Reading Time: 10 minutes This week for Humanist Book Club, we’re looking at the most infamous facet of Kim Stanley Robinson’s The Ministry for the Future (2020). Yes, this near-future speculative fiction imagined quite a few ways to tackle climate change: a state-backed crypto coin to incentivize carbon sequestration, Antarctic drilling to pump meltwater out from shifting glaciers, tinting […]
Reading Time: 6 minutes According to The Guardian, which has not given up on its war counter since February 24, 2022, we are now over 572 days into the Russian invasion of Ukraine. Every day, this media outlet and many like it try to keep the world aware of the fact that, even if our terminology differs, we in […]
Reading Time: 7 minutes Long, long ago, humans tried to make sense of the world by imagining whole pantheons of self-absorbed jerks with outsized power: so-called “gods” whose family quarrels, personal tantrums, dysregulated sexual behaviors, and violent insecurity about others doing anything even close to as well as them shaped the fate of all consigned to suffer in their […]
Reading Time: 8 minutes There’s a famous saying about putting a fox in charge of the hen house that grossly underestimates human ingenuity. We are not foxes, and so we have the ability to be much cleverer custodians of institutions we’re still destroying. Why, with our managerial prowess, we can protract the chicken slaughter so it goes on for […]
Reading Time: 11 minutes This past year, news outlets have been reporting that initial predictions for polar ice melt were overly optimistic: ice sheets are melting much faster than models for the 2021 Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) Sixth Assessment Report suggested. Irrespective of whether we achieve a low greenhouse gas (GHG) emission scenario, or continue within intermediate […]
Reading Time: 10 minutes One frightfully “woke” day in April 1970, some 20 million US citizens across 2,000 colleges and 10,000 grade schools participated in a “teach-in” about environmental crisis and stewardship. Some took part in active demonstrations, cleaning up facets of their communities or marching in the streets. Others engaged in lectures and sit-ins to improve awareness of […]
Reading Time: 11 minutes Given the incentives in capitalism, the “stick” approach to climate change isn’t working. Could a new currency provide a carrot to reframe our priorities?
Reading Time: 7 minutes Can books like Kim Stanley Robinson’s ‘The Ministry for the Future’ offer a useful narrative vocabulary for hashing out possible solutions to our overheating world?
Reading Time: 12 minutes Plenty of media can make us better armchair activists. The challenge is to hold competing ideas in tension, because real-world policy doesn’t exist in a vacuum.
Reading Time: 14 minutes Christianese does a lot of heavy lifting for evangelicals. Everyday life becomes a godly melodrama. You aren’t the guy who carries the pastor’s stuff—you’re an armorbearer. You aren’t eating lunch, you’re breaking bread. Even a simple word-shuffle like Christ Jesus can give an insidery zhuzh to whatever you’re on about. The result can be a […]