More on Socialist energy / environment measures

Mike Ballard swillsqueal at
Thu Dec 5 14:54:39 MST 2002

--- Barry Brooks <durable at> wrote:

> While technology can't fix a system based on waste
> such as the
> consumer economy, it is much easier to fix a system
> that is capable of
> effective conservation.
> How much of our present consumption could end if we
> cut waste to a minimum?

The problem is that WE don't control much of anything.
 WE consumers just produce all that trash so that it
can be sold for someone else's profit.  We're

> The multiplier effect which makes economic stimulus
> greater than the dollars
> added by additional spending will work as a divider
> when consumption is
> reduced.  The results of serious conservation have
> been underestimated.

Just as the effects of superfluous labour have been,

> When calculating the output/input for any technology
> one must consider the
> possibility of extending the operating life.  Who
> says that wind generation
> equipment must last only twenty years?

The people who own the productive apparatus and who
sell this machinery we make?

> With conservation, without the destruction of war
> and the needs of a growing
> population the need for consumption will plummet.

Don't count on avoiding war or restricting the
conspicuous consumption of ever cheaper commodities as
long as long as we see ourselves as lone individual
consumers as opposed to the associated producers of
society's wealth.

> There is no reason to suppose that a socialist
> system will need more than a
> very small percentage of today's resources.

This much is true.  With the elimination of
superfluous labour, labour which is now employed to
protect, defend and bolster this outmoded system,
we'll be able to live a much higher standard of living
using far less in the way of natural resources.  We
should make any decision about production on the
principle of whether it will adversely impact our
primary environmental principle: to live in harmony
with the Earth.

> means that speculation about
> alternative energy needs to stop assuming that we
> need to find alternatives for
> fossil fuel.  We don't need anywhere near that much.

I disagree.  We don't need no stinking barracks
communism.  In addition, we need to find ways of
providing power which do not burn carbon.  We can do
that.  Humans are real smart.  It's our adaptive
advantage.  In fact, we have the science and
technology right now.  Once we have the means of
production, we'll have the power to change our
relation to Nature from one of domination--treating it
like another commodity, an object--to one of harmony.

Mike B)

"Man first begins to philosophize when the necessitites of life are supplied."  Aristotle

"determinatio est negatio"  Spinoza

"There are no ordinary cats."  Colette

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