6 Responses

  1. paul January 5, 2011 at 6:10 am |

    yes I agree completely with what you say, i’m just cautious of attacking the capitalist establishment head on and am trying to envisage a more subtle means of improvement. I think what you say about corrupt government is true but perhaps an understatement, im not even sure the gov.s are much more than a placebo. I still believe in democracy and that we (the people) have power, but more so in the shopping mall than the ballot box.

    Selfish greed is the villain here in all of this and its this aspect of our society which is being outed, slowly but surely, on blogs and forums all over the world, particularly in light of the state of the environment. eg. oil was a wonder product until we realised it was destroying our world, now it serves to reveal what the greedy are prepared to do to protect their wealth. Im not sure capitalism would not work ok if selfish greed were illegal, or rather if it were illegal to exploit the earth and its citizens, if guided by other values alongside pursuit of profit. I wonder if it is the establishment of these values (alongside the exposure of destructive callous greed) which is the purpose of this movement.

  2. David Patrick January 3, 2011 at 8:31 pm |

    While it is easy to see and say that Capitalism is killing us all, is is a lousy and unsupportable rallying cry. I encourage you to use these three words as your mantra;

    end corporate rule!

    Corporations will do whatever they are allowed to do in order to make profit, that is their reason for existing. What we have to gather around is the awareness that governments are ruled by corporations, not the other way around, because of basic and exploitable flaws in our party funding and lobbying rules.

    Seek not to “end capitalism” for that is a futile and contentious pursuit. Spend your energies instead on demanding transparency, and personal accountability, that will shine the bright light of truth on our inherently corrupt governments.

    END CORPORATE RULE!

  3. Derek Wall January 2, 2011 at 5:06 pm |

    Paul you are a fool. Capitalism is unrealistic, its killing every living thing on this planet so that men like Rennet can live absurd lifestyles.

    You have no argument only a metaphor.

  4. paul December 29, 2010 at 5:06 pm |

    I really would advise against suggesting anti-capitalism as the only route to sustainability. Its not realistic and will turn too many off. besides I believe in a ‘third way. Capitalism is arguably the natural mode of human societal organisation and parallels natural processes often, we could say it has now only reached adolescence and must negotiate a period of difficult growing pains and self conciousness before becoming an adult with responsibilities. The selfish, juvenile capitalism has served its purpose and as always human society must progress, change and adapt. It will be painfull but markets must be realigned to reflect a full range of human values. Values are the key to all this and capitalism has sold off humanity to buy toys. Its time to grow up. In the capitalist society of the future Ira Rennet would be considered a criminal.

  5. Jeff White December 23, 2010 at 5:17 pm |

    Cory wrote: “Bottom line – a person in Canada or the U.S. produces approx. 20 times the carbon than (sic) an average person in a vulnerable, developing country such as Zimbabwe.”

    What does this mean? How does comparing average, per-capita carbon consumption between countries provide any insight into the causes of the ecological crisis or how to resolve it?

    Are we supposed to conclude that Canadians as individuals are carbon gluttons, and that we have to reduce our individual carbon consumption by a factor of ten or more? Sorry, but that does not follow. Most of that per capita carbon production is not something I, as a Canadian, can control personally, by changing my consumption patterns; it’s rather a statistical abstraction created by allocating to me my per capita “share” of the country’s total production of carbon emissions.

    My share of the Athabasca Tar Sands. My share of the forest industry. My share of the automobile industry. My share of the food processing, packaging, and storage industries. My share of the mining and smelting of ores. My share of factory farming operations. My share of the aviation and ground transportation industries. My share of the armed forces. Most of my “share” has nothing to do with my own personal consumption and emission of carbon.

    What’s relevant to consider is not what emissions the “average person” produces, but what emissions are produced by technologies and practices that operate in conflict with the environment, and not in harmony with it – technologies that are aimed at increasing the profits and wealth of the small minority at the expense of the planet and the rest of us who live on it. Those technologies and practices are what keep the capitalist system going. We have more of those technologies and practices here in Canada than does Zimbabwe. That’s the source of the “staggering inequality” of carbon emissions; because under capitalism, growth and development inevitably mean environmental destruction.

    We will never get rid of destructive technologies and industrial practices without also ridding ourselves of capitalism and replacing it with a new form of society – one based on freely-associated labour and democratic control of the means of production. Only when production is freed from the necessity of turning a profit can we begin to bring economy into line with ecology.

    It’s not up to the “globally wealthy” like Ira Rennert to change the system. They will never do it. It’s up to the rest of us.

  6. Cory Morningstar August 7, 2010 at 6:15 pm |

    The Staggering Inequality of Climate Change

    Globally, the wealthiest 8% emit 50% of all emissions.

    And most of this is for a display of opulence and over consumption. Professor Stephen Pacala of Princeton University calculated the emissions per person based on 6.5 billion people. What he found is startling. He found that the 3 billion poorest people emit essentially nothing. Simply stated, the development of the desperately poor is not in conflict with solving the climate crisis. Ironically, the reluctance of developing countries to drastically cut carbon is often used as an excuse by developed nations to do nothing. For example, Zimbabwe emits 0.93 tonnes of carbon per person, while the United States emit 19.66 tonnes of carbon per person. Canada emits 17.86 tonnes of carbon per person. India produces 1.17 tonnes of carbon per person while China produces 3.7 tonnes of carbon per person. Bottom line – a person in Canada or the U.S. produces approx. 20 times the carbon than an average person in a vulnerable, developing country such as Zimbabwe.

    The wealthiest 15% emit 75% of all emissions

    Furthermore, Pacala’s data shows that the wealthiest 15% are responsible for 75% of global emissions.

    “In contrast, the rich are really spectacular emitters. …the top 500 million people [7.5% of humanity] emit half the greenhouse emissions. These people are really rich by global standards. Every single one of them earns more than the average American and they also occur in all the countries of the world. There are Chinese and Americans and Europeans and Japanese and Indians all in this group.”

    The remaining 85% of humanity emit only 25% of all emissions

    Pacala’s data shows the globally wealthy could solve the crisis. Most importantly, it also shows there is absolutely no other way. Humanity must cut fossil fuel emissions massively and the only people who can cut global fossil fuel use to the extent needed are the wealthiest 15%. Furthermore, most of the cuts will need to be made by the wealthiest 7.5%, because they are using almost all of it. The globally wealthy must make the major reductions.

    From:
    Suicidal Tendencies or Addiction? Earth Day Hijacked by Climate Wealth Opportunists
    http://canadianclimateaction.wordpress.com/2010/03/31/suicidal-tendencies-or-addiction/

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