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Cutting Down the Clouds

This winter they are cutting down our woods more seriously than ever,—Fair Haven Hill, Walden, Linnaea Borealis Wood, etc. etc. Thank God they cannot cut down the clouds! Henry David Thoreau, journal entry, January 21, 1852 “A study just published in the journal Nature Geoscience shows that if we continue with business-as-usual fossil fuel emissions, […]

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Absolute Solutions Necessary

Only two things to do: 1. zero out carbon emissions 2. exception: all technological and scientific labor exploring new solutions may continue. What we can’t do: continue using electricity; continue “producing” anything. All systems are entangled. “We” also can’t do anything about anyone else’s use of electricity. Globally, we are not going to be able […]

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WFHB’s Interchange – An Interview with Jasper Bernes on Logistics and Food Systems

AUDIO: Capital’s (Hidden) Art of War and the Belly of the Revolution In the book of Genesis in the Hebrew Bible, Yahweh rejects the grain offering of the farmer, Cain, while accepting the flesh offering of his brother, the shepherd Abel. Cain, wounded by this rejection, murders his brother. The consequence is banishment to the […]

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Building the Insanity In: Ex Machina

This is not a movie review. This is me thinking about empathy. Last night, lonely little ol’ me sat in a hotel room in Laramie, Wyomig (inauspiciously named for Jacques LaRamie, a French or French-Canadian trapper who disappeared in the Laramie Mountains in the late 1810s and was never heard from again–nice choice, Laramie). I […]

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The Tragedy of Influential (White Supremacist) Liars: Distorting the Commons (Against Fair Housing and Civil Rights)

How can we measure the influence of bad ideas? If there is anything to learn from the “system” of social media it’s that bad news travels and expands exponentially while the “good news” is always sentimental and local (seems a “one-off”). Humans are perhaps best characterized by their affinity for gossip (what is the “gospel” […]

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Serving the Word

It might have been but a deception of the vapours, but, the longer the stranger was watched, the more singular appeared her manoeuvres. “Benito Cereno” by Herman Melville In a recent scholarly biography of Louis Agassiz, Christoph Irmscher, in a chapter on Agassiz’s notorious “race science,” notes that Agassiz is in no way the lone […]

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Energy and Doom

The future is incompatible with human thinking. That’s not to say we cannot imagine “tomorrow” but that what we imagine will always be cobbled together out of “pastness.” Further, the very same thinking that is assertively addicted to narratives of repetition (the sun rises, the sun sets, the sun rises, the sun sets)–I think we […]

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Living in the Futurist Dream (1913)

How does this sound as a description of our world? Aside from #17 below which makes no sense in this list, I’d say this pretty much describes the present. 1. Acceleration of life to today’s swift pace. Physical, intellectual, and sentimental equilibration on the cord of speed stretched between contrary magnetisms. Multiple and simultaneous awareness […]

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Against the Real Creationists

I just finished reading “The New Synthetic Biology: Who Gains?” by Richard Lewontin in the New York Review of Books. I believe this article makes clear that there are tremendous amounts of insight and ingenuity in the ways that humans try to be creators and fixers. Or rather, to create fixes for errors of human […]

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Just a Shot Away

Oh, a storm is threat’ning My very life today If I don’t get some shelter Oh yeah, I’m gonna fade away War, children, it’s just a shot away It’s just a shot away War, children, it’s just a shot away It’s just a shot away (The Rolling Stones) my wild shot– demanding simply that the […]

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Glorifying War Shall Not Grow Old

Concerning War Movies (prompted by a conversation about Peter Jackson’s movie They Shall Not Grow Old). In J. D. Salinger’s […]

Cutting Down the Clouds

This winter they are cutting down our woods more seriously than ever,—Fair Haven Hill, Walden, Linnaea Borealis Wood, etc. etc. […]

Representative Texts from Hawthorne to Dickinson

In your daily busyness you are pressed for time to think and often choose instead anesthetization – watching any number […]

Between Hope and Defeat, History and Heaven

“God himself culminates in the present moment.” (Thoreau) What is “now” for? What if you “know” the future? Fairy tales […]

Absolute Solutions Necessary

Only two things to do: 1. zero out carbon emissions 2. exception: all technological and scientific labor exploring new solutions […]

Rachel Carson’s book had no real effect

Facing Global Climate Disruption and the End of Everything All At Once… David Wallace-Wells’ The Uninhabitable Earth tries very hard […]