Reply To: Climate, the science, politics, economics and anything else

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Michael, Extinction Rebellion’s Principle One:

We have a shared vision of change;
– To make a world fit for generations to come.

I’m pretty sure you support this principle. Humanity is making a world that is unfit for generations to come, and we, the people currently alive, have a moral duty to change that, because natural things now rapidly being destroyed took millions of years to come into existence. Humanity is destroying nature thousands of times faster than it can regenerate itself and only us in the present can change it. The faster we act, the less will be lost.

In your October 27, 18:59 comment you wrote:

“Many of these new borns want to fly, consuming aviation fuel at no tax. Many of these new borns will have Chinese electrical goods, which all use plastics made of oil, the Chinese use Coal to make electricity. People cut Tropical rainforest down to grow C4 plants.”

The reason “People cut Tropical rainforest down to grow C4 plants” is because they’re paid to; it’s profitable. That’s also why people run airlines, make electrical products and extract oil; these things wouldn’t be available for wrecking the world unless people were being paid to do them. Under the current system, people need to do these things on order to get money to live – so there is some authority higher than people, some form of control, and it is money. The people can’t change unless and until the system of money is changed.

Changing that system is what Extinction Rebellion is all about. In order to change it, we need enough people who are willing to take some kind of action against it. Precisely what actions they take are up to them; Principle 10:

We are based on autonomy and decentralisation
– We collectively create the structures we need to challenge power.

XR members are only gluing themselves to roads because it was an idea someone had and it proved to work – it forces governments to take notice, and it gets reported, making people think. But XR do a lot of other things too, and anyone can come up with an idea and develop it within XR groups, or join in with some other members’ ideas.
– – – – – – – –

Michael, there’s a big difference between what we think, and how we think. It’s related to the difference between fact and opinion. Everyone should agree that toxic pollution makes people ill and can kill them. It’s just a fact, and we don’t abandon our personality by accepting it. A socialist may argue that nationalisation of industry is the way to stop toxic pollution, whereas a capitalist is likely to argue that strong laws will make industry clean up its act. An extreme libertarian might insist that eventually people will become aware of which companies are dumping toxins, boycott them and thereby drive them out of business – pure market dynamics. These are differences of opinion, but only liars would distort the public’s understanding of toxicity to trick us into supporting their preferred solutions, or thinking that there was no problem at all. Unforgivably, the system of money also pays people to craft very convincing lies. That’s why Extinction Rebellion’s First Demand is:

Tell the Truth! about the climate and ecological emergency.

You already agree that there’s an ecological emergency, and in this your thinking is already ahead of the media, who go on and on about climate and hardly ever mention the ongoing mass extinction caused by human activity. If we had time, I’m sure I could convince you that there is also a climate emergency, by consideration of observable facts – you did write that you’re open to being convinced. But right now I should go out and help with talking to the public and giving out leaflets.