• Hanover
    4.3k
    That's a flippant and facile way to dismiss a prediction. Of course you must be familiar with the story of the boy who cried "wolf". No doubt superficial thinkers will dismiss any dire prediction with the same blithe disregard as the people in that story dismissed the boy's cry for help.Janus

    I predict the world will be around in 40 years, and I chastise you twice the amount you chastised me for flippantly rejecting a prediction.
  • Janus
    6.7k
    Great, I do so enjoy being chastised for rejecting predictions I didn't reject, much less flippantly reject.
  • Noah Te Stroete
    1k
    I predict Ariana Grande will be president in 40 years.
  • Janus
    6.7k
    I don't flippantly reject that prediction, I thoughtfully reject that flippant prediction. :razz:
  • unenlightened
    3.3k
    And yet again, one cannot even wonder what to do about the various factual trends that have been observed and catalogued, because one has been diverted into a fruitless tit for tat argument about predictions. It's a lawyerly tactic of diverting attention away from the evidence that cannot be seriously questioned. And it is illegitimate and inappropriate. Objection, your honour.
  • Josh Alfred
    98
    There are plenty of ways civilization as we know it could collapse. These threats are no less or more probable everyday, at all times. In truth, no one really knows where's it going -- when it will end or what is to come of this thing we call civilization.
  • Echarmion
    303
    And yet again, one cannot even wonder what to do about the various factual trends that have been observed and catalogued, because one has been diverted into a fruitless tit for tat argument about predictions. It's a lawyerly tactic of diverting attention away from the evidence that cannot be seriously questioned. And it is illegitimate and inappropriate. Objection, your honour.unenlightened

    A Problem might be that there is very little new to say about the problem, and a philosophy forum isn't necessarily the best place to look for expertise on how to deal with the ecological crisis.

    There is little reason to hope that world leaders, be they democratically elected or not, will take any steps with serious side effects until significant and visible damage has occurred. The same is, broadly speaking, true for individual lifestyle changes. The only viable way to improve those chances is individual activism. So, we should all campaign, actively and seriously, for major policy changes. But will we? And where do we go for the right policies to campaign for?
  • unenlightened
    3.3k
    A Problem might be that there is very little new to say about the problem, and a philosophy forum isn't necessarily the best place to look for expertise on how to deal with the ecological crisis.Echarmion

    Well ever since the 70's I have been exploring and advocating 'alternatives' in eduction, food production and distribution, and housing. There is no expertise, and there is no solution. It is easy enough to theorise what 'we' could do, but, 'we' are not going to do it, for reasons I already mentioned. There is something new (to me, anyway) to say, that has to come out of the shock of despair. But because I don't want to confuse this thread, or by any means discourage folks from campaigning, and changing their lifestyles as best they can, I have taken that response to a new thread.
  • Jake
    1.2k
    I don't know what to say, except don't hold your breath waiting for insights, solutions or even recognition. My own recent thread on the topic was not terribly illuminating.unenlightened

    It might possibly have been, except that you seemed determined to run off anybody who might have actually understood the threat posed by climate change. You get that climate change is going to be socially disruptive, but you haven't thought through what that entails. The real threat is not climate change, but our reaction to climate change. The real threat, as usual, is us.
  • Marchesk
    2.5k
    Just remember to double tap the zombies. Also, good cardio for running away.
  • Janus
    6.7k
    The real threat is not climate change, but our reaction to climate change. The real threat, as usual, is us.Jake

    Climate change (generated by us) is a real threat, and so we are a real threat insofar as we created it and are unwilling or unable to do anything to halt it or even ameliorate its effects by slowing down population and economic growth and exploitation of resources.
  • I like sushi
    280
    Funny, I think the opposite. For starters a truly global community is a recent thing. I see civilization becoming more of a global social entity rather than a dispersed a fragmented whole.

    Colonizing Mars and the moon - in part - will be interesting events to kick-off into the next century. I cannot imagine what kind of problems we’ll have to deal with and how our self-engineering will alter us as a species even more than it already has. It’s truly an amazing and exciting revolution we’re living in and I for one embrace and welcome the changes and dificulties that will come our way.

    The one thing I am reasonably sure about is the decline of the idea of “nation”. I think globally we’re starting to see the protest of this decline voiced in some political spheres. As the ease fo instant communication becomes more easy, and languages more widespread, the sense of national identities will slowly wane ... no idea what will fill this possible void though.
  • Jake
    1.2k
    Climate change (generated by us) is a real threat, and so we are a real threat insofar as we created it and are unwilling or unable to do anything to halt it or even ameliorate its effects by slowing down population and economic growth and exploitation of resources.Janus

    Imho, the real threat is how we will react to climate driven changes to the status quo, and less so the change itself.

    The actual changes to the climate are unfolding quickly in historic terms, but still we're talking in terms of years, decades, centuries. Our reaction to climate driven social change could crash civilization literally within a few hours.

    Modern urban civilization is very fragile. As just one example, the average urban dweller (most of humanity now) knows little about obtaining food other beyond swiping a credit card at the grocery store. Any source of stress which threatens the highly complex human food supply chain can lead to mass chaos within days.

    Climate change could indeed be the deciding source of stress, but there are other more immediate potential sources, such as a 2008 style collapse of the financial system which isn't successfully managed.
  • unenlightened
    3.3k
    The real threat is not climate change, but our reaction to climate change. The real threat, as usual, is us.Jake

    I agree and disagree. Immediately, for sure, as the cliche has it nowhere is more than about three meals away from chaos and insurrection. It is not hard to imagine a Syrian type disintegration in Europe, the US, etc. And then add nuclear weapons and unknown biological and chemical weapons to that, and the immediate may be all that there will be.

    But supposing there are human survivors, and that life itself survives, that is when engagement with climate change really begins.
  • Noah Te Stroete
    1k
    Just remember to double tap the zombies. Also, good cardio for running away.Marchesk

    :lol:
  • Anthony
    96
    As long as GDP, the stock market, and infinite economic growth (not even possible without renewable energy..) appears necessary for survival...we are doomed. None of these things have anything to do with survival. We live in an age where people have been insinuated with an idea that life is work...working to live is a lost notion. To the extent you work to live, you are less dependent on the economic games, and you are closer to being a drop out (where dropping out may be the only solution: dropping out and working to live, to survive; to wit, not working to keep industry and capital alive having unreflectingly convinced yourself you are working to live). Somehow I feel needed change would be seen in a massive decline of the entertainment industry as well,...which indexes people are being distracted from real issues. To the extent people need entertained mirrors the extent they refuse to see what is in themselves and in the world.

    If you get a diagnosis of cancer, would you change your lifestyle? This is what it's like anent the humanism's disregard for anything not human: h. sapiens appear to be a species incapable of changing its collective lifestyle when facing a cancer diagnosis; unfortunately, this means we belong to a species that does nothing but exploit and consume each other and planetary resources until everything is without elan vitale as a proper measure of order, or if it can it will move to another planet with its wrecking ball.

    An individual has the ability to change and reorder his life in a way impossible to the collective horde. It is high time each of us think about doing so. There are major obstacles. Market society, for example, and the idea of sacrificing your life to a romanticism of numbers (income/profit) and mechanicalized time...surely these aren't sane maxims. Once you start working to live and not living to work (i.e., the only self-preservation if we're being intellectually honest)...you separate from this insane perpetual mechanical living, your work is related only to the projects you have to get done, and not totally controlled by a device human's invented. You stop treating people as means to an end or objects to consume, whether for your entertainment, or for the mercenary valorization of transactionalism. The prognosis doesn't look good.

    One thing I'll bet the farm on: humans are more distracted and overstimulated than ever before...you can be sure not too many people are really ready to give up their willy-nilly hyperstimulations and take an honest look at the state of the world. This is maybe the most troubling aspect of what's before us. And this is right where I'd begin teasing apart what could/should be done to reverse the madness. As an anti-humanist (that is, thinking science and technology devoid of reason and idealism are going to save us), and someone without a smartphone (mark of the beast...ha), I would suggest asking if people shouldn't disconnect from each other a little and reconnect with autochthonous, telluric values as the obvious place to start convalescing. People are blinded by themselves and their systems and institutions, this is clear. The looking glass is a narcissistic one, individual to collective, and this is a big part of why the individual and collective can't stop changing in needless ways, and start changing in needed ways.
  • Janus
    6.7k
    Climate change could indeed be the deciding source of stress, but there are other more immediate potential sources, such as a 2008 style collapse of the financial system which isn't successfully managed.Jake

    Yes, lack of proper regulation is a real danger. The way I see it, the Industrial Revolution made possible the spectacular burgeoning of science and technology, with all its health and lifestyle benefits, and the Industrial Revolution itself was made possible by the discovery of fossil fuels. It's arguable that it would be impossible to sustain our current lifestyles by substituting renewable energy sources for fossils fuels, let alone bring the rest of the world's poor into middle class life. And yet, to do just that is the "official" global aim.

    I think perhaps the greatest potential rapidly precipitating threat (aside from possible ecological catastrophes such as the collapse of the Greenland and/or West Antarctic ice sheets) could be a collapse of what appears to be a gigantic Ponzi scheme: the US shale oil industry, a collapse due to the impossibility of sustaining oil prices at a level sufficient to yield an actual profit to that industry.
  • ssu
    996
    I think perhaps the greatest potential rapidly precipitating threat (aside from possible ecological catastrophes such as the collapse of the Greenland and/or West Antarctic ice sheets) could be a collapse of what appears to be a gigantic Ponzi scheme: the US shale oil industry, a collapse due to the impossibility of sustaining oil prices at a level sufficient to yield and actual profit to that industry.Janus
    Well, it isn't a Ponzi Scheme, it's a simple case of the market mechanism.

    Too low oil prices for enough producers -> drop in supply -> demand larger than supply -> higher oil prices

    And if the oil prices climb too high, then the Global economy halts like someone would have put a handbrake on and then the prices fall again. Also with high oil prices other energy sources become competitive.
  • Janus
    6.7k
    Well, it isn't a Ponzi Scheme, it's a simple case of the market mechanism.ssu

    It's a Ponzi scheme if it is running on investors' capital, and not on reinvestment of profits, and there is no plausible likelihood of there ever being a return of the investors capital investment, let alone a profit.

    According to some commentators Wall Street is now shying away from shale oil.

    https://oilprice.com/Energy/Energy-General/Wall-Street-Has-Lost-Faith-In-US-Shale.html
  • ssu
    996
    It's a Ponzi scheme if it is running on investors' capital, and not on reinvestment of profits, and there is no plausible likelihood of there ever being a return of the investors capital investment, let alone a profit.Janus
    Like um…. Silicon Valley and the IT-sector have done now for decades?

    Besides, 11 million barrels per day and being the 3rd largest producer in the World doesn't sound like a Ponzi scheme.
  • Janus
    6.7k
    Like um…. Silicon Valley and the IT-sector have done now for decades?

    Besides, 11 million barrels per day and being the 3rd largest producer in the World doesn't sound like a Ponzi scheme.
    ssu

    So, Silicon Valley and the IT-sector have made no profit for decades, and provided no return for investors?

    11 million barrels per day...etc.might not sound like a Ponzi scheme. What would you call a venture that continues only on the strength of investors' money and government subsidy that yields no return for investors?
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