Ushering in the Closing Chapter of the Human Species

The epic assaults being carried out against the vulnerable around the world at this very moment will determine the fate of our species and the living earth itself.  To the powerful this statement is hyperbole at its extreme, but to those of us on the other side there is no condemnation that is too exaggerated when it comes to the destruction of communities and of the biosphere itself.  The attacks are taking place along ancient rivers in the American Dakotas, in the life drenched rain forests of Ecuador, in historic olive groves in Palestine, in the melting tundra of the Arctic circle, in the sun baked Niger Delta, and in the war torn or misery laden shanty’s of Aleppo, Kolkata, Jakarta, Nairobi and beyond.  These may seem like separate instances to some, but they are a part of a global struggle and the outcome will in all likelihood determine our collective future and that of millions of other species that we share this planet with.

This screen shot from a Democracy NOW! video purports to show security dogs used Sept. 3, 2016, to drive back protestors who had overrun the Dakota Access Pipeline worksite north of Cannon Ball, N.D. Images Courtesy Democracy NOW!

indigenous-leaders-from-ecuador-protest-chevrons-deliberate-pollution-of-the-rainforest-photo-from-new-york-timesI believe that the intersectionality of these conflicts are indicative of a broader struggle over guiding principles and mythologies.  Some may see this as an oversimplification, and while I would agree that we should be careful to consider and respect nuance, context and individual histories, there are some general themes which may unite us while there is still time.  These conflicts have been with our species since we began to walk upright.  But now they are global in scale and there are two sides that should be identified above all others.

One side values living beings over profit, and sees protection of the water and the soil and the air as the most fundamental responsibilities of any society.  It values cooperation and generosity above individual ambition.  It shuns all forms of violent coercion, land theft and repression.  It is against aggression and wars of conquest.  It is the way of Community. The other is based upon the dominance of the physically powerful and suppression of the weak. It sees the living planet merely as a means for amassing material profit.  It commodifies everything, living and non.  It values avarice and ruthless competition over cooperation. It believes the only viable way forward is through suppression of dissent, ridicule, marginalization of the poor and the downtrodden, jingoistic nationalism and organized State violence.  It is the way of Empire.

palestinian-protesters-stand-amid-blazes-set-by-settlers-to-their-olive-groves-photo-source-transcend

canadian-paramilitary-forces-attack-indigenous-elsipogtog-mi-kmaq-first-nation-and-local-residents-as-they-blockaded-a-new-brunswick-fracking-exploration-site-photo-from-common-dreams

activists-in-port-harcourt-nigeria-photo-source-earth-first-journalThe language of Empire is duplicitous.  It employs the parlance of pale euphemisms like sustainability, austerity or free trade to obscure its true authoritarian and feudalistic intentions.  It encourages nationalistic sentimentality and racial and ethnic division to obscure the reality of its imposed classism.  It objectifies the living planet through clever marketing and branding with such subtle ease that it becomes ever more difficult to decipher and parse.  But in the end the Empire cannot cloak the stench of a dying world forever with catchy jingles, cynical ploys, shiny new objects, paranoid bigotries or vapid distractions.

In their quest to maintain and grow their coffers, the powerful see the dissolving ice cap as a strategic business opportunity for geopolitical advancement.  They see the growing difficulty in extracting high quality petroleum as an excuse to erase ancient mountaintops, pierce deep ocean trenches and scrape away primeval forests for less viable and more earth damaging fossil fuels.  They see growing inequities between us and the handful of people who own half the world’s wealth as opportunities for enhanced security walls and surveillance.  They see hunger and famine as a chance to litter the world with pesticides and chemically or genetically altered food or factory farms which are little more than massive concentration camps for sentient beings.  They see flattened forests and fouled rivers as a way of moving indigenous peoples into overcrowded, cordoned off corporate colonies for easier exploitation, social control and abandonment.  And if they continue on their path the world they are forging will rival every other civilization in history in atrocity, repression and misery.

President Clinton And President George W. Bush Photo by Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images

Trump and Clinton. Getty Images.

Oil Executives. Source: Chip Somodevilla/Getty ImagesThe war the Empire is waging is not about isms or ideologies, it is about power, exploitation and wealth.  And to those of us being assaulted the cause is as urgent as it is dire.  It is literally about life and death.  We see the rising tides of an ever imperiled, acidic sea. We walk in the fallow fields where there may be no crops harvested tomorrow.  We breathe the acrid air choked out by smokestacks of insatiable, blind industry.  We see the walls and borders and checkpoints and guard dogs and police tanks and surveillance cameras and detention camps burgeoning as if unstoppable.  We hear the drums of imperialistic war being beaten every day of every year.  And we stand in shock at the unquenchable lust for wealth that stain the halls of power even as they dig our dusty mass graves.  When we sound the alarm or even raise concern about any of this we can expect to be ignored, chided or silenced by the powerful in the media, corporations, the military or political establishment or even clergy.  We anticipate being co-opted by the ruling oligarchy or by cynical corporate interests.  But we are weary of this kind of marginalization and we aren’t going down without a fight.

protectors-of-the-water-north-dakota-source-bbc

ST. LOUIS, MO - MARCH 14: Ferguson activists march through downtown during a protest on March 14, 2015 in St. Louis, Missouri. St. Louis and the nearby town of Ferguson have experienced many protests, which have often been violent, since the death of Michael Brown who was shot and killed by a Ferguson police officer in August. On Wednesday evening two police officers were shot while they were securing the Ferguson police station during a protest. (Photo by Scott Olson/Getty Images)

Officials observe indigenous people protesting in BrazilThe powerful will not stop waging their war this year or next.  It will undoubtedly play out and grow for the next few decades even as the planet’s ecosystem’s spiral and crash, because dollar signs and dominance are all they truly understand.   This is not just another chapter in some unending saga of the human story.  It is not something that any resident of planet earth can afford to sit out.   If they are victorious this war may very well usher in the closing chapter of the human species and far sooner than anyone could ever imagine.  We must join with each other if only to ease each others suffering, or bring one small amount of justice to the oppressed, or to protect one small river way or field or stretch of beach.  This war they are waging is against the living planet and their own future whether they realize it or not.  But even if they do not care about their children’s future, we must.

a-native-american-woman-sits-on-a-bluff-in-north-dakota-at-the-pipeline-protest-source-the-guardianKenn Orphan 2016


39 thoughts on “Ushering in the Closing Chapter of the Human Species

  1. We Are All Ready Baked in to a 6C. Temp. Rise, even if we stopped emitting Right Now !

    “Professor Chris Field is bullshitting the planet. On whether 1.5C is still feasible” Kevin Hester

    Heating Up, Burning Up, with Record Breaking Rain, Year after Year !

    “The message is already clear, that if the world does want to strive to limit warming to 1.5C or less, we don’t have very much of the carbon budget left.” Professeor Chris Field

    “There is no carbon budget any more and 5C is baked in according to both Shell petroleum and the International Energy Authority. ” Kevin Hester

    With Record Breaking Wind, Hurricanes, Tornadoes, Earth Quakes, Rain, Snow and Heat !.

    That are HIGHER, Than Normal ! We are going to go Off the Charts !

    There is No Atmospheric Budget For More Carbon, Methane, or Nuclear !

    We must Stop the Koch bros, Warren Buffets, Bill Gates, and their Fossil Fuel allies from FUKUSHIMIATIZING Us !

    Greenland is Melting and Calving Now, Jonas just went over Greenland at above Freezing Temps, for the first Time in the Dead of Winter 2016

    “And for the Winter of 2016 it’s possible that the Arctic may never experience typical conditions.

    For, according to NOAA, the first half of February saw this record, Spring-like, warmth extend on through today.

    It’s as if these coldest zones in the Northern Hemisphere haven’t yet experienced Winter

    — as if the freak storm that drove Arctic temperatures to record levels during late December has, ever since, jammed the thermometer into typical April levels and left it stuck there. ” Robert Scribbler

    Greenland has 20 Feet of Sea Level Rise !

    Now is the Time for Feed in Tariff Clean Kilowatts, Home Owners and Commercial Business owners selling Renewable Energy, Wind and Solar to the Utility !

    Dump Net Metering (Second Utility) Third Party Leasing.

    Protect Our Communities with Solar Policies that keep the Money in the Wallets and Purses of Head of House Holds.

    In Order to Ready Themselves for coming, Record Breaking Rain, Wind, Snow and Temps.

    Food Shortages, Heat,, Floods, Fire, Quakes, Volcanoes, Hurricanes. and Sea Level Rising 220 Feet !

    With Ca. Residential and Commercial Feed in Tariff

    Help Protect Hard Working, Tax Paying, Voting, Citizens from our Koch Bros, Warren Buffet, Warren Gates, Fossil Fueled Energy and Water Policies !

    We Need To Decommission are Nuclear Reactors Now !

    And Relocate to above 3,000 Feet !

    Each 1C. Temp Rise, Atmospheric Moisture increases 7%

    We have increased Temp 1.7C. and Climbing

    1850 ppm Carbon 270

    1980 ppm carbon 350

    2015 ppm of Carbon 405 and Rising

    2016 ppm carbon 412 and rising !

    What will the ppm of Carbon be when Greenland All Melts ?

    Diablo Nuclear, San Onofre Fuel Rods, and All Nuclear needs to be relocated to 3000 feet above Sea Level

    Over 3 Million Years of Waxing and Waning From the Poles, with the Arctic Keeping North America Cool, Now it is Greenland Because of Fossil Fuels !

    Massive Sea Life Die Off on Pacific and Atlantic Coast !

    Pacific and Atlantic Oceans 4 – 18 degrees warmer than Normal

    Antarctica has 200 feet of Sea Level Rise

    Arctic Region Warming Twice as fast as the rest of the planet !

    Over 440 Nuclear Reactors at Sea Level Now !

    From Kevin Hester comes this message: Professor Guy McPherson will be touring New Zealand in November 2016 talking about Runaway Abrupt Climate Change. Regular updates are provided at KevinHester.Live and Facebook events will be created as the date draws near.
    ______

    Sign and Share for a Ca. Residential Feed in Tariff. Go to the youtube site, look six inches below video, click on Show More, then click on blue link to sign the petition.

    Attachments area
    Preview YouTube video We Need To Ban Fracking.
    We Need To Ban Fracking.
    Attachments area

    Liked by 1 person

  2. An awesome essay which I have reposted on both my Facebook pages and shared on twitter and google. Tragic. But awesome. I am grateful for your blogging and for this essay.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. If you look in the IMF / UN definition of sustainability, it isn’t even actually about protecting habitats & other species … it is simply a euphemism for “what can commerce get away with”, and if they deem they can get away with it, then any failure to be sustainable from the perspective of some species or ecosystem is deemed not to count.

    If you’d like to read my own work on the quantification of Ecological & Social Justice & Sustainability as a basis for systems of non-species-biased, non-property/trade/currency-based & non-hierarchical (aka anarchic) law economics & politics >> http://www.open-empire.org

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you. I’m a non educated 65 yr old woman and found this essay to be extremely informative. I look forward to your upcoming fb posts as November draws near. Signed, a cracking yes vote to a NO cracking vote

      Liked by 1 person

  4. Very good eassays and very stealing points. However, like 99% of very good eassays with very strong pro-intersectional points, it leaves the intersects with nonhuman animals, the voracious machine of animals agriculture, the violence created with yuppie concepts such as “humane meat” and how that furthers humans justification on commodifying animals’ bodies, how patriarchy controls the reproductive systems of nonhumans, how heterosexism is rampant and the ‘esterilization’ of animals’ genitals plays a huge role in suppressing their sexual orientation and gender identity, how gay animals are of no use to the industry, how the mass incarceration of nonhumans affects them and how that affects our perception of what prisons are, how race intersects and how the dehumanization of humans of color by white people quite often refer to nonhumans in order to establish who is worthy and who isn’t. Tons to be explored.

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    1. Muddled , but making important points which have to be addressed if a better world situation is to be achieved . The biosphere and all that is in it is hyper subtle and complex , yet based on simple concepts .
      If we ignore these then we will lose

      Like

    2. I agree, the only possible “humane meat” is the prospect of lab-grown muscle tissue … I’m vegetarian and glad they’ve invented it, though extremely unlikely to eat it just because it’s humane (ie – no sentient animal attached).

      I don’t think I’d characterise it as “patriarchy” being the causal problem, as there’s plenty of us males who disagree, and plenty of women in positions of power who betray other females (of all species) and whom agree with the abuse.

      The true problem is caused by the hierarchical power structures, which are yes dominated by men, but even those men are supported by women, and it’s also the entire property/trade/currency-based capitalist economic paradigm, which commoditises living beings as a thing to be exploited.

      I guarantee you that if you replace patriarchy with matriarchy (or neither) but keep the existing capitalist economic paradigm, there’s enough psychopaths of both sexes to continue all forms of abuse … and it is the economic paradigm plus the control of violent authority which gives those in power the capacity to do what others may object to.

      If you didn’t see the link above, check out my work here >> http://www.open-empire.org

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      1. Just because women are involved doesn’t mean said women are not pushing a patriarchal agenda. Most women on the planet have no idea patriarchy has influenced their entire existence; and women in power who betray other women have no idea their entire lives and set of beliefs and values have been contfolled by patriarchal ideals. Denying that patriarchy has anything to do with the current state of the world is just… Laughable.

        Liked by 1 person

      2. I wasn’t denying it, quite to the contrary, and I totally agree with your other points to some degree … I’m merely pointing out that you cannot validly lay claim to any certainty that 100% of the blame is at the feet of “patriarchy” … NOR am I saying that patriarchy is a good thing … NOR am I (technically) defending patriarchy at all … I’m merely seeking a more accurate depiction of the total gamut of variables which result in the injustices that you mention … and pointing out that in such analysis we must acknowledge that:

        1 – there are patriarchal families and communities that do not commit these injustices;

        2 – there are both patriarchal and non-patriarchal men who do not commit nor agree with these injustices;

        3 – there are both patriarchal and non-patriarchal females who support these injustices … and;

        4 – the motivational basis outside and independent of patriarchy, which rewards people for such injustices, is the property/trade/currency-based economic paradigm.

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  5. Well-written – phew, I was ready for some New Age-y tosh. Insightful, intelligent and pertinent. Nice one. The question for all human time, and especially now is: how does the ‘community’ side prevent the violence of the ‘Empire’ side? I used to be an Anarchist in terms of political and philosophical thinking. A proper social Anarchist (go and read Kropotkin/Bakunin/Guy Debord etc if you don’t know what that means). And that was to do with my faith in human nature. But I am no longer. Why? Because we need to have some rational and consistent way of dealing with the warlords who will destroy and exploit community given half a chance. I have come to appreciate the rule of law as a system. Because – in general, when it works properly – it is fair and impartial. That is what the role of government should be in this new corporatised era. To prioritise and uphold the rule of law and access to it for all, to defend and protect citizens from corporations and other bullies. It should be authority granted to a temporary few by and for ‘the community’ side. The other method that works is Gandhism. Non-violent direct action. But it has to be on a massive scale. In the absence of governments fulfilling the role of ‘guardians of the community’, this maybe the only solution. But we need to do it on a MASSIVE scale. When it is just a few die-hard Greenpeace activists, it will always get written off as a form of extremism. So, I’m ready when you are. Let’s get going before it’s too late.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Andy you may be very pleased to hear I’ve solved the dilemma you speak of regarding the downsides of anarchy with respect to organising … namely I’ve developed a Project Collaboration Development & Resource Allocation Framework which utilises the principles of Ecological Systems Modelling & Thermodynamics for the quantification of Ecological & Social Justice & Sustainability to in turn create systems of non-species-biased, non-property/trade/currency-based & non-hierarchical (aka anarchic) law economics & politics >> http://www.open-empire.org … in which people are both individually & collectively motivated to act (both for short medium & long term objectives) without any hierarchical authority, but simply by motivating them to minimisation of negative & maximisation of positive ecological & social consequences of their actions and the actions of others.

      So for example:

      – if a “bad” person was to band together a group of thugs, in order to rob or enslave or manipulate others, this has a deleterious set of consequences that vastly outweighs any quantifiable benefits they could achieve (short of destroying the system should that be their objective) … and had they just instead done something good to earn access to whatever resources they wanted (much of which they’d have received anyway without even needing to show cause for access, if such resources are abundant), they’d have been much better off in the first place;

      – thus doing harm is itself demotivated / disincentivised by the system;

      – simultaneously, if they go ahead and do it anyway, then stopping them and restoring things to order becomes a very quantifiably valuable objective, and while some may choose to specialise in: negotiating / reasoning with such people to cease and desist their activities; psychoanalysing whether they can be trusted not to repeat; providing means of incarceration & treatment / rehabilitation of the psychologically disturbed, and; as a last resort, “bounty hunters” who deal with the worst cases that perhaps (sadly) cannot be dealt with any other way … ie – executioners, not as punishment but as pragmatism to save the innocent from extreme cases … no judgement or authority comes into it, it’s simply a matter that the person’s death has become quantifiably less harmful – including in psychosocial terms – than the damage they do if allowed to continue.

      So we can even have people who specialise in NON-authoritative NON-hierarchical “police” and paramilitary type of work … because they’re not enforcing a law or someone’s will, they’re simply preventing harm (which is the very thing such activities should have been from the start) … and they’re motivated to police themselves and each other (as are others motivated to police them), with no one having authority over the other, and everyone kept in check by the exact same scientifically based analysis of harm and good of actions that everyone is personally responsible for … IN OTHER WORDS: killing and incarceration are neither authorised nor non-authorised, as that simply doesn’t come into the equation. It’s just a matter of refraining from such actions until the quantifiable probability of or actual harm against innocent people or other species etc. (with others specialising in the (semi)automated & manual collection, calculation and evolution of such data) becomes deleterious enough to warrant the case … because even though it’s warranted, the actor must still take responsibility for the action, so the value of doing so must VASTLY outweigh the consequences of all other possible actions, as no one wants to destroy their own statistics … thus people are motivated to attempt diplomatic and other means if at all possible.

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  6. La planète devrait être un bien universel , ou nous devrions tous avoir accès a l’eau potable et à la terre , et vivre en harmonie avec mère nature ! Hors , les multinationales se sont appropriées les terres , l’eau les forêts , et ont pollué IMPUNÉMENT la totalité de cette planète , il n’y a pas une espèce qui vaille plus qu’une autre , , la nature n’est pas une marchandise …

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  7. Important and focused on the real issues leading to the systematic collapse of life on this planet. Unfortunately, it’s the masses that need to understand this, not the readers that already support your views and the masses don’t care and don’t fathom anything beyond mass culture and controlled media.

    Liked by 1 person

  8. Wonderfully put. The dominator/animal side/dark side seems to be winning, but we must not give up. Higher consciousness and love can always win. And while we must not sit out, we must not resort to violence. Violence is the quintessential dominator action. Our revolution must be a peaceful one, it must be a revolution of hearts, and of changing minds. We can band together and simply say, “We will not be a part of your rape of this planet. We are human, we have value, and all life has value.” We can only do it together. But you have to wake up to what is going on before you can stand against it. The way to fight is to change your own mind, to change your own activities, and even realize how some of your desires may be harming the planet. The change begins with the individual. And then the individual can take down the empire… but not alone, only together.

    Liked by 1 person

  9. So many of us out here feel the urgency and hopelessness! And yes, we won’t go down without a fight. But, unless we all stand up together, we will never prevail. We are all connected, no doubt, but not including our fellow earthlings in the concept of intersectionality leaves out a huge factor in our success or failure on this planet. And our evolution to a more just and moral civilization.

    Liked by 1 person

  10. We must erase the dividing invisible lines. Monitary hoarding and financial classification needs to be abolished. Until the planet’s inhabitants accept one another as a whole, and provide sustinence equally, no matter what particularities, and only then, if the species evolves in it’s entirety, is it possible for the earth to provide a residencial habitat.

    Time has now run out! Head to the highest ground? Perhaps self contained ocean worthy vessels are the only short termed survival options. Then under ice?

    The top of the food chain has to realise it’s total environment, its surrounding as a whole, a contained ecosphere. Unless this occurs, and immediately…we will watch in horror… as a mass extinction is eminant.

    Leissa

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  11. To my observation carbon is not really the big deal in climate change though, since more carbon regrows the vegetation we need. The big deal is geo engineering. The climate chaos is organised weather warfare.

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  12. One thing this statement misses: there is one particular creed or ideology that is the driving force behind this empirical destruction, and that is part of its deliberate intent. It wants all peoples subject to its controlling will, and it particularly hates indigenous peoples, because they have a land-based independence and so cannot be easily controlled and exploited. So this ideology does everything it can to force them off their lands, away from their water and seed and housing and medicine, and even out of their cultural beliefs and values.

    This statement puts the profit motive as primary (for the most part. Once it also mentions ‘dominance’, but that seems to be in service to profit). But the ideology or Ism I am talking about only sees money as a means to an end. And the End is, first, total dominance and control of the Earth and all its peoples, and second, total destruction of the Earth and all its peoples by its vengeful and violent god, and their ascension to a heaven promised only to them. Yes, they control the large majority of money and financial systems on Earth, as part of this creed, but that is only a step and a tool, not the End Game.

    This creed or Ism has been operating since old testament times, was operating in new testament times, and has changed and spread since then in different forms, but always faithful to the original destructive, vengeful, controlling, power-mad and genocidal vision. It was behind the ‘revolutions’ of the 17 and 1800’s, including the French, American and Russian revolutions, the last of which slaughtered 40-66 million, and created the largest prison state, the gulag system, up until that time. The US may have surpassed it now. At the direction of this maniac creed, we may be sure.

    Nuclear weapons, gmo agri-business, mass chemical usage amounting to wholesale degradation of the human stock worldwide, toxic global vaccine programs, economic austerity devastating whole nations, devastating fossil fuel energy infrastructure, toxic and damaging ‘health care’ systems, perpetual and vast war, especially in the middle east (but not Israel), support for tyrannical and oppressive regimes and other extremist ideologies, and wholesale exhaustion and destruction of the Earth and all its resources, living or inanimate, is its work in our times.

    The clues are all here. This statement does not mention the name of this creed, and I will not either. But let us be clear: it is behind all that is mentioned, and more. It is the taproot of evil, and no going down without a fight can fail to address it. In fact, if it is addressed directly, the fight can actually win and we will not go down. If we don’t, the fight will likely be ineffective, and down we go. While ‘they’ rise to their promised heaven from the ashes and ruins of the entire Earth.

    Unless

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