These seemingly disparate crises are not happening separately and accidentally. They are interrelated symptoms of our global civilisational paradigm, premised on fossil fuel-driven unlimited growth on a finite planet, through geopolitical alliances with autocratic, terror-toting — but oil-rich — regimes in the Muslim world.

The acceleration of global crises, therefore, is not so much about the end of the world, as it’s about ‘the end of the world as we know it’: our global civilisational paradigm is increasingly hitting the limits of planetary boundaries. It’s not working anymore.

And by the end of this century, if the scientific consensus is remotely accurate, this paradigm will not be capable of surviving.

We are, therefore, in the midst of a momentous civilisational transition, the outcomes of which are not set in stone. In this context, the chronically bad news we see everyday is not just bad news: it also signals the inevitable decline of a particular way of being in the world. But this also opens up, here and now, opportunities to forge what comes after.

Source: How to change the world in 3 easy steps – INSURGE intelligence – Medium

How Civilization Started 

The world has indeed got richer, but any such shift in morals and values is hard to detect. Money and the value system around its acquisition are fully intact. Greed is still good.

The study of hunter-gatherers, who live for the day and do not accumulate surpluses, shows that humanity can live more or less as Keynes suggests. It’s just that we’re choosing not to. A key to that lost or forsworn ability, Suzman suggests, lies in the ferocious egalitarianism of hunter-gatherers. For example, the most valuable thing a hunter can do is come back with meat. Unlike gathered plants, whose proceeds are “not subject to any strict conventions on sharing,” hunted meat is very carefully distributed according to protocol, and the people who eat the meat that is given to them go to great trouble to be rude about it. This ritual is called “insulting the meat,” and it is designed to make sure the hunter doesn’t get above himself and start thinking that he’s better than anyone else. “When a young man kills much meat,” a Bushman told the anthropologist Richard B. Lee, “he comes to think of himself as a chief or a big man, and he thinks of the rest of us as his servants or inferiors. . . . We can’t accept this.” The insults are designed to “cool his heart and make him gentle.” For these hunter-gatherers, Suzman writes, “the sum of individual self-interest and the jealousy that policed it was a fiercely egalitarian society where profitable exchange, hierarchy, and significant material inequality were not tolerated.

”This egalitarian impulse, Suzman suggests, is central to the hunter-gatherer’s ability to live a life that is, on its own terms, affluent, but without abundance, without excess, and without competitive acquisition. The secret ingredient seems to be the positive harnessing of the general human impulse to envy. As he says, “If this kind of egalitarianism is a precondition for us to embrace a post-labor world, then I suspect it may prove a very hard nut to crack.” There’s a lot that we could learn from the oldest extant branch of humanity, but that doesn’t mean we’re going to put the knowledge into effect. A socially positive use of envy—now, that would be a technology almost as useful as fire.

Source: How Civilization Started | The New Yorker

Black Sun: The singularity at the heart of the Anthropocene 

Source: Black Sun: The singularity at the heart of the Anthropocene – Institute for Interdisciplinary Research into the Anthropocene

Re-thinking ‘Bullshit and the Art of Crap-Detection’ in the Age of Fake News

I am convinced that it is not a specific task for some “trained elite task force” to monitor all of the world for a specific outbreak of rhetoric — instead this awareness of the danger of these memes should be widespread. As I wrote above, the greater the amount of believed bullshit there is in the world the more it undermines our very foundation as a society.

The definition of genocide itself, the eight stages of genocide, the twelve steps of genocide denial, and the psychology of evil — all of this should be common education so we prepare to meet these eternal, insidious forces. The only effective inoculation is the one which reaches the largest selection of at-risk population. With economic hardship, the American cultural landscape is fertile ground for 5GW recruiting and the rhetorical tropes in use.

The language of recruitment is rooted in dehumanization — which itself is the transactional language of cognitive deconstruction. In essence, suicidal ideation and other mental illnesses can be weaponized through rhetorical triggers. Bullshit is a weapon, and will cause more and more acts of increasingly violent mass killings.

Source: Re-thinking ‘Bullshit and the Art of Crap-Detection’ in the Age of Fake News

We are in the middle of a technological upheaval that will transform the way society is organized. We must make the right decisions now

Source: Will Democracy Survive Big Data and Artificial Intelligence? – Scientific American