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Monday August 12th 2019Tim Candler9

 

    At each end of the continuum there are two opposite reactions to the challenges presented by the changing climate. At the one end is "we could do something about it if we wanted to" and at the other end is "we can't do anything about it even if we wanted to." Then there are the anomalies which range from "someone in a garage somewhere will come up with a solution" to the "whole thing's a hoax." Meanwhile around the world societies are dependant upon their political class to determine a direction. And one of the things about the political class is that while they are subject to ebb and flow, their ebb and flow is usually about ten to twenty years behind the ebb and flow as it is experienced by the population. In another way they always arrive late to the party. All sorts of arguments about why this might be, but essentially most politicians lead from behind. Only when they are certain that they have sufficient support will they claim ownership of this or that description of the present, and usually by the time they claim ownership the present has moved on. And you can look at how a politician's choices are determined by his or sources of funding, if he or she has major donor, keeping that major donor happy is rather central to a politicians longevity and some times moving on with the times, aggravates donors and supporters alike. And too, there's the whole question of economics which so long as an economy is expanding has become a panacea for all ills and a total blight on imaginative solutions. Then there's this whole mystic idea of progress as being a sort inevitable process that just sort happens, an odd way to conceptualize the passing of time, a little deceitful, I'd argue but good cover for all kinds of totally static ideas, I imagine the vast bulky dinosaur all full of him or herself would have a sneer for their tinier relatives who as it happens are still with us, they have two legs, most fly around, they lay eggs and have feathers and some of them have the problem solving capacity of a seven year old human.

 

Past

    Given these tendencies it's almost inevitable that in it's reactions to a changing climate and the immense pressure this will put upon resources of sustenance around the world, society will have to rely upon itself to meet the challenge rather than sit back and wait for solutions to immerge, and the thing is over the past three or four thousand years the complexity of society has become such that it needs leadership through which to express purpose and intent, otherwise we individuals are more like headless Chickens. And when we're don't feel like headless Chickens our sense of powerlessness inclines us to think of ourselves as a bunch of Milk Cows being badly abused. Refugees, those who flee war, violence or natural disaster are people who have decided to do something about their lot, they leave what was their home to find somewhere new to live. Other lands less riven by distress offer hope. Other lands however would like to help, but when they do help the reaction within a society that helps tends to encourage a wholly nationalist reaction that thrives on a xenophobia and is exacerbated by the political class, sometimes exaggerated to the point of being complete fiction. When it comes to your own turf, your own kin if you prefer, non-kin sharing much as it would like to doesn't appear to rise to the occasion with open arms in each one of us. I guess non-kin sharing is a more transactional part of our being, but at the same time if as beings we make meaning, then the vicissitudes on societies from a changing climate around the world gives the diversity of social structures and meanings around the world a chance to shatter old meanings and make new meanings, many of which will be bleak, some will be brutal, some will make sense, some will work, some won't. Being all the same, is like having you're saviors in one basket. It's our diversity of cultures and minds that makes us what we become and has done so for many, many thousands of years.

 

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