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#Occupy Climate Change

The impossible is suddenly possible.

In the grand scheme of things, capitalism is a blip. A flicker on the historical radar and a rather dangerous planetary-scale experiment whose results are easy to guess and hard to ignore. When you have a giant machine pushing for infinite and perpetual growth in a world with finite resources, you know it's not going to end well. Yet right now, for the average citizen of the West, a world without the hallmarks of capitalism – without Wall Street, the rat race, shopping malls, economic growth, debt and competitive consumerism – is almost impossible to imagine. The very thought of a consumer-free world opens up such a void, such a unknowingness that it scares the bejesus out of us.

Throughout history, however, there have been people willing to place themselves in that white void and be petrified, even liberated by change. The Arab Spring, which has seen ordinary citizens revolt against mighty dictatorships, is the most recent example of that human ability. And for that reason, the Arab Spring gives us hope. Hope that the world will be able to save itself from the system that has pushed the earth and its resources to the brink. That an alternative will not only be imagined but embraced in the name of new possibilities and freedoms.

The Arab Spring also shows that although we can't imagine how it will happen or where the political and personal courage will come from, it will surprise us all the more. Despite what you may have heard by now, no one saw the Arab Spring coming. Not the political commentators, not the average person on the street and definitely not the Arab 'leaders' and 'presidents.' It came completely out of the blue, after years of complacency and apathy. Even those who first took to the streets could not have realized the significance of their actions. But once they were there, together, on Tahrir Square and at Benghazi, they didn't go home – they wanted change now and more desperately than ever.

Gaddafi, who had ruled Libya for 40 years – almost as long as we have known what we need to do to stop climate change – was forced into hiding by rebels who decided that 40years was 40 years too many. For many Libyans before the revolt, the prospect of a Gadaffi-free Libya was unimaginable. Yet Gadaffi is gone now and we are given another hint that one day – when Capitalism is least expecting it – people will say that the destruction of the planet in exchange for constant economic growth is a price too high to pay. It gives us a glimmer that one day capitalism will be gone too, replaced by a new world system that places the value of our existence and the world's existence before a quick buck.

Some say that capitalism is too big to fail, that there are too many people invested in its survival. But as we discover that the survival of capitalism means the destruction of the planet, we grow hopeful of our ability to stop, look around and step into the void.

Arwa Aburawa is editor at GreenProphet.com, the leading site on green news from the Middle East. She has also written on environmental issues for The Guardian, Al Jazeera English, Electronic Intifada and The Big Issue North. Her monthly green column can be found at SISTERS magazine.

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106 comments on the article “#Occupy Climate Change”

Displaying 71 - 80 of 106

Page 8 of 11

Anon

We are already occupying the planet you crackpots

In fact there are too many of us to live comfortably so maybe you can do us all the favour and leave please!

Anon

We are already occupying the planet you crackpots

In fact there are too many of us to live comfortably so maybe you can do us all the favour and leave please!

Anonymous

When an overwhelming majority of American citizens want the rich to pay their fair share of taxes but the politicians are too afraid of militant right wingers to act, that is clearly no longer a democracy.

Anonymous

When an overwhelming majority of American citizens want the rich to pay their fair share of taxes but the politicians are too afraid of militant right wingers to act, that is clearly no longer a democracy.

Liberty 427

I got up this morning and noticed I needed a haircut so I occupied the neighborhood barbershop for about 30 minutes, I need some misc. hardware, so I occupied Hope Depot; the fridg needed restocking, so I occupied the supermarket; and the oil in the car needed changing, so I occupied EQ Lube. I then occupied my home for the rest of the day, hose cleaning and laundry. I've doing a lot of occupying lately.

Liberty 427

I got up this morning and noticed I needed a haircut so I occupied the neighborhood barbershop for about 30 minutes, I need some misc. hardware, so I occupied Hope Depot; the fridg needed restocking, so I occupied the supermarket; and the oil in the car needed changing, so I occupied EQ Lube. I then occupied my home for the rest of the day, hose cleaning and laundry. I've doing a lot of occupying lately.

Anonymous

Very well done, I have occupied the planet for over half a century, but so far I have learned that many "revolutionaries" are undisplined and will become worse despots than the ones they are replacing a good case in point is the "shooting of Moammar Ghadafi" and the detention of his security employees, all these things can point only to one thing, human nature has not changed, it was General von Steuben that trained US revolutionaries to fight a disciplined war, and now it is time again, you guys need to acquire some discipline and some self discipline as well, otherwise the aims of your campaign against corporate greed will just be a "new greed of the underclass" that will establish a "dictatorship of a proletariat" similar to the communist dictatorship in Russia, clearly this is not something the US middleclass will support or put up with, therefore in the interest of time since it is running short if you want to "dethrone wall street kings" and that seems to be your intent, first you must know the crimes they have committed to give you a reason to oust them in the first place, here are the crimes clearly listed in his new book by Joshua Bethel, the "raping and plundering of planet earth" putting in power some of the worst if not the very worst dictatorship in the history of the planet and finally last but not least the "SUPPRESSION OF THE BOOK" that will no doubt lead to the very end of the "SECRETIVE KINGSHIP ORGANIZATION" that has raped and murdered on planet earth!

THE INTERNATIONAL MASON as written by the INTERNATIONAL JEW, MR JOSHUA Bethel a "master work of historical accounting" on the faults of the previous regime of "TYRANTS OF THE MYSTIC TIE", be sure to "make that part of your demands", to include a history of the atrocities committed by the kings that according to their own statements are "KINGS WHO CAN DO NO WRONG"!

Anonymous

Very well done, I have occupied the planet for over half a century, but so far I have learned that many "revolutionaries" are undisplined and will become worse despots than the ones they are replacing a good case in point is the "shooting of Moammar Ghadafi" and the detention of his security employees, all these things can point only to one thing, human nature has not changed, it was General von Steuben that trained US revolutionaries to fight a disciplined war, and now it is time again, you guys need to acquire some discipline and some self discipline as well, otherwise the aims of your campaign against corporate greed will just be a "new greed of the underclass" that will establish a "dictatorship of a proletariat" similar to the communist dictatorship in Russia, clearly this is not something the US middleclass will support or put up with, therefore in the interest of time since it is running short if you want to "dethrone wall street kings" and that seems to be your intent, first you must know the crimes they have committed to give you a reason to oust them in the first place, here are the crimes clearly listed in his new book by Joshua Bethel, the "raping and plundering of planet earth" putting in power some of the worst if not the very worst dictatorship in the history of the planet and finally last but not least the "SUPPRESSION OF THE BOOK" that will no doubt lead to the very end of the "SECRETIVE KINGSHIP ORGANIZATION" that has raped and murdered on planet earth!

THE INTERNATIONAL MASON as written by the INTERNATIONAL JEW, MR JOSHUA Bethel a "master work of historical accounting" on the faults of the previous regime of "TYRANTS OF THE MYSTIC TIE", be sure to "make that part of your demands", to include a history of the atrocities committed by the kings that according to their own statements are "KINGS WHO CAN DO NO WRONG"!

trailersam@insi...

Your sarcasm has a welcome point. It's a rational idea that we don't need to destroy every system, just the predatory loan sharking of the financial institutions. A proper punishment for them would be to simply ignore their "debt", refuse to pay them and go on as usual. The bankers, of course, predict catastrophe if we do that, but what would really change?

trailersam@insi...

Your sarcasm has a welcome point. It's a rational idea that we don't need to destroy every system, just the predatory loan sharking of the financial institutions. A proper punishment for them would be to simply ignore their "debt", refuse to pay them and go on as usual. The bankers, of course, predict catastrophe if we do that, but what would really change?

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