I found it rather comforting to learn Professor Jem Bendell, among his other achievements, has an “honors” Bachelor of Arts. He boasts of this, and therefore it must be important, in his monumental new work which assures us social collapse is “inevitable.” (He also has a blog where he writes of himself in the third person.)
Regular readers here are, of course, inclined to agree with any forecast of doom. Short of a Great Awakening or a Napoleon willing to turn the cannons on the maddening rabble it is difficult to see how we can avoid a leftist singularity.
But this isn’t the kind of collapse our Bendell foresees. He thinks we will be struck down by…guess, just guess.
Now this must be some paper, for a magazine devoted to sexual perversion said the paper is “So Depressing It’s Sending People to Therapy: On average, three people read an academic paper. At least 100,000 have read this — and a lot of them haven’t taken it very well”.
What if I told you there was a paper on climate change that was so uniquely catastrophic, so perspective-altering and so absolutely depressing that it’s sent people to support groups and encouraged them to quit their jobs and move to the countryside?
Glad you asked, Vice. I take it as evidence of the weak mindedness of a key segment of the population, and additional proof of SJW-induced impending doom.
Here is an actual quotation from Bendell’s science paper: “As disturbing information on climate change passed across my screen, this was the question I could no longer ignore, and therefore decided to take a couple of months to analyse the latest climate science.”
Diary writing substituting for actual writing is not new, unfortunately. For instance in all academic disciplines devoted to Diversity, it is positively de rigueur (well documented by New Real Peer Review).
We can be glad, though, that this non-physicist took a “couple of months” to investigate the complexities of thermodynamic transfer in fluids on rotating spheres. Took the rest of us years of study; but Bendell does have that Honors degree.
More science: “To illustrate, a search on Google Scholar returns over 40,000 hits for the term ‘climate adaptation.’ In answering the questions I set for myself in this paper, I will not be reviewing that existing field and scholarship. One might ask ‘why not’?”
One might; I won’t dare.
We do not know for certain how disruptive the impacts of climate change will be or where will be most affected, especially as economic and social systems will respond in complex ways. But the evidence is mounting that the impacts will be catastrophic to our livelihoods and the societies that we live within. Our norms of behaviour, that we call our “civilisation,” may also degrade. When we contemplate this possibility, it can seem abstract. The words I ended the previous paragraph with may seem, subconsciously at least, to be describing a situation to feel sorry about as we witness scenes on TV or online. But when I say starvation, destruction, migration, disease and war, I mean in your own life. With the power down, soon you wouldn’t have water coming out of your tap. You will depend on your neighbours for food and some warmth. You will become malnourished. You won’t know whether to stay or go. You will fear being violently killed before starving to death.
These descriptions may seem overly dramatic. Some readers might consider them an unacademic form of writing. Which would be an interesting comment on why we even write at all.
Don’t you judge me.
Leadership theorist Jonathan Gosling has raised the question of whether we need a more “radical hope” in the context of climate change and a growing sense of “things falling apart” (Gosling, 2016). He invites us to explore what we could learn from other cultures that have faced catastrophe. Examining the way Native American Indians coped with being moved on to reservations, Lear (2008) looked at what he calls the “blind spot” of any culture: the inability to conceive of its own destruction and possible extinction.
How does one become a “leadership theorist”? Does it have anything to do with “‘terror management theory’ proposed by Jeff Greenberg, Sheldon Solomon, and Tom Pyszczynski (2015)”?
The third factor influencing denial is institutional. I have worked for over 20 years within or with organisations working on the sustainability agenda, in non-profit, private and governmental sectors. In none of these sectors is there an obvious institutional self-interest in articulating the probability or inevitability of social collapse.
Yes. Silence is common among the Greenpeaces of the world.
For instance, there are thousands of people on Facebook groups who believe human extinction is near. In such groups I have witnessed how people who doubt extinction is either inevitable or coming soon are disparaged by some participants for being weak and deluded.
Facebook knows best.
Writing about that perspective makes me sad. Even four years after I first let myself consider near-term extinction properly, not as something to dismiss, it still makes my jaw drop, eyes moisten, and air escape my lungs. I have seen how the idea of INTHE [Inevitable Near Term Human Extinction] can lead me to focus on truth, love and joy in the now, which is wonderful, but how it can also make me lose interest in planning for the future. And yet I always come around to the same conclusion — we do not know.
At least I now see why Vice loves this paper. We’ll stop here.