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Olduvai III: Catacylsm
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Our Predicament Re-stated

Our Predicament Re-stated

There is a meme doing the rounds on social media… a picture of a vegetable patch, captioned “the time is coming when only those who know how to grow food will survive.”  The idea being that, as our complex civilisation breaks down, we will be forced to return to a far simpler economy, where most people revert to roles within agriculture and food production.  As with most memes, it functions as a thought-stopper… one which hides the obvious reality – backed by millennia of experience – that, in fact, “it will be the people who know how to force others to grow food,” who will be the real winners in the post-industrial economy.

At a deeper level though, the meme is an example of the way we delude ourselves into believing that a positive version of collapse – usually in the form of managed de-growth – is possible, and that those promoting such a view will be the ones who inherit whatever benefits it offers.  History says otherwise, of course.  Life in pre-industrial civilisations was mostly short, brutal, and often marred with chronic pain.  The best most people could hope for was life in an institutional version of slavery, where at least serfdom laid some nominal responsibilities on the clergy and the nobility who ruled over them.  And again, it was those with the wherewithal to protect and/or steal food by force who got to rule and to enjoy the few luxuries on offer.

Not that most of those promoting some version of the “green” techno-psychotic vision of a future of wind turbines and electric cars are likely to fare any better.  Sure, the WEF neofascists and their politician acolytes are currently making a play to cling on to power as industrial civilisation collapses…

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Olduvai IV: Courage
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Olduvai II: Exodus
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