Summoning the Curious

Ashokan Reservoir in Ulster County facing west along the Beaver Kill Dikes, also called the Middle Dikes. The reservoir serves New York City. Photo by Eric Francis.

Dear Friend and Reader:

The weather has been interesting here in upstate New York this summer. My preference, after living in many climates, is for weather that changes every few days. That’s what it’s doing here, and I’m noticing this from day to day.

One factor locally has been the claim of wildfires in Canada. This seems to have changed the temperature patterns, and the hue of the light filtering in from the sky. I am sitting about 240 miles from the Canadian border. There have been several bouts of smog here, and as far south as New York City.

This is something new in my experience, though I am curious why I’m not seeing photos of the fires in press reports, or details of the attempts to extinguish them. Mostly I see only photos of the resulting conditions hundreds of miles away — such as the New York City skyline shrouded in orange.

If you look in Google images, you get results — but this should be a dramatic story, the biggest of the summer. Whatever is actually happening, I am sensing an interesting disconnect.

You may know that there is an alternative theory that the smoke is coming from something or somewhere else. The other night, I was reassured by a friend who has personally fought wildfires (as we looked at the haze visible at 100 feet) that it does indeed smell like the right kind of smoke — wood, not chemicals.

Bridge of the decommissioned Intrepid aircraft carrier, NYC. Photo by Eric Francis.

Record Temperatures — Is it True? Is it Carbon? Is it Your Fault?

Once again, there are reports of record temperatures — something I hear about every year. It’s definitely warmer than in previous eras. When I bought my car in 2015, my best efforts at haggling got me snow tires at wholesale. I never used them and sold them last year.

Locally, this summer is one of the coolest I remember. There are some hot muggy days, but mostly it’s below 90 and this week temperatures are floating around 80 — unseasonably cool for July. There’s been a healthy amount of rain as well. Yet there are record highs being reported all over the world.

Assuming global warming, over and over again, we are told that the problem is carbon in the atmosphere. And that is all we hear. I am made nervous by any issue where I’m informed there is just one way to think of something. Currently, the only allowable culprit is carbon emissions.

I’m also made nervous when what was a conspiracy theory a few years ago is now a mandatory article of faith. There’s a lot of walking on water happening these days.

Finally, we are made to feel that carbon pollution is the fault of consumers, rather than the designers of the manufacturing and distribution systems. And it is conveniently all blamed on civilian activity when the U.S. military is a significant carbon polluter. War is terrible for the environment.

It’s the so-called civilian infrastructure a much greater producer: As Jeff Strahl writes, the carbon is coming from “the operation of the global industrial structure, largely producing ‘civilian’, products, i.e. consumer stuff and the mining, machinery, etc. and the production equipment needed to produce this. Consumer activities amount to squat next to that.”

And I get the willies when I see an issue that used to be unpopular, denied, negated or attacked suddenly has the endorsement of all of corporate America and therefore seem wholesome and good. Hijacking of issues is as old as your local volcano. Think of the most cynical yet genius ad ever.

This reminds me of the Superbowl ad by Gillette, the one with the father teaching his female-to-male (FTM) transexual child how to shave. How touching. There is an issue that went from taboo to mandatory in about three minutes when nobody was watching. It would be funny were it not so twisted to be injecting girls with testosterone.

That was right around when Gillette ran the “toxic masculinity” ad during the Superbowl, which seems to have defined the term as being a man and also being attracted to women. Who is their ad agency? Dworkin Associates?

Staten Island Ferry. Photo by Eric Francis.

What About Peak Oil?

Sticking to climate for a moment: I am concerned that the claim of carbon emissions as the sole cause of global warming is a scrim for other issues.

However, one of the main reasons I believe it might be true is because several years ago, I think around the time of Deepwater Horizon, we learned that Exxon had suppressed studies demonstrating evidence of carbon-based global warming as far back as the 1970s.

Effects on large systems usually have many causes. We are only hearing about one, and there are people making strong cases against it. But you have to go looking for them.

It seems it’s easier to argue for switching over to electric transportation (which must be produced somehow, usually using fossil fuels — where is the discussion of the real efficiency differential?) as a consequence of global warming rather than the oil running out altogether.

Decommissioned Lockheed A-12 aboard the Intrepid in NYC. Photo by Eric Francis.

Slow Panic Versus Quick Shock

It’s a question of leveraging change using slow panic rather than quick shock. I would wager that there are lots of industrial psychologists working on how to manage these angles, and focus groups being used to get the message “right,” by which I mean convincing.

Meantime, if there’s going to be a discussion about burning fossil fuels being the cause of global climate catastrophe, the peak oil issue — that is, oil running out — should be in every discussion.

Since the whole economy is based on oil, that would seem to be the more important discussion to have, from a survival standpoint. But it’s not happening. Peak oil is still somehow a fringe theory even though just about everyone understands the concept that there is only so much oil left.

But everyone — nearly all of industry and nearly all people — are conducting themselves like there is an infinite supply.

Roads along the dikes and weirs of the Ashokan were ‘hardened’ after 9/11. This is the Beaver Kill Dike or Middle Dike, facing West. Photo by eric Francis.

Then There is Geoengineering

Everyone knows you’re a nut if you believe in “chemtrails.” And yet many people have seen them. (So therefore if you’re a witness, you have to deny it, or you’ve got issues.)

For example, one day, it’s sunny out, and some airplanes fly in a crisscross pattern, and then suddenly it’s cloudy. I witnessed this personally at Burning Man one year. The official position is that these are ordinary contrails of jet airplanes, and the “chem” part is a cospiracy.

This may be part of something larger — the intentional manipulation of the environment by chemical means. I was introduced to an expert on this issue, called geoengineering, by my upstream document source and investigative reporting coach Carol van Strum.

Her longtime friend had a house full of documentation (to match Carol’s house, full of dioxin exhibits from lawsuits). She was dying of cancer and in her last weeks. I told her I would provide a home for the documents and take up the issue, if she wanted, which never manifested.

Abandoned gas station near the Ashokan Reservoir. Photo by Eric.

But I got an earful from someone who had spent decades amassing primary source information and understood exactly what was happening.

My theory is that geoengineering is backfiring and making matters worse. That, or it’s being done intentionally; that is, to make matters worse, so that people are frightened and provoked, and any action taken is justified. In other words, the rumor is that it’s a remedy; the underlying truth is that it’s a weapon.

After the world management team ordered 4.4 billion people into their houses for a virus they cannot produce evidence of, that’s not an especially outrageous possibility.

Look around and you will find reports of high levels of aluminum in rainwater (where there should be none), or people whose dogs are in agony after walking a few steps on fresh-fallen snow. This stuff may be falling out of the sky because it was sprayed there.

So what is going on? “Carbon emissions” is the perfect distraction, especially if it’s the one and only place the conversation is allowed to go. (Woke, example 45,829.)

Battle map in the bridge of the Intrepid. Photo by Eric Francis

Our Concept of ‘The Environment’ is Too Limited

Note that the definition of “the environment” seems to be the atmosphere. We live in an ecosystem, which is also mental and emotional. The environment is what surrounds us and that we take for granted because it’s everywhere.

Lately when I describe something as “environmental,” I mean that it’s disappeared into the background.

In terms of the biosphere and our bodies, the most serious environmental issue — going back many decades — is hormone disruptors. Anyone remember Silent Spring? That was about hormone disruptors, though the words never appeared in the book. The baby birds could not develop because their eggshells were too thin.

Hormone disruptors include nearly all plastics and most contaminants, such as Roundup, DDT, PCBs and dioxin. Not to mention all the ones taken intentionally. Exposure is seriously messing with people’s concepts of themselves (ourselves), of our potential sex partners and therefore the structure of society.

Maybe so many women are disgusted by men because they are soaking in toxic, artificial estrogens (called xenoestrogens). Maybe this is some, most, or all of the gender dysphoria epidemic going on. Note, there are rules that say I cannot be considering this possibility.

Circle Line, NYC. Photo by Eric Francis.

The Impact of Digital Conditions on Psyche

The second most serious issue we’re not talking about is the impact of the digital environment on psyche. This is hard-pushing a breakdown of intellect, culture and society’s social infrastructure.

Combined, hormone chaos and digital are responsible for most of the insanity we are witnessing: the disembodied responses to problems, people living like phantoms, the meanness (which is an attempt at self-actualization), the woke woke woke, the sex/gender mess especially in kids, the amputation fetish, the false tribalism, and much else.

People say all the time the world is going insane, but we must break that down into its elements and be able to see the examples to understand the particular madness of now.

Without basic mental competence and common sense, there is no solving anything. Without the ability to think rationally, there is no identifying problems or developing solutions. Such would be a rational process, with spiritual influence guiding it as well.

Without basic mental competence and common sense, there is no solving anything. Without the ability to think rationally, there is no identifying problems or developing solutions. Such would be a rational process, with spiritual influence guiding it as well.

The Slide on the Grandmother Land. Photo by Eric Francis.

We Better Get Horny Soon

That is, unless you’re OK with artificial fetuses.

Among people who lack the drive to connect, and the hormones to accurately experience sexual desire, society crumbles, and birth rates plummet (as we are seeing). (PS, I read thirty years ago that men’s sperm counts were half that of their grandfathers. That was approaching functional infertility even then.)

This is all happening in the midst of a breakdown in mental function induced by digital conditions: i.e., society drowning in artificial stupidity. This, while the robots and the algorithms take over, day by day, hour by hour.

The tipping point was 2020. None of that could have happened without humanity severely weakened, disembodied, stressed, already panicking and in a near-total trance. An aggressive one, too.

The indicator of how much one cares about any of this is not flailing and broadcasting semaphores of goodness. It’s the desire to know more, from more points of view. The desire to understand.

Curiosity is caring.

Eric signature
Still life, Blue Studio. Photo by Eric.

3 thoughts on “Summoning the Curious”

  1. Eric Francis: I’m posting this here because I’m unable to contact you via email, it seems. I believe someone (I know who it is) has blocked my emails from reaching you, and/or she’s blocked your emails from reaching me. The reason I say that is that I’ve emailed you twice within the past few days asking you to reply to questions about the custom chart set and chart keys reading which I ordered weeks ago and haven’t received or heard back from you about.

    This post by A Midwestern Doctor is relevant to the discussion on your Substack yesterday about Joe Mercola and Chase bank:

  2. The climate crisis reaches a tipping point
    Bryan Dyne
    A joint statement released Thursday by the European Copernicus Climate Change Service (C3S) and the World Meteorological Organization (WMO) confirms that the first three weeks of July have been the warmest three-week period ever recorded and predicts that the month will be the hottest ever experienced by human civilization.
    Carlo Buontempo, the director of C3S, noted as part of the statement, “Record-breaking temperatures are part of the trend of drastic increases in global temperatures. Anthropogenic emissions are ultimately the main driver of these rising temperatures.” He continued, “July’s record is unlikely to remain isolated this year, C3S’ seasonal forecasts indicate that over land areas temperatures are likely to be well above average, exceeding the 80th percentile of climatology for the time of year.”

    A local resident reacts as the flames burn trees in Gennadi village, on the Aegean Sea island of Rhodes, southeastern Greece, on Tuesday, July 25, 2023. [AP Photo/Petros Giannakouris]
    The record broken this July was last set in August 2016, when the global average temperature spiked to 16.92 degrees Celsius (62.46 degrees Fahrenheit), as measured by the US National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA). But since July 3, the worldwide temperature averaged every 24 hours skyrocketed past that, reaching a new height of 17.23 C (63.01 F) on July 6. The coolest day since then was July 14, falling to 16.94 C (62.49 F), still just above the previous peak.
    Earth’s tropics and Northern Hemisphere have been hit particularly hard by the ongoing heatwave, with temperatures in those regions currently about 0.9 C (1.6 F) and 1.2 C (2.1 F) above average, respectively. Ocean temperatures in the North Atlantic have been shattering seasonal records since March, reaching almost 1.5 C (2.7 F) above average, while world ocean temperatures outside the poles remain 0.8 C (1.4 F) above average, including a new record 21.1 C (69.98 F), also set in March. It is increasingly likely that 2023 as a whole will become the hottest year ever recorded.
    Among the most catastrophic consequences of the record temperatures this year have been the wildfires in Canada, which have burned more than 100,000 square kilometers (38,600 square miles), nearly double the previous record set in 1989, and blanketed the North American Northeast with toxic levels of smoke and ash. Large portions of Southern Europe, the Middle East, South Asia and the entire Southern US were or still are under heat alerts. Floods have killed 47 people in the US, including 13 from the flash floods in July, while wildfires in Europe and North Africa have killed more than 40. Hundreds have died from heat stroke in Algeria, China, Cyprus, Greece, Italy, Mexico and Spain.
    Moreover, the disasters caused by climate change now are the precursors to even more catastrophic events. The water temperatures off the Florida coast—38.38 C (101.1 F)—and the extent of Antarctic sea ice—more than 2.6 million square kilometers (about 1 million square miles) below average—are indicators of what is to come. Warming oceans threaten critical coral systems and the global plankton population with disease and mass die-off, which in turn threatens the base of the entire food chain. The lack of Antarctic sea ice constantly poses the mortal danger of land ice falling into the ocean, raising ocean levels worldwide and permanently flooding coastal areas where an estimated 3 billion people live.
    There is no longer any doubt that global warming has been caused by the exploitation of Earth’s resources by anarchic capitalist production, particularly the essentially unregulated burning of coal, oil and natural gas for a century and a half. The pressing question is for a resolution to the ongoing and accelerating ecological crisis.
    In response to the C3S and WMO report, UN Secretary-General António Guterres noted at a press conference that “Humanity is in the hot seat [and] humans are to blame.” This is a false equivalency, and Guterres knows this.
    “Humanity” is not to blame; capitalism is. What really blocks every effort to seriously address the climate crisis is the profit system, the subordination of economic life to private profit and the division of the world into rival nation-states.
    In 2008, the US Socialist Equality Party statement of principles declared,
    The irreconcilable conflict between the profit system and the very survival of humanity finds, in a literal sense, its most noxious expression in the crisis of global warming and the natural environment. The cause of this crisis lies not, as is falsely claimed by the bourgeois media, with population growth. Nor is it the result of science and technology—whose development is critical to the advance of human civilization—but, rather, with their misuse by an irrational and obsolete economic order.
    It concludes,
    All scientific evidence points to the fact that nothing short of the socialist reorganization of the world economy—in which the planetary environment would no longer be held hostage to either the profit motive or destructive nationalist interests—will achieve the reductions in greenhouse gases necessary to prevent disaster.
    Every international conference to address climate change, most recently the COP27 climate summit, has ended in abject failure, as a result of the impossibility of addressing a fundamentally global problem on the basis of feuding capitalist nation-states, all of which are reneging on whatever climate pledges they made in an earlier period as they massively expand military spending.
    The capitalist profit system, which organizes society on the basis of the self-interest of the capitalist class, is organically incapable of the massive level of social planning and organization necessary to address the climate crisis.
    According to the Carbon Majors Report, which was most recently updated in 2020, the top 108 fossil fuel companies (e.g. Saudi Aramco, Chevron, Gazprom, BP, ExxonMobil) are responsible for 70 percent of greenhouse gas emissions since 1751 (the year often used as the baseline for global warming), half of which have been emitted since 1990. Just 20 of those companies are responsible for 30 percent of global emissions.
    The profits are astronomical. The head of the International Energy Agency, Fatih Birol, stated this past February that oil and gas profits globally shot up to $4 trillion in 2022, further enriching the investment firms and financial institutions in every major capitalist country that control these companies.
    While multimillionaires and billionaires gorge themselves on the resources of the Earth, it is the working class and rural masses who pay the price. The heat wave in Europe last year killed more than 61,000 people, a toll that is expected to be equalled or surpassed this year. Last year’s climate change-induced flooding in Pakistan displaced 33 million people. Around 500 million people who farm livestock are at risk of losing their livelihoods. Nearly 1 billion people are at risk of starvation as the land they rely on for sustenance becomes too arid to sustain human life.
    In other words, the fight against climate change is fundamentally a class question. The impact of climate change is most directly and catastrophically felt by the working class, including through droughts, famine, wildfires and floods. To this one can add all the workers who labor under and die as a result of extreme weather and the myriad other consequences of global warming.
    All appeals to any section of the capitalist ruling elite are therefore bankrupt. Whether led by the Democrats or Republicans in the US, or the Conservatives or Social Democrats in Europe, the major capitalist powers stand exposed as incapable and disinterested in dealing with the crisis. They are far more interested in enriching themselves through various “carbon trading” schemes and invading and destroying whole countries.
    The response of world governments to the coronavirus pandemic serves as a further example of the interests of this tiny social layer. Rather than initiating a global campaign to prevent the spread of the deadly disease, the US and every major power first sought to ensure that corporate profits, not human lives, would be protected. The underlying policy of “malign neglect” has left an estimated 24 million dead and tens of millions more suffering from Long COVID.
    As for the middle class environmental movements, their evolution is epitomized by the Greens, who have become supporters of militarism and critical instruments of class rule. The German Green Party, in particular, has, as a result of its support for capitalism, become one of the most fervent advocates of imperialist war, including the US-NATO war against Russia in Ukraine.
    The political trajectory of these parties and tendencies makes clear that any effort to abate and reverse global warming that is not based on the development of a movement of the working class to overthrow capitalism on a global scale is hopelessly utopian and bankrupt.
    The record-breaking upsurge in global temperatures is taking place at the same time as the emergence of a massive strike movement around the world. Just this past year has seen sharp struggles in the auto, healthcare and logistics industries, with explosive class battles at UPS, USPS, West Coast docks and the Big Three auto companies already taking shape in the United States alone. Just as with the fight against the coronavirus pandemic and imperialist war, the fight against climate change is inexorably bound up with the development of the class struggle.
    It is urgently necessary to arm these mounting working class struggles with a socialist perspective for the reorganization of society on a rational basis to address human needs, not private profit. This is the only means by which the climatological catastrophe can be averted.

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