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Thu Apr 2, 2020, 10:32 AM

The Age of Collapse: Why Everything's Collapsing, and What to Do About It

( It's not too late )


umair haque
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Mar 29 · 8 min read

You don’t have to look very hard to see that the great theme of the 21st century so far is sudden, ruinous collapse. America, Britain, Europe — all teetering on the brink. But it’s hardly just countries in a political sense. The planet. A mass extinction of life itself. People’s sense of optimism and faith in the future imploding into nationalism, extremism, fascism. Trust, meaning, belonging, purpose. And now, a pandemic. Bang! Everything, more or less, as far as you look, seems to be collapsing in on itself, as wide as you care to see. Why is that?

If collapse is the theme of this new century, then what’s really weird, strange, and remarkable is that when you really look at all these very different kinds of collapse, whether what’s imploding is economies, societies, minds, food chains, or ecosystems, it seems to follow a specific and characteristic pattern too. The glaciers melt from the bottom. The insects and bees and little fish and mammals are dying off first. The oceans are warming faster than the atmosphere. Economies are imploding because a new class of poor has grown — whether in America, Britain, or Europe.Do you see the pattern yet?

The general pattern of collapse in this new century is implosion from the bottom up. The bottom is chewed through, eviscerated, eaten away, depleted — until nothing is left — by the top. The middle therefore buckles and breaks. The top caves in, eventually, along with it. Whether we look at societies, economies, the planet, or food chains — this pattern of collapse is what seems to characterize now. Of course, I am only speculating, thinking out loud. You are welcome to disagree if you like. But I wonder if you don’t see a tiny grain of truth in what I am observing, too. The bottom is shredded — the middle falls in — the top implodes. Ravaged and depleted, the wholesystem, chain, organization collapses.

Let’s take a few examples. Trumpism and Brexit are obvious cases of this pattern. But this is also what is happening to food chains. It is also what is happening to glaciers and rivers and oceans. It also what was happening in Europe, too — before the pandemic. Everywhere we look today, we see bottom-up collapse — savage, violent, runaway predation, which causes the bottom to be depleted, which causes the middle to implode, which takes the top away with it, too.

https://eand.co/the-age-of-collapse-1b7082b75f04

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Arrow 7 replies Author Time Post
Reply The Age of Collapse: Why Everything's Collapsing, and What to Do About It (Original post)
BeckyDem Apr 2 OP
Kitchari Apr 2 #1
FiveGoodMen Apr 2 #3
NRaleighLiberal Apr 2 #2
appalachiablue Apr 2 #4
BeckyDem Apr 2 #5
appalachiablue Apr 2 #6
BeckyDem Apr 2 #7

Response to BeckyDem (Original post)

Thu Apr 2, 2020, 10:47 AM

1. I like this author's view on what to change

From the article:
We will have to alter the nature of “work” — so far, it basically means “how good you are at exploiting something or someone” — but it must come to mean “how good you are at nourishing and renewing something or someone.” And then we will have to change our social norms and values — and the attitudes they reflect — so that we prize and celebrate and reward the act of nourishment, not just more ruthless, violent predation.

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Response to Kitchari (Reply #1)

Thu Apr 2, 2020, 11:04 AM

3. In other words, we have to dump Capitalism

Because that's ENTIRELY about predation.

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Response to BeckyDem (Original post)

Thu Apr 2, 2020, 10:56 AM

2. entropy and apathy

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Response to BeckyDem (Original post)

Thu Apr 2, 2020, 11:33 AM

4. The drive to privatize US public schools, the postal service, the VA

and anything else is adding to the massive collapse and ruination. In the 1990s Sweden, under a right winger tried privatization of govt. functions- senior homes and schools I believe and they realized their error and rectified things.

Snip

But that is exactly what capitalism and neoliberalism say we should do. Capitalism says we should use up everything for profit — more, more, more profit, in a kind of senseless dance of destruction. Neoliberalism, its handmaiden, says, a little more technically, sitting in the background like an emperor — you must never invest in anything. The goal and purpose of all human organization is never to invest, never to nourish, support, renew, only to consume, exploit, take, possess, own, abuse.

These systems, capitalism, a praxis, a way of practice, and neoliberalism, an ideology, a way of thinking, are what came to dominate the world entire, more or less. But because together capitalism calls for perpetual exploitation, to produce the mindless, ruthless maximization of profit at all costs — and neoliberalism calls for a total lack of investment in anything, whether hospitals, schools, jobs, retirement, not to mention ecosystems, glaciers, or insects. Wham! A catastrophic wave of bottom up collapse, which has spread through economies, societies, polities, nature, psychology, until, at last, there doesn’t seem to be anything left but collapse.

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Response to appalachiablue (Reply #4)

Thu Apr 2, 2020, 11:41 AM

5. Objective rational people cannot argue against the truth here. Yet, there is a dismissal by

corporate media for an honest examination of the roots of the problem. But how can it be objective in nature while being investigative?
If the owners of said media control content and they do, it can be obvious and subtle, its often accomplished by what they leave out.

Its not just Fox News, I wish it were only them.

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Response to BeckyDem (Reply #5)

Thu Apr 2, 2020, 11:50 AM

6. The corporate run, consolidated US media is part of the problem,

and the omission of coverage on many vital areas is glaring.

Here's another new article about challenging far right news over CV falsehoods:

https://www.commondreams.org/views/2020/04/01/we-must-de-trump-airwaves-protect-public-health-amid-covid-19-outbreak

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Response to appalachiablue (Reply #6)

Thu Apr 2, 2020, 12:02 PM

7. Oh, that is going up in GD, for what its worth. Thank you!

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