Somebody Oughtta Do Somethin

Content Warning:  Back on that Climate Doom Bullshit.

There are very few people in the world with the power to course correct on the capitalism-inflicted extinction of humanity, but the facts that are as clear as day to you and I?  Those privileged few are as blind to them as we are to (most*) ultraviolet light.  I mean that.  We can be surrounded by UV, soaked in it, and not perceive it with our senses or minds.

Privilege is a powerful blinder – even at the feeblest levels.  A middle class person one medical situation away from crushing poverty is measurably less empathetic and less generous compared to the poor.  Take that effect and multiply it by a billion.  Musk, Gates, Saudi princes – they could have the plainest truths immediately in front of them, blotting out anything else, and rather than see it they will simply go blind to everything.  Hence the ludicrous fantasia of space escape.

That’s why they don’t take action.  I’ve said before capitalism is a blame diffusion engine par excellence.  Millionaires, politicians, people with hands on levers and buttons of that could theoretically take action – they want to take care of themselves and their own, can always leave it to someone else to take the meaningful action, always have an excuse.  Billionaires are wealthy enough to have a real chance of escape from that game.  The existence of trillionaires?  That means we’ve officially reached the point where a single person could easily plow through all those mirrors and illusions and games, could just decide to do something about the problem and make it real.  But they won’t.  They don’t.

I feel that blinded by god emperor privilege, maybe they can’t?  Maybe the argument that capitalism is an inevitable expression of human nature and that anything else is sky-eyed impossible dreams, while facile and defeatist, might be completely true.  But I’ll take it a step farther than the people who use that as a defense of capitalism – If this argument is true, we’re all gonna fuckin’ die like (most**) dinosaurs.  We’ll be lucky if there’s an organism like Lystrosaurus left to eke out a future for tetrapods of any kind.  I’ve said before that I think some few humans are likely to survive the climate apocalypse by merit of our social and mental powers, but if we are truly as greedy and useless the capitalist beast?  We won’t make it.

I don’t remember why I started writing this article.  I claimed once before I was swearing off climate doomposts, but originally this wasn’t meant to be about that.  I think I just wanted to expand on my “angler” thesis with some recent insight I’ve had.  What was that?  I’m too warm to think.  That kind of design flaw isn’t gonna be helpful in short order on this bitch of an earth.  Hm…

Fucking hell.  I have completely fucking forgotten my point.  This sucks ass.  I fucking despise summer.

*I had a feeling I should double check that, given the depth of complexity and weirdness and nature, and found an article to undermine my simile.  Ignore that, please.   **I knew this I just wanted to say the phrase “die like dinosaurs” because like many clown-ass writers I like alliteration.  Then I felt guilty about it, hence this edit.  Now it looks ridiculous for other reasons.


  1. says

    I just remembered one of my recent thoughts and this might have been the one I lost. Appropriately, it’s similar to the comment I left on my angler post, about people miseducating themselves and their children. This moment of intense cultural fascism has been brought to you by fucking algorithms, and it’s another example of the mindless autocannibalism of capitalism.

    Everything cultural IS political, so when robots set to sell people their own identities with targeted advertisement, they reinforce our local values, thus driving politics to hardbitten extremism for no better purpose than to keep web-based advertising profitable. It’s bonkers. Basically mainstream america has been driven hard right by people selling car insurance and motherfucking soap.

    This political division profits nobody but cable news freaks and purveyors of radicalism (and snake oil). But the advertisers are blind, it’s all automatic, nobody to notice or take responsibility for the problem at any step of the process. Money justifies itself and justifies the annihilation of the society on which it depends – a virus that kills its host and makes surprised pikachu face as the body begins to rot.

    I want capitalism gone as much as the next hard lefty or human emotionally invested in the perpetuation of their species, but the peace and short-term well-being of every man, woman, child, business, and political institution would be massively benefited by a push for genuine moderate-ass centrism. Not the fake centrism of right wing democrats, but the real thing. No more scapegoats, a genuine willingness to let people live as they choose.

    But that might hurt the advertising business or require anyone to think of anything over money for a split fucking second, so we can’t have that.

  2. says

    I guess what I’m terming “moderate-ass centrism” might be better termed humanism, but I don’t mean this in a progressive or hippy way. I mean that we, right now, could benefit from a sense of shared humanity with everyone around us. Rednecks going, “ho hum, there go them city slickers again, queerin’ it up, god bless ’em,” and letting us live. City slickers going, “ho hum, there go those rednecks, paying money to megachurches and shootin’ at some food.”

    And I don’t mean that to say that progressives have even a millimeter of ground to concede or that we should. But we are being sold a freaked out jumped up terror of conservatives right now by shitheads who profit from it. It is fairly accurate and justified – we have something to fear – but if enough people from every faction felt more kindly disposed toward every kind of human, more OK with people having differences…

    Not that we don’t already, really, but I guess I just mean if we had a *shared* sense of humanity with them. If we all got on the same page about that one thing, we’d have less violence and hatred.

    And the reason I bring this up in this context is because it could absolutely be sold to us the same way as soap and car insurance, and it should be. There’s a commercial for pants I’d get sometimes for a minute where a black lady and a white man do a square dance at the hootenanny, and that is what should be sold. But dollars to donuts anybody with republican browser history *is not shown that commercial* because they might close the browser tab in racist disgust.

    But who knows? If you can sell the bitches pants, maybe you can sell them tolerance by ignoring the worst people acting at their absolute worst, by not being death afraid of losing the nazi dollar when you sell your fabric softener. Just a fuckin’ thought.

  3. says

    You know I can see them trying. Like I said, that latest Superman show on CW selling itself to people who think conservatives are human. Stargirl likewise. Commercials and TV shows that depict characters that resemble cultural archetypes of conservatives but have them get on to some extent with archetypes of liberals – like Ron Swanson on Parks&Rec. These things exist but they aren’t working on anyone except very detached liberals. Maybe they’re being targeted to that crowd by algorithms and never being shown to people in Arkansas. I don’t know. I’m a turkey marching in a circle around a scary tree.

  4. lochaber says

    recently traveled to a smallish university town for work. Hit up a bar or two afterwards, and at one point was approached by a talkative outgoing sort.

    whatever, chit-chat, amusing comments, etc… And then something about how we have to “just get over this pandemic bullshit”, which immediately caught my attention and raised my hackles.

    But, I think to myself, it’s a rural area, less populous, etc., so even if they aren’t MAGAts, they are less likely to have seen/known direct effects of COVID compared to people living in urban areas that were hit harder, hit earlier, and the virus had a much easier time spreading due to population size and density, etc.

    So, I try and take a less combative, more explanatory stance on the pandemic, and was immediately met with something about how many of their relatives died to it (wtf, not only has one person in your close family caught it, but also died from it, and more than one!? how does that not kick a “shit ain’t right” switch in your head?), but people die all the time, and it’s just a cold, and we’ve all had colds, and we really need to reopen things, and get stuff running again, and it’s not a problem, and they own three bars…

    And right there, I just couldn’t. I wasn’t up for getting into a fight or even a yelling match, but it was clear to me that all they cared about was their loss of profit, and they were demanding to put their workers and customers at risk to keep their wallet full, despite claiming to have lost (multiple!!) close family members.

    All too many people, even in our weird little cluster of the internet/politics/whatever, believe what supports and reinforces their desired world-views, and are rarely open to questioning their beliefs, regardless of evidence.

    If we can’t agree that COVID is a risk, and take measures to counter it, even while our friends, neighbors, coworkers, and family members are falling ill and even dying from it, we aren’t going to do anything about climate change. It’s just too abstract for a segment of people that can’t look past the next quarterly profits report.

    It’s fuckin infuriating…

  5. says

    What we believe as reasonable isn’t 100% controlled by the media we are exposed to, but it is very strongly influenced by it. We get plenty of affirmation of our world views from social platforms, even wordpress blogs lol. The mouthiest humans set the baseline for what we regard as normal thought around us. It’s the reason bullying in junior high is so horrific. We need some kind of control for bad actors. We’re living in junior high world.

    But yeah, stuff like that is a huge wedge to a sense of shared humanity. Was it ever necessary that covid scumbaggery become a part of conservative identity? No, and I think a lot of quiet, cowed conservatives wish to hell it had not. Like the rest of us, but not allowed to say their piece due to risk of alienation or physical harm.

    I say this but the rate to which bars, churches, and sporting events are packed really does suggest they might all be that hellishly ignorant. Maybe the quietly sensible conservative – swept under and disturbed by the tide of fascism around them – is a myth.

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