Support the Arctic Sea Ice Forum and Blog

Poll

Are you hoping for / and or expecting, a global civilisational collapse?

I both hope and expect that global civilisation will collapse as soon as possible
3 (5.7%)
Yes, I hope that global civilisation will collapse as soon as possible
2 (3.8%)
I expect that global civilisation will collapse within the next few decades
11 (20.8%)
I do not expect global civilisation to collapse, nor do I hope for it to happen in the foreseeable future.
15 (28.3%)
I hope that global civilisation will not collapse in the foreseeable future
7 (13.2%)
I do not expect global civilisation to collapse in the foreseeable future
3 (5.7%)
I expect that global civilisation will collapse within the next few decades, but I hope that it won't happen.
12 (22.6%)

Total Members Voted: 51

Author Topic: Are you hoping for a global civilisational collapse?  (Read 6392 times)

binntho

  • Nilas ice
  • Posts: 1387
    • View Profile
  • Liked: 451
  • Likes Given: 106
Are you hoping for a global civilisational collapse?
« on: August 27, 2019, 04:48:28 AM »
It has long been a source of deep disquiet for me to see that many of the excellent posters in this fantastic forum seem to be harbouring a wish for global civilisational collapse.

Others, being the realists that they are, look at the facts and strongly expect it to happen, even within the next few decades.

Then we have the incorrigible optimists who claim that global civilisation will survive, probably by using some clever combination of tenacity, ignorance and technological development.

As for defining what constitutes a "civilisational collapse" I think I'll stick to a major destructive shift in global human society that results in a reduction of close to 100% in annual human CO2 emission within a few decades.

In other words, "global civilisational collapse" is the Apocalypse, Armageddon, the Breakfast of the Gods or Ragnarok. Almost no people will survive, and the survivors will at be at preindustrial technological levels.
because a thing is eloquently expressed it should not be taken to be as necessarily true
St. Augustine, Confessions V, 6

oren

  • First-year ice
  • Posts: 5886
    • View Profile
  • Liked: 1985
  • Likes Given: 1761
Re: Are you hoping for a global civilisational collapse?
« Reply #1 on: August 27, 2019, 05:06:28 AM »
I don't think this poll is well-worded.

I go for both
"I expect that global civilization will collapse within the next few decades" for which I voted, and
"I hope that global civilization will not collapse in the foreseeable future".

binntho

  • Nilas ice
  • Posts: 1387
    • View Profile
  • Liked: 451
  • Likes Given: 106
Re: Are you hoping for a global civilisational collapse?
« Reply #2 on: August 27, 2019, 05:08:16 AM »
To make my position clear: I woted for "I do not expect global civilisation to collapse, nor do I hope for it to happen in the foreseeable future."

One would have thought it unnecessary to state that one does not hope for a global civilisational collapse, but after having seen some people actually express that hope, I start to wonder why. Is it because they think that "nature" will somehow gain from near (or full?) human extinction?

I do not believe in the Gaia hypothesis, I do not believe that the Earth (or more precisely, the Earth's biosphere) is a "self-regulating and balancing system". That does not deny the existence of both positive and negative feedbacks, but it does posit that the biosphere as a whole is chaotic, and  therefore cannot be "self-regulating" nor has it any natural "balance".

History teaches us that civilisations collapse only very rarely (not to be confused with societal collapse, where complex societal structures fall due to outside influences).

The Mayan and the Roman examples are often cited, but the Mayans simply moved away (and their civilisation continued until it was destroyed by the Christian Church), and the Roman empire did lose societal complexity in several large steps starting in the 5th century, but their civilisaton continued and is still going strong today (not least thank to the Catholic Church).

History also teaches us that we humans are incredibly resilient and resourceful. Our current, increasingly global, civilisation has endured and evolved ever more strongly in the last couple of centuries, surviving such mass calamaties as the Gulag, Mao's Great March, the Holocaust, the Bengal Famines, the Khmer Rouge and the Rwandan genocide.

Millions, even tens of millions, of people die of starvation or violence in some corner, while the rest of us eat hamburgers and drive gas guzzlers. That's what history teaches us.

The biggest threat from our current anthropogenic global warming is it's effects on agriculture, with some commentators predicting climate refugees in the hundreds of millions within a few decades. Will that lead to civilisational collapse? Hundreds of millions of refugees on the move will probably result in famine, violence and war. But civilisational collapse?

In short, I don't see it, history does not predict it, logic does not posit it, and hope does not yearn for it.
because a thing is eloquently expressed it should not be taken to be as necessarily true
St. Augustine, Confessions V, 6

miki

  • Frazil ice
  • Posts: 125
    • View Profile
  • Liked: 35
  • Likes Given: 173
Re: Are you hoping for a global civilisational collapse?
« Reply #3 on: August 27, 2019, 05:08:24 AM »
I don't think this poll is well-worded.

I go for both
"I expect that global civilization will collapse within the next few decades" for which I voted, and
"I hope that global civilization will not collapse in the foreseeable future".

Same vote, both choices.

binntho

  • Nilas ice
  • Posts: 1387
    • View Profile
  • Liked: 451
  • Likes Given: 106
Re: Are you hoping for a global civilisational collapse?
« Reply #4 on: August 27, 2019, 05:09:23 AM »
I don't think this poll is well-worded.

I go for both
"I expect that global civilization will collapse within the next few decades" for which I voted, and
"I hope that global civilization will not collapse in the foreseeable future".

True. Should have allowed for multiple choice but now that the poll has started, it doesn't allow me to change that.
because a thing is eloquently expressed it should not be taken to be as necessarily true
St. Augustine, Confessions V, 6

KiwiGriff

  • Grease ice
  • Posts: 755
    • View Profile
  • Liked: 424
  • Likes Given: 127
Re: Are you hoping for a global civilisational collapse?
« Reply #5 on: August 27, 2019, 05:11:37 AM »
Quote
I both hope and expect that global civilisation will collapse as soon as possible
 Yes, I hope that global civilisation will collapse as soon as possible
 I expect that global civilisation will collapse within the next few decades
 I do not expect global civilisation to collapse, nor do I hope for it to happen in the foreseeable future.
 I hope that global civilisation will not collapse in the foreseeable future
 I do not expect global civilisation to collapse in the foreseeable future

None of the above.
I expect extreme pressure on our Liberal Democratic civilization to develop over time.
In some places we are seeing a swing towards the Alt right. Is Nazi Germany the civilization we want for our offspring?
 As the economic costs and impacts of AGW grows the possibility of some country's collapsing into unpalatable forms of government  increases. War is highly likely over resources like water and land. Food supply will become more at risk of extreme weather events also having  a possible effect on the stability of large regions .
How many country's  have to be effected before we no longer have the ability to support international trade?

The probability of our global civilization collapsing is not zero over the next seventy years. The less we do to head off AGW the greater the risk.
“If you are part of a society that votes, then do so. There may be no candidates and no measures you want to vote for ... but there are certain to be ones you want to vote against. In case of doubt, vote against. By this rule you will rarely go wrong.”

― Robert A. Heinlein, Time Enough for Love

binntho

  • Nilas ice
  • Posts: 1387
    • View Profile
  • Liked: 451
  • Likes Given: 106
Re: Are you hoping for a global civilisational collapse?
« Reply #6 on: August 27, 2019, 05:14:19 AM »
I don't think this poll is well-worded.

I go for both
"I expect that global civilization will collapse within the next few decades" for which I voted, and
"I hope that global civilization will not collapse in the foreseeable future".

True. Should have allowed for multiple choice but now that the poll has started, it doesn't allow me to change that.

Added a 7th option combining the two above, but the poll does not allow me to change my vote, nor can I edit it to allow it to change votes.

Is there somebody with higher authority than me who could be bothered to make those changes (i.e. add multiple choice and / or allow voters to change their votes).
because a thing is eloquently expressed it should not be taken to be as necessarily true
St. Augustine, Confessions V, 6

binntho

  • Nilas ice
  • Posts: 1387
    • View Profile
  • Liked: 451
  • Likes Given: 106
Re: Are you hoping for a global civilisational collapse?
« Reply #7 on: August 27, 2019, 05:15:41 AM »
None of the above.
I expect extreme pressure on our Liberal Democratic civilization to develop over time.
In some places we are seeing a swing towards the Alt right. Is Nazi Germany the civilization we want for our offspring?

Our global civilisation is neither Liberal Democratic nor Nazi. It's so very much complicated than that, and these labels keep changing all the time anyway.

Quote
The probability of our global civilization collapsing is not zero over the next seventy years. The less we do to head off AGW the greater the risk.

Agree.
because a thing is eloquently expressed it should not be taken to be as necessarily true
St. Augustine, Confessions V, 6

binntho

  • Nilas ice
  • Posts: 1387
    • View Profile
  • Liked: 451
  • Likes Given: 106
Re: Are you hoping for a global civilisational collapse?
« Reply #8 on: August 27, 2019, 06:08:34 AM »
In another post, Sam mentioned two authors, Oswald Spengler and Arnold J. Toynbee, and cited them as authorities to a large number of "civilsational collapses".

Spengler's Magnus Opus, "The Decline of the West" (1918) was very popular and apparently a big influence on Toynbee, but was very week on actual historical fact (something Spengler did not try to hide).

Toynbee was an extremely famous and well thought of historian in his time, and his major work, "A Study of History" (1934) became a great hit, although most people apparently read the one-book synthesis by D. C. Somervell (1947) rather than plough through all 12 volumes of the original work.

Toynbee was clearly on the same line as Spengler, with civilisations rising and falling. As a renowned classicist, one should have thought that historical facts were more prominent in his work, but apparently he preferred myth and allegories over factual data. Today he is considered something of a relic, a name that is brought up because of his former renown, but rarely as a historian with a valid message for today.

Both of these authors can be thought of as being right-wing individualists and elitists, Spengler in particular, but Toynbee perhaps less so as he grew older. So perhaps there is somewhere a group of politically like-minded people who rely on the the Spengler - Toynbee axis to justify their veiws?
« Last Edit: August 27, 2019, 07:17:55 AM by binntho »
because a thing is eloquently expressed it should not be taken to be as necessarily true
St. Augustine, Confessions V, 6

petm

  • Grease ice
  • Posts: 675
    • View Profile
  • Liked: 330
  • Likes Given: 27
Re: Are you hoping for a global civilisational collapse?
« Reply #9 on: August 27, 2019, 07:08:36 AM »
I see you upped the ante (and elaborated).  :D

I expect a collapse (although it could be more like a century than decades -- no way to know yet).

I'm ambivalent about hoping for it or not. That's a loaded question. If it doesn't collapse *ever* (due to AGW), it means that the global ecosystem didn't collapse, which obviously is fantastic. But if it just takes a long time before it collapses, then quite likely it means *more* ecosystem damage, which obviously is horrible. So on balance I'd rather see it collapse sooner rather than later. After all, we are only 1 species. What right do we have to extinct so many others?

There's also the far less important (in my thinking) question about whether we should want society to continue on in its present form. Despite our utterly amazing material successes, it hardly seems that great...
« Last Edit: August 27, 2019, 07:19:37 AM by petm »

petm

  • Grease ice
  • Posts: 675
    • View Profile
  • Liked: 330
  • Likes Given: 27
Re: Are you hoping for a global civilisational collapse?
« Reply #10 on: August 27, 2019, 07:22:04 AM »
I do not believe that the Earth (or more precisely, the Earth's biosphere) is a "self-regulating and balancing system".

Of course it is. That's exactly what ecosystems are and what evolution creates. Has nothing to do with Gaia, whoever that may be.

https://www.researchgate.net/publication/288653935_The_diversity-stability_debate
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fitness_landscape
« Last Edit: August 27, 2019, 07:28:44 AM by petm »

binntho

  • Nilas ice
  • Posts: 1387
    • View Profile
  • Liked: 451
  • Likes Given: 106
Re: Are you hoping for a global civilisational collapse?
« Reply #11 on: August 27, 2019, 07:28:30 AM »
Re: Ecosystem damage. Well, we've been damaging away for ages, and it's gonna get a whole lot of worse before it gets better.

Re: The current form of our society - it's simply the best it can be, and is directly a result of evolutionary processes (in the Darwininan sense, both biological and sociological).

If we don't see civilisational collapse within the next century or two, depopulation is going to happen anyway and probably very fast. Vast areas of the globe will become totally depopulated, with wildlife and ecosystems rejoicing! I'd prefer that outcome.

I have two "adoptive" sons who live in the arid mountains of North-Estern Ethiopia. Everywhere you go you see people and their farms, up and down the mountains and into the deepest valleys. The only growing season is just after the summer rains, and trying to scratch a living from the soil is truly hard work.

But as I've told the two boys,  when they or their children re-visit their home region, the mountains will be more or less depopulated since everybody will have moved to the cities, and native forest will be slowly covering the former farmlands.
« Last Edit: August 27, 2019, 07:35:11 AM by binntho »
because a thing is eloquently expressed it should not be taken to be as necessarily true
St. Augustine, Confessions V, 6

binntho

  • Nilas ice
  • Posts: 1387
    • View Profile
  • Liked: 451
  • Likes Given: 106
Re: Are you hoping for a global civilisational collapse?
« Reply #12 on: August 27, 2019, 07:34:40 AM »
I do not believe that the Earth (or more precisely, the Earth's biosphere) is a "self-regulating and balancing system".

Of course it is. That's exactly what ecosystems are and what evolution creates. Has nothing to do with Gaia, whoever that may be.

https://www.researchgate.net/publication/288653935_The_diversity-stability_debate
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fitness_landscape

Ecosystems are not self-regulating (there is no "self" and there are no "regulations") and I very much doubt that they have any "balance" to maintain. Ecosystems are a constantly changing web of interaction, and any "balance" is temporary and fleeting.

Evolutionary theory in it's purest form is on the other hand one of my favourite contenders for explaining everything. But it's not "self-regulating", that's one of the oldest misconceptions regarding evolution.

Evolution does however automatically balance energy usage with available energy.

(PS I can't see the link you posted as supporting either view)
because a thing is eloquently expressed it should not be taken to be as necessarily true
St. Augustine, Confessions V, 6

petm

  • Grease ice
  • Posts: 675
    • View Profile
  • Liked: 330
  • Likes Given: 27
Re: Are you hoping for a global civilisational collapse?
« Reply #13 on: August 27, 2019, 07:44:28 AM »
Truly, H. sapiens has been damaging the ecosystem for ages, but there's a key difference now: the rate. Both due to population / economic growth and technological advance, the damage now is happening at rates orders of magnitude faster than in the past, and accelerating. The Earth is not limitless.

binntho

  • Nilas ice
  • Posts: 1387
    • View Profile
  • Liked: 451
  • Likes Given: 106
Re: Are you hoping for a global civilisational collapse?
« Reply #14 on: August 27, 2019, 07:47:13 AM »
Truly, H. sapiens has been damaging the ecosystem for ages, but there's a key difference now: the rate. Both due to population / economic growth and technological advance, the damage now is happening at rates orders of magnitude faster than in the past, and accelerating. The Earth is not limitless.

All very true. But it's not the end of the world (yet) ...
because a thing is eloquently expressed it should not be taken to be as necessarily true
St. Augustine, Confessions V, 6

petm

  • Grease ice
  • Posts: 675
    • View Profile
  • Liked: 330
  • Likes Given: 27
Re: Are you hoping for a global civilisational collapse?
« Reply #15 on: August 27, 2019, 07:53:39 AM »
Ecosystem stability is an emergent property of diversity. It doesn't require any sentient actors to be so. Biology is full of such emergent properties. For example, your body is also self regulating (and not due to your consciousness). If it weren't, you couldn't exist. Evolution (and therefore all of life) is an emergent property of the simplest attribute: self-replication.

petm

  • Grease ice
  • Posts: 675
    • View Profile
  • Liked: 330
  • Likes Given: 27
Re: Are you hoping for a global civilisational collapse?
« Reply #16 on: August 27, 2019, 07:58:41 AM »
All very true. But it's not the end of the world (yet) ...

Surely not. Life on Earth most likely won't end for another 5+ billion years. :)

http://www.bbc.com/earth/story/20150323-how-long-will-life-on-earth-last

El Cid

  • Nilas ice
  • Posts: 1103
    • View Profile
  • Liked: 444
  • Likes Given: 87
Re: Are you hoping for a global civilisational collapse?
« Reply #17 on: August 27, 2019, 08:28:48 AM »
back to the question:

It seems to me that many people who post here have a secret death-wish, a desire for an all-out culling that would lead away from the rotten, dirty present and destroy this evil civilization: a Ragnarök as said above. This theme is as old as mankind. I am surprised though that how many seem to subscribe to it...

be cause

  • Moderator
  • Nilas ice
  • Posts: 1313
    • View Profile
  • Liked: 567
  • Likes Given: 417
Re: Are you hoping for a global civilisational collapse?
« Reply #18 on: August 27, 2019, 09:35:35 AM »
I













































































































































hope

















































































not





















































































b.c.
2007 + 5 = 2012 + 4 = 2016 + 3 = 2019 + 2 = 2021 
 (phew)

pietkuip

  • Frazil ice
  • Posts: 293
    • View Profile
  • Liked: 125
  • Likes Given: 230
Re: Are you hoping for a global civilisational collapse?
« Reply #19 on: August 27, 2019, 10:04:07 AM »
I voted that I would expect collapse with decades but is inconceivable to me that we would get to pre-industrial levels within that time period. We still have a lot of hardware that can be macguivered and quite a bit of knowledge.

What I expect is that in 50 years we will be at the level of about 50 years ago. But much less happy.

Neven

  • Administrator
  • First-year ice
  • Posts: 7705
    • View Profile
    • Arctic Sea Ice Blog
  • Liked: 1061
  • Likes Given: 504
Re: Are you hoping for a global civilisational collapse?
« Reply #20 on: August 27, 2019, 10:07:41 AM »
Is there somebody with higher authority than me who could be bothered to make those changes (i.e. add multiple choice and / or allow voters to change their votes).

I've done the latter.
Il faut comparer, comparer, comparer, et cultiver notre jardin

nanning

  • Nilas ice
  • Posts: 2090
  • 0Kg CO₂, 37 KWh/wk,125L H₂O/wk, No offspring
    • View Profile
  • Liked: 323
  • Likes Given: 17452
Re: Are you hoping for a global civilisational collapse?
« Reply #21 on: August 27, 2019, 11:43:28 AM »
<snip>
It seems to me that many people who post here have a secret death-wish, a desire for an all-out culling that would lead away from the rotten, dirty present and destroy this evil civilization

I don't know who you mean but I have been quite outspoken in earlier posts and feel addressed.

I have no secret death-wish, I just don't want to live post-collapse.
This desire you write about is completely alien to me. I am outside civilisation.

You could say that people in civilisation (consumerists) have a secret deathwish because it is destroying itself and all its life support. How about that?  8)
"It is preoccupation with possessions, more than anything else, that prevents us from living freely and nobly" - Bertrand Russell
"It is preoccupation with what other people from your groups think of you, that prevents you from living freely and nobly" - Nanning
Why do you keep accumulating stuff?

pikaia

  • Frazil ice
  • Posts: 324
    • View Profile
  • Liked: 71
  • Likes Given: 38
Re: Are you hoping for a global civilisational collapse?
« Reply #22 on: August 27, 2019, 12:04:07 PM »
A very badly worded question! It is really two questions in one - one about hope, one about expectation. You can hope for collapse, or for no collapse, or not care either way. You can expect collapse, expect no collapse, or not know. There are therefore 3x3 = 9 possible options, but we are only given eight. Some options ask about both questions, some ask about only one. There is no option of hoping for collapse but not expecting it to happen.

Avalonian

  • Frazil ice
  • Posts: 139
    • View Profile
  • Liked: 25
  • Likes Given: 10
Re: Are you hoping for a global civilisational collapse?
« Reply #23 on: August 27, 2019, 12:09:16 PM »
I had problems voting here because I think the concept of collapse as given here is a bit of a straw man. I don't think it likely that it will be Armageddon, with hardly any survivors... but I'm sure there will, at some point, be a major reduction in population, and a reversion to a largely agrarian society in places that aren't used to such lifestyles. Many indigenous cultures will carry on, under trying conditions. What I expect to be the main symptom of collapse is the loss of the framework that allows intensive industrial civilisation. First there will be food shortages, then public unrest and lawlessness, then a new equilibrum will emerge later. The skills and knowledge to survive as sustainable communities still exist, although yes, life would be less comfortable. And yes, I expect this to happen (at least in part) within a few decades.

The alternative is that we get very clever and efficient with land usage and high-technology solutions, concentrating our efforts and farming into the increasingly limited livable areas, while driving ecosystems worldwide to extinction. Industrial production of nutritious slime and battery farming based on artificial feed, while the forests burn and the oceans turn anoxic. That, to me, is the worst-case scenario. I don't want to live in a world where we destroy everything that isn't useful to us, in order to preserve ludicrously unsustainable numbers of ourselves.

uniquorn

  • Nilas ice
  • Posts: 2478
    • View Profile
  • Liked: 1343
  • Likes Given: 221
Re: Are you hoping for a global civilisational collapse?
« Reply #24 on: August 27, 2019, 12:09:52 PM »
Why is this in Arctic sea ice section?

Paddy

  • Grease ice
  • Posts: 641
    • View Profile
  • Liked: 48
  • Likes Given: 53
Re: Are you hoping for a global civilisational collapse?
« Reply #25 on: August 27, 2019, 12:19:35 PM »
I went for a straight "I hope not". I'm not going to try to predict events decades in the future. Some parts of our global civilisation may see major stress in the fairly near future (eg Britain post Brexit), but we've seen big chunks of the world go through major stress without global civilisational collapse (eg Russua post USSR). What I'd expect is that the locus of power may swing... firstly towards China, and then, as China ages, towards the next rising power, whomsoever that may be. Which will be difficult for the Western world to reconcile to, but not global collapse difficult.

I think it would need something like global thermonuclear war to trigger global collapse. Not just increasing food and water stress etc... civilisation has weathered these storms on a local level many times before.

Why is this in Arctic sea ice section?

Good question.


kassy

  • Nilas ice
  • Posts: 2212
    • View Profile
  • Liked: 1175
  • Likes Given: 909
Re: Are you hoping for a global civilisational collapse?
« Reply #26 on: August 27, 2019, 12:24:19 PM »
Our current civilization is much more ´evil´ then needed. Basically societies work better with a less skewered wealth distribution and we could manage our resources in a better way.

We are threatening ourselves by:
Causing the disappearance of Arctic ice on some time frame. Current effects on global weather with stuck weather patterns are already causing havoc.

Making huge areas of land nearly unlivable because they are too hot. So the people living there will move to some other place.

Rising global temps also mean less and less snowcover which means less meltwater for rivers that are already stressed because they have to service so many cities and industry and agriculture.

Our agriculture is not sustainable because we are losing the soil.

We are still happily overfishing.

We are still cutting down forests for palm oil or to get to rare earths (in the Congo) or a bunch of other reasons (Amazon).

Then there is this sea level rise thingy.

Basically we have to work together more and use some really hard caps not just accounting like measures.

We are well on our way to ruin our carbon sinks and it will be interesting to see what the change from the great greening to the great browning will do.

So i am not hoping for it but we do too little. Too much effort put into making more $$$ or avoiding painful measures before re-elections.

And the world is interconnected. Much of the medicins in the US come from 1 region in India so if there is a problem there that stops the production that will be felt immediately.
If the levees near Louisiana collapse so the river there changes course that knocks out the industry there with all kinds of interesting global repercussions. I think that would take out the shipping route for a lot of US grain. 

All these are in themselves just cracks but a lot of cracks connecting up in a proper way can lead to collapse.

And if not collapse then future generations will still face a harsher more depleted world.

So i am not hoping for it but i can totally understand people being frustrated with our collective efforts so far.

And i bet that if we were talking at some bar we could easily agree that when i (for example) would wish for global collapse i actually mean the collapse of the current dominant model putting people over profit. And that does not mean ill will to sustance farmers or the masses of poor trying to make a living in the big cities because various types of exploitation forced them out of their home grounds. But these people are already the victims of our current global civilization.

Þetta minnismerki er til vitnis um að við vitum hvað er að gerast og hvað þarf að gera. Aðeins þú veist hvort við gerðum eitthvað.

kassy

  • Nilas ice
  • Posts: 2212
    • View Profile
  • Liked: 1175
  • Likes Given: 909
Re: Are you hoping for a global civilisational collapse?
« Reply #27 on: August 27, 2019, 12:26:01 PM »
Why is this in Arctic sea ice section?

This is the continuation of this locked slightly more relevant to ice thread:
https://forum.arctic-sea-ice.net/index.php/topic,2887.0.html

Þetta minnismerki er til vitnis um að við vitum hvað er að gerast og hvað þarf að gera. Aðeins þú veist hvort við gerðum eitthvað.

binntho

  • Nilas ice
  • Posts: 1387
    • View Profile
  • Liked: 451
  • Likes Given: 106
Re: Are you hoping for a global civilisational collapse?
« Reply #28 on: August 27, 2019, 12:45:30 PM »
Why is this in Arctic sea ice section?
Exactly! Which is presumably why Neven has moved it.
because a thing is eloquently expressed it should not be taken to be as necessarily true
St. Augustine, Confessions V, 6

Neven

  • Administrator
  • First-year ice
  • Posts: 7705
    • View Profile
    • Arctic Sea Ice Blog
  • Liked: 1061
  • Likes Given: 504
Re: Are you hoping for a global civilisational collapse?
« Reply #29 on: August 27, 2019, 12:48:48 PM »
Yup, hadn't noticed it.
Il faut comparer, comparer, comparer, et cultiver notre jardin

aslan

  • Frazil ice
  • Posts: 155
    • View Profile
  • Liked: 63
  • Likes Given: 0
Re: Are you hoping for a global civilisational collapse?
« Reply #30 on: August 27, 2019, 02:01:34 PM »
It is ongoing, but I am not hoping for it, just preparing and praying the Lord. And reading ancient books from the late Roman Empire. But I am not a big fan of the world "collapse". Collapse will not happens instantly nor globally, but is an already ongoing step downward trend with some periods of temporary improvements, being better or worst here and there, and it is not going to be a global catastrophe over a day or so. https://books.google.fr/books?id=M4H-02d9oE0C&redir_esc=y Humans are often fascinated by big catastrophes, but the collapse of a civilization never followed this path.

Quote
I had problems voting here because I think the concept of collapse as given here is a bit of a straw man. I don't think it likely that it will be Armageddon, with hardly any survivors... but I'm sure there will, at some point, be a major reduction in population, and a reversion to a largely agrarian society in places that aren't used to such lifestyles. Many indigenous cultures will carry on, under trying conditions. What I expect to be the main symptom of collapse is the loss of the framework that allows intensive industrial civilisation. First there will be food shortages, then public unrest and lawlessness, then a new equilibrum will emerge later. The skills and knowledge to survive as sustainable communities still exist, although yes, life would be less comfortable. And yes, I expect this to happen (at least in part) within a few decades.

I fully agree. I am trying to build a sustainable community in my neighborhood, reviving ancient practices from the past.

P-maker

  • Frazil ice
  • Posts: 290
    • View Profile
  • Liked: 50
  • Likes Given: 0
Re: Are you hoping for a global civilisational collapse?
« Reply #31 on: August 27, 2019, 03:07:53 PM »
Just came back from a trip to Trier, DE. That's where the Romans tried to build a stronghold around 300 AD. Perfect, idealistic designs and architecture with hot and cold baths. I guess you could call it a wellness resort in those days,  when the roman soldiers had to fight types likes Asterix and Obelix.

It turns out, it was impossible for the romans to heat all those hot tubs. They may have run out of fuel or run out of slaves, to feed the furnaces. We will never know.

The thing is, when the socalled Roman civilization ran out of steam in the fifth century, the Vikings apparently came on stage. Rude, barbarian opportunists had a feast all over NW Europe. They did not care about hot tubs (except if they followed the Icelandic tradition of geothermal baths). They did not follow the straight roads of the Roman Empire. They basically "followed the winds" and migrated to wherever it took them.

One of these places was Greenland. And here their problems - and final demise - began. Multi-year Arctic sea ice came down the East coast of Greenland and made their lives miserable. Basically, archaeological investigations show, they died with their flies in the back end of their stables, because they were unable to move with the winds. They thought they were farmers stuck to the land, but they forgot they were adventurous descendants from the Vikings, made to evade dangers  through modern mobility schemes.

Now, the questions are: Did these socalled civilizations succeed each other?. Did they compete at any time in history?. Did they ever fight? In my humble opinion, they had the time to develop and flourish at their own speed. Noone were pushing them. Their adventures were no less planned than a modern holiday in Europe. They had plenty of time to adapt.

Now, we have less than a few decades to make all these civilizational interactions occur. We have not all the abilities to apply appropriate learning and adaptation opportunities. We just need to get on with our lives. Learning, as we go along. Remember history as well as we can, recalling that both Romans and Vikings taught us something about life. It is just a question of remembering the right bits.

nanning

  • Nilas ice
  • Posts: 2090
  • 0Kg CO₂, 37 KWh/wk,125L H₂O/wk, No offspring
    • View Profile
  • Liked: 323
  • Likes Given: 17452
Re: Are you hoping for a global civilisational collapse?
« Reply #32 on: August 27, 2019, 08:23:57 PM »
Our current civilization is much more ´evil´ then needed. Basically societies work better with a less skewered wealth distribution and we could manage our resources in a better way.

We are threatening ourselves by:
Causing the disappearance of Arctic ice on some time frame. Current effects on global weather with stuck weather patterns are already causing havoc.

Making huge areas of land nearly unlivable because they are too hot. So the people living there will move to some other place.

Rising global temps also mean less and less snowcover which means less meltwater for rivers that are already stressed because they have to service so many cities and industry and agriculture.

Our agriculture is not sustainable because we are losing the soil.

We are still happily overfishing.

We are still cutting down forests for palm oil or to get to rare earths (in the Congo) or a bunch of other reasons (Amazon).

Then there is this sea level rise thingy.

Basically we have to work together more and use some really hard caps not just accounting like measures.

We are well on our way to ruin our carbon sinks and it will be interesting to see what the change from the great greening to the great browning will do.

So i am not hoping for it but we do too little. Too much effort put into making more $$$ or avoiding painful measures before re-elections.

And the world is interconnected. Much of the medicins in the US come from 1 region in India so if there is a problem there that stops the production that will be felt immediately.
If the levees near Louisiana collapse so the river there changes course that knocks out the industry there with all kinds of interesting global repercussions. I think that would take out the shipping route for a lot of US grain. 

All these are in themselves just cracks but a lot of cracks connecting up in a proper way can lead to collapse.

And if not collapse then future generations will still face a harsher more depleted world.

So i am not hoping for it but i can totally understand people being frustrated with our collective efforts so far.

And i bet that if we were talking at some bar we could easily agree that when i (for example) would wish for global collapse i actually mean the collapse of the current dominant model putting people over profit. And that does not mean ill will to sustance farmers or the masses of poor trying to make a living in the big cities because various types of exploitation forced them out of their home grounds. But these people are already the victims of our current global civilization.

to add to kassy's great compiled list above:

- Vulnerability by globalisation:
     Almost all the products we buy are made from primary/secondary resources and product-parts that came from all over the world. All relevant industries and shops for that one product are for their operation again dependent on other industries from all over the world ETC(!).

Something to ponder: Do you expect that everywhere in the western world, local societies and especially those in big cities (!) can make a relatively fast switch to completely local production? (I think not)

- Pandemic. Anti-biotic resistance.
"It is preoccupation with possessions, more than anything else, that prevents us from living freely and nobly" - Bertrand Russell
"It is preoccupation with what other people from your groups think of you, that prevents you from living freely and nobly" - Nanning
Why do you keep accumulating stuff?

TerryM

  • First-year ice
  • Posts: 6002
    • View Profile
  • Liked: 900
  • Likes Given: 5
Re: Are you hoping for a global civilisational collapse?
« Reply #33 on: August 27, 2019, 09:23:54 PM »
My vote was simply for I hope not.
Do I think hoping will make it so? - No way in hell!


By Boom or by Gloom
Our unsustainable civilization can't be sustained, so it will end.
If we don't pull the plug by blowing it to hell.
The plug won't be powered. Civilization is a power hungry entity that will devour its own to feed.


Terry

bbr2314

  • Nilas ice
  • Posts: 1817
    • View Profile
  • Liked: 165
  • Likes Given: 53
Re: Are you hoping for a global civilisational collapse?
« Reply #34 on: August 27, 2019, 09:53:32 PM »
Where is the evidence for societies working well with "less skewered wealth distribution"? In essence this means everyone is poor.

Rome was exceedingly unequal and it was the greatest empire the planet had seen before the rise of the United States. Both of these empires have things in common and wealth inequality is one of them.

Concentrated wealth allows decisions to be made with oomph and power, it also limits the degree to which a strong federal government can turn on its citizens as the ruling class usually has sufficient capital to prevent dictatorship, though that results in oligarchy.

Look at Sweden, Denmark, Norway today -- are these great nations? Or do they coddle their citizens, churning out obedient comfortable potatoes of humans with no real thoughts or passions or drives on their own, while relying on hordes of immigrant laborers who are simultaneously destroying their societies from the inside out?

I would argue they are silly little countries that will exist as skidmarks in a history book, if they are mentioned at all in another 1,000 years. That will not be the case for Rome, or the United States.

As to the question at hand --

I see anecdotes about the baths at Trier somehow being evidence that Rome collapsed. It did not. The Roman government became divided and then splintered, but the Eastern Empire lasted until the Fifteenth Century. Even more enduring is the Catholic Church, which has persisted for almost 2,000 years, and which best represents the decentralization of power away from Roman government and into the hands of private citizens. It never collapsed, it may have had waxing and waning and schisms and such, but it counts a billion or two adherents today, which is certainly more than the global population at the time of Rome's existence.

So, I would say that the notion we have of collapse is often incorrect, and the ideas over what would stave it off are also typically useless when plebes talk about "inequality" or whatever being the bane of Empire. Inequality is good for everyone who is interested in building character, it is good for raising the poor up to be rich, and for tearing the existing rich people down when they are too lazy, which is when those who work hard enough due to "general inequality" take their place. Wealth is cyclical, even the Rockefellers etc are destined for poverty within a century or two -- how many of the patrician families of Rome remain relevant 2,000 years later?

Neven

  • Administrator
  • First-year ice
  • Posts: 7705
    • View Profile
    • Arctic Sea Ice Blog
  • Liked: 1061
  • Likes Given: 504
Re: Are you hoping for a global civilisational collapse?
« Reply #35 on: August 27, 2019, 10:10:25 PM »
I would argue they are silly little countries that will exist as skidmarks in a history book, if they are mentioned at all in another 1,000 years. That will not be the case for Rome, or the United States.

I absolutely agree that psychopaths are well-remembered, unlike peaceful and humble people who have attained a higher level of wisdom.

I'd rather be small and silly, than get an erection from projecting myself unto the 'powerful'.

Quote
Inequality is good for everyone who is interested in building character

Yes, but inequality becomes bad for everyone, when it becomes limitless.

When it becomes limitless, collapse ensues. And then things start over again. A vicious cycle of stupidity and other lower vices.
Il faut comparer, comparer, comparer, et cultiver notre jardin

TerryM

  • First-year ice
  • Posts: 6002
    • View Profile
  • Liked: 900
  • Likes Given: 5
Re: Are you hoping for a global civilisational collapse?
« Reply #36 on: August 27, 2019, 10:15:00 PM »
bbr
Didn't you skip over quite a few really large empires that came between the time of the Romans and the American Empire?
Terry

bbr2314

  • Nilas ice
  • Posts: 1817
    • View Profile
  • Liked: 165
  • Likes Given: 53
Re: Are you hoping for a global civilisational collapse?
« Reply #37 on: August 27, 2019, 10:19:46 PM »
I would argue they are silly little countries that will exist as skidmarks in a history book, if they are mentioned at all in another 1,000 years. That will not be the case for Rome, or the United States.

I absolutely agree that psychopaths are well-remembered, unlike peaceful and humble people who have attained a higher level of wisdom.

I'd rather be small and silly, than get an erection from projecting myself unto the 'powerful'.

Quote
Inequality is good for everyone who is interested in building character

Yes, but inequality becomes bad for everyone, when it becomes limitless.

When it becomes limitless, collapse ensues. And then things start over again. A vicious cycle of stupidity and other lower vices.

But is there any changing that? Even if we get to the stage of Galactic Empire, there will be collapse and rebirth -- this is just the way things are. I think it is better to be on the yo-yo that has typified all existence forever (and is likely to typify all existence in the future) than to pretend we can subsist on equilibrium.

Comfort does no good for innovation, or ultimately SURVIVAL. Comfort is weakness. Comfort is death. Paradoxically, cyclical rebirth and collapse is ultimately better than simple comfort as the innovations provided by desperation / etc are real, tangible, and useful. What does comfort provide -- a bogus universal healthcare system based on the profits of corporations raping the developing world? (looking at Sweden)

It is also interesting that Sweden Denmark and Norway are all Kingdoms with little Royals remaining in power. How equal is that? Does the "equality" in these countries and resulting "potato-ness" of their general citizenry serve the citizens, or does it serve the royals, allowing a political system that "liberals" have always been against to survive intact into the twenty-first century? If there is never any systemic change and everyone is comfortable, that is surprisingly beneficial to the rich, as they will always be kept in that condition thanks to the way government works (leeching taxes out of everyone else and redistributing to the top .1% in the form of corporate welfare, or straight-up welfare in the case of the royals).

There is NOTHING fair or just about a county that takes 50% of the wages of its hardest working citizens while leaving the rich people cocooned in a social net that results in permanent social status for all involved. That is NOT fair. But I cannot say that many people would rather be comfortable potatoes than hard-working individuals subject to the terrors and torments of everyday life, which should be appreciated for the character-building experiences they are, rather than maligned and relegated to the history books alongside innovation and everything beneficial that is derivative of real hardship.

Finally, we talk about how we have too many people etc -- maybe this is why humans have psychopaths genetically embedded into our populations. At some point someone will need to pull the trigger on a correction, lest the "peaceful and humble people" who have "attained a higher level of wisdom" overpopulate and destroy the planet. How wise is that? LOL.

bbr2314

  • Nilas ice
  • Posts: 1817
    • View Profile
  • Liked: 165
  • Likes Given: 53
Re: Are you hoping for a global civilisational collapse?
« Reply #38 on: August 27, 2019, 10:21:47 PM »
bbr
Didn't you skip over quite a few really large empires that came between the time of the Romans and the American Empire?
Terry
I was debating whether to include the British, so maybe we can include them, but I don't think any Empire besides the USA and Rome has been truly hegemonic. Even the British were always dealing with the French or the Spanish (the other contenders for "great" Empires). I think one must evaluate the scope / influence of every other Empire contemporaneous with the greats, and this is why (IMO) the USA & Rome are above the rest (and probably the British as well, at least after 1800).

Neven

  • Administrator
  • First-year ice
  • Posts: 7705
    • View Profile
    • Arctic Sea Ice Blog
  • Liked: 1061
  • Likes Given: 504
Re: Are you hoping for a global civilisational collapse?
« Reply #39 on: August 27, 2019, 10:38:05 PM »
Quote
But I cannot say that many people would rather be comfortable potatoes than hard-working individuals subject to the terrors and torments of everyday life, which should be appreciated for the character-building experiences they are, rather than maligned and relegated to the history books alongside innovation and everything beneficial that is derivative of real hardship.

I do hope you realise you are talking about yourself here as well. Unless you're Genghis Khan or some such. Everybody on this forum is a comfortable potato.  ;D

Quote
Even if we get to the stage of Galactic Empire

There won't be anything after this global civilisational collapse if we don't break through the vicious cycle. It's like Carl Sagan said (paraphrased): Either we get our shit together and start exploring space, or we destroy our only home to the point that we can never leave it again.
Il faut comparer, comparer, comparer, et cultiver notre jardin

KiwiGriff

  • Grease ice
  • Posts: 755
    • View Profile
  • Liked: 424
  • Likes Given: 127
Re: Are you hoping for a global civilisational collapse?
« Reply #40 on: August 27, 2019, 10:54:06 PM »
I see someone does not understand what a democratic monarchy is.
The monarchy in a modern democracy has no real power unlike the USA and its broken Democratic system.

We do have ways of measuring such things as freedom.
In none of them is the USA leading .
https://www.heritage.org/index/ranking
https://rsf.org/en/ranking_table
http://www.oecdbetterlifeindex.org/#/11111111111
https://freedomhouse.org/report/freedom-world/freedom-world-2019/map
http://www.eiu.com/home.aspx

USA exceptionalism......keep believing in it while you are getting screwed.
“If you are part of a society that votes, then do so. There may be no candidates and no measures you want to vote for ... but there are certain to be ones you want to vote against. In case of doubt, vote against. By this rule you will rarely go wrong.”

― Robert A. Heinlein, Time Enough for Love

TerryM

  • First-year ice
  • Posts: 6002
    • View Profile
  • Liked: 900
  • Likes Given: 5
Re: Are you hoping for a global civilisational collapse?
« Reply #41 on: August 27, 2019, 10:56:51 PM »
Neven
I can't imagine that you'd approve of Sagan's dream of an ever expanding Human Race with planet after planet falling victim to our rapacious needs. It's identical to the Capitalist Manifesto demanding growth or death.
The very system that you've railed against for so long. :-\


If we can't satisfy our needs and wants here where we evolved, what makes you believe that we'd do better elsewhere?
Terry

bbr2314

  • Nilas ice
  • Posts: 1817
    • View Profile
  • Liked: 165
  • Likes Given: 53
Re: Are you hoping for a global civilisational collapse?
« Reply #42 on: August 27, 2019, 10:59:20 PM »
I see someone does not understand what a democratic monarchy is.
The monarchy in a modern democracy has no real power unlike the USA and its broken Democratic system.

We do have ways of measuring such things as freedom.
In none of them is the USA leading .
https://www.heritage.org/index/ranking
https://rsf.org/en/ranking_table
http://www.oecdbetterlifeindex.org/#/11111111111
https://freedomhouse.org/report/freedom-world/freedom-world-2019/map
http://www.eiu.com/home.aspx

USA exceptionalism......keep believing in it while you are getting screwed.

Those measures are all garbage produced by garbage NGOs that work for garbage rich people.

The U.S is not a democracy, it is a republic, so your initial argument here is based on a fallacy.

I am well aware of the concept of a "democratic monarchy" and I am here to tell you it is nonsense. I described why it is nonsense in my previous post but obviously you disagree, and that is fine.

sedziobs

  • Frazil ice
  • Posts: 386
    • View Profile
  • Liked: 66
  • Likes Given: 12
Re: Are you hoping for a global civilisational collapse?
« Reply #43 on: August 27, 2019, 11:08:18 PM »
bbr
Didn't you skip over quite a few really large empires that came between the time of the Romans and the American Empire?
Terry
I was debating whether to include the British, so maybe we can include them, but I don't think any Empire besides the USA and Rome has been truly hegemonic.
Ottomans?
Great Qing?
Mughals?

Neven

  • Administrator
  • First-year ice
  • Posts: 7705
    • View Profile
    • Arctic Sea Ice Blog
  • Liked: 1061
  • Likes Given: 504
Re: Are you hoping for a global civilisational collapse?
« Reply #44 on: August 27, 2019, 11:12:40 PM »
Neven
I can't imagine that you'd approve of Sagan's dream of an ever expanding Human Race with planet after planet falling victim to our rapacious needs. It's identical to the Capitalist Manifesto demanding growth or death.
The very system that you've railed against for so long. :-\


If we can't satisfy our needs and wants here where we evolved, what makes you believe that we'd do better elsewhere?
Terry

Well, we won't make it to other places if we don't get our shit together, to keep paraphrasing. Maybe if humankind would get its shit together, it wouldn't go on a rampage through the galaxy and beyond?

But other that that, I agree with you. If we don't get our shit together, but still manage to colonise Mars somehow, we'd get a Terra-Mars war within a millenium. It would all start when the president of Terra wouldn't appeal to a certain group. They would insist that he is a Mars-churian candidate and that those horrible Martians hacked Terra systems, even the ones under everyone's bed. They'd call the whole thing Marsgate.
Il faut comparer, comparer, comparer, et cultiver notre jardin

Neven

  • Administrator
  • First-year ice
  • Posts: 7705
    • View Profile
    • Arctic Sea Ice Blog
  • Liked: 1061
  • Likes Given: 504
Re: Are you hoping for a global civilisational collapse?
« Reply #45 on: August 27, 2019, 11:13:13 PM »
bbr
Didn't you skip over quite a few really large empires that came between the time of the Romans and the American Empire?
Terry
I was debating whether to include the British, so maybe we can include them, but I don't think any Empire besides the USA and Rome has been truly hegemonic.
Ottomans?
Great Qing?
Mughals?

Sorry, no Hollywood movies, don't count.
Il faut comparer, comparer, comparer, et cultiver notre jardin

KiwiGriff

  • Grease ice
  • Posts: 755
    • View Profile
  • Liked: 424
  • Likes Given: 127
Re: Are you hoping for a global civilisational collapse?
« Reply #46 on: August 27, 2019, 11:16:00 PM »
Quote
Those measures are all garbage produced by garbage NGOs that work for garbage rich people.

The U.S is not a democracy, it is a republic, so your initial argument here is based on a fallacy.

I am well aware of the concept of a "democratic monarchy" and I am here to tell you it is nonsense. I described why it is nonsense in my previous post but obviously you disagree, and that is fine.
;D
PIDOOMA

“If you are part of a society that votes, then do so. There may be no candidates and no measures you want to vote for ... but there are certain to be ones you want to vote against. In case of doubt, vote against. By this rule you will rarely go wrong.”

― Robert A. Heinlein, Time Enough for Love

bbr2314

  • Nilas ice
  • Posts: 1817
    • View Profile
  • Liked: 165
  • Likes Given: 53
Re: Are you hoping for a global civilisational collapse?
« Reply #47 on: August 27, 2019, 11:36:45 PM »
bbr
Didn't you skip over quite a few really large empires that came between the time of the Romans and the American Empire?
Terry
I was debating whether to include the British, so maybe we can include them, but I don't think any Empire besides the USA and Rome has been truly hegemonic.
Ottomans?
Great Qing?
Mughals?
They were all regional powers. I think the differentiating factor between Rome / GB / US is they were the primary power across 50%+ of the known world at the time.

The Chinese have always been inward-looking, the Ottomans were certainly a great power but they were not globally hegemonic, and the Mughals were similar.

I think each of the aforementioned examples also were helpful to the evolution of civilization, but they didn't really involve *expanding* the boundaries of civilization. Rome, GB, and the US have all actively and dramatically expanded the frontiers of civilization itself, in a way, I would say Rome laid the groundwork for GB's ascent, which laid the groundwork for the rise of the US.

I would surmise this is also a function of each of the latter group being "outward focused," i.e., aggressively expansionary.

TerryM

  • First-year ice
  • Posts: 6002
    • View Profile
  • Liked: 900
  • Likes Given: 5
Re: Are you hoping for a global civilisational collapse?
« Reply #48 on: August 28, 2019, 12:13:09 AM »
Neven
I can't imagine that you'd approve of Sagan's dream of an ever expanding Human Race with planet after planet falling victim to our rapacious needs. It's identical to the Capitalist Manifesto demanding growth or death.
The very system that you've railed against for so long. :-\


If we can't satisfy our needs and wants here where we evolved, what makes you believe that we'd do better elsewhere?
Terry

Well, we won't make it to other places if we don't get our shit together, to keep paraphrasing. Maybe if humankind would get its shit together, it wouldn't go on a rampage through the galaxy and beyond?

But other that that, I agree with you. If we don't get our shit together, but still manage to colonise Mars somehow, we'd get a Terra-Mars war within a millenium. It would all start when the president of Terra wouldn't appeal to a certain group. They would insist that he is a Mars-churian candidate and that those horrible Martians hacked Terra systems, even the ones under everyone's bed. They'd call the whole thing Marsgate.


The Marsupian Supreme Ruler - Der Elon, as per Von Braun's pioneering work, might respond with V3 Starhoppers, silently flooding Terran airwaves with satellite beamed images of Marauding Martians, Goose Stepping into our FatherLand from their Mother(goose?)Land.


While Wherner never indicated whether an outstretched, downturned right hand would be the proper form when addressing Der Elon. It's reasonable to assume that this would be so.
Are Marsupians our interplanetary future?
Will we be able to Trump this coming Alien Invasion?
Stay tuned for the next Adventures of Der Musk et Man.T.M. ;D
Terry

vox_mundi

  • Young ice
  • Posts: 3539
    • View Profile
  • Liked: 2098
  • Likes Given: 285
Re: Are you hoping for a global civilisational collapse?
« Reply #49 on: August 28, 2019, 12:45:59 AM »
“There are three classes of people: those who see. Those who see when they are shown. Those who do not see.” ― Leonardo da Vinci

Insensible before the wave so soon released by callous fate. Affected most, they understand the least, and understanding, when it comes, invariably arrives too late