Capitalism is a form of Cancer

SUBHEAD: A few thoughts on why treating Global Warming has proved so difficult to get a handle on.

By Juan Wilson on 7 October 2016 for Island Breath -

Image above: Political cartoon by Justin Bilicki. From (

Sometimes as I'm going to bed I have half-formed thoughts that I play with for a while and promise myself I will remember in the morning for further possible development. The night before last I was thinking about how trapped we seem amidst perpetual growth on a finite planet and dealing with global warming, human population, resource depletion and uncontrolled industrialism, etc.

I know part of the problem is that our lifestyles and the shear numbers of human beings require too much of the Earth. But besides that we have a non-human component that has been raised to the rank of "person" but is not - namely corporations - and they are the embodiment of Capitalism and now have some human rights.

The question formulated in my mind was why this linked set of suicidal tendencies had become held together in such a self reinforcing and destructive partnership. Then something came to mind. A pair of connected relationships.

Cancer is to we Humans as Capitalism is to the Earth.

That is, each relationship is one of a self-regulating living entity with a lethal disease. An illness with the characteristic of requiring unlimited unending growth to survive. And that means using any and all of its hosts resources to continue - eventually killing the host... and itself.

Capitalism will be stopped. The question is; will we be the agents and save the Earth as we know it, or will Earth become uninhabitable for us?

The indicators are not good.

The capitalist corporations know they are destroying the Earth. For example, take Philip Morris Tobacco, they knew many decades ago that their cigarettes gave people lung cancer and killed them - but they continue to sell to their addicted customers. And just as Exxon knew decades ago that their fossil fuel products would destroy the Earth's atmosphere through CO2 emmisions -  they continued expanding their drilling operations to fracking, shale oil and offshore drilling.

Both corporations followed the capitalist's mantra of maximizing profits for the good of the shareholders - above all other responsibilities. That's the core religion of all corporations. They don't call it "a religion"... they call it "fiduciary responsibility". 

So it's gotten down a question of "Them or us?" It's late to begin saving Mother Nature.There is little time to shut down the ever expanding dirty resource extraction and pollution model the corporations are bound to. Their world view is black and white - Grow or Die! The main stream media is not going to help either.

Companies like the National Broadcasting Company (NBC) was once owned by Radio Corporation of America (RCA). The General Electric Company (GE), who builds nuclear power plants and and weapons systems owns NBC (and CNBC and MSNBC) now.

During the first "Presidential Debate" hosted by NBC's Lester Holt there was nothing significant asked of the candidates about fossil fuel CO2, shale oil pollution, global warming, sea rise for climate instability.

These crises are too damaging to the corporations to get headlines. that's because the only solution to  Capitalism is the halt of industrialization and the end to wholesale extraction of the Earth's resources.

Unfortunately for Capitalism, Nature is not a subset Capitalist civilization. It is but a lethal, subset of Nature that needs to be surgically removed.

Let is stop the Dakota Access Pipe Line as a tiny first step and move on from there to shut down corporations "as people" and capitalism as the economic model. It's not re-starting "Growth" we should play for, it's "De-growth" - contraction - that's the ticket. If we can't stop "Growth" I suggest you pray for "Collapse"!


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