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Monday, March 3, 2014

Monday Links has some bad, some better, and some good

+Let's start with the bad news first. Technologist with uncanny ability to predict long term trends, James Lovelock says we're all screwed.

+And the normally spot-on The Automatic Earth seems to be sliding into despair about climate change as well. My problem with the two above articles is that they seem to be discounting humanity's ability to drastically change in a generation. Just because it seems hopeless now, doesn't mean that circumstances won't force drastic changes in mankind's orientation to growth and living.

+The better: To speak of disaster communism is to recognise that if communism is to emerge, it will do so in the anthropocene. As capitalism accelerates climate change, ‘possible’ reforms become utopian and ‘impossible’ revolution becomes realistic. We live in strange times. The bourgeoisie is blasting and ruining not just its world, but the Earth systems which sustain human civilisation. We are going to inherit ruins and abandoned cities, there is only the slightest doubt about that. But we still also know how to build, and to build better. Toward a more hopeful view of the prospects for post-capitalism.

+The Good: According to the Times, Steyer wants to make his group, NextGen Climate Action, a critical player in this year's races by putting $50 million of his own funds into the San Francisco-based group and seeking an additional $50 million from outside donors. The former hedge fund manager reportedly met with two dozen liberal donors earlier this month to offer details on his plan. Finally, a billionaire on the Good side.

+The Locally Good: GA Republican House of Rep candidate Dahlys Hamilton wants to see more micro farms and farm to table restaurants. I've had several chats with Dahlys about her ideas for GA and I think she is a spectacular woman. I can't vote for her because I'm not in her district, but if I could, I would.

+One more for good measure: Look at the images of Ukraine, but do not consume them without context. (Thorough reporting and analysis abound.) When you see a headline about somewhere “apocalyptic,” remember that an “apocalypse” does not feel cinematic to the person experiencing it. It feels, instead, like the end of the world. Whenever you get a chance to read Sarah Kendzior, do.