Not the Answer
Its one thing when you write about the way you see the universe, its another thing when you read that the intelligence establishment agrees.
Here are some excerpts from a piece by a London Muslim who has recently been blackballed because of his writings about the London bombings.
"According to an American source with high-level access to the US military, political and intelligence establishment, Western policymakers are in no doubt that the world faces the imminent convergence of multiple global crises.
These crises threaten not only to undermine the basis of Western power in its current military and geopolitical configurations, but also to destabilize the entire foundations of industrial civilization.
The source said that the latest petroleum data indicates that "global oil production most likely peaked two years ago." This is consistent with the findings of respected geologists such as leading oil depletion expert Dr. Colin Campbell, who in the late 90s predicted that world oil production would peak in the early 21st century. "We have come to the end of the first half of the Oil Age," said Dr. Campbell, who has a doctorate in geology from the University of Oxford and more than 40 years of experience in the oil industry.
Similarly, Kenneth Deffeyes, a geologist and professor emeritus at Princeton University, estimates the occurrence of the peak near the end of last year.
The source also said that leading US financial analysts privately believe that "a collapse of the global banking system is imminent by 2008." Although the warning is consistent with the public findings of other experts, this is the first time that a more precise date has been estimated.
In a prescient analysis drawing on highly placed financial sources, US historian Gabriel Kolko, professor emeritus at York University, concluded in late July that:
"All the factors which make for crashes – excessive leveraging, rising interest rates, etc. – exist... Contradictions now wrack the world's financial system, and a growing consensus now exists between those who endorse it and those, like myself, who believe the status quo is both crisis-prone as well as immoral.
If we are to believe the institutions and personalities who have been in the forefront of the defense of capitalism, and we should, it may very well be on the verge of serious crises."
The source also commented on the danger posed by rapid climate change. Although most conventional estimates suggest that global climate catastrophe is not due before another 30 odd years, he argued that the multiplication of several "tipping-points" suggested that a series of devastating climatic events could be "triggered within the next 10 to 15 years."
Once again, this is consistent with the findings of other experts, most recently a joint task-force report by the Institute for Public Policy Research in the UK, the Center for American Progress in the US, and the Australia Institute, which said in January last year that if the average world temperature rises "two degrees centigrade above the average world temperature prevailing in 1750 before the industrial revolution", it would trigger an irreversible chain of climatic disasters.
In its report, the task-force says:"The possibilities include reaching climatic tipping points leading, for example, to the loss of the West Antarctic and Greenland ice sheets (which, between them, could raise sea level more than 10 meters over the space of a few centuries), the shutdown of the thermohaline ocean circulation (and, with it, the Gulf Stream), and the transformation of the planet's forests and soils from a net sink of carbon to a net source of carbon.
"The source also revealed that US generals had repeatedly war-gamed a prospective conflict with Iran, but consistently found that the simulations predicted "an absolute nuclear disaster", from which no clear winner would emerge. The scenarios gamed were so dismal, he said, that the generals briefed administration officials to avoid such a war at all costs.
However, the source said that the Bush administration is ignoring the fears of the US military.
Despite the seeming gloominess of the situation, however, there is clearly fundamental dissent about the current trajectory of American and Western policy at the highest levels of power.
The source remarked that "humanity is on the verge of a precipice, and either we'll all just drop off the edge, or we'll evolve.
I'm not sure what that new human being might look like, but it will clearly have to involve a completely new set of ideas and values, a new way of looking at the world that respects life and nature."
I know one thing for sure.
I agree with Howard Zinn.
War is not the answer
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