Devouring the Earth is a traditional value

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It’s easy to blame our unsustainable devouring of the Earth on capitalism, but the human tendency to kill the goose that laid the golden eggs far predates that system.

It’s natural, like metastatic cancer.  If a society consumes and kills and reproduces as quickly as possible, it will outcompete a society with longer-term vision.

The world desperately needs a rational, new economic system designed against this root cause.

According to Robin McKie

Tigers, coral reefs and all the marine life they support, amphibians such as the golden frog of Panama, orang-utans, sharks, mountain gorillas, the marine iguanas of the Galápagos, albatrosses, chimpanzees and thousands of other creatures now face obliteration: hunted, rendered homeless, and poisoned by humans.

More to the point, this predation has been going on, not for hundreds of years, but for tens of thousands of years.

Whenever Homo sapiens has moved into new territory, this has been followed quickly by the disappearance of most large land mammals, palaeontologists have found. For example, the Clovis people, ancient hunters armed with fearsome stone-tipped spears, arrived in North America 12,000 years ago.

A total of 75 species, including woolly mammoths, mastodons, four-horned antelopes and lumbering sloths the size of giraffes were killed off almost immediately. A thousand years later, the slaughter continued in South America when humans arrived there.

The glyptodon (a giant armadillo-like animal), several species of rodent and various llama-like animals were wiped out. And a similar bloodbath occurred in Australia with the arrival of the first members of Homo sapiens.

Jared Diamond asked

Why do some societies make disastrous decisions?

which eventually led to Collapse. Also check out his videos about the earlier Gun, Germs and Steel



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4 Comments

  1. “In ancient Greece, the city-states that waited until their own harvest was in before attacking and destroying a rival community’s crops often experienced better long-term success.”

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  2. “It is truly mindboggling how “they” are accelerating the destruction of the earth in the quest for more oil, natural gas, coal, timber and water. There is absolutely No Concern for the future…especially in the realms of our climate and drinking water…there is no end to schemes to create more oil and gas pipelines over aquifers, more use of potable water for hydrofracking, the dumping of moutaintop-removal waste filling streams and watersheds, potential construction of a large open-pit mine on the headwaters of the biggest Alaskan fishery (the Pebble Mine) and of course this accelarated rampage has everything to do with climate change….it is comparable to mastisizing cancer. Every hard won law for civil rights or the environment is being unraveled before our eyes, with no end in sight, ….very depressing.”

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  3. According to Carl N. McDaniel and John M. Gowdy

    At first glance Nauru is just a very clear-cut case of short-sighted misjudgment that could easily have been avoided. Like the entire planet, Nauru’s fate was sealed by greed, corruption, and short-sightedness. The problem and its solution seem obvious: When we are educated to realize the folly of devastating the life-support systems and ravenously consuming the resources that permit human habitation, we will readily change our behavior and will be on the road to sustainability. But, in reality, folly holds the upper hand. Why this is so, as well as why Nauru is a window through which one can see global trajectories into disaster, are the stories we seek to tell.

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