull-to-appoint-nuclear-power-advocate-dr-alan-finkel-as-chief-scientist/story-e6frg6n6-1227581950975

    Here we go with all the justifications for killing power…err…Nuclear power, because we really do need more electricity made from boiling water through fission.

    Todays Pickings:

    WTI Crude Oil: $44.60 per barrel

    Brent Crude Oil: $47.99

    Uranium: $39.25 per pound

    Plutonium: $4,000 per gram

    No citations here sorry.

    Dear reader… ‘madness’ is what links the final stages of all civilizations that neglect human scale connections to the land and honourable relations with each other.

    😉

  • Dr. Epiphany – I’m going to add a bit of nuclear fire news that is not on the excellent info that is included on NukeProfessional.blogspot.com

    Senator Maria Chappelle can not get any main stream news channel to run this story:

    St. Louis Oct 18, 2015: The world is on the brink of a nuclear disaster as fire rages towards a cache of Cold War nukes — A secret emergency plan has been drawn up as an underground (methane) blaze creeps towards a waste dump containing radioactive waste from the Manhattan Project. The leaked NRC report to Senator Chappelle warns a “catastrophic event” will be triggered if the nuclear material is ignited… radioactive smoke could erupt over the densely-populated area of St Louis.

    Yesterdays nuclear waste explosion in NEVADA is limited to local news channels. Full hazmat teams are at both burns yet there is a national news block on these events. I think the radiation spike I copied direct off our security monitor might include the St. Louis slow burn.

    DREDD – thank you for the extinction of Manzanillo link.

  • Christopher. Yes, that neck of the woods is nice, at least what I saw in the 90’s. I would take a week in January or Feb in the Desoto Forests. Listening to the aircraft, helicopter and tank coordinated targetting manuevers that some of my anti-nuclear friends shooed away from Superior Forest was a negative, but one could extrapolate some of what it was like 50 to 100 years ago. Totally different from ‘Driftless zone” or riverine forests in Iowa.

    If I make it down again to L’Arche Mobile via bus, I really ought to see that those forests at twilight, for it is deep twilight now.

    Oaks all lost their leaves in like two days here in Winnipeg, the ubiquitous elms still have some dry colourless leaves. One relatively very warm October here, that many just think of as nice and do not reference the years when the hard killing frost would arrive in mid September and precipitation came in all forms, except thunderstorms.

    The drum fish is supposedly quite adept at eating zebra mussels, which are finally here. Unfortunately they are unable to get big enough to crunch them until 10 years old. Would be nice if we all quit keeping drum caught. Channel cats up here are similar to humans in one regard, the females are unable to reproduce until 14 years old, it is a harsh enviornment for them, but they do thrive. But I am too depressed to fish the last two years, beans and tofu are my friends.

    peace out y’all

  • @Ken Provost said,

    “Gravity is an inverse square attraction. You weigh more at the north pole than at the equator because the north pole is closer to the earth’s center.”

    Yes Ken, very good.

    But, did wiki tell you why the north pole is closer to the earth’s center?

    ALL – I apologize for grammar error in previous post.

  • Wester,

    You carve up the granite fascist brain with a butter knife as well as anyone I know.

  • paul

    errors:

    i see them, too
    sometimes

    peace

    I would like to sleep, some nights i don’t
    i always make it thru a night
    so far….

  • At 54:00, the Rev. Chris Hedges speaks:

    http://www.democracynow.org/

  • ‘the alternative to suffering is not being dead, but simply giving up ones attachments to how things “should” be, but never are. One doesn’t need to become a Buddhist, but one does need to give up one’s attachments.’ -paul c.

    i’ve always thought the idea of giving up attachments meant more than that. it means giving up love, because that’s what love is, bottom line: attachment. if u love anything or anyone, naturally u’ll feel attached. giving up attachment is giving up what makes life most fulfilling and meaningful, as well as the cause of much suffering. giving up attachments is giving up on living.

  • Hi Guy,

    I am writing to you from Sydney Australia
    Thank-you for your diligent,honest work and your deep humility
    I have been following your work since 2013.
    My step father who is 92, was a marine biologist,he worked in Antarctica in the 50s, and worked in Florida in the seventies,he ran the institute there and came back to Australia in the eighties to run Aims.He has written frequent papers and Alerted me to climate change long ago, he met Nixon at the Whitehouse when the denial was getting underway.
    I read Walden when i was sixteen and have seen this coming my whole life,but without your work would not be so enlightened,Thank-you again
    Just to say if you are in Australia please look me up. you are welcome to stay with us.

  • What’s important in love is the compassion part, not the attachment part. It is possible to give up attachment without giving up compassion.

    Centrifugal force from planetary rotation causes the Earth to bulge outward at the equator. The mass displaced outwards is compensated for by inward displacement at the poles. it is helpful to keep an eye and an ear open in class in high school.

  • Read a book called The Corporation.

    Key element was that CEOs are legally obliged to rape the environment if it benefits the shareholders.

    They are legally obliged to not help the environment when possible as they could be help liable if it affects profits.

  • Read a book called “The End Of The Line”.

    Deep sea fishing / dredging was discussed as being in use which is taking nets and dragging it across the ocean floor.

    A lot of what is caught is put back, dead, as unwanted bycatch.

    The memorable quote for me in the book was how this dredging practice was described as being like dragging a large net across land, and all the corresponding damage it would do, which of course undersea is not visible.

    All of these hidden damages are not factored into the products price on the shelf which is why they get away with it.

    This is proof the “leaders” around the world should be held accountable for their incompetence before they lead us into hell.

  • Hold on. Are we saying that Arctic News is also misquoting Light?

    https://arctic-news.blogspot.ca/

    Malcolm Light: “As the present mean global surface atmospheric temperature is already greater than 1°C hotter than the mean, we will be looking at at least a 6°C temperature increase by 2028 with its associated global extinction event.”

    Light’s prediction requires an average increase every year between now and 2028 of 0.48C, a rate so fast that it would exceed that last 40 years of warming in less than a year and half.

    Fastest increase for any year or stretch of years so far has been the El nino year increase from 1997-8 of 0.14C.

    2015 will likely see an increase like ‘97 to ‘98, but that’s not anywhere near fast enough to meet Light’s forecast.

    The fastest increase in any decade has been 0.20C.

    It would take an El Nino year more than 3x stronger than the record every year from now until 2028.

    We’ll know immediately if his prediction is incorrect if we fail to get any years close to the required 0.48C increase. Predictions are fun, but we really do have to see the required increases in the year to year data to show that they are occurring. If we do, than Light is a genius and will win the Nobel, but so far we have not.

    Every year that passes without that 0.48C increase reduces his credibility and the credibility of anyone predicting a 6C increase in a decade or two.

  • Yesterday morning before sunup as I was walking my dog, I suddenly experienced what felt like a ground truth: the realization that there are no nouns in the universe, just verbs. In other words the universe is not made of things, but processes; the universe as a many-fold process. Another way to think of it is that the Universe is a Becoming.

    The Becoming is experienced in many ways. It can be objects, which are seen when the Becoming is perceived at any given moment in time; as a coherent Self when you experience your local, internal process at a moment in time; as relationships between objects or states; or as the unfolding dance of relationships between objects, physical states, and mental states.

    The root impulse that underlies the Becoming is the essence of change. Without it, there would be no change, no process, no becoming. In the physical world this essence of change manifests as our old friend the Second Law of Thermodynamics. In the twilight world where spirituality and philosophy intersect, this essence is known as the Tao, and the flow that it enables is wu wei. As far as I can tell, the Second Law and the Tao are the same thing, experienced in different contexts.

    For me, non-dualism is the selfless experience of this unitary flow. Its purpose is whatever we perceive it to be in the moment.

    ****************

    And now, some interesting factoids (and a bit of opinion) about CO₂:

    » For every 16 gigatonnes of CO₂ we emit, the atmospheric concentration goes up by 1 part per million.

    » Humans currently emit about 40 gigatonnes of CO₂ per year, from a combination of fossil fuels, cement manufacturing and land-use changes.

    » As a result, CO₂ concentrations are increasing by about 2.5 ppm every year,

    » The lengthy residence time of CO₂ in the atmosphere means that so long as we emit any CO₂ at all, the atmospheric concentration will keep rising.

    » Every dollar of world GDP produced over the last 15 years has required the emission of 0.6 kg of CO₂ on average – even with the increase in renewable energy production.

    » If we want the atmospheric concentration of CO₂ to stop rising, we need to stop all economic activity.

    » Even if we stopped all CO₂ emissions today by ceasing all economic activity, we would still have a dangerous amount of CO₂ in the air.

    » No one has developed a method to take industrial quantities of CO₂ back out of the air, except (perhaps) for reforesting vast stretches of what is now farmland.

    » The world will not stop its economic activity overnight. We will not even reduce it significantly for the next decade or two, unless a global economic crash happens – in which case we will desperately try to rebuild it.

    » Two decades of economy-driven emissions will push the atmospheric CO₂ over 450 ppm.

    » According to Wasdell et al, the long-term equilibrium temperature rise produced by 450 ppm of CO₂ is about +5 degrees Celsius.

    » We don’t know how long it will take to stabilize at that temperature, but that’s where we will eventually wind up.

    » Such a temperature is not conducive to the survival of many plants and animals, even humans. It is utterly incompatible with our current civilization.

    This is why I believe we are now irreversibly screwed.

  • Awesome post Paul, as you may imagine it is exactly the kind of post I love, although it may have been more difficult without nouns.

    Although not insignificant, climate change is only one of the 6 direct drivers of mass extinction.

    The 6 Direct Drivers of Mass Extinction are:

    … 1) Invasive Species

    … 2) Over-Population

    … 3) Over-Exploitation

    … 4) Habitat Loss

    ….5) Climate Change

    ….6) Pollution

    This is why the tunnel vision laser focus scientists have on data is the same as asking blind men to feel up an elephant. They are too highly trained in scepticism to be good generalists, in other words, they are too afraid of intuition and speculation. It’s like intellectual autism, with apologies for lack of a better phrase.

    Scientists are stuck in their own data silos, which oddly enough can be represented by a test tube. They are like metaphorical test tube babies. They know their test tube like the back of their hand, and what they see scares the shit outta them. Each test tube is their very own crisis.

    But collapse is not the result of one single crisis. We are too resilient for that. Collapse is the confluence of many crises that converge to overwhelm humanity.

    So, while Malcolm Light may be right about his temperature rise, it seems not too likely, but it doesn’t matter in light of the grand scheme of crises convergence.

    Dumb people are fatalistic, smart people aren’t, but smart people are too careful to confide their fears, which oddly enough makes me look smart. Apologies for nakedly fishing for compliments.

    Anyhow Paul, this is a long winded way of me saying that I’m going to steal your work and post it around with your name attached. Good stuff.

  • Paul Chefurka Says: Two decades of economy-driven emissions will push the atmospheric CO₂ over 450 ppm. According to Wasdell et al, the long-term equilibrium temperature rise produced by 450 ppm of CO₂ is about +5 degrees Celsius.

    Sounds reasonable. But to get to 5C in a decade or two requires yearly increases far beyond anything seen so far. Not saying it couldn’t happen that fast, just saying it won’t if we don’t see some phenomenal warming real soon. Until the required yearly temp increases actually occur, we have to conclude that it is just as possible that it could take longer to get to 5C. The rate of increase so far says many decades longer. So at this point do you really want to conclude that the short term prediction is the most likely? Shouldn’t you at least wait for the required faster rate of warming to begin appearing in the data record?

  • @Glaucon X

    We don’t get to +5C in a decade or two. We will set the stage over the next two decades, but the +5 projection is the long-term Earth System equilibrium. It would take the planet decades or even centuries to stabilize at that temperature. The point is that we would already have released enough CO2 for that to happen, even if we stopped all emissions at that point. The background for that projection is here:
    http://www.apollo-gaia.org/CoR%20Keynote.pdf

    @Robert Callaghan

    Thanks – good news deserves to be widely shared! 🙂

  • The Collapse subreddit gets about 60 people viewing.

    The WatchPeopleDie gets about 600 people viewing.

    http://www.reddit.com/r/watchpeopledie/?

  • Guy – We all make mistakes. You have admitted many over the years without giving many details as to their background; I’m spotting a pattern here. The heartfelt apology to your wife a few months back comes to mind. You don’t say why you had to leave your house in this instance? It is your prerogative not to give details of course but I am sure they would help many to empathise with your pain if points of reference are made. Otherwise you may as well just threat NBL as a confessional? Again, it’s your prerogative.

    Another good Mencken quote:
    “Every normal man must be tempted, at times, to spit on his hands, hoist the black flag, and begin slitting throats.”
    ― H.L. Mencken, Prejudices: First Series

    —————————

    Mistakes Were Made (but Not by Me): Why We Justify Foolish Beliefs, Bad Decisions, and Hurtful Acts – Carol Tarvis and Eliot Aronson
    http://www.amazon.com/Mistakes-Were-Made-but-Not/dp/0544574788/
    Brand new edition just out 20th October 2015

    From the blurb:
    “Tavris and Aronson have combined their formidable skills to produce a gleaming model of social insight and scientific engagement. Make no mistake, you need to read this book.” — Robert B. Cialdini, author of Influence: Science and Practice

    Why do people dodge responsibility when things fall apart? Why the parade of public figures unable to own up when they screw up? Why the endless marital quarrels over who is right? Why can we see hypocrisy in others but not in ourselves? Are we all liars? Or do we really believe the stories we tell?

    In this terrifically insightful, engaging new book, renowned social psychologists Carol Tavris and Elliot Aronson take a compelling look into how the brain is wired for self-justification. When we make mistakes, we must calm the cognitive dissonance that jars our feelings of self-worth. And so we create fictions that absolve us of responsibility, restoring our belief that we are smart, moral, and right— a belief that often keeps us on a course that is dumb, immoral, and wrong. Backed by years of research, Mistakes Were Made (But Not by Me) offers a fascinating explanation of self-deception—how it works, the harm it can cause, and how we can overcome it. Turn the page, but be advised: You will never be able to shun blame quite so casually again.

    ————————-
    On culpability:
    “Off With The Goolies”…

    “You can always rely on the Americans to do the right thing – after they have exhausted all other possibilities” – Winston Churchill on the US finally joining the fight against Hitler.

    ————————-

    On the dangers of Nazi stereotypes and stereotyping:

    Like the Daleks, The Vogons and The Borg, I suspect they were all just misunderstood, and deep down, just wanted to be loved?

    ————————-

    “We are the meek and we want it now!” – seen on a ‘T’shirt in very small lettering.

    ————————-

    On gluttons and gluttony – ‘Mr Creosote and The Meaning Of Life’ – and how it will all end – all it will take is one leetle waffer theen mint – and it’s lurking out there somewhere:

    ————————-

    My personal journey from accepting culpability over twenty years ago has progressed something like this:

    Culpability > Introspection > Awakening > Acquiescence > Atonement > Catharsis > Serenity. I fully understand why the Dalai Lama laughs at his neighbour, thank you for that insight.

    ————————-

    On freewill and freedom of thought: So you think you are free to think your own thoughts? OK, try this: think about anything you like for the next ten seconds – except elephants.

    ————————-

    @GlauconX – Malcolm Light does not suggest a linear CO2 increase over the next 13 years. Any increase will be logarithmic/exponential.

    ————————-

    Only Love Remains – and a whole lotta bitchin’

  • “We don’t get to +5C in a decade or two.”? Near future is already written in stone because of inertia. Arctic summer ice is certainly gone by 2020, says Wadhams. That means we have all year ice-free Arctic by 2030. Arctic seafloor and surface methane will skyrocket when ice is lost. Then we could have +5 by 2035.

  • Paul Chefurka Says: We don’t get to +5C in a decade or two.

    Light, Beckwith, and Guy McPherson say that we do.

  • Mark Austin Says:
    October 26th, 2015 at 3:39 pm
    ….
    DREDD – thank you for the extinction of Manzanillo link.
    ===================================
    You are quite welcome Mark.

  • Thousands of innocent Iraqi civilians with or w/o spirituality are “BECOMING” infected with deadly cholera (as in the 2nd law of Thermo, you might say) from sewage contaminated water supplies.

    The homicidal Merican military colossus, following Israel’s Oded Yinon Plan, efficiently destroyed most all Iraqi infrastructure, including water & sewage treatment plants.

    Thousands of little Iraqi children have already “become” dead – others are about to “become” dead soon.

    Israelis are ecstatic that Iraqis are drinking cholera infected water.

    Iraq could never pose any opposition to Israel’s Zionist land grabbing Oded Yinon plan designed to control the entire Middle East.

    Israel is the epitome of a religious & spiritual country.

    Israel is in the process of “becoming” greater Israel from the Nile to the Euphrates by stealing more Palestinian land & establishing illegal settlements for Jewish only settlers.

    Israelis are obsessed with their special Jewish fundamentalist spirituality – the most special in all theology, you might say.

    Everybody is becoming something (as in the 2nd law?), but some becomings are surely much more agonizing & deadly than other becomings.

    Agonizing & feverish death from cholera is just another “becoming.”

    … or even a different “discourse?”

    Cholera epidemic in devastated Iraq.

    http://www.bbc.com/news/world-middle-east-34635633

  • Paul C.

    Bucky Fuller book from the mid-to-late-60’s: “I Seem To Be a Verb”.

    Also from Bucky (from memory, from Synergetics probably): There are no things, only angular and frequency variations.

    First becoming song that comes to mind:

  • Zarquon said “On freewill and freedom of thought: So you think you are free to think your own thoughts? OK, try this: think about anything you like for the next ten seconds – except elephants.”

    @Zarquon,

    That isn’t really how I personally perceive “free will”.

    Yes, we as individuals are subject to the thoughts and ideas of others, just as we are subject to the environment, but we as individuals have the ability, the free will, to ultimately choose how to act (or not) regarding those things.

    Additionally your “thought-experiment” is a bit paradoxical. You say not to think about elephants but after reading the sentence one will obviously think about elephants. You tell us to do one thing, we do another, almost like free will in and of itself.

  • My one friend told me this morning, “What you find funny, most people don’t find funny.”
    Said I, “Go figure.”

  • .
    @Zarquon … I had some thoughts regarding your post a few days ago about violence, in particular about your scenario with the gluttonous village boy.

    I think your violent ‘final solution’ of killing the boy would just be perpetrating the same mistake that’s always being made in our world; the mistake of violently exterminating an effects rather than attempting to seek out a root cause and correcting it. The problem with your hypothetical scenarios is that they all assume that an aberration just pops up randomly out of nowhere. That’s not actually how things work though; psychological dysfunction rarely arises spontaneously out of a total vacuum. That make’s your scenario’s faulty and too unrealistic for me to really even consider seriously.

    So, what was the root cause behind the village boys ‘lack’ mentality? Did you even care to know or find out?

    If it was his mother starving him in-uterus because she didn’t want to be pregnant with him, then you have even deeper problems in your village, and it’s not the utopia you think it to be. Maybe it’s time to go talk to the men who are impregnating their wives against their wishes, or maybe you need to address a village culture that didn’t offer the women an alternative to being impregnated with unwanted children, which they then might try to starve themselves into aborting.

    What if it was a case of the village boy numbing himself by overeating because he was being bullied by an unseen group of nasty village boys that you weren’t aware of, and what if he took too much because he was terrified of running out and having his feelings surface out of the numbness with no one there to help him deal with this? Shouldn’t you then find the bullying village boys and kill them too? And even after that, why were these boys being bullies in the first place? What started that?

    You have to trace it all back to the root cause and not just kill all the effects, or you’ll just be killing off a lot of people perpetually and forever.

    The same analysis could be made for all of your scenarios. That’s the problem when people presume to know everything at a glance and just look at the surface of a problem without any real insight into what might really be going on in a given situation. If you violently kill the effect and leave yourself blinded as to what caused the dysfunction in the first place, then you won’t be solving anything; you’ll just be mollifying your own discomfort about something you saw and judged, something that you may have even failed to perceive properly in the first place.

    The compassionate person, while not condoning the effect, will seek to understand why a person behaves in a dysfunctional way and then maybe try to intervene in a positive way. A person who hates just despises the person along with the behavior and can’t separate the two, and usually just thinks of violence. I prefer the non violent approach in the long run. The violent approach has already been implemented for eons and it never has solved anything. Mistakes will be made, but you can’t just go around shooting everyone, or you’d even have to shoot yourself eventually too.

    Food for thought.

  • TIME IS SHORTER:

    THIS IS THE VIDEO I POSTED ON MY BEST FRIEND’S TRIBUTE SITE ON 7-11-2013, the day of his death. I’m not waiting.

    This tribute is for:

    GUY
    PAULINE
    CAROLYN
    OLDGROWTHFOREST
    SATISH
    INFANTTYRONE
    MARK
    MO
    LITTLE WHITE ASS
    CAROLINE
    WESTER

    “PIPERS TO THE END”

  • From the previously-linked article:

    ‘Previous estimates of when the average atmospheric global temperature anomaly increase would reach 6°C was 2034.7, by which time massive global extinction would be proceeding. The new corrected time for this event is 2034.7 – 6 = 2028.7 which is 13 years in the future. During the major Permian Extinction event, which was caused by a massive methane build-up in the atmosphere, the mean surface atmospheric temperature increased by 5°C over 13 years. As the present mean global surface atmospheric temperature is already greater than 1°C hotter than the mean, we will be looking at at least a 6°C temperature increase by 2028 with its associated global extinction event. This is a frightening correlation between the new predicted 6°C average global surface atmospheric temperature rise and what is known to have occurred during the major Permian extinction event, both of which were caused by a massive buildup of methane in the atmosphere. We are clearly in for a very rough-hot ride in the next decade as the terminal global extinction event approaches.

    Malcolm P.R. Light (Dr)
    Earth Scientist’

    This does not imply that 13 years from now temperatures across the globe will be 5oC higher than now.

    The Arctic is heating at a very much faster rate than the rest of the world, and it could well be that the Arctic region becomes 10oC warmer, whilst tropical regions reach ‘just’ 1.5oC warmer than current (ignoring the anticipated lack of Global Dimming, which accompanies the expected rapid decline in industrial activity, aspect).

    Such warming would, of course, be catastrophic, but would not necessarily lead to extinction of humans and most vertebrate species in the 2030s.

    The key to making even half-accurate predictions is the effect of atmospheric methane, and in particular the instantaneous or short-term warming factor compared to carbon dioxide. No one seems to know the multiplier or even be working on determining it. Light has suggested a figure as high as 1000 x CO2 instantaneous; Beckwith 250 x CO2; UNIPCC 86 x CO2 for 20 years; Guy plays safe by saying more than 100 x CO2 for time frames that matter. An extraordinarily wide range of carbon dioxide equivalent figures therefore exists. Ignoring other greenhouse gasses we can have:

    400ppm actual CO2 plus 2 x 86 = 572ppm CO2e

    or

    400ppm actual CO2 plus 2 x 1000 = 2400ppm CO2e

    What is more, if atmospheric methane increases to 3ppm we can have

    400 + 258 = 658ppm CO2e

    or

    400 + 3000 = 3400ppm CO2e

    Also, of very high significance is the atmospheric hydroxyl aspect: massive eruptions of methane are likely to deplete atmospheric hydroxyl and result in extended residence time for methane.

    Anticipation of linear temperature rise cannot be inappropriate. But how steep the slope may become is anyone’s guess.

    Since the threat of methane became recognised around 15 years ago) there has only been one sane agenda: to decouple from the use of fossil fuels in order to prevent the triggering of massive methane releases. We all know the attractiveness of that agenda to TPTB.

    One thing is abundantly clear. Current political-economic arrangements will not last another 5 years. Indeed, it is difficult to envision how they can persist beyond 2016.

    WTI $43.22 (down 0.74)

    Brent $46.84 (down 0.71)

    For most of the past century the financial system has been supported by profits obtained by extracting (often looting) oil.

    http://robinwestenra.blogspot.co.nz/2015/10/oil-company-profits-plummeting.html

  • this place is significantly better since I stopped posting! bravo!

  • “Living in two worlds is great in theory. But having to choose one world over the other is very, very difficult, especially when the choice runs counter to the status quo.”

    I have a question for you and your other readers. I am actively working with people to elect Bernie Sanders President.

    Bernie Sanders is a genuinely wonderful candidate and I am working with wonderful people.But, in the back of my mind it seems useless because I have read volumes of information on catastrophic climate change (Guy Mcpherson is my favorite) and am witnessing it first hand in the dying forests of Northern California.

    ANY talk about near term extinction with anyone gets the “crazy” stare so I don’t bother any more. Just wondering about others experience with this.

    Thanks,
    Heidi

  • Bernie Sanders wants a tax-and-dividend where the government gets two-fifths of the money. This was supported by Bill McKibben and Naomi Klein and diametrically opposed to James Hansen’s idea that only private citizens should get that money and governments who will just give it away to General Electric and their like.

    The only thing stupider than that is the fact that a second Doctors Without Borders hospital was bombed yesterday by the U.S. backed coalition in Yemen.

    Another Doctors Without Borders Hospital Bombed By U.S. Backed Coalition in Yemen from collapse

  • Mistakes Happen

    I meant to say “and NOT governments”

    My previous link was removed.

    Another Doctors Without Borders Hospital Bombed By U.S. Backed Coalition In Yemen.

    http://www.truthdig.com/report/item/msf_hospital_in_yemen_bombed_by_us-backed_coalition_20151027

  • All the best Heidi Strand. It looks like a left swing is beginning to dawn around the world. But I believe elections are being rigged. I live in New Zealand.Inc run by a total muppet we on the left call FJK Fuck John Key. An amazing book called Dirty Politics by Nicky Hager was put out before our last election and we still ended up with this dirt bag narcissistic prick. If you can get this book I recommend it as this deceptive underhanded politics is poisoning everything. http://Www.dirtypoliticsnz.com also Russell Brands book Revolution is great. Fingers crossed the public change the system and remove the heads (literally would be good) of this rotten regime world wide.
    I Love this site full of insight you are all great.*

  • Robert Callaghan, your skill at communicating with the written word has improved immensely over the few years I have been reading your thoughts/ravings. Happy fishing friend.

  • kevin moore Says: Anticipation of linear temperature rise cannot be inappropriate. But how steep the slope may become is anyone’s guess.

    Not a guess at all. The +5C that Guy and the others predict will occur within a decade or two would produce a slope that is screamingly steep and linear. I’m surprisingly disappointed that people on what is supposed to be a science blog find this so hard to figure out. Here’s a visual aid, extend the line on this graph to 5C for the year 2025 or 2035 and see what you get:

    http://climate.nasa.gov/vital-signs/global-temperature/

  • @Tim

    In the spirit of reactive politics countering the various radiations popping up all over the place, one must lock’n load every weapon in the arsenal, including tumor suppressing genes.

    These genes are activated by selenium, particularly organic selenium like, for instance, selenomethionine.

    Selenium is also found in the head and tail of every sperm cell. Considering the few hundred million sperm cells in every release, well, it may not be addicting, but it’s close.

    Geneticist, Dr. Olree, is on youtube with more about minerals for the genetic code.

  • Gloucon X

    ‘Not a guess at all. The +5C that Guy and the others predict will occur within a decade or two would produce a slope that is screamingly steep and linear’

    That is just plain silly.

    No one knows how many trees will dies or how much forest will burn.

    No one knows when the hydroxyl oxidation system will be overwhelmed or even if it will be overwhelmed.

    No one knows anything for certain when we dealing with a gigantic complex system that has dozens of inter-reacting feedbacks, some positive and some negative.

    And whatever happens, the temperature curve won’t be linear. Almost nothing in nature is linear.

  • What’s really, genuinely scary about climate change and it genuinely really does scare me is that it’s exponential not linear. Meaning in a short time we’ll have our asses handed to us in a basket. This really gets me even though I’m, nearing 70. BC glaciers are rapidly and increasingly melting back. Christ! this upsets me, it won’t be end of century more like they’re all gone by 2050 at the latest! I really find this a cause for grief 🙁 http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/british-columbia/unprecedented-b-c-glacier-melt-seeps-into-u-s-climate-change-concerns-1.2646742

  • It is an excellent phrase Guy and one I was not familiar with until you used it here.
    It is a useful antidote to the arrogance that many of us are prone to, myself especially, and I thank you for the reminder.
    Mistakes can be hugely helpful and beneficial of course, and I have no explanation for the endless series of mistakes and poor decisions that find me in this beautiful and benign place.
    I’m sure you are all familiar with the “that’s bad…no that’s good… ” line/story/fable where bad events lead to good things and vise versa.
    My life has been a perfect illustration of that principal.
    Born a bastard child in northern England in July 1950 by October of that year I was living by Wainui beach in North Island NZ.
    God knows what my life would have been had I had a “normal” life in Wigan England.
    Today I finished the most daunting task of the year, the shearing of my flock of sheep. It gives me great satisfaction to look out at animals in a fit state to face what El Nino may throw at us.
    I fear it will be more “tough” going.

  • We’re still collecting data on the Collapse Personality Profile Survey.  I put up some of the early Demographic results.

    As expected, the vast majority of people haunting collapse blogs are White Males from North America. The percentage of female respondents though is higher than expected. Education level is generally high, Baccalaureate or above.  The Age Demographic was a surprise, with more respondents below age 50 than above.

    The Personality and IQ data show clear trends, but I have not published them yet.  I have plugged this survey on numerous websites, so the Sample is not strictly Diners, quite a few from r/collapse on Reddit and Gail’s Our Finite World also.

    I will not publish the complete data set until next Tuesday, so still plenty of time for you to participate in the survey.

    RE

  • Heidi Strand: I know what you mean about Bernie Sanders, and I think it speaks to our predicament in general: what the hell do we do with our lives when it all seems relatively pointless compared to the impending catastrophe? I think it’s important to remember that there are short-term benefits to giving a shit though, even if the end game is the same. For instance, if Donald Trump became president (never thought those words would be typed in any serious context) there would be many things that would happen that would be very, very bad for most people. Can you imagine what the Trump judicial appointees would look like, for instance? Not to mention what his policies would be. And since I have health insurance through the ACA, I’m somewhat invested in keeping that piece of legislation. If we end up with a republican legislative majority (gerrymandered or not) AND a republican president, we’re in for some serious bullshit, on top of all the climate mayhem. On the other hand, it would also suck if the shit hit the fan while Bernie was president and he got blamed for it. Anyway, I say keep up the good fight and keep feelin’ the Bern!!

    Dr. Epiphany: Spring wedding in the islands sounds fabulous. I’ll be there (with or without my “fiance” hahaha)!!!

  • Three articles of possible interest:

    http://www.scientificamerican.com/article/global-warming-may-mean-stifling-heat-for-middle-east/
    Global Warming May Mean Stifling Heat for Middle East
    More intense heat waves could strike the desert region…

    ———————————-
    http://www.odditycentral.com/news/vivos-the-ultimate-doomsday-community-bunkers-for-the-rich-and-paranoid.html
    Vivos – The Ultimate Doomsday Community Bunkers for the Rich and Paranoid
    The most luxurious coffins money can buy…
    ———————————
    https://www.independent.co.uk/life-style/gadgets-and-tech/news/self-driving-cars-will-need-to-be-programmed-to-kill-their-owners-academics-warn-and-people-will-a6710956.html
    Self-driving cars will need to be programmed to kill their owners, academics warn, and people will have to choose who will die

    So even cars will now have to face the dilemma of who to kill and who to spare. What could possibly go wrong?…
    ———————————

    LWA wrote – “The problem with your hypothetical scenarios is that they all assume that an aberration just pops up randomly out of nowhere. That’s not actually how things work though…”

    I beg to differ. Presuming you are familiar with Darwin’s Theory of Evolution, might I suggest you take quick refresher on the meaning of the terms ‘Ramdon Mutation’, ‘Emergent Properties’ and ‘Natural Selection’. Yes, many aberrant dysfunctions are caused and/or cured by ‘nurture’. I am referring in particular to aberrant dysfunctions that express exclusively through the genome eg ‘nature’ – ask any animal breeder for proof of this. These expressions can not be removed by social engineering and can only be removed by excising them from the gene pool. This is known as ‘artificial selection’. If, on the other hand, you prefer to believe that other forces such as Demonic Possession are responsible, then I apologise for wasting your time.

    See also:
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/John_B._Calhoun
    http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC1644264/pdf/procrsmed00338-0007.pdf
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Emergence

  • I do not endorse the coercive violonce of the state against non-violent noncompliants, and therefore cannot lend my sanction by voting. However I think the election of Trump to the presidency will trump a lot of mischief prevalent abroad in this country.

  • Heidi, Your question: “ANY talk about near term extinction with anyone gets the “crazy” stare so I don’t bother any more. Just wondering about others experience with this.” made my day — actually night since this is still nighttime for me.

    As an occasional golfer, and retired, I have brought up the global- warming/climate-change topic now and then with unsuspecting golfers. The reaction I got, in general, ranged from stupefaction to utter stupefaction. Might as well have talked to the trees in the forests, which I do when I am there, as I feel I get more interest in regurgitating the words climate-change, from the trees than from Homo Sapiens. I can’t imagine bringing up the subject of Near-Term-Human-Extinction as that would place me on an endangered list of banned golfers to this club.

    On another note however, I often think of the wasted fuel I use to go golfing in an automobile, all the while encouraging the golfing facility to waste water, employee travel and other stuff and wonder if I’ve lost all senses of right-from-wrong. I’m the guy writing some thoughts on global warming and the need to stop using CO2, and yet I drive 20 miles to go and hit a little white ball from hole to hole and think that’s ok? It isn’t, and how can I blame anyone who I have asked about global warming to take me seriously, especially if I expected them to give my question any serious thought whatsoever.

    Talking about global warming with strangers, from my experiences in doing so, is like talking about the moon, and the moon, on a scale of interest, wins out. Talking about NTHE must get you close to the looney category …… but then being looney is not all that strange, all you have to do is talk with most people.

  • Here is a world shaking fact, & it appears to be true.

    Daily carbon emissions from deforestation forest fires & peat burning in Indonesia EXCEED all emissions from the U.S. industrial economy.

    They CANNOT PUT THESE FIRES OUT!

    Make sure that you view several vids of the smoke & pollution.

    Scribbler has great piece posted now.

    It is being called the greatest ongoing public health crisis in the world.

    http://www.motherjones.com/environment/2015/10/indonesia-climate-change-fires-palm-oil-el-nino

  • Kate, so many sharp Kiwis on Guy’s blog filling our brains with great info.

    The Wiki entry on Nicky Hager’s “DIRTY POLITICS” was both thorough & thoroughly bumming.

    Scumbag Lawyerfish Judith Collins cheerfully joins in the standard yuppie lawyerly shit slinging with her sister lawyerfishes – Hilarious, Tzipi Livni, Samantha Power, Victoria Nuland …

    Truly independent journo Jonathan Cook’s recent piece on Israeli Hasbara writers is an eye opener about the ubiquitous lawyerfish attack game.

    The massively funded Israeli Hasbara hacks on the net now number more than 100,000.

    Have I learned about those twisted Zionist dirty tricksters whenever I even mention Israeli murdering gangsters masquerading as kindly humanists.

    07 July, 2015
    Countercurrents.org

    Nazareth: The Israeli government believes it is locked in an epic struggle to save Israel from the growing movement calling for an international boycott. Prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu warns that Israel must quickly “rebrand” itself to avoid pariah status.

    Ordinary Israelis are therefore being conscripted into an army of spin-doctors in a campaign termed “hasbara” – Hebrew for “public diplomacy”, or more literally “propaganda”.

    In the latest offensive, the education ministry has launched a compulsory hasbara course for Israeli students travelling abroad. All youth delegations are now required to learn how to justify to outsiders Israel’s policies in the occupied territories. According to officials, the students must challenge those who “seek to delegitimize Israel”.

    It is yet more evidence that hasbara has become a national obsession in Israel – and that the line between support for one’s country and support for the subjugation of another people has been erased. Some 85 per cent of Israelis tell pollsters they are keen to become hasbara ambassadors for the Netanyahu government.

    http://www.countercurrents.org/cook070715.htm

    Are you the infamous Kiwi muckracker, Cactus Kate, whom I just read about?

  • Guy, I am finding much satisfaction & some peace as I approach the valley of death because I have always tried to learn from my stumblings & errors, as scientific inquiry teaches us.

    What else was the committed intellectual & scientific life supposed to teach us?

    E.T. Jaynes was a wonderful man & a hard nosed scientist.
    His insightful work is mandatory for understanding the probabilities of scientific logic applied to near term extinction.

    There is a massive amount of cumulative empirical & observational evidence indicating the increasing probability of an abrupt methane release from arctic stores leading to near term extinction.

    Guy McPherson’s running concise summary is prologue.

    A tight piece of scientific wisdom from Jaynes would serve scientific observers full well at this perilous time;

    “It is not the absolute status of an hypothesis embedded in the universe of all conceivable theories (it was here that Karl Popper committed his fatal error), but the plausibility of an hypothesis relative to a definite set of specified alternatives, that Bayesian inference determines.”

    “The functional use of induction in science is not to tell us what predictions must be true, but rather what predictions are most strongly indicated by our present hypotheses & OUR PRESENT INFORMATION.”

    “As Harold Jefferys explained long ago, induction is most valuable to a scientist just when it turns out to be wrong; only then do we get new fundamental knowledge.”

    Mistakes were made; HALLELUJAH, we learned something.

    Asking difficult questions & being fully prepared to stumble is the heart of scientific inquiry.

    from PROBABILITY THEORY, The Logic of Science, Edwin T. Jaynes, 2003, Cambridge Univ. Press pp 310-311

  • @Zarquon

    Social Darwinism …

    Now largely discredited, social Darwinism was advocated by Herbert Spencer and others in the late 19th and early 20th centuries and was used to justify political conservatism, imperialism, and racism and to discourage intervention and reform.

    Sorry, but Darwin never promoted any such a theory … his theory addressed physical adaptations, not psychological ones. Social Darwinism was a fantasy created by a bunch of eugenics fucks who wanted to judge and kill people who they didn’t like in order to promote their own personal predilections and megalomaniac points of views, which satisfied their own self importance and also their perverse desire to be little sky daddies (particularly, little white sky daddies of Christian European descent.)

    Please do not attribute such trash thinking to a great man like Darwin! Your vet needs to get a clue.

    🙂

  • jay Says:
    October 27th, 2015 at 10:57 pm

    BC glaciers are rapidly and increasingly melting back.

    ====================================================
    So are the Glacier Bay area glaciers.

    Alaska folk are generally unaware that this is what is causing their sea level fall.

    How about the Canadians?

    The Evolution and Migration of Sea Level Hinge Points

  • LWA wrote – “Sorry, but Darwin never promoted any such a theory … his theory addressed physical adaptations, not psychological ones.” blah blah blah…

    Wrong again – Social Darwinism is an outdated construct but nonetheless had merit; it was right, sometimes for the wrong reasons. I think you may need to rethink and retract your unattributed assertion in view of current research?

    Furthermore: Darwin strongly suspected that evolution by natural selection did indeed have an effect on the heritability of personality traits and said as much in his private letters.

    MAJOR PERSONALITY STUDY FINDS THAT TRAITS ARE MOSTLY INHERITED
    http://www.nytimes.com/1986/12/02/science/major-personality-study-finds-that-traits-are-mostly-inherited.html?pagewanted=all

    It’s nature, not nurture: personality lies in genes, twins study shows
    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/science/science-news/9267147/Its-nature-not-nurture-personality-lies-in-genes-twins-study-shows.html

    Psychopathic personality traits: heritability and genetic overlap with internalizing and externalizing psychopathology
    http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2242349/
    Results: Twin analyses revealed significant genetic influence on distinct psychopathic traits (Fearless Dominance and Impulsive Antisociality). Moreover, Fearless Dominance was associated with reduced genetic risk for internalizing psychopathology, and Impulsive Antisociality was associated with increased genetic risk for externalizing psychopathology.
    Conclusions: These results indicate that different psychopathic traits as measured by the MPQ show distinct genetically based relations with broad dimensions of DSM psychopathology.

    Do Genes Influence Personality?
    A summary of recent advances in the nature vs. nurture debate.
    http://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/under-the-influence/201307/do-genes-influence-personality

    Twins Separated at Birth Reveal Staggering Influence of Genetics
    http://www.livescience.com/47288-twin-study-importance-of-genetics.html

    Twin Study Finds Heavy Hand of Genetics in Personality Disorders
    http://psychcentral.com/news/2012/09/25/twin-study-finds-heavy-hand-of-genetics-in-personality-disorders/45085.html

    Genes don’t just influence your IQ—they determine how well you do in school
    http://news.sciencemag.org/biology/2014/10/genes-dont-just-influence-your-iq-they-determine-how-well-you-do-school

    Personality and Psychopathology: Genetic Perspectives (pdf 1096kb)
    http://psych.colorado.edu/~carey/pdfFiles/Personality_Carey01.pdf

    You can’t teach a pig to sing. It wastes your time and irritates the pig.

  • @Zarquon

    Wrong again…

    Funny, I don’t recall being wrong a first time.

    You can’t teach a pig to sing. It wastes your time and irritates the pig.

    Did you just call me a pig?

    I don’t think it’s your (lack of) intelligence that annoys people. I think it’s your liberal use of holier than thou insults that are doing you this service.

    I won’t be conversing with you anymore here. Go talk to Gerald, he’s a Hitler worshiper too. I think you two may find you have a great deal in common.

    Enjoy your delusions!

  • @Jean “Wonder if I’ve lost all senses of right-from-wrong.”

    You’re going to have issues as long as you continue to believe in artificial constructs. Ask yourself who created the moral duality of right/wrong, and to what benefit? Is it not just another false narrative, along with religion, institutions, etc designed to strengthen a power paradigm?

    To understand our situation, and perhaps finally come to peace with the truth, we must start with basic principles. First & foremost, we’re just a collection of atoms that happened to form cohesive cells. Some of these cells react to chemical & electrical stimuli to generate a perception of life. This self-aware concept of life motivates the demand for energy in the form of resource consumption.

    Since demand always outstrips supply, competition over scarce resources leads to many different competitive strategies. Some of the most obvious are size, strength, armor, etc, but others that leverage intelligence & psychological aspects are also highly effective.

    For evidence of the successful deployment of these tools, we can see winners all around us. And what is their common characteristic? Do they “follow the rules”, do they feel bad about “right & wrong”?

    On the other hand, what is the common characteristic of losers? Aren’t they the ones always complaining? Aren’t they the ones who decided not to have children. Aren’t these characteristics in fact evidence of mal-adaptation, purposely cultivated by selective breeding over millenia to create serfs, slaves & servants who turn to religion or other false constructs to provide succor?

    Discussing NTE doesn’t have to involve the sentiments commonly expressed here. The reason these discussions seem to focus on that particular angle is simply a function of who is doing the talking. Since the winners are busy winning, and are in fact active right now game playing the end, they never have much time for contemplation. We leave that to those who inherited their personality legacies from some chumps 5-10,000 years ago.

  • ‘Mistakes’ are still being made as the system progresses (or is being pushed) towards collapse:

    Central bank interest rates:

    Australia 2.00%
    Canada 0.50%
    UK 0.50%
    US 0 to 0.50%
    Japan 0 to 0.10%
    Eurozone deposit -0.20%
    Sweden -0.35%
    Switz. -1.25 to -0.25%
    Denmark -0.75%

    http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2015-10-28/death-monetary-policy-1-dismal-chart

    Meanwhile, in Hobbitland:

    ‘RBNZ holds OCR at 2.75%; says “further reduction seems likely”; warns may need even lower rates if NZ$ rebounds further

    Posted in News October 29, 2015 – 09:04am, Bernard Hickey

    The Reserve Bank has held its Official Cash Rate at 2.75% as widely expected, pausing its sequence of three rate cuts in quick succession to “watch and wait.”

    Unprecedented in the history of banking must mean something.

  • B9K9, I can’t tell if you’re just playing Ayn Rand, doing research on dumbing-down, or having some intellectual fun & games with the loser underlings.

    I’ll bite just a slight bit.

    If there is NO right or wrong; how can it be RIGHT to be a WINNER & WRONG to be what you label a loser or non winner?

    I have met some yuppies, especially Merican yuppie lawyerfish, who advocate & PRACTICE your brand of unbridled narcissism.

  • well, which are you B9K9? a thoughtful loser or a game playing winner? …you sound a little like the game playing variety.

  • ‘It’s a world that’s adding more than 50 billion tons of carbon dioxide equivalent gasses to the atmosphere every single year. It’s a year where, according to Ralph Keeling, we are likely to never see atmospheric CO2 levels in the 300-399 parts per million range ever again in our lifetimes. And it’s a time when global temperatures are at their hottest ever recorded by human instruments — likely to hit a very dangerous range between 1 and 1.2 C hotter than 1880s averages during 2015 and 2016.

    ……Over the 2000s and early 2010s, despite a swing in atmospheric natural variability back toward ‘cool,’ negative PDO, conditions, global temperatures continued to climb. Greenhouse gasses were building up in the atmosphere at record rates. Rates about 6 times faster than during the Permian hothouse extinction event that wiped out 75 percent of life on land and more than 90 percent of life in the oceans.’

    https://robertscribbler.com/2015/10/28/a-world-where-heat-haunts-us-2015-may-see-worst-el-nino-ever-as-global-temperatures-rocket-past-1-c-mark/

  • People are about to learn what the term ‘non-linear’ means in relation to climate change. Mistakes have been made… writ large.

    Only death remains.

  • “Not only is the universe stranger than we imagine, it is stranger than we can imagine” – attributed to Eddington and to Haldane.

    Single nucleotide polymorphisms can and do affect structure and function, including cognitive, intellectual and emotional function and personality. But no gene is an island, and gene expression from the subcellular to the societal level and beyond operates in a stew. Success from a gene’s point of view is leaving behind more copies like itself, derived either from its current vehicle (individual organism) or related vehicles.

    The viral gene for the proteins syncyhin that cause the viral membranes to fuse with the cell membranes was incorporated with an ancient retrovirus into the germ line of placental mammals (Eutheria), and now still makes the syncytin protein that forms the outermost layer of fused cells, the syncitiotrophoblast in the mammalian placenta. That gene is successful, although the rest of that fossil virus has been degraded through random mutations: a functional gene is conserved because random mutations may destroy its function and remove the vehicles carrying it from the gene pool.

    At another level, memes derived from societal narratives and mythology have their own successes and failures, even when carried by vehicles with genetic diversity.

  • kevin moore. The “weighting” via time of methane has quite diverse numbers. For “us here”, well looking at a 30 or 50 year rate seems moot. I like 86 times also. Thanks also for bringing up the hydroxyl depletion, which with copious methane would deplete hydroxyl levels to miniscule amounts at certain altitudes. My hunch is the hydroxyl depletion is where some of the researchers assign a higher magnification of effect or multiplication. But, 86 gives numbers that appear to drive the nails into all of our coffins – or fuel to fire our cremation.

    Looking at the shuttering of instrumentation for beta radiation levels in the usOFa, the marine and marine food testing shutdown of Pacific ocean levels, and the sharp drop in basic research in methane plumes after SWERUS’ results started coming in – well, we could have had some much better modeling of how and how much the methane would impact us. But “they” don’t want it. They didn’t listen to Alice and Rosalie about radiation in the 1960’s and they have no intention to on the matters now also at hand.

    Just taking the bus to work and working with vulnerable people. Nihil illegitimati corborundum as Sam Day used to say.

  • (1) My friend in Boston theorized last night that climate holocaust is a form of genocide perdectly preferable to WASPy North Americans and Europeans who will be far, far down on the list of those affected by the fallout. Meaning I guess that the boys in NY, Washington and London took a look at the data, did the calculations and determined that since it wasn’t going to be their hide that was skinned, that it would be just fine to keep flying, keep driving, keep the AC on, keep animals in slavery, keep everything as is, keep the current system going as long as it remains comfortable to do so…cuz gosh darn if it just doesn’t affect me or mine, and whon’t any time soon, and everybody else can just go to hell.

    Maybe he’s right, maybe he’s not. But that would be par for the course from practically every WASPy Euro I ever knew or loved.

    (2) I may be utterly completely deluded, but it seems to me that quantum physics puts all notions of “no free will” to the flames. If you are still stuck in “common sense” [sic] Newtonian Neo-Calvinism, you ought to get deeper into the quantum. As deep as possible please. And i am not talking about another flip of the wrist dismissal. If Pauly sent you back to Zwingli and Luther please explicate in detail as I am more than interested.

    (3) How can we, women, who have been taught to be afraid of every little noise in the night, dare to imagine that we might destroy the world that men defend with their armies and their lives? How can we, women, who have no vivid memory of ourselves as heroes, imagine that we might succeed in building a revolutionary community? Where can we find the revolutionary courage to overcome our slave fear?

    Sadly, we are as invisible to ourselves as we are to men. We learn to see with their eyes—and they are near blind. Our first task, as feminists, is to learn to see with our own eyes.

    If we could see with our own eyes, I believe that we would see that we already have, in embryonic form, the qualities required to overturn the male supremacist system which oppresses us and which threatens to destroy all life on this planet.

    – Andrea Dworkin, The Sexual Politics of Fear and Courage

    (4) I want to thank again Dr. McPherson for assisting greatly in reawakening me after I was put down hard by the hard core right wing ascendency in 2000.
    I was just coasting along when my friend in Louisville sent me the Bluegrass Bioneers presentation. A wake up call like nothing else. Shortly after I witnessed my students being brutalized in their school and, knowing what I grokked from McPerson, I understood what had to be done. I tried to stop systematic brutality coming down on my students. Alone. Completely alone. Not a single adult stood with me. It was as if I was plunging headlong into the raging fire, sword in hand, without a holy hope in hell of making it out alive.

    Well, i made it out. I was forced out. Booted out on trumped up charges and sent packing – with malice. Nobody of any race, nationality or income group went to bat with me. None. Zero.

    Not the administration. Not the cops. Not the mayor. Not a single news organization. Not a single parent. Not a single colleague. Total no show. Thrown to the lions and nearly devoured. But the kids remember and remember to this day. That’s all that matters.

    Thanks again.

  • For your further rumination…

    Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy: Eugenics
    http://plato.stanford.edu/entries/eugenics/
    A comprehensive scholarly article highlighting the differentiation between ‘liberal’ eugenics (ethical) and ‘authoritarian’ eugenics (unethical).

    So, my first question: Can ‘liberal’ eugenics be used to remove psychopathy from the gene pool? By in-vitro testing and selective abortion for example? I would suggest by using probabilistic algorithms rather than waiting to define absolutes. The process could be overseen by a heavily mediated ethics committee with representatives having no religious, racial or sexual prejudices.

    Robin Datta wrote – “At another level, memes derived from societal narratives and mythology have their own successes and failures, even when carried by vehicles with genetic diversity.” Yes, Robin, absolutely! But perhaps vice versa also?; A synergistic dance macabre? How can we break that cycle if so?

    So, my second question: Could culturally driven (socially engineered) memes affect genes via epigenetics? And, how might that be expressed?

    My third question: What might be the environmental, psychological and social triggers for psychopathy to express in the phenotype?

    Forth question: Isn’t it easier just to kill the bastards and have done with it?

    THE GHOST IN OUR GENES: LEGAL AND ETHICAL IMPLICATIONS OF EPIGENETICS
    http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3034450/

    The Ghost In Your Genes – BBC Horizon documentary
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fMxgkSgZoJs

  • Wester,

    You area rare man. Take good care of yourself and everything you love for as long as you can.

    Yes, the people your friend in Boston mentions actually believe (are absolutely sure) that they and their privileged offspring can survive and THRIVE in the world they made are making to measure for themselves.
    For me, there’s no theorizing necessary. The evidence speaks for itself.

    And thanks for quoting Andrea Dworkin.
    The young new “feminists” I come across here, have either never heard of her or think that she’s totally irrelevant. Poor little sheep. The backlash has worked a treat. Now it’s all about “equality”, childcare, freezing your eggs until they decide to have a “family”, having more female CEOs and high-ranking officers etc. etc. All stuff that can be “accommodated”, ha, ha, by our “progressive” Western patriarchy” because that must not change, EVER. Young Western women have missed the plot entirely.

  • Maybe this will help…a few more mouths to feed is all!…put a fork in us, were done.

    http://www.cbc.ca/news/world/china-one-child-policy-abolishes-1.3293742

  • kevin moore Says:
    October 28th, 2015 at 3:23 pm

    thanks for the link to Scribbler.

    He did a great post which heralds upcoming SLC surprises.

    (Calling All Cars: The Case of the “Missing Six” – 3)

  • Volkswagen’s highest management, especially engineering, “made” a deliberate, conscious, & carefully crafted “DECEPTION.”

    The design & implementation of the “emissions defeat device” was completely successful, at least temporarily.

    Only after it was discovered did the “illegal device” become a “MISTAKE.”

    from Wiki;
    Turbocharged direct injection or TDI[1] is a design of turbodiesel engines featuring turbocharging and cylinder-direct fuel injection[1] that was developed and produced by the Volkswagen Group (VW AG).

    Some TDI engines installed in 2009 to 2015 model year Volkswagen Group cars sold through 18 September 2015 had an emissions defeat device,[8][9] which activated emissions controls only during emissions testing. The emissions controls were suppressed otherwise, allowing the TDI engines to exceed legal limits on emissions.[10] VW has admitted to using the illegal device in its TDI diesel cars.

    ——–

    In a culture of deception & deceit we can readily observe & evidence this continual bamboozling of the mystified citizenry.

    The Bush regime with Zionist Israeli Neo-con “intellectuals” at the steering wheel deliberately & successfully planned & orchestrated the Iraqi weapons of mass destruction DECEPTION.

    Our elected President, George Bush, lied, distorted, & accused the innocent Iraqis of DOING the homicidal horrors of 9-11.

    Whether the murderers did it of their own free will remains problematic.

    Israel ordered the complete destruction of Iraq & the Merican political machine ordered its military machine to stand & deliver.

    One million innocent Iraqis were murdered & Iraqi society was completely demolished.

    All the mayhem, destruction, & murder in Irag is now labelled a “mistake.”

    Mistakes & murderous mistakes are made, alright.

    What is the difference between coldly calculated murder of completely innocent people & a mistake?

    Zionist Israelis know murderous success from a mistake.

    NOT one Israeli died in all this mayhem & murder.

  • “Sadly, we are as invisible to ourselves as we are to men. We learn to see with their eyes—and they are near blind. Our first task, as feminists, is to learn to see with our own eyes.

    If we could see with our own eyes, I believe that we would see that we already have, in embryonic form, the qualities required to overturn the male supremacist system which oppresses us and which threatens to destroy all life on this planet.”

    Thanks Wester. For the whole thing. My experience and outlook are remarkably similar. The quote above almost made the tears flow, almost made them not just well up near the surface….

  • Worldwide power consumption for air conditioning alone is forecast to surge 33-fold (3200 %) by 2100.

    https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2015/oct/26/cold-economy-cop21-global-warming-carbon-emissions