We’ve lived so long under the spell of hierarchy—from god-kings to feudal lords to party bosses—that only recently have we awakened to see not only that “regular” citizens have the capacity for self-governance, but that without their engagement our huge global crises cannot be addressed. The changes needed for human society simply to survive, let alone thrive, are so profound that the only way we will move toward them is if we ourselves, regular citizens, feel meaningful ownership of solutions through direct engagement. Our problems are too big, interrelated, and pervasive to yield to directives from on high.
—Frances Moore Lappé, excerpt from Time for Progressives to Grow Up

Tuesday, May 3, 2016

Arctic sea ice is falling off a cliff and it may not survive the summer

Click here to access article from Robertscribbler.
...during the first decade of the the 21st Century the mainstream scientific view was that Arctic sea ice would be about in the range that it is today by around 2070 or 2080. And that we wouldn’t be contemplating the possibility of zero or near zero sea ice until the end of this Century.

But the amazing ability of an unconscionable fossil fuel emission to rapidly transform our world for the worst appears now to outweigh that cautious science.
We in the northwest of the United States no longer need to read scientific sources to know that climate change destabilization is real. We've experienced record breaking temperatures nearly every week for the past month. Some records were smashed by as much as 10 degrees Fahrenheit. It is now clear that positive feedback loops are in operation to accelerate the climate temperatures upward. Have we reached the point of no return or tipping point of this destabilization? There is no scientific consensus on this frightening question, but the evidence keeps mounting in support of this position.

For an excellent video discussion of this prospect, I recommend that you view a 43:57m video that was posted on National Geographic's website in November 2015. The video is structured around the five stages of grief, but I notice that in the final stage of acceptance the "patient", Bill Nye, starts engaging in hopeful scientific fantasies which I believe brings him back to stage one.

Of course nowhere in the presentation is any mention made of capitalism that is driving climate destabilization. The closest they come is some brief recognition that the fossil fuel industry will oppose any significant measures to construct indispensable new power and transportation infrastructures simply because they would require tremendous costs. The video actually charges science with the cause of climate destabilization, not the sacred cow of capitalism.

Another fantasy I have noticed is that some people imagine moving to other planets after they trash this one. Read this piece entitled "Scientists discover potentially habitable planets" in which they speculate that another planet may be habitable and it is "only" a little more than 40 light years away! Well, if we could travel at the speed of light (roughly about 186,000 miles per second) for 40 years, we could shove this planet in the dumpster and migrate to that planet.

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