The Military’s Warning on Global Warming

The U.S. military, which gets called on to cope with unrest tied to global warming, is taking the climate threat seriously as opposed to civilian politicians who are pandering to special interests, says ethicist Daniel C. Maguire.

By Daniel C. Maguire

It wasn’t supposed to be this way. The really neat American idea was that the military’s zest for battle would be restrained by the measured judgment of a civilian-led government. But the spreading perception internationally is that President Trump’s generals are the last-ditch guarantors of common sense in a deranged White House.

The image of the Earth rising over the surface of the moon, a photograph taken by the first U.S. astronauts to orbit the moon.

Let’s admit it. The military can be right. Secretary of State Colin Powell, a retired general, warned President George W. Bush privately against the crazy invasion of Iraq though he later betrayed his own good sense and joined the criminal conspiracy.

What the military recognizes and the civilian government does not, is that the biggest security threat, the biggest security threat our species has faced in 10,000 years, is global warming. The military doesn’t call it a hoax. The 2014 Quadrennial Defense Review calls climate change “an accelerant of instability” and a “threat multiplier.”

In October 2015 a diverse group of experts, including three former Defense Secretaries, said that climate change is “shaping a world that is more unstable, resource-constrained, violent, and disaster-prone.”

Africa is a case in point. Andrew Holland writing in Scientific American writes: “In northern Nigeria deforestation, overgrazing and increased heat from global warming have turned what was once productive farmland and savanna into an extension of the Sahara Desert. Lake Chad has lost more than 90 percent of its original size from drought, mismanagement and waste.”

The population of already overcrowded Africa is likely to double by 2050 leading to explosive conditions already in evidence.

It is precisely from the chaos of this toxic mix that radical groups like Boko Haram have sprouted. The military knows this. The Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences USA said that climate change fueled Syria’s civil war. Deep and long droughts, influenced by climate change, drove hundreds of thousands of people from their farms into cities like Aleppo and Raqqa making fertile breeding ground for ISIS, Al Qaeda and other jihadist groups.

The New York Times reports that as pasture land has dried up in places like Kenya violent and murderous battles are being fought just to get grass for the animals. Climate change is a driving factor in all of this. It is a “threat multiplier” and the threats do not stay within the borders of the poorest most affected nations. Despair also goes global and explodes in our streets and in the streets of Europe and elsewhere.

A Primer for Denialists

President Trump calls anthropogenic global warming “a hoax,” drops out of the historic Paris climate accord and guts the Environmental Protection Agency. Maybe his generals could don their uniforms, sit Trump down and give him a little primer on this epochal threat to planetary security. Here is the primer.

President Donald Trump and First Lady Melania Trump arrive to the Murabba Palace, escorted by Saudi King Salman on May 20, 2017, in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, to attend a banquet in their honor. (Official White House Photo by Shealah Craighead)

We have had 378 months of above average temperatures. That’s no hoax. Scientists say Arctic ice is in “a death spiral.” That’s no hoax. People fish off Bangladesh in what was once a busy market before rising seas claimed it. That’s no hoax.

Temperatures rose in Iraq and Kuwait to 129 F in July 2016 and to 112 F in parts of France and Italy in August 2017. That’s no hoax.

“For every degree Celsius that temperature rises, agricultural scientists calculate, wheat yields drop 10 percent in the Earth’s hotter midriff,” as Alan Weisman reports in his tellingly entitled book Countdown. That’s no hoax.

Environmental refugees no longer come only from Island states like the Maldives and Tuvalu and from Bangladesh. They come from Houston and Florida and will be coming from inundated cities on our coasts.

On top of all that we are awakening the sleeping giant in the earth. As volcanologist Bill McGuire says changing climate triggers earthquakes, tsunamis, and volcanoes, unleashing forces that make our destructive power seem puny. And that is coming and that is no hoax. Hurricanes Harvey and Irma, energized by the heated waters of the sea, are portents of a “new normal.” The records they are breaking are not a hoax.

Climate scientist Clive Hamilton reports that “the reluctant conclusion of the most eminent climate scientist is that the world is now on a path to a very unpleasant future and it is too late to stop it.” He describes the scientists’ mood as one of “barely suppressed panic.” He says this in his book ominously entitled Requiem for a Species.

Stephen Hawking has so little hope for humanity on this planet that he says our long-term future must be in space. (One can question his idea that we should take our failures and export them into space!) The root of the problem he says is humanity’s “selfish and aggressive instinct.”

In other words, according to Hawking, it is not a scientific problem: it’s a moral problem. An ethical problem for an ethically skewed species. These expressions of near despair are not uttered as a hoax.

Any Hope Anywhere?

Fear is our greatest need: denial our most ingrained and fearsome talent. Acute fear can stoke action. We got scared of small pox and an international effort ended it. We got really scared with the shrinkage of the ozone over Antarctica and we responded internationally. In World War II, the United States transformed its entire economy and its industrial production in a matter of months. The problem is we are not afraid of an incipient apocalypse even as our TV’s blaringly report on it.

We have nothing to fear but the absence of fear. We need fear. Green fear. In a kind of homeopathic medicine, we should add green greed to the mix. Creative experiments in many countries are showing that there is money to be made by harnessing renewable natural energy.

Job one for generals is detecting danger and sounding needed alarms. Maybe the generals can be our ecological Paul Revere’s. Maybe.

Daniel C. Maguire is a Professor of Moral Theology at Marquette University, a Catholic, Jesuit institution in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. He is author of A Moral Creed for All Christians and The Horrors We Bless: Rethinking the Just-War Legacy [Fortress Press]). He can be reached at [email protected] .


61 comments for “The Military’s Warning on Global Warming

  1. The weather, whether or not
    September 18, 2017 at 08:26

    Haarp anyone? Relax those brains out there folks. Kick your shoes off and smell the room. Tax the world on slavery, we know what that’s all about…

  2. September 18, 2017 at 05:11

    So I guess we should move to Siberia and the steppes of Russia.

  3. hebgb
    September 17, 2017 at 18:23

    Parry, you GD hypocrite!
    “President Trump calls anthropogenic global warming “a hoax,””
    “We have had 378 months of above average temperatures. That’s no hoax.”
    The exact same tactics being used by the NYT are now being used by YOU, right here!
    ANTHROPOGENIC is the key word here.
    Why don’t you start showing some evidence that man has something to do with this? I’ve never seen any.
    None of what you claimed is impossible if temperatures were naturally rising.
    Even climate scientist alarmists are throwing in the towel saying that it is now too late to do anything. Less embarassing than saying we were wrong, it was natural, and there was never anything we could have done.
    I will debate anyone on this topic, in any medium.
    There is no evidence on your side of this.
    Nobody thinks climate change is a hoax, only that anthropogenic climate change is.
    Stop conflating and using rhetorical tactics when it suits you.

  4. Robert Bruce
    September 14, 2017 at 20:45

    Another lame ass excuse to butt into other people’s business/lives. Pentagon is nothing more than the muscle behind the greatest mafia on the planet, and that is international finance and their puppet leaders of the Western nations. The same International Finance, which hopes to enrich themselves over Cap and Trade type schemes, which won’t do anything to affect the planet’s temperatures, but will encourage more polluting.How the hell did global warming give rise to ISIS? the Palestinian problem? ETC? We created those problems with interfering in the first place!!!! Global Warming has nothing to do with it!!!!!!! What a disconnect from reality. CIA color coded revolutions? Nah, it was Global Warming that has caused the Ukrainian Crisis, as well as the BS emanating from North Korea. The really scary thing is that there are plenty of folks that will go along with this!!!!!

  5. R Davis
    September 14, 2017 at 07:30

    ” the biggest threat – the biggest security threat our species has faced in 10.000 years is global warming”

    Gosh !
    As of 2003 it was official that every nation is in the throws of BELOW REPLACEMENT FERTILITY.
    So –
    1. You must believe that the incredible claim – that the population of planet earth is ever increasing & will explode at
    2. That IVF is the solution to mankind’s extinction on the planet – in a few thousand year from now.
    3. That we have the technology to create test tube babies & that is how we will continue to replenish the planet with our SPECIES.
    Hooray for the optimist & their innocent slant on life.

  6. Antares
    September 14, 2017 at 01:59

    Second try after the CIA-man had failed miserably. We will eat their words or else … they will send a “Professor of Moral Theology.”

  7. Superman
    September 13, 2017 at 21:49

    ISIS is a mercenary army and any attempt to say that the weather is leaning to more extremism is insane and does a great disservice to the value of this paper. How does an organization like ISIS exists without funding and how can they stay alive without money? They can not. Who funds ISIS? Well we know from the tick-tock email that Qatar & Saudi Arabia were two guilty parties and both are members of the west. One can only speculate about the rise of ISIS and the rise of heroin use in the US but there is plenty of research that demonstrates intelligence agencies often use illegal narcotics to fund black operations not only in the US but many other nations as well. What leads to extremism is US foreign policy that creates harsh living conditions please stop with the silly non sense that weather is causing extremism. Is global warming real? Quite possibly and one must remember it is only a theory at the current time.

  8. Hank
    September 13, 2017 at 19:28

    We have been in a warming trend for about 200 years. Is it accelerating? The models failed in their predictions in that they predicted much faster and sooner rises in temperature. The Corporatocracy’s idea of trading carbon credits struck a sour chord. However, given nuclear bombs & testing, removal of vast amounts of oil from the earth, fracking, pollution of everything, Chem trails, weakened Ozone layer, and over population often encouraged by various religions who preach Against birth control, family planning, the planet is in dire need of a 180 degree turn. We need to practice more of what Jmmanuel preached. To live in harmony with creation and not be behave like we are above the creative consciousness. To stop the systems based on greed altogether. Read The Talmud of Jmmanuel for more details.

    • Zachary Smith
      September 13, 2017 at 22:26

      The models failed in their predictions in that they predicted much faster and sooner rises in temperature.

      What else could be expected? The first primitive computers were created only about 70 years ago, and I’ve been told they had the computing power of a cheap pocket calculator. By 1975 the Cray 1 “supercomputer” was down to only 5 tons and used only twenty times as much electricity as my house. The computing speed was a few percent of the antique I’m using as I type this. But in 1975 very few people took Global Warming seriously, so I doubt if any software was even attempted. Computers continued to improve by leaps and bounds, yet only by the 1990s did I start hearing about anybody really working on the problem. All the “models” had to be created, and software to test them created. Like with everything else, most of the “models” were not worth much, so new ones had to be created and tinkered-with.

      My point is that this is an entirely new venture in every way. Humans have never before had to consider doing computations concerning an overheating planet. Even today I’d imagine the computers are barely adequate considering the hundreds or thousands of variables. Toss in uncertain measurements and it’s no wonder that the “modeling” of the Earth’s climate is a work in progress.

      In the meanwhile we have the evidence of our own eyes. The earth is warming, weather patterns are changing, and almost never for the better. The oldest Hardiness Zone maps I can locate for Indiana show much colder winters. These days the Indiana winters have become what used to be expected in the mid to upper South. That’s why my trees and vegetables aren’t behaving like they did even 40 years ago.

      I’ve never heard of the “Talmud of Jmmanuel”, and cannot even imagine its relevance to our current problem. That is, unless it contains some “procedure” to change the hearts and minds of the Rich Bastards who control the destiny of the planet.

  9. Kelli
    September 13, 2017 at 18:32

    These Generals are not about salvaging a population. For, since the stolen election from Al Gore by GW Bush, we have a murderous and psychopathic Military Industrial complex, more concerned with profits for defense contractors and their answer to climate change being nuclear war and Depopulation for their NWO.
    The idea that the US military is at all invested in preserving life rather than taking it, is fantasy, given their bloated defense budget and provocations of other countries based on lies..

  10. September 13, 2017 at 11:58

    The notion that the US military is bothered about Climate Change is risible. The US military does not even measure its carbon footprint, let alone have a policy to reduce it.

    • Zachary Smith
      September 13, 2017 at 12:41

      Your statement appears to be out of date.


      • September 14, 2017 at 09:11

        Would you care to tell me what the US military’s carbon footprint is?

        • Zachary Smith
          September 16, 2017 at 11:49

          Probably the Pentagon itself couldn’t give an intelligent guess. Those uniformed boys and girls can’t/won’t do simple accounting.

          (CNN)The US Army made trillions of dollars of accounting mistakes and often did not have the receipts or invoices needed to support figures in its budget, according to a scathing Pentagon report.
          The audit, conducted by the Defense Department’s Office of Inspector General, found that the Army erroneously made $2.8 trillion in adjustments in the third quarter of 2015 to its Army general fund – one of the main accounts used to fund the service. The error amount skyrocketed to $6.5 trillion for all of last year, the report said.
          The June report, first disclosed by Reuters on Friday, found “unreliable” data was used to prepare the financial statements, leading to the possibility that the Army’s finances were “materially misstated.”

          So it would be unreasonable to expect them to even try to keep any records of carbon footprints.

          But even the fuzziest of these characters understands that buying a $2/gallon gasoline and spending $300/gallon to ship it to Afghanistan to run portable generators powering air conditioners cooling tents is stupid even by their very lax standards. Ditto for bases which are ideally situated for dirt-cheap photovoltaic electricity generation.

  11. Barb
    September 13, 2017 at 02:18

    “…changing climate triggers earthquakes, tsunamis, and volcanoes….” I don’t believe that’s accurate.

    • Zachary Smith
      September 13, 2017 at 11:02

      I agree that on the face of it the proposition is ridiculous. But it turns out that a link is possible, if not always likely.

      title: “Snow load and seasonal variation of earthquake occurrence in Japan”

      Imagine a mousetrap whose working parts have been polished and well lubricated with bacon fat. This thing is on “hair-trigger” alert, and even a tiny mouse is probably going to set it off. Transferring that to geology, a particular fault might be just about ready to break, and even something as trivial as a few inches of rain or a couple of feet of snow could cause a break and the ground moves.

      Volcanoes may be viewed in much the same way.

      “How earthquakes might trigger faraway volcanoes”


      When I first read about the “dinosaur killer” rock which hit the Earth 65 million years ago I also saw a debate about whether it was the cause of the extinctions or whether a similarly timed set of huge volcanic eruptions in Asia caused them. Even as a non-scientist, it struck me that a mile-sized impact ought to shake the Earth like a bell and trigger eruptions everywhere, especially on the other side of the globe.

      Tsunamis are just huge waves triggered by oceanic earthquakes, so there is also a connection there. Naturally these are sort of low-probability occurrences, but the Earth is a large place and billions of years is a long, long time.

      • Pluviae Aurea
        September 14, 2017 at 13:51

        I have no idea how one would measure climate variations and link them to singular events like “earthquakes, tsunamis, and volcanoes…” let alone determine if such variations were induced by anthropogenic warming or natural variation. With that said your post brings to mind some recent events in the news. The recent flooding in Texas of several trillion gallons of water was said to depress the earth by several feet due to the shear weight of the water. Also, every time the “Krazy Korean” lights off a nuke the shock waves are felt around the world and are accompanied by localized earthquakes. There’s no doubt large enough events are measurable and attributable. I don’t know how one would go about measuring and linking small events together on a sufficiently long time scale and be able to make any real conclusions. The earth as well as the universe it resides in is a very naturally violent place. I’m routing for the humans but the deck is stacked against them.

  12. Pluviae Aurea
    September 12, 2017 at 23:54

    No doubt AGW is serious and reason for concern, as is the portion of global warming which is not attributable to anthropogenic activity for which we know of no causality. Two things we know for sure is: 1) the number of people on the planet is proportional to the volume of greenhouse gas emissions and 2) the number of people on the planet is increasing at an exponential rate. Without addressing the exponential function of population, addressing the linear function of emissions will have little effect on the end result. Add in considerations for world poverty, emerging markets and related global economies and we’re faced with a seriously complex problem whose result could be total world destruction at a rate faster than destruction by AGW. I don’t have an answer and there are no simple or easy answers. The complexity of the problem is never fully expressed in the media.

    • Zachary Smith
      September 13, 2017 at 00:59

      1) the number of people on the planet is proportional to the volume of greenhouse gas emissions and 2) the number of people on the planet is increasing at an exponential rate.

      Agreed. I’d add a third item to those – that the Powers That Be on planet Earth have no desire to tackle the population problem. As for the Corporate Media, the owners are part of the Top .01%, and as expected their employees are going to focus on the topics they’re told to highlight if they want to keep their jobs.

      Ugly situation all around.

  13. James R Coyle
    September 12, 2017 at 20:27

    If the military is also taking human causality seriously my doubts are strengthened.
    See Operation Gladio.
    Then, Piers Corbyn.

    • Seer
      September 12, 2017 at 22:30

      No, it’s not so much that they care about dead people so much as what the affects on those that will struggle to survive (and look to do so by lashing out/back at the US oligarchs).

  14. Elvia M Salinas
    September 12, 2017 at 18:00

    Its being caused by solar and other space activities. And don’t forget other mysterious planetary systems coming into our solar system.

  15. Robert Blurton
    September 12, 2017 at 16:29

    Clive Hamilton is actually an Australian ethicist rather than a scientist, but he has taken on climate change as his main ethics issue. As for humanity’s 1970s ozone response, before we pat ourselves on the back too hard, it’s worth noting that it was really not that heavy of a lift. The chemical multinationals had replacement products for those culprit CFCs on the shelf and ready to go; they were just too cheap to bother changing them until pressed. So switching over to non-CFCs was really not that difficult for them and did not affect their corporate bottom line much, that’s why they eventually got behind the ban. Stopping our massive inputs of CO2 into the atmosphere will be much thornier, requiring a complete restructuring of society and a massive dropoff in profits for fossil fuel energy companies. That is why they have challanged the science (let alone any actual regulation of CO2 emmissions!) for decades. As for the public at large, their battle cry remains “Give me convenience or give me death!” Millions of people, or maybe be billions, would rather bring on the apocolypse than surrender their techno-gadgets. Look at the determined faces of your fellow citizens driving their powerful automobiles on the road next to you: they’ll be a civil war before they give up their rides. (“You can have my car when you pry my cold dead hands off the steering wheel!”)

    • Brad Owen
      September 12, 2017 at 16:43

      The battle cry; “Give me convenience or give me death” is actually the TRUTH, and so the choice is CLEAR for humanity…so the science will be done and the technology will be invented (including things judged politically incorrect), to perpetuate convenience, BECAUSE the the only other choice IS death (which the Oligarchs prefer for us 99%ers, but We The People will, as ALWAYS, choose otherwise, in our perpetual Battle with; Oligarchy, and challenges to Survival…count on it, as sure as the Sun will rise tomorrow).

      • Seer
        September 12, 2017 at 22:28

        Remember Dick Cheney saying that the American way of live isn’t negotiable? Full steam ahead…

  16. MaDarby
    September 12, 2017 at 14:32

    Keep in mind that the military is for the protection of the oligarchy and its assets. Protections against the effects of climate change will be prioritized on the criteria which best serve that purpose. Looking at it this way its is a much more doable project, preserve assets wherever possible and protect maybe twenty/thirty million people.

    • mike k
      September 12, 2017 at 15:12

      We are witnessing the process of the ultimate expression of life lived more and more from pure selfishness. Our history going forward will be shaped by the hellish results of this extreme selfishness.

      • MaDarby
        September 12, 2017 at 16:28

        It is a hallmark of psychopathology to lack empathy. Even though we view this form of mental illness a a serious condition it is celebrated in every quarter of society. No one gets hired at Goldman Sachs if they ever have a second thought for anyone else, no one gets paid unless they are willing to fudge the emission software, someone like Obama can order the death of individuals and masses of people then go home and kiss his daughters without a quiver. Those are the people who exceed to power and those are the human qualities being installed in the quantum computers and robots ruthlessness means success.

        Neuroscience has recently discovered mirror neurons which are involved in empathy, so apparently society trains and rewards people to depress the genetically produced and built in empathetic response to the suffering of others.

        • mike k
          September 13, 2017 at 16:45

          Our culture trains for psychopathy. Those who conform well to the training “succeed” in this culture, which means that they make a lot of money.

  17. September 12, 2017 at 12:20

    And yet, the US military is the single entity producing the largest quantity of greenhouse gasses. To put the brakes on the climate disaster would require ending US military invasions and occupations of foreign countries and the end of capitalism. Who’s on board for this???

  18. Lolita
    September 12, 2017 at 10:44

    This is one of the weakest article published at Consortium News. No meat and the usual alarmist fare of distorted temperature curves disconnected from their meteorological synoptic situation: militant academia at its worse.
    As for the Moral Theology Professor, he could perhaps explain how an army spending trillions on heavily polluting military doctrines and subversion aimed at confiscating Eurasian oil, gas and mineral resources while worrying about supposed 0.5 C over a century climate instability registers in his moral compass.
    To mine, this is hypocrisy.

    • hatedbyu
      September 12, 2017 at 11:49

      hey lolita,

      “ya don’t need a weatherman to know which way the wind blows”…….bob dylan

      this is the way the wind blows. matters not whether it’s true.

      what i find funny is how the military is now getting in on the game. the other big player/s. the banks.

      now where was it that the banks and the military have gotten together on things?


  19. hatedbyu
    September 12, 2017 at 10:30

    what’s so sad about this article is that it is a huge billboard announcing what’s coming soon to a theatre near you!

    or rather to a mineral rich country far from you.

    in my own journey of research over the last 15 years, i’ve come to the conclusion that all wars are started for reasons other than the given and accepted explanation. all of them.

    so this article seems to be predictive programming to soften the population to the idea that usa might be invading another country soon under the guise of climate bla bla bla.

    now that the internet has shed some light on the fake humanitarian wars in iraq1, lybia, sudan and syria, the mic is having to come up with a new strategy to get the masses on board.

    throwing babies out of incubators worked in 91″. i still have the book ,since debunked, detailing how dastardly those evil iraqis were…..

    who can forget how qaddafi gave viagra to his troops to go rape his own people after firing on them with attack helicopters?

    seeing the comments in the article on how climate change is causing hurricanes(or any site that pushes that narrative) it stands to reason that the ferocity of the climate adherents will be a perfect vehicle to give the united states military the perfect alibi to invade whenever the invading seems good…….

    i believe it was in 2004 or 2005 that i read about carbon credits for the first time. it must have been jim tucker or daniel estulin who were covering the bilderberg group meeting for the year. they had leaked info stating that the carbon credits would be introduced into the mainstream in the near future. this was in the alternative media. low and behold, in 2007 the first time i saw it mentioned in the mainstream media was when queen elizabeth and co. visited the us. there was an article that mentioned how the queen had paid her carbon bill to offset her carbon use for the flight.

    whether or not you subscribe to the agw thing or not is unimportant. the point is that this is the beginning of the new reason for war.

    my guess is that we will see other “reasons” in the near future as social network algorithms pick more winners.

    • Seer
      September 12, 2017 at 22:25

      ALL wars are about resources. First Gulf War was about tying up Saddam because a 75 year contract on oil was due to expire and he pretty much was going to totally nationalize oil: this war was all about buying time to figure out how to get rid of him; all attempts failed; enter 9/11 and the push to spread “democracy.”

  20. MaDarby
    September 12, 2017 at 07:42

    It is too late. It was too late 50 years ago when the rich and powerful decided to hide it and keep polluting and killing and causing wide spread human misery, for their own profit and narrow interests. As a general rule it takes about 30 years for information of this kind to reach the public. After 30 years, it is too late for the public do do anything about it. So, consider that the rich and powerful know about new technologies and methods which they think can and will use to protect them through the coming chaos. Quantum computers are many many times more powerful than the ones in use now – the rich have them now – how long will it be before we do – if ever.

    Elon Musk may make billions trying to send these rich to Mars as even he knows that the surface of Mars is covered in toxic chemicals extremely hostel to organic life – so – have a nice day. Not to mention the radiation in space which will give all the travelers cancer on the trip.

    The great derangement – it really seems that mankind is incapable of shifting momentum the rich have an iron grip on the world and there is not even a movement to strip them of their power – so they will just kill us all.

    We go on and on about government when our real oppresses and the forces destroying our planet are the rich families who own and control earth’s natural resources, its computing power, cyberspace and near space orbits. The Saud family is not a ally of the US the Saud family along with Cargill and others are supreme and governments do their bidding.

    As to the military, I don’t quite get it – the military kills and destroys nothing else, what will its roll be – to protect the rich just as it is now. What’s new?

    It is too late.

    It is too late – the mega rich and the most powerful people on earth simply DO NOT CARE.

    • mike k
      September 12, 2017 at 11:32

      I agree that it is too late now. The rest is hospice. Enjoy what is left while it lasts. Everything dies – species disappear. Now it’s our turn. If we had learned to love each other and all living beings, we could have stuck around for a lot longer. But we didn’t, and it is too late now to atone for all the damage we have done, and start over. It’s never too late for individuals to learn to love, but the entire species is another matter.

      You are correct that it is the rich and powerful who are leading us to our collective demise. But we did not find a way to prevent them. We bought into their game of selfishness which they called capitalism. We learned to focus on taking care of ourselves, but not so much caring for others. Again there were those who followed a different drummer, but they were unable to convert the rest. As a species we have earned our extinction. And in many ways, contrary to our self-congratulatory self estimation, the Earth and it’s marvelous life forms will be better off when we are gone. The “crown of creation” has turned out to not be such a blessing for all the other lives on our precious little oasis in the vast darkness of space.

      • mike k
        September 12, 2017 at 15:04

        I am moving towards indifference and detachment from the fate of humankind. Of course I would so much rather that we would create utopia here. But the Law of the Cosmos is what it is: Love or perish. It will be carried out whatever I might wish otherwise.

        Our tragedy was in many ways ordained by the circumstances of our coming into being. Therefore I cannot condemn us. I would rather forgive us, for we knew not what we were doing. Our unavoidable ignorance condemned us to the hubris that will destroy all of us. The challenge to live together in Love was beyond our ability to fulfill. We were tested by life beyond our ability to respond successfully. “Oh cursed spite that we were born to set it right.”

        But I will not leave here cursing God or Fate or the Universe. How it is, is just how it is. Maybe some others on some other world will succeed where we have failed, or not. In any case we can each create a modicum of love in our little sphere, if we will. And that will have to be enough. I hope I will go into that goodnight saying a blessing on all beings, and the great and mysterious process of the Universe, which I will never fully understand, but which I can nevertheless bless with my Love in spite of my ignorance – and even in some ways because of my unknowing…………….

        I believe on the basis of my direct experience that there is an Ocean of Perfect Love pervading every atom of this Universe. Perhaps each small effort of Love made by any one of us has built up this pervasive but hidden dimension of existence, and is thus our gift and our legacy to the ongoing mystery of it All. Perhaps God is really the persistent Field resulting from all the acts of Loving Kindness performed in the immense history of Creation.

  21. mike k
    September 12, 2017 at 07:28

    The corporate puppets (politicians) who are leading us merrily into climate hell are not about listening to the military or any other source that would interfere with their monetary gravy train. And the MIC for their part is not going to do zip to prevent catastrophic global heating: their trip is planning how to use that situation to improve their vast killing machine. And a large segment of the US population would rather believe an ignorant climate change denier like Donald Trump than an army of highly professional scientific climatologists. Where does that leave us? With a relative handful of folks who can see the handwriting on the wall – and it says that human extinction is coming in the near future.

  22. E. Leete
    September 11, 2017 at 22:11

    Africa and the rest of the so-called “third world” have been and are suffering a 9/11 every 4 hours right round the clock in terms of the number of casualties – and by the way can you say Africom???? – and now some guy is telling me the great lads in the military are oh so concerned for the lives there?? The great leadermen of the psychopathology that is militarism have concern for the lives here there and everywhere, now – really??? Is this article A JOKE?

    Who is the biggest polluter on the planet? USA military.
    Who uses the most oil by far? USA military.
    When did a military coup usher in responsive Democratic government? Never. Never anywhere.

    I am too seriously creeped out by this shocking, disturbingly misleading article to ever come back here!

    • Gonchalabas
      September 11, 2017 at 22:45

      I don’t think the author, or many readers here, actually think for one second that the Generals are our saviors in convincing a cabal of the political, business, and financial swamp things that lurk around d.c. these days that radical action is needed to be taken. It’s almost a dark irony or tragic reality that the biggest polluter, oil user, and wasteful neoliberal market edifier is just about the most candid governmental sector with regards to Climate Change. I think it is because it threatens their hegemonic militarist beast-mother who’s raised and nurtured them and is now clearly, as you point out, a priority tumor for removal.

    • Zachary Smith
      September 11, 2017 at 22:58

      I am too seriously creeped out by this shocking, disturbingly misleading article to ever come back here!

      Goodbye and good luck in the future. Pragmatic folks understand they have to accept reality, and in late 2017 that is an elderly, wealthy, and spoiled-rotten ignoramus who has surrounded himself with military figures. None of this is an ideal situation at all, but relatively speaking the generals represent a small measure of sanity, for they understand the reality of war while their boss doesn’t have a clue.

      During WW2 the UK and the US allied themselves with the second worst dictator in the world to defeat a menace to all three nations. Unless this had happened, Nazi Germany would have won the war. Ugly, sordid, and utterly necessary, that alliance.

    • Seer
      September 12, 2017 at 22:20

      Their concern is for their continuance. Pretty hard to continue to be an empire if you don’t have the energy to do it: That’s essentially why Nazi Germany failed (the BIG target was always Russia because without oil they, the Nazis, couldn’t fuel their armies; their mistake was thinking that they were going to Cake-Walk Russia).

  23. Paolo
    September 11, 2017 at 20:03

    «Creative experiments in many countries are showing that there is money to be made by harnessing renewable natural energy.»
    It would be interesting to read something serious about which experiments in which countries the writer refers to, excluding the massively state funded programs in north european countries which are now being halted because of enormous costs and other problems.
    Preaching is very easy, finding solutions is not. That’s why we have heaps of preachers dreaming about windmills and avoiding to talk about viable solutions. And why such preachers spend so much time trashing deniers and fomenting witch hunts.

    • Zachary Smith
      September 11, 2017 at 20:08

      Preaching is very easy, finding solutions is not. providing evidence of claims by means of titles and/or links — isn’t.

      A more accurate statement, I think.

      By the way, what are those “viable solutions” which you clearly believe ought to be talked about?

      • Paolo
        September 12, 2017 at 04:45

        Hey Mr. Know-it-all, I’m the one who is waiting for a link about your claim that «Germany reached 100 percent renewable power on Sunday» (I wonder what happend on Monday) on the previous article about global warming. What link do you want from me?

        If we are to believe the very hip neo-millenarianism, we should start talking seriously about how are we to go about producing the enormous amount of energy we need without using fossil fuel, and apparently do it in a couple of decades. Till the focus is only on the preaching, to me it means that no serious solution is available.

        I have recently read somewhere about someone speculating that if the UK will, as they have decided to do, allow only electric cars and trucks as of 2040-2050, given present day technology, they will have to build six or seven new nuclear power plants. I have no idea if this is true or not, but I note that such kind of brick and mortar thinking never seems to make it to the very hip neo-millenarianism preaching.

        • Seer
          September 12, 2017 at 22:15

          You’re correct. The BIG problem is that nowhere does ANYONE talk about scalability. Talking about scalability means we have to talk about growth, and at some point we’ll have to meet up with reality: perpetual growth on a finite planet is NOT possible.

          I know someone who drives a Leaf. He’s pushing for being off-grid. Said that he’ll have to give up his Leaf because he won’t be able to produce enough electricity (above what his household needs are) to feed it. This had to have been a huge eyeopener for this guy.

          Reduction in the extraction and refining of fossil fuels will mean a big loss of economies of scale in many things that require petroleum based products (most everything around you, for sure the device you’re using to read this!, is manufactured using fossil fuels). I’ve been to poor parts of the world; I have no illusion that all the people I have seen there can be beneficiaries of new tech; on whole we’re all becoming less wealthy, which means that there won’t likely be the seeding of the manufacturing of new tech stuff to displace all our fossil fuel consuming devices won’t take place- there’s not enough “middle income” money. The reality will be that it’ll end up taking a really bad turn, and that’s that people will, as so many do around the real world (where most people earn but a few dollars per day), look to utilize dirty fuels (cow dung, coal, wood).

    • deschutes
      September 14, 2017 at 07:43

      A quick look at the Wiki page ‘Wind power in Germany’ proves you laughably wrong-

      Quote from above linked article-

      “In Germany, hundreds of thousands of people have invested in citizens’ wind farms across the country and thousands of small and medium-sized enterprises are running successful businesses in a new sector that in 2015 employed 142,900 people and generated 12.3 percent of Germany’s electricity in 2016.[10] Wind power has gained very high social acceptance in Germany.[11]”

      Well there you have it: the Germans are harnessing renewable natural energy via windmills. They are not ‘dreamers’ as you slur them; they are doing it, and making a hefty profit doing it. The above linked article indicates very good profits from the windmills, huge growth, and they are planning to build many more. They are even exporting windmill electricity to neighboring countries. If fact, the article says that the amount of windpower electricity being generated is so high that it has outstripped the power infrastructure (SüdLink) to bring the power to market.

      But you say “Preaching is very easy, finding solutions is not. That’s why we have heaps of preachers dreaming about windmills and avoiding to talk about viable solutions.” Thanks for the laughs dude :-D

      • Paolo
        September 16, 2017 at 04:56

        I’m afraid your problem is the ”quick look at wikipedia” …

        True, a lot of people have made money and a few have made a lot of money from windmills and solar panels in Germany, because if you build a windmill that potentially produces x Kwh, the state guarantees you’ll earn x times 365 days a year. It’s the perfect investment, you know how much the return will be for the next 20 years. Every sane person with some cash to spare would make such an investment.

        Trouble is that, even without reading wikipedia, you might know that not everyday their is wind. Some days, up in the North Sea, windmills have to be turned off because there is too much wind, and the same happens when it gets too cold. Other days instead the wind is just a breeze. But even on such days the smart investors have their earnings guaranteed by the State. Add up all these and other similar subsidies to green energy and you’ll get to 20 billion euros that Germany spends each year. That is why they are ending the green subsidies, 20 billion euros a year are a lot even for Germany.

        Let me be clear: we must all be grateful to Germany for having done a lot of research on all this, but simply they have not yet found viable solutions to the one big problem: consumption of electricity is more or less constant, whereas the wind and he sun are not. On the ideal day when the windmills are at their sweet spot, the germans are producing too much energy, and they have to sell it at ridiculous prices, mostly to Scandinavia because they have a lot of hydroelectric power plants.

        And when there is no wind? You need backup power plants, and since the Germans used to produce most of their energy with atomic power plants but has decided to close them down, now they are building fossil fuel power plants for non windy days. Guess who pays. The German State, which in other words means that Germans have extremely high energy bills (if I am not wrong, somewhere between 5 to 10 times what american families pay for electricity) and a share of each euro everyone pays goes to the lucky few who had cash to spare when the green energy bonanza was in full swing.

        The whole problem is gigantic, and easy solutions are not within sight. But wikipedia fed crowds love to dream about windmills.

        • deschutes
          September 16, 2017 at 10:09

          You are hopelessly lost in your pessimism, Mr. ‘heaps of preachers dreaming about windmills’. There will always be negative naysayers such as you lurking in these forums putting down the efforts of people making alternative green energy happen–like the Germans have done in this instance with hi-tech windmills.

          Millions of business all over the world are making huge gains in implementing solar power panels; wind turbins like the Germans have; the amazing Tesla electric cars, etc. It’s exciting to see this happening. And this is all happening now, regardless of people like you who are so depressed, standing on the sidelines naysaying, unable to acknowledge the plainly evident progress that is being made. Too bad for you!

  24. Robert Golden
    September 11, 2017 at 18:26

    Conservative Congressional leaders need to quit denying GW, and start budgeting for the consequences. Between Texas and Florida taxpayers are on the hook for a Trillion +, and the hurricane season is just getting underway. The first step is to stop the wet dreams about tax cuts, and start assessing those corporations that contribute the most to GW. At the same time Congress has to come to its senses and reverse Keystone. We should not be subsidizing the Koch Bros, by risking the pollution of the drinking water 15 M Americans rely on, and sending foreign oil to foreign ports, through HOUSTON, which is already a toxic, flooded, flood plain.

    • Robert Bruce
      September 14, 2017 at 21:05

      Why? GW is just a lie that the elites are beating into your brain to justify their new scheme for making a ton of $$$$$ off of a fake noble cause. Now the Pentagon is going to use it as another excuse to land troops in Asia? South America? Keep them brown people in line under the guise of some half assed notion of good intentions? GW can’t be global when the average temps of many regions on the planet are cooler than normal.

  25. Drew Hunkins
    September 11, 2017 at 18:14

    The Washington militarists and the global reinsurance industry both fully understand that global warming is a reality. What does that tell us?

    Most of the politicians and courtesans who these two powerful sectors have under their thumbs play dumb or actually believe the idiotic platitudes they convey, but the Defense Dept and the giant reinsurers know the score.

  26. Zachary Smith
    September 11, 2017 at 17:59

    Climate scientist Clive Hamilton reports that “the reluctant conclusion of the most eminent climate scientist is that the world is now on a path to a very unpleasant future and it is too late to stop it.” He describes the scientists’ mood as one of “barely suppressed panic.”

    Is it really too late? The answer to that depends upon how you frame the question. In the “real world” we actually live in, Clive Hamilton is probably right. The rich bastards who run the world are either a huge group of psychopaths in denial, or they figure they can ride out the coming chaos. That billionaire Elon Musk has advocated setting up a colony on Mars. I’d expect anybody worth less than $100,000,000 wouldn’t have a chance at getting a ticket.

    In another world – one where the author’s “acute fear” suddenly took hold – I believe the Earth could still be saved. I’d advocate the “brute force” approach. Total cold turkey on fossil fuels as soon as gigantic solar and wind farms were finished. This could be done within a very few years. Recall how the WW2 Manhattan Project started in early 1942 and ended in late 1945.

    Once the enormous wind and solar farms had reached the point of supplying all the energy needed for humans, keep on building them. Survival at this point means not merely stabilizing the CO2 in the atmosphere, but actively removing it. In terms of energy this is going to be awfully expensive, for not only does the CO2 need to be removed from the atmosphere (probably by distilling liquid air), but it also will need to be broken down into Carbon and Oxygen. The accumulated carbon would be shaped into huge blocks, loaded aboard barges, and hauled to a safe place for ocean disposal. Say, into the deepest ocean trenches. The tonnage would be staggering, for billions of tons of coal and oil have been burned over the past few centuries. On land vast areas could be reforested, and the trees periodically harvested and turned to charcoal. Bury this at sea too, or as a soil amendment. Whatever the soil scientists would say is best. These planet-scale industrial projects would need to continue for a long, long time, for the oceans hold enormous amounts of dissolved CO2. I’ve no idea what kind of process would be needed for cleaning them.

    Humanity has dug itself into the hole we’re in, and since the prospect of charitable Space Aliens dropping by and saving us is laughable, we’ll have to dig our way out. The alternative is to continue on the present path and destroy civilization, most non-human animals, and probably the human animal too.

    • Brad Owen
      September 12, 2017 at 08:54

      Probably the most efficient and “do-able” way to dispose of carbon is to plant “carbon breathers” like crazy: a CCC program on a “Manhattan Project” scale, accompanied, of course, by a gigantic TVA-style water management program to water the new green carbon-breathers. How to get the military on board?… Make the Army Corps of Engineers our #1 military asset to manage these projects ( I think they were the managers of the original CCC/TVA projects), and give THEM the trillion$ Military budget. Also seize the Fed, Nationalize it, and make it issue credit in trillion$ packages of “Greenbacks” towards the “Green Emergency” programs ( shut down the Wall Street gambling casinos as injurious to National Security, which is actually TRUE). The water-management programs will also supply a lot of hydroelectric power.

      • Brad Owen
        September 12, 2017 at 09:02

        We’re already on this track with China’s OBOR projects. They’re already reviving Lake Chad. Also remember; we live on a water planet, and we know how to use desalination and ionization to get more fresh water from salt water, and directly from the atmosphere.

      • Seer
        September 12, 2017 at 21:42

        A big obstacle in going the planting route is that our soils are vastly depleted. This was recognized by John D. Hammaker, who, in Survival of Civilization (one can find the entire book on-line), suggested that we apply LOTS of rock dust. He did not, as far as I know, identify the energy requirements for this activity- would we be using more fossil fuels in order to chew up rocks? than the gains from those minerals would produce, or would there be a net positive to the good side (thumbs up, full steam ahead on rock dust production)?

        Hammaker believed, and so do I, that earth’s cycles are similar to that of farming. Soil nutrients/minerals are consumed as things grow and over time the top soil erodes, naturally via the rain cycle (and with human activity this increases). Glacial periods are essentially a Big Till, redistributing and crushing rock. Inter glacial periods are when the “fields” are all freshly tilled and mineralized; but, the cycle continues and the next glacial period lays in wait. Hammaker felt that the best humans could do was to forestall the timing of the next glacial period.

        Out biggest problem, as Dr. Albert Bartlett puts it, is our inability to understand the exponential function. That is, we fail to understand the consequences of growth. As long as our civilizations are based on perpetual growth we shall always be pushing faster toward that tripping point of the next glacial period. “Innovation” or “technology” can NOT solve our predicament (though it can inform us of it): refer to Jevons Paradox.

        • Brad Owen
          September 13, 2017 at 17:54

          There is no problem that cannot be solved when humanity focuses its creative/inventive/productive energy upon it. It’s a better way to spend the time than just laying down and lamenting the end (a self-fulfilling prophecy, BTW). The Sahara desert was once grassland. Add water and what lies dormant will come to life. Also, all sewage waste and every grass clipping should be pressed into service as nutrients for the project. Nuclear power will be pressed into service, as is already happening in India and China (when your population is a billion plus, you can’t afford to eff around with 2nd and 3rd rate power supply systems). I myself have seen how centipede grass grows invasively into golf course sand traps. We had to edge the traps every year or they would be completely overgrown by grass in a few years. And Life itself is based on perpetual growth, in service to maintenance and sustainability, and newer models and materials substitution is a constant, seeking, as Bucky Fuller said, more work performances using fewer ergs of energy, pounds of material, and units of time, which is the perpetual learning curve of humanity. I am anxious to see us apply all that intense energy devoted to weaponry, shifted over to Livingry (again, as Bucky said). I’m anxious to see us pursue Great Projects once again. It will happen because Life Itself demands it, commands it to happen, and all the nay-saying will not hold it off indefinitely.

    • Evangelista
      September 14, 2017 at 20:54


      You describe how Man can do “God’s Work”, rebalancing the Planet Earth environment:

      “Survival at this point means not merely stabilizing the CO2 in the atmosphere, but actively removing it…”

      –I think you will need to kill some billions of surplus human population to begin with. God’s ways for doing this, flipping the planet (letting natural imbalance [as gradually accumulated and compensated for ice-weight is removed by melting] causing the planetary rotation and wobble to throw the unbalanced weight, inducing re-distributive fracturing and released magma liquid displacements to define a new approximate balance) will effect all, without discrimination. I suspect your man-made approach will favor some over others…

      “In terms of energy this is going to be awfully expensive…”

      –It takes energy to transform matter; if you don’t allow natural forces to work you have to extract the energy from “unnatural”, meaning man-made, instead, meaning converting something to heat something to release energy from the stored energy’s storage form……

      “…not only does the CO2 need to be removed from the atmosphere… The accumulated carbon would be [need to be] shaped into huge blocks”

      –Here you are saying carbon must be made to a carbonic solid. This is what coal is. Your idea then is to make seams of coal and cut the seams to sections, “blocks”…

      “…loaded aboard barges [these could be] hauled to a safe place for ocean disposal. Say, into the deepest ocean trenches.”

      –Then load your man-made coal blocks onto barges (before sub-strata humans, who might covet your blocks for energy to heat and light their hovels can steal them) and transport your man-made energy blocks to the ocean and sink them (where the poor who covet the energy you are getting rid of instead of sharing cannot get to it. Instead we will have to sit and shiver and eat raw, instead of cooked, foods, and maybe dream of raiding your Eloy settlements to grab some of you, to cook using some of your energy we also grab, and then to eat…to feast on….

    • Robert Bruce
      September 14, 2017 at 21:00

      Right, they are saying the same scare mongering crap that Gore did in 2000 presidential debates, when he said that by 2010 the earth’s average temperature was going to rise by 11 degrees. Did that happen? Nope! Not even close, now they are saying it will increase like 8-12 degrees on average over the next decade. Problem is if the mean temperature of both polar ice caps increases by one lousy degree centigrade, the whole planet will be under water. I learned that in grade school back in 1980, well before this stuff was politicized, and science wasn’t tainted by having to scrounge around for funding. It seems someone is lying and on the take. It is funny, but this past Monday, the Detroit area’s NBC affiliate, while doing the weather segment, showed how cold the summer has been for the greater Detroit area. It is normal for the Detroit area to have at least 30 days of 90+ degree days during the summer. In 2015, there was 24 days of 90+ degree days, In 2016, only 9, and this past summer, only 4. Does that seem like a warming tend to you? We are also predicted to have a rather nasty winter as the Great Lakes are rather cool for this time of year. Why do you progressives want so bad to believe this crap? Are you really that obsessed with controlling that which you can’t? Was Harrison Ford’s character in Mosquito Coast an accurate description of you? This is getting just plain weird.

  27. mike k
    September 11, 2017 at 17:57

    I wouldn’t be in too much of a hurry to put Generals in charge of our future; they are more inclined towards war rather than peace. Quick to draw a weapon, slow to put it down. If we want peace we might follow Plato’s suggestion, and elect wise peacemakers to be our leaders. If that is not possible, where does that leave us? Right where we are now – heading off the cliff to extinction. You don’t like to hear the truth? Reality doesn’t care about your preferences.

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