[permaculture] Huh!

Brent McMillan brent at gp.org
Thu Mar 4 16:58:00 EST 2010

On Monday I attended a special presentation entitled, "The Global 
Implications of Climate Migration" hosted by the Center for American 
Progress in Washington, DC.

Panelists included:
Cynthia Brady (sitting in for Neil Levine, Director, Office of Conflict 
Management and Mitigation, USAID),
Susan Martin , Herzberg Professor if International Migration, School of 
Foreign Service, Georgetown University
David Waskow , Climate Change Program Director, Oxfam America

They focused on human migration as the result of:
1) Increased drought and desertification
2) Rising Sea Levels
3) Intensification of Natural Disasters
4) (and most problematic) Increased competition for Resources

These forms of migration tend to follow traditional migration routes. 
Here migration is seen as a result of failed adaptation.

Typical types of solutions that they discussed included:

Build climate resilience and adaptation strategies in vulnerable communities
Managing risk, promote insurance (and other tools)
Resettling populations when absolutely necessary (Resettlement as a last 

To get to my point, there was a representative in the audience from the 
Embassy of China. To his credit He damn near laughed in their faces when 
they talked about selling insurance to the most disadvantaged people on 
the planet to mitigate the impact of climate change. As he put it 
diplomatically, after struggling to not laugh at loud, "I doubt the 
ability of climate insurance to effectively mitigate this. Insurance 
companies are after money."

At that moment it sure it home the bankruptcy of capitalism to deal with 
this effectively, especially considering that it's western economic 
activity that is responsible for climate change in the first place. We 
now see the military industrial complex moving to disaster management as 
yet another profit center.

(And I not saying that I'm any fan of China, I'm not, but their presence 
in Washington DC is definitely increasing. I'm concerned about what kind 
of deals were cut behind the scenes on 'our behalf' for China to have 
picked up so much of our debt. I have some indication of what that is 
and it's not good, but I would like to have more evidence before I put 
anything in writing.)


Brent McMillan, Steward of Woodhaven
Avilla, IN USA

Lee Flier wrote:
> Just to play devil's advocate for a moment... there are those who 
> believe (and I think this is quite a legitimate point) that if we hadn't 
> made the deals we did with China for example, we'd be in far more danger 
> of an actual war with them, and many other countries' borders would also 
> be in danger.  If they don't find more civilized ways to develop their 
> economy, given their huge population, their only recourse is to try to 
> take over more land and resources, which of course they've already shown 
> that they don't shy away from doing.
> As it is, having China as economically dependent on us as they are has 
> worked out pretty well in maintaining the peace.  And I agree with 
> Clinton's basic sentiment that as people become more prosperous and less 
> desperate, they're not so likely to take up arms.  If China is allowed 
> to develop for awhile they may well end up having a peaceful revolution 
> from within, and this could only be good for the world.
> The problem is that this process is frustratingly slow, and there are 
> too many people who reap illicit profits along the way.  How to avoid 
> that, I couldn't tell you.  Progress always seems to come at a high 
> price.  And of course, there's the whole question of how much the world 
> can really "develop" using an unsustainable model.  I think we need to 
> confront that problem, but meanwhile, there are lots of other countries 
> who don't really care about the answer - they just want their 
> refrigerators and their cars, and if that means going to war to get them 
> because we won't trade them for cheap labor, well that's what they'll do.
> On 3/3/2010 10:00 PM, Stephen Sherman wrote:
>> Nice happy talk from the old Pres; maybe he even believes it. However
>> history has proven this sales pitch to be nothing more than a load of
>> rubbish.
>> The end results of NAFTA, free trade with China, and all the other scams
>> which were sold on lines and promises like these, have ended up quite
>> differently. The US and the West has given up their manufacturing jobs
>> and expertise so that large corporations can pocket the wage differences
>> between home and third world work forces. Workers on both sides have
>> seen increased unemployment and declining standards of living. The West
>> when the manufacturing jobs first left. And more recently those workers
>> who first got the jobs as manufacturing moves yet again to cheaper labor
>> markets.
>> These policies have been a disaster for all. It will take decades to
>> repair the damage done.
>> On 3/3/2010 6:33 PM, Keith Johnson wrote:
>>> /"The more complex societies get and the more complex the networks of
>>> interdependence within and beyond community and national borders get,
>>> the more people are forced in their own interests to find non-zero-sum
>>> solutions. That is, win--win solutions instead of win--lose
>>> solutions.... Because we find as our interdependence increases that, on
>>> the whole, we do better when other people do better as well --- so we
>>> have to find ways that we can all win, we have to accommodate each
>>> other...."
>>> found at http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Zero-sum
>>> quoting.....Bill Clinton
>>> ...........................................................................................................
>>> /"The best defense against hard times is a well-fed neighbor."
>>> <http://www.wellfedneighbor.com/>
>>> 462 members
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