Solnit contrasts the frequent use of the term violence popularly applied in mainstream media to poor people with the ongoing violence that is perpetrated by the ruling One Percent and their system of capitalism. She identifies what the ruling class engagement with climate destabilization is all about: how much violence shall we tolerate to promote our profits? Being addicted to profits, and the power associated with the accumulation of wealth, you can be dead-certain that they will continue to tolerate plenty of violence while reassuring us that everything is under control.
In every arena, we need to look at industrial-scale and systemic violence, not just the hands-on violence of the less powerful. When it comes to climate change, this is particularly true. Exxon has decided to bet that we can’t make the corporation keep its reserves in the ground, and the company is reassuring its investors that it will continue to profit off the rapid, violent and intentional destruction of the Earth.