Home | About | Donate

Ten Billion Reasons to Demand System Change


Ten Billion Reasons to Demand System Change

Rajesh Makwana

Has the international community left it too late to prevent runaway climate change and widespread ecological degradation? Does the typical citizen and career politician have the inclination to accept the severity of the ‘planetary emergency’, let alone make the lifestyle changes and policy decisions needed to address it? And can the upcoming UN climate negotiations in Paris really signal an end to the unregulated dumping of carbon emissions, or mark a shift away from the business-as-usual approach to economic development?


Interesting film review.

I wonder if the Professor might not be compromised? The fact that he doesn't mention the corporate barons who control the discussions that lead to policy decisions, and that his focus is on generic population numbers rather than particular usage patterns enjoyed by specific demographics, and that he salutes nuclear power all make me question WHERE he's coming from. (These happen to be the same Talking points I've found in this forum here.)

And the fact that the film essentially conveys the existential message that "there is no way out" is very questionable.

When citizens DO protest, they become a blip on the media's broadcast streams IF they are mentioned at all. Often police show up to use brutality to break up protests; and then there's the damnable fact that so many things being fought for today have been fought for for forty plus years.

The Environmental (protection) movement began back then, as did Civil Rights (being threatened by odious Supreme Court decisions, the War on Drugs and its capacity to produce a new Plantation System, the I.D. voting card laws, and so much police brutality); add in the Women's movement--also threatened by right wing patriarchal zealots who think choice means what THEY determine women can do with their own bodies.

There are also slap-suits, the realization that the Supreme Court along with most politicians merely serve big money.

All over the world people are protesting. The rigors of the neo-liberal economics is such that most people are working harder, enduring longer labor hours and greater job insecurity to ensure a roof over their families' heads. And that takes energy... away from causes that matter. I think this economic system of invisible slavery is strategically in place to exhaust people so that they have less available time/energy/enthusiasm to fight what many believe will not change.

Then, all that anger ends up channeled into America's version of the brown-shirts.

I watched an old L.A. Law episode yesterday that was based on a right wing shock jock who showed a lot of hatred towards liberals trying to fight to help the poor. Some members of the audience beat his liberal guest to death and that became the legal drama.

I felt like it was almost a mirror-reflection of what Trump is doing today. It was season 3, episode 18 or 19.


Funny that they never mention that meat production is by far the number one driver of climate change, having more impact than all other causes combined. Absurd that the solution to the climate change problem is known and these idiots announce that nuclear energy is the only practical solution. I suppose they had their great nuclear energy insight while dining on steak.


I stopped reading when I got to Prof Emmot's support for nuclear energy.


This post was flagged by the community and is temporarily hidden.


This post was flagged by the community and is temporarily hidden.


But there is little emphasis on how unfettered consumerism in industrialized countries poses the real ecological threat, and not population growth in the Global South.
And despite framing the crisis as a ‘planetary emergency’ only fleeting attention is paid to the reality of world poverty and life-threatening deprivation, which is a substantial oversight given that 4.2 billion people are struggling to survive on less than $5 a day and 17 million people die needlessly every year – mainly in developing countries.

How could someone write those two sentences almost one after the other and not see any contradiction?


This sounds like a good film to miss. Almost everything it says seems to be wrong—our problem is neither numbers of people nor capitalism (consumerism), it's the lives of a few percent of people on Earth. The solutions are clean renewable energy, reforestation, low-meat organic permaculture, ecological craft-industry, and in the longer run, solving the psychological issues at the heart of every problem we have so our economic issues become moot.

And PS, it seems the population experts are lowering their projections for population, FINALLY taking into account the increasing effects of climate catastrophe on birth and especially death rates. The latest I read was 8.9 billion instead of the formerly popular 9-11, then 9-10 b. It's still not right but they're getting there.


By today's standards, I quite agree with you. By the new standards that could have possibly been established by now if Obama had provided the 400 million USD in research funds to the nuclear energy scientists working on the future nuclear generation of reactors, the Generation IV, the whole nuclear energy world would make a much safer and cleaner reactor, whose main achievement would be to use all the spent fuel of the preceding reactor generations, the fuel that the industry is hiding underground, keeping in cooling basins, and also possibly dumping into the oceans, etc. It was said that the polluting oil industry didn't want a cleaner nuclear industry as a real, effective and safe commercial opponent...

See the Generation IV info here: http://www.world-nuclear.org/info/Nuclear-Fuel-Cycle/Power-Reactors/Generation-IV-Nuclear-Reactors/


Yes there is. Yes there is. Yes there is.
Protest and civil disobedience are time honored traditions which have generally served well. There is another way that has opened up in the last three years; it's a parallel pathway,( not either/ or), and it has many wonderful characteristics such as being democratic, energy efficient, likely to improve the dickens out of your Carbon Footprint, LOVING, upbeat, relatively easy to learn and practice, Effective, and more, much more. Plus, it's exciting, and it is going to be a lot of FUN.
We call it; Living in the HEART. In this vision of Creation the Heart Center has the last say in decision making. We are all connected through our hearts. And this is our true connection, not only to ourselves, and each other ,but also to the Earth, to God, and Creation itself. By linking our Hearts together in numbers for short periods(which is feasible), we can and will participate in our own evolution toward a more sustainable, just, War less civilization. And all the other Goodness we all long for. Really all we need to do is start doing it. Here's how.
Fortunately for us (all six or seven billion of us) an immediate opportunity for learning this ' on the job' so to speak is at hand. It's, of course, COP21 in Paris, France starting this Sunday(Nov. 30, 2015). This post is for everyone, and not just the environmental community everyone, it's for everyone, everywhere on Earth. And, especially all for of us who won't be able to go to Paris, but still have a burning desire to participate. Some people will excel quickly in this new environment, others not so quickly, but all of us can get on board. Likely it will take a while for everyone to get the hang of it. As you get going, look around, help others. Children are likely to be among the top successful early adaptors.
Each person has the responsibility to find your own way. That said, this is a collective process. Here is a thumbnail brief on how some of us connect. First, always, get in touch with your Heart, and teach yourself to stay centered there. Next set aside thirty minutes a couple of times a day during the twelve days of COP21 to connect to the Event. Real time coverage is good. Learning to connect to the Earth(our mother), and to the Sky(God) and to Creation and to opening up a portal in your heart space to all other hearts is a very individual experience. At first especially it will take effort on your part and no small amount of courage. Hang in there, you will make it. When that happens you will know it. It's distinct. Ok, take a nice deep relaxed breath and just enjoy the experience. It's the connected human mind. You are going to LOVE it.
Once you are in this connected state you can set individual intentions and then focus on parts or all of the goings on at COP21. So, two things to remember. Stay centered in the Heart, and at least for this event because I say so; Cooperation Rules.
Oh, and find as much pleasure as you can muster from this new way forward. It's loaded.


What you need to understand is that there is a criminal cabal running our country and most of the world. The world banks, the major corporations and the policy making of America and her minions are now controlling most everything, including the Military. The Military has the ability to manipulate the weather all around the planet. This isn't some kind of joke but a horrible reality. Therefore for at least a decade they have been creating enormous areas of heat or cold at their will. The same thing goes for the enormous rainfall in an area or extreme drought in other areas. Many of these "events" are "never before seen" or "once in hundred year" events and are not "normal".
Read about H.A.A.R.P. technology. See the chemtrails being sprayed over your skies and the skies of other nations. Read the book: "Chemtrails, HAARP and the Full Spectrum Dominance of Planet Earth" by Elana Freeland. Well documented and so informative as to scare you to death with the information of what can be done and is being done.
The global warming is a sham on the people and nations to PAY huge taxes on their carbon emissions which will do nothing but enable the schemesters to get rich. If a neocon can steal, he will and will constantly look for larger ways to do it. We are in a fight for our lives and livelihood here folks. Please get informed before you jump on the sham wagon of global warming so you can know WHO is falsely causing it all the while telling people that "they" are the problem.


yes there is in fact something we can do, and I agree it is not taking to the streets to get sprayed with poison, and beat up and jailed and ignored.

to say it in short, cut up our credit cards without paying them off, put solar panels on our roofs, and eat local organic only. the waves from those three actions if even only 1/3, critical mass, would do it, would be enough to make a huge dent.

regenerative organic farming including grass finished beef and truly free range chicken is not only healthy for our bodies it is healthy for the soil and the air.

it is unhealthy for the parasitic big corporate agriculture and big beef and chicken and eggs.

stop being a usury slave. set yourself free from big banks and interest payments. let them go without for a change.

if you have a roof, why are you paying for electricity? I am typing this with electricity made by the sun right now. I pay no electric company. if I can do it anyone can.


Sounds like most people here are still in the Bargaining Stage relative to where we are with climate change. I have moved on to the Acceptance Stage and beyond. Even if we shut down civilization we would still have to deal the the reduction of cooling chemicals which would make the planet get warmer still. Is there a way out of this mess? I think not, without some techno geoengineering, which could make things worse.
That said, yes eating less meat is something most of us could do but will not do. The major eco groups do not push it but instead go after the fossil fuel industry. Amazon Watch is one exception because of the problems associated with cattle in South America.


Those are all good things to do. I've spent my life doing them and being surrounded by others who do them.

But personal solutions, especially by the small percentage of people who care enough to change their lives, can't possibly change enough, fast enough, to make any difference. The vast majority of ignorant, duped, and uncaring people will go on living as they are, in the system that makes anything else very difficult, and you'll have little satisfaction in saying "not my fault."

Governments are not going to make the needed changes; corporations are obviously not going to. If it's going to be done it has to be by us, and since all legislative and legal means are now closed off to us it has to be in the streets. whatever the cost—pepper spray, guns, beatings…—nothing else will work.

When we talk about being in the streets we're not talking about the kind of protest that happened on the first day of war in 2003—a fun Saturday stroll followed by months of doing nothing but watching the war on TV. We're talking about surrounding and blockading mines, drilling rigs, government offices, Congress, and of course corporate offices and headquarters—the real centers of power. Either the corporations and government react violently or they surrender in some way. Every violent attack on peaceful protestors opens the eyes of more of the public and we increase our numbers. Every surrender brings us an advance in position that sets up the next, more demanding and more provocative action to force them into their dilemma of either attacking or surrendering.


So Jazonian when will YOU be starting one of these at any cost actions in the streets? Tomorrow? Next week? Is there any time to waste? Time to wait?

Will YOU be organizing something yourself or are you only telling other people to do these things "at any cost"?
Please let us know when YOU have been out there in the streets YOURSELF doing anything at all because you sure talk that talk...about what you think OTHER people should do. Yeah you really do.


You imply I haven't. Yet another conclusion you've leapt to, completely without evidence. I'm pretty sure you have no idea what I've done and what I haven't done, yet you act as if you know. Please stop doing that.

In any case, it's an ad hominem attack being used to distract from the issue—is the argument valid or not? Is this what we have to do or is there another way? If there is an easier way, please tell us what it is. I'd much prefer that of course. If you have no other ideas that will work and you're only using this tactic to attack me because your anger and paranoia have caused you to think I disagreed with you when I didn't, and you disagreed with me over positions I never took and things I never said,


then please stop doing that.


Spare us the baloney okay?
But do let us know when you yourself do anything "at any cost" like you blithely advise others doing. What are you waiting for in fact?

Yeah it is easy to talk that talk and those who have actually walked that walk don't go telling other people to do such things without first telling them what they have done themselves lest they be seen as phonies and hypocrites .


If you have any evidence that you know who I am or what I've done or haven't done, please show it. If you have better ideas about how to change the course of civilization, please share them. Otherwise, maybe you should just read what I say and click the little heart button.

Thanks for your input, Wereflea.


zonian, I agree, not enough people will do what I suggest. that's why
I said IF people would do it. but of course they won't. and frankly
neither will they do battle in the streets.

so in reality what is probable is a protracted decline in comfort.
then after most Americans are F ed, and a great culling of the worlds
population has taken place, and migration and resources are causing
wars, THEN probably there will be some effort to make the necessary
changes to salvage what is left. I just read that the inland of the
middle east has about 80 years left and then it will be uninhabitable
by humans.
W, I'm also not interested in discussing personalities in this thread. just ideas.


I have faith in people. People like you in fact. People who put solar on their roof and do things that will need to be done by everyone.
I don't have faith in those who sit at home and tell others to do stuff that isn't explained (to put it mildly) and at any cost.
What a crock. How about the cost of putting solar on their roof as you asked!

People don't realize how much work and dedication it takes to organize something whether a March for peace or a March for getting off fossil fuels. There is a place for civil disobedience but the cost is possible arrest not facing guns as some fools have already said in this thread. Give me a break!
The government must take action to get us off fossil fuels and fund solar and wind conversion. That won't be easy to do but great progress is being made as compared to even a few years ago.

We need organizers and I wish I was young again when I was one because it takes work not talk.