Rigor Mortis

“Doubt is our product,” a cigarette executive once observed, “since it is the best means of competing with the “˜body of fact’ that exists in the minds of the general public. It is also the means of establishing a controversy.”

All this “debate” about what is true, and what is not, who has facts and who doesn’t, what science actually says and reveals and what it does not, has ultimately proven to be entirely pointless.  Almost.

As one poster recently said,

“The tools that have allowed us to dominate our environment and survive outside of it will most likely ensure our ultimate failure. Our incredible mental abilities have developed to serve our emotions.

We are emotional creatures who tend to abandon logic, fact and knowledge in favor of emotional attachments, even if it kills us all. We can know a thing, through and through, but still refuse to address it.

Humans refuse to do what is required to save themselves from their own destructive ways.  We can study and dissect and analyze an issue ad infinitum, employing all of our technical capabilities and scientific expertise, but we remain completely and hopelessly enslaved to our emotional responses on how we actually deal with the results.

If you haven’t yet noticed, the condition of rigor mortis, the “stiffening of the muscles” at the onset of death, has now set in for the human race.

Helping humans to survive their own stupidity has become an exercise in even more stupidity in many respects. Even the best and brightest among us all are getting sucked into useless debates and defensive actions that ultimately serve no purpose whatsoever but to appease the knee-jerk and ill-informed emotional responses of those that disagree.

Recently, I noted that the headlines mentioned that the Freedom of Information Act was being abused to “harass and intimidate” scientist.  In my own words, they are finding it harder and harder to comply with the emotional and useless response of individuals alleging to have “need” for source data, algorithms and research results used and developed by  scientists.  Many of these requests are intended to harass and intimidate scientists, something that has long been noted by the scientific community.

We’re now where extremely valuable time and resources are being expended to appease the idiots who have no interest other then their own self-serving interest at stake.  Ultimately, this means that the human race is now at odds with itself, like white cells attacking red cells.  This is nothing new, but the stakes have never been higher.  We are ultimately talking about the survival of the human race, and the survival of the the living biosphere.

As serious as this is (or should be), the vast majority of us are really not that interested. We’ve got our eyes fixed on something else entirely and that is namely, our next slice of the dwindling pie.  Like hungry children, we’re eying everyone else with a wary eye, who’s going to get the last piece?

We’ve long since turned to technology to solve our way out of this mess, but this has proven to be increasingly elusive. In many ways, technology has failed us. Instead of giving us truly sustainable ways to live, technology has become a leading example of destruction, or more aptly put, how not to live. But we continue to do this anyway, how not to live, fully understanding now (among the informed of course) that this is self-destruction in slow motion.

This is not the “fault” of technology of course, the fault is actually ours, we are after all, the technological innovators and inventors.  How we should utilize technology (and even science) to support our existence is largely based upon our “markets”, another human invention, and one that is entirely based upon our emotional responses (versus our practical needs).

We’ve now run out of “room” so to speak on how much more we can innovate and invent before it all comes crashing down. We’re already seeing the effects of our implementation and ‘intervention’ that technology has made possible for billions of humans, the effects which are now killing us in record numbers.  But we’ve a long ways to go, there are after all many more of us still left to destroy…

So we will continue on our same path as before, ignoring all the warnings, and all the “science”, and even the unfolding disasters now occurring. The mantra continues, we’ve still got time, there is ample resources left, it’s not as bad as some say… giving credence to our defacto emotional responses playing first chair to our path to destruction.

The seeds of doubt are now highly contagious and extremely destructive. And that’s all it takes anymore. You can ignore the unfolding disasters as having “other” causes, and why not? It’s what every nation seems to be doing. Mudslides in Brazil are a long, long ways off and I don’t live in Missouri either. There’s no wind here!

If we’re not dead already, we soon will be.  The Anthropocene is the reason.  Driven by emotional response for human demands, we’re starting to experience (our) true side-effects.

I cannot offer any misled hope (which is just another emotional response by the way). Most of those who are are quite willing to geo-engineer their way (and your future) to Nirvana would try if they could. Or posit the lies that we can “stop” our misbehavior through political activism. Or somehow reign in our carnal appetites through public awareness before it is too late.

Not me. I admit to having investigated all of these so-called “solutions” and will now loudly proclaim that rigor mortis is setting in for the human race, or soon will be. We’re virtually guaranteed a least a thousand years or more of catastrophic climate change, which we are ill-prepared for. Modern civilization has little resiliency for something like this, with our just-in-time delivery systems and energy dependent agriculture.  There are other reasons which I won’t bother to elucidate right now.

All this “debate” about what is true, and what is not, who has facts and who doesn’t, what science actually says and reveals and what it does not, has ultimately proven to be entirely pointless.  Almost.  I said “almost” because there are a tiny few who are truly trying to make a course correction for humanity, but by and large, the seeds of doubt being wildly scattered about are making this virtually impossible.

Even so, the tiny few are my heroes. We applaud those that sacrifice themselves for the greater good — those that give their lives so that others might live, especially on this Memorial Day.  But we tend to forget those that are ultimately concerned with the fate of the entire human race!

I’m enough of a pessimist (realist actually) to state that we don’t deserve to be “saved” from our stupidity. I marvel at those that continue to try, because humans have a verifiable, long and sordid and truly violent history of great destruction and depravity.  No, we are not all like that, but enough of us are, generation by generation.

Civilization has sought to ‘temper’ this beastly nature with limited success (or failure, depending on how you look at it). Civilization has both enabled and suppressed human development, also depending on how you look at it.  Our measures of ‘morality’ and ‘advancement’ are relative to the times in which we live, which is why what we find reprehensible today was tolerated or even encouraged before.  And just the opposite is true going backwards then forwards in time.

This means that humanity has a relative yardstick when it comes to what is right and what is wrong. You don’t have to like this fact, but it is still true nonetheless.  We’ve learned that some thing remain forever wrong, like murder and genocide, but we’ve yet to learn that careless self-destruction is no different.  Ecocide, the death of the biosphere, the living envelope of life that surrounds the entire planet, is one such example. It’s wrong for us to do this, sacrificing all future generations of life for our own carnal pleasures.  Our yardstick in our modern era is tied to Wall Street performance, which has nothing to do with natural capital and everything to do with monetary capital.

We are now being constantly reminded that these measurements are inaccurate and misleading at best, and highly destructive at worst.  While both are very true, our emotional response and attachments to worldly ‘things’ including monetary capital makes us all act in very irrational and self-destructive ways. The seeds of doubt have been sown long before our own births and we are their modified offspring.  We’re aware in slight ways that something is seriously amiss, but we still cannot seem to put our fingers upon the pulse of exactly what it is.  A careful inspection reveals the dying heartbeat that can be felt reverberating throughout all of of civilization now, a dying planet being overrun by the Anthropocene.

In his book, “The World As It Is“, Chris Hedges writes about our ongoing destructive nature and our propensity to simply look the other way. The subtitle of his book is Dispatches on the Myth of Human Progress.  I recommend you read it.

We ARE approaching death, having far, far exceeded the natural limits of what can possibly be tolerated, and the rigor mortis of humanity if we continue to fail to heed the warnings from the best of us.

I can only say at this point in time that ‘saving humanity’ is a misguided idea, itself based upon our inherent emotional response. Even so, being an emotional creature like all of you, I’d still like to see some saved.  But only some.

Helping humans to survive their own stupidity has become an exercise in even more stupidity in many respects.

Seems like we have come an awful long ways already only to self-destruct at the end.

What an incredible waste this would be.

We are the first generation facing the evidence of global change. It therefore falls upon us to change our relationship with the planet, in order to tip the scales towards a sustainable world for future generations.

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