I’ve always been wired to involuntarily tote up chronologies - “When were you born? How old will you be when?”.
This comes yoked to an underlying, always-pervading sense of mortality.
Remember, say, when you were 12, in 1989, agog at the grim future depicted in Blade Runner, set an unfathomable 30 years in the future?
Remember how quickly the world slipped past, and now you’re on the cusp of 42, it’s 2019 and Ridley Scott’s dystopia looks positively cuddly, considering the very real prognostications for climate calamity by 2050 - just another quick 30 year jump, maybe less - being made by, oh, 97% of scientists globally?
I won't poleaxe you with links to the daily free-for-all headfuck long list of harrowing ecological breakdown, just yet.
Truth is, you still have to go digging, even as we enter the real shit show phase.
The Guardian does a pretty good job of it, but unless you've tuned your Twitter feed to certain voices or scry the science blogs, it's practically crickets out there in the centrish media, with flat out klaxons of telling denial from the Murdochracy.
Do "our" politicians get it? Does the ability to envision their child’s future, outside comfort, affluence, basically magical thinking at this point, completely elude them? Are their actions so anchored in psychopathic self enrichment (and actual magical thinking) now that they can't even wrap their hollow heads around the sentence they're imposing on their kids and their theoretical offspring then?
As a nation, we punch above our weight.
Trump's America has its head firmly up its own expanding arse when it comes to climate, sure, and Bolsonaro's Brazil has its sights set on the utter catastrophic destruction of the Amazon, for starters, but we're keen to lock down our climate vandal wings on an existential level through insane, pointless larks like the recent Adani green light.
Here are some graphs showing you the state of play, global clean energy transition wise, as of now.
Modest progress at best. Nowhere near good enough.
What to do?
Every warm day in winter, every bird song, every moment of natural wonder with your kid is leavened with an undercurrent of dread, of tipping points and a legacy of destruction behind your individual control.
Decades of ignorance, malfeasance and inaction reaching a bottle neck in the here and now.
The constant harrowing breakdown of ecosystems, the mass flora and fauna extinctions, the daily denial from our dead shit leaders, the psychotic baying for the violent extraction of what's left of the planet's resources - it takes a psychological toll, especially when you know the fuckers who could do something are prepping to sit it out and rake over our ashes.
Our politics are broken and corrupt - we've been collectively gaslit by our governments, institutions and, no surprise, the corporations who are angling to pick the rest of the flesh off our expiring planet's corpse.
The recent election might have sniffed of salvation, but suffer no illusion - Labor are just as mealy mouthed, gutless - we could have settled for another three years of supine "maybes" and wasted time.
The Global South, that gross euphemism for brown people - formerly The Third World - have been copping the brunt of The West's largesse for decades - we owe it to them, our kids, the planet to arrest our despair with our boots on the ground.
Sure, we're all time poor and utterly bewildered about how best to make a dent in the megalithic entities arrayed against existence, effectively bent on steering us directly into the sun.
Despair and hopelessness eventually give way to a sense of optimism, given enough time.
That's why I'm going to donate the monthly proceeds of this Patreon to Extinction Rebellion. Yes, of course I'll bump it up as we grow the patronage.
By all means let your friends know.
Here, go have a squizz at XR's book blurb - it's just ten bucks if you fancy - and come back after.
What I like about this mob is the sense of staring down reality married to pragmatic optimism, action and a discernible plan.
There are some links in the footer that I'd urge you to hit up and absorb.
The internet, shit show writ large, still stands to be the nervous system of the most pressing collective organisational action in history.
(Cheers, Tim Berners-Lee, notwithstanding pretty much everything from the birth of Twitter to the present day. You'll keep.)
For fuck's sake - ignore the dismissive cries of slacktivist or keyboard warrior - everyone's got their part to play, here.
Donate your time, expertise, labour, whatever you can spare.
Maybe give a few bucks and look at what you can achieve when your calendar's opened up. Start out small, and maybe one day we can all aspire to level up to utterly legendary status, like 74 year old Audrey Cooke.
The civilisation we know might be on the way out, but, rose-tinted utopian optimism engage - that doesn't mean the one we build can't be fairer, more just and, um, collectively engaged.
Life as we know it has always been ending, in the technological abstract, whereas those in the firing line right now, like our neighbours in the Pacific Islands, are staring down actual starvation, displacement and death.
There's a pretty simple flow chart out there - if I find it again I'll repost it - that illustrates the effects of the climate crisis. Here's one where you can fill in the blanks, for now:
Sea levels rise, crops die, wars start, populations are displaced and governments in the First World close their borders, open concentration camps and stoke the fires of hateful nationalism in a furious, accelerating cycle.
It's not even slightly alarmist to suggest George Miller will go down in history as a prophet if we continue on this long kamikaze dive.
Again, well done Australia on forging the mould.
Really, well done.
Deniers revel in designating a date at which Catastrope X was meant to have arrived and crowing about its failure to arrive.
False equivalence is usually drawn between nuclear war - entirely in the reach of saner heads to avert (touch wood, g'day Iran) - and climate, which is pretty much a case of chain reaction that we might just tamp down and contain in defiance of our own bullshit at this point.
We’ll never know how well we did, how well we honoured our kids.
We’ve done a criminal job, and we're not, as a species, going to live up to the challenge proper for hypothetical generations to come.
That's no reason not to get off the devastating juggernaut we're riding and push back hard.
You can donate to Extinction Rebellion Australia here.
"Land is like the skin on the back of your hand. You inherit it, and it is your responsibility to pass it on to your children in as good a condition, or better than, that in which you received it." Raphael Bele, 1969
For more information on how to talk to your family and friends about the climate crisis, check out Don't Mention The Emergency.
Digest this 45 minute presentation by climatologist David Spratt.
Roger Hallam's Common Sense for the 21st Century is a manifesto we won't call a manifesto for the revolution we won't call a revolution to come.
Here's a song.
Home Brewed will be taking a different course in the coming weeks. My tech guys have gotten anal retentive in their search for a resistor to resuscitate my logic board - utterly pointless - so please bear with me this week while I hit the review archives for content.
You'll still your regularly scheduled BONUS POST.
The tangent to come is going to be a blast, trust me.