The Banality of Annihilation: A Conversation with Guy McPherson

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Wed, 08/03/2016 - 8:00am to 9:00am
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Is near-term human extinction inevitable? Is reality real?

Today's guest is Guy McPherson, Ecologist and Evolutionary Biologist who coined the term "Near-term Human Extinction," saying that the human species could go extinct as soon as 2030, due to habitat loss and rapidly accelerating global warming. He taught for many years at the University of Arizona and is still Professor Emeritus there. He splits his time between his homestead in New Mexico and Belize. He will be on a brief speaking tour of the Pacific NW next week, including Portland on Monday, August 8
Abrupt Climate Change in Cascadia
The Waypost
3120 N Williams Ave, Portland, OR 97227
6:30-9 PM

The term "the banality of evil," was coined by Hannah Arendt in her book Eichmann in Jerusalem, on the trial of the chief architect of the Nazi "final solution" (genocide of the Jewish people of Germany and Eastern Europe). Her controversial use of the phrase described how the actions of Eichmann, so obscene in their nature and consequences, were "banal" in the sense that they were carried out in an unthinking, routine, bureaucratic manner. Arendt concluded that far from exhibiting a malevolent hatred of Jews which could have accounted psychologically for his participation in the Holocaust, Eichmann was an utterly innocuous individual.

Similarly, the entire human race is apparently heading towards unimaginable horrors due to irreversible climate change, yet we by and large go about our lives as if things are more or less normal. And we are all (to a greater or lesser extent) participating in this Climate Holocaust by routinely living in and fueling what McPherson calls the "heat engine" of civilization. But of course there are the counterparts to Eichmann in government, industry and finance, like the CEOs of Exxon-Mobil, BP, and Shell, who are playing a more active role in engineering our annihilation.

Except this time there won't be a reconstruction or a Nuremberg tribunal.

McPherson's NW itinerary:


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