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Objective driven cities

Re: Objective driven cities
April 30, 2014, 07:46:26 PM
Post peak oil is one possible scenario. Barring some miracle development to replace fossil fuels, oil would end up de-democratized and instead reserved for emergencies only. That shouldn't exclude the rise of pre-modern empire but it would radically reform our social, economic and cultural experiences. Technology and its distribution would greatly vary. We would seldom see cutting edge but development should be able to continue even if 95% live a 19th century life.

Re: Objective driven cities
May 01, 2014, 06:21:04 AM
Absolutely, Empire is just one of those activities that isn't going anywhere. The budding Eastern Empires are flowering in an age of scarcity and will be better equipped to handle this period than America and the west. The third world might just thrive due largely to having experienced the standard of living that is to be expected as we slide down the oil peak. 

Progressivism is going to decline significantly. Its core suppositions do not address the world we live in, and the world we face. It's antireligion elements in the alt. right fail in the same regard because they posit, like the believers, that Progress will continue except that the end of the road is hell, not Paradise. Interesting times.

Re: Objective driven cities
May 01, 2014, 07:57:35 AM
Quote
"We are using 50% more resources than the Earth can sustainably produce, and unless we change course, that number will grow fast—by 2030, even two planets will not be enough," says Jim Leape, director general of the World Wide Fund for Nature International (formerly the World Wildlife Fund).

But here's a peculiar feature of human history: We burst through such limits again and again. After all, as a Saudi oil minister once said, the Stone Age didn't end for lack of stone. Ecologists call this "niche construction"—that people (and indeed some other animals) can create new opportunities for themselves by making their habitats more productive in some way. Agriculture is the classic example of niche construction: We stopped relying on nature's bounty and substituted an artificial and much larger bounty.

http://online.wsj.com/news/articles/SB10001424052702304279904579517862612287156

Petroleum is too specialized of a resource for us to readily invent some random replacement. It isn't stone or copper for which numerous replacements are and were known. There is nothing available with the energy density and the distribution viability of that particular resource. On the application side are all of the billions of machines that must utilize petrol specifically in rather exact states of refinement for the machine to function. Can the world economy stand to totally reengineer virtually every machine and power plant? There is a lot of faith-based messianic economist Jesusthink afoot in this article with no grounding in physics but much in unrelated parts of history.

Re: Objective driven cities
May 01, 2014, 08:32:38 AM
Quote
"We are using 50% more resources than the Earth can sustainably produce, and unless we change course, that number will grow fast—by 2030, even two planets will not be enough," says Jim Leape, director general of the World Wide Fund for Nature International (formerly the World Wildlife Fund).

But here's a peculiar feature of human history: We burst through such limits again and again. After all, as a Saudi oil minister once said, the Stone Age didn't end for lack of stone. Ecologists call this "niche construction"—that people (and indeed some other animals) can create new opportunities for themselves by making their habitats more productive in some way. Agriculture is the classic example of niche construction: We stopped relying on nature's bounty and substituted an artificial and much larger bounty.

http://online.wsj.com/news/articles/SB10001424052702304279904579517862612287156

Petroleum is too specialized of a resource for us to readily invent some random replacement. It isn't stone or copper for which numerous replacements are and were known. There is nothing available with the energy density and the distribution viability of that particular resource. On the application side are all of the billions of machines that must utilize petrol specifically in rather exact states of refinement for the machine to function. Can the world economy stand to totally reengineer virtually every machine and power plant? There is a lot of faith-based messianic economist Jesusthink afoot in this article with no grounding in physics but much in unrelated parts of history.

All of the talk of transition to renewables ignores the basic facts you outline. Unless the replacement for oil can fit in a fuel tank and be distributed using our current infrastructure, the hope of maintaining current levels of industry is shot. Maybe in the seventies, there was enough liquid fuel left to transition (back) to a renewable base while maintaining a modest level of industry. Not so today.

Economic mythology suggests energy resources are interchangable and thus it's simply a matter of swapping out liquid fuels for something else so Progress can continue.

Re: Objective driven cities
May 01, 2014, 09:26:54 AM
The debate is shaping up in a manner similar to that of the theists versus the atheists. The theists may cite a series of past miracles against the odds. The atheists may acknowledge all the past miracles but remind the theists that the next expected miracle nonetheless isn't therefore guaranteed and additionally represents a deviation in kind from all the rest.

This secular faith in man's inevitable overcoming is simply an outgrowth of modern liberal progressivism. That in turn as has been restated here so much (and perhaps by Nietzsche) is simply a result of our transformation from a theocentric to an anthropocentric culture, not an evolutionary step. Familiar evangelical "good news gospel" hallmarks are reflected in typical liberal proclamations like that shown in the quoted Wall Street Journal article.

I'd say hoping for microfusion power plants is equivalent to centering our society around the Second Coming. Not very prudent!

Re: Objective driven cities
May 01, 2014, 09:50:00 AM
The debate is shaping up in a manner similar to that of the theists versus the atheists. The theists may cite a series of past miracles against the odds. The atheists may acknowledge all the past miracles but remind the theists that the next expected miracle nonetheless isn't therefore guaranteed and additionally represents a deviation in kind from all the rest.


This secular faith in man's inevitable overcoming is simply an outgrowth of modern liberal progressivism. That in turn as has been restated here so much (and perhaps by Nietzsche) is simply a result of our transformation from a theocentric to an anthropocentric culture, not an evolutionary step. Familiar evangelical "good news gospel" hallmarks are reflected in typical liberal proclamations like that shown in the quoted Wall Street Journal article.



I'd say hoping for microfusion power plants is equivalent to centering our society around the Second Coming. Not very prudent!

Nietzsche definitely critiqued Progressivism in Zarathustra. In fact he critiqued all its rival models vying for the void left by the death of God. In my opinion, those critiques as well as other insights into the nature of ideas will always be his most valuable contribution. His philosophy on the other hand, is disposable.

It's ironic for a civilization which praises science as much as ours to ignore the laws of physics in the pursuit of fusion energy. You need a compressive force on the plasma to keep fusion reaction (relatively) stable without ripping the machine apart. That force has to be resistant to electro magnetic shifts. There are only a small handful of forces in the Universe we know of and the only one resistant to those shifts is gravity. Gravity doesn't provide sufficient compression to allow for viable fusion reaction on a scale smaller than a star.

The power of myth.

Re: Objective driven cities
May 01, 2014, 10:03:29 AM
Shifts between theocentrism and anthropocentrism are common throughout human history. I don't agree with the common assertions that place Progressivism squarely with liberalism. I think, as the dominant religion of our time, it finds it's way into politics as one would expect of religion. If you know the narratives you can find them at work, at least since the enlightenment, in all major political alignments.

Of course, the conservatives up until the 20th century were something of a vanguard against Progress, however they no longer exist in any meaningful sense. Ad I've mentioned before, the reactionaries still buy into the narrative but preach doom. In a less binary view, Republicans (Liberals) believe their policies will bring prosperity, technological and moral Progress. Though the outward forms differ from the open Progressives and open Liberals, the underlying belief structure is identical.