Growth for the sake of growth is the ideology of the cancer cell. Edward Abbey

31 August 2009

Live your life authentically - not as though you're watching it unfold on a screen before you

In short and simple article, Derrick Jensen makes the connection between hatred of women, hatred of nature and the death urge of modern civilisation. A masterpiece to be read and reread. Print it out if you must, do so on the back side of an already used sheet of paper. Read it whenever you are lost and need direction. I do.

"This is our culture's fundamental flaw. I don't see a tree, I see dollar bills. I don't see a river, I see kilowatts. I don't see a woman "this woman, standing in front of me. I don't see anything, but I project into this space where this woman would be standing, were she to exist, what I've been trained to see. I see a temptress, maybe, or a receptacle for my sex. Or maybe I see every woman who hurt me. The ones who said they loved me, then ran away, or the ones who said they loved me, then tried to change me. I cannot give my heart to someone I don't see, so I give it to no one. I don't give it to woman, man, salmon, tree, or frog."

25 August 2009

Should we seek to save industrial civilisation?

George Monbiot has been on the right track regarding peak oil and climate change for some time, but he has never gone far enough for my liking. He didn't quite come out strongly enough and connect the dots to conclude that civilisation, development, progress and endless expansion must end.

Today I popped in to his blog to see the above headline and I rejoiced. A strong media voice is saying it out aloud. YAY!

Okay so Monbiot didn't say it himself, but it's on his blog at least. He is publishing a debate with deep ecologist Paul Kingsnorth who says:

"Sitting on the desk in front of me are a set of graphs. The horizontal axis of each graph is identical: it represents time, from the years 1750 to 2000. The graphs show, variously, human population levels, CO2 concentration in the atmosphere, exploitation of fisheries, destruction of tropical forests, paper consumption, number of motor vehicles, water use, the rate of species extinction and the totality of the gross domestic product of the human economy.

What grips me about these graphs (and graphs don’t usually grip me) is that though they all show very different things, they have an almost identical shape. A line begins on the left of the page, rising gradually as it moves to the right. Then, in the last inch or so - around the year 1950 - it suddenly veers steeply upwards, like a pilot banking after a cliff has suddenly appeared from
what he thought was an empty bank of cloud.

The root cause of all these trends is the same: a rapacious human economy which is bringing the world very swiftly to the brink of chaos. We know this; some of us even attempt to stop it happening. Yet all of these trends continue to get rapidly worse, and there is no sign of that changing soon. What these graphs make clear better than anything else is the cold reality: there is a serious crash on the way."

Read the full debate. It is music to my ears to hear leading voices in the western world starting to question the very existence of civilisation.

19 August 2009

Toxic "super dump" near Vaal gets the nod

The Weekender reports that govt has given the go ahead for the building of a slime dam near the banks of the Vaal River and adjacent to a nature conservancy. This despite vehement resistance from local communities and environmental activists.

"First Uranium subsidiary Mine Waste Solutions , which will build the mega tailings storage facility, is already clearing the ground and erecting pipes, says Mariette Liefferink, CEO of the Federation for a Sustainable Environment."

According to Liefferink, the proposed super dump will further compromise the already compromised Vaal barrage catchment area, particularly with regards to salts from heavy metals, including radioactive uranium. Read the article by Sarah Hudleston here ...

This article reminds me of the 20 Premises in the book Endgame by Derrick Jensen. For example:

Premise Nineteen: The culture’s problem lies above all in the belief that controlling and abusing the natural world is justifiable.

Premise Two: Traditional communities do not often voluntarily give up or sell the resources on which their communities are based until their communities have been destroyed. They also do not willingly allow their landbases to be damaged so that other resources—gold, oil, and so on—can be extracted. It follows that those who want the resources will do what they can to destroy traditional communities.

View all 20 Premises here ...

17 August 2009

No surprise, chemical companies and US authorities knew dangers of Agent Orange

August 10, 2009 was the first Orange Day organised in Vietnam. It comes as no surprise to read that not only the chemical companies, but also the US authorities, were aware of the potential impact of spraying Agent Orange on vast tracts of Vietnamese jungle in the late 1960s.

Yet they went ahead and did it anyway.

Also of significance is the news that a small percentage of Vietnam vets in the US have managed to get compensation from the chemical companies over the years, but very few Vietnamese victims have been successful.

There's some excellent material by Jon Dillingham and others on the international journal of socialist renewal website and the Thanh Nien website. The latter is the flagship publication of the Vietnam National Youth Federation.

12 August 2009

Farm dumps 'economically worthless' male chicks

This farmer in North West has been dumping up to 70 000 male chicks into an empty dam on his property each week. The practice has been going on for 70 years.

I find the article and comments by the public interesting, as they are largely focused on what this is doing to the environment etc etc.

No one is talking too boldly about that in any given week up to 70 000 young non-human babies are lying and dying in the sun on a hot man-made concrete floor.

FUCK! I hate this so-called civilised society of ours. It is so brutal. Not even the roman empire compares.

Let me repeat one of my favourite quotes by Elizabeth Costello / JM Coetzee:
“We are surrounded by an enterprise of degradation, cruelty, and killing which rivals anything the Third Reich was capable of, indeed dwarfs it, in that ours is an enterprise without end, self-regenerating, bringing rabbits, rats, poultry, livestock ceaselessly into the world for the purpose of killing them.”

Every year, throughout the world, over 45 billion farmed animals are killed for food consumption.