Talkin ’bout a Revolution
if you’re talking about destruction, don’t you know that you can count me out…
I share John Lennon’s ambivalence about the revolution, but I think there are revolutions coming. Maybe a revolution doesn’t have to include the choreography and armament to take the Bastille?
How about a revolution in agriculture? We watched a video about colony collapse disorder last night: Vanishing of the Bees. Well done, sobering, broad review of the situation for our pollination partners. I used to keep bees. Most beekeepers develop a pretty strong connection to their hives, to the collective being that is a beehive. The beekeepers in this movie certainly showed that connection. I don’t want to give the story away, so I will just say that I think the filmmakers are correct to identify bees as “canaries in the coal mine.” I think we need a revolution in the way we approach agriculture and food. Global food. What should it look like?
Also thinking about our global economic system. Tikkun has a piece by Leonardo Boff on the Crisis of Capitalism. This is an interesting read. I do have a sense that the current global economic crisis is qualitatively different from previous downturns. We face some pretty staggering demands from the natural world. We now live in a world of more extreme weather and the likelihood is that the trend to more extreme weather is just getting started, so the solution is a really major retooling of the world economy where sustainability rather than profit is the goal. Stabilizing the environment is going to require more than a game of three card monte based on cap and trade. The shell game has always been entertaining, but the game is fixed and the outcome is about fleecing the mark. (if you look around and you can’t spot the mark, you are the mark). Here’s a little taste of that Boff piece:
I believe the present crisis of capitalism is more than cyclical and structural. It is terminal. Are we seeing the end of the genius of capitalism, of always being able to adapt to any circumstance? I am aware that only few other people maintain this thesis. Two things, however, bring me to this conclusion.
The first is the following: the crisis is terminal because we all, but in particular capitalism, have exceeded the limits of the Earth. We have occupied and depredated the whole planet, destroying her subtle equilibrium and exhausting her goods and services, to the point that she alone can no longer replenish all that has been removed…
The second reason is linked to the humanitarian crisis that capitalism is creating.
Before, it was limited to the peripheral countries. Now it is global, and it has reached the central countries. The economic question cannot be resolved by dismantling society. The victims, connected by new venues of communication, resist, revolt and threaten the present order. Ever more people, especially the young, reject the perverse capitalist political economic logic: the dictatorship of finance that, through the market, subjugates the States to its interests, and the profitability of speculative capital, that circulates from one stock market to another, reaping profits without producing anything at all, except more money for the stockholders.
So our gaze in the US of A is currently fixed on the three card monte game that is the national election cycle. Here we go, keep the cards rotating, let the media cover the “debates” and comment on who won and who lost, like a winner could be found in this crowd (Huntsman? What is he doing in the GOP?) The media talking heads perform like they have one lonely brain cell in their pretty little heads, they stay away from any significant, in-depth questions, or if they ask a good question, they watch as somebody pulls the string so the candidate can recite a talking point that may or may not have anything to do with the question or the underlying and significant issue.
Just think about how bad it is when the country is having trouble deciding whether Obama is a better choice than a candidate like Perry or Bachman. Yikes! Obama has made some disastrous choices, starting with his choice of Larry Summers and Timothy Geithner and he’s turned out to be sort of an Eisenhower Republican, though maybe some of us were hoping to get a democrat in the WH or even a Rockefeller Republican. Can’t get there from here.
Imagine this country electing an FDR type democrat? That would be a revolution (and would probably spark one as well).