All posts filed under: environment

The 6th mass extinction is a product of capitalism — not population growth

by Barnaby Philips, 25 August, 2017, via RCG ‘Every particular mode of production has its own special laws of population, which are historically valid within that particular sphere. An abstract law of population exists only for plants and animals and even then only in the absence of any historical intervention by man’ – Karl Marx, Capital, Volume 1, Chapter 25, pp783-784 ‘You don’t need to be a scientist to know what’s causing the sixth mass extinction,’ began Professor Paul R. Ehrlich in a Guardian article on 11 July. Given the ‘developed’ imperialist world’s throwaway consumerism and the well-documented destruction of the environment by multinational corporations, it should indeed be fairly obvious. Ehrlich however names one main culprit: population growth. His solution? Some unspecified form of ‘humane’ population reduction. Apparently the reason you don’t need to be a scientist is because the pseudo-science of eugenics suffices. Ehrlich must be refuted with science.  It is capitalism’s need for infinite economic growth that is destroying life on earth. Ehrlich is best known for his 1968 book The Population Boom, which warned that …

‘Inclusive Capitalism’, Nancy Pelosi, and the Dying Planet

by Paul Street, July 21, 2017, via CounterPunch A recent Washington Post and ABC poll finds that just 37 percent of Americans think that the Democratic Party “stands for something.”  Fifty two percent say it’s about nothing more than opposing Trump. The 37 percent is right. The Democratic Party stands for something, alright.  It stands for the socio-pathological system of class rule and environmental ruin called capitalism – and for capitalism’s evil Siamese twin imperialism. So does the far more openly right-wing Republican Party, of course, but that’s fairly common knowledge.  It’s more complicated with the Democrats, who like to pose as being “on the left” while carrying water for Big Business. It’s nothing new. Long before the rise of dismal, dollar-drenched neoliberal era Dems and Robert Rubin associates like Bill Clinton and Barack Hamilton Project Obama, the Democrats stood in the lead of the profits regime. This goes all the way back to that savage Indian-killer Andrew Jackson and up through that quintessential corporate liberal Woodrow Wilson, New Deal hero Franklin Roosevelt (who boasted about having saved the …

VIDEO: Monsanto Employing Troll Army To Silence Online Dissent?

Ever encountered oddly persistent commenters insisting they’ve been eating Roundup for breakfast for the last fifteen years and feel just great? Ever wondered why it’s hard to find online sources for the studies that find major health issues with any of Monsanto’s products? This may be of interest to you… Article from Global Research here Full list of show notes here.

King Coal and the Nuclear Heartland, Hand in Hand in Cumbria

by Marianne Birkby at Radiation Free Lakeland The “nuclear heartland” is how Cumbria, home to Sellafield, the nuclear industry’s rear end is described. Cumbrians are told that new nuclear is ‘necessary to combat climate change’ even if that means tens of billions of tax payers money. Because the nuclear industry is “low carbon” (it isn’t). At the same time, Cumbrians are urged to welcome the reopening of the Whitehaven coalmine ‘ to produce steel for wind turbines.’ Radiation Free Lakeland, a local nuclear safety group are raising the alarm “Any deep mining in the vicinity of Sellafield should be forfeit, any plan which has the potential to increase seismic activity in the Sellafield area is reckless beyond belief. We hope others will voice their opposition” Is Cumbria Being Frogmarched into Nuclear AND Coal? The plan to reopen the Whitehaven coal mine under the Irish Sea has been rumbling along for a few years with no raised eyebrows. Why are alarm bells not ringing out loud and clear? This nasty plan will go before Cumbria County …

None of the world’s top industries would be profitable if environmental costs were fully integrated

by David Roberts, Grist, April 17, 2013 The notion of “externalities” has become familiar in environmental circles. It refers to costs imposed by businesses that are not paid for by those businesses. For instance, industrial processes can put pollutants in the air that increase public health costs, but the public, not the polluting businesses, picks up the tab. In this way, businesses privatize profits and publicize costs. While the notion is incredibly useful, especially in folding ecological concerns into economics, I’ve always had my reservations about it. Environmentalists these days love speaking in the language of economics — it makes them sound Serious — but I worry that wrapping this notion in a bloodless technical term tends to have a narcotizing effect. It brings to mind incrementalism: boost a few taxes here, tighten a regulation there, and the industrial juggernaut can keep right on chugging. However, if we take the idea seriously, not just as an accounting phenomenon but as a deep description of current human practices, its implications are positively revolutionary. To see what …