🌏 Born at 312 PPM

Retired NGO executive doing my best to stay informed and raise awareness about environmental crises, climate breakdown, and the rapacious, murderous impact of greedy capitalists and the politicians they own.

Why the name? Back in the day, empires placated their citizens with "bread and circuses." Now we get fast food and apps. But it's all basically the same — distraction from what's REALLY happening.

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breadandcircuses, to random
breadandcircuses, to mastodon

🌅 Good morning, ! ☕

breadandcircuses, to random

☮️ Imagine all the people living life in peace ☮️

silentbeauties, to random avatar


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  • breadandcircuses,

    @silentbeauties I agree... although Hitch also made all-time-classic films in the 1930s, 1940s, and 1960s. The master at work!

    silentbeauties, to history avatar


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  • breadandcircuses,

    @silentbeauties One of my favorite early directors! "7th Heaven" - so sublime... 😍


    @silentbeauties I love the sound design too, especially the intercutting of the musical themes near the climax (on a dedicated soundtrack; even though this was a 'silent' film with no recorded dialogue, it did have music and sound effects).


    @silentbeauties Have you seen this documentary? It's quite fascinating to watch the German influences playing out in Hollywood...

    breadandcircuses, to socialism

    I don't have any problem with a market economy, per se, but I do have a BIG problem with capitalism.

    In my preferred version of state socialism, there is no accumulation of capital, and thus no capitalism. All large industries and large-scale services are socialized, owned by the people and managed by the state (or by worker cooperatives, where practical).

    In my version of a market economy, people can own and run small companies, hire employees, set prices, make a profit... that's all fine. But they can't buy their competitors and either take them over or put them out of business. They can't open franchises, where they sell (or rent) the right to operate a different company with the same name. They're not allowed to buy their suppliers and create a conglomerate. They aren't permitted to grow so large that the market no longer operates fairly. And every business owner's wealth will be capped with a highly progressive tax structure (which is the price of using the commons to turn a profit).

    So, the marketplace as such is not the problem. The problem is capitalism.


    @rooftopaxx Thanks!


    @Salty Take a look at some of the other responses in the thread -- which refute the idea that capitalism itself is ever a source of innovation.


    @Artistgardener Yes, there's a big part of me that thinks you're right, that all I'm doing here is putting forth some positive ideas that don't stand a chance of being implemented. But what the heck, it's still worth a try!

    drewtoothpaste, to random avatar

    a New York Times writer is mad that you won't pay for his newspaper's transphobia and constant push to send your kids to war

    breadandcircuses, (edited )

    @maggiemaybe @mjc0961
    Sorta like this --
    (not much has changed in 30 years)

    breadandcircuses, (edited ) to politics

    Our capitalist rulers, and the politicians they own, are playing the long game. Since the 1950s they have been working steadily to shift the Overton window, to reduce the influence of labor unions, to boost consumerism, and to concentrate wealth and power in the hands of a few.

    A large part of that strategy involves privatizing services that used to be (and should be) public.

    They're playing the long game, and they are winning — much to the detriment of you and me and the environment we live in.

    #Politics #Capitalism #Environment


    HT for image - @nathans420

    breadandcircuses, to politics

    Want to hear some crazy radical ideas?

    Check this out...

    ❝ Capitalist society as it exists today is, in my opinion, the real source of evil. Private capital tends to become concentrated in few hands, partly because of competition among the capitalists, and partly because technological development and the increasing division of labor encourage the formation of larger units of production at the expense of smaller ones.

    The result of these developments is an oligarchy of private capital, the enormous power of which cannot be effectively checked even by a democratically organized political society. This is true since the members of legislative bodies are selected by political parties, largely financed or otherwise influenced by private capitalists who, for all practical purposes, separate the electorate from the legislature. The consequence is that the representatives of the people do not in fact sufficiently protect the interests of the underprivileged sections of the population.

    Moreover, under existing conditions, private capitalists inevitably control, directly or indirectly, the main sources of information (press, radio, education). It is thus extremely difficult, and indeed in most cases quite impossible, for the individual citizen to come to objective conclusions and to make intelligent use of his political rights. ❞

    That's from 1949 (!) and it was written by...... wait for it...... Albert Einstein.




    @AlisonCreekside Thank you!

    breadandcircuses, to random

    If you’re looking for great accounts to follow, here are some of my favorites! 👏


    Frau_Mensch, to random German avatar

    Folgt unbedingt ⬇️


    @Frau_Mensch Danke 🙏

    breadandcircuses, to environment

    If you realize that staying under 1.5C is now a fantasy... and if you've learned enough to know that temperatures will almost certainly climb far higher than that within the next few decades... and if you've heard all you need to hear about climate and ecosystem tipping points... and if you understand that our modern hyper-connected just-in-time society exists on a knife edge, where any major interruption in any part of the supply chain can potentially bring everything down... and if you've therefore accepted that collapse is inevitable...

    What do you do about it?

    Each of us here will have to decide for ourselves. There are no right or wrong answers.

    One option is to try to prepare, to become a "prepper." That might work for some people, but not for all of us.

    In any case, whatever we choose, it would be ideal if we can search deep inside and find peace within ourselves. That's the message, I think, of this heartfelt essay from Alan Urban...

    I am tired of stressing out because I’m not fully prepared. I’m never going to be fully prepared. No one is.

    Even if you’re already living off the grid and fully self-sufficient, it’s only a matter of time before a climate disaster kills your crops or destroys your home.

    If a doctor told me I had 5-15 years to live, would I spend all my free time searching for a treatment that would only buy me a few extra months?

    Of course not! I would spend my time enjoying nature, playing games, listening to music, hanging out with friends and family, and going on little adventures with my kids.

    What’s the point of surviving a little longer if you aren’t really living in the first place?

    Sure, I could spend all my free time learning knots, canning fruit, drying herbs, cleaning guns, smoking meat, sewing clothes, growing mushrooms, making candles, building booby traps, using the ham radio, and so on and so forth — and I will do some of these things.

    But if I’m being honest, most evenings I would rather watch a movie with my kids without feeling guilty that I’m not doing enough to prepare.

    I’m tired of living in the future. I want to live in the now. I want to move beyond collapse awareness and into collapse acceptance. I don’t expect to get there all at once, but already I feel less burdened.




    @kentpitman @anubis2814 That's funny. I hadn't made the Dr. Strangelove connection before (even though it's one of my favorite movies of all time), but that mine shaft scene is a perfect take on many of today's preppers.


    @GhostOnTheHalfShell @kentpitman @anubis2814 They actually shot a slapstick-style pie fight in the War Room, but Kubrick decided (probably wisely) not to use it.


    @kentpitman @GhostOnTheHalfShell @anubis2814
    I've often said that I think Dr. Strangelove is at the same time one of the funniest AND one of the scariest movies ever made. We laugh, but inwardly we cringe.

    breadandcircuses, (edited ) to science

    But wait!

    I thought all we had to do to fix the environment was go meatless once a week and buy a new electric SUV. That’s the solution, right?


    While automakers and politicians scramble to transition to a zero-emissions sector in the coming years, the over two billion tires produced internationally may be a problem themselves.

    The Yale School of the Environment discovered that tire dust — small particles that break down and wear off of a tire over time — accounts for 78% of the ocean's microplastics.

    Rebecca Sutton, an environmental scientist with the San Francisco Estuary Institute told Yale that "extremely high levels of microplastics" were found in stormwater, adding that "our estimated annual discharge of microplastics into San Francisco Bay from stormwater was seven trillion particles, and half of that was suspected tire particles."

    Tires are made of a combination of natural and synthetic rubbers and polymers that are intended to reduce the natural breakdown of a tire as it rolls over pavement.

    According to a three-year study done in the UK, a car’s four tires churn out one trillion particles for every kilometer driven. And while two billion tires are made each year now, the Yale University report points out that number is expected to reach 3.4 billion by the end of the decade.

    And remember, although they produce less emissions, EVs discharge MORE microplastics from tire wear than ICE cars, because the equivalent size vehicle is far heavier.

    As I've said many times before, the best car is not an electric car. The best car is no car at all!



    @cpm Yes! 🤗 🥰
    Beautifully stated.

    breadandcircuses, (edited ) to environment

    A blogger at Medium offers a few unpleasant truths...

    Here is my take on the state of our global civilization:

    1️⃣ The human species is in absolute overshoot. We consume more resources and release more pollution every year than what could be regenerated or absorbed by Nature. Yes, some countries consume and pollute much more than others, but that doesn’t make the fact disappear that even if we all lived like Jamaicans, we would be still living beyond Earth’s biophysical limits. And that is just the renewable resources part of the story.

    2️⃣ The four pillars of modern civilization (ammonia, plastics, steel and concrete) — the non-renewable part — all take immense amounts of fossil fuels to make. Currently there is no way to produce ammonia (a key ingredient of all fertilizers) at scale without using natural gas, nor to make plastics without oil, or to smelt iron without coal — not to mention making cement. Note how fossil fuels are not only sources of energy here, but also key ingredients for these materials: providing the necessary hydrogen and carbon atoms making these wonders of civilization possible.

    3️⃣ The best of our non-renewable resources are being depleted, fast. Using the low-hanging fruit principle we harvested the richest, most concentrated — and thus most energy efficient to get — deposits first. What remains takes an exponential increase in energy investment to extract, and might as well remain buried underground. Resource depletion doesn’t mean that we are running on empty, but that we are running out of easy to get resources — and thus bump into all sorts of limits on how much we can afford to extract.

    4️⃣ We are in a chronic transportation fuel shortage, which is expected to grow much worse due to resource depletion. Lower grade ores, deeper oil wells, switching to brown coal, etc., all provide much less value to this civilization while taking up even more diesel to mine and carry around. If you consider how depletion of conventional oil (the ideal feedstock of transportation fuels) ruins diesel supply, let alone its energy economics, you start to appreciate the scale and immediacy of the predicament we are facing. Hmm, a shrinking energy base and an ever increasing energy demand to get the same amount of stuff… what could possibly go wrong with that?

    5️⃣ Ecosystems all around the world are in free-fall. Even if we solve the energy dilemma tomorrow, this alone would still put an end to our existence. If we managed to kill 70% of vertebrate land animals, empty the seas and usher in an insect apocalypse with such a limited energy source as fossil fuels, what would we do to the planet with unlimited energy? Strip mine the entire Andes mountain range in a search for copper? Convert the whole planet into a bare concrete and glass hothouse, boiling the oceans just with the waste heat of our activities?

    It’s very important to note how all these crises are interrelated and downstream to our civilizational activities (building, mining, deforesting, tilling, burning etc.), and are not due to CO2 alone. Climate change is but one of the many symptoms and consequences of overshoot and must be treated as such.

    Replacing one energy source with another will not solve the climate predicament (let alone ecosystem collapse), nor will it alleviate resource depletion. Erasing the biosphere with electrified bulldozers in search of raw materials and places to expand our cities into, or dispersing a different set of pollutants does not change a thing for the better.

    There's more, a lot more, and it's all rather bleak, but at least it's truthful.




    @MichaelBishop Post length is determined by the admin/moderator of each separate Mastodon "instance." Where I am, the limit is 5000 characters. Sweet! 😄

    breadandcircuses, to india

    It's hard to find this in the corporate-owned (and fossil fuel friendly) news media of the Global North, but here's a story from India's Hindustan Times about a devastating flash flood and dam burst, taking many lives...

    "Sikkim: 14 dead, 120 missing, bridges, dams, roads washed away in flash flood"

    At least 14 persons were killed and another 120 people went missing after a flash flood triggered by a glacial lake outburst following heavy rains in north Sikkim in the early hours of Wednesday.

    The toll is expected to rise sharply with officials saying that at least 40 bodies have been recovered by different agencies after the disaster struck.

    “The Glacial Lake Outburst Flood (GLOF), which caused the rise of water levels with very high velocities downstream along the Teesta River Basin in the early hours of October 4, 2023, has caused severe damage in Mangan, Gangtok, Pakyong, and Namchi Districts,” said a statement issued by the Sikkim government.

    The flash flood also washed away the Teesta III dam at Chunthang. At least six bridges were washed away and the National Highway 10 (NH10) was damaged in multiple areas.

    “North Sikkim has been totally cut off from the rest of the state while Sikkim has been cut off from the rest of India as the flood had badly hit NH10,” said Prabhakar Rai, director of Sikkim’s disaster management department, said.

    North Sikkim received around 39 mm rain between Tuesday morning and Wednesday morning.

    “The rains had probably triggered an avalanche which led to a GLOF. As huge volumes of water and debris comprising boulders came gushing down they hit the hydro dam in Chunthang. The dam was washed away and the entire load gushing down with tremendous force,” said Ashim Sattar, a scientist with IISc Bengaluru, who had studied the lake and the glacier extensively.

    Unfortunately, stories like this will become all too common in the months and years ahead. What now seems like (and is) an unthinkable tragedy may soon be almost a daily occurrence.

    We are in a climate emergency. It's past time for system change, and Degrowth.



    @ve7fim Oh man. I didn't know about that. What a shit show. 😡

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