Shortly after Cain murdered Abel and then founded the first city, more cities began to dot the Mesopotamian landscape. The rewards of civilization allowed relatively few people to feed the majority, with the biggest rewards going to a select, powerful minority. From those days forward, cities have allowed, in Stanley Diamond’s words, “conquest abroad and repression at home.”
We cannot use politics as usual to deal with energy decline. Ditto for runaway greenhouse. In other words, there is no viable political solution to deal with either issue.
At some point, not so far away, nature becomes the ultimate authority. And that’s when I’ll stop fighting authority. At that point, I’ll need a new theme song. Got any ideas?
As usual, I have good news if you don’t like the direction the government and culture have taken: the problem’s going to take care of itself. When the empire completes its fall, when the federal government loses the ability to control everything from foreign wars to domestic sex acts, when the dollar’s even further in the toilet and the transportation networks are completely impotent, when the cheerleader-in-chief of American Empire can no longer destroy the lands and waters and the organisms on which we all depend, that’s when we can bury the neoconservative agenda.
“Without extra investment to raise production, the natural annual rate of output decline is 9.1 per cent.” Energy experts generally agree that a 2 per cent annual decline in extraction of crude oil translate to reasonably painful adaptation and the cessation of economic growth, a five per cent declines spell very painful adjustments and an economic depression of unprecedented magnitude, and a ten per cent decline means societal breakdown at a monumental scale.
That was 1971. Before the first oil crisis. Before the Iran hostage crisis. Before globalization ruled our lives. Simpler times, for sure. Just about everybody in Weippe was an FDR Democrat, dedicated to strong workers’ rights and a decent social safety net.
Thus, I trace the demise of political parties as disparate entities to Reagan’s election in 1980. With the 1980 election, the United States embraced a single ideology: economic growth. Political party no longer mattered because the ideology crossed party lines. And this dangerous ideology absolutely required imperialism.