I was watching Frankie Boyle’s New World Order tonight and amid all the political ‘satire’, sex references and inane giggles was a thoughtful piece by George Monbiot. I have read his stuff before in the Guardian and I understand where he is coming from but I have never before heard such a cogent analysis of the problems the world faces.
Incidentally, I tend to read a wide range of newspapers on a sort of cycle – whoah, that doesn’t mean that I cycle as I read, that would be irresponsible – no I mean that one day I may read the Guardian, the next it might be the Times, occasionally at the weekend I dip into the Telegraph or the Observer and perhaps more frequently I will read the Independent or the ‘i’. I tend to stay clear of the rabid press, the Mail and Express are just crowd-baiters, the Sun is unacceptable even with which to wipe my arse and the Mirror and Star are for those people who still miss the News of the World.
Interestingly these days I get my immediate news fix online often by checking sources from FaceBook posts, sifting through the Huffington Post or other semi-independent media and, very occasionally checking the BBC News website. It used to be that I accepted what the BBC presented as gospel, unbiassed, accurate and independent. Not any more, I’ve been caught out too many times and am wary of their output now.
But back to George Monbiot. What he was essentially saying was that the planet is well nigh fucked. At some point there will be a tipping point over which we will slide into terminal ecological disaster. The trouble, he pointed out, is that we won’t recognise it as a tipping point until after we have tipped. It could be tomorrow.
The next thing he said was, or should be, inspired. We should stop fucking about changing our cotton buds to a more sustainable type or using recycled bags or pissing about trying to do without single use plastic. This is only fiddling at the fringes and won’t make a ha’pence of difference to the survival of the planet. Our systems of commerce are broken and our governments, all of them, are complicit. For example: We measure success as a nation by showing an increase in its gross domestic product (GDP). What we are really saying is that every year we must produce 3% more, every country, every year. So by 2055 we need to be producing double what we are producing today. Why? Why is this a suitable measure of a county’s success? Who will need double what they have now? Where will they keep it?
He went onto talk about the elite preparing for what they expect to be (they’re not stupid) the eventual but inevitable breakdown of society/civilisation, building secure complexes manned by hordes of security guards keeping the losers of our society away. Who is this elite? These are the owners of the planet who have, over the last half century, conned us by advertising and manipulation into believing that we should buy the latest QLED 8K 3D television this year and discard it the next year for another alphabet soup of meaningless technologies. The elite who make us believe that by taking 100,000 selfies and buying beauty products we will never use we will in some way become as successful or as beautiful as they are. IT IS A CONFIDENCE TRICK WE ARE PLAYING ON OURSELVES. We will never become as ‘worthy’ as a Rupert Murdoch, a Boris Johnson, a Mark Zuckerberg or an Elizabeth Windsor. I will never have the face or figure of any of the Kardashians. They either started off with untold millions their ancestors stole from serfs and slaves or they cynically manipulated the hordes of sheeples in the world into pouring vast unimaginable sums into their deep pockets like a black hole sucking the very light from the heavens.
If Brexit has achieved anything it has shown us our political ‘representatives’ in their true light. Self serving turncoats who care nothing for the dumb electorate except to create another lie to persuade us to keep them at the trough. Our political system is as unfit for purpose as our economic system. Neither will be fixed by the participants – it’s not in their interests to change. Only by worldwide revolution can we hope to steer this global monolith to a new course which values people more than commodities and works for world success not one nation against another. Are we not sick of two opposing political parties taking it in turn to get nose down in the trough to vacuum up all our hard earned wealth for their vanity projects? I am!
What does George Monbiot conclude? Are we as individuals truly powerless to effect change? A couple of things might begin to make a difference to the world. Switching to a plant based diet would start to reduce the horrendous ecological cost of clearing land to produce polluting meat. Stop jetting around the globe in search of a holiday like those the rich and famous boast about. That would reduce the CO2 damage to our atmosphere. Oh, and fix our broken political system now!
But of course our elite don’t want you to do that. If you do not consume then they do not control.