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Commentary :: Environment
Apocalypse Soon
28 Aug 2005
Two big stories a couple of weeks ago demonstrate great threats approaching Massachusetts and the planet that will challenge progressives' ability to build a successful social movement while keeping our civilization intact. Humanity ignores these warning signs at our collective peril.
apocalypse copy.jpg
The first piece, in the Guardian UK [http://www.guardian.co.uk/international/story/0,3604,1546797,00.html], says that one of the "tipping points" that climatologists have noted will send global warming spiraling out of control has been reached. Siberia is melting. This is a serious problem since Western Siberia is mostly a giant peat bog the size of France and Germany combined. As its coating of permafrost goes away it will release huge amounts of methane and carbon dioxide in the atmosphere. Over the decades this process will likely take, the amount of carbon alone in the air will double worldwide--leading to a 10-25% increase in global warming.

The second article, in the Boston Globe [http://www.boston.com/business/markets/articles/2005/08/08/oil_soars_abo/], talks about the recent record-breaking hikes in the price of gasoline. The conceit is that terror threats in Saudi Arabia and the recent problems at U.S. refinaries are making oil markets jittery and creating the rate spike. The reality is more complicated and relates to the concept of "peak oil," or as progressive energy maven, Prof. Michael Klare of Hampshire College, puts it in a recent ZNet essay, the "twilight era of petroleum" [http://www.zmag.org/content/showarticle.cfm?ItemID=8454].

It seems that our entire global economy is built on the portable, though environmentally unsound, power provided by burning oil products. Unfortunately, we are soon to reach a plateau known as "peak oil"--meaning that our civilization will have used up 50 percent of the easily reachable oil reserves on Earth. Even as this milestone is reached, the oil demand in countries like the U.S. continues to accelerate. But oil companies have not spent much money tyring to find new oil deposits in the last couple of decades, partially because a contracted oil supply means that they can raise prices as they are doing now. However, many scientists, inside and outside the oil industry, are saying that there simply isn't much more oil to be found.

If that is the case, then northern states like Massachusetts are in big trouble. Not only due to a lack of sufficient public transportation, but also because the Commonwealth is cold much of the year, and people need affordable oil to heat our homes. And before the reader asks, natural gas prices are also on the rise, and we're reaching the "peak natural gas" plateau too.

One might think, "ok, no biggie, you just said global warming is on the increase; so Massachusetts will be like Florida soon. . .problem solved." But the problem is most assuredly not solved since global warming looks far more likely to shut down the warm water North Atlantic current as the oceans flood with cold meltwater from the diminishing polar caps. If that happens, our climate will get much colder. And we will be more dependent than ever on functioning heating systems in an era when thousands of families already go without adequate heat because of their inability to pay.

In addition, a recent check of Massachusetts agricultural statistics shows that the state produces only 13 percent of its own food supply. The higher that oil prices go, the more expensive food will become, since we bring most of our food in by truck.

Prof. Klare writes that the danger of "peak oil" is not so much a drastic drop in oil supply as a gradually increasing wave of oil-related crises over the coming decades--culminating, perhaps, in more wars for oil by big industrialized nations like the U.S.

But the key fact is this: if our society can't develop workable clean energy alternatives while there's still oil available to produce the huge amount of power needed to manufacture the solar arrays and batteries and windfarms that will be needed to survive a sustained energy crisis, then our very way of life is at stake.

Massachusetts could not possibly sustain its current population of 6 million people with its own resources even forgetting our need for heating oil for over half of each year. If our climate gets colder--or even, for the sake of argument, warmer--there is no guarantee that we could feed and clothe even one-fifth that number.

These coming crises need to be address now, if our civilization is to survive. MA Global Action will do our best to keep people up to date on these key issues of global warming and the energy crisis over the coming months, and to explore alternatives together with local communities--and other activists around the world.
See also:
http://www.massglobalaction.org/blog/serendipity/index.php?/archives/15-Apocalypse-Soon.html
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Re: Apocalypse Soon
28 Aug 2005
Hmmm
ok this is frikkin scary. $3.00 gas at the pump... who woulda thought?!!?...
Folks, you know if the Truckers should ever stop running food into the cities, the dumpsters will be empty, and folks will fight it out (we currently have no victory gardens or food canning programs large enougth to feed our folks in the projects and city suburbs)
We need to do something... but what?
Garden.
learn how to store food.
learn how to plant trees.
learn how to build shelters if you should have to travel suddenly out of the city.
learn how to purify water (to the best of your ability)
share info and ORGANISE AROUND THE EARTH...
do SOMETHING.. I mean, every little bit just might help, and if we have no tiny bit of struggle, resistance, or hope, we'll have nothing left to live for as humanbeings.

Peace
yer sistah
Re: Apocalypse Soon
28 Aug 2005
well...we better get this countercultural movement off the ground pretty soon...
Re: Apocalypse Soon
28 Aug 2005
lol sadly
yes, thats true!
pretty much almost too late, at least in NE if you like to be warm enougth to move yer feet in the street ;)
especially interesting in the guardian article
28 Aug 2005
The permafrost is likely to take many decades at least to thaw, so the methane locked within it will not be released into the atmosphere in one burst, said Stephen Sitch, a climate scientist at the Met Office's Hadley Centre in Exeter.

But calculations by Dr Sitch and his colleagues show that even if methane seeped from the permafrost over the next 100 years, it would add around 700m tonnes of carbon into the atmosphere each year, roughly the same amount that is released annually from the world's wetlands and agriculture.

It would effectively double atmospheric levels of the gas, leading to a 10% to 25% increase in global warming, he said.

Tony Juniper, director of Friends of the Earth, said the finding was a stark message to politicians to take concerted action on climate change. "We knew at some point we'd get these feedbacks happening that exacerbate global warming, but this could lead to a massive injection of greenhouse gases.

"If we don't take action very soon, we could unleash runaway global warming that will be beyond our control and it will lead to social, economic and environmental devastation worldwide," he said. "There's still time to take action, but not much.

"The assumption has been that we wouldn't see these kinds of changes until the world is a little warmer, but this suggests we're running out of time."
Re: Apocalypse Soon
28 Aug 2005
"Before Armageddon comes the Great Tribulation"

Your article has made me write this comment. How many times have we knocked on your doors to tell you the things necessary to save your life. How many times have we warned you of the impending dangers that lie ahead.

Jesus said that this generation would see all the signs but that many would ignore them. He said that people would be marrying and be given in marriage and that they would be carrying on life without taking any note of the sign of the times.

Many have argued that the calamities which are now occurring have happened since the beginning of time, however Jesus was clear and to the point when he said that this generation would see all the signs together. Famine, wars in one place after another, pestilence, love of the greater number cooling off, no natural affection and many other signs all of which would been seen by one entire generation.

Jesus also said that the road to destruction would be wide and spacious and that the road to salvation would be narrow and cramped. Many are waiting for Jesus to arrive to give them relief however because they are blinded by Satan the Devil they cannot see that Jesus is already here and doing the separating work, separating the sheep from the goats. They expect to see Jesus materialize but they fail to understand that no one will ever see Jesus again. That he is in the spirit realm and that he will not materialize but that his presence is now being felt by this generation.

I tell you this because like the householder, who, if he knew what hour the thief was coming, would have been awake and would have been waiting for the thief. You must be awake and take in the accurate knowledge of Jehovah, the true and living God or the thief, Satan the Devil, will take your life. Psalms 115: 2-8 states Jehovah's sovereignty. You worship to false Gods and idols made of wood and stone is valueless. They cannot speak, hear or answer you.

The great tribulation comes before Armageddon. Jesus referred to it in Matthew 24:19-22. The destruction of Jerusalem was so bad in 607 BC that the Jews who failed to heed the warning to 'get out of her when you see the disgusting thing,' perished. Millions died from starvation. It was so bad that the parents of young children had to hide them because the starving Jews actually became cannibals and yet Jesus said that the coming tribulation would be one that has never been seen on earth before and will never occur again. Not from the worlds beginning or even the flood of Noah's time would compare.

Many millions will die in this tribulation because 'the love of the greater number has cooled off' and you will resort to your own form of cannibalism trying to stock up supplies for yourselves but it will do no good. Gold and silver will be thrown into the street as valueless (Zephaniah 1: 17-18). Only those calling upon the name of 'The True and Living God, Jehovah' will be saved. But how can you call upon the name of God when you do not know Him.

Do you want to live in true peace and security? Then go here and the next time a Jehovah's Witness knocks on your door ask for information that will save your life.

http://www.watchtower.org/library/dg/index.htm
Re: Apocalypse Soon
28 Aug 2005
Keep an eye on the avian flu spreading out of Asia too. If that bug mutates to pass from person to person, it will hit us a lot sooner than the direst effects of global warming will. And it will hit the global population hard.
Re: Apocalypse Soon
28 Aug 2005
Actually the problem is in the people who think they care - U are all middle class and it is the middle class that is the problem - DISAPPEAR! ex.

by Amatul
frikkin scary. $3.00 gas at the pump... if the Truckers should ever stop running food into the cities, the dumpsters will be empty, and folks will fight it out (we currently have no victory gardens or food canning programs large enougth to feed our folks.. We need to do something... but what? reply - What yuo should be thinking is how to stop your government - but you only care aboput yourself

by sw ...we better get this countercultural movement off the ground pretty soon... reply - Sick o's - there never was coounterculture - just USA hedonists - you better arm yourself and fight!

by amatul

pretty much almost [ !!!] too late, at least in NE if you like to be warm enougth to move yer feet in the street ;) reply -All self oriented not taking responsibility !!!

"If we don't take action very soon, we could unleash runaway global warming that will be beyond our control and it will lead to social, economic and environmental devastation worldwide," he said. "There's still time to take action, but not much.

Reply - Bull shite - time ran out 25 year ago! - And the left and alternatives have done a much nbetter job of covering up and lying than Bush boy could ever have imagiuned doing...

by Bill Griffin

"Before Armageddon comes the Great Tribulation"

Your article has made me write this comment. How many times have we knocked on your doors to tell you the things necessary to save your life. How many times have we warned you of the impending dangers that lie ahead.

Jesus said that this generation would see all the signs but that many would ignore them. He said that people would be marrying and be given in marriage and that they would be carrying on life without taking any note of the sign of the times.

Many have argued that the calamities which are now occurring have happened since the beginning of time, however Jesus was clear and to the point when he said that this generation would see all the signs together. Famine, wars in one place after another, pestilence, love of the greater number cooling off, no natural affection and many other signs all of which would been seen by one entire generation.

Jesus also said that the road to destruction would be wide and spacious and that the road to salvation would be narrow and cramped. Many are waiting for Jesus to arrive to give them relief however because they are blinded by Satan the Devil they cannot see that Jesus is already here and doing the separating work, separating the sheep from the goats. They expect to see Jesus materialize but they fail to understand that no one will ever see Jesus again. That he is in the spirit realm and that he will not materialize but that his presence is now being felt by this generation.
You must be awake and take in the accurate knowledge of Jehovah, the true and living God or the thief, Satan the Devil, will take your life. . You worship to false Gods and idols made of wood and stone is valueless. They cannot speak, hear or answer you.

Many millions will die in this tribulation because 'the love of the greater number has cooled off' and you will resort to your own form of cannibalism ...how can you call upon the name of God when you do not know Him.

Reply - Yep the Witnesses had it right - but God only helps those who help themselves (their communities actually) and the JWs have done a poor job there...


by Anon
Anon (unverified) 28 Aug 2005
Keep an eye on the avian flu spreading out of Asia too. If that bug mutates to pass from person to person, it will hit us a lot sooner than the direst effects of global warming will. And it will hit the global population hard - REPLY = SORRY - BUT MORE MIDDLE CLASS - "SAVE YOURSELF" CRAP - THE RICH CAN SURVIVE ANYTHIONG EVEN THE LOSS OF THE ATMOSPHERE - YOU FOOLS - YOU HAVE TO FIGHT A LOSING BATTLE - NOT TO SVE YOURSELF - BUT TO KEEP THE EVIL ONES (MOST PEOPLE IN THE usA AND THE RICH EVERYWHERE FROM ENJOYING THEIR VICTORY...
Re: Apocalypse Soon
28 Aug 2005
Victory gardens are great, until the guys who don't have one see yours.

It will be much worse than you could even immagine. But still, compared to the fait you chose for your palestinian neighbors, at least YOU got a change in hell.
Re: Apocalypse Soon
29 Aug 2005
"A Most Significant Sign"

Unfortunately in my haste I left out a very important sign. The Apostles were most interested when the end of the system would come and what the signs would be. Matthew 24 goes into great detail about the signs that would occur in one generation, however Matthew 24: 14 says "And this good news of the kingdom will be preached in all the inhabited earth for a witness to all the nations; and then the end will come."

Jehovah's Witnesses are doing just that. Bringing accurate information to all the inhabited earth about Jehovah's incoming Kingdom. Every corner of the earth is being filled with the Knowledge of Jehovah.

http://www.watchtower.org/library/dg/article_09.htm
Re: Apocalypse Soon
29 Aug 2005
The Jehovah's Witnesses have resorted to evangelizing on IMC? Too many doors get slammed in your face? HILARIOUS!
Apocalypse NOW was a long movie
29 Aug 2005
I can't wait for "The End Times", as they been trade-marked, because all the whiners, do-dandies, and dingle holes will all not know what to do without their do-hickies and whirling, loud gadgets.
Hell, this isn't even my computer! I don't own one. I think when we learn to go without things like electricity, food, heat, etc. we can be like some other people in this world.
And all of these wretched machines will be worthless.
Re: Apocalypse Soon
30 Aug 2005
Disclaimer: I mean all this is respect, and I have no intention of being condescending.

Yes, global warming is rather frightening as is the avian flu... But what can we do about a flu that could mutate and spread this way? could you and I simply amble over the sea and eradicate the spread... no, so lets forget worrying about that, because whats the point of worrying about something you haven't any control of. and for once, the jahovah man was right- i can respect him for that. what will worrying about this accomplish? why worry about personal death? we all die... we're all recycled. lets worry about other people suffering and trying to end something that we may actually be able to aleviate... like global warming.

what.... what can we do about global warming? give up and say it's to big... it's too late? fuck that.

the united states is responsible for most of it, that is abundantly clear... and it is mostly because of oil consumption- correct? the problem is not that we don't have alternatives, because those have been developed, like hydrogen cars, wind power, biodeisels... so why aren't we doing anything with it? well, the problem is that the technology has become privitized... and, quite frankly, the companties that have bought it out are going to milk petroleum for all that it's worth until the alternative energies are in high enough demand that they can sell them for the highest price possible- because unlike petroleum- they are efficient and they wont make as much money if they release them now....
so what im saying is, peak might have hit. youre right. however, in winter's to come we aren't going to freeze to death and starve because there is alternative to oil, and there is none left... we are going to be cold and starving because the companies have privitized the technology and are selling it at ridiculous prices. therefor, transport companies will go out of bussiness because they wont be able to afford the new technology- (they spent all their money on oil), and the gas companies will expand, (once again), to become transport companies... i could keep going... but im sure i've bored the hell out of you already.
my final point is: get our feet in the street is right... but not prostesting. get our feet in the street and just talk to people. if we have true ultimate love, then we have understanding... which means we cannot judge people for beliving something differnt (even if they are a capitalist or a communist or an anarchist... life is more important that ideology), all we can do is tell them we love them and want to help. they will be much more likely to listen if we're not telling them to fuck off and their way of life is sinful or wrong... gently explaining things and the way you think works a lot better... write a little pamphlet referring people to work shops on bio- deisels. fuck it, write a small booklet on where to find the parts and maybe shops that will make these engines. form a co-op that could crack the code of trying to make hydrogen vehicles and form you're own company. or if they dont want to modify their car, tell people to only buy citgo gas, it goes to venezuelan social programs (it's nationalized oil). it's cheaper and helping the poor, who can deny that.

... right now is the time, people are beginning to realize that they can't afford this shit forever, we just haveto make the services and the information known... we can't act helpless and we cannot say the apocalypse is coming- if we honestly try to do something.

alright my rant is done.
We (Americans) Have Been Sleepwalking Too Long.
30 Aug 2005
Alternative energy has been around for 30 years. It works. It's clean. It's cheap. Yet, for the average American? They think it doesn't work. Why? Disinformed and disengaged. Until WE wake up? Expect gas prices to soar. And Americans to freeze this winter.
Blame the government. (WE are the government!)
I do blame Bush and his oil buddies for the skyrocketing cost of gas. I also blame everyone who drives SUV's and gas hog automobiles.
The Hurricane
31 Aug 2005
I have nothing but sympathy and compassion for those who are being affected by the hurricane down south, that is why I present this with the utmost seriousness.....

A study by an MIT researcher says that Hurricanes are going to get worse and worse due to Global Warming.

http://web.mit.edu/newsoffice/2005/hurricanes.html

"My results suggest that future warming may lead to an upward trend in [hurricanes'] destructive potential, and--taking into account an increasing coastal population--a substantial increase in hurricane-related losses in the 21st century," reports Kerry Emanuel in a paper appearing in the July 31 online edition of the journal Nature.

We are too dependant on Oil for Energy. We need to put our best minds at work and put huge resources into creating sustainable and renewable energy resources and not use our money to fuel endless war. If we could create a Manhattan Profject to invent the bomb why can't we have a project to cure us from oil addiction?
Our Best Mind already worked on this
02 Sep 2005
"We" created a Manhattan Project only because there was a crisis atmosphere in a time of literal world war, The destruction it wrought was a small but highly significant portion of the total destruction in that conflagration, which for some strange reason we insist on glorifying. It may well take a similar crisis mentality to fully mobilize to combat global warming. No one knows for certain what the consequences in detail may be but they're likely to be very grave indeed. Unfortunately our Cassandra has apparantly missed the point of all this entirely. "The key fact is this: if our society can't develop workable clean energy alternatives... to produce the huge amount of power needed ... to survive a sustained energy crisis, THEN OUR WAY OF LIFE IS AT STAKE." The "key fact" is: that "our way of life" got us in this predicament in the first place and threatens to continually do so as long as it is sustained by whatever energy sources. The question we might better be asking is not how to preserve a way of life that results in destructive Manhattan Projects or decadent SUVs but whether such a "way of life" is worth preserving, or parts thereof. If everyone stopped driving a polluting car and reduced their endless excess consumption there would be no crisis. This is not a crisis of civilization, this is a crisis of overconsumption. You don't have to "hit the streets" -certainly not to "save our way of life"- you need to stop your own personal overconsumption and waste generation. Jesus can't do it for you and neither can the oil companies. So don't expect religious crackpots or robber barons to solve the crisis. A plan of survival was actually prepared righr here in Massachusetts that anticipated this crisis over 150 years ago. A saviour named Thoreau outlined the answers in a better bible called 'Walden' and several other scriptures. Ignore him at your own peril.
good ideas, good hearts
03 Sep 2005
be of good cheer
there are some fine ideas up in here
first off, YES, when the neighbors who DONT have a victory
garden but DO have a gun see yours, they might flip out and come kill you for your food - OR
if you SPEAK with your neighbors on a regular basis (I have potlucks with em) then you might become HUMAN BEINGS to your neighbors,
and HELP THEM PLANT THEIR OWN GARDENS/ build their own BIODIESEL BUSSES.

Sharing. its a concept....
we need to really try to know we are all sharing
the breath of life, and the chance of death.
its simple in the end of days -
the rich dont really wanna live in a bunker. sure,
the CAN and they WILL, but... do they WANNA?

therefore, the tech will come. they hackers will have to steal it, i guess. whos good at stealing ideas and makeing diagrams... start joining biodiesel and solar car clubs folks, its gonna be a cold winter too. but, how did folks survive in the =old days? lets read up this fall, yeah - I still have Walden kicking around too man...allong with "On Civil Disobedience" a quite good read!
peace.
Go Solar. Buy Hybreds. Hope For Impeachment.
04 Sep 2005
Sun power is cheap and clean. Let me show you...
http://www.madeen.com/photos_and_designs.htm
I lived in Northern Indiana for 30 years. (Next to the Michigan State line. Got the lake snow every year.) A solar home was built in 1973. Chesterton, Indiana. It sold solar kits for homes. Many people out there have went to solar. Passive heats in the winter. And cools the home in the summer.
I moved out here in 88. Always used natural gas for heating. Now, fuel oil came into play. Since I rent. I'll make sure utilities are included.
If you own a home. Spend $5,000.00 on a kit for your home. It's worth it!
(There is a solar store in Holliston, MA. It sells home kits.)
As for the gas crisis. Bush blew a chance to get gas at "dirt" prices from President Chavez, of Venezuela. That would have stopped the con, from the oil companies. (And gas stations...)

Think about the starving and dead trapped in their attics...
Those people are Americans. Anyone feel ashamed for the lack of help? Considering, the United States is supposed to be the best? (Weren't we fed that all of our lives?...)

I'll be at the September 24th march.
what do we do?
06 Sep 2005
yah, all this is happening. and its bad. and i agree with those that say that alternative energy has been here a LONG time, and that we should start USING it, and also with those(amatul mostly) who say we hafta get with our neighbors and make a better future for ourselves.

There are lots and lots of resoucres for learning how to live in a way that does not contribute to these sort of things- its hard to do, for definite sure, and skyrocketting property values make it nigh impossible to do things like garden and go solar. I have killed several of my first attempts to grow things with my very un-green thumbs. . . . .but! i keep trying. . . .

I have found TONS of stuff on this one guy's anti-consumerism website- its FULL of do it yourself gardening and solar and building and tree growing and transportation ideas- well over a hundred links to essays and instructions- the guy's a TOTAL altruist and puts it all up for FREE:
http://www.verdant.net

check it out-

also there's a boston group converting cars to biodeisel and grease. . . . . they're in JP:
http://www.greengreasemonkey.org

i think folks started doing these things a little in the seventies when the first energy crisis hit-- alot of their organizations got corrupted, shut down, or co-opted by corporate interests and watered down wishy-washy-ness-- but some organizations that come to mind are food co-ops, community bakeries, the Farm and its organizations(Plenty and Habitat for Humanity, which branched off later), and lots and lots and LOTS of solar and wind companies. . . . . not to mention Scott and Helen Nearing, Fukuwoka and the One Straw Revolution, Ralph Borsodi and the School of Simple Living, and Joe Dominguez with his financial Voluntary Simplicity ideas. . ... alot of these things have fallen into the hands of upper class hobbyists who (often unknowingly) practice classism and are Real Goods buffs. . . . but it does NOT have to be that way! For instance, have a look at this DIY solar generator:
http://www.rain.org/~philfear/how2solar.html

here's a poem i found in a cookbook put out by a feminist vegetarian resteraunt collective that teaches spinning, weaving, foraging, cooking, and changing the world:
My Mother Says we're Health Nuts
You're happy if you're healthy, she keeps saying, so we eat sunflower seeds and do push-ups and headstands together. . .you should taste our salads. We can't grow much in our apartment, but we have onions and radishes and cilantro in our window boxes and on the fire escape"
"My mother and I are growing strong"- Inez Maury; New Seed Press
P.S.
06 Sep 2005
(hey mister/missus jehovah's witness- you should try some-a this stuff too, while yer at it! You believe in God right? Well, God gave ya soil, and seeds, and sunlight-- PLant a garden of plants in Creation, and run your house off God's own sunlight! What could it hurt?? almost EVERYONE in the bible, pretty much, was a farmer or a shepard. . . . .. even jesus' speeches are full of references to seeds and sheep-- try it!)
Re: Apocalypse Soon
31 May 2006
online directory main
depression
03 Jun 2006
This is very interesting site...