This episode I’m joined by Rupert Read is an academicand a Green Party campaigner and a former spokesperson for Extinction Rebellion). In this episode we discuss the end of civilization, collapse, sustainable energy and more…
Industrial civilisation has no future. It requires limitless economic growth on a finite planet. The reckless combustion of fossil fuels means that Earth’s climate is changing disastrously, in ways that cannot be resolved by piecemeal reform or technological innovation. Sooner rather than later this global capitalist system will come to an end, destroyed by its own ecological contradictions. Unless humanity does something beautiful and unprecedented, the ending of industrial civilisation will take the form of collapse, which could mean a harrowing die-off of billions of people.
This book is for those ready to accept the full gravity of the human predicament – and to consider what in the world is to be done. How can humanity mindfully navigate the inevitable descent ahead? Two critical thinkers here remove the rose-tinted glasses of much social and environmental commentary. With unremitting realism and yet defiant positivity, they engage each other in uncomfortable conversations about the end of Empire and what lies beyond.
Global changes are altering where and how we get fresh water, sparking the need for worldwide cooperation
The availability of fresh water is rapidly changing all over the world, creating a tenuous future that requires attention from policymakers and the public.
We know this thanks to 14 years’ worth of satellite data collected by a unique NASA Earth-observing mission called the Gravity Recovery and Climate Experiment—which has the gratifying acronym GRACE. Unlike some satellite missions that rely on images, GRACE, which was launched in 2002 and decommissioned at the end of 2017, was more a “scale in the sky.” It measured the very tiny space-time variations in Earth’s gravity field, effectively weighing changes in water mass over large river basins and groundwater aquifers—those porous, subterranean rock and soil layers that store water that must be pumped to the surface.
As complex as that sounds, the results are actually quite simple to understand. The data quantified the rates at which all regions on Earth are gaining or losing water, allowing my colleagues and me to produce the accompanying map. And what the map shows is also simple to understand but deeply troubling: Water security—a phrase that simply means having access to sufficient quantities of safe water for our daily lives—is at a greater risk than most people realize.
Katharine Hayhoe says the world is heading for dangers people have not seen in 10,000 years of civilisation
The world cannot adapt its way out of the climate crisis, and counting on adaptation to limit damage is no substitute for urgently cutting greenhouse gases, a leading climate scientist has warned.
Katharine Hayhoe, chief scientist for the Nature Conservancy in the US and professor at Texas Tech University, said the world was heading for dangers unseen in the 10,000 years of human civilisation, and efforts to make the world more resilient were needed but by themselves could not soften the impact enough.
“People do not understand the magnitude of what is going on,” she said. “This will be greater than anything we have ever seen in the past. This will be unprecedented. Every living thing will be affected.”
Massive food producers hold too much power – and the regulators scarcely understand what is happening. Sound familiar?
For the past few years, scientists have been frantically sounding an alarm that governments refuse to hear: the global food system is beginning to look like the global financial system in the run-up to 2008.
While financial collapse would have been devastating to human welfare, food system collapse doesn’t bear thinking about. Yet the evidence that something is going badly wrong has been escalating rapidly. The current surge in food prices looks like the latest sign of systemic instability.
Susan Zakin’s writing is brilliant and irreverent, tough and funny, opinionated and sometimes outrageous But this is also a serious work, the most thorough and thoughtful survey of the American environmental movement I have seen.
Brad Knickerbocker, The Christian Science Monitor
Catches the rowdy, passionate utopianism of the first non-elite generation of environmentalists. They changed the game, and woke a lot of people up.
Gary Snyder, Pultizer-Prize winning poet, Turtle Island, Practice of the Wild
A primer for how to face our Earth’s predicament with wit and courage…Funny, smart, irreverent, opinionated and always mind-expanding.
Bill McKibben, author, The End of Nature, founder 350.org
Critics say their content is dangerous and irresponsible, but these influencers can’t get enough of the train-hopping life.
Dancer vividly remembers the first time he hopped a freight train.
It was a warm October day in 2020, and he’d stationed himself north of Longmont, Colorado, near the railway yard, where the train often rolls through town. He’d been standing next to a tree for hours, debating whether he was really going to go through with this dangerous act — and trying to ease the butterflies in his stomach.
He’d learned about train-hopping in 2017, after discovering the videos of James “Jim” Stobie, a prolific vlogger known online as Stobe the Hobo. Stobie died later that same year, after getting into an accident while hopping trains in Maryland. He was 33. Nevertheless, Dancer was inspired by the key message of Stobie’s videos: that viewers should see the often-unexplored areas of the U.S.
The reign of the Hero has come to an end. As humanity faces increasing crisis and collapse, we come to a threshold where the archetype of the Hero can no longer be our saviour. We have entered a liminal time – a space between stories – and so we must bend and instead look to, and learn from, the boundary-crossing, shape-shifting Trickster.
Join Ben Murphy and John Wolfstone as they explore the significance of this cultural transition and how it applies to each of our lives.
In this deeply researched work of speculative nonfiction that reads like Ezra Klein’s Why We’re Polarized crossed with David Wallace-Wells’ The Uninhabitable Earth, a celebrated journalist takes a fiercely divided America and imagines five chilling scenarios that lead to its collapse, based on in-depth interviews with experts of all kinds.
On a small two-lane bridge in a rural county that loathes the federal government, the US Army uses lethal force to end a standoff with hard-right anti-government patriots. Inside an ordinary diner, a disaffected young man with a handgun takes aim at the American president stepping in for an impromptu photo-op, and a bullet splits the hyper-partisan country into violently opposed mourners and revelers. In New York City, a Category 2 hurricane plunges entire neighborhoods underwater and creates millions of refugees overnight—a blow that comes on the heels of a financial crash and years of catastrophic droughts— and tips America over the edge into ruin.
These nightmarish scenarios are just three of the five possibilities most likely to spark devastating chaos in the United States that are brought to life in The Next Civil War, a chilling and deeply researched work of speculative nonfiction. Drawing upon sophisticated predictive models and nearly two hundred interviews with experts—civil war scholars, military leaders, law enforcement officials, secret service agents, agricultural specialists, environmentalists, war historians, and political scientists—journalist Stephen Marche predicts the terrifying future collapse that so many of us do not want to see unfolding in front of our eyes. Marche has spoken with soldiers and counterinsurgency experts about what it would take to control the population of the United States, and the battle plans for the next civil war have already been drawn up. Not by novelists, but by colonels.
No matter your political leaning, most of us can sense that America is barreling toward catastrophe—of one kind or another. Relevant and revelatory, The Next Civil War plainly breaks down the looming threats to America and is a must-read for anyone concerned about the future of its people, its land, and its government.
This week we interview David Skrbina, an author and professor who writes about his anti-technology philosphy. David has written a book with Ted Kazynski (the Unabomber) who holds a similar philosophy.
In the interview, we discuss David’s philosophy, his vision for the future, as well as his book with Ted Kazynski.
You can find his books here: Confronting Technology, Metaphysics of Technology, Technological Slavery.
If you’d like to join David’s “Anti-Tech Collective”, you can do so here.
David Skrbina (sker-BEE-na), PhD, was a senior lecturer in philosophy at the University of Michigan, Dearborn from 2003 to 2018. He taught a graduate course in Technology and Sustainability at the University of Helsinki in fall, 2020. His areas of interest include philosophy of mind, eco-philosophy, philosophy of technology, and environmental ethics.