Category Archives: collapse capitalism

in The Free, due to climate change stopping trade, resource depletion and transition to anarchy

How Do We Get Out of This Mess?.. George Monbiot’s Proposal for a New Revolutionary Narrative

Here are my proposals for a new politics, designed for the 21st Century

By George Monbiot, adapted from his new book Out of the Wreckage: a new politics for an age of crisis, and published in the Guardian, 9th September 2017

Is it reasonable to hope for a better world? Study the cruelty and indifference of governments, the disarray of opposition parties, the apparently inexorable slide towards climate breakdown, the renewed threat of nuclear war, and the answer appears to be no. Our problems look intractable, our leaders dangerous, while voters are cowed and baffled. Despair looks like the only rational response.

But over the past two years, I have been struck by four observations. What they reveal is that political failure is, in essence, a failure of imagination. They suggest to me that it is despair, not hope, that is irrational. I believe they light a path towards a better world.

The first observation is the least original. It is the realisation that it is not strong leaders or parties that dominate politics as much as powerful political narratives. The political history of the second half of the 20th Century could be summarised as the conflict between its two great narratives: the stories told by Keynesian social democracy and neoliberalism. Image result for neoliberalism disaster

First one and then the other captured the minds of people across the political spectrum. When the social democracy story dominated, even the Conservatives and Republicans adopted key elements of the programme. When neoliberalism took its place, political parties everywhere, regardless of their colour, fell under its spell. These stories overrode everything: personality, identity and party history.

This should not surprise us. Stories are the means by which we navigate the world. They allow us to interpret its complex and contradictory signals. We all possess a narrative instinct: an innate disposition to listen for an account of who we are and where we stand.Image result for how narratives rule the world

When we encounter a complex issue and try to understand it, what we look for is not consistent and reliable facts but a consistent and comprehensible story. When we ask ourselves whether something “makes sense”, the “sense” we seek is not rationality, as scientists and philosophers perceive it, but narrative fidelity. Does what we are hearing reflect the way we expect humans and the world to behave? Does it hang together? Does it progress as stories should progress?

A string of facts, however well-attested, will not correct or dislodge a powerful story. The only response it is likely to provoke is indignation: people often angrily deny facts that clash with the narrative “truth” established in their minds. The only thing that can displace a story is a story. Those who tell the stories run the world.

I came to the second, more interesting, observation with the help of the writer and organiser George Marshall. It is this. Although the stories told by social democracy and neoliberalism are starkly opposed to each other, they have the same narrative structure. We could call it the Restoration Story. It goes like this:

Disorder afflicts the land, caused by powerful and nefarious forces working against the interests of humanity. The hero – who might be one person or a group of people – revolts against this disorder, fights the nefarious forces, overcomes them despite great odds and restores order.https://inkchromatography.files.wordpress.com/2015/01/book-poster-long2.jpg?w=437&h=643

Stories that follow this pattern can be so powerful that they sweep all before them: even our fundamental values. For example, two of the world’s best-loved and most abiding narratives – Lord of the Rings and the Narnia series – invoke values that were familiar in the Middle Ages but are generally considered repulsive today. Disorder in these stories is characterised by the usurpation of rightful kings or their rightful heirs; justice and order rely on their restoration. We find ourselves cheering the resumption of autocracy, the destruction of industry and even, in the case of Narnia, the triumph of divine right over secular power.

If these stories reflected the values most people profess – democracy, independence, industrial “progress” – the rebels would be the heroes and the hereditary rulers the villains. We overlook the conflict with our own priorities because the stories resonate so powerfully with the narrative structure for which our minds are prepared. Facts, evidence, values, beliefs: stories conquer all.

The social democratic story explains that the world fell into disorder – characterised by the Great Depression – because of the self-seeking behaviour of an unrestrained elite. The elite’s capture of both the world’s wealth and the political system resulted in the impoverishment and insecurity of working people. By uniting to defend their common interests, the world’s people could throw down the power of this elite, strip it of its ill-gotten gains and pool the resulting wealth for the good of all.

Order and security would be restored in the form of a protective, paternalistic state, investing in public projects for the public good, generating the wealth that would guarantee a prosperous future for everyone. The ordinary people of the land – the heroes of the story – would triumph over those who had oppressed them.

The neoliberal story explains that the world fell into disorder as a result of the collectivising tendencies of the over-mighty state, exemplified by the monstrosities of Stalinism and Nazism, but evident in all forms of state planning and all attempts to engineer social outcomes. Collectivism crushes freedom, individualism and opportunity. Heroic entrepreneurs, mobilising the redeeming power of the market, would fight this enforced conformity, freeing society from the enslavement of the state.

Order would be restored in the form of free markets, delivering wealth and opportunity, guaranteeing a prosperous future for everyone. The ordinary people of the land, released by the heroes of the story (the freedom-seeking entrepreneurs) would triumph over those who had oppressed them.

Then – again with Marshall’s help – I stumbled into the third observation: the narrative structure of the Restoration Story is a common element in most successful political transformations, including many religious revolutions. This led inexorably to the fourth insight: the reason why, despite its multiple and manifest failures, we appear to be stuck with neoliberalism is that we have failed to produce a new narrative with which to replace it.

You cannot take away someone’s story without giving them a new one. It is not enough to challenge an old narrative, however outdated and discredited it may be. Change happens only when you replace it with another. When we develop the right story, and learn how to tell it, it will infect the minds of people across the political spectrum.

***

But the best on offer from major political parties is a microwaved version of the remnants of Keynesian social democracy. There are several problems with this approach. The first is that this old story has lost most of its content and narrative force. What we now call Keynesianism has been reduced to two thin chapters: lowering interest rates when economies are sluggish and using counter-cyclical public spending (injecting public money into the economy when unemployment is high or recession threatens).

Other measures, such as raising taxes when an economy grows quickly, to dampen the boom-bust cycle; the fixed exchange rate system; capital controls and a self-balancing global banking system (an International Clearing Union) – all of which John Maynard Keynes saw as essential complements to these policies – have been discarded and forgotten.

This is partly because the troubles that beset the Keynesian model in the 1970s have not disappeared. While the oil embargo in 1973 was the immediate trigger for the lethal combination of high inflation and high unemployment (‘stagflation’) that Keynesian policies were almost powerless to counteract, problems with the system had been mounting for years. Falling productivity and rising cost-push inflation (wages and prices pursuing each other upwards) were already beginning to erode support for Keynesian economics. Most importantly, perhaps, the programme had buckled in response to the political demands of capital.

Strong financial regulations and controls on the movement of money began to weaken in the 1950s, as governments started to liberalise financial markets. Richard Nixon’s decision in 1971 to suspend the convertibility of dollars into gold destroyed the system of fixed exchange rates on which much of the success of Keynes’s policies depended. The capital controls used to prevent financiers and speculators from sucking money out of balanced, Keynesian economies collapsed. We cannot hope that the strategies deployed by global finance in the 20th Century will be unlearnt.

But perhaps the biggest problem residual Keynesianism confronts is that, when it does work, it collides headfirst with the environmental crisis. A programme that seeks to sustain employment through constant economic growth, driven by consumer demand, seems destined to exacerbate our greatest predicament.

Without a new, guiding story of their own, allowing them to look towards a better future rather than a better past, it was inevitable that parties which once sought to resist the power of the wealthy elite would lose their sense of direction. Political renewal depends on a new political story. Without a new story, that is positive and propositional, rather than reactive and oppositional, nothing changes. With such a story, everything changes.

The narrative we build has to be simple and intelligible. If it is to transform our politics, it should appeal to as many people as possible, crossing traditional political lines. It should resonate with deep needs and desires. It should explain the mess we are in and means by which we might escape it. And, because there is nothing to be gained from spreading falsehoods, it must be firmly grounded in reality.

This might sound like a tall order. But there is, I believe, a clear and compelling Restoration Story to be told that fits this description.

***

Over the past few years, there has been a convergence of findings in different sciences: psychology, anthropology, neuroscience and evolutionary biology. Research in all these fields points to the same conclusion: that human beings are, in the words of an article in the journal Frontiers in Psychology, “spectacularly unusual when compared to other animals”. This refers to our astonishing degree of altruism. We possess an unparalleled sensitivity to the needs of others, a unique level of concern about their welfare, and a peerless ability to create moral norms that generalise and enforce these tendencies.

‘Examples Of Anarchist Ideas In Practice’.. FREE DOWNLOAD from Anarchist Library HERE:.. https://theanarchistlibrary.org/library/peter-gelderloos-anarchy-works

We are also, among mammals, the supreme cooperators. We survived the rigours of the African savannahs, despite being weaker and slower than our predators and most of our prey, through developing a remarkable capacity for mutual aid. This urge to cooperate has been hard-wired into our brains through natural selection. Our tendencies towards altruism and cooperation are the central, crucial facts about humankind. But something has gone horribly wrong.Image result for dog eat dog neoliberalism

Our good nature has been thwarted by several forces, but perhaps the most powerful is the dominant political narrative of our times. We have been induced by politicians, economists and journalists to accept a vicious ideology of extreme competition and individualism, that pits us against each other, encourages us to fear and mistrust each other, and weakens the social bonds that make our lives worth living.

The story of our competitive, self-maximising nature has been told so often and with such persuasive power that we have accepted it as an account of who we really are. It has changed our perception of ourselves. Our perceptions, in turn, change the way we behave.

With the help of this ideology, and the neoliberal narrative used to project it, we have lost our common purpose. This leads in turn to a loss of belief in ourselves as a force for change, frustrating our potential to do what humans do best: to find common ground in confronting our predicaments, and to unite to overcome them. Our atomisation has allowed intolerant and violent forces to fill the political vacuum. We are trapped in a vicious circle of alienation and reaction. The hypersocial mammal is falling apart.

But by coming together to revive community life we, the heroes of this story, can break the vicious circle. Through invoking our capacity for togetherness and belonging, we can rediscover the central facts of our humanity: our altruism and mutual aid. By reviving community, built around the places in which we live, and by anchoring ourselves, our politics and parts of our economy in the life of this community, we can restore the best aspects of our nature.

Where there is atomisation, we will create a thriving civic life. Where there is alienation, we will forge a new sense of belonging: to neighbours, neighbourhood and society. Community projects will proliferate into a vibrant participatory culture. New social enterprises will strengthen our sense of attachment and ownership.

Where we find ourselves crushed between market and state, we will develop a new economics, that treats both people and planet with respect. We will build it around a great, neglected economic sphere: the commons. Local resources will be owned and managed by communities, ensuring that wealth is widely shared. Using common riches to fund universal benefits will supplement state provision, granting everyone security and resilience.

New evidence shows human cooperation and empathy predominate See Also: Kropotkin was Right: Cooperation beats Competition

Where we are ignored and exploited, we will revive democracy and retrieve politics from those who have captured it. New methods and rules for elections will ensure that every vote counts and financial power can never vanquish political power. Representative democracy will be reinforced by participatory democracy, that allows us to refine our political choices. Decision-making will be returned to the smallest political units that can discharge it.

The strong, embedded cultures we develop will be robust enough to accommodate social diversity of all kinds: a diversity of people, of origins, of life experiences, of ideas and ways of living. We will no longer need to fear people who differ from ourselves; we will have the strength and confidence to reject attempts to channel hatred towards them.

Through restoring community, renewing civic life and claiming our place in the world, we build a society in which our extraordinary nature – our altruism, empathy and deep connection – is released. A kinder world stimulates and normalises our kinder values. I propose a name for this story: the Politics of Belonging.

***

Some of this can begin without waiting for a change of government: one of the virtues of a politics rooted in community is that you do not need a national movement in order to begin. But other aspects of this programme depend on wider political change. This too might sound like an improbable hope – until you begin to explore some of the remarkable things that have been happening in the United States.

The Big Organising model developed by the campaign to elect Bernie Sanders as the Democratic nominee is potentially transformative. Rather than relying on big spending, big data and a big staff, it uses proliferating networks of volunteers, who train and supervise more volunteers, to carry out the tasks usually reserved for staff. While Hillary Clinton’s campaign was organising money, the Sanders campaign was organising people. By the end of the nomination process, more than 100,000 people had been recruited. Between them, they ran 100,000 events and spoke to 75 million voters.

His bid for the nomination was a giant live experiment, most of whose methods were developed on the job. Those who ran it report that by the time they stumbled across the strategy that almost won, it was too late. Had it been activated a few months earlier, the volunteer network could have abandoned all forms of targeting and contacted almost every adult in the USA. If the techniques they developed were used from the outset, they could radically alter the prospects of any campaign for a better world.

When, after reading a book by two of Sanders’s organisers, I argued in a video for the Guardian that this method could be used to transform the prospects of Jeremy Corbyn’s Labour party, I was widely mocked. But it turned out to be true. By adopting elements of the Sanders strategy, Labour, supported by Momentum, almost won an election that was widely predicted to be a Conservative landslide. And the method that propelled this shift is still in its infancy.

I believe it could become still more powerful when combined with some of the techniques identified by former Congressional staffers in the Indivisible guide to influencing Members of Congress. These people studied the methods developed by the Tea Party movement and extracted the crucial lessons. They discovered that the key is to use local meetings with representatives to press home a single demand, film and share their responses on social media, then steadily escalate the pressure.

The Tea Party honed this technique until its requests became almost impossible to resist. The same thing can be done, though without the harassment to which that movement sometimes resorted. Supported by the Big Organising model, using its proliferating phone-bank teams and doorstep canvassing, the Indivisible methods could, I believe, be used to flip political outcomes in any nation that claims to be a democracy.

But none of this will generate meaningful and lasting change unless it is used to support a new, coherent political narrative.

Those who want a kinder politics know we have, in theory at least, the numbers on our side. Most people are socially-minded, empathetic and altruistic. Most people would prefer to live in a world in which everyone is treated with respect and decency, and in which we do not squander either our own lives or the natural gifts on which we and the rest of the living world depend. But a small handful, using lies and distractions and confusion, stifle this latent desire for change.

We know that, if we can mobilise such silent majorities, there is nothing this small minority can do to stop us. But because we have failed to understand what is possible, and above all failed to replace our tired political stories with a new, compelling narrative of transformation and restoration, we have failed to realise this potential. As we rekindle our imagination, we discover our power to act. And that is the point at which we become unstoppable.

George Monbiot’s book Out Of The Wreckage: a new politics for an age of crisis, is published by Verso.

 

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Hamburg (Germany): The state takes revenge on the G20 Resistance

From Act for Freedom     By: thecollectiveImage result for POLICE VIOLENCE AGAINST G2O PROTESTS

In total, the public prosecutor launched 109 investigative procedures against “known” persons and 64 others against “persons unknown”.

From August 28, almost two months since the end of the G20, the trials began against the accused persons, all of whom are being held on remand in Hamburg.

Two trials are already over and further court appearances are expected in the coming days.Related image

1st trial (28/08/2017): 2 years and 7 months’ imprisonment for one alleged rioter.

Dutch, 21 years old, he is accused of throwing two bottles at a cop during the “Welcome to Hell” demo of July 6. The charges are “serious assault and battery of a policeman”, “violent disorder” and “rebellion”. The judge hit hard and inflicted a prison sentence of 2 years and 7 months. This sentence goes way beyond the request of the prosecutor, who had asked for one year and nine months.

The judge justified their decision with the new law aimed at strengthening the protection of agents of the State on duty *, which came into force on 30 May 2017.

Many people (families, people close to him and those in solidarity) were present in the courtroom in support of the accused. On another note, the accused chose to remain silent right through the trial, and to cover his face completely in order to avoid the scavengers of the press present in number in the court.Related image

During the deliberations, some reaction from the supporters broke the silence of the courtroom. The father of the accused let go: « they want our son to pay for what happened these four days in Hamburg ».

The height of ridicule was reached when the “wounded” riot policeman, 30-years-old from Berlin, came to testify stating that, despite the fact that the bottles had touched his leg and head, having felt a shock at the level of his helmet, he had managed to catch up with the alleged launcher and arrested him. He went on to say that, at the time of the arrest, the accused adopted a fetal position, which constitutes an act of resistance. Continue reading Hamburg (Germany): The state takes revenge on the G20 Resistance

Spinhuis ..Occupied Free Life University RESISTS in Amsterdam

Spinhuis might get evicted but these streets are still ours! Thank you so much for your support .Here are some shots from our manifestations .

Image may contain: 1 person, smiling, outdoor

 Amsterdam: Spinhuis to be evicted. We are militant and determined to resist

On the 28th of August, almost two years after the abandoned dungeon under the bridge was squatted, the Spinhuis will be evicted. The autonomous social centre will be swept away. What will come in its place will be a closed, ostensibly ‘neigbourhood initiative’ for canal homeowners, but which is widely known to be a vessel for the ambitions of Peter Hagendoorn (son of the well-known real estate speculant).
Whoever thought that we would just let this happen is wrong. Long have we fought for a social and independent Spinhuis to remain, using all the tools we had: from crowbars on doors, to negotiations with the municipality, and all the rhetorical skills and political wrangling that come with dealing with bureaucrats.

However the fate of the squat had already been decided upon. Nevertheless, we remain ready to fight. From under the bridge we will take to the streets to resist the evictions of the Spinhuis and ADM, and the overwhelming commercialisation and gentrification of our city. Here follows a reflection on the past two years and the battle that is yet to come.

During our time in the Spinhuis, so much was learned and accomplished, but we also made our mistakes. Too long have we negotiated politely: with a municipality that is selling off our city; with rich neighbours, who bluntly declare that homeless people should be excluded from our space and city centre; with slimy real estate speculants, who called the police when we opened the Spinhuis to shelter refugees from the We Are Here group. Continue reading Spinhuis ..Occupied Free Life University RESISTS in Amsterdam

Seven women killed in ‘On the Spot’ deportation by Spanish Military Police

[Migratory Genocide] Melilla: Seven women killed in a  covered up ‘hot-pursuit’ Deportation by the Guardia Civil. Woman who revealed tragedy got a death threat and is being sued by Military Police

By Kaos. (en castellano abajo)    According to the NGO Walking the Frontiers (Caminando Fronteras ) , due to the Civil Guard blockade, the Navy towed the boat in a “precarious” way to return it to Morocco and at that moment the boat overturned and the seven women died.

One of the still unnamed victims of the ‘on the spot’ deportation.

According to the Moroccan Human Rights Association, the total death toll is 14.

Seven women were killed last Thursday in a ‘hot-pursuit’deportation by the Guardia Civil when they tried to reach Melilla by boat, according to the NGO Walking in Borders ( Caminando Fronteras ). The accident happened when a boat full of 45 people, arrived at Spanish waters and the Civil Guard blocked the passage to them.  continues below…


Helena Maleno Garzón @HelenaMaleno | Siete mujeres muertas en la ‘devolución en caliente’ ejecutada por la Guardia Civil en la costa de Melilla hace dos días 13:13 – 2 set. 2017 · Melilla, Spain         332 332 respostes 7.773 7.773 retweets    2.217 likes


Helena Maleno Garzón  GETS DEATH THREATS..

Just 2 weeks before breaking the news Helena received a death threat, with the words –you are upsetting the authorities (see below in Spanish)– as part of a violent campaign against her and other Human Rights defenders. After denouncing the intimidation HERE they received written support from over 500 associations HERE!


After a short time the Moroccan Navy arrived at the place where the boat was and some people decided to jump into the water and swim to the beach so as not to be returned to their origin.

One of the still unnamed victims of the ‘on the spot’ deportation.

According to the NGO Walking the Borders, due to the blockade of the police, the Navy tied the boat in a “precarious” way to return it to Morocco and at that moment the boat overturned and the seven women died. Continue reading Seven women killed in ‘On the Spot’ deportation by Spanish Military Police

CARNIVAL AGAINST FASCISM Bristol UK, Sunday 10th September

CARNIVAL AGAINST FASCISM

Bristol, Sunday 10th September

A day of partying, resistance and PRIDE!

On the 10th September a group calling itself ‘Gays against Sharia’ is coming to Bristol to try to spread their Islamophobic and racist agenda. This is a blatant attempt by the far-right to tokenise LGBTQIA+ communities and use us for their own ends.Image result for carnival against Fascism bristol

This has been tried before in Bristol: in 2012, the EDL marched on the same day as Pride. While their PR insisted they weren’t homophobic, their violent attacks on gay men on the day told another story.[0]

Let’s not be fooled by their latest clumsy attempt to wrap fascism in a rainbow flag.

We will not be used to spread oppression that would inevitably turn straight back on us. History shows that wherever these bigots gain momentum by scapegoating one group (Muslims and migrants today, Jews in the 30s) they target us soon after.

So we are planning to stop them with a large, spectacular and fabulous carnival – dust off your heels, shine up your boots and join us!Exact details about when and where to meet will be released nearer the time via:
angryqueerantifascists.wordpress.com
facebook.com/bristolqueercaf
facebook.com/bristolantifascists
And here’s the facebook event.

Remember:

Cops and far-right thugs can be unpredictable, so to keep each other as safe as we can, it’s recommended to come with friends and stick together.

This event is queer-led but anyone who wants to stop fascism, racism and homophobia is very welcome.


So who are ‘Gays against Sharia’?

On their last outing (Manchester, June 2017) they yelled racist and homophobic abuse and attacked people. A homeless man was hospitalised while protecting a mum and young daughter from them.[1] Sikh volunteers giving away food were threatened and ‘had to scarper for our own safety’.[2]

All the key figures are far-right and most have no genuine interest in queer communities:

‘Annie Greek‘ (Ioanna Photiou): The main organiser of their Bristol demo, hilariously spotted on twitter[3] saying:
s

‘Tommy English‘ (Tommy Cook): used to be the (mostly one-man) ‘LGBT division’ of the EDL.

Jack Buckby: ex-BNP who stood as a candidate MP in Jo Cox’s area after she was murdered by the far-right.

Ann Marie Waters: so toxic that even UKIP deselected her as a candidate. Writes for Breitbart.

‘Tommy Robinson‘ (Stephen Yaxley-Lennon): former EDL leader. What a lovely guy. Not.

B+W Leaflet and poster for cheap printing.

Colour versions (nicer): Leaflet and poster

Contact: angryqueerantifascists(at)riseup(dot)net

41 Million hit by unprecedented flooding as Climate Chaos takes off

You may have heard that Harvey killed more than 30 people in South Texas, but you’d be very lucky to find out that more probably died in the Yemen flooding in Taiz on the same day, in a starving besieged city in a country blockaded, with US support,  by sea , land and air, and a worsening  cholera epidemic of over 500,000 people

Millions worldwide hit by unprecedented flooding as climate change becomes a deadly reality

by Claire James at  The Ecologist   ..  Floods in Sierra Leone. Floods in India. Floods in Yemen. Floods in Saudi. Floods in Nepal. Floods in Bangladesh. Officials now estimate 41 million people have been affected.flood-3.jpg And of course there have been floods in Houston, Texas. We knew climate change would bring more flooding, so is this what the future holds, asks CLAIRE JAMES
And although the US is a rich country, even there, for those who have least, it is hardest to get it back.

We knew this was coming. This August the rains have come with a vengeance. But we knew something like this was coming. In 2014, the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change published its summary of the expected impacts of climate change. In dry, academic language, the report sets out the evidence: climate change will bring extremes of precipitation: more droughts and more deadly floods.

Early in the morning on 14 August, heavy rains in Freetown, Sierra Leone triggered a mudslide. Muddy rubble cascaded down the hillside, destroying homes and burying people inside them. The official death toll from this tragedy has now risen to over a thousand.

At the same time, monsoon rains were causing deaths in India and Nepal. In Himachal, two buses with their passengers were swept into a gorge in a landslide. Fatalities from flooding are not uncommon in the summer monsoon season, but this time the heavy rains just kept coming, leading to extraordinary flooding in Nepal, northwestern Indian states and downstream Bangladesh, where the floods submerged over a third of the country.

A storm was brewing

By 24 August, official estimates were 41 million affected across the three nations of India, Nepal and Bangladesh and at least 900 killed. The next day the reported death toll had risen to 1200. And yet this catastrophe was barely reported in the western media. Continue reading 41 Million hit by unprecedented flooding as Climate Chaos takes off

American Ecocide: Dicamba mega toxic Herbicide escapes Control

This miracle weed killer was supposed to save farms. Instead, it’s devastating them.

   

Clay Mayes slams on the brakes of his Chevy Silverado and jumps out with the engine running, yelling at a dogwood by the side of the dirt road as if it had said something insulting.

Its leaves curl downward and in on themselves like tiny, broken umbrellas. It’s the telltale mark of inadvertent exposure to a controversial herbicide called dicamba.

Image result for Dicamba nightmare kills everything

“This is crazy. Crazy!” shouts Mayes, a farm manager, gesticulating toward the shriveled canopy off Highway 61. “I just think if this keeps going on . . .”

“Everything’ll be dead,” says Brian Smith, his passenger.

The damage here in northeast Arkansas and across the Midwest — sickly soybeans, trees and other crops — has become emblematic of a deepening crisis in American agriculture.

Farmers are locked in an arms race between ever-stronger weeds and ever-stronger weed killers.Image result for Dicamba nightmare kills everything

The dicamba system, approved for use for the first time this spring, was supposed to break the cycle and guarantee weed control in soybeans and cotton. The herbicide — used in combination with a genetically modified dicamba-resistant soybean — promises better control of unwanted plants such as pigweed, which has become resistant to common weed killers.Image result for Dicamba nightmare kills everything

The problem, farmers and weed scientists say, is that dicamba has drifted from the fields where it was sprayed, damaging millions of acres of unprotected soybeans and other crops in what some are calling a man-made disaster. Critics say that the herbicide was approved by federal officials without enough data, particularly on the critical question of whether it could drift off target.

Government officials and manufacturers Monsanto and BASF deny the charge, saying the system worked as Congress designed it. Continue reading American Ecocide: Dicamba mega toxic Herbicide escapes Control

blog of the post capitalist transition.. Read or download the novel here + latest relevant posts

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