Map of life expectancy at birth from Global Education Project.

Sunday, December 20, 2015

The River in Egypt

Reading this piece by Elizabeth Kolbert on the coming innundation of much of Florida, specifically focusing on the imminent uninhabitabity of Miami Beach, I found myself profoundly baffled.

The governor of the state and one of its senators, along with the entirety of their political party, maintain that this is not happening, and that the claim it is happening is not just a mistake, but a deliberate hoax by thousands of scientists and allied politicians who are conspiring to rob us of our freedom because of some reason they don't quite get to specifying.

Presumably the politicians who say this know it is completely insane. I don't know about James Inhofe, he is an idiot who might actually believe it, but the delusion cannot possibly be widespread. Rick Scott and Marco Rubio are liars. And what are they planning to say when all of that very expensive real estate disappears? I mean, this isn't happening fifty years from now, after they are dead. It is happening today.

I really do not get it.


Anonymous said...

That was an amazing article, I had no idea.

Thing is ‘Capitalism’ (let’s call it for short profit-seeking via money exchange by individuals or small, or larger but organised, soldered, and rapacious groups, which can include the State itself) acts thru the extraction of ressources (various) and exploitation (e.g. labor, customers..), and is thus very short-termist and blind to larger consequence(s). That is just the system, which is also built on the idea that problems that arise can be handled by applying the same template. Collective action for the good of all is simply inconceivable as it is in contradiction to exploitation.

Note that Marx himself treated the environment pretty much like a ‘back-drop’ on which stage humans deployed their class struggles and activities. Overall, the crux is not ‘different economic models’ - communist vs. whatever (the USSR managed its leap forward thru collectivization, re-grouping, stiff management, as it was the only way, and its envrionmental policies were notoriously bad) but something deeper. Of course there is the whole thing of Man Triumphs Nature but that isn’t very interesting imho.


Cervantes said...

Well, it will be interesting to see what turns up as your glaciers melt, anyway.

Shop 99 said...
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Anonymous said...

Ha ha C. Some of the glaciers melt so fast you can stand and watch and see it with your own eyes. Amazing.

The greater worry - in the sense of rapid, vs. long term, catastrophic effects - is that when the permafrost starts to unglue, I mean melt, lose its icy grip, huge swathes of the moutains may suddenly be released and cause an avalanche of rocks. There have already been disasters of this kind, but potentially some mountain tops could just 'break off' (say, to exagerate.)