Richard Heinberg published a good short little essay online that serves up a good title and general thoughts for the present moment here in early 2017. It might be as good as anything as general thoughts go for right now, a couple of days past the inauguration of Donald Trump as President of the United States of America, the 45th President.
It might be stating the obvious a wee tad bit to say that an awful lot of people are finding this to be an extremely surreal state of affairs that are something of a struggle to deal with, and this is clearly true not only for Americans, but people in many places around the globe. It definitely continues a thread that, unfortunately, has dominated the topic set of my little notes here in this obscure corner of the interwebz, which, if I had to summarize neatly, might be: politics is making people nuts. As tiresome as it is, the battiness absolutely tends to continue to swirl around the dual strange attractors of bipolar political disorder.
Heinberg is, as always, an attentive, thinking, and generally sensible mind and soul, which, in this time and place, makes him a little known character. He’s not a noisy obnoxious character blasting out simplistic text blurbs and sound bites and is very unlikely to make the list of invitation to take part in ten minute “panel discussions” of pompous idiot bloviation on cable TV “news” programming.
So there he is, quietly, earnestly, sensibly offering thoughts on a regular basis about our circumstances here and now and how to live as human beings on this big ball flying through space we call the planet Earth, while people bounce off the walls ignoring him and anyone generally like him.
I was slightly amazed to see an item pop up in the noise feed online where a character I had not heard of before that I can recall, stating in very simple terms the ways he thought America had gone wrong over recent decades, which, of course, probably has a hard time getting through all the noise of all kinds of people barking about how they argue “America has gone wrong”. In simplest terms, he said that the country has set itself up in all sorts of complicated bad problems in a couple of broad areas; the collection of insanity, illusions and flat out frauds in the broad world of banking and finance that is generally referred to under the broad name of “Wall Street”, along with (and possibly closely related to) the general insanity of a long term program to make the United States of America into The American Empire, a worldwide military empire dominating the world.
That might not cover everything, but it covers a lot.
Heinberg’s essay suggesting a quiet walk in the woods as a healthy remedy of sorts as Trumptopia takes the stage is a simple good dose of something I think quite a few people need, getting away from the noise. Leave the mobile phone somewhere else, by the way. It has been said to me that when I write here I am guilty of being “long winded”, but I often think that the length is necessary, for more than one reason, one of these being that it might be one small way that I can help settle somebody down for more than five seconds to reflect on some things themselves. Sometimes I think that sometime in the future there might be a fairly broad agreement of understanding that Twitter, for one thing, might have actually been one of the worst things to come down the pike ever in terms of communication and understanding among people, even as people seem to think this has been some fantastic development to make people more “connected”.
A book of 140 pages is actually a fairly short book, barely enough to do a rough skim of many subjects. Now, many people seem to think that a little note of 140 words is long winded rambling or something, and we have a pretense of real communication via a digital communications medium where the limit is 140 characters. Unreal.
Let’s not get too diverted by that right now, though.
An awfully long list of items get missed in the squawking noise that tends to surround people these days. This is hardly a new item, and if you read my little essays here it might be ridiculously redundant, but it keeps happening and the list keeps growing, while the general public keeps getting more buried in the noise.
One item is staggering, and somehow manages to be almost completely ignored as far as I can tell, about the basic common bumblebee becoming an endangered species.
It is still far too common to find examples of knuckleheads snorting derisively about “global warming” as some silly hoax nonsense, even as we have what seems to be a developing regular pattern of reports that the previous year ended up being a new record for overall temperatures, and, maybe more significant, weather patterns in general seem to keep getting more strange and volatile.
I think I brought this up in the last note, but I was, what, maybe bemused is the right word, to come across an item coming out of MIT, that suggested a list of the really important things people should learn about to be well informed citizens of the 21st century.
The same word might get a workout while considering another recent story sneaking into the news about the CEO of Exxon Mobil, Trump’s choice to be Secretary of State, you will recall, apparently having some objections to the oil extraction methods of hydraulic fracturing being used in the area where he lives. Imagine that.