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Covid-19 is another effect of a crowded, stressed ecosystem.  We're adapting through smaller groupings and social distancing.  Given the likelihood of more disasters to come -- flooding, drought, food shortage, mass migration, culture/class conflict -- how can we adapt so that we're no longer so vulnerable to upheaval?  If we need access to global information and supply chains, we should also be able to raise the drawbridge and shelter-in-place without crumbling.  We've seen how highways, trains and airways are conduits not only of goods but biohazards and other threats. 

The internet was created to provide a communications network that would survive nuclear war because large parts of the network could shut down without disabling the web.  We need to be more self-sufficient and live more locally.  It won't be the end of travel or the workplace, but we're learning the meaning in this pandemic of essential service, what we really need.  When we can virtually experience most parts of the world through satellite and minicam, when we can hold meetings online, and when we see the risks of mass consumption and waste, heavy traffic, poor water/air quality, and depleted fisheries and forests, it's time for a rethink.  Can we enjoy a better quality of life with less work and stress?  Can automation liberate rather than displace us, freeing up more time and meeting our needs less expensively?  

We can have just about all we need in our community: local food and energy, a vibrant downtown, plenty of nature.  Could technology and the right infrastructure safeguard us from threats like pandemics, cyber attacks, and foreign invasion?  Could we live so lightly on the land that our self-sustainability no longer burdens ecosystems or makes us beholden to foreign powers?  Terrible as the current situation may seem, there's a chance for an evolutionary leap to a smarter, more resilient society.  Thoughts?  

 

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30 minutes ago, Zeitgeist said:

Could we live so lightly on the land that our self-sustainability no longer burdens ecosystems or makes us beholden to foreign powers?  Terrible as the current situation may seem, there's a chance for an evolutionary leap to a smarter, more resilient society.  Thoughts?  

We should rebuild the new economy as if this was the climate action economic apocalypse that's been predicted forever. Did anyone imagine that would be worse than what we're faced with now?

In any case there's no way environmentalists will stand for regrowing the Before Times economy if it'll mean removing all the things that are barriers to growth, like climate action. And I guarantee you the calls to do so will be even more desperate than they are now if the rebuilding is done according to business as usual.

 

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3 hours ago, Zeitgeist said:

...The internet was created to provide a communications network that would survive nuclear war because large parts of the network could shut down without disabling the web.

 

In some ways, this already answers your larger question(s).

The elementary internet for TCP/IP packet switching communications was developed by government for military applications long before advancing into the World Wide Web and associated global boom in communications, commerce, social media, etc., that easily crosses local and national boundaries.   It was needed to maintain connectivity for nuclear war, not conventional world wars that were fought, won, and survived with legacy technology like horses, petroleum powered machines, and land lines + undersea cables.    The now defunct telegraph/telegrams had similar impact over a century earlier.

It was the existential threat (nuclear war) that spurred internet development, not retrenchment into legacy technologies or local independence that might be more survivable.   This pandemic will not force us to go backward, but to go forward knowing what the weak links are and how to improve them.

Based on what happened after the Spanish Flu pandemic (1918),  I would expect more investment and doubling down on health care systems, international cooperation (WHO is woefully underfunded), population density measures, and the usual pursuit of drug therapies/vaccines.   (We use to confine TB patients to sanitoriums before antibiotics.)    Ultimately, pandemics are a social problem that will be endured because the cost of going backwards to more local independence is too much for the vast majority to bear, even when possible.

As an aside, some of the younger folk refer to COVID-19 as a welcomed "Boomer Remover" adaptation. 

 

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1 hour ago, bush_cheney2004 said:

 

In some ways, this already answers your larger question(s).

The elementary internet for TCP/IP packet switching communications was developed by government for military applications long before advancing into the World Wide Web and associated global boom in communications, commerce, social media, etc., that easily crosses local and national boundaries.   It was needed to maintain connectivity for nuclear war, not conventional world wars that were fought, won, and survived with legacy technology like horses, petroleum powered machines, and land lines + undersea cables.    The now defunct telegraph/telegrams had similar impact over a century earlier.

It was the existential threat (nuclear war) that spurred internet development, not retrenchment into legacy technologies or local independence that might be more survivable.   This pandemic will not force us to go backward, but to go forward knowing what the weak links are and how to improve them.

Based on what happened after the Spanish Flu pandemic (1918),  I would expect more investment and doubling down on health care systems, international cooperation (WHO is woefully underfunded), population density measures, and the usual pursuit of drug therapies/vaccines.   (We use to confine TB patients to sanitoriums before antibiotics.)    Ultimately, pandemics are a social problem that will be endured because the cost of going backwards to more local independence is too much for the vast majority to bear, even when possible.

As an aside, some of the younger folk refer to COVID-19 as a welcomed "Boomer Remover" adaptation. 

 

I agree that we can’t go back to a small, isolated village life, but I think we always need to be ready to function as smaller, more self-sufficient entities because we can’t ensure that forms of contagion, cyber attack, or natural disaster won’t spread through the network faster than our ability to contain it.  We need to be able to shut in without shutting down.  Yes, I agree that health and science will be in the ascendant.  We are seeing the technocrats take over from the populists, though there’s some resistance to this as people see their liberties suspended, jobs disappear, and finances dry up.  Clarity around exit strategies and the timing for the ending of this lockdown is essential or there will be profound social, economic, and political consequences.   Such consequences are probably inevitable.

With regard to some young people seeing this catastrophe positively as a “Boomer remover” that will allow them to create a better world, I’d argue that such radical Social Darwinism has worse consequences, because it devalues the wisdom and contributions of the older generations that gave us what we have.  It encourages ageism and says that the vulnerable are expendable.  It’s a morally bankrupt form of fascism.

We need to improve our emergency preparedness, but that will involve more than having bigger stores of medical supplies on hand.  It means building a society that can immediately respond to health, environmental, and other disasters.  The new society will have to be better at resisting and containing threats, but it must not cause such threats in the first place.  

No more building along floodplains.  No more separating work, residential, retail, and other uses across great distances.  No more economic barriers to health care.  No more irregular border crossings and high risk immigration or travel to Canada.  No more environmentally catastrophic building or energy projects, but also no more absurd regulatory barriers to sensible resource development.  No more “shutting down” or damaging the wider society to pander to a privileged few.

I realize there will be quite different and clashing interpretations of what all this means.  The bottom line is that we have to provide for our safety and security in health, food, energy, social cohesion, employment, civil liberties, and air and water quality. Our defences are weaker than we thought.  

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5 minutes ago, Zeitgeist said:

I agree that we can’t go back to a small, isolated village life, but I think we always need to be ready to function as smaller, more self-sufficient entities because we can’t ensure that forms of contagion, cyber attack, or natural disaster won’t spread through the network faster than our ability to contain it.  We need to be able to shut in without shutting down.  Yes, I agree that health and science will be in the ascendant. 

 

A return to local control and self-sufficiency would require significant changes for agriculture, ag labour, energy,  transportation, etc. that would incorporate 19th and early 20th century approaches.   As late as the mid-1960's, my family was able to buy produce on the street from a horse driven cart in a major metropolitan city, but it was a quickly fading way of life.   Ditto home delivery of dairy products, bread, and beer....no internet required.

 

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With regard to some young people seeing this catastrophe positively as a “Boomer remover” that will allow them to create a better world, I would argue that such radical Social Darwinism has worse consequences, because it devalues the wisdom and contributions of the older generations that gave us what we have.  It encourages ageism and says that the vulnerable are expendable.  It’s a morally bankrupt form of fascism.

 

Agreed, but it is just another symptom of the larger challenge....overpopulation, longevity, and urban density.     Nature hates excess for flora or fauna, and viral pandemics are just one way to hold such excess in check.    Ageism is the other side of the coin vs. abortions, and median ages will increase until balanced by the inevitable.   Only more economic development and education can "flatten" the population curve.

 

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We need to improve our emergency preparedness, but that will involve more than having more medical supplies on hand.  It means building a society that can immediately respond to health, environmental, and other disasters.  The new society will have to be better at resisting and containing threats, but it must not cause such threats in the first place. 

 

OK, but at some point we will not be able to counter demand with more and more supply.   Like a tractor pulling contest, we will run out of response capacity.

 

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... No more “shutting down” or damaging the wider society to pander to a privileged few.

I realize there will be quite different and clashing interpretations of what all this means.  The bottom line is that we have to provide for our safety and security in health, food, energy, social cohesion, employment, civil liberties, and air and water quality.  Our defences are weaker than we thought.  

 

I take the longer view and respect that far more people around the world have benefited from developments and dependencies of the past 100 years...more good than harm along a bumpy ride.    We will get through this....make some tweaks..and wait for the next one.     The "dumb" dinosaurs lasted for over 150 million years.

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8 hours ago, Zeitgeist said:

Covid-19 is another effect of a crowded, stressed ecosystem.  We're adapting through smaller groupings and social distancing.  Given the likelihood of more disasters to come -- flooding, drought, food shortage, mass migration, culture/class conflict -- how can we adapt so that we're no longer so vulnerable to upheaval?  If we need access to global information and supply chains, we should also be able to raise the drawbridge and shelter-in-place without crumbling.  We've seen how highways, trains and airways are conduits not only of goods but biohazards and other threats. 

The internet was created to provide a communications network that would survive nuclear war because large parts of the network could shut down without disabling the web.  We need to be more self-sufficient and live more locally.  It won't be the end of travel or the workplace, but we're learning the meaning in this pandemic of essential service, what we really need.  When we can virtually experience most parts of the world through satellite and minicam, when we can hold meetings online, and when we see the risks of mass consumption and waste, heavy traffic, poor water/air quality, and depleted fisheries and forests, it's time for a rethink.  Can we enjoy a better quality of life with less work and stress?  Can automation liberate rather than displace us, freeing up more time and meeting our needs less expensively?  

We can have just about all we need in our community: local food and energy, a vibrant downtown, plenty of nature.  Could technology and the right infrastructure safeguard us from threats like pandemics, cyber attacks, and foreign invasion?  Could we live so lightly on the land that our self-sustainability no longer burdens ecosystems or makes us beholden to foreign powers?  Terrible as the current situation may seem, there's a chance for an evolutionary leap to a smarter, more resilient society.  Thoughts?  

 

House arrest is not  adjustive, if anything its is stop gap maladjustive. As for your other positive and romantic references I am too old for requiring spoon feeding of reality but I do appreciate your attempt to emulate the chin up tally ho attitude of the Brits during WW2.

That said history shows us in crisis  event snew patterns of behaviour can then arise. ...but human nature being what it is we soon revert back to certain negative behaviours.

As a species we have our limits to evolving in an adjustive manner. We are equally propelled to maladjust. Such is the plight of our life form..gifted or cursed with equal components of negative and positive propensities some learned some genetically inherent.

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1 hour ago, Rue said:

House arrest is not  adjustive, if anything its is stop gap maladjustive. As for your other positive and romantic references I am too old for requiring spoon feeding of reality but I do appreciate your attempt to emulate the chin up tally ho attitude of the Brits during WW2.

That said history shows us in crisis  event snew patterns of behaviour can then arise. ...but human nature being what it is we soon revert back to certain negative behaviours.

As a species we have our limits to evolving in an adjustive manner. We are equally propelled to maladjust. Such is the plight of our life form..gifted or cursed with equal components of negative and positive propensities some learned some genetically inherent.

Exactly.  People will develop herd immunity.  There will be vaccines in late fall early winter.  Life will go on.

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3 hours ago, Zeitgeist said:

We need to improve our emergency preparedness, but that will involve more than having bigger stores of medical supplies on hand.  It means building a society that can immediately respond to health, environmental, and other disasters.  The new society will have to be better at resisting and containing threats, but it must not cause such threats in the first place.  

No more building along floodplains.  No more separating work, residential, retail, and other uses across great distances.  No more economic barriers to health care.  No more irregular border crossings and high risk immigration or travel to Canada.  No more environmentally catastrophic building or energy projects, but also no more absurd regulatory barriers to sensible resource development.  No more “shutting down” or damaging the wider society to pander to a privileged few.

I realize there will be quite different and clashing interpretations of what all this means.  The bottom line is that we have to provide for our safety and security in health, food, energy, social cohesion, employment, civil liberties, and air and water quality. Our defences are weaker than we thought.  

Job #1 is to address the ultimate question of population.   If you want to tread lightly on the environment, you need to reduce the number of feet stomping our future into the ground.  IMHO this would be a nice and potentially sustainable 1-2 Bn planet.  Problem is: WHO (and I sure don't mean World Health Org) is going to take on the challenge?

I don't think this is going to be the disaster that we need to start people re-thinking our whole way of life.   If you look at our economies: we function mostly on the concept that Casino Capitalism must re-distribute wealth without any regard whatsoever to creating wealth and a sustainable PRODUCTIVE economy.  We SHOULD have started to correct our errors in 2008/9, but instead, we got "too big to fail" and abrogation of any control over banking/finance by government.

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14 hours ago, eyeball said:

In any case there's no way environmentalists will stand for regrowing the Before Times economy if it'll mean removing all the things that are barriers to growth, like climate action. And I guarantee you the calls to do so will be even more desperate than they are now if the rebuilding is done according to business as usual.

What are environmentalists going to do about it?  They don't control business operations or the stock markets.  They can't stop countless businesses opening again or consumers returning to their normal spending behaviour.

IMO this virus won't change anything in the economy besides everyone having some extra hand sanitizer and masks etc on hand.

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19 minutes ago, Moonlight Graham said:

What are environmentalists going to do about it?  They don't control business operations or the stock markets.  They can't stop countless businesses opening again or consumers returning to their normal spending behaviour.

Environmentalists are going to keep doing what they always do.  BTW no one's answered my question, is the economic crisis we're in now anything at all like the devastation people imagined climate activists were calling for?

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IMO this virus won't change anything in the economy besides everyone having some extra hand sanitizer and masks etc on hand.

I agree the economy will still function according to the same laws of physics it always has but the social changes this virus is bringing about will be as deep and profound as they are lasting.  It's those social changes that will transform how we use our economy and for what.

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1 hour ago, eyeball said:

Environmentalists are going to keep doing what they always do.  BTW no one's answered my question, is the economic crisis we're in now anything at all like the devastation people imagined climate activists were calling for?

Environmental change from climate change is pretty slow, and so will be the economic impact.  This virus came within months.

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I agree the economy will still function according to the same laws of physics it always has but the social changes this virus is bringing about will be as deep and profound as they are lasting.  It's those social changes that will transform how we use our economy and for what.

I don't see how.  These are virtually all temporary changes.

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34 minutes ago, Moonlight Graham said:

Environmental change from climate change is pretty slow, and so will be the economic impact.  This virus came within months.

How quickly memory fades...I seem to recall predictions about the carnage a carbon tax would cause being enough to make provinces consider separating from Canada.  It was the end of the economy vs the end of the world.  That's seems like a tiny blip compared to the carnage coronavirus action is said to be causing. 

 

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I don't see how.  These are virtually all temporary changes.

Not even a little more than a blip?

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1 hour ago, eyeball said:

How quickly memory fades...I seem to recall predictions about the carnage a carbon tax would cause being enough to make provinces consider separating from Canada.  It was the end of the economy vs the end of the world.  That's seems like a tiny blip compared to the carnage coronavirus action is said to be causing. 

I don't see what any of this has to do with my point.  Climate change won't shutter the world population indoors within a couple of months, its effects are slow and longterm.  CC will be costly, but it's unlikely to cause any worldwide panic even close to this scale.

1 hour ago, eyeball said:

Not even a little more than a blip?

Like what?

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1 hour ago, Moonlight Graham said:

I don't see what any of this has to do with my point.  Climate change won't shutter the world population indoors within a couple of months, its effects are slow and longterm.  CC will be costly, but it's unlikely to cause any worldwide panic even close to this scale.

Well that's because you completely missed or ignored the point that CC deniers claim economic action against CC will destroy our world a lot faster than climate change ever could - that taking action against CC would reduce us to hunting and gathering and living life spans that were barely 2 - 3 decades long.

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Like what?

I don't know, putting Greta Thunberg in charge of the world?  You don't think that would make this crisis look like bad quarterly report in comparison ?  

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On 3/31/2020 at 12:39 AM, eyeball said:

Green goodbye: B.C. opens Canada’s 1st natural burial ground

Likely they need it quickly, to fill it full of bodies. They might want to re-think the "natural" part a little.

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1 hour ago, OftenWrong said:

Likely they need it quickly, to fill it full of bodies. They might want to re-think the "natural" part a little.

I was thinking of starting up a burial at sea service with my boat.

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5 hours ago, bcsapper said:

I like that idea.  I'd rather be composted, or fed to wild animals, but that sounds pretty good too.

Well, what with climate change and all we're seeing a lot more sharks hereabouts. Blues, threshers, nurse sharks and we even hear about the odd great white sighting. Never saw one myself though.

I've also heard there's a good sign of dogfish showing up so could I feed you to them piece by piece?  I mean...either one way or another and another and another...shouldn't matter right?

image.thumb.png.b07cc9e2a4d924e71f7e84ae12185a53.png

We had another 25000 lbs down below too and caught them so fast we had enough bait for the next trip!

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7 hours ago, eyeball said:

I've also heard there's a good sign of dogfish showing up so could I feed you to them piece by piece?  I mean...either one way or another and another and another...shouldn't matter right?

As long as I'm already dead when you cut me up.  I was always a dog person. 

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On 3/30/2020 at 6:00 AM, bush_cheney2004 said:

Based on what happened after the Spanish Flu pandemic (1918),  I would expect more investment and doubling down on health care systems, international cooperation (WHO is woefully underfunded),

I'm not interested in funding the WHO. They have failed miserably and been shown to be largely controlled by China anyway. China has been very active in international agencies. It contributes far less than the west but has more clout with them because they bribe officials freely and they're like Muslims, everyone knows they'll overreact if you refuse what they want.

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14 hours ago, Argus said:

I'm not interested in funding the WHO. They have failed miserably and been shown to be largely controlled by China anyway. China has been very active in international agencies. It contributes far less than the west but has more clout with them because they bribe officials freely and they're like Muslims, everyone knows they'll overreact if you refuse what they want.

I hear your concerns, but we need global data and solutions for certain things.  Also, Hariri makes the excellent point that the only way we can beat this crisis is through global solidarity.  If we take the self-interested approach, this disease keeps coming back and far more people die.  This is what the narrow, selfish vision of Trump doesn’t see.  We need coordinated approaches to global problems.  Nevertheless, we need to be in control of what comes into our country.  That’s a central aspect of national defence.  

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