Our October Rebellion needs to be bigger than April’s was. Way bigger. Because this time, it has to be about not just getting verbal concessions from power, pious declarations of climate and ecological emergency without actual consequence. No; that’s just not good enough. Because this is the age of consequences. There’s no more time to play with…
The past month has witnessed an unprecedented turnaround of public opinion on the climate and ecological emergencies. When the ‘Extinction Rebellion’ broke out in mid-April, the media turned its gaze with almost unremitting hostility onto the inconvenience that it was bringing to motorised traffic in London. A fortnight later, everything had changed.
For the first time in 40 years, the UK has to re-consider its trading policy. At the moment, there is plenty of talk about “falling back” onto World Trading Organisation (WTO) rules in the event of a no-deal Brexit, an outcome which Theresa May’s giant game of ‘chicken’ makes dangerously likely. And indeed, if this is what happens, the UK will find itself solely under the minimalist rules-based trading system of the WTO.
Last week, the upper House inflicted a historic defeat on the Government’s Trade Bill. This article explains the reasons for and the significance of the defeat, in the context of the struggle over Brexit and in defence of a precautionary approach to environmental- and public-health- protection.
I’ve just published a book, called ‘A film-philosophy of ecology and enlightenment’. (You can read the early part of it for free here
…Don’t attempt to buy it unless you are independently wealthy — it’s madly expensive. Wait for the paperback next year — or, much better idea, order it for/through your library, now.)
Climate-nemesis is near-certain. But “near-certain” is not yet “inevitable”. On the contrary, it is still uncertain. By making it sound inevitable, we run the risk of fomenting inaction at the worst possible time. We need to prepare for what is near-certain. But if we give up trying to stop it then it will become inevitable. We need to try to stop it: roll on the eXtinction Rebellion.
A few years ago, I lost a very close friend. His name was Matt. I found this loss an appalling and bewildering experience, in part because I’d never lost anyone as close. I’d lost my grandparents, but they were all very old when they went; whereas Matt was 12 years younger than me. There is a difference between someone going ‘when their time has come’ and someone being untimely ripped away from one. Furthermore, Matt was exceptionally full of energy and life.
I had a chastening experience the other day. I went to my local municipal dump (aka ‘the recycling centre’), to recycle (or, as it turned out: to dump…) some old carpets that had been covering ground where no growth was occurring, at my allotment. What chastened me was something that I, perhaps like you, somewhere deep down knew was true, but had managed to make myself forget. Namely: how much of our rubbish is still just that. Stuff that cannot be recycled, but is simply destined to be stockpiled, burned, or landfilled.
“The way you use the word “God” does not show who you mean, but what you mean”. — Ludwig Wittgenstein.
Religion is and always has been much more and much other than just g/God, and certainly than the God of the Abrahamic religions. It is an awesome mistake to tie religion closely only to God, let alone to God as a lone super-person. As the philosopher Wittgenstein once, wonderfully, put it: It is very important that we talk of God’s eye, but not of God’s eyebrows — or eyelashes.