Category Archives: Apocalypse

What to believe, Oh, what to Believe?

[thoughts from   ~burning woman~  ]

What to believe, oh, what to believe!? On one side sits my common sense and years of dedicated observation of man on this world. On that side, I smile, even laugh – but in hiding: it wouldn’t do to upset the believers in their fearfully self-righteous anger.

On the other side is the herd, man himself, with his accumulated force combined into a patriarchal civilization that has taken over everything and used it’s overwhelming power to rape, plunder and kill at will while running amok disgorging unsustainable numbers.

Now comes a crossroads, whether real or fake, and “man” the forceful (bad) predator, rapist and mass murderer demonstrates his innate fear of unknowns and his disgusting cowardliness in the face of an arisen “power” he does not know how to conquer and exploit.

A virus: imagine that! Something he can’t rape or plunder; something only the few know how to profit from.

How did this thing come about? Ah well, one could listen to man’s endless or contradictory explanations but they are just more excuses to hide superstitious ignorance and exposing the fact that “the great conqueror of nature” never did “conquer” his raped and tortured world; the fact that this world’s nature only went deeper underground to mutate and hide its lethal come-backs.

Are these “come-backs” surfacing in brute anger now? No, not yet, not yet. Earth’s revenge is a dish she does intend to savour cold and it’s not near cold enough yet. This is but a small test of one of nature’s many and deadlier weapons of mass destruction.

I am not concerned about this virus fear-demic. The programmed fear is just one more of man’s (read: Matrix) invented means to create chaos and additional control for the powerful over the less so, the proverbial storm in the teacup. There will be deaths during this period of panic, but it is already so obvious that most of those deaths ascribed to the “new and improved” virus primarily result from pre-existing pathologies. Ascribing these to a corona virus to create a global pandemic is a political gambit with serious long term goals.

Of course that is not what the hoi polloi want to hear. They have invested belief, feelings and tsunamis of emotions in this folly and they won’t be easily robbed of their new game. Suddenly they have become mindful of their corrupt, lying leadership. Suddenly they need to believe, even in blatant institutional lies. Suddenly the media’s non-stop talking heads are spewing the very wisdom of the gods. Suddenly we are existing under a new law called “The Six Foot Rule” or “The Two Meter Rule” (but not to worry, the virus knows both standard and metric systems.)  

There is something afoot the sheeple do not understand because they have no imagination, no personal power and no self-respect. They do not trust their own intuition or understanding, having sold that to the “group” – whatever the “group” be called – a long time ago when they chose their fantastic civilization over the rules of nature.

Suddenly they are faced with an instrument of comeuppance they know enough to fear but not enough to understand. Now they must turn to their “gods,” the promoters of civilization, for protection from the deadly monster. Suddenly they need to believe to survive the crisis of the moment, waiting for the morning when the great leadership declares business as usual.

Then the sheep will stop looking up, bleat a sigh of relief, drop their masks, gloves and “social distancing” and some of their newly-manufactured fears (but not all of them, the needed quota will remain). They will stop some of their war against each other and begin the rebuilding of the castles for their lords and masters. They will return to their happy fornicating and mindless defecating on the face of the planet.

Isn’t that how it’s always been in the world of civilizations?

On that glorious morning however this civilization will have taken one giant step closer to its final demise.  

Oh, and in case you are interested, there is one natural weapon of mass destruction that your civilization knows about. It’s even mentioned in some rule books of scientific magic. It’s called entropy. That’s the four horses of the Apocalypse riding over the face of civilization as one. On the final day of that ride, as the book says, people will hide in caves. They will crawl under rocks and cry to be covered over but nothing learned or known will avail. Nature will have the very last word… on that day. 

 

 

Everybody Knows…

[some timely thoughts by  ~burning woman~ ]

Yesterday I had to go out “in the public” – sort of – on a job, and today I found some time to slip away and do some shopping. What I saw these last two days staggered my imagination, enough to make me “righteously” angry. I saw the programmed sheeple at their best, lining up at banks and stores, waiting patiently or walking silently between half-empty or blocked off shelves tossing frightened or angry looks when another violated the “6 foot rule” and got too close. Some had masks and gloves. Few smiles, just confused expressions as they contemplated the manufactured shortages and forced themselves to believe and trust. Surely, this is all legitimate. Surely there is a virus out there devastating the planet and killing thousands, soon to be millions, then billions. Surely one must obey the masters for do they not always know best? And who’s to question them? If we do not obey, will they not shut down even more, and will we not all die, if not of “the virus” then of starvation?

The story was being told in strange encounters. My particular clients yesterday are elderly (I’m 73 but I guess I don’t qualify since I am not playing the game by the new rules) and they have “compromised immune systems.” They couldn’t pay me in cash, so they had to place a cheque (yes, that is the proper spelling) on a chair outside for me to pick up, but only after they properly retreated back into their house, with their masks and gloves.

Signs everywhere announcing shut downs of various businesses. Restaurants only doing deliveries. Most government offices shut down, people working “from home”. Schools closed apparently until next Fall. I wondered if they’d shut down the wars?

So I listened to my anger and it told me things I am really not supposed to think. Why? That is always the first question and if followed through it explains much. What are the elites hoping to accomplish with this manufactured pandemic? I could immediately think of a few things. Take China, why not, we’re told it started there… their bubble economy was in shambles and ready to blow sky high bringing the rest of the global market place down with it. It needed stopping without exposing the lie and the massive corruption that is the viral capitalist system. Hide one man-made virus, predatory capitalism, with another! Another test: can the money system finally eliminate all cash transactions? Use the virus to scare the sheeple into going on-line or e-transfer; get them trained, then tell them cash is no longer available: too dangerous to health. Of course this means greater control by the banking mafia. Want another? Why not use the virus to begin the serious elimination of all no longer wanted nor needed older folk? Get rid of pensioners for one. Then kill off other undesirables, those that require health care but can’t pay for it and want “the government” to seriously go into the health care business and control Big Pharma and the entire medical malpractice world – get rid of the sick before serious profits are lost and keep the pressure on to hide the massive corruption threatening to destroy civilization in one fell swoop.

Meanwhile to sheeple are, as usual, returning to their blind faith. Believe those in charge, maybe even go back to believing in god. Believe the virus is deadly and can only be controlled by following mandated guidelines. Invest a maximum amount of emotion and fear in the process. Worry, worry, worry, about grandma and grandpa (or great grandma and great grandpa) and although they are already “compromised” and “sick” – if they die, believe it is because of the virus. Blame the virus, and blame whatever animal is supposed to suddenly, for no reason, have spewed it out upon innocent unsuspecting humans. Blaming always accompanies blind faith.

There are other thoughts going around in my mind about this massive scam job but I’m letting it go. It’s “your” story, not mine and I’ve decided not to spoil your fun and faith in a fabulous fantasy. If you cannot, or will not, realize that only a tiny minority of deaths are not caused by pre-existing conditions; if you do not or will not realize that “they” are blaming generic deaths from chronic conditions accompanying old age, heart conditions, over-drugging, collapsing lungs or whatever else (car crashes maybe next?) on this “virus” then go ahead, enjoy the emotional ride. While you’re at it, remember there’s a comet out there too  and comets have been known to be harbingers of “terrible” things. So let’s add that to the list while we’re at it. Maybe the comet caused the virus. More blame.

Yesterday I kind of blew up at my “boss” as she went on about the virus and I said, “There isn’t any f*****g virus! It’s a scam of such mega proportion that it’s impossible for the sheeple to even try to think. Exercise faith, obey, fear, take expensive precautions, and hope. Meanwhile this game is giving billions of quietly desperate lives something to “do” giving those lives a semblance of meaning. Suddenly the commuting, assembly line working, shopping, playing and praying system-slave discovers excitement outside the bland ordinary. A new game, and the rules aren’t all set yet: does it get better?

Remember this song?

Everybody Knows – Leonard Cohen

Everybody knows that the dice are loaded
Everybody rolls with their fingers crossed
Everybody knows that the war is over
Everybody knows the good guys lost
Everybody knows the fight was fixed
The poor stay poor, the rich get rich
That’s how it goes
Everybody knows
Everybody knows that the boat is leaking
Everybody knows that the captain lied
Everybody got this broken feeling
Like their father or their dog just died

That’s the gist of it, but of course that is not how it goes: how it goes is, nobody knows because nobody wants to know.  What everybody does know however is that if the virus “grows” it will be my fault for not playing by the establishment rules. For not being “vaxxed”; for not getting medicated; for not doing the doctor check up; for not BELIEVING. That’s my crime: I’m an unbeliever. The proof is undeniable: I don’t get sick and I don’t carry around or feed a compromised immune system. So watch for the comet then put up the stake in the public square. Burn some unbelievers and the virus will die off.  It’s always worked in the past. 

 

We Improve but we do not Progress

[an essay by   ~burning woman~  ]

Time, or the lack thereof, has become my enemy. Of course I realize that from the larger picture, time is not relevant, but I also realize that as a physical entity possessed of an Earthian body, I have to reckon with the time constraint, a real pain! I exist in a mental cage, a Matrix-designed prison in which no “greater thought” is meant to exist. Time, or what Earthians like to call past-present-future, controls thought, awareness, expectations. Nothing here is expected to exist outside of time – that would be unthinkable. Think, how important have time-measuring devices been throughout man’s various attempts at defining itself through his so-called “civilizations.”

It is possible, however, for some of us to push our mental awareness through the bars of the time jail and see from infinity. It’s a bit like traveling several magnitude beyond the speed of light (time and light being artificially tied together in the Matrix) and feeling the mind stretch as she pushes out into the past in order to see the future she is going into – not, as is popularly believed, creating. I do not create the future (there is no such thing as “my” future – not yet!) but it is possible for me to see it take shape if I make the effort to “see” and understand some of the past, that which I have already experienced, forgot about and now must learn to recover in order to make use of.

The real past does not exist within the artificial boundaries imposed by an equally artificial time machine. It certainly does not exist in any “historical” recording, those being even less meaningful in terms of understanding what a human being was/will be. Only a recovered once-traveled and experienced past can have meaning.

I used to be fascinated by history, my favourite subject in high school and I kept on reading and studying history long after I escaped the academic world. Then I came to certain realizations about reality, what it is, what it isn’t. Man’s recorded history became about as valid as using Monopoly money to purchase goods and services: there was a credibility gap that could not be breached. Man’s history, the collectively remembered and the recorded, was not so much a lie as pointless. Pointless as an exercise in recording it, even more so in reading it.

How did I arrive at that? Simple: nothing, absolutely nothing, is learned from history and nothing is gained by having some knowledge of it. It is irrelevant. What is relevant is what I can personally “remember” of what I experienced of past events, how those changed me and re-made me and how, as I collected that awareness, it opened the only trustworthy and meaningful window on a future that my remembrances gave me to look out of.

This will be the third time that I have read Stephen Donaldson’s science fiction “Gap” series. The title of this “essay” is taken from book 4, Chaos and Order: the Gap into Madness. “We improve, but we do not progress.” I imagine that for a programmed entity, such a thought is, well, unthinkable. How could we not progress if we are improving?

The question is, what do we mean by improving, or do we even have a clue what it could mean? What does it mean, for an intelligent, sentient, self-aware being, to “improve”? Does it mean that as a society, better put as a civilization, we are palpably, noticeably improving, in keeping with our claim to be living on a human scale? Does it mean we are improving in terms of developing “new and improved” human values, as individuals?

Yes, technologically we are undeniably improving. Many of the things we surround ourselves with today and take for granted would have been unthinkable just a few years ago.

But aren’t we existing as characters in a series of Marvel Comic books? Aren’t we in fact using Monopoly money to go shopping in our improved world? How meaningful to us as human being are any of our improvements? What are these improvements doing to us? Are they not stealing our minds and locking us in our “now” mental jail?

What is progress? What would it mean to progress? Wouldn’t progress mean becoming better people overall? More aware of our environment, of others? More eager to ensure that as we “improve” we are adding to the overall betterment of this world and all who live and exist on and within, it? Wouldn’t progress mean that we are breaking free of our killing rat race and our insane repetition of acts we time and again performed then swore we would never do again? Wouldn’t progress mean we strove to become more human by demonstrating our desire to display the quality of humaneness towards all life?

I will tell you, once again, what my window into the future is showing me. Think of the current baby pandemic called Covid 19, make it real and multiply that a million times. I see horror upon horror building up exponentially until the entire world is awash in desperation, violence, bloodshed and a total loss of humanity or humane expression. I see the utter end of this civilization and everything that made it possible – people and systems.

But then, at the end of all improvement, I see progress. A new beginning, none of it predicated on the old. I can see this future because I can see the past beyond historical/hysterical fake news and beyond collective memories.

The Self-Destruct Button

          [thoughts in the night, by Sha’Tara]

Oh hell! I  cried out loud to no one, in my small basement apartment and long after darkness had fallen accompanied by persistent clouds that dutifully hid moon and stars.

At least the orangy street lamp is working, casting a pale glow upon wet pavement and small pools. It’s the normal for this place, at this time of year – but it’s not what made me cry out.

What did make me cry out? A feeling, or a series of feelings feeding upon each other.

What sort of feeling/feelings? The sort you’re not supposed to have. The ones that want to probe the darkness and expose its lurid underbelly. The ones not politically correct. The ones that, upon reeling themselves back into the mind say, ah, screw it – everything is going to hell and none of it is fixable.

Let me explain myself to myself, and you can listen in. There is no philosophy grand enough to turn a people away from their fixation with the auto-destruct button once pointed in that direction, and let me tell you this: man’s current leadership has mastered the art of pointing: it’s called propaganda, only people call it news.

People are running, laughing, screaming, cursing, waving flags, cheering and booing their corrupt, psychopathic, perverted, misogynist, racist, elitist presidential and prime ministerial fodder to their destruction. They’re ready to maul and kill anyone who would stand in the way of their choice and they will most certainly destroy their living environment just to get to mash that shiny red button clearly marked “Self Destruct.”   

I took a break, it lasted a wee bit longer than anticipated, twenty four hours, in fact, but you never know with breaks, and now it’s over.

My feelings aren’t quite as raw as last night’s but I have no trouble getting them back. The world I’ve become aware of guarantees that.

 They say, and it’s a truism, that we are born to die. I’ve always been aware of that, the one thing we know for sure isn’t fake news. Our body gives us so many years to play at being alive then it conks out, or peters out…

 Thing is, unless we’re suicidal we don’t have much control over the “when” of death. That means I can’t just decide, today, to call it quits, to say ‘enough is enough’ and walk away. I mean I could, it’s called losing interest in everything, but I don’t think I’m made that way. The awake mind is a curious thing, a questing thing, the puzzle solver, the riddle master. For every answer it will throw up a dozen more questions and the rabbit hole only gets deeper.  

 To the question then, why are people in general so eager to test the apocalypse switch? Why the general group think to end it all? Just to see the fireworks? Or, as some claim, is it that at the heart of every Earthian is the false hope, belief, or faith, that it only happens to the other and “I” will remain alive to watch the horror show from the comfort of my Lazy-boy chair or leaning on the railing of the patio of my friend’s 8th floor apartment?

 “Faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.” Could it be that the vast majority of Earthians,  believers or not, actually ascribe to this patently false biblical claim? Could this false reality exist as a necessary part of the programming?

I – Don’t – Know! I don’t have an answer to that one.

 But that takes me back to my desire to scream. Personally, I don’t want to see, or experience, any sort of apocalypse. It’s a truly dumb idea. Do you want to participate in one? Do you believe the fairy tale that “you” can survive it? If you did, what would be the point? Alone on a devastated world, what sort of end could you imagine for yourself in the aftermath? Or are you of those benighted who believe some god is going to see to it personally that you are spared the gruesome aspects and install you on your own private cloud space to watch the horror show and “REJOICE!” even at the bloodbath put on for your own entertainment?

          I believe we, as relatively intelligent creatures, can not only switch from apocalyptic thinking but change the world to become an unrecognizable reality: literally a paradise. People who think like this are usually called naïve, utopians, dreamers. Again, the group think is, “can’t happen so forget it.”  The same individuals who believe in survival also believe an apocalypse is inevitable and often do all in their power to bring it about. 

What does that say about that sort of thinking? What do you call someone desperate to survive, to live as long as physically possible, yet nurturing apocalyptic thinking, of total decimation of a world? Doublethink or cognitive dissonance? Either way, not logical.

Could we have a utopia on Earth? Of course. Not only that but bringing about a utopia is a much easier task than bringing about an apocalypse. Apocalypses are costly, complex, messy, bloody and ultimately pointless affairs. All a utopia needs is for individuals, of their own free will, to become compassionate then let compassion demonstrate the way out of all the violence, the greed, the lust, the infamy, the corruption, the innate selfishness that are now growing together like dark storm clouds to pave the way for the apocalypse, for the end.

It’s simple enough, too simple maybe. 

and… PS, not a great piece of writing but food for thought, perhaps? 

         

         

What Price the Life of One Earthian Baby?

“If you do not specify and confront real issues, what you say will surely obscure them. If you do not alarm anyone morally, you yourself remain morally asleep. If you do not embody controversy, what you say will be an acceptance of the drift of the coming human hell.” – C. WRIGHT MILLS (1916-1962) American sociologist

In real dollars, how much is an Earthian baby’s life worth?

I was going to post just that question and see what sort of response, if any, it generated.

But I need to fill in some blanks.  The question has haunted me for long and tiresome decades. I know that the killing of an Earthian child is worth a lot of money. I also know, based on the several million deaths of children and their supporters in this century’s endless wars alone, that “the world” or let’s call it “civilization” is totally OK with that particular aspect of the slaughterhouse business of war.

Not convinced? Where are the peace activists? Where are the anti-war protesters? Where is the kind of in-your-face war news as finally helped expose the blatant, pointless, genocidal war in Vietnam? Better yet, where are you?

Has war become such a normal venture that it no longer raises any questions of morality or justice? Has it become just another video game?

So let me, once again, use this post as a vehicle to ask, why isn’t every Earthian changing their murderous patriarchal belief systems in favour of compassion? What’s wrong with choosing to be a compassionate person? What’s wrong with turning against a social system that promotes the murder of even ONE INNOCENT AND HELPLESS CHILD FOR MONETARY PROFIT?

I’m personally disgusted with this Earthian race. It doesn’t have to engage any of the social evils it currently accepts as the price of doing business. If it comes to knowing right from wrong, well, excuse me, but what are all those books for? Why have an official education system if it can’ teach the most basic requirements for admittance to the human race? Why have a written history if it’s to be endlessly mocked and misused?

The “Teachers” warned me against this people’s ways. They explained, in detail, that Earthians were pseudo-humans and most likely to fail as an experiment in higher consciousness. I had difficulty with their insistence at first but no longer. I see it now. I see how people, ordinary people who probably think of themselves as normal, mostly right, mostly OK people, are comfortably in bed with the System and quite willing to aid, abet, protect and even fight for it, and comfortable with the death of that baby as de facto necessary so the numbers can keep on rising; so the rich lords and masters keep getting richer; so the war mongers can keep on winning their election bids.

I see the fall of man in all of this. I see nothing being done that can change the disastrous course that the vast silent, ignorant and irresponsible global majority has WILLINGLY CHOSEN to take.

Sure, you can vote ‘til the cows come home and I guarantee this: you will only see things get worse.

Why? Because you condone the sacrificial killing of one innocent baby.

That is an unforgivable crime.

You would not forgive a pedophile for doing it. You would not forgive a drunk driver for doing it. You would not forgive a mass murderer for doing it. You would not forgive any one individual for doing it, even if he, or she, was given a state permit for doing it

So why should “you” who constantly and knowingly participate in the premeditated murder of one innocent child; you who is willing to pour trillions of tax dollars into weapons of mass murder of innocent children, expect forgiveness?

There will be none.

How does that saying go? “The axe is already at the root of the tree.”

Crazy post, yeah, but however it is shaken, I’m not the one who is insane for writing it. I would post it even if I knew every “follower” was going to unsubscribe. I’m tired of Earth.

 

Man’s Last War

 – a poem by Sha’Tara

The world hasn’t changed much
Since so long ago I was born, when I happened
For no reason it would seem, without hubris.
I learned to talk, walk, listen and observe
With the sense it all had to mean something
In the end.

The world was cruel to me when I was young
Though I didn’t know that then, it’s what is
To a child life is the norm, the form.
There was much hardship, harshness
Little tenderness, and it seemed dangerous.
One could get used to tenderness
And the world I knew hated it with passion
unchecked.

Life is cruel they said without apology,
Why not, they’d just survived a world war
Knowing naught but blood and losses.
I thought, yes, I have to be bold, and tough,
I too must survive, there’ll be another war
And I must know how to fight it; must know
My enemy before he knows that I know
I will beat him.

No, the world hasn’t changed, not at all.
The same people lie, cheat, rob and rule,
The same people suffer and die, their blood
Lubricates the scythe blindly sweeping
To leave fodder and dying stubble in its wake
To be ploughed.

Yet something did change, has changed:
A new World War is being fought
No longer man against man but once again
Man against nature-she fighting her protracted way
She can never lose. Man in his hubris
Still believes he can win this war and it will be
As he never, ever, won any of his other wars.
Earth withdraws her bounty.

Man’s motto remains against, never with
Rashly, brashly he spreads his nets,
His barb wire, his jet trails, his towers,
His stacks, his chimneys, his warehouses
His poisons, his noise, his armaments and bombs,
All to be measured in corporate profits for
The rich to get richer.

Civilization teeters on the brink of extinction,
The skies are deeply troubled, changing colours,
Glaciers melt, calve, fires burn, smoke rises:
Death, death, death! Booms and cackles
The Lord of Greed, the God of man, terminator
Soulless and heartless

The last man stands on his funeral pyre
Proudly made of planet Earth’s skin
Sure he’d won his very last war against life.
*********
He raises his fist to the soured heavens,
Claiming his last divine imperative thinking
I have destroyed the environment, I have killed
All that sustained life. I leave my boot print
On a weak, worthless and dying world, hah!
“I Am become Death, the Destroyer of Earth,
I will be remembered, halleluiah!”

Embarrassment of Riches-George Monbiot

When it comes to being a voice for our stressed and possibly dying natural environment, George Monbiot’s has no equal.

Please read on. (Hopefully all the links are working as this is a copy, not a reblog. They do work at this end, I checked.)

______________________________________________________

Embarrassment of Riches – monbiot.com

Embarrassment of Riches

Posted: 20 Sep 2019 01:22 AM PDT

For the sake of life on Earth, we should set an upper limit on the money any person can amass. (My emphasis)

By George Monbiot, published in the Guardian, 19th September 2019

It is not quite true that behind every great fortune lies a great crime. Musicians and novelists, for example, can become extremely rich by giving other people pleasure. But it does appear to be universally true that in front of every great fortune lies a great crime. Immense wealth translates automatically into immense environmental impacts, regardless of the intentions of those who possess it. The very wealthy, almost as a matter of definition, are committing ecocide.

A few weeks ago, I received a letter from a worker at a British private airport. “I see things that really shouldn’t be happening in 2019,” he wrote. Every day he sees Global 7000 jets, Gulfstream 650s and even Boeing 737s take off from the airport carrying a single passenger, mostly flying to Russia and the US. The private Boeing 737s, built to take 174 seats, are filled at the airport with around 32,000 litres of fuel. That’s as much fossil energy as a small African town might use in a year.

Where are these single passengers going? Perhaps to visit one of their superhomes, constructed and run at vast environmental cost, or to take a trip on their superyacht, which might burn 500 litres of diesel per hour just ticking over, and is built and furnished with rare materials, extracted at the expense of stunning places.

Perhaps we shouldn’t be surprised to learn that when Google convened a meeting of the rich and famous at the Verdura resort in Sicily this July to discuss climate breakdown, its delegates arrived in 114 private jets and a fleet of megayachts, and drove around the island in supercars. Even when they mean well, the ultrarich cannot help trashing the living world.

A series of research papers shows that income is by far the most important determinant of environmental impact. It doesn’t matter how green you think you are. If you have surplus money, you spend it. The only form of consumption that’s clearly and positively correlated with good environmental intentions is diet: people who see themselves as green tend to eat less meat and more organic vegetables. But attitudes have little bearing on the amount of transport fuel, home energy and other materials you consume. Money conquers all.

The disastrous effects of spending power are compounded by the psychological impacts of being wealthy. Plenty of studies show that the richer you are, the less you are able to connect with other people. Wealth suppresses empathy. One paper reveals that drivers in expensive cars are less likely to stop for people using pedestrian crossings than drivers in cheap cars. Another revealed that rich people were less able than poorer people to feel compassion towards children with cancer. Though they are disproportionately responsible for our environmental crises, the rich will be hurt least and last by planetary disaster, while the poor are hurt first and worst. The richer people are, the research suggests, the less such knowledge is likely to trouble them.

Another issue is that wealth limits the perspectives of even the best-intentioned people. This week Bill Gates argued in an interview with the Financial Times that divesting (ditching stocks) from fossil fuels is a waste of time. It would be better, he claimed, to pour money into disruptive new technologies with lower emissions. Of course we need new technologies. But he has missed the crucial point: in seeking to prevent climate breakdown, what counts is not what you do but what you stop doing. It doesn’t matter how many solar panels you install if you don’t simultaneously shut down coal and gas burners. Unless existing fossil fuel plants are retired before the end of their lives, and all exploration and development of new fossil fuels reserves is cancelled, there is little chance of preventing more than 1.5°C of global heating.

But this requires structural change, which involves political intervention as well as technological innovation: anathema to Silicon Valley billionaires. It demands an acknowledgement that money is not a magic wand that makes all the bad stuff go away.

On Friday, I’ll be joining the global climate strike, in which adults will stand with the young people whose call to action has resonated around the world. As a freelancer, I’ve been wondering who I’m striking against. Myself? Yes: one aspect of myself, at least. Perhaps the most radical thing we can now do is to limit our material aspirations. The assumption on which governments and economists operate is that everyone strives to maximise their wealth. If we succeed in this task, we inevitably demolish our life support systems. Were the poor to live like the rich, and the rich to live like the oligarchs, we would destroy everything. The continued pursuit of wealth, in a world that has enough already (albeit very poorly distributed) is a formula for mass destitution.

A meaningful strike in defence of the living world is, in part, a strike against the desire to raise our incomes and accumulate wealth: a desire shaped, more than we are probably aware, by dominant social and economic narratives. I see myself as striking in support of a radical and disturbing concept: Enough. Individually and collectively, it is time to decide what enough looks like, and how to know when we’ve achieved it.

There’s a name for this approach, coined by the Belgian philosopher Ingrid Robeyns: limitarianism. Robeyns argues that there should be an upper limit to the amount of income and wealth a person can amass. Just as we recognise a poverty line, below which no one should fall, we should recognise a riches line, above which no one should rise. This call for a levelling down is perhaps the most blasphemous idea in contemporary discourse.

But her arguments are sound. Surplus money allows some people to exercise inordinate power over others, in the workplace, in politics, and above all in the capture, use and destruction of natural wealth. If everyone is to flourish, we cannot afford the rich. Nor can we afford our own aspirations, that the culture of wealth maximisation encourages.

The grim truth is that the rich are able to live as they do only because others are poor: there is neither the physical nor ecological space for everyone to pursue private luxury. Instead we should strive for private sufficiency, public luxury. Life on earth depends on moderation.

http://www.monbiot.com