NASA: Civilization headed for collapse

  • metta

    Posts: 44461

    Mar 18, 2014 1:21 AM GMT
    NASA: Civilization headed for collapse
  • metta

    Posts: 44461

    Mar 18, 2014 2:20 AM GMT
    Our doom will come sci-fi-style, NASA-funded study says

    Uh-oh. The "1 Percent" might just lead to the complete collapse of civilization, according to a study sponsored by NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center. But all hope is not lost.
  • MikeW

    Posts: 6082

    Mar 18, 2014 5:07 PM GMT
    metta8 saidNASA: Civilization headed for collapse

    Quoting from the linked article:
    Once more for some of us this is not news, but it it is but one more case of seeing the obvious. That such a study can come from the very science that is largely behind the anticipated collapse is somewhat reassuring.

    More important is thew ray of hope the model suggests:

    The two key solutions are to reduce economic inequality so as to ensure fairer distribution of resources, and to dramatically reduce resource consumption by relying on less intensive renewable resources and reducing population growth:

    "Collapse can be avoided and population can reach equilibrium if the per capita rate of depletion of nature is reduced to a sustainable level, and if resources are distributed in a reasonably equitable fashion."

    Nice to know that there is a solution. Simple it is not. The missing part here is how to get it done and in time.

    What is infuriating is that these prognostications are, indeed, NOT NEWS. Anyone paying attention in the early 1970s (almost half a century ago, now) was hearing precisely these same criticisms of Civilization's trends. Following the lead of such great thinkers as Gregory Bateson, who pointed out that, "The major problems in the world are the result in the difference between how nature works and how people think," some of us began to ask serious questions. At a certain point it becomes obvious that a an unlimited growth economy based upon finite material resources and energy is, at some point, bound to fail, and likely in a catastrophic way. In 1971, Bateson said:
    If I am right, the whole of our thinking about what we are and what other people are has got to be restructured. This is not funny, and I do not know how long we have to do it in. If we continue to operate on the premises that were fashionable in the prescybernetic era, and which were especially underlined and strengthened during the Industrial Revolution, which seemed to validate the Darwinian unit of survival, we may have twenty or thirty years before the logical reductio ad absurdum of our old positions destroy us. Nobody knows how long we have, under the present system, before some disaster strikes us, more serious than the destruction of any group of nations.

    Bateson: Form, Substance and Difference.

    The point being, "we" (those of us who pay attention) have known this for a generation. Most certainly "those who pay attention" also include the 1%. So none of this comes as a surprise to them. Quite the contrary. They've understood for quite some time that "renewable energy" resources are a direct threat to their hegemony and power precisely because renewable energy resources are inherently anti-hierarchical, making both energy and power available to just about everyone. They don't want THAT! For a generation they have actively fought against it and done everything they can to try and find some way of making the DEMAND for clean, renewable energy resources something they, and they alone, can produce and control.

    Bateson also said:
    We are most of us governed by epistemologies that we know to be wrong.

    But the myth of power is, of course, a very powerful myth, and probably most people in this world more or less believe in it. It is a myth, which, if everybody believes in it, becomes to that extent self-validating. But it is still epistemological lunacy and leads inevitably to various sorts of disaster.

    What is true is that the idea of power corrupts. Power corrupts most rapidly those who believe in it, and it is they who will want it most. Obviously, our democratic system tends to give power to those who hunger for it and gives every opportunity to those who don’t want power to avoid getting it. Not a very satisfactory arrangement if power corrupts those who believe in it and want it.
  • Svnw688

    Posts: 3350

    Mar 18, 2014 5:28 PM GMT
    I'm all for a more equitable distribution of resources, but I fail to see how this will prevent collapse.

    Also, a flaw of the study is that it looks at the "collapse" of everyone on an average scale, while failing to distinguish that SOME nations might collapse (like the Soviet Union) while SOME nations might thrive.

    I'm not buying this. It has a noble end, but the math doesn't add up.
  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Mar 18, 2014 6:01 PM GMT
    NASA should stick to what it did best, send people and objects into space, and stop being used so obviously as a political tool by imbeciles !
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    Mar 19, 2014 12:31 PM GMT
    MuchMoreThanMuscle saidReducing population growth........

    Yes, please please PLEASE!

    Are you willing to put your money where your mouth is and be the first to reduce the earths population by one, or are you just another hypocrite mouthing the politically correct bullshit being spoon fed to you by your "betters" ?