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Environment Climate Change, Pollution, Endangered Species, Industrial Agriculture, Degrading Habitats & Renewable Energy.

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  #61  
Old May 12th 2011, 04:32 PM
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Default Re: Enviropessimism

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Originally Posted by andrewl View Post
BTW, i do not consider myself an environmentalist. If i had to pick a label it would be anarcho-primitivist.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Anarcho-primitivism

That gives sort of a general outline of where i stand.

Environmentalism to me is mainly about trying to fit a square peg in a round hole. I don't agree with the mainstream environmental view that consumer society and industrialization is compatible with the ecosystem.

Andrew
The biggest problem with primitivism in general is it doesn't define how primitive we have to get.

I mean it's arguable that all life more sophisticated than single-celled bacteria are too complex to be morally permissible. Anything more than that can be argued to be organically technologically enhanced.
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  #62  
Old May 12th 2011, 04:57 PM
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Default Re: Enviropessimism

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Originally Posted by andrewl View Post
BTW, i do not consider myself an environmentalist. If i had to pick a label it would be anarcho-primitivist.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Anarcho-primitivism

That gives sort of a general outline of where i stand.

Environmentalism to me is mainly about trying to fit a square peg in a round hole. I don't agree with the mainstream environmental view that consumer society and industrialization is compatible with the ecosystem.

Andrew
Interestingly enough, I completely agree with your premise, though my conclusion of how to address it is fundamentally opposite to yours. The current state of environmentalism seems, if not silly, at least somewhat an exercise in shuffling deck chairs on the Titanic. But, whereas your solution would be, for lack of a better metaphor, to fold, mine is doubling down on our technological progress.

I'm generally of the opinion that sufficient technological advancement in the face of problems will eventually allow us to have our cake and eat it too. Perhaps I'm overly optimistic, but given what I do for a living and what my personal projects tend to consist of, I'd probably be a lot worse at what I do if I had any other outlook.
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  #63  
Old May 13th 2011, 11:57 AM
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Default Re: Enviropessimism

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I don't buy this because it is possible to grow vegetables on say a hydroponic farm or bacteria in a lab. You don't need an organic conglomerate to have life.
Let me know when your bio-tech utopia actually happens and we no longer require sunlight, water, soil, and the myriad of life forms that nourish and sustain all things that grow are no longer needed.

Sorry, im just not a techo-triumphalist. Living life and spoiling the biosphere as if Monsanto will save us all is ridiculous.


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No, I see things very differently from your example because your house is an exclusive region. The environment is not yours to manage, govern, protect, control, oversee, etc.
I'm very opposed to the notion that we should be stewards of the planet.

But why not protect? It is required for life even more so than my house, protecting it is way more important and way more critical. I can build another house but i cannot build another biosphere. Protecting ones landbase is as old as the human species.

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Containment (as artificial exclusiveness) is crucial when it comes to defining purpose because without containment, it's impossible for outsiders to know that a purpose has been assigned to resources. For example, if your community depends upon a lake, but you don't signal your activity, then I don't know whether or not it would be violating to come in and use (and more importantly, HOW, to use) your lake. Heck, I might not even know about the existence of your community because I could be on the opposite side of the lake. You need to make a claim in order to tell the world that you exist.
This is absolutely irrelevant to any contemporary discussion on protecting the biosphere.

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I'm not denying that the environment ought to be preserved or not. What I'm denying is everyone believing in the same rate and style of depletion of the environment. Even if you have multiple people who agree that the environment ought to be cared about, that doesn't necessarily mean they agree on how it ought to be cared about. This report, for instance, is very vaguely worded, and it even conflates religion with environmentalism in some of its questions: http://ecoamerica.typepad.com/blog/f...EVS_Report.pdf
I'm mainly concerned about how to stop people (corporations) from committing ecocide, not about how ecology should be managed once the killing has ended. It would be a luxury at this point to have time to argue about such things.

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For example, maybe we agree on alternative energy to oppose fossil fuel pollution.

However, that doesn't mean we'll agree on what form of alternative energy to pursue. One thing I know from personal experience is most people don't think of geothermal power off the top of their heads despite how heat pumps can be installed anywhere even where you don't have a hot spot or fault line.

I like geothermal power, I really do. Why should I be forced to go along with say solar or wind or hydroelectric power instead?
Why would you pick one form of energy exclusively over all the others? Your thinking is very monolithic. If we ever have any hope of meeting today's energy use with renewables it will come from at least a half dozen different technologies, probably more.

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On the other hand, I don't see a problem with fossil fuels as long as the pollution is contained such that it doesn't impose upon the property rights of others.
I disagree. Without fossil fuels the population of the planet would be about 2 billion, maybe less. We would not be hyper-consumers. Regardless of pollution fossil fuels have been an absolute disaster for the planet and human society and it will ultimately result in total war as supplies dwindle and mass starvation.

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A group is nothing without its parts. If you oppress the minority's right to association (such as shareholders in a corporation versus nonshareholders throughout the rest of the community), then you're question begging over the right of the majority because the majority is made of the same unit type as the minority.
It is not about oppression. It is about limiting the right of anybody to impinge on the rights of of another. It is not a question of minority vs majority - it is about rights in general. I.e., a large corporation should not be allowed to pollute even one river or destroy even one forest if it impinges on the rights of even the tiniest and most remote of communities.

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Reality doesn't depend upon people being healthy, happy, or alive though.
But reality is that life will struggle to preserve such things.

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I don't see why health, happiness, or survival are relevant if you take subjectivity out of the picture. If you objectify people, then there's no reason to not treat all forms of life as natural resources themselves to be harvested and cultivated at will.
Alright, so subjectify all forms of life then. I don't really care about "objective vs subjective" arguments, i only care that the biosphere is protected, by whatever means possible. This is not a philosophical issue for me, it is an issue of immediate self-defense.

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I'm making a rational claim, not an empirical claim, here. Rational claims come down to definitions, not evidence.
It honestly sounds extremely irrational to me, bordering on insane.

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I'll agree that industrial consumerism is very miserable, but enslavement is about being positively forced and threatened to work, not negatively threatened with resource withdrawal.
Civilization itself is about herding the masses into cities and destroying the ability of people to live outside of the state economy. Our history with the original inhabitants of the north american continent and the history of colonialism in general proves this beyond any doubt whatsoever. This is the enslavement of the entire human species. This enslavement is directly related to the degradation of the environment. When people no longer even have the hope or possibility of sustaining themselves without the state or corporations they lose the very essence of what is freedom.

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OK.

Say you're in an environment and someone who wants to destroy the ecosystem promises to put you in a chemically induced life supporting vat for the rest of your life.

What's the problem?
The problem is that i would do everything in my power to kill such people.

Andrew
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  #64  
Old May 13th 2011, 12:08 PM
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Default Re: Enviropessimism

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Originally Posted by drgoodtrips View Post
Interestingly enough, I completely agree with your premise, though my conclusion of how to address it is fundamentally opposite to yours. The current state of environmentalism seems, if not silly, at least somewhat an exercise in shuffling deck chairs on the Titanic. But, whereas your solution would be, for lack of a better metaphor, to fold, mine is doubling down on our technological progress.

I'm generally of the opinion that sufficient technological advancement in the face of problems will eventually allow us to have our cake and eat it too. Perhaps I'm overly optimistic, but given what I do for a living and what my personal projects tend to consist of, I'd probably be a lot worse at what I do if I had any other outlook.

I would not consider myself a Luddite, but the fact remains that much of our current predicament is as a result of believing technology = progress. Technology is a very human trait and it will always be, but i do not believe that it has any hope of solving the problem, it is far more likely to make the problem worse.

Just consider our constant obsession with efficiency. We seem to have this believe that if we could just make everything more efficient we would be saved. But therein lies a paradox - as we make resource extraction and consumption more efficient we actually increase the rate of extraction and consumption of all resources. So even if we were able to power civilization with fusion, all this would mean under our current culture is that we would destroy the biosphere at a faster rate.

If there is a solution no doubt technology will play some part, but the major part will be in how we transform the economy. Our value system is really fucked up right now - if that does not change then all that technology will ever do is enhance how fucked up we are.

Andrew
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Old May 13th 2011, 02:39 PM
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Default Re: Enviropessimism

I don't understand why you want to preserve the environment. OK, so you want there to be life. Why?

It seems that the only reason you want to stay alive is so you can kill people who make change.

That seems not only insane, but viral as well. I think you're seriously begging the question over why people shouldn't objectify you as a natural resource.

One thing you said was my take on alternative energy is very monolithic, but then you didn't establish where energy demand comes from. This is a huge problem because you're only concerned with supplying demand, not demanding supply.

I'm just trying to get a fix on why you believe life is valuable. If you're not caring about that and only caring about life being a fact, then there's no difference between life versus death and 1 versus 0.
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  #66  
Old May 13th 2011, 02:39 PM
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Default Re: Enviropessimism

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Originally Posted by Daktoria View Post
I don't understand why you want to preserve the environment. OK, so you want there to be life. Why?

It seems that the only reason you want to stay alive is so you can kill people who make change.

That seems not only insane, but viral as well. I think you're seriously begging the question over why people shouldn't objectify you as a natural resource.

One thing you said was my take on alternative energy is very monolithic, but then you didn't establish where energy demand comes from. This is a huge problem because you're only concerned with supplying demand, not demanding supply.

I'm just trying to get a fix on why you believe life is valuable. If you're not caring about that and only caring about life being a fact, then there's no difference between life versus death and 1 versus 0.
Are you a nihilist?
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  #67  
Old May 13th 2011, 02:48 PM
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Default Re: Enviropessimism

A nihilist rejects the fact-value distinction, so no.

I actually think environmentalism is nihilist because it presumes that existence by itself is enough. If that was true, then there would be nothing wrong with torture, slavery, rape, etc.
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  #68  
Old May 13th 2011, 03:08 PM
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Default Re: Enviropessimism

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A nihilist rejects the fact-value distinction, so no.

I actually think environmentalism is nihilist because it presumes that existence by itself is enough. If that was true, then there would be nothing wrong with torture, slavery, rape, etc.
Well, now you're just making up definitions, so...
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  #69  
Old May 13th 2011, 04:23 PM
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Default Re: Enviropessimism

Look. If you want to say my definition is inaccurate, then make a definition and show how my description doesn't apply.

Semantic arguments boil down to set theory. They boil down to how you categorize value in order to make references necessary.

For example, I think environmentalism is nihilist because the recognition of nature does not require the recognition of life. Life can be interpreted as a complex metabolic chemical chain reaction instead in line with the rest of unliving matter in the world which is also subject to natural cause and effect.

Therefore, in order to avoid that reduction, something besides natural existence has to be considered for life to be valuable. An "eco"system can be equated to any other system in nature.

Last edited by Daktoria; May 13th 2011 at 04:27 PM.
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  #70  
Old May 13th 2011, 04:31 PM
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Default Re: Enviropessimism

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Originally Posted by Daktoria View Post
I don't understand why you want to preserve the environment. OK, so you want there to be life. Why?

It seems that the only reason you want to stay alive is so you can kill people who make change.

That seems not only insane, but viral as well. I think you're seriously begging the question over why people shouldn't objectify you as a natural resource.

One thing you said was my take on alternative energy is very monolithic, but then you didn't establish where energy demand comes from. This is a huge problem because you're only concerned with supplying demand, not demanding supply.

I'm just trying to get a fix on why you believe life is valuable. If you're not caring about that and only caring about life being a fact, then there's no difference between life versus death and 1 versus 0.
Why does it matter if you don't understand why i think life has value and why i want to preserve the biosphere? These sorts of questions seem incredibly unimportant.

Andrew
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