Grifters and lifters – or “yes, we’re doomed: what do you propose We. Do. Differently?”

Spending too much (i.e. any) time on Twitter.

Am getting exceptionally and excitingly bored of natural scientists telling us how doomed we all because of how evil oil companies are, or how unaware the mass of the public are without simultaneously reflecting on the failure of the groups that they championed/championed them.

Am sick of hearing stuck records and banal “epiphanies” about the failures of the information deficit model (no, really? wow, I never knew) or how filling kids’ heads with information isn’t the way forward.

Am mostly sick of people doing all this – filling up everyone’s bandwidth – while having no answer to the “okay, so what do we do DIFFERENTLY?” question.

It is all variations on “the cat should wear a bell”.

It is a nice grift – you get to signal your virtue, your wisdom, your concern. You can point at the predictable bad guys (and for the avoidance of doubt OF COURSE THERE ARE BAD GUYS DOING BAD THINGS, BUT FFS WE HAVE KNOWN ABOUT THESE ASSHATS FOR THREE DECADES AND YET WE PERSIST IN THE SMUGOSPHERE AND THE EMOTACYCLE).,

Meanwhile, you don’t have to confront the “good guys” (the NGOs, so-called “blockadia” with the brutal facts of their failure, of their more than three decade long failure to confront the forces destroying the possibility of human civilisation (“I think it would be a good idea”) on earth.

You don’t have to name the shitty rituals that stabilise ineffective “resistance”, that feed into predictable boom-and-bust patterns, that throw up a few movement “stars” while killing everything else.

You don’t have to risk access to speaking gigs, you don’t have to risk convenient friendships, you don’t have to actually risk ANYTHING.

It’s a grift, basically.

What we need is lifters – people who will lift our eyes from our feet, from defeat, so we see what we have done badly. We need people with the vision and the guts to call out the failure, to diagnose it, to demonstrate that other ways of doing things are possible. Requires guts, vision, integrity. Not going to happen while grifters can still get their good guy/gal tokens from the old “cat should wear a bell” grift. It just isn’t.

Most of all we need a time machine, so we can have a do-over of the last three and a half decades.


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About manchesterclimatemonthly

Was print format from 2012 to 13. Now web only. All things climate and resilience in (Greater) Manchester.
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1 Response to Grifters and lifters – or “yes, we’re doomed: what do you propose We. Do. Differently?”

  1. Greg Robie says:

    “lifted” into grief
    a ‘lowly’ message silenced
    that death makes belief

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