Along the Highway of Tears

Scientific evidence across a wide range of phenomena confirms acceleration of climate/ecocidal breakdown at a rate beyond even the most grim predictive models. For example, temperatures in Antarctica recently reached a record 65 degrees Fahrenheit while data elsewhere suggests that bumblebees are disappearing at a rate “consistent with mass extinction”.

What can be done? Given the abject failure of so-called global “elites” to develop emergency mitigation policies, alternative leadership has emerged, rooted in the wisdom, courage and sovereignty of indigenous peoples.

Witness the ongoing struggle against TransCanada’s four hundred mile Coastal GasLink pipeline through the words of Wet’suwet’en hereditary chief Molly Wickham, spoken during a recent interview on Democracy Now. We take particular note of the convergence of violence against nature with the murder/disappearance of indigenous women.

 

 

 

 

 

WHY IS A RCMP SNIPER RIFLE BEING AIMED AT UNARMED AND COMPLETELY PEACEFUL LAND DEFENDERS ON THEIR OWN SOVEREIGN TERRITORY?

 

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Just How Blind, America?

We have received a number of emails from correspondents far and wide, asking us to explain how “drain the swamp” became “grow the cesspool”.

For decades, we have been stuck in the corrosive and demoralizing limbo zone that philosopher Antonio Gramsci called “the interregnum”, a time during which the Old Order is dying yet keeps itself alive through active vampiric suppression of the new body politic that struggles to be born.

During this time, Gramsci notes, “a great variety of morbid symptoms” are likely to be present. Limbo limbo, how low can we go? Thus we bend an ear to the voice of Gil Scott-Heron from the year 1974; the year of H2O-Gate Blues. The image within the interregnum — an untitled Car Crash by the German artist Dirk Skreber.

Beneath the audio file, a few choice GS-H lyrics that underscore the tragic fact that we have been here before, though now at an even lower level of the limbo. And we will be here again and again — lower and lower — unless we can break the deadly cycle, such that new life might enter the world with a fresh, powerful voice and take us somewhere else.

 

 

 

 

[….]

 

And then the last four lines……..

Four more years,

Four more years,

Four more years,

Four more years of THAT?

 

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Rescue Into Emergency

Now comes philosopher Santiago Zabala, in an interview from the invaluable ongoing Histories of Violence series convened by the Los Angeles Review of Books.

Images are from an environmental installation by artists Pekka Niittyvirta and Timo Aho: Lines.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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About Lines, Niittyvirta and Aho offer the following thoughts:

The installation explores the catastrophic impact of our relationship with nature and its long-term effects. The work provokes a dialogue on how the rising sea-levels will affect coastal areas, its inhabitants and land usage in the future.

Art has the potential to convey scientific data, complex ideas and concepts, in a powerful way that words or graphs fall short of. Hopefully, through this work, people can better visualise and relate to [the] reality. 

Humans have been influencing the climate since the beginning of the industrial revolution and the effects have only been accelerating. LED lights visually resonate with contemporary consumer society. 

We felt that this solution possibly illustrates dystopian projections of the sea-level rise in the most tangible way: a threat that is encountered within coastal communities all over the world.

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Tyranny of Mammon

There was a bit of nervous tittering and tweeting among the clotted toffs and nabobs assembled at Davos when even the Crown Prince of the Windsor dynasty suggested the need for a “revolutionary paradigm shift”.  Wait — what?

Below, we turn to a few crystalline paragraphs written by Humanities professor Eugene McCarraher way back in 2011, yet ringing ever more truly during the present “forever hunger” omnicide. Italics and images added by DP.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

We highly recommend Professor McCarraher’s recently published The Enchantments of Mammon: How Capitalism Became the Religion of Modernity,  through which he amply expands on the above with rare historical insight, subtlety and wit.

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We also take a moment to commemorate the comic genius of Terry Jones, as embodied by our favorite avatar of Mammon here at DP: the immortal Mr. Creosote. The setting is a well-known bistro at Davos frequented by peckish members of the World Economic Forum, who observe Mr. C. from an unsafe distance……..

 

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Forever Hungry

We are grateful to our colleagues at Rewilding Earth for publishing an excellent, detailed report on the threat of extensive deep-sea mining, written by Abundant Earth author Eileen Crist. The article includes an extensive bibliography, as well as the outlines of a non-extractive alternative way of connecting with seaborne earthlings and their magnificent habitat.

Brief excerpts below, together with a few images of hungry ghost maw-machines relayed from the website of a “pioneering” sea-mining corporation. They communicate the dark, indiscriminate and savage sort of supremacist violence that has become the signature of an extractive capitalism gone berserk, through an “always encroaching’ (see below) greed for plunder and profit.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Big Winds Will Come

As wildfires continue to rage throughout Australia, with smoke plumes crossing the Pacific above New Zealand, turning the glaciers brown, and detectable in Chile, the ongoing devastation being inflicted upon the Amazon rainforest has once again disappeared from view.

The costs of our collective inability to sustain attention, let alone take action, will eventually become manifest, and with a vengeance. Consider these words of warning from Raoni Metuktere, chief of the indigenous Brazilian Kayapó people. No images necessary; listen for the winds.

 

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A Tale of Two Fires

Onwards we sail into a new decade, during which many members of the species homo sapiens will be obliged to learn all over again that reality consists of that which does not go away when you stop believing in it.

Wildfire has a way of burning through even the most compelling alternative facts. 

 

FANTASY: BUSINESS AS USUAL


REALITY: CLIMATE EMERGENCY

Cheers to all; ever onwards into the smoke.

Wondrous Mystery

During this time of year, we reflect on the mirabile mysterium, the word made flesh; that explosive presence of the divine as expressed through the birth of Jesus.

In the story of Mary, we are also reminded of the sacred nature of words; that the power of speech itself might well be considered as a sacred offering. It would then follow that when we abuse said power to deceive, manipulate or incite violence against each other or against other sentient beings, we are performing acts of profound desecration.

In the spirit of such reflections, a recent interview caught our ear, with Karen Armstrong discussing key themes explored in her magnificent and essential book, The Lost Art of Scripture. Excerpts below, followed by a link to a spirited performance of the Jacobus Gallus setting for Mirabile Mysterium, as performed by La Main Harmonique.

 

 


From This Sweet Earth

While political events continue to serve as massive noise generators that obscure the deeper stories unfolding around us, stories that may eventually enfold and envelop us — among them, the slash & burning of the Amazon rainforest — we listen to a pure cry of visceral pain transcribed into the body of an essay by writer and climate activist Elisabeth Peredo Beltrán.

A few excerpts below, with images from an installation by Ai Weiwei, using roots and trunks from ancient Pequi Vinagreiro trees, gathered by local artisans in the Bahian forest.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Here We Are Again

Yet another COP. Yet another chance for global leaders to take meaningful action. Yet another chance to dither and fiddle.

More promising: yet another Global Climate Strike. More voices than ever in the mix. A rising wave of global youth that will bring change whether the thoroughly discredited and delusional global “elites” want that change or not.

This week, in the midst of the compromised COP and the rising wave, we simply relay two statements from 350.org, the first from Executive Director May Boeve:

 

 

Next, from Latin American director Nicole Oliveira:

 

 

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