Sustainable Destruction


Metamodern. Sustainable Destruction.

“We take as much as we can while leaving a somewhat manageable trail of destruction in our wake, but not so much as to send us hurling into the abyss – yet.”

By By Lenore Haynes
Photo (above) by Don Bartletti from “Bound to El Norte”.

Don’t laugh, we’re already eating plastic. Add to the lexicon, Sustainable Destruction. It fits the sensibility of the politically correct. Sustainable Energy has no meaning anymore, nor does Economic Stimulus, Education, Welfare or Healthcare Reform. So, I make a case for my new term as I think we could apply it in a Bizzaro World kind of way and make it palatable to the masses as we accept our own self-destruction.

We have initiatives and policies for sustainable economics, and sustainable development. We talk a lot about sustainability. What we don’t consider in the over-all review of sustainability is the theory of Sustainable Destruction; the fundamental principle guiding all of our foreign and domestic policies.

We no longer take what we need. We take everything we want and can. This has become the defining principle of metamodern economics and corporatism. Raw materials processed at the rate of sustainable destruction is what fuels our society’s needs. The world is full of artificial scarcities. They are generated by manipulated markets and abundantly pilfered resources. We are slowly reaching an imbalance of sustainability and we’ve guaranteed our “Mutually Assured Destruction” with the advent of atomic weapons. Nuclear MAD becomes the core ultimatum of National Security when we consider acts of aggression.

Sustainable Destruction seems cynical until we examine the process. We destabilize regions through the geopolitics of economics. We are motivated by our habits of aggressive consumerism. This condition is appropriately defined as Consumption Vanity Disorder by Peter Joseph, in the documentary, “Culture in Decline“.

Climate Change and Global Warming are hot topics today. They were since the seventies, but we called it Pollution and Industrial Waste. It was less complicated and politicized. We all realized a new paradigm had to emerge. Now it has become one of the most divisive issues in politics. Civilization is still doggy paddling between savagery and barbarism. We haven’t risen above our conditioned impulses. Impulses are controlled through mass marketing and PRopaganda and we the people have become the commodity.

We don’t know whether or not pollution and industrial waste causes Climate Change yet, but that’s not even the point. We’re debating whether or not Man has any effect on his environment while dead fish, sea mammals, and tons of plastic wash up onto our shores daily. Global Warming and Climate Change got thrown into the mix somehow to divert our focus from the obvious effects of pollution and industrial waste. Both sides of the argument are leaving us in a state of Sustainable Environmental and Economic Destruction, instead of working together. It is possible to clean up our acts while also maintaining an economy that still works.

Our culture has achieved a delicate and dangerous balance of Sustainable Destruction. We take as much as we can while leaving a somewhat “manageable” trail of destruction in our wake. But not so much as to send us hurling into the abyss – yet. There is no Sustainable Development, Sustainable Economy or Sustainable Peace on Earth. Sustainable Destruction is foreshadowing our future. When complacent people are pacified with material trivialities they will continue to accept the horrible conditions we create. As long as our mutually assured destruction is held at bay and the air and water are still barely consumable, we will continue to maintain the delicate balance of our own Sustainable Destruction – at all costs.

Fossil fuels at one time were all we had for mechanized movement over land. Oil is still the most economical energy source we have. The problem is in how we obtain and use it. I attended a marketing survey for electric cars back in the early eighties. The models they showed us looked exactly like regular cars. And twenty years later we got the Prius. Sorry but we were expecting something a little sexier.

The Metamodern, Metablog. Sustainable Destruction by EJ Wickes.
Fibers like wool, cotton and hemp, are renewable naturally. Cotton has a harvest cycle of nine months. A tree for Rayon and the other synthetic fibers takes twenty years to grow. With cotton we can complete the entire supply chain from the field to the consumer domestically. Rayon’s supply and manufacturing chain travels halfway around the world.

Most of our clothes and fiber products throughout the eighteenth, nineteenth and early twentieth centuries were made from about 80% hemp and cotton fiber. You don’t need sheep, you don’t need trees, and you don’t need nearly as much acreage to grow it. Through corporate collusion the government made hemp illegal and put the industry 80 years behind the times. Sure, we have plenty of trees, coal and oil. But other less invasive industries are held at bay by chemical substitutes for fertilizer, clothes, pharmaceuticals and even food. The pulp and paper making industries are some of the top industrial polluters in the world.

Studies are beginning to show that when we absorb bisphenol-A into our systems it doesn’t metabolize and break down like we’ve been told. Bisphenol-A is a compound that leaches out of plastic storage containers and wrappers and into our food and beverages. When this compound breaks down it produces an estrogen like effect and causes a spur in the development of fat cells. Maybe we ought to take plastic out of our diets.

It was the Green Revolution that brought Sustainable Destruction to agriculture. Another very effective buzz phrase. Des Moines is home to the World Food Prize thanks to Nobel Prize Recipient Norman Borlaug. His contributions helped to feed millions of people and that’s not debatable. What is debatable however are the increases in population and the demands for higher crop yields caused by continued world poverty. More pressure is put on the agriculture industry to produce more volume faster with less acreage. This has led to more chemicals and pesticides. We are now paying for our addiction to chemical farming.

Urban Renewal is another vastly important catchphrase. We’re still waiting for that one to take shape. Flood the hood with crack; send the cops to Israel for training and the MRAPS will be waiting for them when they get back. You want to move out of the hood? Not a chance. We already have systems in place to prevent that shit. There Goes the Neighborhood and the Declining Property Value thing really took hold when they legalized racial discrimination through the local zoning boards.

Richard Rothstein explains with great detail in his piece The Making of Ferguson how public sentiment and racial discrimination became effective through prejudicial zoning laws and state sponsored segregation policies. Real estate brokers were also complicit in the process.

Economic Stimulus, that’s a good one. For thirty years they’ve been selling us off to the highest bidder with global trade agreements, while simultaneously promising to create living wage jobs at home. We’ve been seeing a lot of corporate welfare, but not many living wage jobs going around. Tax breaks, subsidies and bailouts create jobs? That’s about as ridiculous as the Wasted Vote myth. More Sustainable Destruction. The politically correct phrase that comes to mind here is Disingenuous. Government officials don’t lie, they’re Disingenuous.

National Security and Peace Keeping. Both chock full of shit. Anyone who can read knows that they mean Police Action, Coalition Forces, Economic Hit-men, Democracy Building, Sustainable Energy and New World Order. It’s all coming together semantically for me. The spin doctors have earned their degrees. Life is “Sacred”, another useless meme. Life is sacred until we need to send your kids to die for oil or to kill someone else’s kids. So keep pumpin’ out those babies for the realm. They’re the collateral on our National Debt. Any questions?

The Metamodern. Sustainable Destruction
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