When the whole is less than the parts

–Nature’s on an investment strike; nature as pre-mortem living shrines to nudge the rich to do something they haven’t; nature as a fixture like baby Jesus to the Virgin Mary in all those Renaissance paintings; no, it’s institutions that are nature’s decoys; whatever, nature being replaced before having time not to fail.

–Repeatedly said: The post-apocalyptic novel–doomer lit generally—nails home the fact that we don’t need widespread fear and dread of COLLAPSE to provoke remedy and progress, because, well, we no longer believe in either. Less repeatedly said: But this means you are still here, reading the very words.

–Take a linear sequence—left – center – right—and slide that middle term, “center,” downwards. You’ve made a triangle, or a hammock that sags in the middle.

–Catastrophism is too elitist for its own good when claiming system failure is just what vox populi ordered and deserve. That too is the problem with irony. It, like catastrophism, is a knowingness, not knowledge. As when people are more wont to quote Wittgenstein that death is not an event in life than they are to quote Rilke about death being the part of life turned away from us.

–“To co-exist, one must first of all exist.” Amilcar Cabral, 1964

–Janet Flanner, the journalist, reported in 1945 from war-struck Paris: “Everything here is a substitute for everything else.” Think: Cigarettes could be traded for food, food could be traded for clothes, clothes could be traded for furniture, and so on. It is in disaster where everything is connected to everything else; that’s why the only thing complete is “complete disaster” these days.

–Just what is missed by way of existential threats, for example, when the only ones outsiders see are insiders being forced to leave because of one threat but forced to stay because of another? Climate migrants are driven out, but have nowhere else to go or wherewithal to do so, the outsider finds. What’s missed is the evidence that many migrants don’t see themselves as victims.

–Surely the response to the headline, “Uncertainty is not our friend,” is: It’s more complicated than that.

–They read less as crisis scenarios in need of details than grudges passed off as threats.

–We’d like to believe that an idea isn’t responsible for those who believe it. But that misses something important: Professing ideas reflects intentions, and intentions are part of action.

–To “see” ignorance means sensing it indirectly through surprise, shock or the quasi-object of contingency. Ignorance leaves traces, and traces mean that ignorance is never “placeless.”

–“Policymakers also need to worry about those other factors—societal, political, economic, historical, cultural, geographical, governmental, psychological, technological, ethical, religious etc etc—that are so undeniably central to our lives.” That pincushion of “etcetera’s”! Indicating things are just critical enough to note but not that critical to clutter up by specifying!

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