Archive for the ‘Ecology’ Category

Ongoing German Lies, And Why They Matter, Destroying Europe, & World. 1) Ecology

August 23, 2019

Some German anti-democratic lies have been ruling the world, for two decades now. It’s high time to get rid of them. A combination of Trump and progressive minds such as Uber-influential Nobel Paul Krugman of the New York Times, may well succeed to amplify my meek bleating in the dark.

Our times are cataclysmic, apocalyptic: after all, a sixth mass extinction has been launched. To stop it, we need the truth. Nothing but the truth, and all of it… that is we must denounce lies, and lying temperaments. We need science, that is, what’s left  

Trump lies outrageously, everybody knows this, but he is not the only one, all too many forget the latter. I have long said that Merkel’s Germany was off the track, and a big lie, in so many ways. Consider my Merkler? essay of 2012. Some will scoff that only Greeks got injured. No, all of Europe, and also Merkler’s insanity caused Brexit. I was ahead of times: now, seven years later, this point of view is gaining broad acceptance.

The camp of those who think Germany is lying has grown a lot: Trump is in it, and now even Trump’s nemesis Paul Krugman agrees with the liar in chief on Germany. German readers may object that France also lies (and everybody knows about delusional, Brexiting UK). However German lies are convenient for French corrupt politicians, Germany (in spite of all the fascist dictators), having a reputation for seriousness.

One may even argue that Germany ended up with monsters such as the Kaiser and Hitler, precisely because it had such  a serious, quasi-scientific repute… A belief in perfection which the Germans were the first to believe. 

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Energiewende Lie: Germany produces twice more CO2 per head than France (though about half of the USA). Worse: present policy does not make any improvement possible. In contrast, the USA has been best in the world at reducing CO2 emissions (albeit from a high starting point)…German Chancellor Merkel originated, lie has been “Energiewende”. the “Energy Transition“… which has consisted into Germany tapping some more coal, the bedrock of its heavy industry, for centuries.

Germany used its clout in environmentally correct policies (a lie!) to instill a mood of keeping on burning CO2 to produce energy, and, in particular, for burning coal. This has spread to all of Europe, and beyond:

https://www.ips-journal.eu/regions/europe/article/show/europes-coal-problem-3523/

Cute little picture… Full of lies, and implied dread. For example the picture describes and expect a lowering of energy consumption in Germany. All that means is that Germany is importing more, including nuclear from France. “Biomass” is a lie: it means making CO2 by burning old forests: it worsens the CO2 problem, planet-wide.

The truth is that, at this point, we have two new energy sources: photovoltaics and nuclear. Photovoltaics doesn’t work everywhere, and all the time. Nuclear is vast: U 235 fission, U 233 fission, Thorium, fusion, etc. Some have nuclear waste, others, not really. Even U 235 fission can be realized in many ways. The important point is that both danger and waste can be avoided completely using some nuclear technologies.

Nuclear devices will have to be developed, just to colonize other planets:

https://www.space.com/nuclear-propulsion-future-spacecraft-nasa-chief.html

I am positively completely, even fanatically against some nuclear technologies, such as graphite-gas (see Chernobyl for the inconvenience), surgenerators (with present tech), or second generation U235 reactors. At Fukushima, three such reactors exploded and melted down (due to a litany of grave errors). In the end, the radiation stayed confined: babies can now use the Fukushima beach… (Contrarily to expectations.)

Germany is against nuclear some will say, because it is more interested to milk coal for as long as possible. It’s not about higher principles, but greed. Germany has said, explicitly, under Merkel, that nuclear was more of a danger than coal. Now we can see how false that is: the greenhouse is accelerating. Siberia was on fire, for weeks, now so is the Amazon:

Following expanding wildfires in the Amazon rainforest, NOAA/NASA’s Suomi NPP satellite captured a natural-color image of smoke above South America using the VIIRS (Visible Infrared Imaging Radiometer Suite) instrument on Wednesday (Aug. 21). The image shows smoke above the Brazilian states of Amazonas (upper left), Para (upper right), Mato Grosso (lower right) and Rondonia (lower left). Lake Titicaca in Bolivia is visible, so are the Chilean and Peruvian coasts. Fires in the Amazonian rain forest used to be unthinkable… And so was our planet’s climate, unsinkable. But, surely, it’s flammable…

Usually perceived as culturally advanced Germany is helping to cause another holocaust… The entire planet on fire this time… Current oxygen levels are the result of millions of years of annual production. The loss of the Amazon won’t cause oxygen levels to immediately plummet… But the Amazon produces up to 6% of the Earth’s oxygen. So, as I have said in the past, there is an oxygen threat… Indeed, acidification of the ocean from CO2 could kill the plankton… Losing 50% of world’s O2 production.

But, says, Merkler, nuclear is the scariest thing…

Next we will consider the problem of debt, where the German attitude has proven even more hypocritical, and immediately injurious, abating industry in Europe (hence counter-measures to the CO2 built-up…) Something for the G7 to mull…

Patrice Ayme

Nature Collapsing, Plutocracy Thriving

May 6, 2019

Both phenomena are related. The more nature collapses, the more plutocracy thrives (see the multi-centennial fall of Rome, for reference). Small people and other losers have no interest to see nature collapse. However, plutocracy does. Because Pluto-Kratia, Evil-Power, is best expressed and justified during war-like states, and civilizational collapse sure qualifies.

Plutocracy survived the collapse of the Roman and Carolingian empires with flying colors. In the Roman case, most noble families had a bishop in their midst. The collapse of the Renovated Empire of the Romans (Renovatio Imperii Romanorum) and its renewal by the Ottos and Capets brought the feudal order, another plutocratic success.

Now is no different: we have a terminal CO2 crisis bringing in extreme, sudden temperature, acidification and ocean rises: 1% of US CO2 is from state subsidized private jets. Nobody notices, because media have made sure to create entire generations just preoccupied by celebrities, not by what is going on, which is really most significant.

Nor has the media been keen to notice the likes of Biden annihilated the Banking Act of 1933, in the 1990s, bringing in in the age of the financial plutocracy… itself a heavy financier of fossil fuels. So all what some schools are thinking of is installing “Apps”, and plastic grass, instead of teaching sustainable global citizenship. We are cruising towards an apocalypse, at an increasing pace: the Sixth Mass Extinction. The United Nations just came up (May 6, 2019) with an analysis made by 132 countries and 455 scientists: one million species are disappearing. For example, nearly all amphibians.

https://www.cnn.com/2019/05/06/world/one-million-species-threatened-extinction-humans-scn-intl/index.html

One problem with burning forests in the tropics is that what is left are often extremely poor soils (differently from northern European soils, which are very forgiving, explaining in great part why north west Europe replaced the Greco-Roman world…) Cattle grazing on a tract of illegally cleared Amazon forest in Pará State, Brazil. In most major land habitats, the average abundance of native plant and animal life has fallen by 20 percent or more, mainly over the past century,,, [Credit
Lalo de Almeida for The New York Times]
In Africa, burned forest is often replaced by lateritis, a soil which is red, baked, hard… for the good reason that it is full of Aluminum.

It is the Sixth Mass Extinction, but this time the dinosaurs have thermonuclear weapons.

What to do? Get involved, get aware, protest. Protests can become unbearable to the powers that be.

This is the way the fascist government of Brunei on the island of Borneo was just dealt with. It drew powerful international condemnation when it rolled out its interpretation of sharia laws on April 3. Now, the Sultan of Brunei, Hassanal Bolkiah, reverted his decision: after all, the country won’t enforce Islamic laws that include stoning to death for rape, adultery and gay sex.

Killing all the people who got killed in World War Two was atrocious. However, what is now unfolding has the potential to be way way worse. Einstein said he didn’t know which weapons will be used to fight World War Three, but next it would be sticks and stones. That was naively optimistic. If we acidify further the ocean with acid from CO2, we may kill the Earth’s oxygen making mechanism. Not really news, as this was clear five years ago already:

https://patriceayme.wordpress.com/2014/05/30/global-hypoxia/  

Many behave as if there will be no tomorrow, because they feel that way! It’s a self-fulfilling prophecy, it has to be resisted.

What’s needed, beyond recording what’s going on, is interpreting it, going beyond, building ideas, and moods meant to last. Only deeper thinking can do this, and ensure a planet capable of lasting. Because we are not at the regional level anymore. When climate change, plus nefarious human impact, forced the Harappan civilization to abandon its homeland, the Indus valley, it was dealing with forces it had no idea existed. Maybe there are such forces out there. But there are also plenty of forces we can see, and which are plenty lethal enough, at civilizational scale, and the scale of the entire biosphere. Stop. And think. One million species are marching towards extinction, among the plants and animals we know.

Patrice Ayme

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From NYT:

WASHINGTON — Humans are transforming Earth’s natural landscapes so dramatically that as many as one million plant and animal species are now at risk of extinction, posing a dire threat to ecosystems that people all over the world depend on for their survival, a sweeping new United Nations assessment has concluded.

The 1,500-page report, compiled by hundreds of international experts and based on thousands of scientific studies, is the most exhaustive look yet at the decline in biodiversity across the globe and the dangers that creates for human civilization. A summary of its findings, which was approved by representatives from the United States and 131 other countries, was released Monday [May 6, 2019] in Paris. The full report is set to be published this year.

Its conclusions are stark. In most major land habitats, from the savannas of Africa to the rain forests of South America, the average abundance of native plant and animal life has fallen by 20 percent or more, mainly over the past century. With the human population passing 7 billion, activities like farming, logging, poaching, fishing and mining are altering the natural world at a rate “unprecedented in human history.”

At the same time, a new threat has emerged: Global warming has become a major driver of wildlife decline, the assessment found, by shifting or shrinking the local climates that many mammals, birds, insects, fish and plants evolved to survive in. When combined with the other ways humans are damaging the environment, climate change is now pushing a growing number of species, such as the Bengal tiger, closer to extinction.

As a result, biodiversity loss is projected to accelerate through 2050, particularly in the tropics, unless countries drastically step up their conservation efforts.

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Let Greed Save The Elephants

November 19, 2017

SAVE SPECIES With “NEOLIBERAL” Derangement ECONOMY

Only by making species economically valuable can they be saved. In the present psycho-economic order of the world. Sad, but that’s it:

Trump enabled the return of “trophies” from hunts conducted in two African countries. In some of these countries, the permit to assassinate a bull elephant can cost as much as $50,000, not far from the US yearly family income. Trump’s sons enjoy assassinating large animals, taking picture of their deed, then have some African servants obsequiously cut parts of their victims, and bring back said gory body parts to impress their friends and their plutocratic ilk, on how manly and sadistic they are.

The Politically Correct crowd has retorted with its predictably hypocritical chorus that Trump was killing the elephants. In recent years, under the obscure leadership of the hypocrite in chief, “leading” from behind, it had become fashionable to burn mountains of African elephant tusks. According to the PC crowd, that supposedly would make illicit trade in ivory less profitable.

We kill magnificent animals, thus demonstrating to us that we are magnificent people. Real men, as long as many African servants serve us in our killing rampage!

The activity of burning trophies pretends to use economics to fight illegal behavior, yet it obviously contradicts the basic law of greed doing so. Consider the “Savior of the World” painting of Leonardo da Vinci (and his students) sold for 450 million dollars. Why so dear? Because the artist plus physicist, anatomist, and close friend of Francois I made only 16 paintings: rarity confers worth. If one really wanted to lower the price of elephant tusks, to make their trade unprofitable, one should flood the market with them, not burn them. (There are innovative ways to do that, innocuous for the species, for example by half cutting wild elephants’ tusks; the same has started to be applied to rhinoceroses, by cutting their horns; the horn SHOULD then be sold, be it only to pay for the operation.)

I don’t hunt live prey (only ideas, dead or alive). I think that, as practiced with modern weapons, hunting is unfair and exhibits such an alienating and cruel relationship with the world that it is somewhat demented, considering the present circumstances, when the biosphere is dying. It’s a bit like kicking around a terminally ill patient. I have used force against dangerous animals only in self-defense, or to give them a life-saving lesson, and that involved stones, the truly time-honored weapon of the genus Homo (I have been attacked by bears more than once, but bears hate stones; giving lessons to potentially lethal snakes may sound silly, but it works, they are smart enough to flee in a timely manner, upon next encounter; those who didn’t learn fast enough, got the chop).   

Elephant numbers are sharply declining, officially due to poaching and a reduction in their territory. However, in places in Africa, to this day, children have to go to school in fear of being trampled by a wild elephant (the good news is that recently two white trophy hunters got crushed by elephants exacting revenge, and one of them slowly). Farmers, in Africa and India, rightly fear the irascible and highly intelligent pachyderms. Considering the danger and economic hardship, it is clear that elephants pay for much more than their upkeep. Selling their tusks, feet and tails is the price to pay to keep the species around.

The PC crowd, per its simple nature, may howl to the wind, reading this. Indeed, it’s unfair to have just Africans protect the megafauna, or harbor on the continent some of the greatest CO2 sinks (like primary forests, peat and muds). So why don’t we reintroduce in Europe and America wild herds of thousands of elephants. They used to be there. We may even be able to modify their genes to make them more like those who used to roam the temperate zone.

We live in the so-called “neoliberal” economic order. Said order is overstretched to areas, such as health, where it should clearly not apply (the whole idea of Obamacare was to make profitable for private insurers and wealthy “non-profits” to insure everybody). Weirdly, though, some of the PC crowd doesn’t push to apply neoliberalism where it could help people: an example is housing. Not enough decent housing is built. And the reason is not Trump and his ilk (they would be delighted to build), but the NIMBY (Not In My BackYard) syndrome.

Biodiversity won’t survive, if it’s not profitable. Same for CO2 emissions: to be abated, they have to be made unprofitable.

In a society where greed is the ultimate motivation, the so-called “neoliberal” order, survival itself has to be made profitable, in a way greedsters can see, or extinction is our future.  

Lofty sentence, but what does it mean? It means that species threatened with extinction should be made profitable. For example the Siberian tiger could be installed in vast preserve where it would be allowed to multiply, and then hunted (photographically or with paleolithic bow and arrows say, to make it glorious). For example, the Amur leopard could be introduced in the Yukon, and applied the same treatment. One could do this on a large-scale, because there used to be megafauna everywhere, and it survives in large,numbers only in pockets of Africa (and even fewer in Asia).

Actually several species of European megafauna were saved just that way, in preserves where they had been kept for the enjoyment of the plutocrats. An obvious tactic is to establish total marine reserves (no fishing whatsoever), and then allow tourist to visit them (that’s already done on a small-scale; such reserve repopulate areas where fishing is allowed, so they have proven popular with fishermen).

The COP 23, the UN climate conference, was a total failure: nothing was decided. A vague consensus arose that the planet is cruising towards a three degrees Celsius rise. Here, there and everywhere the terminal failure of what used to be called “the left”, is glaring: it’s sinking in contradictions, many of them arising from the intrinsic corrupt nature of the “representative” system. This is also true in the media. Not just the plutocratically owned media. Intrinsically, when too few have power, they exert it “unwisely”. Because what evolution knows that wisdom itself, in immoderate amounts, is unwise.

Judokas learn to use their adversary’s momentum to get them where they want them to be. With the political system we have, worldwide (it’s roughly the same everywhere), it’s important to remember this. The Trump sons are keen to show they can kill big animals. That put them in a lesser circle of hell, than those who want all large animals to disappear. Or even those who don’t mind that all large animals disappear, and only Africans can still be eaten by leopards, trampled by elephants.

Those who are concerned are often superior, morally and effectively, to those who don’t want to watch, or know. Even when their solutions look mean. Especially if their solutions look mean. This applies directly to the immigrant crisis, by the way: the PC crowd howled for decolonization, but most of what this “decolonization” did was to put the power of exploiting less developed countries in the now unrestrained hands of plutocrats.  PC has turned out to also be the abbreviation for Perfectly Cretinous, of course… And the seven million democrats in the four “blue” states of the “Blue” Wall who voted for Obama in 2012, and for Trump in 2016, giving him the presidency, figured that one out.

The case of Bernard Henri Levy (“BHL”) is the paradigm that way. BHL’s rather shallow philosophy hides well the usual Pluto tricks (government support or complicity being number one). Although physically courageous, BHL is a billionaire with a wealth not far from Trump’s, who cynically used his influence on a corrupt French leadership to get enormous amounts of money then leveraged by destroying African forests in a torrid exploitation of both Africans, their forests, and “decolonization”. All right, that has allowed him to refurbish one of the largest palaces in Morocco (once owned by US plutocrat Paul Getty).

Readers may not see the connection with the young Trumps’ penchant for assassinating noble animals. The common thread is the hypocrisy of the PC crowd: to give itself good conscience, it decries the obvious (bad Trumps assassinate animals, go around flaunting the remnants of their deeds), BHL’s philosophy stinks, but it does not try to deepen what is really going on, and, thus, how to get out of it.

Hypocrisy was initially a Greek word and concept for playing a part, pretending, from (hupo, under, and krinein, to judge, decide). Hypocrisy, in general, is the under-critique of the real, is what lays under the incapability of solving the problems which are gathering as the ultimate tsunami, in full view.

Disappearing species is one the problems. Let the PC crowd foster sharing the planet with the fauna, mega, or not. And if that means spending lots of money to kill species sustainably, it’s better than the alternative, namely, no more species.

We can’t always get what we want,

As we want.

But if we try sometimes,

We may get what we need,

Through less savory means,

Paid with pride, prejudice, lots of imagination.

To save our souls, we shouldn’t hesitate to twist our minds

When nothing else will do. 

So let the small minded cretins hunt, and boast of their malevolence, if it is is what it takes to save the biosphere.

Patrice Ayme’