Sunday, July 06, 2008

End of the Anthropocene

In which my man Rembom brings us to a discursive plateau of sorts - in the comments;
The Western consensus reality vacated even an attempt at understanding our actual ground, dating from 'round about the Nicean Creed, substituting a hollow, literal, power-based, controlling interpretation of wisdom in place of a practice geared toward a genuine relationship with truth.

You can lead a horse to water, but if the poor bastard refuses to drink, he's just gonna be one dried out dead mofo.

So then you have a hygiene problem, living with all the carcasses.
and with a little recommended reading;

Although the idea of the "Anthropocene"--an Earth epoch defined by the emergence of urban-industrial society as a geological force--has been long debated, stratigraphers have refused to acknowledge compelling evidence for its advent.

At least for the Geological Society of London, that position has now been revised. To the question "Are we now living in the Anthropocene?" the twenty-one members of the Commission unanimously answer "yes." They adduce robust evidence that the Holocene epoch-the interglacial span of unusually stable climate that has allowed the rapid evolution of agriculture and urban civilization--has ended and that the Earth has entered "a stratigraphic interval without close parallel in the last several million years." In addition to the buildup of greenhouse gases, the stratigraphers cite human landscape transformation which "now exceeds [annual] natural sediment production by an order of magnitude," the ominous acidification of the oceans, and the relentless destruction of biota.

This new age, they explain, is defined both by the heating trend (whose closest analogue may be the catastrophe known as the Paleocene Eocene Thermal Maximum, 56 million years ago) and by the radical instability expected of future environments. In somber prose, they warn that "the combination of extinctions, global species migrations and the widespread replacement of natural vegetation with agricultural monocultures is producing a distinctive contemporary biostratigraphic signal. These effects are permanent, as future evolution will take place from surviving (and frequently anthropogenically relocated) stocks." Evolution itself, in other words, has been forced into a new trajectory.
Of course the article goes way beyond this simple observation of fact. Indeed, it concludes on the horns of some of our most urgently pressing moral dilemmas and begs the literal, apocalyptic, human hygiene question....,