4

Bringing together the collapse and radical movements

Submitted by tnstaec in collapse (edited )

They obviously belong together. The people in charge of the system as it stands only have short-term, personal interests as their motivation. The states, corporations and financial cartels that control the world are clearly set on maintaining their destructive course. Breaking the existing power structures will greatly improve any possible outcomes of the 21st century.

So given the above, how can we bring the collapse movements and anticapitalist movements closer together?

Currently many of these groups are working at cross-purposes. Most of the climate change and general environmental movements are liberal-left in orientation. They get bogged down in trivial and symbolic activism. Many of them are duped by greenwashed capitalism. The peak oil scene has really fallen apart in the last ten years, despite the likelihood that we're in the last days of cheap petroleum right now. Most of the die-hard figures of this movement are right-of-center, notably the social conservative James Kunstler and the paleo-conservative (but highly insightful) John Michael Greer. Meanwhile many anticapitalists are blind to the hard limits that exist in natural systems. They tend to take as blindly naive views of industrialism as capitalists. If they really took a systems approach to the challenges humanity faces, they would have to change priorities and tactics.

Comments

You must log in or register to comment.

1

lustysociety wrote (edited )

I do not know of any collapse movement.
But I know that most persons want joy, wealth and technology.
In every country the persons with the greatest force decide.
In most or all countries this is the majority of the population.
I predict a smooth change of all countries and societies worldwide without major war or economic disaster.

2

tnstaec wrote (edited )

But I know that most persons want joy, wealth and technology.

What people want and what they are likely to get are quite different things. The lifestyles that people in the over-developed countries live are destroying the ecologies of the less-developed countries and pillaging the world's pool of resources. Critically, cheap fossil fuels will become too expensive to extract by the end of this century. We tend to ignore the role of petroleum in maintaining the status quo. No other energy source has near as much output as oil, so when starts to run out life as we know it will become disrupted.

1

LostWithPurpose wrote

So true. Nothing annoys me more than leftists who expect 'luxury'. Luxury is by definition something only the priviliged elite have access to.

1

lustysociety wrote (edited )

What people want and what they are likely to get are quite different things.

True but desire and intention leads to work and thus to change.
I call all countries with problems as under-developed because they have problems.
Except for climate change and criminal activities, the biosphere in a country is destroyed by citizens living in that country. E.g. poaching, destruction of forests, pollution of water, pollution of air (although some of America's air pollution starts out in Asia).

I guess that fossil fuel remains rather cheap in the next few years (the last ones where fossil fuel is used for transport) which is bad because the motivation to use alternative energy sources remains less despite the Paris Agreement for climate change.
IMO we have already much of the technology we need.
Solar panels to create heat, electricity or fuel.
Microbes that create fuel.
There are technologies like fuel cells and flow batteries (e.g. this) that allow to produce fuel in sunny reagions and transport and store the fuel where it is needed.
Thorium based reactors have been possible for a long time but governments chose to use unsafe Uranium based reactors in order to have Plutonium for nuclear weapons.
Fusion reactors might become possible in the next 2 decades but they might not be needed.
New technology will discovered or invented. E.g. use of water waves or water currents, use of nuclear waste material.

1

LostWithPurpose wrote (edited )

Is collapse really a 'movement'? It's inevitable, but it's not really an ideology in of itself.

Post-civ anarchism has inevitable collapse as one of its talking points. Postcivs believe anarchism will have the opportunity to come about after collapse.

2

tnstaec wrote

"Movement" may have been too strong a word. There's a significant cohort of people who are following the developments with climate science, species extinction, resource depletion, etc. A lot of these people are suitably pessimistic (realistic) about the political-economic establishment doing anything beyond the symbolic conferences and international agreements. It shouldnt take too much effort to make common cause with them, and show them some alternative approaches to addressing these issues.

1

LostWithPurpose wrote

I think the postciv movement is the best outlet we have for bringing new people to radical politics. It doesn't have the stigma of primitivism, but still plans for a world after the collapse of civilization. The other prob with primitivism and other anti-civ ideologies is that they often see collapse as something we should accelerate, while postciv see no point since the collapse is coming in a matter of decades. Accelerationism turns a lot of people off.

1

tnstaec wrote

I used to identify with post-civ/anti-civ. And I still believe that civilization was "humanity's greatest mistake" as Jared Diamond put it. But it's a bit late to put the genie back in the bottle. Even if everyone was on board with the idea, it would take several generations to deliberately deflate society and unlearn millennia of oppressive BS.

At this point I'm more focused on things like permaculture and Transition and the like. A lot of the folks in these movements are pretty thoughtful and some even have antiauthoritarian tendencies. But the politics of a lot of these folks tends to be fluffy liberal-left / hippies. There's also an uptick in right "libertarian" entrepreneurial types recently. Ugh. One thing a lot of folks can get behind in these movements is the idea of decentralization, so I think that's a good place to start. Develop a more robust connection between decentralization and antiauthoritarianism.

1

lustysociety wrote (edited )

Change is inevitable.
Collapse, where many or all suffer, will only happen because of a catastrophic meteor impact or super volcano eruption.
Even than societies will not be less advanced then before.
There is no possible global "postciv" scenario.
If some persons prefer a prehistoric lifestyle, they can have it but not with their underage children.

1

LostWithPurpose wrote (edited )

All civilizations collapse eventually and are replaced. It's naive to assume this civ is any different, esoecislly when all the science is telling us our way of life is unsustainable and we've passed the point of no return.

Your concept of 'advanced' is flawed. Progressing to a sustainable way of life is not 'prehistoric', it's the future.

1

lustysociety wrote (edited )

Empires and other political structures have collapsed and made room for something else.
Change happens and will happen.
IMO, humanity has progressed too far to lose knowledge and important skills e.g. like writing or reading the recorded data world wide.

I have read almost 2 articles about post-civ:

IMO the description of a post-civ society is not clear but the common ideas seem to be:

  • equality among all humans
  • care for nature and use of technology for good and not for bad
  • "post-civ" is not "primitivist" but no hurry to advance science and technology either.

Although this portrait reminds me of primitivism (Quote: "Glass jars are extremely useful, and are among the most abundant items scavenged from the old world.")

IMO, if ET came to earth and destroyed all technology, knowledge and memory of the "old civilized world", a similar history and struggle for survival, wealth, dominance and technology would happen again.