The Sky Really Is Falling

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"The rapid and terrifying acceleration of global warming, which is disfiguring the ecosystem at a swifter pace than even the gloomiest scientific studies predicted a few years ago, has been confronted by the power elite with two kinds of self-delusion. There are those, many of whom hold elected office, who dismiss the science and empirical evidence as false. There are others who accept the science surrounding global warming but insist that the human species can adapt. Our only salvation—the rapid dismantling of the fossil fuel industry—is ignored by both groups. And we will be led, unless we build popular resistance movements and carry out sustained acts of civil disobedience, toward collective self-annihilation by dimwitted pied pipers and fools."

"Horticulturalists are busy planting swamp oaks and sweet gum trees all over Chicago to prepare for weather that will soon resemble that of Baton Rouge. That would be fine if there was a limit to global warming in sight. But without plans to rapidly dismantle the fossil fuel industry, something no one in our corporate state is contemplating, the heat waves of Baton Rouge will be a starting point for a descent that will ultimately make cities like Chicago unlivable. The false promise of human adaptability to global warming is peddled by the polluters’ major front group, the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, which informed the Environmental Protection Agency that “populations can acclimatize to warmer climates via a range of behavioral, physiological, and technological adaptations.” This bizarre theory of adaptability has been embraced by the Obama administration as it prepares to exploit the natural resources in the Arctic. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton announced recently that melting of sea ice “will result in more shipping, fishing and tourism, and the possibility to develop newly accessible oil and gas reserves.” Now that’s something to look forward to."

They haven’t begun to internalize the idea that the science has shifted sharply. We are no longer talking about a long, slow, gradual, linear warming, but something that is coming much more quickly and violently. Seven or eight years ago it made sense to talk about putting permeable concrete on the streets. Now what we are coming to realize is that the most important adaptation we can do is to stop putting carbon in the atmosphere. If we don’t, we are going to produce temperature rises so high that there is no adapting to them.” - Chris Hedges

Complete article and current consequences here:

Retired Monk - "Ideology is a disease"

Jul. 31, 2007 4:01 pm


polycarp2, you make an excellent point.

"There is more than one way to skin a cat" - slightly morbid, but true.

If it becomes difficult to propose legislation and enforce it, that is, to stop carbon emissions, then absorbing that carbon through planting trees in private economy would help. I once heard someone say that if you can't stop someone from throwing tomatoes at you, then make ketchup with those tomatoes.

If you can't stop carbon emissions directly, then as private citizens we can stop them indirectly, by absrorbing that carbon with plants that use up lots of carbon in their photosynthesis. Thanks for the idea!

Feb. 7, 2011 4:57 pm

You have identified a possible problem. But we have yet to find a solution. We cannot put wind mills or giant solar farms on every street corner. That would not be nearly enough energy to satisfy our booming population. The feds won't let us use nuke power. Even though nuke power is probably the safest form of enery we have ever had. Thousands of people have died harvesting oil or coal. Very few people have died as a result of nuke power. The stats prove Nuke is safe.

Most people are living paycheck to paycheck. They cannot afford to pay 4 bucks a gallon for gas. The EPA and the feds love to complain about the oil industry. Yet that is all they offer. Complaints. If I had another reasonable alternative to gasoline, I would use it in a heartbeat. Our government has failed us. They have provided no innovation. Only complaints. The only option is for the free market to solve this. The government must get out their way. It's all about economics. Provide a better option and we will take it. Just don't punish us for using the only option that we have. the rich will still be able to gas up their jets and yachts. Prices don't effect them much. It's the rest of us working slobs who suffer. We need a better option. And if the feds can't find it, they need to get the hell out of the way. In the mean time. I have purchased my last car that gets less than 35mpg. What about you?

rigel1's picture
Jan. 31, 2011 7:49 am

I see a conundrum with looking to free markets for an answer. Gasoline - $4.00. minus speculators - $2.40. minus taxes - $2.20. minus mandatory clean air formula - $2.00 (let's say). Your $30,000 hybrid. minus mandatory hardware (inluding seat belts and such) - what? $20,000? Take out the MPG increasing technology and what? $7000? To be silly, what woud a Trabant cost?

I own a taxi. To do my business - buy the car, maintanence, buy a 2-way radio, hire phone answerers and dispatchers, all that, costs about $25,000 a year. A used police car and some yellow paint would cost less than half that, but it's damn near impossible to explain that to people who complain about why it's so hard to get a taxi to answer a radio call in a neighborhood that produces an order less than once an hour. You've said that you would gladly buy a competatively priced alternative fuel car, and that you will not buy a car getting less that 35MPG, but what if you could buy a 15MPG car for $7000 and fill it with $2.00 gas? No one would possibly make an alternative.

My point is, obviously, that under the normal definition of free trade (unless your definition includes market manipulation) gasoline would be so cheap and dirty that the entire world would have more traffic than L.A. and more smog than Mexico City. Unless you add in the cost of the consequences, such as respiratory disease, then the price of gas goes up to something like $10.00, but to enforce that price requires government interference.

doh1304's picture
Dec. 6, 2010 10:49 am


When you speak of "the feds," I take it you're talking about the federal level elected officials. They're puppets. And their strings are being pulled by free marketeers, who are heavily invested in maintaining the status quo.

You must be pretty pleased with Obama's pro-nuclear rhetoric.

Garrett78's picture
Sep. 3, 2010 9:20 am

Well, we already have the "free market" solution. Government has pretty much stayed out of the way.. Anyday now, the fossil fuel industry will announce their development of alternative energies. LOL.

Oil companies have generously not increased their margins of profit. A 10% mark-up on $30 a barrel oil is $3. A ten per cent mark up on $100 a barrel oil is $10. Not bad....and record profits..

As oil supplies deplete and costs go up, they'll do enormously well...selling less.. Alternative energy wouldn't really be in their best interests. Their lobbyists do what they can to keep things as they are...and are admirably successful at their task..

A government crash program to develop alternatives and save our fannies is off the table. That would be free market interference cutting into oil co. bottom lines...

Retired Monk - "Ideology is a disease".

Jul. 31, 2007 4:01 pm

The America I Knew Has Almost Disappeared

Like an alcoholic family that won't discuss alcoholism (and proving Don Quixote's warning to never mention rope in the home of a man who's been hanged), far too many Americans are unwilling to acknowledge or even discuss the ongoing collapse of democracy in the United States.

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