Skip to main content

View Diary: ECSTASY:  Put a dent in neo-feudalism! (45 comments)

Comment Preferences

  •  The Frontier Forever myth. (12+ / 0-)

    I tend to believe that the source of this comes down to the experience of the frontier.  There's always somewhere new to go, somewhere new to grow, provided that one doesn't mind slaughtering the natives first.  

    The frontier is closed.  But it's going to take a few more generations before the mindset changes.  

    •  not only (5+ / 0-)

      we have the same myth here in continental europe,and you really cant say that we have had much of a frontier experience anytime within the last 5 to ten centuries.

      where that really comes from I dont know. It cant be older than 150 yrs now. But there it is the belief that growth is indispensable. Why? did they need growth in Colbert´s France? in Germany there have been several memorable events burned into the national psyche, in the last hundred years, and one of them was the Wirtschaftswunder, the explosive spurt of growth and wealth after the second world war - out of utter ruination, into sudden material wealth in which no questions were asked about the recent past. for Germans that has set a model "how it has to be". But this crazy growth belief is quite everywhere so it cant come from local specialties, where it really comes from I dont know.

      Ici s´arrète la loi.

      by marsanges on Thu May 06, 2010 at 09:29:47 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Isn't the impetus to growth a natural response to (4+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        RunawayRose, G2geek, WarrenS, linkage

        some types of limited stress? I'm thinking in base terms such as the pruning of a plant or the reaction of a population to local environmental opportunity, i.e, the thinning of a forest promoting the growth of the remaining individual trees.

        In other words, couldn't there be an evolutionary component that would tend to favor the predisposition towards growth as a selected trait?

        Could that be a contributing factor in this "myth" being discussed, if only as part of our genetic make-up being ready for exploitation due to other triggers?

        As marsanges points out, they have some of the same issues in Europe without the relatively recent "frontier expansion" experience, but with plenty of stress to local populations for a variety of reasons within that same, say 150 year period.

        Just thinking out loud.

        •  two factors: (3+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          RunawayRose, WarrenS, confitesprit

          One, sex feels good, and thus we get population growth.

          Two, we inherited the chimp instinct to grasp at objects that are "shiny and new," and thus we get consumption growth.  As I've said before, how many people ran out and bought an iPad in the first week, even though it did nothing that their existing technology didn't do already?  

          Other animals multiply up to the limit of their food supply.  Humans have managed to dump fossil fuels into that equation to artificially expand the food supply three times in the past century:  nitrate fertilizers produced from natural gas, tractors and other powered farm equipment, and pesticides also produced from petrochemicals.  

          When any animals hit the limit of their food supply, they have a die-back to a level that is sustainable on whatever food remains available.  If it's particularly severe, it's a dieoff: a large plurality to a majority of a population dies of hunger, disease, and fighting over resources.  

          So now we have three forces converging: a) continued increase in human population, and decrease in available food supply due to b) climate change and c) peak oil.  

          It's gonna' be a doozy of a dieoff.  

      •  Wirtschaftswunder (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        RunawayRose, WarrenS, confitesprit

        I think the difference was:

        Human population was far less, cheap oil was still available, and natural resources were still relatively plentiful.  

        Those factors made it easier to rebuild.  

        And those factors are no longer the case.  

Subscribe or Donate to support Daily Kos.

Click here for the mobile view of the site