how the earth changed history
friday night (2012-12-14), professor iain stewart looked at how we humans have transformed the planet in how the earth changed history, which begs the question: now that we’ve transformed it, what’s next? altho stewart mentions human-caused climate change, he suggests we possess the technology to combat it, but do we possess the required energy? oil is our main source of energy and the basis of most human systems, like food, heating, and transportation. some say we’re past the peak and it’s only get harder and more costly to extract; others say there’s plenty left. stewart doesn’t say. he only says this is a test, this is our time. ok, fair enough. the future is unknown. but if there’s plenty of oil left, why do things get more costly, why do we pollute more water, and why are we heating up the atmosphere?
mike nickerson writes, ‘Cyclemas is the season during which the days decline to their minimum and then turn around and start getting longer again. This pattern is similar to the decline of civilization, due to our pressing against planetary limits, and its eventual turn around toward a new prosperity based on living within those limits. The first step is to realize that there is a positive future that we can create. Sharing the notion of Cyclemas is one way to accelerate the transformation. It may be years yet, before our political structures recognize that the human family has now grown up and that it is no longer possible (let alone desirable) to continue with the goal of Growth everlasting. The alternative, however is being clearly expressed and demonstrated by more and more people. Each person who realizes that there is a positive alternative moves us closer to the necessary shift in society’s goals.’
mike nickerson quotes john ralston saul: ‘The marketplace has been constantly evoked over the last quarter-century as the source of freedom and democracy as well as the only possible force to lead us back to growth. But after two decades of having their way, the exponents of this theory have no results to show us. . . . they have held and continue to hold the levers of power, and they have not produced. This is a very long trial period.’ photo by Kate Szatmari.