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Was the Club of Rome & MIT study right about soon-arriving resource shortages and the collapse of humanity? Part 2 of a 3 Part Series

The book, Limits to Growth, published in 1972 was designed to publicize the findings of an MIT study funded by a group of European industrialists calling themselves the Club of Rome. Was this MIT collapse study correct?

(This is Part two of our series on the Club of Rome predictions. It was written by Bruce Nappi, a long-time Job One for Humanity volunteer and a former Sandia National Lab, and U. California Lawrence Livermore National Lab scientist.)

These leaders, a number from the auto industry, were already encountering natural resource limits that impacted auto production. The goal of the study was to anticipate serious future production problems.

The observations made by the book, with the support of the U.N., were initially taken seriously by most world companies. Plans were developed and about to be enacted. The one significant country that did not go along was the U.S. Instead, the U.S. government, academia, and highly impacted companies, led by the carbon fuel industry, launched an effort to heavily discredit the program. They used the same approach and consulting firms that discredited the claims of tobacco and asbestos links to cancer. These same firms, and their approaches, with huge funding from the carbon industry, are currently a major force working to discredit scientific findings about global warming and climate change.

In the early 1970s, a significant scientific study was conducted that addressed the viability of infinite growth in human population and the economy. That study concluded these ongoing assumptions were not viable long term. In fact, the study realized that severe repercussions to the entirety of world society were inevitable in a relatively short time if major adjustments were not started immediately.

…click on the above link to read the rest…

Are You Ready for Collapse?

Are You Ready for Collapse?

MIT analyzed it and KPMG updated it: economic collapse is nigh.

Economy, global economy, economic crash, economic collapse, economy crash, economics, MIT, KPMG, Peter Isackson, world economy

© Skorzewiak / Shutterstock

A year before COVID-19 changed humanity’s view of the world and of its future, Charbonnier attempted to assess the merits of collapsology theory, focusing on the motivation of its promoters. He accurately identifies the marketplace for an increasingly popular genre of literary production, pointing out that “fear is an eminently political emotion, and the production of doomsday scenarios activates our belief systems, our attitudes toward the future, and our sense of good and evil on a very deep level.” These are clearly recipes for producing best-sellers.

In other words, it makes good business sense to predict catastrophic global collapse. Charbonnier accuses collapsologists of hoping to “reinstate” the “fervor and submission” associated with “millinarianist warnings” from the historical past. He calls the contributors a “community of believers,” but nevertheless distinguishes these fanatics from serious anthropologists such as Jared Diamond or philosophers such as Walter Benjamin, reasonable and reasoning thinkers who describe in scientific terms the process through which civilizations decline.Clearly, Charbonnier doesn’t believe a collapse is imminent, which doesn’t necessarily mean that he adheres to Steven Pinker’s style of optimism. Charbonnier wrote his article in 2019, offering it as his contribution to a debate that had come to life in French intellectual circles at that time. Following a never-ending pandemic, would he make the same judgment today?

…click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

MIT Computer Model Predicts Dramatic Drop In Quality Of Life Around 2020 And The “End Of Civilization” Around 2040

MIT Computer Model Predicts Dramatic Drop In Quality Of Life Around 2020 And The “End Of Civilization” Around 2040

Is humanity approaching a major turning point?  A computer model that was originally developed in 1973 by a group of scientists at MIT is warning that things are about to dramatically change.  If the computer predictions are accurate, our standard of living will start to decline dramatically around the year 2020, and we will witness the “end of civilization” around the year 2040.  Of course this is not the first time ominous predictions such as this have been made about our future.  For years, experts have been warning that we are heading for severe shortages of water, food and oil as our limited natural resources begin to run out.  For years, experts have been warning that our economic model is not sustainable and that we are heading for a historic collapse.  For years, experts have been warning about the alarming increase in seismic activity all over the planet and about the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction.  Society is crumbling all around us, and the elements for a “perfect storm” are definitely coming together.

So maybe this computer model is on to something.

The name of the computer program is “World One”, and it was originally created by Jay Forrester

The prediction came from a programme nicknamed World One, which was developed by a team of MIT researchers and processed by Australia’s largest computer.

It was originally devised by computer pioneer Jay Forrester, after he was tasked by the Club of Rome to develop a model of global sustainability.

However, the shocking result of the computer calculations showed that the level of pollution and population would cause a global collapse by 2040.

…click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

Is The EIA Overestimating The U.S. Shale Boom?

Is The EIA Overestimating The U.S. Shale Boom?

Permian

The American shale boom may be overstated by the U.S. Energy Department, according to a new MIT study that suggests the agency may be over-attributing a rise in shale drilling to technological advances.

“The EIA is assuming that productivity of individual wells will continue to rise as a result of improvements in technology,” MIT researcher Justin B. Montgomery told World Oil. “This compounds year after year, like interest, so the further out in the future the wells are drilled, the more that they are being overestimated.”

Instead, lukewarm oil prices have forced oil majors to drill only in easy-to-access areas, located mostly in the Eagle Ford and Permian basins in Texas, and the Bakken formation in North Dakota. This has led to an exaggerated increase in the number of active wells, and a hyperbolized narrative of growth in the shale industry, the study says.

“The same forecasting methods are used in other plays in the U.S., and the same dynamic is likely to be present,” Montgomery added.

Margaret Coleman, the Energy Information Administration’s chief of oil, gas and biofuels exploration and production analysis, said the “study raised valid points” and offered insights for more accurate analysis of domestic fossil fuel forecasting. Part of the blame can be attributed to an information gap in data available to the EIA team, she added.

Many shale wells lack key pieces of data tracked down by the MIT team, meaning EIA projections over-emphasized geological and capital assumptions as well as technological developments to estimate the shale industry’s growth. Of course, there have been some advances in drill head technology, mapping software, and hydraulic fracking, but that is just one part of the puzzle.

…click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

How an economic theory helped mire the United States in Vietnam

How an economic theory helped mire the United States in Vietnam

File 20170921 21037 1o4ru9z
Rostow, front right, visited Vietnam in 1961.
AP Photo/Fred Waters

Questions of how the U.S. got mired in the Vietnam War and whether it was ultimately winnable have fascinated historians for half a century – most recently in Ken Burns’ new 18-hour documentary.

A little-remembered aspect of the debacle is the important role played by a prominent economic historian named Walt Whitman Rostow, whose theories on economic development helped persuade Americans – and two presidents – that the fight in Vietnam was right and that we must prevail.

The Burns documentary, from what I have seen, does not dwell much on economics, my area of expertise. But this was an important part of why Americans were there.

Rostow’s rise

Rostow, left, looks over a map with Gen. Maxwell D. Taylor in 1961 ahead of their trip to Vietnam to observe and evaluate the political and military situation there and report back to President Kennedy. From his earliest days at the White House, Rostow urged more involvement in the Vietnam.   AP Photo/Bill Allen
Rostow came to prominence in the 1960s after his theories on economic development caught the eye of the Democratic Party and John F. Kennedy, who was campaigning for president.

In 1960, Rostow, then a professor at MIT, published an influential book called “The Stages of Economic Growth: A Non-Communist Manifesto.” The book describes how an economy transitions through five distinct stages of development, from basic (little use of technology, like much of central Africa and South Asia in the mid 20th century) to advanced (characterized by high levels of mass consumption, such as the U.S. or France).

…click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

They Have No Proof: MIT Professor Explains Why the Assad Gas Attack Was a Sham

They Have No Proof: MIT Professor Explains Why the Assad Gas Attack Was a Sham

syria-sarin-shell

The mainstream narrative surrounding the sarin gas attack in Syria simply doesn’t add up. Even if you assume that Assad is nothing but a vile monster who would have no problem with gassing his own people, the attack still doesn’t make sense. That’s because even monsters have a sense of self-preservation.

Just days before the attack, Secretary of State Rex Tillerson announced a reversal of a longstanding policy in Washington. He said that the US was no longer absolutely determined to oust Assad. America’s six year war against his regime was basically over. So why would Assad reignite a conflict with the world’s preeminent superpower with a chemical weapons attack? A conflict that I might add, would greatly reduce the chances of him remaining in power?

Assad is by no means a good guy. He’s not even an okay guy. He is definitely a despot who relies on violence to suppress the population. But he’s never shown any signs of being suicidal. Six years of fighting to maintain his rule proves that. What’s much more likely is that Assad is being set up.

Don’t believe our government’s claims about satellite photography catching Assad’s aircraft dropping the sarin. In fact, the little evidence that has been provided falls on its face once you take a closer look. That’s the determination of Theodore Postol, a physicist and professor at MIT, who reviewed documents released by the White House regarding the gas attack.

Postol said: “I have reviewed the [White House’s] document carefully, and I believe it can be shown, without doubt, that the document does not provide any evidence whatsoever that the US government has concrete knowledge that the government of Syria was the source of the chemical attack in Khan Sheikhoun, Syria at roughly 6am to 7am on 4 April, 2017.

…click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

CERN Discovers New Particle Called The FERIR

CERN Discovers New Particle Called The FERIR

This is an article by our friend Steve Keen, which was yanked by Forbes yesterday after just a few hours due to, according to Steve, their ‘parody policy’. I did some research and it turns out the Automatic Earth has no such policy. So I offered Steve to repost it here.

Steve Keen: CERN has just announced the discovery of a new particle, called the “FERIR”.

This is not a fundamental particle of matter like the Higgs Boson, but an invention of economists. CERN in this instance stands not for the famous particle accelerator straddling the French and Swiss borders, but for an economic research lab at MIT—whose initials are coincidentally the same as those of its far more famous cousin.

Despite its relative anonymity, MIT’s CERN is far more important than its physical namesake. The latter merely informs us about the fundamental nature of the universe. MIT’s CERN, on the other hand, shapes our lives today, because the discoveries it makes dramatically affect economic policy.

CERN, which in this case stands for “Crazy Economic Rationalizations for aNomalies”, has discovered many important sub-economic particles in the past, with its most famous discovery to date being the NAIRU, or “Non-Accelerating Inflation Rate of Unemployment”. Today’s newly discovered particle, the FERIR, or “Full Employment Real Interest Rate”, is the anti-particle of the NAIRU.

Its existence was first mooted some 30 months ago by Professor Larry Summers at the 2013 IMF Research Conference. The existence of the FERIR was confirmed just this week by CERN’s particle equilibrator, the DSGEin.

Asked why the discovery had occurred now, Professor Krugman explained that ever since the GFC (“Global Financial Crisis”), economists had been attempting to understand not only how the GFC happened, but also why its aftermath has been what Professor Summers characterized as “Secular Stagnation”.

…click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

Parliamentary group warns that global fossil fuels could peak in less than 10 years

Parliamentary group warns that global fossil fuels could peak in less than 10 years

British MPs launch landmark report on impending environmental ‘limits’ to economic growth

report commissioned on behalf of a cross-party group of British MPs authored by a former UK government advisor, the first of its kind, says that industrial civilisation is currently on track to experience “an eventual collapse of production and living standards” in the next few decades if business-as-usual continues.

The report published by the new All-Party Parliamentary Group (APPG) on Limits to Growth, which launched in the House of Commons on Tuesday evening, reviews the scientific merits of a controversial 1972 model by a team of MIT scientists, which forecasted a possible collapse of civilisation due to resource depletion.

The report launch at the House of Commons was addressed by Anders Wijkman, co-chair of the Club of Rome, which originally commissioned the MIT study.

At the time, the MIT team’s findings had been widely criticised in the media for being alarmist. To this day, it is often believed that the ‘limits to growth’ forecasts were dramatically wrong.

But the new report by the APPG on Limits to Growth, whose members consist of Conservative, Labour, Green and Scottish National Party members of parliament, reviews the scientific literature and finds that the original model remains surprisingly robust.

Authored by Professor Tim Jackson of the University of Surrey, who was Economics Commissioner on the UK government’s Sustainable Development Commission, and former Carbon Brief policy analyst Robin Webster, the report concludes that:

“There is unsettling evidence that society is tracking the ‘standard run’ of the original study — which leads ultimately to collapse. Detailed and recent analyses suggest that production peaks for some key resources may only be decades away.”

The 1972 team used their system dynamics model of the consumption of key planetary resources to explore a range of different scenarios.

…click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

Global Warming and the Irrelevance of Science

Global Warming and the Irrelevance of Science

In many fields, governments have a monopoly on the support of scientific research. Ideally, they support the science because they believe objective research to be valuable. Unfortunately, as anticipated by Eisenhower in his farewell speech from January 17, 1961 (the one that also warned of the military-industrial complex), “Partly because of the huge costs involved, a government contract becomes virtually a substitute for intellectual curiosity.” Under these circumstances, when the government wants a particular scientific outcome the ideal arrangement is vulnerable. However, as I hope to show, the problem is not simply bias.

Rather, the powers that be invent the narrative independently of the views of even cooperating scientists. It is, in this sense, that the science becomes irrelevant. This was certainly the case in the first half of the twentieth century, where we just have to look at Lysenkoism [1] in the former Soviet Union, Social Darwinism, and Eugenics throughout the western world [2], as well as, in the 1960s, the unfounded demonization of DDT [3]. Each phenomenon led to millions of deaths. And, in each case, the scientific community was essentially paralyzed, if not actually complicit.

Will climate catastrophism join this list? It appears so. The position of the policy world is clear. Here is President Obama’s constant refrain:

“Climate change is contributing to extreme weather, wildfires, and drought, and that rising temperatures can lead to more smog and more allergens in the air we breathe, meaning more kids are exposed to the triggers that can cause asthma attacks.”

…click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

Noam Chomsky: How America’s Way of Thinking About the World Naturally Produces Human Catastrophes

Noam Chomsky: How America’s Way of Thinking About the World Naturally Produces Human Catastrophes

The scholar talks about the seemingly innocuous elements of our socialization that promote one-world view over another.
 

Tavis: Noam Chomsky is, of course, internationally recognized as one of the world’s most critically engaged public intellectuals. The MIT professor of linguistics has long been an unapologetic critic of both American foreign policy and the ideological role of the mainstream media.

He joins us now from MIT to talk about the seemingly innocuous elements of our socialization that promote one-world view over another. Before we start our conversation, a clip from “The West Wing” that I think will set this conversation up quite nicely.


Tavis: Professor Chomsky, good to have you on this program. Thank you for your time, sir.

Noam Chomsky: Glad to be with you.

[Clip]

Tavis: I think that clip, again, sets up our conversation nicely. Let me just jump right in. Why all these years later is the west better than the east, the north better than the south, Europe better than Africa? These notions continue to persist. Tell me why.

Chomsky: There’s a generalization. We are better than they, whoever we are. So if you look through the whole history of China, one of the most ancient, most developed, civilizations which, in fact, was one of the centers of the world economy as late as the 18th century, China was better than everyone else.

…click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

 

From the Very Creation of the Internet, U.S. Spy Agencies Fought to Block Encryption

From the Very Creation of the Internet, U.S. Spy Agencies Fought to Block Encryption

American spy agencies have intentionally weakened digital security for many decades. This breaks the functionality of our computers and of the Internet. It reduces functionality and reduces security by – for example – creating backdoors that malicious hackers can get through.

The spy agencies have treated patriotic Americans who want to use encryption to protect their privacy as extremists … or even terrorists.

As Gizmodo’s Matt Novak points out, this attack started at the very birth of the internet:

In the 1970s, civilian researchers at places like IBM, Stanford and MIT were developing encryption to ensure that digital data sent between businesses, academics and private citizens couldn’t be intercepted and understood by a third party. This concerned folks inthe U.S. intelligence community who didn’t want to get locked out of potentially eavesdropping on anyone, regardless of their preferred communications method. Despite their most valiant efforts, agencies like the NSA ultimately lost out to commercial interests. But it wasn’t for lack of trying.

***

When the NSA got wind of the research developments at IBM, Stanford and MIT in the 1970s they scrambled to block publication of their early studies. When that didn’t work, the NSA sought to work with the civilian research community to develop the encryption. As Stowsky writes, “the agency struck a deal with IBM to develop a data encryption standard (DES) for commercial applications in return for full pre-publication review and right to regulate the length, and therefore the strength of the crypto algorithm.”

…click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

 

 

Olduvai IV: Courage
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Olduvai II: Exodus
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