I cannot count the number of times I have heard of some federal “Preemption” of a State Law in recent years. Each time, the winner is some corporate polluter or other practitioners of the “externalization” of environmental or societal costs of its operations. Such corporate criminals have destroyed countless ecosystems and, ultimately, destabilized most of … More Federal “Pre-emption” of State Laws Weaponized by the Corporate State
We live in increasingly complex systems, more and more of them are of our own making, though not always of our own conscious design. There are two basic kinds, natural complex adaptive systems, such as the Earth System and its many subsystems, and human-made complex adaptive systems, such as social groups and corporations. It appears … More How to Control Complex Adaptive Systems to Survive
The Role of the Social Sciences in Developing Effective Climate Action NOTE: I presented a slightly different version of this paper at the National Social Science Association Meetings in Denver, Colorado, August 3, 2016 We need not turn to the elections of 2016 to observe the madness of the public discourse and the corporate-governmental response to the climate crisis. In electoral politics, at least, we expect … More Calculating Human Survival:
The 1960s and 1970s were the peak years for a small magazine called “The Realist,” published and edited by Paul Krassner. It was filled with hilariously funny satire on the absurdities of American politics, economics, and culture. Along with Krassner, contributors included the likes of Lenny Bruce, Ken Kesey, Woody Allen, and Mort Sahl, among … More The Politics of Disinfotainment: Anything But Real Issues
You can find just about any message you’d like to hear about climate change. The gloomiest of fatalists: “It’s too late; we’re doomed; party on.” The science denier: “It’s the greatest hoax ever to deceive the American public; those scientists are just making these claims to get grants.” The suburban consumer: “It’s not my problem; … More Can We Get There from Here? Stalling on the Path to Species Survival…or Not
We all labor under certain illusions, some modest and minor, others enormously majestic. Social illusions have always been with us. We tend to think of the myths of “primitive” peoples as illusions and our own beliefs as facts. But that may be the biggest illusion of all. Some of what at first appear to be … More Magical Thinking: It’s Everywhere and Getting More Dangerous
The mass media continue to present the issue of climate change as if it were an unsettled scientific topic for political debate. Of course, the mass media are owned by the very corporations that have externalized the real costs of their pollution of the environment. If the real costs to people and the planet were … More Climate Science or Social Science?