Posts Tagged ‘climate change’
Climate policy remains deplorable
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PHOTO: Prime Minister Stephen Harper.
The government of Canada has used strong-arm tactics to shut down two parody websites criticizing Canada’s poor environmental policy, taking down 4500 other websites in the process.
The two websites, “enviro-canada.ca” and “ec-gc.ca”, are “directly connected to a hoax which misleads people into believing that the Government of Canada will take certain actions in relation to environmental matters,” wrote Mike Landreville from Environment Canada in an email to the German Internet Service Provider (ISP) Serverloft. “We trust you appreciate the importance of avoiding confusion among the public concerning Canadian governmental affairs and that you will assist us in preventing this hoax from spreading further.”
In a remarkable overstepping of bounds, Landreville also asked the ISP to “make every effort to prevent any further attempts concerning other environment-related domains (enviro, ec-gc, etc.) originating from your servers.”
In response to Environment Canada’s request, Serverloft immediately turned off a whole block of IP addresses, knocking out more than 4500 websites that had nothing to do with the parody sites or the activists who created them. Serverloft was shown no warrant, and never called the web hosting company about the shutdown.
“We are sorry to see that the Canadian government will not ‘take certain actions’ that could help stave off catastrophic climate change,” said Mike Bonanno of The Yes Men, one of the groups that performed the “sophisticated hoax” two weeks ago that involved the fake sites. “And we are also sorry to see that they don’t care so much for free speech.”
“Surely the Canadian government has better things to do than shut down thousands of websites, beg the US for photo opps, and berate NGOs for things they haven’t done,” said Andy Bichlbaum of The Yes Men. “They could instead figure out reasonable ways of responding to their growing legion of critics.”
The websites that Canada shut down were part of an elaborate “identity correction” carried out by anonymous Canadian activists, the Climate Debt Agents of Action Aid, and The Yes Men. They used press releases and fake websites to announce that Canada would adopt science-based emission targets – reducing emissions by 40% over 1990 levels by 2020 and 80% by 2050 – and would pay the countries most impacted by climate change a proportional amount of the $600 billion total recommended by the United Nations to mitigate and adapt to climate change. They even used a replica of the UN conference center podium to show “Uganda” reacting with glee to the plan, before seeing their “tragic hopes” dashed.
Canada had prepared for just such an eventuality by creating a so-called “Climate Change War Room,” a special office tasked with delivering rapid-response messaging to any negative media coverage around Canada’s role at the Copenhagen climate change negotiations. Despite these efforts, last week’s flurry of parody announcements, which the prime minister’s office called a “childish prank,” received enormous media attention across Canada and caused at least two embarrassing media moments for Canadian high officials.
Canada has been heavily criticized for its increasingly deplorable climate policy, and this year in Copenhagen was awarded the “Colossal Fossil” prize for worst behaviour in the COP-15 negotiations. The group giving the award, the Climate Action Network, is a global coalition of more than 500 organizations working on climate change.
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by Lauren Carroll Harris, Copenhagen
PHOTO: The TSX is Canada’s largest stock exchange.
“Can a finite Earth support an infinite project? The thesis of capitalism, infinite development, is a destructive pattern, let’s face it. How long are we going to tolerate the current international economic order and prevailing market mechanisms? How long are we going to allow huge epidemics like HIV/AIDS to ravage entire populations? How long are we going to allow the hungry to not eat or to be able to feed their own children? How long are we going to allow millions of children to die from curable diseases? How long will we allow armed conflicts to massacre millions of innocent human beings in order for the powerful to seize the resources of other peoples?”
— Venezuela’s President Hugo Chavez, speaking at COP15, December 16, 2009
All these issues have been forced onto the global political agenda — for some time at least. Before Copenhagen, it was the global financial meltdown that put the word “capitalism” back into the everyday vocabulary.
Now in Copenhagen, many are explicitly discussing the issue of how to remove the causes of climate change — the capitalist system and its structurally unequal ownership and distribution of natural resources and wealth — root and branch.
In the words of one Klimaforum09 participant: “We need to think strategically about how to build a movement that can take power from a system that is completely unable to solve this crisis, a world that values its economic system over its ecosystem. We need to build a movement and a system that can give us all the things that they [the government leaders at COP15] can never give us.”
Denmark ‘worst possible host’
A session titled “Capitalism and the Climate Crisis: Left Alternatives” featured a range of left and socialist activists. Per Clausen of Denmark’s Red-Green Alliance criticised his government’s use of carbon offsets to falsely heighten its carbon emissions-reduction targets.
He said that emissions must be reduced in a real sense, “not drowned in a sea of quotas”, and that despite Denmark’s reputation as a “green” country, it “has proven itself to be the worst possible host of the climate summit. First, [Denmark] backtracks on the demand for a legally binding agreement. Second, [Denmark] has sold out on the demand that rich countries must reduce emissions by between 55 and 40% by 2020″.
Marisa Matias, a member of parliament for Portugal’s Left Bloc, criticised how the mainstream has adopted the language of the environment movement, but in a diluted manner, stripped of all meaning and divorced from a rigorous examination of the crisis’ real problems, and consequently, the real solutions.
“Environmental crises are viewed as technical, as externalities — ‘there’s a problem in the water, in the soil, in the air’ — and separated from their social origins”, Matias said. “Over the last two decades, [the words] ‘sustainable development’ have been integrated into the discourse of every party, every government, but they have an empty significance.
“We must see environmental problems in the realms of social and distribution problems, and that means ecological and social justice as the solution. It makes no sense to talk about nature without talking about society and who has control over natural resources.”
The “Left Alternatives” panel also included Ian Terry, a former Vestas employee and member of the British Socialist Workers’ Party. Vestas is a Danish wind-turbine manufacturer that recently sacked hundreds of staff at a turbine factory on Britain’s Isle of Wight.
Terry explained the signficance of the Vestas workers’ campaign to save their jobs, and how it offered unique opportunities to make links between the erosion of the environment and workers’ rights.
“We were told that our jobs were secure, the industry was booming and we wouldn’t be worrying about the recession. Three weeks later they told us we were all going to lose our jobs. At the same time [Britain’s Labour government] was claiming to be creating 400,000 green jobs. So we occupied our factory.
“What I experienced [during the factory occupation] was amazing, a coming together of environmentalists, socialists, trade unionists and the local community. And for me it solidifies the argument that capitalism is the same problem — for the working-class movement and for the environment movement.
“Although we didn’t actually save our jobs, the media reported quite kindly and widely. It wasn’t just the left media, everyone picked it up because it was an environmental issue … What we’re doing now is working on the million green jobs campaign. We’ve set out where we can create jobs in green energy, the insulation of houses and public transport.
“There are many people in the UK right now who are jobless. We’ve been able to build pressure, talk in workplaces, in factories that are closing with people about the links between capitalism and the climate. The workers movement must link up with the environment movement.
“After `The Wave’ [a 50 000-strong demonstration in London on December 5] and after Copenhagen, quite clearly there are a lot of people coming together [to demand action to stop climate change]”, he said.
“It’s not an abstract issue — we’ve had thousands of people on the streets. We’re arguing for a socially just future, not just a future where we survive. That’s where the organised left has got to play a part [in relating to the broader environmental movement]. The green jobs campaign does [make those links] by uniting trade unionists and environmentalists. We strengthen each other.”
Another campaigner involved in the British Workers’ Climate Action group pointed out that so-called “green companies” will, by their nature, be more interested in capitalising on a growing market opportunites and prioritising profit over the environment and their workers’ rights — for Vestas, “wind turbines are just another commodity”.
Market solutions rejected
Many conference participants labelled efforts to impose market solutions — such as offsetting carbon emissions in the first world with “carbon reducing” projects in the Third World that have been shown to trample on the rights of labourers — as a re-colonisation of the global South.
Another activist pointed out that in a recent study, two-thirds of the UN sponsored Clean Development Mechanism offset projects in Europe failed to reduce carbon emissions, and some even increased emissions.
However, carbon trading continues to be advocated as a solution to climate change by pro-business governments. The carbon market is worth US$1.2 trillion a year, according to British economist Nicholas Stern.
Instead of market-friendly solutions offered by the richest countries, which are refusing to equally redistribute wealth and resources, there was a consensus that genuine grassroots democracy could restore capitalism’s chronic ecological and social imbalance.
Roberto Perez, a Cuban biologist and activist, spoke to Green Left Weekly about some of the ways in which Cuba has begun to mend the ecological rift while developing the living standards of its citizens. Having a collective rather than a private, market-based approach to agriculture has built a sense of community among people, and gone a long way to ensure the country’s secure access to food.
“Our urban agriculture receives a lot of support from the local and central government. In 1990, when there was no food, it took us a while to realise that the most reliable way to get food was to grow it ourselves”, Perez explained.
“Not many people reacted like that, they were thinking that something might come, that the market will come up with something magical. The market hasn’t come up with any solutions in Africa. So the government said, ‘let’s organise this’.
“Government support came in the form of giving unused and underused land for agriculture, training more than 12,000 technicians and farmers, funding and the creation of 3000 agricultural clubs for children. Because education in Cuba is free, studying permaculture is free.
“Some of the lessons learned include the importance of equal distribution and access to land. In Cuba, most [industrial] property ownership is collective. We prefer to give access to the land and to production to the people everywhere — small scale, large scale. There was the political will and support, the Cuban government didn’t have much money, but it organised a lot.
“Now we have small farms on workplaces that provide lunch for their workforce. We have 300,000 home plots of land. And we have the urban collective gardens.
“Many people think that as consumers, they have the power to choose. But what do consumers choose? What is in the supermarket. You can choose between brands A, B and C. But out of that, what can you choose? If you grow your own food as a society, that’s power. There are many people who don’t want people to recover that power”, Perez pointed out.
Perez said he believes this model of sustainable growth can be replicated in other poor countries. “Cuba shows the scale you can do this on. [Our socialist, sustainable agricultural and social system] is not marginal, it’s not an eccentricity. All the countries that are facing these crises can do this. We found a way. It’s not perfect. We are growing, planting the future. The past is fossil fuels, the past is inequality.”
The official Copenhagen process has backfired — rather than being a show of global leaders’ political resolve, the talks ceaselessly teetered on collapse. A leaked UN report shows that the deal on offer [in the finals day of the talks] would lead to a disastrous temperature increase of three degrees Celsius.
On this final day of negotiations, the absence of an agreement that legally binds developed countries to warming of two degrees Celsius or less has rendered hollow the hardline rhetoric of leaders like US President Barack Obama, British Labour Prime Minister Gordon Brown and Australian ALP Prime Minister Kevin Rudd.
These leaders’ assertion that their actions and emissions pale in significance to those of large developing nations like China and India appears more withered, pathetic and inexcusable than ever before.
Copenhagen has revealed that the power of the rich — the power of the few — is shakier than it seems, that the planet and its people will not accept further inaction, and that the climate justice movement is increasingly prepared to step in where global leaders have failed.
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by Dr. John Singh
What happens when humans continue to pursue a capitalist economic system, that destroys vital oxygen-producing organisms from phytoplankton, to trees in fragile rainforest ecosystems? That is an easy one, yeh. The result would be a decreasing supply of oxygen in Earth’s atmosphere, in relationship to other toxic gases. The greed-driven Petroleum-based economies of the Western World has put humanity and other life much closer to the brink, than what “mainstream” environmental groups would care to admit.
The Petroleum-based economies carry the cost of starving the Earth of vital oxygen, eventually making our planet’s inhospitable to humans, and other biological organisms. How do you like the thought of a future of dead oceans, and humans having to rely on oxygen machines that are supplied by the same group of corporations which are responsible for destroying Earth’s oxygen supply in the first place? But, after all, isn’t that what our capitalist system is all about? That is, they create layers of exploitation on top of exploitation in pursuit of avarice, and insatiable commercial profit, and ego-driven power?
The National Geographic documents the following on the production of vitally need oxygen on our planet.
|In the process of photosynthesis, phytoplankton release oxygen into the water. Half of the world’s oxygen is produced via phytoplankton photosynthesis. The other half is produced via photosynthesis on land by trees, shrubs, grasses, and other plants. LINK|
The New Scientist magazine further observes that:
|As the Earth’s oceans warm, the masses of tiny plants growing at their surface is declining, say U.S. researchers. Their results show that the productivity of global oceans is tightly linked to climate change and has steadily decreased between 1999 and 2004.
The team was led by Michael Behrenfeld, at Oregon State University, U.S., and used a sensor on NASA’s SeaWiFS satellite to measure different shades of green in the ocean allowed them to watch how chlorophyll in the oceans ebbed and flowed over the past 10 years. They looked at how these changes fitted changes in ocean temperatures and the predictions of computer models.
Their research, published in Nature, revealed two phases. Between 1997 and 1998, the amount of phytoplankton in the seas rose. At this time, the oceans were cooling after the strongest ever El Niño, which had warmed ocean temperatures.
From 1999 to 2004, there was a general warming of the oceans and, the images from space revealed, a persistent decrease in phytoplankton. In some regions, the drops in ocean productivity were often over 30%. Globally, the reductions meant that, between 1999 and 2004, about 190 million tonnes of carbon per year were not absorbed by the tiny plants and converted into organic matter. After 2004, there was a small upturn in productivity. LINK
Alex Collier, an alleged contactee of alleged Ethical Extraterrestrials suggests that our planet Earth is at a near critical Oxygen level.
Do you think that maintaining the capitalist system is worth the price of a prospective future of suffocation on our planet Earth’s surface? The depletion of the oxygen supply [CONTINUED… see comment below]
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by Thahoketoteh of Kanekota
The truth about the weather phenomena here on the 3rd stone from the sun has been obfuscated by the controllers of the mind. The biggest story on earth in 3600 years has been intentionally withheld from the people. AOL has recently released photos and a story about “Planet X” because soon everyone on earth will see the second sun and her planets coming in the sky, so they will no longer to be able to spin it for their advantage.
It is our binary twin and is where we come from.
The earth is now in a daily wobble, aligning her north pole first to “Planet X” and then to the sun, this is what is causing most of the weather abnormalities. Al Gore and his elite brethren have been feeding everyone a line of bull with the global warming scam. They show themselves as the serpents that they are. Soon everyone on earth will see the twin coming fast. A few years ago the privately owned NASA reportedly installed a multi million dollar telescope at the south pole (SPT), as it is the only place that this can be seen until the twin comes above the ecliptic plane. There have been a few champions for humanity who have gotten actual photos from the SPT and published them on the web.
The planets in our solar system will all change their orbits and alignments in the next few years, as they always do on this “natural cycle”. There will be a pole shift here on earth and many will not survive the cataclysm. This elite-driven “war on terror” was designed to continue their myth for the next 3600 years after the shift. They really do want to start a nuclear war or “Armageddon”, so that when the dust settles and the waters recede, they can blame the cataclysm on man, propagate a new myth and rule for the next 3600 years.
They have allegedly been building underground cities all across the globe for awhile now. They will try to secure all the guns and will come out and try to take control again.
The significance of this shift, is beyond their control as the minds of the people are also going through an evolution or “shift” to higher consciousness. We are evolving as a species on this shift. The Mayans call this the fifth sun and say it is the ethereal sun.
We are grateful to people who have tried to get this information out to the people in the last few years. I like this video as it’s creators are obviously schooled in astronomy and have done the math, VIDEO LINK
If you would like more information you can find it on the web. I have saved much information in my YouTube file, LINK under favourites, and I suggest you check out as much as you can.
Unity, Strength, Peace.
by Thahoketoteh of Kanekota
The global climate change argument, that the ‘Globalists’ are trying to promote through their propaganda dept., suggest that the current increase in temp. and weather severity is man-made. I suggest the more important issue of man-made pollutants of this Earth mother, is the most important topic to discuss. The species depletion is definitely man-made. The diseases like cancer and all the other three-letter “disorders” that have been popping up are all pollution related.
The entire solar system is going through regular cyclical changes right now. So when we are talking about man-made causes let us concentrate on actual man-made problems, like polluting our mother earth and killing 30% of the species.
The CBC did a documentary on the poisoning of the waters last year and they showed clearly what causes cancer. They investigated the last known Beluga whales to live in the St. Lawrence river region and found them to be riddled with the same cancerous tumours that humans are suffering from. They concluded it was the poisons that have been allowed to be dumped into the Great Lakes watershed. That this was driven by the madness of “the owista disease” that everyone suffers from now, was not mentioned in their documentary.
Since many of you reading this subscribe to the man-made idea of economy, let us follow the money trail. To tackle the real man-made changes, one must first root out the cause of the problem. The men who have profited from the crime of poisoning the ecosystem are the ones who have financed it. Their secret parliament is not that populated however their money resources are endless. They have made themselves unbelievably rich, at the expense of 30% of the species. With the Athabasca tar-sands project, Canada now takes the top spot on the list of “polluting countries“ worldwide.
Our job as humans is to ensure the survival of all of our earth family. Let us start to tackle the real problem with as much zeal as the hoax, these same money-men are selling the people. These people have created the mess and they must now pay the money back, to clean it up. Instead of continuing at an accelerated rate of poisoning the earth family , they should be made to pay all that money back that they have reaped from the destruction of the ecosystem. Then they will owe more than they have and will finally know what the final outcome of the “owista” disease is.
Then, their “not-so secret” meetings, will be about the famine and death of them, instead of us. War is their favourite tactic of mind control. The word Government is from the Greek “gobernado” (to control) and “mente” (the mind). That is why they cannot deal properly with us, as our people understand the power of the mind. Nobody can tell you what to think. Not only do you have the right, it is your responsibility to listen to everyone and then make up your own mind.
The fairy tale of the “pied piper of Hamelin” comes to mind. The ruling elite in that story, had to finally deal with the fact that they lost their children because they did not want to pay the piper. The same is true of the current ruling elite with their own children. They will lose their children along with all of the other children, if they continue on this bad path. The moral of that fairy tale is “you have to pay the piper”.
With unity of mind through the natural law, comes great strength.
About the writer:
Thahoketoteh of Kanekota can be contacted via his MySpace.com webpages. LINK
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by Horace R. Carby-Samuels
We need to take a few reflective pauses, as we go about our lives in the industrialized world. That will allow us to consider from whence came the outputs on which we draw. Take, for example, when we get up in the morning. It is unlikely that we will normally give a second thought to how many different skills, how many different people, how many different locations, or how many different materials were co-ordinated and brought together so as to enable us to acquire the clothes (if any) that we wore to sleep; the bed in which we slept; the linen on that bed; and the residence or the place of rest where we find ourselves. Indeed, the simplest appearing man-made feature in our close environment, is not simple at all. A reflective pause will lead us to see that each item arose out of the myriad integrated, interwoven, and co-ordinated direct and indirect endeavours of other persons.
The “Economic Recovery and Reinvestment” (ERR) initiatives of the U. S. Administration, under President Obama, is currently seeking to promote and to re-energise a corresponding background of integrated profitable production and trade relationships. However, it is not the level of trade, but it is what happens to people, which comprises the primary indication of economic success. Therefore, to judge success of the ERR program by what trade data show, may be somewhat misguided. What is shown by the data which reveal the forthcoming financial income and profit from production and trade operations, does not tell us about how the day to day lives of people, have been affected.
Indeed, governments that are unwilling to be guided by economic evidence, which show how the quality of the living experience of responsible participants in the evolution of the society have been affected, will merely cause the problems which led to the prevailing economic malaise, to re-emerge.
Meanwhile, in our modern industrialized world, division of labour is a critical feature in the production and delivery of the items that we use. Specialization in task assignment, in the skills that are used, and in the locations were production and product assembly take place, have contributed to reductions in the quoted price of the bulk of the respective outputs that are sold on the market. Growth in the market, has therefore caused the living that we each do to be accompanied by various networks of remote and unseen inter-personal involvement with others. Yet, it does not follow that the ERR Packages (of President Obama), which aim to revive prevailing patterns of commercial trade, represent the best way to service the interests of the people that make up the U. S. society. Mere market growth is not the needed solution.
If the ERR program of U. S. President Obama, does not intend to merely revive trade in an environment that promotes self-centredness, selfishness, and greed, some adjustments will become necessary. Specifically, if the President’s program does not intend to return full circle to the economic circumstances of today, its recovery targets will need to become more people-centred. The President (and the gallery of technocrats, officialdom, and bureaucrats that is helping him to draw up and to execute his ERR program), will need to draw on the guidance to a people-centred economic focus, that was first introduced by the English neo-classical economist Alfred Marshall (1890); Principles of Economics; numerous editions; Macmillan and Company Limited , numerous locations /St Martins Press, New York.
In addition, the U. S. President must also take steps to ensure that an exclusive money-centred (ideological) focus on what comprises economic performance, is not allowed to obscure the people-centred results that should form the outcomes which his administration should aim to deliver. The principle which leads to that ideological blockage on what happens to people, and instead to a concentration on monetary results, was initially identified and illuminated by John Lamb Lash (2006); Not in His Image; Chelsea Green Publishing Company, White River Junction, Vermont.
Meanwhile, the economist Alfred Marshall, had pointed out that the monetary data which show the price of traded goods (in single, or in the aggregate market value of trade and exchange), do not provide a sufficient indication of economic performance. Furthermore, the President and cadre of technocrats and advisors, is invited to recognize that Marshall’s looking beyond prevailing market data, was not based on his awareness that monetary quantities should be adjusted for the price level changes that accompany inflation. Rather, the neoclassical economist Alfred Marshall was pointing out that (at any point in time), responsible persons also have a definite guiding non-cash aspect to how they compute/appraise the measured value of the choices of time and resource commitments in which they engage themselves, as mind-guided entities.
Marshall explicitly focussed on the fact that responsible persons seek to acquire access to material components in behalf of their survival; and they seek, as well, access to fulfilment and to understanding which confirms to them that their living is worthwhile. Marshall was therefore inviting us (as well as the framers of the President’s ERR programs), to recognize that there is also a non-cash dimension to the “income” which persons (as mind-guided human economic agents) aim to secure from the selections of time, effort, and resource commitments, into which they enter; or to which they voluntarily commit their efforts.
That non-cash target, at which Conscious mind-guided human economic agents aim, Marshall called their real income. Obviously, therefore, Marshall was calling upon us to recognize that there exists a real economy in which Conscious mind-guided persons operate; and also a money economy in which hired workers get paid, and in which entrepreneurs set out to secure financial profits.
President Obama, is therefore invited to correspondingly frame his ERR programs, mindful of the presence of these two economies. He is invited to particularly recognize that when economists and statisticians use indices of price level changes, to adjust money income, and wages, to some reference basing point in time, these analysts are still talking about only the money economy. President Obama, therefore has a critical commitment decision, about how his ERR Programs will accommodate to the critical non-cash pivots which make up the real economy. Furthermore, he can make that accommodation, either directly; or indirectly (via a strategy of avoidance).
It is true that the U. S. President is the elected head of a capitalist society, where access to the acquisition of more money (even if by devious means), is given the status of god; and where people are conditioned to go out and chase after money, in or der to register how successful their living has been. As a result, (notwithstanding the political propaganda, and all that sort of rot), people are accommodated as merely implements (called human capital), that are manipulated in behalf of how they contribute to more private financial accumulation. However, President Obama needs to decide what results in the lives of people, his ERR policies will aim to generate. Does he aim to primarily foster the world of commercial banking, and its role in fostering market growth? Or does he also intend to foster and to deal with the targets of people, in the real economy?
Clearly, if the experience of people is his primary target, the President will need to see them as working together, not merely to generate buoyant commerce, and accompanying increases in gross national product (GDP). Instead, he will first need to recognize that persons are mind-guided Conscious entities, who understand that they need to work together to accommodate comfortably and predictively to their natural environment. Furthermore, the President must recognize that as conscious entities, respective persons understand that they must exercise their co-operation with each other, at the same time that they respectively set out to carve out a personal existential experience. That experience, they execute by means of personal selections of time and effort commitment which in which they participate (sometimes involuntarily). It is via their direct and indirect participative selections of time, effort and resources, that persons as mind-guided entities, expect to secure/access a preferred path of survival, (in terms of non-cash economic management outcomes, that accompany their sense of being existentially fulfilled or better off).
As a result, the judgements which Conscious (mind-guided) persons make about whether their real income will be enhanced, contains a sense and of their being better off, that capitalist economic analysts have tended to overlook.
The overall sense of being better off which persons frame, is therefore guided by the extent to which they are able to secure a higher quality-of-living, (as indicated by their relative access to mixes of critical technical services and opportunities, and to opportunities for participating in their communities). Accordingly, they seek access to customary items of subsistence (food, clothing, shelter, health-care support, security of person and property, and opportunities for rest and recreation). Additionally, in their search to secure enhancement in their real income, they also seek to achieve access to critical verifiable information. They particularly need information which will enable them to understand and also to work in concert with the evolution of their natural environment (and its laws of autonomous evolution). This policy and program background, was elaborated in Horace Carby-Samuels (2007); Quality-of-Living and Human Development as the Outcome from Economic Progress; Ottawa, Canada; Agora Publishing Consortium).
Essentially, the Administration of President Obama, is invited to recognize that economic performance is not shown only in the money economy, to which the activities of people contribute. Instead, government appraisals of prevailing economic performance, must recognize that there is also the real economy (in the form of the time-use management options that are accessible to people).
Persons aim to secure the attributes to quality-of-living, and to then gain access to enhanced opportunities for Human Development. As a result, the appropriateness of prevailing economic operations, in the U. S. or in any other economy, is shown by the extent to which such quality-of-living opportunities are being made available, or are being enhanced. The Administration of President Obama may therefore not rely only on performance results in the money economy, as indicated by Gross Domestic Product (GDP).
Meanwhile, provisions for investment in health-care, and in education, are also included in the proposed ERR package of this President. However, the provision for investment in education and in health care, is aimed largely at how they will function as complements to commercial activities; rather than at their function as complements to the achievement of a higher quality-of-living, as a stage on the path to the ultimate realization of Human Development.
It is also notable that in the proposed ERR package, there is no provision for monitoring the extent to which the scarce non-renewable resources of the society, are available to service the Human Development targets and aspirations of its members. Additionally, in the ERR package, government funds are being used to refinance private banks, so that they can again merrily pursue their money-centred greed-driven profit agendas. It is also the extent to which corporations are making high levels of financial profits, that will be used as the indication of the forthcoming economic success in the ERR programs.
Accordingly, it will therefore be the same old selfishness-centred, greed-driven economic context, (which had generated the prevailing economic malaise in the first place), which is being resuscitated and reinvigorated by the so far presented ERR programs.
The Resistance to the Inclusion of Real Income
Oversight. and resistance to including the real income that persons achieve in how programs of economic development and revival are structured and are appraised, comes from a surprising and rather comprehensive source.
Meanwhile, a capitalist government is overwhelmingly concerned with promoting and reviving commerce, and that forms the first point in the resistance to including the real income context in how economic performance is measured. Accordingly, fostering the effectiveness with which people may be manipulated to service the profit targets of commerce, (on account of the contribution to of such activities to GDP enhancement) is one of the not overtly stated economic development targets of capitalist government-sponsored economic development programs.
In contrast, the Administration of U. S. President Obama needs to recognize the principle that, by virtue of the role of mind in human evolution, Conscious, responsible, mind-guided, and aware persons, are particularly focussed on their survival path. Such persons are particularly focussed on how their time, effort, and resource management activities, and their survival path are linked. That is why the framers of President Obama’s ERR Programs, must also see the economic management efforts of persons, as being aimed at heightening the survival-centred returns that they are able to secure from their selections of time and resource commitments.
Support to an effective linkage between the money economy, and the quality-of-survival of persons, represents a set of fundamental relationships to which the President’s ERR Program must contribute.
Notably, the real economy reveals itself in the pattern of the survival-centred time-use results, to which persons have access. Meanwhile, in the process of going about their lives, Conscious persons also estimate their economic success, in terms of the relative access which they secure to mixes of technical components, that will enable them to achieve or to experience an enhanced quality-of-living.
Persons then link their access to technical components on which they are able to draw in support of their living, into estimates which they form about how effectively the survival which they seek is being supported. In particular, respective persons frame estimates about whether the prevailing access to technical services which will enhance their quality-of-living (or the access at hand), provides them with opportunities to achieve or to experience the non-cash result of Human Development; (which happens to be the terminal existential target/achievement, that brings fulfilment to their lives).
However, capitalist economists are not prepared to acknowledge that any such type of non-cash target, accompanies the economizing activities in which human economic agents engage. Meanwhile, it happens that an alert (or a sort of “heads up”), as to why the presence of that Human Development target remains and is likely to continue to remain unrecognized and un-accommodated in our society, was elaborated in the book by John Lamb Lash (2006); Not in His Image; Chelsea Green Publishing Company; White River Junction, Vermont.
It must be particularly remembered that while pursuing their time, effort, and resource management activities which make up their living, human beings are also operating as Conscious, mind-guided entities who respectively (even if not collectively) have a conception of self survival. Therefore, the question as to, what are the people-centred outcomes at which the efforts of these Conscious entities are directed, is both relevant, and nontrivial.
Capitalists, for example, impute that the trading and related economic management activities of persons, are directed at making money. However, if one bears in mind the real income feature, to which Alfred Marshall had pointed, it is not sufficient for the ERR Packages of President Obama to dwell only on operations in the money economy. Furthermore, the associated forthcoming data in the money economy, and that on the real economy, do not vary either proportionally or in unison. As a result, to achieve the reconciliation results in Human Development at which they aim, the survival path, which respective human economic agents are seeking to carve out for themselves, does not await the intervention of a redeemer figure. Instead, in their aim to pursue the non-cash objective of Human Development persons are stimulated to execute a judicious blending of their operations in the money economy, with those attainments to which they (decide to) commit in the real economy.
The framers of the ERR programs of President Obama, are therefore invited to appreciate humans, as making time and effort management choices, in support of their aim to go about their lives as responsible entities that are in search of a preferred survival path. To recognize that such is their commitment, contrasts with the focus which emphasizes humans as chasing (opportunities to acquire) money.
Clearly, therefore, ERR programs which have been framed to complement the activities of people, as money chasers, will differ from ERR programs that aim to enhance the real income of persons, so as to foster their access to a survival path, which accompanies enhanced quality-of-living.
Meanwhile, John Lash has pointed out that the fundamental operating premises of a number of the organized religions of the world (and he names Christianity, Judaism, and Islam), are based on a redeemer, salvationist, or redemptionist context, which adherents are conditioned to frame into how they interpret their continuing existence.
Government officialdom, bureaucrats, and economic technocrats, who have been indoctrinated and conditioned in the redemptionist context (of these organized religions), will be unwilling to recognize that “appropriately civilized” humans in the society, may also aim to take personal responsibility for the survival path, that is their lives. Analysts and officialdom that has been so indoctrinated will be inhibited from being disposed to countenance the presence of Human Development, (as the background existential terminus at which Conscious mind-guided persons aim their time and effort commitments).
Analysts and officialdom who have been so conditioned in the redemptionist context, but who may be associated with the ERR Programs, will be indifferent to giving due attention to the need for support to the non-cash elements, out of which real income enhancement will be forthcoming, and from which the path to Human Development will arise. Additionally, such technocratic and bureaucratic adherents of the redemptionist perspective on human reality, will be also correspondingly indifferent to the need for the living-related resource management and other activities in which persons participate, to be also associated with practices of empathy, mutuality, and non-predation. Currently, therefore, the economic analysis behind President Obama’s ERR program, does not look on the need to recognize, or to accommodate plans, to the presence and to the importance of the non-cash results (such as real income, and enhancement in quality-of-living, that eventually lead into the Human Development), as targets at which mind-guided human economic agents aim.
However, when economic analysts, and also the framers of government policies, have been conditioned (through their religious allegiance to a redemptionist context) to overlook the presence of the real economy (and how it is linked to fostering of quality-of-living, and to Human Development), some grave existential results follow.
Essentially the conditioning to accept that more existential/human ennoblement and perfection is achieved, by virtue of the influence of a redeemer, cultivates a parallel indifference to the aim of persons to use their effort commitments toward the achievement of Human Development. The conditioning in the redemptionist context, essentially inculcates a disposition to accept a capitalist approach to what personal responsibility is all about. The result is that in the limit, personal responsibility becomes construed as the circumstance which requires that people must go out and earn their own money, which they must then use to look after themselves and their own families.
Allegiance to the redemptionist conditioning therefore accommodates and tolerates the creation of a society where persons are conditioned into a capitalist concentration on selfishness, and self-centredness, on a money-centred measurement and appraisal of economic results . The implicit redemptionist promotion of the capitalist doctrine (with its emphasis on money-centred results, with its legitimation of exploitation, and with its indifference to the experience of people), provides the opportunity for capitalist doctrine to have a field day, in how persons in the society are conditioned to see their reality, and in how their efforts to contribute to economic progress is measured.
The ERR Program can aim at generating something else other than eventually leading back to the circumstances that brought us to the prevailing economic malaise. However, it can do so only if it is prepared to also bring into prevailing measurements of economic performance, a focus on the relative success of people, in achieving the non-cash quality-of-living targets that they have.
The economic performance of ERR initiatives must be also appraised in terms of the extent to which the opportunities of persons to acquire critical mixes of real services, which satisfy their requirements for subsistence (food, clothing, shelter, health-care, rest and recreation, and for security of person and property), have been enhanced. It will not be sufficient for measurements of performance to show how much money people have begun to earn. Additionally, accompanying investment in appropriate formal and informal programs of education, and skills development, must not only provide skills training, but they must also promote the access that persons have to verifiable information which will enable them to understand their natural environment, (and its autonomous rules of operation).
Meanwhile, the principle of division of labour, ensures that trade and commerce will also contribute to the real income flows that form a normal part of the real economy. However, that does not mean that the accompanying trade, must be a part of normal capitalist practice. For example, doctrinaire capitalism condones exploitation and inter-personal predation. Accordingly, it was the accommodation, promotion and condoning of deceptious and misleading advertising in capitalist trade in commercial paper, which brought us to the prevailing global economic stalemate.
Government, (as the institutional embodiment of the particular society), therefore faces an aggregate economic management challenge. It must service an economy where trade, in expectation of market profits, is accommodated; but where the delivery of outputs which enable persons to achieve a higher quality-of-living is also promoted.
Mindful of the presence of the real economy, (where persons manage their time and effort commitments toward the achievement of Human Development), governments therefore face a challenge. They are required to facilitate and to promote an informed environment of resource and effort management, where the principles of mutuality and of empathy are foundations to the interaction of persons, with each other as well as with the natural environment (and its autonomous laws of evolution).
The ERR initiatives of President Obama, are therefore challenged to operate as more than a stimulus to the reinvigoration of a capitalist bag of tricks, where private individuals or groups set out to use various ruses, to acquire or to trap a private accumulation of a flow of cash. Instead, the ERR Program, must also promote in the trading environment, prevailing rules of operation that are consistent with the principles of mutuality and of the empathy of persons, with each other as well as with the natural environment.
Meanwhile, in the normal operations of a society that operates under capitalist doctrine, people are conditioned to hold the view that the central pivot to their participation in economic life, is the success of their efforts to (directly or indirectly) acquire money. However, in recognition of the presence of the real economy, the ERR program of U. S. President Obama needs to give due recognition to the correspondingly critical role that the time-use-management opportunities which people face, plays in their economic life. That is why the President’s ERR programs, must also give due attention to promoting the access of responsible participants in the society, to mixes of critical services on which they need to draw in order to achieve a high quality-of-survival. Additionally, the ERR operations must also promote the access of persons to critical verifiable information about their natural environment, and how it evolves.
It will not be sufficient for the President’s initiatives, to stimulate trade that leads to the enhancement of gross domestic product (GDP). That type of economic development emphasis will operate merely to resuscitate the type of commerce, where people are accommodated largely for how they will function as (no more than) technically employable “stiffs”. Additionally, in the presence of an ERR focus that is centred on market and on profit growth, the bulk of the members of the society will be accommodated primarily for their function as customers, (who can be bamboozled or “hustled”, (as entrepreneurs, professional groups, and corporate organizations, use deceptious advertising, to promote profitable trade).
Therefore, if the ERR package of President Obama and its rules of operation, aim to service the quality-of-living and also the survival priorities of people, rather than the financial profit targets of the banks and the corporations, the package needs to adjust its guidance framework.
The Kyoto Protocol Is Not Enough!
Replace Capitalistocracy including the GDP Index Toward a New Political Economy of Social Justice and Environmental Protection
by Raymond Samuels II
Part I: ISBN: 1-894839-97-8,
Part II: ISBN: 1-894934-34-2
Book excerpt: There are apparently some people who think that the current “Greenhouse Effect” will simply lead to an “evolutionary” change in the global climate, so that climatic areas in the northern hemisphere like Canada, Scandinavia, Russia, Alaska in the U.S., and Antarctica in the southern hemisphere will become like one big tropical resort area like Tahiti, Cuba, or Jamaica. Soon everyone will be enjoying glorious sunshine, and sipping exotic tropical drinks in Nova Scotia, Baffin Island in the Canadian Arctic, or around the Arctic waters of Siberia, according to people with this apparent view. These people profess a dislike for the cold, and they therefore welcome any change that might eventually get rid of their abhored winter blaaaaahs.
Unfortunately for these people, such a view is not supported by critical scientific evidence, beyond “scientific infomercials” and propaganda pieces that have been sponsored by various well-financed Big Business interests. Indeed, it has been the job of the largely corporate owned mass-media in Canada, and elsewhere, to channel viewers, readers, and listeners into responses which will complement the elite pursuit of insatiable commercial profit. This corporate owned mass-media does not want to draw public attention to the dire fate which awaits the public, if ‘the Economy’ is not rejuvenated in a manner that minimizes social and environmental costs.
The large scale ‘owners of capital’ have structured the prevailing capitalistic economy to principally serve their interests in the pursuit of money, status, and power for themselves. Like heroine or “crack” cocaine drug addicts, ‘capitalistocrats’ have become so addicted to the pursuit of a self-absorbing materialistic lifestyle predicted on money, status, and power, they would much rather apparently destroy our planet, and all life along with it, than to change their ways of drug-like abuse. Indeed, the mass-media in the prevailing capitalistocratic systems of Canada, the United States, United Kingdom, continental Europe, and elsewhere, are no less corrupt than the politicians which they are supposedly “holding accountable”.
The mass-media has apparently covered-up the fate that awaits humanity, and the rest of our planet, if there is not an immediate substantive response to the Global Warming threat beyond the relatively superficial responses associated with the extremely slow responses to fulfilling the relatively superficial Kyoto Protocol. Indeed, failure to redress Global Warming with great alacrity, will not mythically result in northern hemispheres being turned into extensions of “tropical paradises”.
The cold air masses that hover over the Arctic and Antarctic climatic areas of the planet are absolutely vital to moderating the temperatures of planet Earth. Global Warming by the irresponsible activities of greed driven private enterprises under American led “global capitalism”, are destroying these vital climatic areas at an alarming rates.
As a human species, we have already witnessed deadly heat waves and humidity. The accompanying worsening cancer causing ultra violet (UV) rays due to rapid accompanying ozone depletion is already creating experiences which almost feel like a form of radiation poisoning. Further accompanying weather cataclysms including more devastating hurricanes like Hurricane Katrina in New Orleans in late Summer 2005, and other such “weather events” are only a relatively small tip of the iceberg so-to-speak. The “hellish” summer of 2005 internationally has poignantly showed relative to the comparatively milder Summer 2004, that changes due to the abusive activities by human beings on the planet can be sudden, and extremely drastic. The current quantuum advancing devastating destructive impacts of American-led “global capitalism” are threatening to precipitate a catastrophic global drought in vital agricultural areas internationally that the world has never ever seen; due to unending rising temperatures, that will make the traditional temperature characteristics of the tropics today (that have benefited from Arctic and Antarctic moderation) seem like comparative ice boxes. Worsening “hellish” summers will lead into hellish other parts of the year also, with the prospective disappearance of the Arctic and Antarctic climatic areas. The inevitable result of such allowed phenomenon will be an ensuing Global Famine that so far, the world has also never seen spreading from the United States and Canada, into Europe and the rest of the World.
The rising temperatures of the oceans would eventually completely destroy all vital air (oxygen) producing plankton. A global crisis in agricultural production would be further accompanied by the cascading rapid dying out of all species in the ocean. The oceans would become dead polluted waters (the Gulf of Mexico has already been basically destroyed, with other parts of the ocean following pursuit).
In such a milieu of Global Famine, the world would be taken over by various warring military camps threatening each other with nuclear annihilation, and privately-run “terrorist” organizations trying to forcibly acquire what little of the Earth is left, for the exclusive use of elites, criminal syndicates, and gangs, leaving “masses” to perish in a milieu of spiralling global starvation, and poverty in a climate of socio-economic chaos and societal upheaval. Indeed, the mass-media has hypocritically ignored the extent to which ‘capitalism’ is actually the root cause of growing apparent “terrorism” as more and more people are turning to violent political extremism, in the face of environmental destruction, related oppression, and overall declines in quality-of-living.
Having destroyed the air-producing ocean life, and rainforests under a greed driven ethos of capitalism, soon even the Global Air Supply would become threatened with the overall rapid decay of vital ecosystems. Global Warming promises the convert the whole Earth not into a tropical paradise, but rather into a giant coffin, where all life on the planet will miserably perish. The Earth will eventually become very similar to Mars sooner than you think, unless the whole economic system can rejuvenated from its self-destructive path of Global Warming and accompanying pollution including ozone depletion. The human race will simply become a footnote for other possible space exploring advanced species in the universe to study in their future scientific missions of archaeological discovery, unless humanity changes from its current overall destructive ways.
People in their communities can either choose to play Ninetendo games, and worry about various other materialistic lifestyle considerations in “blissful ignorance”, in the image of the elites who prevail over self-destructive capitalistocracies, or alternatively, people can choose to rally their governments for vitally needed social change. ‘Sober’ members of the diverse public must either become actively engaged in redressing the shortcomings of the prevailing economic system, or face the dire consequences of their jaded attitudes. Members of the diverse public who are concerned about their immediate quality-of-survival cannot afford to be complacent. These members of the diverse public must use what little that remains of destroyed democratic systems (that have been taken-over by the substantive operation of ‘capitalistocracy’) to challenge corrupted government leaders.
Government leaders have allowed themselves to be seduced and “bought-out” by self-serving greed-driven interests, that operate against the vital affirmation of the quality-of-living interests of the diverse public that these leaders were supposedly elected to serve; and against the interests of quality-of-living seeking human beings internationally. So far, these government leaders have chosen to substantively ignore capitalistocractic activities that precipitate Global Warming, and accompanying…
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