On the other hand, Ty’s loneliness in a crowded world, induced by his intellect and his passion for the planet, remind me of an email message I received a few months back from a brilliant former student. It included this pithy line, which says, better than I ever have, my oft-felt sentiment: “Despite overpopulation I find the world a lonely place.”
The evidence is gaining increasing clarity: We’ve reached a crossroads unlike any other in human history. One path leads to despair for Homo industrialis. The other leads to extinction, for Homo sapiens and the millions of species we are taking with us into the abyss. I’ll take door number one.
We make sheep look well-informed and introspective.
A collapse in the world’s industrial economy is producing the expected results, finally, too late to save thousands of species we’ve sent into the abyss, but perhaps barely in time to save a few remaining species, including our own. If you care about other species and cultures, or even the continued persistence of our own species, then you support our imminent return to the post-industrial stone age. Such a return saves the maximum number of human lives, over the long term.
I never cease to be amazed by the number of people, on this blog and elsewhere, who believe the supply of oil is infinite, and the similar number who believe we’ll innovate, conserve, or organize our way out of our oil addiction. I use “believe” intentionally, because there’s no evidence of any thinking going on. If there were is evidence to support the notion we’ll get through the year without capitulation of the Dow, please bring it forward, and soon.
Will we transform immediately and totally into ill-behaved rats, clustered in a cage without food? Perhaps, at least in the cages known as cities, particularly when the food runs out, along with the water. But people in the “tribes” known as neighborhoods and communities will try to get along, at least for a while, at least while we’re all suffering more-or-less equally. Small communities will be particularly well-suited for the hard times ahead. The neighborhoods of suburbia, on the other hand, are particularly poorly suited for neighborly behavior of the Mr. Rogers kind. Indeed, sprawling American suburbs seem to have been designed specifically for anonymity and therefore uncaring, unfriendly neighbors.
Here’s the agenda, to be completed within a year or two: (1) find, develop, and distribute an energy source too cheap to meter, and (2) overcome evolution.