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

Monday, November 18, 2013

Corporate power blocks global energy transition

Click here to access a summary of a document from Friends of the Earth International via Climate & Capitalism for distribution at the UN climate talks in Warsaw.  

Like so many liberal critiques of corporate power in relation to global warming, this piece totally ignores the 800 pound gorilla in the room--the economic system that corporations inhabit. Thus, it distracts from the mandatory solution to the climate crisis: the elimination of the system of capitalism from the Earth. 

Capitalism is a cancer that is slowly consuming the healthy body of the planet. Tinkering with its dynamics only wastes time and energy that we could be using to excise this cancer and save the body. By arguing that "corporate power blocks global energy transition" is like arguing that traffic congestion is caused by too many vehicles for the roads, and therefore the solution is to build more roads and lanes. Here in the Seattle area congestion has become such a big problem that highway construction can't keep up with the number of cars. They are now boring tunnels under the city. Our local ruling class still cannot bear to think of a different kind of system designed to move people around.

Like all cultural elements in class structured societies since their origins about 10,000 years ago (about 2% of human existence), the automobile fetish has been created to serve the interests of the ruling capitalist class. These fossil fuel driven vehicles designed only for individuals and their families are enormously profitable.