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View Diary: Breaking: Bubbling ... the news isn't good (294 comments)

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  •  "Expensive" will be a useless vestigal term if (5+ / 0-)

    we are to survive.  There is no expense too great to save our world.  We will get what we need to mitigate and hopefully find our way in the changed world.  One way, or another...

    #OccupyOMC - "We have a permit, its called The Constitution".

    by Evolutionary on Mon Dec 12, 2011 at 09:28:08 PM PST

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    •  Definition of "cost" may change radically (7+ / 0-)

      And this could matter a lot.  If a course of action appears to be even a penny better based on the accounting du jour, that's what many people, business, governments will do.

      It's ironic that the biggest obstacle in trying to stop global warming is not the actual physical challenges, but is the phantom of how people count (or fail to count) costs and benefits.

      We shall not contribute to our own destruction.

      by James Wells on Mon Dec 12, 2011 at 10:54:28 PM PST

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      •  Well said. It's the same malady that afflicts (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        mightymouse, Evolutionary, A Siegel

        everything from US foreign policy, to banking and business disinvestment, the stock market, etc. Short term thinking focuses on the next quarter, but everyone ignores the huge losses we face down the road.

        I agree, the definition of cost may change radically in ordinary usage. But "cost" has never meant simply a dollars calculation. I learned in economics 101 that opportunity costs, long term liabilities resulting from today's short term gains, and the impact on resources -- not least of which are people's health and well being -- are all part of the "cost" calculation for societies weighing certain actions, or in this case inaction.

        And I don't think it's going to take a hundred years for the social disintegration to take place; it already is. US Society is far less cohesive today than it was in 1980, because those holding the vast majority of the nation's wealth are moving away from society and into enclosed, guarded compounds, while imposing a police state on use peasants. The breakdown in civil society is a natural, foreseeable result.

        As the break down sweeps the western world, the next forty years will be every bit as disruptive and disorienting at the last thirty, at the least.

        •  You and I are of one mind on this. (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          A Siegel

          The irony present in this set of facts is that they will become prisoners in their compounds.  They will be screwed when that low-payed controller at the water pumping plant stops working.  They will be screwed when a similar worker stops sending natural gas to cook with and heat homes with.
          No human being can exist in today's world as an isolated island to themselves.  These uber-wealthy people seem to not understand how dependent they are on our labor.
          Their emergency stocks of food and water would be quickly depleted.  I would bet most of that water would be wasted by continuing to use toilets when water is no longer coming from the taps.  None of these super rich people have any clue as to how to create a sustainable community.  I doubt that many of them understand how to grow enough food to actually feed themselves on a continuous basis.  The real winners would be those oh-so-hated brown people that are agricultural experts.  And I doubt that they would be very kind to these compound dwellers.

          #OccupyOMC - "We have a permit, its called The Constitution".

          by Evolutionary on Tue Dec 13, 2011 at 07:02:19 AM PST

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