Category Archives: Economical affairs

As Expected

Pressing Pause

Dana Milbank of The Washington Post is a hero. He tried Trump’s Twitter knock-off, Truth Social, so we don’t have to. His conclusion:

“Seems Trump’s social media venture is headed the way of Trump University, Trump’s Atlantic City casinos, Trump’s charities, Trump mattresses, Trump steaks, Trump clothing, Trump perfume, Trump lighting, Trump floor coverings, Trump eyewear, the Trump presidency and American democracy.”

Related.

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J.B Mackinnon’s The Day the World Stops Shopping: Book Review

A very good question is to wonder if we have to buy things or to exchange things, and what would happen if we come to a society where nobody shall have to shop.
For sure in this capitalist world there is too much individualism and greed for having personal things, no matter what it might cost to others or to nature, to have those things in personal possession.

Sabbaths or Sundays used to be days when everybody took time for themselves and/or for God, not being bounded to work or material goods. Many, in the past, considered that one day of the week as a ‘holy’ day, in which there was no place for material gain, but all the more for spiritual gain. There was that one day in the week that people stopped, relaxed, and recharged for the week ahead, and stopped consuming for the day.

But in the capitalist world, such time for oneself is considered damaging the economic world and our society, which has continued to thrive on the expenditure of money. Money has become the modern god. Most people have come to worship Mammon, the god of money, and feel bad if they become limited or restricted in their game of gaining more and more personal stuff.

People should come to understand that the way of consumerism like it has gone with a bullet train since the 1980ies has to be stopped. Demarketing, the concept of using marketing to dissuade people from consuming, or encouraging them to consume less, offers a solution that marketing could provide to the problem of climate change and overconsumption.

 

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Preceding

P5 The Empire we’re in: Individualism & Consumerism

Summer holiday time to knock and ask, and time to share

Watch out

What climate activists can learn from Sunday School leaders

Less… is still enough

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Additional reading

  1. A look at materialism
  2. Capitalism and economic policy and Christian survey (Our World) = Capitalism and economic policy and Christian survey (Some View on the World)
  3. Gang Fascism: How Capital Weaponizes the Social Ills It Creates
  4. Daily thought for July the 8th and the Summer months
  5. Today’s thought “Fools despise wisdom and instruction” (March 23)
  6. A way to prepare for the Kingdom
  7. Utopism has not ended
  8. Entering 2022 still Aiming for a society without exploitation or oppression

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Related

  1. When Will Enough Be Enough? Our Society Has a Serious Obsession with Growth.
  2. Overconsumption
  3. Overconsumption is what happens when an ecosystem can no longer sustain the use of its resources
  4. Overconsumption: uncovering the dark side of economic growth
  5. On overconsumption and Christmas shopping
  6. A Reality Check and A Challenge 
  7. The Unedited Truth About Why Americans Are So Unhappy In Life
  8. “I Don’t Want to Know”
  9. Column: Overconsumption has no place in the holidays
  10. overconsumption and the dulling of the senses
  11. The Occupiers Claim: Working for A Living is Slavery
  12. The case against consumerism: Part 1 – The real cost of our everyday purchases
  13. P5 The Empire we’re in: Individualism & Consumerism
  14. Consumerism’s Effect on Creating an Addictive Society – Pt. 3
  15. Buying more stuff won’t make you happy
  16. 11.11 sales are a symptom of the greater disease of mindless consumerism
  17. Green Consumerism: Who Cares About The Environment?
  18. “…Drop your weapons of greed and gluttony …for when you do, peace will return to society….”
  19. Sustainable Fashion: Less is More
  20. Explaining Fast Fashion
  21. The Curse of Fast Fashion
  22. Supply line panic
  23. There is no green growth
  24. Hunger Cycle
  25. From Sustainable Development to Developing Sustainability
  26. Overcoming Overconsumption
  27. Choosing a time to listen to God

Working Zillennial

What if the world stopped shopping? J. B. Mackinnon shines a light on the damaging effects of overconsumption on the planet and our health, wellbeing and happiness.


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P5 The Empire we’re in: Individualism & Consumerism

In the previous weeks, the government had made sure that the anti-vaxxers had no reason to demonstrate and/or smash things up.

12-storey floor of retail area inside of Berjaya Times Square shopping mall in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia

Mainstream churches have also opened their doors to the general public, but as before, the Corona Crisis, the huge shopping centra are and remain the main ‘worship temples’. There, in those shopping malls, people feel most at ease and satisfied that they can buy anything they want to own again.
For them, the big shopping mall is a sacred place to pay homage to their god (Mammon), money.

Consumerism has gone so far that lots of people when they buy something are even not interested in what the ecological footprint might be of what they buy.

Even though most people have become slaves to money, and therefore slaves to their employers, it is up to the Church to make those people realise how they have gone off the rails with their way of life and money-making.

It is up to the believer in the One True God to show people that there are much better ways than the worship of money, by which people are chained.

After the war in the Middle East seemed to have come to an end there was again a new war, the Russians invading Ukraine, we can see that Gog stood up and tries to go south to enlarge its world to get back a Great Russia or USSR. Others wonder who or what that “One World Government” seeking world domination might be.

Many do not want to know about God and His commandments and laugh at the idea of one world government or theocracy. The idea of living in the last days seems for many ridiculous whilst others think we can clearly see the signs indicating we are close to the times of the return of Christ, of experiencing the end of the world, there was something dramatic, inspiring, exciting about it all.

 

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Preceding

Material gain to honour God

Your position about materialistic desires having conquered the world

Looking for the consummation of presents

The Proper Place of Excess

Earth’s pandemic and T-shirts for young people

The meaning of life – Finding purpose

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Additional reading

  1. Looking at an era of international “youth culture”
  2. Looking on what is going on and not being of it
  3. Not everything has to be reciprocated with money
  4. An other trait for faith in Jesus and his God
  5. Good to make sure that you haven’t lost the things money can’t buy
  6. Hamas the modern Philistines
  7. The post-Christian world
  8. Today’s Thought “Flee these things” (May 24)
  9. Today’s Thought “Keep your life free from … ” (June 06)
  10. Today’s thought “Flee these things. Pursue …” (November 23)
  11. Mark 10 – The Nazarene’s Commentary: Mark 10:23-31 – The Difficulty of Money
  12. Not created to be on our own (Our world) = Not created to be on our own (Some View on the World)
  13. Missionary action paradigm for all endeavours of the church
  14. True riches
  15. Count your blessings
  16. Sign of the Times and the Last Days #1 The Son of man revealing
  17. Sign of the Times and the Last Days #2 Wars, natural disasters, famine and false Messiahs
  18. Last days and destruction of the flesh
  19. Hope For, But Not In, Evangelicalism

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Related

  1. P1 This might not be the End, but it sure feels like it / A.J. Hendry
  2. What Does Larry Cohen’s THE STUFF Say About How Easily We Are Manipulated and Our Weaknesses Exploited?
  3. America’s Shopping Addiction
  4. The case against consumerism: Part 1 – The real cost of our everyday purchases
  5. Extreme individualism is on the rise
  6. Individualism and Individuation
  7. Individualism in the Age of Social Media
  8. Covid Evidence: Supply Vs Demand Shock
  9. Community or Consumption: Social Ecology in Greater Manchester
  10. Consumerism’s Effect on Creating an Addictive Society – Pt. 3
  11. Time for a radical farewell to overconsumption
  12. Is sustainable consumption fundamentally an issue of inequality?
  13. The Money Problem
  14. The control of money is where the true power lies – but only because of the way we think
  15. On conspiracies, apocalyptic Christian nationalism, and how bad eschatology is ruining the world / Michael Frost
  16. Tightened Covid curbs spark protests, riots across Europe
  17. Be prepared – last-days spiritual warfare is intense
  18. Is this how the End of the World begins?
  19. What Shall Be The Sign Of Thy Coming? And Of The End Of The World?
  20. Food For Thought
  21. A Gate out of hell
  22. In the Miso Soup
  23. Quote of the day (20-Apr-2022)
  24. Make more pies
  25. Which attitude is better for our society?
  26. The importance of the individual and the individual vs the group
  27. Relationships help with resilience, not individualism
  28. 4/1/22 – Individually Individual
  29. Buying Stuff for Stuff
  30. Dang, I shopped.
  31. The Free Gift!!
  32. Green Consumerism: Who Cares About The Environment?
  33. faith in Christ for each other
  34. A Saviour for the world, the Samaritans, and our individualistic selves (Growing Deeper with John 4:27-42)
  35. Saved from what? (And For what?) [Sermon]
  36. Breaking free
  37. How to Buy Less and Buy Better with the Less But Better Method
  38. J.B Mackinnon’s The Day the World Stops Shopping: Book Review

When Lambs Are Silent

This is part 5 in a series where we will be exploring and imagining how faith communities, and our community in general, may need to evolve in order to adapt to our changing times. You can find part 1 herepart 2 here, and part 3 here.

In our last piece we discussed how our society, though regarded as secular, is very much shaped by its own God’s that demand allegiance and require our worship and sacrifice. We named these as Individualism, Consumerism and White Supremacy. In our last piece we dealt with the latter, in this article we will be talking about the former two.

Throughout the lockdown there has been calls to open various shopping centres, lament’s that we have not been free to shop, to browse and buy. And in Auckland last week, as Covid restrictions began to ease, the great Temples of this age…

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EU to snatch Kremlin’s oil and gas profits to rebuild Ukraine

Event 6 April

The European Union is planning to seize a share of Russian energy revenues from gas and oil imports to Europe to pay for the reconstruction of Ukraine. Under the plan a chunk of revenues, which have totalled €19 billion since Russia invaded Ukraine, will be diverted from Russian energy companies to an “escrow” bank account before being used for aid to Kyiv. Ursula von der Leyen, president of the European Commission, signalled the escalation in sanctions when EU ambassadors met to discuss a ban on Russian coal imports and a possible timetable for an oil embargo.

“These sanctions will not be our last sanctions. Yes, we have now banned coal. Now we have to look into oil and the revenues that Russia gets from these fossil fuels,”

she told the European parliament.

“We really have to make an effort, for example to take a share to an escrow account, so that we will really limit the source of revenues of Russia from fossil fuels. This has to end, and this is the next step we will have to take together.”

Comment

Russia relies on selling gas to pay its bills. Russia will earn nearly $321 billion from energy exports this year, an increase of more than a third from 2021. However this calculation changes completely in case of an embargo on energy sales. The invasion of Ukraine has shocked Germany and its European Union allies into a radical shift in energy policy, and the bloc is rushing to cut its dependence on Russia. The war in Ukraine is therefore driving a wedge between the East (Russia) and the West (EU). This division is what we expect to happen.

Revelation 16 makes clear that the dragon (Russia) and the beast (the EU) are separate entities when Armageddon happens. There is no mention of the dragon in Revelation 17 only the beast. This is because the dragon does not exist (is not part of the beast) when it makes war against Christ /saints.

And the ten horns which thou sawest are ten kings, which have received no kingdom as yet; but receive power as kings one hour with the beast.  These have one mind, and shall give their power and strength unto the beast [not Russia]. These shall make war with the Lamb, (Revelation 17:12)

Andy Walton

> Find the Weekly World Watch to download.

 

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As Europe Sends $300 Million per day to Russia for Oil and NatGas, TotalEnergies Looks After Customers in Tricky Decision

After the serious and unfounded accusations of “complicity in war crimes” leveled against TotalEnergies, the Company shares with its stakeholders its principles of conduct regarding its Russian related businesses in order to allow them understand how our Company is acting in a responsible manner. Considering the worsening conflict, TotalEnergies is also taking new steps.

TotalEnergies is a minority shareholder in a number of non-state-owned Russian companies: Novatek (19.4%), Yamal LNG (20%), Arctic LNG 2 (10%) and TerNefteGaz (49%). These companies are managed by their own staff with a limited number of secondees from TotalEnergies. TotalEnergies is also a 20% partner in the Kharyaga joint venture operated by Zarubezhneft. The Company did indeed contribute to the construction phase of these companies’ projects but has no activity or operational responsibility on those sites.

CarrZee Carbon

On Social Media.

This is a fascinating post from the Total CEO Patrick Pouyanne and some biting comments about how big business should / shouldn’t react to war. TotalEnergies isn’t abandoning Russia like other companies because that would hurt its customers.

Comments range from:

Sorry,Patrick Pouyanné. Time and again, you pick profits over morals as your primary responsibility to your shareholders. Shame on you for failing to rejectevil.

to

Very well stated Patrick. Thanks for your leadership especially in the face of this complex and dynamic situation……..energy just as water will always remain [a] potential weapon. Sanctions are easy to announce but often implementation comes with unintended consequences.

Here is a snip of Pouyanne’s Post

Patrick Pouyanné• Chairman and CEO at TotalEnergies — 1d • Edited •1 day ago

Responsibility requires us to seek answers to complex, sometimes dramatic,situations.

We are all deeply affected by the conflict in

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Thought For the Day: The Way To Crush the Bourgeoisie Is To Grind Them Between the Millstones of Taxation and Inflation

ALOHA PROMISES FOREVER

“The way to crush the bourgeoisie is to grind them between the millstones of taxation and inflation.” – Vladimir Ilyich Lenin (1870-1924)

Make no mistake, this is what some of the Democrats including the Biden Administration are trying to do to the United States of America.

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Sanctions are crippling the economy of ‘Fortress Russia’

March 4, 2022

A shuttered stock market, close to default, business boycotts and a rush to the cash machines: the Russia economy is on its knees just eight days into the invasion. The scale of the looming economic collapse has clearly alarmed Russia’s business elite following a tidal wave of Western sanctions with oligarchs close to Vladimir Putin breaking cover to criticise the invasion. JPMorgan warned on Friday that the country is facing a hit as great as Russia’s 1998 financial crisis, predicting an 11pc peak-to-trough GDP plunge. The Centre for Economics and Business Research expects a 14pc hit in lost output in Russia over two years.
Oil and gas is still flowing from Russia to Europe, keeping a vital revenue source for its economy and the Kremlin intact.  But shoppers and industries, including banking, shipping, aviation and retail, are already feeling the heat as the West severs economic ties and turn Russia into a pariah state.

In just over a week Russia has suffered an economic meltdown. And worse is too come. The Economist said this week that the sanctions introduced by the US / UK / EU on the 26th February are causing “financial mayhem” in Russia causing Putin to increase Russia’s nuclear alert level. With incredible foresight, Brother John Thomas wrote these words in 1848,

“Let the Russian treasury be as empty as it is said to be, and its expenditure exceed its revenue by double the alleged deficit, it will only operate as a pressure from within, causing her autocrat [Gog], to enter into countries, and to overflow and pass over, and to enrich himself with the spoil of those he is destined to subdue.”

Ezekiel wrote

And I will turn thee back, and put hooks into thy jaws, and I will bring thee forth, and all thine army, horses and horsemen, all of them clothed with all sorts of armour, even a great company with bucklers and shields, all of them handling swords (Ezekiel 38:4)

The hook in the jaws is the lure of spoil in Israel (gas/oil) required by Gog to replace lost revenues in Europe…

Andy Walton

Find the Weekly World Watch: Download Weekly World Watch

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Preceding

Looking at a “Man from the North” endangering the world

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Additional reading

  1. 2022 Political hotchpotch
  2. Ukraine Crisis Reading List
  3. Nuclear-War Risk Minimized in Rare Statement by Weapon States
  4. Putin puts Russia’s nuclear force on high alert
  5. US insight from the Independent for the first week of March 2022

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Related

  1. What is really at stake?
  2. Is A Third World War Likely?
  3. The end is here
  4. Is this how the End of the World begins?
  5. Kooks with nukes
  6. Nuclear War and unaskable questions
  7. When did national leadership become synonymous with global destruction?
  8. Prominent Russian Journalist Quits, Says She Fears ‘We’re On The Brink Of A Nuclear War’
  9. Should using nuclear weapons be a war crime?
  10. The World Failed To Take Adolf Hitler Seriously And Paid The Price, We Would Do Well To Take Putin Seriously And Get Prepared For Nuclear War
  11. War and prejudice
  12. NATO is dead as is our leadership
  13. Dallas Professor: American Concern About Ukraine ‘Inexorably Intertwined With Nuclear Weapons’
  14. “Close the sky!”
  15. The Letters of Last Resort
  16. I do not believe that nuclear war will take place: Russian Foreign Minister informed
  17. Rescuing the Future | Me and (I hope) you vs The Apocalypse
  18. Why we don’t want a nuclear conflict
  19. Is Russia Intentionally Losing Soldiers So That Putin Can Convince His Generals To Unleash The Nukes?
  20. What if the nuclear missiles were to hit in 20 minutes?
  21. Frida Berrigan: Worried about nuclear war? You can actually do something to prevent it
  22. Stop chattering about nuclear war!

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Filed under Economical affairs, Headlines - News, World affairs

Many may feel there is little reason to give thanks this Thanksgiving Holiday

For more than two years, our world is facing a period of distress, where many of us are also challenged by difficulties to do our work and to have contact with others.

Several church groups probably will have the same questions as we receive and have to give reasons for their members to continue in the faith. In many church communities, these days are normally of good cheer, lovely family time and time to thank God.

Several people now wonder if they can rejoice in God no matter their circumstances. For many, it is clear that they are not enjoying a glorious or nice time. Some have lost their job and income, and once more they are facing a new lockdown.

We may not forget it was not always a delightful time for people of God. Can you imagine it must have been when they were used as slaves in Egypt and on top of that they had to cope with several plagues. They, too, lived in a time when not so many wanted to worship the One True God.

Ramses II, like all the pharaohs, claimed to be divine. Because he did not want to let Israel go, Jehovah set the stage for a long struggle between this distrustful ruler with an outsize ego and a prophet with a new understanding of Jehovah and His Power.

The flow of the White Nile is fairly even throughout the year because of consistent equatorial rains. The Blue Nile, on the other hand, originating in the headwaters of the Ethiopian highlands at the time Moses was bargaining with Ramses, got very high and wild by excessively heavy summer rains in Ethiopia. That flow washed powdery, carmine-red soil from the slopes of the hills. Around the Lake Tana region the blood-red torrent picked up bright red algae (known as flagellates) and their bacteria. Since there were no dams at that time, the Nile flowed blood-red all the way to the Mediterranean. It probably reached the delta region in August. Thus, this rare natural event, it is held, set in motion a series of conditions that continued until the following March. Nature seemed to have lost its course, and people got bullied by plagues of the frogs, gnats and mosquitoes.

Further, there were times men of God, like Moses, David, Elijah, and Isaiah had no easy time. With ups and downs in their life, they tried to keep their faith and trusted God, praying to Him for His Help and comfort. Some, like David felt miserable at a certain time, but knew it was better to fall in the hands of God than in the hands of those who think they own the world.

“David said to Gad,

“I am in deep distress. Let me fall into the hands of the LORD, for his mercy is very great; but do not let me fall into the hands of men.”” (1Ch 21:13 NIV)

Yes it is even known that we as human beings can come in a time of inevitable distress.

“Yet man is born to trouble as surely as sparks fly upward.” (Job 5:7 NIV)

“”Man born of woman is of few days and full of trouble.” (Job 14:1 NIV)

We should know that our life will not always as easy as we would love it to be. Even those who seem to be so strong shall have to face moments of weakness and of difficulties.

“All his days his work is pain and grief; even at night his mind does not rest. This too is meaningless.” (Ec 2:23 NIV)

“If you falter in times of trouble, how small is your strength!” (Pr 24:10 NIV)

“You have shown your people desperate times; you have given us wine that makes us stagger.” (Ps 60:3 NIV)

“The cords of death entangled me, the anguish of the grave came upon me; I was overcome by trouble and sorrow.” (Ps 116:3 NIV)

Today there are lots of people who came to blame God for what is happening to this world today. Job saw likewise but refused to blame God.

“In all this, Job did not sin by charging God with wrongdoing.” (Job 1:22 NIV)

When looking at our present situations, we should think of all those people who are living under the open air, in hot but also very cold conditions, not having enough food, having babies crying of hunger and pain. How many in our world of plentiful think of those in the poor countries and of those who have to live in places where wars are already such a long time part of their life.
When they would think more about them, they would see how blessed they really are. What if we would consider this Corona plague as once again testing from God?

“2 “If only my anguish could be weighed and all my misery be placed on the scales! 3 It would surely outweigh the sand of the seas—no wonder my words have been impetuous.” (Job 6:2-3 NIV)

“For you, O God, tested us; you refined us like silver.” (Ps 66:10 NIV)

“All day long I have been plagued; I have been punished every morning.” (Ps 73:14 NIV)

Russian icon of the prophet Habakkuk

An 18th-century Russian icon of the prophet Habakkuk, member of the tribe of Levi, (Iconostasis of Transfiguration Church, Kizhi monastery, Karelia, Russia)

Those men of God complained also at certain moments, but they also found time to thank God for all the good He also had done for them. In ancient times, the professional prophet of the Temple from the 7th century bce (probably between 605–597 bce) Habakkuk at a time when there did not come the necessary blossoms on the trees, no fruit on the vines and the produce of the olive failed, he and the people were in distress because the fields yielded no food.

“17 Though the fig-tree does not bud and there are no grapes on the vines, though the olive crop fails and the fields produce no food, though there are no sheep in the pen and no cattle in the stalls, (Hab 3:17 NIV)

Even when the flock was cut off from the fold, and there was no herd in the stalls, he knew from Who all the good things came forward. Overlooking what was going on, he recognised it all was not so bad as to what others had to endure. Therefore, he was willing to rejoice in the Most High and was willing to exult in the God of his salvation.

18 yet I will rejoice in the LORD, I will be joyful in God my Saviour. (Hab 3:18 NIV)

Also in this period of a pandemia we should look up to the Elohim Hashem Jehovah, the Most Powerful God, Who is our strength and can make our feet light and swift  like the feet of a deer, so that we can tread upon the heights.

Habakuk sang and played cheerful music to the leader with stringed instruments.

19 The Sovereign LORD is my strength; he makes my feet like the feet of a deer, he enables me to go on the heights. For the director of music. On my stringed instruments.” (Hab 3:19 NIV)

Habakkuk had wrestled with his God, the Elohim Hashem Jehovah, and struggled with the realisation that this Unique and Only One God was going to use the godless Chaldeans to judge his people Judah for their rebellion. Habakkuk’s struggle was ultimately one of wrestling with God.

Today some people also have that feeling, but they should know it has no use to battle with God. One is better to battle with the world, and go in against all that keep claiming one has not to be vaccinated or one has not to protect oneself against the Coronavirus.

What we need more than anything in life today is renewed vision of God and to see things from God’s eye’s point of view. We should accept that He has given man the possibilities to battle this virus, so we should trust those scientists and be thankful that they can be instruments in the hands of God. Likewise, we should be thankful that all the medic staff can be an instrument in the hands of God. Out of respect to them and to the Divine Creator, we should protect ourselves and others, avoiding getting infected.

In the past, more than one man, prophet, king or judge, appointed by God trembled. More than once, those men of God knew for Whom to look and Whom to trust. Even when it took longer than they had hoped, they were willing to wait and to be patient. They found the power to wait on the Highest.

The prophet Isaiah knew what God had already done for His people and what He was still going to do. He also did not have it always easy, but he relied on God.

This Thanksgiving Day let us pray to our God and express our thankfulness for being with us in these difficult times.

“You have been a refuge for the poor, a refuge for the needy in his distress, a shelter from the storm and a shade from the heat. For the breath of the ruthless is like a storm driving against a wall” (Isa 25:4 NIV)

Giving thanks to God helps us do just that.

 

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Preceding

Facing our existence every day

Many opportunities given by God

Time to be strengthened, thankful and to be prepared

Are you doing Thanksgiving

Altitude begins with an attitude of gratitude

The Gift of Giving

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Additional reading

  1. What is life? (Our World) = What is life? (Some View on the World)
  2. The time of year we remember our many blessings
  3. 2016 Thanksgiving and politics (Our world) = 2016 Thanksgiving and politics (Some View on the World)
  4. Give your worries to God (Our World) = Give your worries to God (Some View on the World)
  5. Life in gratitude opens glory of God (Our world)Life in gratitude opens glory of God (Some View on the World)
  6. Beginning of a festival of lights
  7. Hanukkahgiving or Thanksgivvukah
  8. Thanksgivukkah and Advent
  9. Coming to Thanksgiving day 2020
  10. Good time to sort out your friends and contacts
  11. Left in the dark or being in the dark seeing light
  12. Making sure to be ready and to belong to the escaped ones
  13. Fragments from the Book of Job #2: chapters 12-20
  14. Fragments from the Book of Job #4: chapters 27-31
  15. Ability (part 6) Thought about the ability of God’s Provision Bringing Glory (Our World) =
  16. Ability (part 6) Thought about the ability of God’s Provision Bringing Glory
  17. The chosen ones to fear or not to fear (Our World) = The chosen ones to fear or not to fear (Some View on the world)
  18. Signs of the Last Days
  19. In Coronatime thinking about death
  20. Today’s thought “When in need of encouragement” (May 18)
  21. Today’s Thought “Leaving you an example” (June 12)
  22. Today’s thought “Rooted and built up in him” (November 14)
  23. Today’s thought “The grace of God … training us” (November 27)
  24. Today’s thought “Crying to God” (August 04)
  25. If your difficulties are longstanding, try kneeling (Our World)If your difficulties are longstanding, try kneeling (Some View on the World)
  26. God my fence, my hope for the future (Our World)God my fence, my hope for the future (Some View on the World)
  27. Prayers for Rulers
  28. Thanks for our fathers
  29. Let them thank the Lord for …
  30. Thanking God by thinking of people (Our World) = Thanking God by thinking of people
  31. Give thanks to יהוה! For He is good, For His kindness is everlasting
  32. Bring praise to the Creator
  33. Praise and give thanks to God the Most Highest
  34. Always rejoicing Praying constantly Giving thanks for everything
  35. Praise Jehovah, ​You people

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Related

  1. When does physical stress become toxic? – Eustress & Distress –
  2. What is Distress? A 11-step guide to what distress is and how it can help you manage it.
  3. Confused about which way to go?
  4. A little less… stress.
  5. If God is Real, Why Does He Allow Bad Things to Happen?
  6. The Changing Seasons and The Unchangeable God
  7. Every day
  8. King of the Valley
  9. “Have Mercy On Me, O Lord, For I Am Weak” #2368
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State capitalism and climate emergency

A continued look at {Why capitalism massively intensified the climate crisis, and why only collective action can solve it}

Continuation of

Capitalism and relevance to climate change

Capitalism and The environmental record of the communist world

In his article “Why capitalism massively intensified the climate crisis, and why only collective action can solve it” Gezwin Stanley confirms that the climate emergency couldn’t have happened without fossil fuel driven industrialisation. But there is more:

human technology plus the very human inclination towards short termism tends to result in environmental degradation. It isn’t just capitalism that caused the climate crisis. But it is clear that capitalism, or rather the different varieties of capitalism, meaning any system where the few both control and benefit from the engines of wealth creation, the very same productive forces that can damage the environment, while also being best able to use their position to shield themselves against any environmental side effects, did and will dramatically exacerbate environmental damage. And, comparing state capitalism with private capitalism, it isn’t markets or consumerism that appeared to make the difference: the West had those in abundance, but the Communist world did not, and the outcomes were similar: critical environmental crises. The implication is that mass-scale industrial technology, combined with the control of that economy by a few who are compelled to strive for growth at all costs and to disregard, even deliberately hide, all externalities, is sufficient to cause environmental collapse, even if consumerism and insufficiently democratically regulated markets really don’t help. {Why capitalism massively intensified the climate crisis, and why only collective action can solve it}

We must remember that important pressures contributing to current and future ecological collapse include habitat loss, habitat degradation, and habitat fragmentation, monocultures, overgrazing, overexploitation of ecosystems by humans, human industrial growth and overpopulation. The Soviet Union sinned against the respectful use of the earth by the practice of growing the same crop each year on a given acreage. The Soviet government found out, to its shame, that their large-scale plan of mass production or to produce huge quantities of cereals, vegetables and fruit, impoverished the country and did not produce good harvests. This because nonlegume crops usually exhaust the nitrogen in the soil, with a resulting reduction in yields. When they wanted to make the fertility level of the soil higher, they introduced fertilisers that poisoned the soil. The idea of greater flexibility in planning the system to meet year to year changes in the need for various crops, failed dramatically with food shortages and starvation as a result.

That environmental damage will be even more extreme if the masters of the economy, under private or state capitalism, are actively competing with each other whether for profit or to hit targets mandated by some dictator’s latest five year plan. {Why capitalism massively intensified the climate crisis, and why only collective action can solve it}

writes Gezwin Stanley, admitting that

 the vital experiment, of a technologically advanced society that combines political and economic democracy, hasn’t as yet really been tried, perhaps because it is so offensive to the powerful and power-hungry.

Would such a society be able to better balance environmental and economic concerns? It certainly seems likely in theory, but in practice all we have to go on are smaller scale examples, often embattled and created despite huge challenges, such as the Zapatistas in Mexico or Rojava in Kurdistan. While environmentalism is a core thread of the ideology of both these movements (see for example: “What the Zapatistas can teach us about the climate crisis” or “Rojava is trying to build a green society”), how that would play out in the long term, in more stable conditions and at scale, has still to be determined. Though social democracy may be precarious, because the super-rich often buy politicians, parties and media influence, the historically more thorough-going social democracies may offer a clue as to what would be possible environmentally if economic control was more democratic, with (again according to the World Bank figures here: https://data.worldbank.org/indicator/EN.ATM.CO2E.PC) per capita carbon dioxide emissions in 2018 for Denmark being 5.8 tonnes, for Norway 7.0 tonnes and for Sweden 3.5 tonnes, compared to the USA at 15.2 tonnes, though the Nordic countries are at a similar level of technological advancement and average prosperity and overall have a colder climate. The same figure for the Russian Federation is 11.2 tonnes per capita and for considerably poorer China 7.4 tonnes. It may also be worth contrasting how Scandinavia confronted the problem of acid rain from the 1970s with how the former Soviet Union attempted to “bury” its multiple environmental crises. {Why capitalism massively intensified the climate crisis, and why only collective action can solve it}

For him, it is no wonder that the state-capitalist communist countries of the past or the present were the cause of environmental calamities.

There have been more human generated greenhouse gas emissions since 1990 than in the rest of history (see this excerpt from “The Uninhabitable Earth”, published in 2019). Nor should we ever forget the whole corporate funded global disinformation campaign of climate change denial , and now “greenwashing”. For example, Exxon knew of climate change in 1981, but it funded climate change denial for 27 more years. None of this is surprising as the richest have an incentive to care least about climate change, because they can most easily escape its effects, from basing themselves in less affected countries, through being able to afford air conditioning, coastal defences and other protections to participating in the growing market for elite bunkers and safe havens (see “‘Billionaire bunkers’ that could shelter the superrich during an apocalypse”).

COP15 Logo.svgIf the economies of at least the most technologically advanced and richest nations had been run along lines of distributed economic power, of economic democracy as described here: https://gezwinstanley.wordpress.com/what-is-economic-justice-and-how-can-we-create-it/ , then there would most likely still have been a climate crisis. We are not angels. But without hugely powerful billionaires willing to conspire to deny climate change, and able to rig the political debate in many countries such as the USA, we would have acted a decade or two, possibly three, sooner. For example, the climate change deniers’ “Climategate” conspiracy in 2009 sabotaged the Copenhagen COP15 Conference and alone may have set back progress a decade, while none of the conspirators or those enlisted to help with the subsequent public relations have ever been brought to book. All that lost time could prove to have been crucial.

To resolve this conflict of interest we need to place everyone in control of the things they need to live and make a living. Then no one can disproportionately reap the economic benefits while disproportionately avoiding the environmental costs. That ensures everyone has an incentive to co-operate to create environmental regulations, pricing, taxes and subsidies, that avoid collective catastrophe, because no one can rig the deadly serious economic “game” of balancing economic output against environmental costs by largely reaping the economic benefits while passing most of the environmental impact onto someone else. {Why capitalism massively intensified the climate crisis, and why only collective action can solve it}

 

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