Scale

Recreating (and advancing) pk’s censored domains: Macroinformation.org & Knatz.com / Teaching / Society / Survival /
@ K. 2008 08 23

Small
Temporary, Sustainable
versus Large
Permanent, Fatal

WC Fields stood against the wall at the Hollywood party, drinking his gin straight from a tumbler. A pretty blond teetotaler from the midwest had just gotten a screen test, a contract, and an invitation to the big party. She was feeling very much out of place seeing famous faces grabbing ass and puking onto the potted plants. She approached the one face she recognized who didn’t seem to be active in the orgy, saluting WC with her own water tumbler. “I see we have something in common,” she ventured. As she saw WC teetering and not quite focusing on her she sensed her mistake. “That is water you’re drinking, isn’t it?” she fumbled.
“Water?” answered WC Fields with scorn:

“Don’t you know fish fuck in that stuff?”

Of course fish fuck in the water: and piss and shit and fight and get born, and die: as we do in air. That’s our medium.

A good healthy lake, or ocean, doesn’t get “polluted” so long as it doesn’t over-populate. Jam an ocean-worth of sardines into one tiny bay and the bay will pollute pronto. If the alligators are free to eat their babies and each other, the swamp water will be clean enough. Confine them and make them behave … different story.

I freely piss in the lake while I’m wading with my rod in my hand. The lake is fine. I didn’t pollute it. I pissed in the water. So did the fish, so did the alligators. The eagle pisses over the water as it flies. But if all the eagles in the world suddenly gathered over Lake Jackson to piss, that would be a different story.

Living in nature, if you killed me, or I killed you, so what? It’s like pissing in the lake. But Darius, or Caesar, or Hitler drafting us by the tens of thousands and marching us all at Poland, or Little Rock, or Bagdad, that’s different.

God in the Bible says, “Thou shalt not kill.” He didn’t say that in nature. He didn’t exist in nature. No, such commands are only issued in civilization, where zillions of us are all drafted: to sit in a school, to take communion, to march on Poland …

The trouble with humans on the planet earth is that we had already exceeded healthy population levels by the Late Pleistocene, before the real population boomer, agriculture, had been invented!

I just jotted this “scale” concept in a little jeux on Property. I’ll develop it further and in more areas if I find leisure. [link to be added]


When we lived in small groups what the group or its individuals did didn’t much matter to the overall biosphere or to the health of the species. You murdered your neighbor, lied, tortured small animals … saw your mother-in-law naked … So what? Crazy Horse’s raids on some neighboring tribe could continue for a long time without doing much good or harm. But Washington DC and General Custer’s raids on Crazy Horse and his neighbors was a different matter: not because the ethics were different; but because the scale was so very different. Crazy Horse and his friends could only raid while their bellies were full, where their own women and children were safe at home … Custer’s raids were federally financed. When Custer failed, DC just sent more troops, more generals. People living without large-scale coercively-financed government didn’t have a chance.

Health is what we abuse: till we don’t have it any more.

Note: I’m not writing this as perfect science; it’s just English. Of course every detail may matter to the whole. Yes, a butterfly’s wing in the Amazon may “cause” a typhoon in China: but so will a jillion other little things be involved; the butterfly’s wing beat alone didn’t have any effect on China. There’s a difference between getting drunk and losing your balance in the middle of Kansas and falling down on the San Andreas Fault during a seismic event. And civilization is now wall-to-wall fault area.

Social Survival

About pk

Seems to me that some modicum of honesty is requisite to intelligence. If we look in the mirror and see not kleptocrats but Christians, we’re still in the same old trouble.
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