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Hope for the future – is there any?

The election of the current Australian government provides a small increase in hope for the future, but it is only small.

I am as guilty as anyone of ignoring the messages of global warming while I was still employed, and did not have time to understand how the whole world was entering the exponential increases in climate change.

And – as a mathematician – I understand the concepts underlying the word ‘exponential’!

In my late 80s, with a compressed spine and having suffered a mild stroke in early 2021, I am unlikely to experience, personally, the full extent of the changes which are rapidly occurring.

My four great grandchildren will!!

Rivers in Europe are drying up – how much longer before our floods turn to droughts?

Helped by Putin’s mad moves to create a Russian place in history, more nations than usual are facing famine.

Too many governments are led by mainly older males who have yet to understand the main lessons of history.

Change is inevitable.

Power is no substitute for using the knowledge of experts.

A candidate for leadership should not think popularity is highly important.- whereas respect for a leader IS important.

We have already laid the foundations for a world wherein the greed of the ‘haves’ is destroying our chances of surviving and thriving.

In my lifetime, the wealth of the world, instead of being used for research and useful action, has been diverted into massive individual shares of wealth for an incredibly small proportion of the population.

Taxation is a means of enabling governments to have the ability to help all who need help – which is an incredibly large portion of the world’s population.

Instead, the ‘haves’ have enabled a view that small government and low taxes are to be preferred.

BS!

Examine the satisfaction levels of those in Northern Europe, where high taxes are providing high levels of government support, and extreme poverty is hard to find.

Anyway – I am not the first to try to point out the errors we are making and the paths we ought to follow.

None of us have succeeded in helping people to ignore the lies from the greedy.

Perhaps the extinction of humans might enable Earth to recover from the harm we have done and are continuing to do.

Sad!!!

We could have achieved so much!

 

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14 comments

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  1. Ill fares the land

    I’m in two minds. My starting position is that climate change is real and action is needed. I am concerned that instead of looking at our own behaviours we still want governments to do the “work”. We still want to drive gas-guzzling SUV’s and dual cabs to work and the shops in large numbers, live in bigger houses, have larger fridges and TV’s and so on – and we’re showing no signs of giving those things up easily. We have long wanted abundant cheap energy; we want it more now than ever to power our wasteful and indulgent lifestyles, focused as we are on “competitive affluence” and, whilst some struggle to afford energy, for most energy remains cheap so we are happy to use lots of it. I also worry that while Labor has a much better game than the LNP (but that isn’t necessarily difficult), the Labor Minister King has announced a greater commitment to carbon capture and storage (“CCS”). CCS is a technology that sounds great in technical terms, but for now can’t be made to work on a large scale, despite $3 billion of government funding over the last decade and there aren’t enough cavernous “holes” in the Earth into which we could pump CO2 to “solve” the emissions crisis. Similarly, there isn’t enough uranium based on known reserves for nuclear to be the solution. When Angus Taylor prattled on about CCS, it was rightly derided as more Taylor “piffle” (he was really only known for piffle, nonsense and possibly even lunatic ranting depending upon your point of view), based on where development of CCS is at right now.

  2. paul walter

    In the end it comes back to neo liberal globalisation. A network of secretive Defence/surveillance treaties and FTAs have robbed local communities of self determintion and against the might of the global right, Labor, and anyone else, can only do so much.

    We are a s much a colony as a nation, the second is ubiquitous window dressing.

  3. Canguro

    re ‘Hope for the future – is there any?’… well, hope springs eternal in the human breast, and it ain’t over ’til the fat lady sings (credited to an Americans sports-writer as recently as 1976); and that’s all well and good but, it isn’t looking good, and you don’t need me to tell you that.

    I’m not by nature dour, or sour, or darkly pessimistic, or a doomsayer fond of ruining the party with dark prognostications and rumblings of imminent demise, or if not so, just around the corner, time wise, but it seems the jury’s pretty much out on this question.

    Sure, humans are problem solvers, the nonpareil example, given our endowment with the most developed neocortical aspect of brain anatomy in the animal kingdom; this prize from the evolutionary lucky dip barrel has in turn conferred language & speech, along with cognition, advanced spatial recognition and sensory perception and a whole lot more. We wouldn’t be where we are without it.

    The half glass full mob will argue that we can save ourselves; the pessimists will argue that it’s close to all over red rover. About the only useful thing I did in my seven decades of existence was to spend five years at a university and graduate with a science degree; but as an adult entrant in my thirties it wasn’t of enormous use as a career ticket; still, a very useful experience and if nothing else it taught me that science is a serious endeavour and ought to be paid the attention it deserves.

    So, my position, vis-vis the elephant in the room, global warming, and the potential for said elephant to crack a mental and run amok; it’s real, looming, and, unfortunately for humanity, irreversible.

    Too much carbon dioxide already within the atmosphere. Much methane yet to be released to contribute to the heat entrapment. Too little commitment from people who really ought to know better; governments federal, state and local, on a global basis. Little or no commitment to change from the great mass of humanity… as mentioned elsewhere, we love our easy lifestyle, our cars, our easy access to food via supermarkets and other end-of-chain retailers, conveniently ignoring the enormous energy costs involved in harvesting, packaging, transporting, cold-storing and more, we take consumer lifestyle artefacts such as heating and cooling to be givens, we give little or no thought to our energy consumption and where & how that energy is sourced, and we fight to preserve these ‘givens’ of an ‘advanced’ western lifestyle.

    Fossil fuel companies, meanwhile, post record profits and have little or no intention of winding back their enterprises. Governments, collectively, show little commitment to reining them in and fast-forwarding the transition to renewable energy sources and usage.

    The scientific community, the tens of thousands of professionals whose lives are dedicated to the study of global warming; physicists, chemists, biologists, marine scientists, atmospheric scientists, those who study the polar regions, the soils, the plant populations, the insects and mammals, and, I guess, our own species, are all of one voice, viz., we’re in deep deep trouble.

    Sanguinely, blithely, one might shrug and say, ‘Oh well, it’s bound to happen, and it is what it is. The planet will continue. After all, we’ve only been here for a mere eye-blink, and the earth’s 4.5 billion years old. Who cares?’

    I don’t think that’s the best point to make. As a species, we one amongst millions. That’s either a minor statistic, or a major one, depending on your point of view. There have been five mass extinction events in previous aeons, we’re now in the sixth, it’s fully a function of human activity, and it’s happening in the blink of a geological eye, time wise. Not good. And not a hopeful framework for the glass half full position.

    But by all means, be hopeful. It’s a better position than being utterly miserable. Enjoy what we have while we have time to do so. I have to say, though, I find it puzzling that young women are willing to have babies with what’s looming just around the corner.

  4. New England Cocky

    @ Albo’s Elbow: I am inclined to agree with you that the Albanese LABOR government is very capable of repeating the too many mistakes made by the self-serving COALition pandering & kow-towing to foreign owned multinational corporations, especially in mining.

    The removal of transparency in decision making, the slashing of staff support for Community Independents and the refusal to look at the role taken by gg David Hurley and the gg advocating for the $18 MILLION gift to the Australian Future Leadership Foundation Ltd ”charity” in the Scummo secret Ministries matter needs serious investigation. Remember, where there is smoke there is usually somebody burning the evidence.

  5. RoadKillCafe

    Yes Canguro, “ . . . As mentioned elsewhere, we love our easy lifestyle . . . “

    Perhaps, as Roger Waters suggests, in time, long after our demise, alien anthropologists will visit this planet, study our history and come to the only possible conclusion — we amused ourselves to death.

    Do we consider the why and the how of this planet and the many life forms that make this place habitable, this closed system, this finite earth. Why? A lonely speck in what appears to be a monstrous space, teeming with life and hope and dreams. Why? Could there be a reason behind this thing we call life, why we were given the greatest gift and greatest curse — free will. Why we are here.

    Do we consider that this life we lead, this society, the truths we are told are all artificial constructs, imagined and implemented many centuries ago by what I assume where men, perfected over time, well supported by organised religion. The defining elements of this construct are greed and power.

    We talk of karma, for instance, but, think about it, for there to be karma there must be an intelligence, a power to enact the what goes around comes around, doesn’t there?

    To me, it seems we have become so blinded in bullshit, we have well and truly forgotten we are one, we are a part of the whole, what we so willingly, ignorantly, wantonly destroy doesn’t need our species to survive. Nature seems to find a way to go on, the major problem is us.

    Is there hope? Why don’t we try to wake the fuck up and go hard or go home. We must at least try. We have really fucked up, we have a duty, a responsibility to at least try whatever you can think of. For us old toads, there is much new life that deserves far better future, deserves a chance.

    If there is to be hope, we must change. How? I don’t know.

  6. andy56

    look guys, i am in two camps. One one hand i want rapid action now. On the other hand, i recognise this ship is going to take time to turn around. The ALP government will make its fair share of crap decisions, but lets not kill them because they are not perfect.

    To me, labor have bought into the capitalist system. They have followed the Liberal economic agenda, because well, they are good at selling that narrative. Its won them a lot of elections. The ALP is sick of losing. For me, this an opportune time to rejig an economy to suit society rather than society being subservient to an economic agenda. One can hold one’s breath whilst breathing, lol.

  7. Albos Elbow

    New England Cocky, there is a royal commission in itself just on the dealings between Scummo and the GG.
    No wonder everything they do is “secret” and not reported anywhere.
    Seems the News Limited journalists knew what was happening but didn’t bother to tell anyone.

    Albo said he would keep his election promises which included meeting emissions reduction targets.
    Instead he talks about jobs for coal miners, what fuckin jobs, everything is automated?
    He says we “have to export Australian coal to reduce carbon emissions, because it is such “good quality” what a load of crap that is.
    Now his resource minister is going to open up 12 of the most pristine marine and coastal areas for fossil fuel exploration, “to help meet the demand for our gas, oil and coal”.
    For fuck sake, who is he governing for?

    The only promise he is going to keep so far is to give tax cuts to the rich, while the poor are homeless and can’t afford rent.

    People aren’t stupid, they already see him as “business as usual” for the COALition of Australian mining billionaires.

  8. totaram

    I am in agreement with Albos Elbow. These signs are not good. They talk about transparency and promptly put a shroud of secrecy over the National cabinet proceedings. How smart is that? Time for the polls to start showing that this won’t do.
    Why open things for exploration when you know they aren’t going to reach viability in the future? Not in the near future anyway. In the distant future we may figure out ways to use these precious chemicals, not for burning though.

    In fact, if the human species is lucky, fusion energy may be here soon enough. Otherwise, tough luck for the species. And Albo and Co will share responsibility.

  9. Harry Lime

    Meanwhile,the banana benders government has just approved the expansion of a fucking coal mine somewhere near Toowoomba on prime agricultural land.What global warming?Following hot on the heels of the Feds approval of a lazy 50,000 square klicks of ocean.Good thing we got rid of those climate change deniers,otherwise we’d be really fucked.Hope for the future is looking pretty grim.

  10. New England Cocky

    @ Albo’s Elbow: Then there is the ”small” matter of stripping the Community Independents of 3/4 staff to imhibit/eliminate surveillance of LABOR government business. This is simply ”NOT GOOD ENOUGH ALBO”!!!!!

  11. Albos Elbow

    The Morgan Gallop exit poll at the election recorded one of the main concerns of 80% of voters was action on climate change.
    They felt that Labor were a better choice on emissions reduction and climate change than the COALition.
    Seems we’ve been duped with another government scam.

    There is no fuckin future for the planet when you leave it to politicians to make the major decisions.
    Can’t trust any of them.

  12. Mark Shields

    Dearest Rosemary (J36), I fully agree with your latest Post at 27/8/22. As I too grow older and find my local community to be less interested than when I worked in their community; I can only hope that your experiential inspiration will do somethinbg to alter the stasis, we currently find ourselves in. I am so utterly disgusted with Most People’s acceptance of our State of Environmental Vandalism: So looking forward to an Age where the population is not interested in V8 motors, Jet-Skis, or Petrol-fuelled appliances! Lets Hope for a Miracle: Love your work Rosemary!!

  13. Canguro

    There’s an oldish yarn kicking around about a psychology experiment conducted with two kids, one in each room; the first kid has a ton of toys to play with, the second a pile of horse poop. The psychologist leaves them for a while and on returning he finds the first kid quite upset… he doesn’t like this toy, or that one, he’s broken a few, he’s angry and upset at not having the toy he wanted. The second kid is having the time of his life, there’s horseshit flung around the room, he’s covered in it, and he’s as happy as can be. ‘Why’, asks the therapist. The kid says, ‘With all this horseshit in here, there’s gotta be a pony underneath it somewhere.’

    It’s an apt analogy for referencing frames of mind in the context of circumstances.

    I know I bang on a bit about the imminent demise of the the planet’s ecosystem, and yes, it’s a pity, but it’s also a reality and as the Buddha said, ‘why be unhappy about something if it can be remedied, and what is the use of being unhappy about something if it cannot be remedied?’

    There’s still a massive amount of treasure surrounding us, despite the trash, and in that spirit, of appreciating the treasure, an evening offering of this classic piece by the Brazilian composer Heitor Villa-Lobos…featuring the sublime Barbara Hannigan. Enjoy!

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