Tuesday, 27 August 2013

The state preparing for collapse?

I read this article in the Guardian newspaper and it made me wonder.  It seems the US and I imagine other governments are preparing for much more dissent as resources become depleted, as climate change bites.  If, as is suggested, they are spying on us due to their concern that we will become more radicalised and more active as this happens, then I imagine there are several unpleasant possibilities including martial law running through their wargames.   
But the thing that struck me quite forcibly was that the state is preparing and that they take this very seriously, my question is why don't we?
Why are we so distracted, why is this not headline news?  Why are we not  shouting about this and about the likely impacts of climate change? 
While many, the heroic activists on the front lines, are, many, many, more of us are sitting quietly at home.  A story  which I have heard is that shortly before his death, Bakunin was asked what he feared and that he is supposed to have replied that he feared the embourgoisement of the working class, because it would mean an end to the struggle....
I fear that this is where we are.  We have so many luxuries and we do not want to lose them.  Most of us in the global North have enough to eat (or far too much) and a roof over our heads and running water etc, the status quo is doing ok by us.  I know that this is not true for everybody and that with the ongoing austerity, even in the global North people are feeling it.  But if the state is preparing for collapse, then how stable is our security?  Can we really count on it? 

Wednesday, 21 August 2013

In overshoot

Yesterday was Earth Overshoot Day.   From here on in we are eating into "natural capital".    We have used in 8 months, the planetary budget for the year.  As we talk about financial austerity, where is the discussion of our need to limit our environmental consumption?  The contradiction clearly expressed at Rio +20 between our "who dies with the best toys wins" culture which sees consumption as enviable and our need to adapt in the face of the oncoming crisis is once again highlighted. 

We must adapt or collapse.

Tuesday, 20 August 2013

Fighting the good fight

The news from Balcombe has been fairly positive.  The outpouring of public support and mobilisation has, it is to be hoped made Caudrilla take pause.  And seeing a politician show some ethical spine has made a pleasant change, and she says it very well.
One concern is the possibility of an increased financial incentive leading to more division
Locally, Clair ridge drilling has moved closer with the installation of platform jackets
and the contrast is quite striking, there is no protest,  talk is of jobs.  To some degree the debate regarding the independence referendum next year and the way which North Sea Oil plays into that debate, seems to be overshadowing local environmental concerns.  The most pressing environmental concern I have really heard discussed, besides litter, seems to be a distinct lack of mackerel locally this year, and fisheries politics is definitely involved. 

My respect for the activists around the world, many of whom risk their lives to fight for the planet increases, and even though I am very cynical, their actions do give me a bit of hope.

Sunday, 4 August 2013

Fracking UK government!

According to The Guardian newspaper, government is instructing local planners that if they receive an application for fracking in their area, they are not allowed to consider whether renewables would be a "better fit" in their local area. 
What can I say, as the drama at Balcombe unfolds, our plutocratic government is showing their true colours once again.  This is utterly irresponsible of  a government, when we stand at the very brink of the crisis.