Review: The Vanishing of a Species? A Look at Modern Man’s Predicament by a Geologist (Hardcover)

5 Star, Capitalism (Good & Bad), Consciousness & Social IQ, Culture, Research, Economics, Education (General), Education (Universities), Environment (Problems), Future, History, Survival & Sustainment, Values, Ethics, Sustainable Evolution
Amazon Page
Amazon Page

5.0 out of 5 stars Posthumous Reflections of Extraordinary Value

November 30, 2009
Peter Gretener
QUOTES:

“The system has had it.”

“Environmental science–or engineering–is at best a misnomer and at worst a fraud.” This author, like the author of The Real Global Warming Disaster: Is the Obsession with “Climate Change” Turning Out to Be the Most Costly Scientific Blunder in History? anticipate ClimateGate and the International Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) being a totally dishonest organization.

Fragmentation of Knowledge
Fragmentation of Knowledge

“We need all the brainpower we can get.”

“Any human revolution must be preceded by an intellectual revitalization.”

“Education is an integrated concept. Thus a truly educated person has integrity.”

“The enemy in achieving a global solution is the fragmentation of knowledge. The interdisciplinary dialog is a step toward addressing this fragmentation.”

I am reminded of Will Durant’s Philosophy and the Social Problem: The Annotated Edition as well as Harlan Cleveland’s The Knowledge Executive and would add that our dialog must be multinational as well.

I accepted an offer of this book to review, and finally finished the book with total admiration for both the geologist who developed the many segments of the books 30+ years ago; and his son, whose restrained editing is both erudite and a labor of love. This book moved me, impressed me, and inspired me.

The other reviews are vastly better in quality–more consistent in their thoughtfulness–than one generally finds in the non-fiction world, and that is itself a testament to the core value of this work.

The author appears to have been inspired by C. P. Snow’s Rede lecture at Oxford in 1959.

My notes from this work:

+ Core problem is not climate but overpopulation

+ Huge imbalance between the sciences rampant and the humanities dormant–man as toolmaker has been an outrageous success, man as reflector an abysmal failure–the spiritual has not kept pace with the material

+ Survival of the Earth is NOT in question, only of humanity (see The Resilient Earth: Science, Global Warming and the Fate of Humanity

+ In geology time, man is a total newcomer, see page 19 that I will scan into my own site, I refuse to load images here since Amazon destroyed over 350 to get rid of 12 of Bush-Obama sharing the same face.

+ Man is a part of nature, not unique in that sense, but man’s ego is man’s death–nature has no ego

+ Population explosion within a close system (Earth) can only end with one of two outcomes: we start eating one another; or we learn to support one another (see Nonzero: The Logic of Human Destiny and Conscious Evolution: Awakening Our Social Potential)

+ Man is an animal operating on animal instincts UNTIL SUCH TIME as man achieves cultural and consciousness evolution–to deny this reality is to forego all hope of educating humanity, It is man’s ability to have expectations, to covet another’s goods, man’s basic greed, that is tearing the heart out of the Earth

+ Humanity has NOT had a “political” or social revolution equal to the agricultural and industrial revolutions–absent such a revolution, the human species is doomed to extinction

+ Politicians, clergy, academics, media have all been worthless as leaders.

+ The above, politicians and their corporate masters especially, have failed to develop human resources at the same pace as they have developed (looted) physical resources.

+ The loss of public respect for the law is a terrible indication of how ill Canada and the USA are. I think of The Cheating Culture: Why More Americans Are Doing Wrong to Get Ahead

+ The declining integrity and competence of individuals at every level is leading to a crisis. Intellectual in particular must be labeled parasites for failing to EDUCATE humanity, instead just training people. This is of course as planned by Carnegie and Rockefeller, I think of Weapons of Mass Instruction: A Schoolteacher’s Journey through the Dark World of Compulsory Schooling

+ China is the Wild Card, and Switzerland the example. Citing Swiss writer Freidrich Durfenmatt, “What concerns everyone can only be resolved by everyone.” That was the view of the Native Americans, and that is the heart of Collective Intelligence today, see for instance The Tao of Democracy: Using Co-Intelligence to Create a World That Works for All

+ Working mother is an asinine concept, failing to rear the young is a crime against humanity

+ Generation gap made worse by the failure to transmit cultural lessons learned, I am remind of Will and Ariel Durant’s The Lessons of History

+ Television destroyed the ability of publics to think

+ Inflation is actually deflation and undermines any community

+ Concept of Ecology Risk exaggerated by both sides, hence need for generalists

+ Leaving Century of Locusts and entering Century of Crunches, water and social tension especially

REVOLUTION is a GOOD word. It’s about a revolution in attitude, in human consciousness.

This book was a pleasure to read. I felt connected in time and space with a wise elder speaking from the heart and communicating wisdom of the ages.
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