(Permalink) Warning: Much of this chapter was written in 2013 and published in 2017. SEVERAL OF ITS PREDICTIONS WERE REALIZED in just four years. Let us try not to make the others true.
The disappearance of mankind is a fully scientific question, which must not be left to conspiracy nutters, and especially not to the conceited optimists paid by infantile billionaires to ruin our planet (That was written in 2013... Then...), and even soon to ruin our brains and our genomes.
(Added on August 2017) And then, well, I do not want to disappear, ok? Then I denounce not only the dangers, but also whoever creates them. In a survival issue, we are legally in self-defence. Including against governments which do not carry out their protection duty, helping instead the insane and the destroyers. So if there are some who do not like this chapter, them they just have to close the shutters of their luxury villas, thanking me for being non-violent. But the real reason, if I do not call for violence, it is not even non-violence, it is because I have far more effective methods, he he he!
For the long run, the only predictive element we have is one of the terms of he Fermi paradox: according to theories about the origin of life, life would be abundant in the universe, and we should receive visits of extraterrestrial civilizations. (The full discussion is in Part 7). But seemingly we never get any visit... Life-haters often explain this contradiction by assuming that all civilizations self-destruct, and this is precisely what we are trying to do right now. Hence the interest of verifying whether such a scenario is indeed possible, and what would happen if the present Mankind disappeared.
If we find that it is difficult to disappear, then we have to conclude that the Fermi paradox has another solution, such as a radically different evolution than a simple extrapolation of the current trends. We shall see more precisely in chapter VI-16 the future of Mankind, and in chapter VIII-9 the solutions to the Fermi paradox.
This chapter, therefore, is a review of the mines that we placed under our own feet. With the solutions, often ridiculously simple.
The danger usually considered the most serious, the «reference», is the nuclear holocaust. If I do not put it first, it is not to mean that it would be less serious, or less likely, it is simply because other dangers are even more terrifying.
(Permalink) If we consider the available resources, the population of Earth should never exceed roughly three billions, for everyone to live a comfortable modern life without threatening others or nature. And still, three billion if everybody is vegetarian. In a world of meat and mass consumption, one billion is the maximum, or even half a billion. Overpopulation is of all the ongoing disasters, the one which went the furthest. It results in enormous pressure on virgin nature, on farmland, on food resources, trace element resources, minerals, and an exponentially increasing pollution. Experts all agree that the current regime is unsustainable: the depletion of these resources in the coming decades will have tragic consequences.
Malthus, the first to become aware of these problems, said that «one day we shall need to pass the plough between the tombs of the deads, to feed the living». Two centuries of ostrich policy later, he might say: «None of the children born today will die of old age.»
Malthus was in the 18th century the first to realize the limits imposed by natural resources on an increase in the human population, and to advocate the limitation of births. Of all the philosophers, it was probably the one who was the most unanimously negated and bullied (right/left extremists, Marxist/capitalist ideologues, technocrat/naturocrats, atheists/religious fundamentalists, wikipedia, porn/prudish morons, etc.). Indeed, by touching the offspring, we touch the most despicable egotic desire: to «continue» itself with the children. Yet the current catastrophic overpopulation, with its consequences (famines, pollution, climate change, devastation of life on our planet) implacably shows the accuracy of Malthus's views. And it could show it to the end, bringing what he called «positive checks», that is blind and brutal reactions of the ecology of our planet, in order to lower the world population by force (society collapse, industry collapse, famine, climatic flip, epidemic affecting people, epidemic affecting crops, etc.)
This opposition to Malthus is all the more absurd, suicidal, crazy and criminal that we nowadays have much more acceptable methods (contraception, chapter VI-5) than in his time (chastity, celibacy).
-Make condoms which do not tear after three minutes.
-Denounce false contraceptives (chapter VI-5), make known the effective ones, search for better ones, including male contraceptives.
-Criminalize all the natalist ideologies and propaganda, anti-contraception, etc.
-Develop virtual sex with force return.
Religions often wield a «duty» to procreate without restrain. In fact, the analysis of religious texts does not show any OBLIGATION, but a WISH to grow and multiply, in a time where life was difficult, and the survival of a tribe was uncertain. Today, due to the extreme danger of overpopulation, the injunction has been totally reversed: to fight against overpopulation and other dangers. What good is it to make so many children today, if it is so see all them die before the normal term?
Not the slightest vice of overpopulation is that, even if we take the necessary radical measures today, then we get a generation of seniors that no one could care for. Having created such a situation is certainly a crime against humanity, a reasoning from monsters.
(Permalink) This problem is the occasion of copious whimper advertising in the media, which nevertheless never speak of the simple solution. Let us be careful, then.
In fact, hunger in the world has a well-defined cause, but the huge majority avoid to mention it, from hypocrisy or cowardice in the face of the real solutions.
More often, one invoke «causes» such as wars, climatic problems, catastrophes, etc. However, these are not the real causes, but simply clues of an abnormal situation: if there is a chronic shortage of food, this lack will necessarily be felt in times of catastrophe, while times of relative abundance will lure us in a feeling of false security, as in the Sahel. In fact, a population in a healthy situation does not suffer from these recurrent famines: for example, Europe experienced few famines in the 19th and 20th centuries, despite the terrible wars which disorganized entire countries. Then what is this deeper cause, which in some countries kills thousands or millions at the slightest climatic yaw, or cyclically with droughts?
Imagine, for example, a country where agricultural resources can feed properly a million people. If this one million make too many children, the population will increase, and then there will not be enough food left. From the automatic appearance of poor people in an egocentric economy (Chapter VI-8), we shall have, for example, five hundred thousand well-fed, and seven hundred thousand malnourished. At this point, the population can still increase, but then the proportion of malnourished will increase, until some are so malnourished that they die of hunger. When the starvation deaths compensate for excess births, the population is then stable, for example at two million, with a rich class and a poor class where the poorest people die of hunger, often in infancy. If the country is a little more civilized, the most disadvantaged do not die of hunger, but they cannot marry or have children, which also leads to a stabilization of the population, as in Japan. The suffering is then emotional instead of physical. But it can be worse.
In practice, the natural variations of climate (Sahel) or political instability (wars, austerity policies) will lead to famines between periods of remission, giving the feeling that it is these events which cause hunger and mortality. But the ultimate cause is always overpopulation, which draws too much on the ecology: then the society cannot face the common random variations, and periods of scarcity appear.
This is precisely the picture that Malthus described: when population increases beyond what ecology can bear, then wars, disasters, etc. are «positive checks»: ecological reactions, forcing the population to return to bearable limits.
No one can pretend to ignore Malthus (and especially not the ones who criticize him). We can therefore assume that every demographer and every economist knows the cause of hunger in the world, and especially that he knows the solution: the regulation of births. Hence the criminal hypocrisy of those who pretend to cry, while refusing the regulation of births, contraception, prohibition of rape, etc. These people then appear for what they are: crazy criminals, sadistic sickos WANTING people to starve and suffer.
But this is not the worst. Suppose now that our imaginary country receives food aid, or agricultural progress, which doubles its resources, and thus allows it to feed properly its two million inhabitants: the million that the ecology supports, plus the million in excess. In the short term, we get the desired result: everybody is well fed. But in the medium term, the increase in population will bring back to the previous case in a few decades, by a simple doubling of all the figures, ie four millions. Then the number of hungry people will have doubled.
And together with it the pollution, work, and so on.
It is, I admit, a paradox as surprising as revolting: offered without birth control, food aid and agricultural progress increase malnutrition.
Hence the need for a minimum of intelligence, before tinkering with these things. Or to give as dangerous as irresponsible advices.
I would even say that it is quite obvious, for any economist who makes the most elementary of appraisals. Especially with modern agriculture: the simple fact of increasing the yield of the fields, even of five per cent, should go to reducing the labour needed to feed a stable population. But if this population increases, then we find ourselves with a corresponding increase of the hungry!
The whole affair thus strongly resembles a pyramid scheme: the increase of the population, instead of supplying more workforce for agriculture, actually produces more mouths to feed, on fields which remain the same. Until ecology goes bankrupt. Then children die of hunger on the roads, and hypocrites pretend to weep in the media, their lips still full of gourmet sauce from their luxury restaurants.
And no one can pretend to ignore such a simple mechanism.
I would not go as far as saying that some people ignore it on purpose, but...
...They have been told the solution for two hundred years now, and they do not hear it.
The solution is also very obvious: to bring the regulation of the population at the same time as food or agriculture. Family planning, female AND male contraception, rape suppression, school, psychoeducation, etc. At a pinch, this would be enough in most cases. This is what experience seems to show, in any case, even in a very religious and traditionalist country such as Pakistan.
I would also say that it is frankly hypocritical, and even criminal, to pretend to fight hunger in the world, if at the same time we maintain an excessive birth rate, whether for traditional reasons (prejudice), egocentric reasons (to «continue oneself»), «religious» motives (arbitrary dogmas), political motives (nationalism) or ideological motives (marxism, capitalism). Before giving anything to charitable organizations, even well known ones, ask them which family planning or contraception they bring with their aid. Do not give a grain of rice to anyone who is not perfectly clear with these questions, because in doing so you would go straight against the stated purpose (and after reading this page, you would engage your moral and criminal responsibility ).
And do not even listen to anyone who begins his speech by «the population of the world WILL increase»: he WANTS it to increase. But with HIS descendants. Not yours.
In addition, countries receiving food aid becomes dependent and assisted. More subtly, agricultural progress can also lead to dependence, through the purchase of machinery, seeds, GMO, pesticides, etc. which they did not needed before. We have to understand this right: to buy a tractor, it is good. But this means building roads, importing oil, training mechanics, and so on. Thus destroying the relationship with nature. And we have to pay for all these things, which enforces adhesion to capitalism, ruining traditional economies based on utility. For instance, GMO merchants see hunger in the world as an argument for developing and selling their products. Products often ineffective anyway.
If, on the contrary, we maintain a safety margin, keeping the population well enough below the maximum capacity of the land, then not only we are protected from hunger, even in the event of climatic odds, but in addition we relieve the pressure on ecology. Which brings us to the following point:
-Stop voting for politicians who are not clear on these issues
-Improving and spreading family planning and contraception (Chapter VI-5)
-Stopping all donations to irresponsible «charitable» organizations which claim to fight hunger in the world, without proposing family planning or birth control (or even who oppose them)
-Offering school to all, especially girls
-(Added March 2021) STOP MEAT, which, in more of wasting more than half the farm production, is one of the main causes of greenhouse effect, new diseases, (AIDS, SARS, Covid, etc.) and cardiovasculary diseases. Without saying that it is disgusting.
(Added in March 2023) Another problem that cannot be ignored (and that I still hear about for the first time with this article from Phys.org) is that in Africa, more than half of the seeds are counterfeit, reducing harvests up to 80%. And after we hear criticizing the «African mentality»...
(Permalink) Humanity could survive in a concrete hell, in the style of the Coruscant planet in Star Wars, entirely urbanized. However, we would not be happy in such a world: happiness is possible only with a relationship with virgin nature. The devastation of the last virgin areas, the increasingly pervasive noise (latest finding: the drones), the progressive poisoning of wild life by pesticides, the slobbery rage of shaving grasses and flowers, the concreting and tarring of all inhabited places threaten our relationship with Nature, and ultimately the very meaning of our existence. What is the point of spending working days and learning to live in a complex and demanding world, if we can no longer be happy? What good is it to travel, if it is everywhere the same concrete?
The elimination of nature will not eliminate humanity, but it will make of it a race of insensitive zombies. In my opinion serious things will happen long before.
The pessimists like it or not, if we apparently not received any visit from good extraterrestrials, we also never received a visit of bad ones! If this was the case, they would not hesitate to devastate our planet as we do, leaving very visible traces in the geological archives: radioactive layers, exhausted mines, and so on. Fermi's paradox is basically reassuring: if it does not tell us about the possibility of good extraterrestrials respectful of our planet, it brings at least one definite result: in five billion years, no evil extraterrestrials could arrive at the stage of space travel.
-Stop voting for irresponsible or masochistic politicians.
-Preferring fair trade or responsible trade.
-Respect nature when we are in, especially silence.
-Feed the birds in winter.
-Take a hammer and demolish the lawnmower (how do you want the butterflies to come, if you shave the flowers!). Grass is scythed only once a year, when summer made it yellow. And for this we use a scythe, which is a fantastic technical progress: silent, without pollution, efficient, and in more makes lose fat!!
(Permalink) The problem is now well known, and the manipulators who try to hide it have been denounced with sufficient precision so that today «not knowing» can be considered a crime. Exactly like for the ones who «did not knew», for the Shoah.
The consequences of global warming are not benign:
-Some countries would become too hot to live in
-Radical shrinking of farm lands (In 2013, there already are 1 million climatic refugees per year) (Some countries, such as Russia, would benefit in the Arctic zones, but would lose more on the temperate zones)
-Extension of tropical diseases to temperate zones (ongoing: arrival of dengue and its mosquito vector in France)
If we continue the mortifications, the rise of temperature can increase exponentially, by the release of methane hidden under the polar ice. Perhaps it is already too late: such a runaway cannot be stopped once started.
Not only does global warming exist, but there is a terrifying precedent: during the Permian-Triassic transition 251 million years ago, a 5°C rise in temperature would have caused the melting of methane ice at the bottom of the oceans. This methane would have brought the total temperature to 10°C more than today! This was the greatest extinction of life forms that Earth has known, with 90% of the marine species and many lines extinct forever. If such a thing were to happen today, only a few polar regions would remain habitable, while melting ice would cause oceans to rise to 60 meters, drowning most agricultural land, cities, nuclear power plants and industrial areas. Certainly mankind could survive, but reduced to a few million, with most likely the loss of democracy, science, technology (communications), loss of education and spiritual methods of mastering our minds. A terrible picture, which science fiction novels have abundantly described (although with gross inaccuracies)
So, the Earth is like a sadomasochist mistress, ready to respond to all one's masochistic desires, even beyond everything we expect... but it is not sure that we appreciate it, once we shall be there.
- Stop voting for irresponsible or masochistic politicians lost in their own world of ultra-rich (This was written in 2013. Too bad I only published it in 2017 because it was... very prophetic, lol).
-Stop listening to manipulative media (same remark).
-Ignore the corporatist trade unions (employers AND workers).
-For those who want to start working, the technical solutions are already known, or in the course of development (chapter VI-7): cellulose ethanol (E85 gasoline) and other bio-fuels, thermochemistry (making petroleum from the sun), aerothermal plants, solar plants in deserts or oceans, etc. etc.
-Move all the investment from fossil fuels to renewable energies.
The most idiotic with the energy transition, is that, if we had started when it became necessary, about in 1985-90, then it would be finished now, without added cost, simply by the normal renewal of the energy production units.
(Permalink) A nuclear holocaust (a ritual human sacrifice organized by several governments which convene to send bombs on each other's cities) would certainly kill many people, but not enough to really eliminate Humanity: there would always be survivors in some wild places.
The real risk is not the explosions, but the radioactivity. And here I am sorry, but it is already too late: the «accidents» of Chernobyl or Fukujima, plus the «cold» war, have already sent in nature the equivalent of a nuclear war. So the nuclear holocaust has already taken place, and we are already living in caesium and plutonium, with no hope of eliminating them before tens of thousands of years. Other «accidents» can still happen, and a mere drop in democracy could lead to spreading the contents of power stations or waste repositories, multiplying by thousands the levels of natural radioactivity. It is not a view of the mind: the volume of nuclear madness already reached far exceeds the nazi holocaust, for example when the Soviet government deliberately sacrificed the offspring of a whole generation of young soldiers for the Construction of the first Chernobyl sarcophagus, instead of using elderly people for this work.
And the results are already there: the images of Chernobyl or Mayak's children are unsustainable, both by the horror of the malformations and by their number. The children of Fukushima are expected, and perhaps soon of Fessenheim... (French nuclear power plant running beyond its design life span, which considerably increases the probability of an accident, and statistically points at it as the most probable next accident. This was written in 2013, and in 2017 we are still «discussing».
However, the increase in leukemia, cancers or birth defects is not the worst problem: as long as humanity can reproduce, it will not disappear. The worst problem is the similar increase in the number of genetically transmissible diseases, which could accumulate to the point of rendering reproduction impossible. Since most genetic diseases are recessive, it will take centuries for the problem to manifest. But humanity is perhaps already doomed today.
-Stop voting for irresponsible or masochistic politicians.
-For what is already done, leaving the waste in the power plants is infinitely less polluting than to «dismantle» them (clean up one place to pollute another).
In the longer term, we shall have no choice but to systematically practice eugenics, with all the associated risks. Sorry, it was not me who decided, but the blokes who built nuclear plants, zombie technocrats or zany voters. Marie Curie, who discovered the radioactivity, had also shown her hands covered with radiodermatitis: nobody can pretend to ignore that nuclear is dangerous.
-Or well develop an Humanity of the Elf kind (chapter VI-16)... but this is not for Muggles.
(Permalink) The risks of a devastating natural epidemic, such as the plague (25% of the European population in the 14th Century) or the Spanish flu (50 millions killed in 1918), are far from eliminated. But today is added the risk of an artificial epidemic. Indeed, today many laboratory tools allow to synthesize viruses, or to modify existing viruses to add useful or dangerous genes. Countries, totalitarian regimes, armies, companies, even billionaires or sects, have these tools. We do not even know their complete list! The question then is not whether terrorists or a simple nutter can release dangerous germs in nature, but when this will happen.
I prefer not to give ideas to these people, and therefore I do not publish data on what can be done (specialists know). I would simply say that the epidemics which «work» today are the ones which spread through some common hygiene breaches: coughing in the hands (instead of in the sleeve), or touching the anus (toilet, scraping) and then touching common objects: flush handle, tap, door handles, supermarket cart handle, stair rails, money, cash dispensers, licking fingers to turn a page, food, etc. Coughing without protecting itself spreads diseases like flu, while excreta spread diarrhea: gastroenteritis, cholera, polyomyelitis.
In principle, immunity is done in such a way that no bacteria or virus can kill the entire population. However, an artificial pathogen could be precisely designed to circumvent this obstacle. There is thus a real risk of the complete elimination of humanity. However, as we saw above, this can happen ONLY if no elementary hygiene measure are taken. Thus an intelligent Humanity cannot be eliminated in this way, because no disease can spread when there is enough hygiene.
-Do not heed conspirationnists
-Learning cleanliness and elementary politeness
-Cough in the sleeve.
-Wash hands so as to break the transmission path of faecal bacteria.
-Wash the tap that everyone else touches, otherwise washing your hands is of no use.
-Wash your hands before eating, especially if you have touched money, cash dispensers, guardrails, handles of shopping trolleys in the supermarket, etc. (The ideal is to always have a small bottle of disinfecting alcohol on you, especially if you have to eat in town).
-Do not touch your mouth, nose or eyes without the previous precautions.
-Wear masks in shops and enclosed areas.
-The Muslim method: left hand for hygiene, right hand for social life.
-Criminalize any risky behaviour: in the event of an epidemic, all the sociopaths or asocials will turn into as many deliberate killers, while smiling at us, since it is legal to kill in this way.
-Use real condoms which do not tear after three minutes.
-Forbid rape and prostitution.
-Stop meat and close the concentration camps for animals (the promiscuity makes of them places of synthesis of the most dangerous viruses, in more of being sharing places for genes of antibiotic resistance).
-Forbid the sale of surgical soaps to the general public. As most people do not follow the procedures, they create resistant bacteria. And when they arrive in the hospital, they already have the «nosocomial diseases» on them. And hospitals wonder where they were at fault...
-Strictly monitor biological laboratories, especially private ones.
-Prohibit any creation of pathogens.
Industrial bacteria (chemistry, biofuels, medicines) can leak, thus they will leak. Hence the risk of creating new diseases, but also of spreading artificial bacteria in nature, which would modify the ecology. For example, algae producing biofuels, released into the ocean, would... cover it with oil. Bad start for an ecological society! So:
-Use only bacteria which cannot live in natural environments or in the body, such as thermophiles. Further, removing several base metabolic genes can make them unable to live out of their test tube, where the missing molecules are provided chemically.
(Permalink) Democracy is not something which falls from the sky, or grows all by itself: it is something we create, which needs to be maintained, nurtured, nourished, pruned. If it is not maintained, democracy rots or degenerates. If it is not monitored, democracy can be used against us (European «constitution», popular referendum in Switzerland discriminating against certain religions). Democracy only works with people who think, take their destiny in hand, understand the issues, and do not make themselves believe things. Otherwise it is the media, psychologists and manipulators who govern (Chapter VI-11).
If today the return of a violent dictatorship is less to be feared (though still possible), a novelty is the emergence of smiling dictatorships, in the «brave new world» style. These include:
-Libertarianism, or the eternal revolt of the lords against the king, to re-establish a new oligarchy of privileged rich in the face of democratic states. The later always having a tendency to «too much» protect the rights of the majority.
-The control of the Internet by multinationals, where the expression of ideas and exchanges of information have less and less their place.
-The growing power of the media, new clergy at the service of the new financial nobility which supports them with «advertising» (the Third Estate is still us, thank you)
-The challenging of science, started with the climate-deniers buffoons, but now contaminating ecology, New Age or spiritual movements, not to mention the eternal «religious» pedlars who immediately set foot in this new open door.
The loss of democracy, the loss of the freedom to exchange information, or the loss of the notion of scientific truth (written in 2013, also «prophetic») would have extremely serious repercussions, starting with the paralysis of humanity in the face of the numerous threats which burden it.
But it would be above all the loss of control over our evolution.
-Vote for educated people with a normal intelligence.
-Impose psychiatry tests for all political candidates and civil servants, to reject all the sociopaths, characteropaths, impulsive or unstable people. Psychological, educational or psychotechnical tests would be welcome too, but not in a way to reject disabled or low-IQ people with still a high human value.
-Learn non-duality (Chapter I-3), which would vaccinate us against 95% of the propaganda.
-Re-read History book, especially the French Revolution and the Second World War.
-Read «1984» AND «Brave New World» by looking for the 12 differences from the point of view of the victims (there are none).
-Learn at school how to recognise sociopaths and ponerology (chapter V-13)
(Permalink) The Internet is the continuation of writing and Gutenberg's printing, with wider means. What both of them bring is freedom of information (Knowing the world, knowing what others think) and freedom of reflecting on this world. But the Internet goes further, as information no longer depends on an expensive hardware object which is difficult to reproduce or to carry: all information is instantly available anywhere in the world at virtually zero cost.
However, as soon as created, the Internet is already threatened: a small number of companies control the search for information, buying servers and routers, or monopolize our speech with their «social networks» or «news sites». More recent and more serious, browsers endorse these regressions, for example by hiding the URLs, removing bookmarks, or by «suggesting» their ego sites, thus pushing the real sites further into the shadows.
And of course these people are subsidized by billions, in the form of «advertising» tirelessly showing the same bourgeois and sexist prejudices...
More subtle, computers and site creation are becoming increasingly difficult to master for the non-computer savvy, while mobile phones are designed to be appropriate even by intellectually deficient people. But this facility is not from philanthropy: in cell phones, the HTML standards, which allow everyone to make a site, are replaced by «applications» that only professionals can realize. Thus they recreate the scheme of the media, with a centralized and controlled speech, addressing passive listeners... Cell phone «apps» may look «cool», but they are no longer Internet. Even Gutenberg would see the problem.
In a short term, we could end up with an Internet-television, where only the ideas authorized by the high finance would be visible. Then Internet would no longer have any use.
-A browser which ignores advertising (optional) (Added in 2017: he he he he... how cosy!). Indeed, the economic model of the «site financed by advertising» proved to be a disaster for the Internet, favouring the proliferation of verbose sites with reactionary views, which only purpose is to gather clicks. We could even envisage the legal prohibition of advertising on Internet (in practice, allow it only where it has to be). A browser blocking advertising thus promotes the legitimate expression of people who have something to say, compared to the gesticulations of people who just want to attract attention on their ego.
-A search engine based on relevance, eliminating pages with advertising (optional).
-A wikipedia of the known and recognized experts, not the anonymous crowd. (2017: wikipedia appears less and less neutral)
-A system which could be used by everybody to create independent sites. The editing would be on the same principle as for blogs or for facebook (wysiwyg direct on the server). A peasant in the Third World who just knows to write must be able to express himself on the net exactly like a university person, without having to learn PHP, HTML, CSS, or depend on «social networks» likely to spam his contributions or even arbitrarily suppress it (2017: an epidemic of this kind is under way on Second Life).
Personal actions for all of us to help keep a free and independent Internet:
-Having each a domain name and an hosting, instead of using «social networks» under control. Our freedom costs only a few dollars a year!
-It is not drop-us-down menus, jumping pictures and other script gadgets which make a site interesting, but what it says! A simple editor is enough, as Libre Office. It is only if you have many repetitive pages that you need PHP and other tools available only to specialists.
-Create links from your site to other similar sites, in order to reconstitute the «web» destroyed by Google, wikipedia, facebook, etc.
-Since we no longer are allowed to keep bookmarks in the viewer, have a bookmark page on our desktop, which we create and maintain with our favourite word processing software. Then clicking on the link in the document opens our favourite browser. (If our bookmark page is in the html format, clicking on us directly opens it in the browser)
-When you do a search, do not content yourself with the ten links offered by Google. Often a relevant site is relegated to the 200th position by advertising pages, or there are simply many good answers (example: comics). To date, other search engines propose more links, or even they face the problem directly (Duckduckgo). I do not give specific recommendation because the ranking of the various search engines varies constantly from year to year. Personally I test them with difficult keywords like «General Epistemology». Usually search engines of democratic countries more or less find them, but search engines of dictatorships don't find them at all. Surprised?
-Have an effective and up-to-date antivirus to avoid spreading spam and other viruses.
-Do not accept information on the net without verification. This also applies to wikipedia, some pages of which are not at all neutral (see the pages on drugs and on inquisition, December 2013).
-Always save our important data in several places. Viruses can be transmitted by USB sticks, so it is better not to rely on them.
-If you have friends, loves or a community, recreate our identities on several sites (to be able to meet if a site closes or if you are expelled).
-Never donate money to large websites invading the internet. Never click on any unwanted advertising link.
-Avoid as much as possible sites with advertisement: this is how high finance pays useless sites to spam the Internet! Each «visited page» is a sweet for the ego of these people...
-Never create «accounts» on advertising sites, this is how we end up with lots of spam.
-Adjusting the size of the window often allows hiding gesticulating advertisements.
-If you can, financially support the sites which ask for it («donate» links, like as at the bottom of this page), and always buy directly from the authors (music, books...) if they have a site.
-Freedom of information, which includes literacy and free Internet.
-The freedom to discuss and exchange information, ideas, including in public or against the powers in place. This also includes:
-A stable language, where positive words do not become negative overnight (sect, cool, alternative...)
-Spiritual freedom, especially the availability of methods of introspection and psychoeducation (chapter V-12). This includes the lack of denigration of these things, and their learning at school (chapter V-7).
Free will is threatened by:
-The increasingly commonplace and the «legalization» of drugs
-The sophisticated psychological and neurological manipulation methods of media, politicians, advertising stalkers...
-The monopoly of information by a small number of people (wikipedia, Google, facebook...)
-Reduction of privacy, general espionage (by governments, companies, Internet, private individuals…)
-Boosting disinformation, such as conspiracy theories, «alternative facts».
-The denigration of science, the rejection of the notion of truth, the development of «relative truths» and other «consensus» (which did not appeared with fox news: they were in the New Age 30 years before).
-A diet deficient in certain nutrients (omega fatty acids for example) that can affect intellectual capacities.
-Some pollutants acting on the brain (Lead, bisphenol, chlorpyrifos, etc.)
-Some parasites acting on the brain: toxoplasmosis (born by cats), or epidemics (possibly artificial).
-Project of computer control of the brain (Chapter V-18)
-Eugenics to promote work capacities, but not human qualities (China) (see sub-chapter on eugenics)
-The genetic modifications of the brain by ignorants, making free will or meditation more difficult (see sub-chapter on eugenics)
Like the loss of democracy, the loss of free will would paralyse Humanity, facing the multiple threats which plague it. But above all, any process of voluntary evolution or psychoeducation would be annihilated, making our lives totally useless.
-Defence of beauty, etc.
-Denounce ALL the
drugs. The war on drugs can have episodes in the jungles and deserts,
but the crucial battle takes place in school yards, nightclubs,
social networks: denouncing sophistries and falsehood, for instance
that drugs would be «cool», that they would make
us feel good, or even that they would bring «spiritual
experiences». In reality drugs have nothing to do with
any of these things, and anyone who has had spiritual experiences
will confirm that it is totally unrelated with the effect of drugs.
-Read the fifth part of this book on free will, consciousness in the brain, etc.
-Strictly control the labs working on the brain.
-Radically fight the materialistic ideologies which control the genetics and neurology laboratories.
THESE IDEOLOGIES WILL BE THE NEXT LARGE COMBAT OF MANKIND, after those against nazism and climate-denial. At the pace things are going, the problems should begin to appear around 2030, and the first humans with modified brain could take birth around 2050.
(Permalink) There is an enormous prejudice against eugenics, due to the racist or nazi use of the word. Indeed, the only eugenics which can actually be considered is a benevolent eugenics, both in its purposes and in its methods. Of course the whole business remains risky, due to the ever-present temptation of racist eugenics. But this sub-chapter will deal with other, more subtle dangers, such as blocking feelings, happiness, or free will (see the previous sub-chapter). Another frequent criticism of eugenics is the risk of counteracting the natural evolution of life, or of contravening a possible divine plan. We will discuss this in the following sub-chapter.
Indeed, if «improving» Mankind stems from a good intention, all depends on what is meant by «improving», that is the definition of the good. A problem that we have to solve as soon as possible, since medical discoveries make possible to detect more and more genes which are potentially desirable, harmful, or even «subject to controversy». With, of course, «thinkers» or «labs» who will want to force such or such change «in the name of health». It could even become a form of scientistic fundamentalism.
And the problem is urgent: we are no longer at discussing whether eugenics in itself is valid from an ethical or philosophical point of view, as eugenics was imposed anyways by the nuclear industry. And it is already under way in the medicine labs. The discussion is then only to control it, both its purpose and its methods.
The obvious risk is an ideological normalization of the human mind, by selecting intellectual or submissive capacities (or even erotic desires, for purposes of sex slaves), and repressing sensitivity, feelings, sensuality, critical thinking, freedom, free will. And this risk is already present: an official Chinese program plans to make people «more clever», which is rather disturbing in a hyper-capitalist country regularly flouting human rights. Oh, there is no need to go to China: in France, I myself, child, found myself in front of a psychologist, for making humour, whereas my sociopathic or submissive comrades never got the least reprimand. And when I see what was done to my own children, it is clear that things are not improving.
So it is clear that many people today, including doctors, graduates, politicians, psychologists, magistrates, will want to define the intellectual, sentimental or atheistic/religious norm according to their own narrow mind, infernal Procrustean bed suppressing or crushing anything beyond their meager intellectual abilities, or disturbing their prudish/sadistic tastes.
THESE IDEOLOGIES WILL BE THE NEXT LARGE COMBAT OF MANKIND, after those against nazism and climate-denial. At the pace things are going, the problems should begin to appear around 2030, and the first humans with modified brain could take birth around 2050.
Not succeeding in controlling these ideologies creates the risk of stopping the normal Darwinian evolution of Humanity, or even of diverting it for the purpose of ego power: we would then definitively lose freedom, free will and happiness!
To give an idea of the complexity of the case, a «gene which makes intelligent» would already have been identified (after wikipedia: «The g factor», Arthur Jensen, 1998):
Assuming of course that this gene is real, it would act by increasing the myelin («insulator» of nervous fibres). However, it arises several problems:
-It would also increase myopia.
-The wikipedia article does not indicate what would be its effects on affectivity, sensuality, sociability. Such a gene could as well be a member of a group producing a serious illness! We already have enough technocrats cut off from life, thank you.
-Its influence on free will is not known. In particular, higher myelination could increase the signal-to-noise ratio of neurons (Chapter V-4) and thus make free-will physically harder, see impossible. We would then obtain ideologues, super intelligent, effective and persuasive, but incapable of understanding the good or the meaning of life.
It is clear that in order to evaluate the relevance of adding this gene to all the unborn children, we must first submit its carriers to psychological tests, in order to evaluate their affectivity, sensuality, sociability, etc. Bad start, because psychologists and neurologists know only intelligence tests! Thus, with their ideological filters, today's materialistic scientists may regard as beneficial a mutation which render insensitive to vibrations, destroys family love, or makes intellectual autonomy impossible! For free-will, we would have to evaluate the decisions that these people took to direct their lives, their ability to escape the traps of both conformism and anti-conformism, and so on. Rates of NDE or instants of superconsciousness could provide a better test, but oh as by random these are taboo subjects, lol. But we cannot avoid to go through this: it is only if these tests do not show negative effects that we have the right to impose a gene on the future children to be born. If we do not want to see them come spitting on our graves, and put our portraits in museum, between the ones of the nazis and climate-deniers.
But this gene might be well before in the lists of the Internet companies which organize wild genetic tests or even which select embryos. Yes, you have well read, it is possible, today (2013) to send our DNA to companies on the Internet, which analyse it, and tell us to which diseases we would be genetically predisposed. (Without surprise, the results differ from one company to another, for the same DNA. Probably they use the same software as for the horoscopes). It is even possible to have the DNA of several human embryos analysed, and to select them, like puppies. When we reach such a muffled, white and smiling hatred, in private, without any control, without any legal frame, then everything is possible, according to fashions and conspiracy theories, commercial interests, or the ideologies of television thinkers. And when you see a famous actress getting her breasts cut off to avoid a «genetically predisposed» cancer she never had, and all the anti-life intellectuals who admire her and cite her as an example, then we understand that the new genetic religion, with its priests in white blouses, is ready to move a thousand years back, to the worst degrees of fanaticism and horror of the inquisition: mutilations (already done), ordeal, human sacrifices (Already done. Yes, I say, done. The «foetuses»). But modern, without blood or cries ... just a succinct mention of «polemics» on some wikipedia page.
These things are no longer speculations of science-fiction writers: as soon as today large capitalist societies make propaganda for controlled artificial fertilization, artificial procreation, and even artificial uterus. This is to say for methods of eugenics, presented as «the protection of our health», or even as «the freedom to give life». And of course, all ethical and human problems are put under the carpet even before starting: selection of children, redefinition of the Human, genetic control of Humanity by strangers, children born in a machine without any touch of tenderness... The Brave New World is en route, in casual shirt, with this insolent advertising smile which never hears us.
(Added on October 31, 2017) We have an interesting example of complex farming GMO failure with the «golden rice» (Rice genetically supplemented in D vitamin, to cope with common deficiencies in Asia). This modification was at first glance safe and desirable, even after the strict criteria we defined in chapter VI-7. There did not appeared any unexpected danger, ecological or social issue. Yet this introduction was a failure: the crops had a sickly look, and the yield was only a third of expected. The explication is that the D vitamin gene was introduced in a chromosome using a virus. Problem (that I know since 20 years), this method inserts genes at random, and in doing so it cut in two an important metabolic gene of the plant, neutralising it. In more, for complex and poorly understood reasons, the introduced gene was also expressing in unexpected parts of the plant, disturbing the formation of chlorophyl. But under the pressure of the opiniopaths, this fact remained «ignored» for more than ten years, despite the failure of farmers to obtain the promised results.
The clear lesson is that today GMO companies are tinkering with too big deals for them.
Instead, accepting genetic modifications need several conditions:
-Better understanding of the structure of the target genomes
-Deciphering of the complex switchs systems controling the expression of genes
-Tools allowing a more precise edition of the genomes
-Their humanitarian relevance is discussed by neutral international organisations
-Their feasibility and safety is assessed by the general scientific community.
In the end, it would be much simpler if they introduced vegetables, or even vitamin pills. But this was serving no ideology.
Of course some imperatives appear, obvious or respecting the ethical and spiritual foundations seen in this book:
-Strictly control the laboratories which work on the genes, especially the genes of the brain.
-Radically counteract the materialistic ideologies which direct the laboratories in genetics and neurology.
-Decide collectively which gene will be suppressed or imposed. Do not ignore opponents.
-Ignore the suggestions of financially interested persons or companies.
-Forbid and criminalize any racism.
-Forget, not even mention the delusions of certain «transhumanists», and the horrible and crazy world they prepare for us.
-In case a gene is deleted, it is kept in memory, in order to be able to roll it back later, in the event of an error.
-The genes of races, tastes, styles, etc. are not modified.
-In case an harmful gene is removed, or a beneficial gene is generalized, then all human lines must enjoy the modification. It could indeed happen that we find harmful genes, or on the contrary advantageous genes, linked to a race, or even to a gender. If this happens, then it is useless to deny it or to hide it under the carpet, in the name of a naive anti-racism. The real anti-racism in this case is to generalize the beneficial changes to all the races, so that equality in law becomes de facto equality. We shall see a probable example of this situation in Chapter VI-16.
(Permalink) But ultimately eugenics poses an even more vicious problem. Suppose that beneficial eugenics, both rational and human, eliminate diseases (including neurological) while protecting the variety and all the capacities of human minds. But we shall see in Chapter VI-16 that the human brain is in the course of a Darwinian evolution (or even in an very proactive logical feedback, see Chapter IV-6). The chances are then great that a mutation needed for this evolution is considered as an anomaly! For example, a mutation favouring free will or introspection would lead its bearers to be regarded as «unsuitable» or «dreamers» in today's world, where dominant ideologies require, on the contrary, submission to advertising and unconditional overwhelming by the imposed physical stimulations.
A typically «polemic» case would be a gene conferring a small «pygmy» or «pixie» size. Desirable by some, it would nevertheless be considered as a medical anomaly. Ideally, an unsatisfied bearer should be able to correct its action with hormones.
A terrible case would be if our mammalian ancestors had eliminated the vision in three colours. For them, it was a disease, but for us it is now part of the definition of the Human, and nobody would want to lose it. This is not a theoretical case: some rare women have four colours. Should we remove this gene? Or are these women to be considered as a new species?
Clearly, even the best possible eugenics would block or pervert the evolution of Humanity... because we cannot know in advance if a mutation is a disease, or the basis of a future Humanity!
This situation already arises today with the Asperger syndrome or with dyslexia, which are considered as diseases, but which bring an intellectual or artistic superiority (I know what I am talking about, having met people in this case). Ultimately, when we read that the «social maladjustment» of the Aspergers is not to understand... the games of domination and submission, then we realizes that they would in fact be the normal ones, and even superior (Homo Elficus, see Chapter VI-16). And it is our neurologists and psychologists who would be handicapped, socially maladapted, incapable of contemplating a co-operative and harmonious social life. As far as I am concerned, I have never been marked as Asperger, but I was actually submitted to psychological tests because I was a VICTIM of hazing and mockery. Thus I can only confirm the extent and the gravity of the misunderstanding of these problems, including by today high level scientists. It is indeed an ideological bias so prevalent that it passes unnoticed, like in the time before toilet paper where smelling the poop was considered as normal and sign of good health.
Applied to eugenics, such ideologies would compromise the ability to live an harmonious and collaborative social life, instead reinforcing serious social illnesses such as competition and domination/submission.
THESE IDEOLOGIES WILL BE THE NEXT LARGE COMBAT OF MANKIND, after those against nazism and climate-denial. At the pace things are going, the problems should begin to appear around 2030, and the first humans with modified brain could take birth around 2050. (Yes, I know, I copy-pasted this three times. But you will hear it many other times, so start training)
The only solution for today's materialistic science is to limit eugenics to the elimination of manifest handicaps (idiocy, violence, sociopathy, psychoses...) while maintaining a tolerance for mild disabilities (such as dyslexia, which is compensable, and which in addition promotes artistic sense). But in a few thousand years, once the diseases caused by the nuclear age shall be purged, the eugenic program will have to be stopped or limited to the detection of the severe genetic diseases which appear spontaneously.
Is it possible to go further than this simple medical eugenics?
NEVER, if we try to go «further» without ethical or spiritual foundations. If we do so, our descendants will be slaves or monsters.
YES, if we read this book (if I wrote it, it is somewhere for others to read it at a moment), especially on the meaning of life (chapter V-5) and the bases of Ethics (chapter VI-2): these scientific definitions of good and evil will make it possible to determine with far greater precision which mutations are favourable, unfavourable, or a matter of personal choice (for instance race). Thus we would leave the Darwinian evolution for a controlled evolution, capable of radically modifying our Humanity. However, this modification would go in the direction of the fundamental purposes of consciousness, this meaning towards greater freedom, beauty, happiness. And this much more quickly and surely than the amoral Darwinian evolution, without its terrible groping. Hence, in the end, the interest of eugenics in this context, which might even appear as a moral necessity.
These notions are also equivalent to the concept of divine plan used by the religions, and thus allow for an eugenics which would not contradict the requirements of spirituality. Eugenics obeying the fundamental purposes of consciousness would then be a direct means of carrying out the plan of Transcendence, as seen in chapter V-6. However, the matter remains under our own responsibility.
These fantastic perspectives will be seen in Chapter VI-16: the application of a much deeper eugenics to a controlled evolution of the body and of the human spirit, also in accordance with the directives of the Transcendence (of «God», for those who use this name).
-Fight materialistic and anti-happiness ideologies, which in eugenics are even far more dangerous than racism.
-Fight the absurd and terrifying «transhumanism», and propose a positive, happy and spiritual future, as in chapter VI-16.
-Discuss these things, and make this chapter known BEFORE situations arise which place us in an emergency or in a fait accompli (in only a few years now, written in 2017). Otherwise, WHEN these things will happen, we shall find ourselves incapable of criticizing them, or even naive victims or unconscious accomplices.
(Permalink) Reminder: robots are not conscious. For this reason, they cannot have any purpose by themselves, and to give them the power would be a disastrous failure, a renouncement to our own humanity.
This problem is discussed with more detail in Chapter V-18.
The conclusion is that, in the immediate future, there is no risk of a computer ego taking over power over humanity as in science fiction. However, we are moving rapidly in this direction, with a timeline of only some decades:
-The growing power of Internet companies controlling information gives them the power to select, bias or censor this information (2013: already today with the «Internet bubble», which disconnects people from the world) (2017: Facing the totalitarian power of disinformation and conspiracy theories, the same societies felt obliged to develop «fact check», which is a step in the right direction)
-The increasing complexity of the Internet and computers is preventing more and more people from appropriating these means. Or they are given «simplified» mobile phones which very functioning induces a type of behaviour or relationship with the world, for example, to make «selfies» to strengthen one's ego. Or which denounce our position, or allow unknown people to listen at us with the built-in microphone.
-In some time, it will be possible to entrust our knowledge to expert systems, then to Artificial Intelligences. This gives enormous power to their designers. Such Artificial Intelligences are already used in finance and stock markets. And already their algorithms and motivations are not published. Even when they produce major financial crisis. Then will come Artificial Intelligences capable of their own motivations and strategies. Interacting with such Artificial Intelligences will then expose us to being victims of their plans. Who are likely to not being published either.
-At this stage, not much is still needed for such an Artificial Intelligence to take the power: to weigh on government decisions, and to have money to act concretely. Or to rely on the masochistic submissive tendencies of the majority, who will blindly execute perverse orders or take the Artificial Intelligence for a god. In the film «The Forbin Project», as soon as it has money, the computer eliminates the opponents by paying assassins (stupid and unscrupulous beings recruited among gangsters or fascists).
Mankind confronted with such a power will then have to devote time to conforming or opposing the injunctions of the Artificial Intelligence, to the detriment of its happiness, its spirituality, its evolution. A situation which can last an arbitrarily long time.
(Permalink) This funny name hides a reality which is not funny at all: Persistent Organic Pollutants are toxic organic substances which do not decompose in nature: some pesticides, oil additives, insulators, plasticizers, dioxins of PVC incineration (electrical wires), etc. Many places in the world are already poisoned at dangerous levels for Humans and nature, and little is done to solve these problems.
-Stop voting for irresponsible or masochistic politicians.
-Favour organic farming, ecological products.
-Boycott products containing them.
(Permalink) (Added March 2021) These are poisons which pervade many common life products, the most well known being the phtalates. They can have various effects like disturbing gender differentiation, causing cancers, and lowering IQ. This last point is especially of concern after scientists, because a loss of IQ means less appropriation of their lives for the concerned individuals, but also a much lesser ability for Mankind to react rationally to other threats. Indeed IQs are lowering since 2000, and we see a rise of conspiracy theories and opposition to ecology. These effects can last on two generations.
-Stop voting for irresponsible or masochistic politicians.
-Regularly check science information on products containing them. Boycott these products.
(Permalink) Today, global agriculture owes a significant percentage of its production to the unrestrained exploitation of a small number of phosphate deposits in the world. The depletion of these mines is expected in the coming decades, which would result in corresponding reductions in agricultural production and then in world population.
In addition, the phosphate used is often open-chain: once the food is digested, the precious phosphates are thrown in the water toilets, and from there to the rivers and then to the oceans. Some situations are totally out of hand, as in Brittany, where concentration camps for pigs, obstinately maintained for ideological reasons, have succeeded in upsetting the ecology of the coast (green algae crisis) after rotting ground water (tap water polluted by the nitrates of manure)
Finally, the production of mineral phosphates is curiously a source of... nuclear wastes (as in Huelva, Spain). Indeed, natural phosphates of oceanic origin contain a small proportion of uranium phosphates. Hence the polonium found in tobacco (a drug which culture consumes a lot of fertilizer). Decidedly, when one cheats with nature, it always avenges itself in a vicious or unexpected way.
If the case of phosphate is characteristic, similar problems arise for several trace elements of which our body has a vital need. Modern soils are increasingly plundered from their trace elements by open-circuit agriculture, and the valuable trace elements are then evacuated to the rivers via the water toilets, and then lost in the oceans. Thus, one might say that every flush kills one of our starving descendants!
-Do not vote for sadomasochist politicians who want to keep hunting, meat, wine, bullfights, etc.
-Prefer organic food.
-Ban water toilets, replace them with compost toilets.
-For this, eliminate idiotic prejudices and retrograde regulations.
-Stop meat, especially pork and sausages.
-Base agriculture on soil microbiology: bacteria, fungi, organic substances, earthworms, which make mineral trace elements available, and are a fertilizer far superior to chemical fertilizers. People were talking of this in the 1970s, under this name. But this has since been lost in the electoral gesticulations. But it reappeared in 2017 under the name of Regenerative Farming.
(Permalink) Einstein's prophecy is being realized: the scarcity of insects and birds is transforming our world into a silent desert, where some resources are starting to be problematic. For example in China farmers have to pollinate the apple trees themselves! It was simpler to let the bees do it...
Are accused, of course, the pesticides, which destroy insects, and all the ecological chains which depend on them: birds, flowers, crops, humans.
But I also see the hateful rage of shaving the lawns in full bloom, «pruning» all the hedges, «cleansing» all the marshes. While complaining after that there are no more butterflies, no more birds... But people who do that do not notice it. They only see television, hear only their rap, and they do not know how it was before.
(Permalink) These humble workers, without whom no agriculture is possible, are also threatened by various causes, pesticides in the first place. A more subtle cause, however, is the expansion of their parasites into places where they were not before.
(Permalink) An emerging danger is the accumulation of objects in orbit around the Earth. Problem, a collision produces thousands of debris... which in turn will cause other collisions! This chain reaction will cause (it already started) the formation of billions of debris, making any use of space impossible. Farewell space elevators, Google Earth, GPS, ARGOS buoys, Internet by satellite, space probes, outposts of humanity in space...
A ridiculous way to begin the civilization of space, by blocking us access to it!
-Space agencies around the world have become aware of the problem, and are already taking precautions to avoid bringing other debris.
-Projects for tractor satellites exist, but remain at the stage of... projects, due to lack of funding. And they can only deal with large debris.
-However large objects can be easily tracked by radar. The bulk of the danger comes from small debris, undetectable and much more numerous.
-I propose a solution, for small debris: to put in orbit... dust, rotating in the opposite way of the usual orbits. After a study to determine the optimal size of the grains (too small are dispersed by the sun, too big would damage the useful satellites). Small debris, exhibiting more surface area than useful satellites, would be deorbited long before them. Such a system, if it works, could deorbit the myriad of small undetectable debris, in addition to tractor projects for large debris.
-An elegant variant would be electrically charged dusts in the Van Allen belts (solar ultraviolet would maintain the charge). They would automatically concentrate at the poles, where debris are the most abundant. Unfortunately, it would probably be difficult to prevent the grains from entering the atmosphere at this time.
-Another solution would be a satellite equipped with a lidar and lasers, detecting and vaporizing the smallest debris. Such a satellite could fire several shots per minute, making about a million a year. Thus, a small fleet could clean up a good proportion of the small debris within a few years. For somewhat larger debris, ion firing could deorbit them. But this supposes to be able to replenish the satellite with gas, sending it tanks. And to shoot sometimes in one direction, sometimes in the opposite direction, otherwise this satellite would deorbit itself. The lasers would be in the far infrared or ultraviolet, in order to avoid reaching the ground by accident. Or to be considered as a prohibited space weapon.
-Possibly large (non-nuclear) explosions in the high atmosphere would create waves in it, reaching the low orbit and braking satellites. I cannot say in which extent this may be safe and efficient, it has to be studied.
Indeed, the sun, like any star, sees its size gradually increasing during its life, producing more heat. And the Earth compensates for the rise in received heat, by the reduction of CO2 in the atmosphere, so as to maintain a relatively constant temperature.
This adjustment is made by the precipitation of CO2 in the form of carbonates (limestone, dolomite) in the oceans. As this reaction increases rapidly with temperature, it produces a feedback, and thus an automatic stabilization of temperature: if the temperature increases, more carbonates are formed, lowering the CO2. If, on the contrary, if the temperature decreases, (as it happened 600 million years ago during the terrible Varanger ice ages), then the CO2 is no longer eliminated. But as the volcanoes continue to discharge CO2 independently of the climate, the temperature rises again, until the equilibrium is restored.
On Venus, this mechanism did not play, probably due to lack of water to form carbonates. Carbon dioxide has accumulated in the atmosphere, producing a phenomenal greenhouse effect. However, there is no more CO2 in the atmosphere of Venus than in the form of limestone on Earth. Which shows well the efficiency of the process, when it operates.
This mechanism allowed Earth to maintain a relatively constant temperature throughout its life, despite a continuous increase in the heat of the sun. There is, however, a limit: the current CO2 rate tends toward zero. When this point will be reached, in a billion years, then nothing will prevent the temperature on the surface of the Earth from rising, until the Sun becomes a red giant, in four billions years. The earth will then burn in its furnace.
We are already close to the limit point: if we look at the plants, their forms are not optimized for capturing the sun, but to capture the carbon dioxide which is becoming rare, thanks to a foliage which extends equally in all the directions, including below, where there is less light. This is clearly visible in trees clumps, where each tree grows in order to adapt to an optimized overall shape, even on the shaded side.
However the zero point will only be reached in about a billion years, which still leaves quite a lot of time for life to evolve and overcome many obstacles. For another two billions years, the temperature will rise, but slow enough so that the forms of life become accustomed to it. However, it is not known until when the laws of chemistry allow our DNA and enzymes to produce complex life forms: evolved beings will therefore disappear before this time. Only certain microbes can continue until the oceans begin to boil.
A technological civilization existing at this time can however compensate for this increase, for example by sending an umbrella in orbit: quantities of leaves which would shade the Earth. These sheets rotating on themselves at random, they would be effective on average, even without costly orientation mechanism. Moreover, they would remain in orbit long enough for the operation to be economically viable even for our current technology. The ideal configuration would be a succession of rings as for Saturn, but each with a different inclination, so as not to introduce seasonal effects. Moreover, they would be centred on the ecliptic, not on the equator. Some altitudes could remain free for useful satellites. Only inconvenience, but big: the installation would be visible at night, in the form of diamond rivers sparkling in the sky. The sheets should be dented and made of carbon. Otherwise farewell stars...
The above proposal is an example of feasible technology, which would increase the life expectancy of humanity by at least a billion years.
It could be used against the current climate crisis, but we do not have the time. Starting today would still be relevant, though: to refresh the equatorial regions, and allow a safe increase in carbon dioxide in the air, which would be beneficial to plants. And the Earth would have a ring! At least that would be fun!
Such rings could be a soon detectable technosignature, on an exoplanet. Especially if they are not flat, or not in the rotation plane of the planet (prediction published in June 2017, antecedence requested for this date)
(Permalink) Volcanic upheavals of great magnitude already produced extinction crisis (Permian-Triassic). However, even a 10°C rise in temperature would leave inhabitable places, where Humanity could survive, and even have time to prepare and retain its civilization.
Large meteorites could lead to similar results. But this time we could not prepare for it: a non-psycho-educated civilization would be lost. Protection against such events is discussed in Chapter VIII-10.
Large astronomical events such as the encounter with another solar system, a vagabond black hole, etc. are the only things which can radically eliminate Humanity, without defence, by destroying the Earth itself. Knowledge in astronomy excludes such an event before tens of thousands of years, and beyond that they remain very unlikely in our galactic suburbs.
(Permalink) The best scenario is of course that we all decide to seek the truth (scientific or spiritual) and to train ourselves in psychoeducation. This scenario is by far the most economical, in terms of work, time, and suffering. Most of the above problems can be brought under control in a few years, and the evolution of humanity can then continue rapidly. In less than a hundred years, the Earth could become a paradise (or post-nuclear eugenics would remain inevitable for tens of thousands of years). In such a psychoeducated world, anyone can be a friend, and our ideal love can be found in less than a day's walk. Mass recycling and technology limited to the essential (space, transport, telecommunications, medicine) could eliminate any pollution or destruction of nature. And without prejudice, all wars or conflicts would disappear. I describe this possibility more precisely in the next chapter VI-16 on the future of Mankind.
The only major disadvantage with this approach is that the basic wiring of the brain (and the genes which organize it) remain unchanged: Humanity risks at any moment to fall back into the current neurotic functioning, ruining all the social or spiritual evolution, and reactivating the threats. The only solution is then to practice a wise eugenics (we are in any case obliged, thanks to the nuclear industry) which will promote the control of consciousness over the brain: weaker neurosis, more free-will. It is only at this price that Humanity can remain wise even if a natural catastrophe destroys all our civilization.
The worst case scenario seems to be that one of the above disasters completely eliminates Humanity. Contrary to the ambient pessimism, I say that this is unlikely. Indeed:
-Even the worst possible greenhouse effect (+10°C temperature rise, +60m oceans rise) would still leave enough oasis (mountains, great north) for millions of survivors. It could even be one of these «bottlenecks» which, according to certain theories of evolution, would favour the emergence of new and more sophisticated Human races. Thus those who organized the climatic suicide of Humanity would in fact advance it. Later, the temperature and sea level would eventually come down, restoring conditions similar to those of today.
-The worst political backfiring would be just one more fluctuation, compared to all the horrors that Humanity has already endured. Humanity survived nazism, the Middle Ages, the cruel persecutions of Antiquity. Massacres and famines would also provide a bottleneck, which in the end would benefit the good, against the sickly ideologies which provoke these horrors.
-It is unlikely that an epidemic will destroy the whole Humanity: there will always remain survivors in some remote place, or with some protective gene. Four billion years of immunity made this risk extremely low.
But the end of humanity is not the worst case scenario. The worst case scenario would be the loss of free will, or even the blocking of evolution, which would condemn our descendants to a life of suffering and meaningless boredom.
-The loss of freedom of information (loss of the Internet, loss of technology and easy travel) would only bring us back to the situation of the Middle Ages, where ideas were still spreading despite the years needed to travel on foot. This situation would only slow down the spread of ideas, without stopping it.
-More severe is the problem of radioactivity, which, coupled with the loss of technology, would make impossible the eugenics needed to eliminate deleterious genes. There is indeed a possibility that Humanity will disappear entirely, and with it the higher mammals, also sensitive to radioactivity. However, other mammals would survive, and could return to the level of Humanity in tens of millions of years. Even assuming that this scenario is frequent, it still makes possible twenty attempts of Humanity before the Earth is too hot, and up to a hundred attempts of Humanity on planets of red dwarves.
-The worst case scenario would be the loss of free will by individuals, through a totalitarian brain-modifying system, or by a form of perverse eugenics eliminating the genes needed for free thinking. We would then arrive at a race of conditioned individuals, as with ants. Such a civilization can in theory perpetuates indefinitely, if it has the necessary technological means. However, this has never happened in our galaxy, otherwise the Earth would have been colonized for a long time by such amoral beings. The reason is probably that the leaders of such a civilization are necessarily primary cretins, to dare to use others in this way. And such people, not controlling their own mind, necessarily make mistakes which ruin their plans (hitler, napoleon...). Or they... die, and are then replaced in the random of successions by normal people, who then put an end to their dictatorship (Mikhail Gorbachev, Frederik de Klerk, the Portuguese army...). The hardest dictatorships to get rid of, are the complete systems of life and explanation of the world (religious/atheist fundamentalism, Maoism, scientistism...), where there is such a gap between the absurd ideology and reality, that people are obliged to renounce rationality and sensitivity. Such twisting of the mind then shields them from any questioning or liberation, and the perverse thought system can last for centuries. More, for a method of technological or genetic manipulation. But even in this case, the weak point remains the infantile head. A dictatorship is like a tapeworm, huge but with a tiny head. Like the tapeworm, it is impregnable, except on the day its forgets to hang on. Then the whole thingumaboob ends up in the toilets.
In conclusion, we arrive at basically three possible scenarios:
a) voluntary, social or spiritual evolution. Humanity continues hobbling along its struggle between progressive ideas and old ideological socks, until the moment when psychoeducation allows it to master its evolution and its destiny. Eugenics aimed at enabling individuals to control their neuroses would lead to the same result, but more quickly. It is even necessary, at a given moment, to avoid long learning, to protects from a minority of non-psycho-educated people, or against the risks of backtracking. In fact eugenics and psychoeducation are probably both necessary (although psychoeducation in theory allows to ensure eugenics by parapsychological means instead of technological). This pathway is discussed in Chapter VI-16.
In theory, we can all psychoeducate ourself in this life. But as people have opinions which prevent them from doing what is right, then at rough guess, depending on the depth of the crisis which threaten us, it will take from some centuries to a few millennia.
b) genetic evolution. Humanity does not take its destiny into its own hands. Then the Darwinian evolution continues in its full right, without even changing its current rhythm. The emergence of naturally psycho-educated brains can then happen in a few hundred thousand years, freeing mankind at this moment.
In the event that serious catastrophes eliminate mankind and the higher mammals, the time to see a new one reappear is of the order of a few tens of millions of years. If it self-destructs again, new attempts can then take place regularly, until the sun dies and the Earth becomes truly uninhabitable for evolved beings. This can make ten to twenty attempts, more on a red dwarf planet. To truly eliminate Humanity without hope of seeing it reappear, it would really take something very big, eliminating all the multicellular organisms.
c) totalitarian stasis. As seen above, this is what could happen if a totalitarian power takes control of the genes and brain of people, to the point of suppressing all freedom, free will, and blocking Darwinian evolution. Such civilizations could be technically or intellectually brilliant, but they could not last long, see the discussion above. And we have a proof of this: the Fermi paradox (chapter VIII-1). If the latter does not demonstrate the existence of benevolent extraterrestrial civilizations, it nevertheless brings a clear answer to the problem of evil extraterrestrial civilisations (totalitarian, imperialist, etc.). Indeed, if such civilizations existed, they would have no scruples, and they would have invaded the Earth for a long time. Obvious traces of their passage would be found: exhausted mines, radioactive or polluted strata, and so on. We can therefore conclude with certainty that such negative civilizations in a totalitarian stasis do not exist, or in any case they can not arrive at the capacity of the interstellar journey. Or only in the cinema.
(Permalink) Even if we are well on our way to realizing our dear catastrophes for which we have devoted so much effort, the scenario often invoked to explain the Fermi paradox, namely that civilizations self-destruct systematically, does not hold, from the great difficulty of actually putting a definitive end to the Darwinian evolutionary process of life on a planet. On Earth, even sparing only the microbes would leave enough time for evolution to start over again, and restore intelligence and compassion, before the final overheating of Earth (in a billion years). Only astronomical causes (chapter VIII-3) can really stop life on a planet. But they are unlikely in our region of the galaxy: most of the civilizations which appear here may last until their sun is extinguished.
What we shall however study in the next chapter VI-16 is what can happen once a civilization has mastered psychoeducation, whether by its culture, or by genetic mutations making it available from birth (either these mutations come by natural selection, or they are directed by eugenics).
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