Hackers tribes GCC
31.3.2014 Proposal for the "Inverting Globalization" conference, topic of "Unsustainability, Precarity, Ecology"
Non-reversible collapse of Global Consumer Civilization
Any growth in rates of consumption of material resources can not be sustained on the finite globe. [AB]
"Economic growth" is based on the use of natural resources that are limited and non-renewable on the time scale of human civilizations. Anything that civilized humans consider a "resource" -- food, fossil fuels, drinkable water, forests, land, animals, precious metals, plants… -- is part of the balanced ecosystem, and is object to universal laws of nature, such as gravity, thermodynamics, ecology and mathematics.
The way of life civilized humans are arrogantly choosing is disregarding the laws of ecology ("increase in food base cause population to grow, reduction in food base cause population to decline") [DQ] and mathematics ("exponential function describes the size of anything that is growing steadily") [AB].
For the last 6.000 years citizens have been going from one crisis to another; all civilizations have collapsed, only to be replaced with the next, and this Global Consumer Civilization (GCC) is wondering if the next collapse can be inverted.
It can not.
Regardless of the political affiliation or economic system -- capitalist or communist, democratic or dictatorial -- EVERY way of life that is allowing or encouraging taking more from the environment then giving back, is unsustainable.
The universe is not our resource, to be consumed.
Every religious or scientific teaching that positions humans above the other inhabitants of the living planet is unsustainable.
Humans are not the pinnacle of evolution, nor are we God's favorite creation.
We do NOT have the right to over-populate the world, to eat more then our share, to prevent other life on Earth from continuing.
We are NOT exempt of the laws of ecology: when we have eaten all the food, our numbers will decrease.
This humanity-collapse scenario would be the good news for the rest of the living planet.
However, since we are endowed with spirituality, intellect, consciousness, tools-making-ability, Moral Sense [MT], eagerness for Scientific Progress and a drive for Economic Growth, we are on the way to turn the whole biosphere into the food for ourselves.
This collapse-of-biospehere scenario might be avoided if the other collapses prevent the GCC from getting to that point: human decimation due to pollution or global epidemics; human extinction due to devastating climate change [GMcP], or nuclear catastrophe.
There is still a chance that after any of these collapses some of the humans will still survive, and that in the far future, in year 3000, they would have learned from our mistakes.
The lessons I hope we will be able to teach them:
- do not take more then is our share - we are at the same level as other living beings, not on top of hierarchy - we are as important element in the whole system, as any other element - focus on the personal growth, rather then economic growth - make sure as many as possible species survive, since we are interdependent - connect with your own spiritual nature, and the natural world around you, instead of controlling or serving other human or non-human beings - create symbiotic systems of plants, animals, earths and waters instead of "social networks" - instead of being owner or consumer, ruler or user, be a PART -- a particle in the participating Universe.
[AB] Albert Bartlett: "Arithmetic, Population and Energy" http://www.albartlett.org/presentations/arithmetic_population_energy_transcript_english.html
[DQ] Daniel Quinn, "The Story of B" & "Beyond Civilization", http://www.davidsheen.com/b/b4.htm & http://www.ishmael.org/Origins/Beyond_Civilization/
[MT] Mark Twain, "The Mysterious Stranger" http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Mysterious_Stranger
[GMcP] Guy McPherson, "Nature Bats Last" http://guymcpherson.com/climate-chaos/