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« Is Occupy Wall Street a Testament to the Need for Systems Thinking? | Main | What is the Solution to All Problems? »

November 16, 2011


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How to Start a Small Business

Of course there is always hope as long as there is life. If people will be hopeful and think that there is a need for us to grow and succeed then there is hope too.
[Moderator edit: Removed commercial URL]


Wow the "how to start aa small business" plugs BAU on george's blog - cool! :)

excellent post george - sapients of all countries unite! :)

the only problem now is to get a litmus test for sapience :)

on the other hand understanding science _is_ s proxy for sapience and a dedication to squeeze out faith and ungrounded hope is an inddication of sapience too

so the process of ssapients organizing is undder way - even if it has not manifested itself yet in a proper organization it has manifested itself in you writing about the idea and many others who share your idea in one form or another even if they employ the language thatdoes not imidiately resembles yours

great post and thanks


Not to be all gloom and doom about it, but with the amount of carbon we're spewing, even if we stopped completely TODAY, it would take thousands of years for the planet to either reabsorb it (unlikely) or balance to a new normal - which may be anti-human life form (way too hot to grow anything edible for starters) for quite a while until the heat dissipates.

We're done. Sapient or not, we've ruined our fishbowl and it's not fixable by us. Now we have to pay for our mistakes. The earth is going to rid itself of us.

After many thousands of years, perhaps single-celled organisms will once again pop up to start the whole process over again. Maybe next time . . .

George Mobus

How to,

Of course there is hope where there is life. We call that evolution. The key question is what kind of life will it be? I think Tom (below) would vote for bacteria!


Thank you.


I can understand the sentiments you express, but I don't share the expectation of such a complete reduction of life on this planet, even in the extremes we can expect from climate change.

Things are going to get bad as compared with what we humans have grown used to, to be sure. But we humans have also evolved an unprecedented capacity to adapt to extremes. After all people living in the Arctic circle are living in extreme conditions relative to equatorial Africa where we presumably evolved.

I agree that we humans (not being sapient enough) have created this scenario and that it will stress the biosphere mightily. The sixth major extinction event is most likely underway already. What will follow will produce major and very strong selection forces that will drive evolution in ways we probably can't imagine.

But life is nothing if not resilient. It is capable of adapting and sometimes remarkably quickly. The old view that evolution is only a long-term process taking millions of years is now given way to a realization that some evolutionary events can be quite rapid. So I would not count the genus Homo out quite yet. The species sapiens will definitely be supplanted (indeed needs to be supplanted) just as this species supplanted previous species of Homo and they Australeopithecines. I think the selection pressures from nature will do the trick there. Eusapient people should be able to adapt by virtue of their better brains and cooperative behavior. Poor old mere sapients will succumb to the environment and to each other because they are so unwise and selfish. At least that is my hypothesis and I will stick to it!

I, too, look to the "next time", but I see it as an outgrowth of the current situation rather than a complete re-boot of evolution.



Derrick Jensen: "Beyond Hope".

Frankly, I don’t have much hope. But I think that’s a good thing. Hope is what keeps us chained to the system, the conglomerate of people and ideas and ideals that is causing the destruction of the Earth.

To start, there is the false hope that suddenly somehow the system may inexplicably change. Or technology will save us. Or the Great Mother. Or beings from Alpha Centauri. Or Jesus Christ. Or Santa Claus. All of these false hopes lead to inaction, or at least to ineffectiveness.

. . . We’ve all been taught that hope in some future condition—like hope in some future heaven—is and must be our refuge in current sorrow. I’m sure you remember the story of Pandora. She was given a tightly sealed box and was told never to open it. But, being curious, she did, and out flew plagues, sorrow, and mischief, probably not in that order. Too late she clamped down the lid. Only one thing remained in the box: hope. Hope, the story goes, was the only good the casket held among many evils, and it remains to this day mankind’s sole comfort in misfortune. No mention here of action being a comfort in misfortune, or of actually doing something to alleviate or eliminate one’s misfortune.

The more I understand hope, the more I realize that all along it deserved to be in the box with the plagues, sorrow, and mischief; that it serves the needs of those in power as surely as belief in a distant heaven; that hope is really nothing more than a secular way of keeping us in line.

The twenty premises of "Endgame".


Hello everyone, before i start things off i would just like to say that i am an 16 year old that has just read what has been stated on this page including some of the comments you have all posted. I am extremely alarmed about the future or whether i will have one at all. So here is my question, i would like to know whether there is anything i can do to ensure or perhaps increase my chances of survival in these extremely volatile times, any and all suggestions are appreciated. Thank you.


@anonymous 16 year old

ONE WORD (and it is not "plastics" :))


and as a practical assignment: which movie i referenced when i said "and it is not plastics"?

here are the hints:
it was 1967 movie
the initials for the main mail protagonist are BB
the soundtrack to this movie rose to the top of the charts in 1968
the director for this movie won Academy Award


@ait im assuming your reffering to george orwells nineteen-eighty four, am i correct?


@ait actually, i was wrong, i jumped to conclusions when you said "BB" and immediately assumed that it stood for big brother without looking at anything else you said. My apologies. The movie you are actually talking about is The Graduate, directed by Mike Nichols.



you are correct - I was thinking about The Graduate

did you watch it or looked up the clues?

as to the substance of your question: you don't really have to do much except stay alert and keep training your brain to discern how things really _are_ not how others tell you they are

be curious and hungry for knowledge

knowledge is power in general

knowledge of human nature will give you the power to control yourself and others

but most importantly: don't worry about anything - live, act, learn all the lessons from everything you ever do regardless of whether you think it was a mistake or a brilliant move looking back

the future is yours


@ait I appreciate your response, and yes, i did look up your hints and eventually came to the conclusion that The Graduate was the movie you were thinking about. As for the second part of your post, i am hungry for knowledge, i research a great deal about a variety of topics. Once again, i thank you for imparting your wisdom and knowledge upon me.



don't thank me for wisdom and knowledge - i do not have more than anybody else

i may be as incoherent as all others blabbing nonsense about the topics they know nothing about but think they are the "ultimate truth"

trust your own brain

know that your brain is as good if not better than anybody elses

be suspecious of things that do not jive together

never be tired of digging deeper than anybody else until your own curiosity is completely satisfied

never trust others do your thinking for you - no matter how high in the skky they may appear to everybody else - they are merely mortals with as good of brain as yours

take it upon yourself to understand the space you live in and share this understanding with others from your generation


@ait I would share my understanding of various issues such as this one with my generation, but i am positive that MOST of my generation would not care, much less show an interest in these topics. They probably wont survive the so called population bottleneck when it arrives. I for one, hope that i am not among those that will perish when it happens.



i trust you do not view this population bottleneck event as something that is scheduled for specific day in the future

it is not at all like that

overpopluation began long time ago - before we even figured out how to use our howls and screams to mean anything

we are all in the same boat

how and when the events become nasty is hard to predict: there is even a chance that it will not happen over your lifetime

all you want is maintain sanity and learn how to control your emotions when things get charged so that you do not get caught in some mindless vilence of the mob

and once you feel strong enough to try your hand at changing how things are done you will seek out people who think like you and together you will act along the evolutionary trajectory

seeking out people who think like you is always important but always keep in mind that people maybe parroting you or each other _without_ deep understanding

when you are connected you feel good and together the chances to survive are much higher

George Mobus


Interesting insights. But, I think, limited to what may be true for the current dominant species, Homo sapiens. My hope lies in evolution producing a "better" species (meaning more fit for long-term survival).


I completely understand your sense of angst. Whether 16 or 60 everyone should be paying attention to their emotional response to events in the world and the prospects commanded by the depletion of cheap (and high energy return on energy invested) energy in fossil fuels. Fear is a legitimate emotion to feel when danger looms. But it can either lead to action or paralysis. The key is not let it produce the latter.

In my view there are many routes to "survival" but all depend on adaptability and willingness to take paths less traveled. Let me call your attention to the series I began here: How">">How Might Humanity Survive a Radically Changing World? and have continued to develop (you can find them listed under the category of Evolution). I will be continuing the series shortly but there are a number of links that will provide you with the background you may be seeking.

Try to remember that in the end there are no guarantees of anything. The only thing you can rely on is your own wits and a willingness to question the received wisdom (including this!) My only advice is to amplify AIT's advice: learn all that you can about how the world really works (from science, not from speculative sources). That you are even paying attention is a good sign.


Thanks for your concern for Anon's questions.


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