The Dawn of Everything: A New History of Humanity by David Graeber and David Wengrow is, I think, a terrific contribution to human knowledge and guide to pursuing more of the same — as well as a notable accomplishment for the Davids of the world, who have perhaps been falling a bit short lately. A few of the points it documents and persuades of are:
[Note replaced video Oct. 10, 2020]
leftymathprof on Aug 21, 2020
Global warming is about to speed up abruptly, killing us all. Addressing it will require huge changes that the plutocrats are not making, so we must overthrow them.
Consumer society has tried to legitimize itself by making people believe that it represents a sustainable way of living. For those in the First World, all the evidence that a meltdown is coming—the deterioration of the climate, the decline of the biosphere, the diminishing of available resources—has usually existed outside of immediate view. Commercialism and the mass media, which have gained an unprecedented presence in our lives through the digital revolution, have distracted us from these realities while the machine of global capital has continued to run.
Waking from the Ancient Madness of Ownership
leftymathprof on Jan 24, 2020
For thousands of years we’ve endured wars, poverty, and other cruelties, all unnecessary. And now the madness is about to kill all of us with a climate apocalypse, which is coming much bigger and faster than most people realize. These problems can all be traced to a practice that we have long accepted as normal: the practice of not sharing with our cousins. Trade increases inequality, making corruption and plutocracy inevitable. Competition makes us insane. To avoid extinction we’ll need two revolutions.
Sent to Dandelion Salad by a friend; thanks, Jay!
The History Guy: History Deserves to Be Remembered on Jun 3, 2019
Dandelions are among the most populous and widespread plants on earth. The secret to their success has to do both with their unique characteristics, and their inextricable connection to humans. The history of humans and dandelions is forever linked in ways that may surprise you.
Paradise or Extinction
leftymathprof on Jun 8, 2019
The climate apocalypse will soon kill all of us (including the plutocrats), if we don’t take drastic measures right away. But the plutocrats are blocking those measures, because they don’t want anything cutting into their short-term profits. In this video I discuss the crazy culture that has us headed toward extinction. To survive, we need an immense cultural change.
with Chris Hedges
RT America on Nov 6, 2017
Pankaj Mishra, author of Age of Anger: A History of the Present, discusses the poisoning of civil society and undermining of political liberty that is fueling “a global turn to authoritarianism and toxic forms of chauvinism.” RT Correspondent Anya Parampil looks at how the New Deal saved the U.S. from political anarchy.
Civilization In Transition, Uncertainty and Opportunity
British filmmaker Adam Curtis recently released his new documentary ‘HyperNormalisation’. [See video below.] Brilliant in parts, this ambitious film reveals an image of a civilisation in turmoil. It shows how duplicitous, inadequate politicians have repeatedly deceived the public over the last forty years, and how their actions have caused increasing levels of chaos in the world, which they are unable to resolve. “We live in a strange time, extraordinary events keep happening that undermine the stability of our world,” the director declares, and yet, “those in control seem unable to deal with them. Nobody has any vision of a different or better kind of future.”
Wealth and power is the single greatest force that will lead to our species annihilation. It seems there is little historical antidote to the pathology of this class power. When a plutocracy grows into a rapacious system of exploitation, environmental destruction closely follows. Almost every past civilization has fallen in this manner, and we are not exempt.
by Noam Chomsky
In These Times
March 5, 2013
There is “capitalism” and then there is “really existing capitalism.”
The term “capitalism” is commonly used to refer to the U.S. economic system, with substantial state intervention ranging from subsidies for creative innovation to the “too-big-to-fail” government insurance policy for banks.
peakmoment·Jan 1, 2013
“The external growth of a budding economy is over. The focus on growth now needs to be on the inner world.” Carolyn Baker’s Navigating the Coming Chaos is a toolkit to prepare emotionally and spiritually for the collapse of industrial civilization now underway. First build an “internal bunker,” she suggests, to begin healing the fear, grief and despair that immobilize many people in our “culture of numbness.” From that foundation, she invites us to look at who our allies are ? people, places, possessions. Carolyn observes that many people experience a level of joy by doing this work (Episode 225). Continue reading