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Is the Central Value of Civilization Sustainable?

In the 1920s and 30s, a young man, Robert E. Howard, posited, in letters and in dozens of fantasy stories, his belief that Civilization was intrinsically unsustainable. Since all civilizations [not just the West, see Jared Diamond's Collapse, in which he shows that the Maya, the Easter Islanders, and the Chaco Canyon culture all raped the land and reaped the cataclysmic results] are based on greed, which necessitates slavery to facilitate hoarding of resources by the elite few, civilizations have all expanded until they suffered implosion, or invasion [by a civilization which then imploded].

The grassland ethos imported into Europe and the Americas via grain-based Middle Eastern worldviews has resulted in the concept of the West, as we know it, of a chain of inheritor cultures moving ever westward, from Iraq to California, devouring new lands, subverting new minds.

I saw this in practice out west, in Utah, as mismanagement of land and water resources are the rule, not the exception, where the delicious bison I ate, who survive on half the water of Middle Eastern originated cattle, which are less tasty and nutritious, have been removed to make room for cattle that require water importation and ruin the land. What is more, bison, being wild, could be harvested at an awesome profit, by selling hunters tags to do the work that employees would otherwise do—of slaughtering. But, since our agriculture is based on ancient Middle Eastern notions of post apocalyptic land reclamation, which, according to the earliest New England literature is the basis for American land use [see Thomas White's recitation of Genesis in his 1630, Planters Plea], postmodern America seems to stumble on blindly toward a desert of its own devise. Again, this blindness is fueled by greed, the key stone of Civilization, with the empty apogee of civilization being International Banking.

Let it rot.

Let it fall.

Varg does a nice job of explaining unsustainable agriculture in the video below.


1. The demographic studies I have seen place maximum human population at 13 billion.

2. There are arguments that the Middle East is not a desert. However, according to aridity, most of the grasslands, and even the small forested patches of the Middle East are in fact desert regions, as is much of the America West. A grassland is but one drought away from a dust-blown desert. The argument is made that only lifeless dunes are deserts, but this is a typical modern view of extreme good or bad attributed to lands which fluctuate in lushness based on many factors, most dominant being aridity. It is a fact that grain-based economies in the ancient world turned grasslands into deserts, then moved west and turned forests into grasslands, which, by stages have been and are being desertified due to current land management practices. Technically Judaism and Christianity are grassland faiths and Islam the desert-oriented successor of the two, making it a logical progression of environmentally-framed, greed-based thought.

Ishmael's Thoughts


We make such huge mistakes with our short term plans, and Varg's insight into what's the problem with civilization's consumer mindset and mono agriculture. We have trashed our earth with this practice, in the future we will have to focus on using less to survive, it will be forced upon us. My advice to members of this blog is to invest your time into developing the needed skills.

Varg vs Local Peasant

Under the God of Things

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