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1012royscranton

Significant and catastrophic levels of warming are baked into the system because of the amount of carbon dioxide we've already released into the atmosphere. The Arctic is in meltdown right now. And there's no stopping that. With a global revolution in socio-economic structures, we could slow it down, but there's no stopping intense and destructive levels of warming. Presuming that if we just have the right hope, or legislation, we can fix it - that's already a form of denial.

Writer Roy Scranton looks at the signs of this doomed civilization - a collapsing political system, massive environmental degradation and a future of inevtiable, irreversible climate change - and explains why the thrilling and terrifying task required of us is to let go of this world and create a new one, together, while there's still time.

Roy is author of We're Doomed. Now What? Essays on War and Climate Change from Soho Press.

 


Episode 1012

Doom and Bloom

Jul 14
Posted by Alexander Jerri
1012lineup

Listen live from 9AM - 1:00PM Central on WNUR 89.3FM / stream at www.thisishell.com / subscribe to the podcast

 

9:20 - Writer Maximillian Alvarez explores the sanctity of waste and ownership in the digital age.

Maximillian wrote the article The Death of Media for The Baffler.

 

10:05 - Journalist Anna Clark traces the toxic politics that poisoned the people of Flint.

Anna is author of The Poisoned City: Flint's Water and the American Urban Tragedy from Metropolitan Books.

 

11:05 - Writer Roy Scranton explains how to live on a dying planet.

Roy is author of We're Doomed. Now What? Essays on War and Climate Change from Soho Press.

 

12:05 - The Internationalist Commune of Rojava discuss the work of social and ecological revolution.

Dog Section Press is raising funds to publish the commune's book Make Rojava Green Again.

Episode 1011

No Entry

Jul 7
Posted by Alexander Jerri

Welcome to the Moment of Truth: the thirst that is the drink.

First of all, allow me to apologize: I apologize. Thank you for allowing my apology.

Now, imagine a driveway up the spine of a hill. The top of the hill is a plateau, surrounded in every direction by an abrupt drop-off, so the only way up or down the hill is the driveway. Otherwise, it's a cliff on all sides.

There's a gate at the bottom of the driveway with a combination lock. When you leave the plateau area, you lock the gate. When you want to enter, you first have to unlock the gate, open it, and drive your car up to the top of the plateau. You can leave the gate unlocked until you leave.

Imagine that, when you leave, you have to back all the way down the 45-degree, narrow incline, and it's a pain in the ass because the space between the gate posts is just a little wider than your car.

After you back through the gate, you get out of the car and close and lock the gate. Then you drive off to wherever you want to go. Hamburger Mary's. The library.

But what if you were backing down, stopped the car and got out and locked the gate before you had backed through it? You would have locked yourself in, at least until you unlocked it and let yourself out.

For some reason it struck me as ... striking... that if you do something before a certain spatial/temporal line is crossed, it can cause some inconvenience. If you try to light the burner before turning on the gas, it will not light. If you try to do brushwork before dipping your brush in paint, you will not apply pigment, but only hear a mild scratching noise at most.

Physicists and stoners have long wondered about the arrow of time. What is it about our limited perception that makes us experience time as moving only forward? I would like to ask: what about the arrow of space?

Events have a spatial sequence, not just a temporal sequence, and our rootedness in space, our experience of space as keeping locations separate from each other, is intimately tied to our experiencing time as keeping moments separate from each other. Time and space are metaphors for each other in that sense.

Time has an end for humans. It's when we croak. Space has the same end. When you're out of time, you're out of space. There was no time in your life when you skipped over a few inches of space. Your lifelong trail through space is as continuous as your trail through time, and at the end of life, you run out.

If you could... read more

Posted by Alexander Jerri
1011lineup

Listen live from 9AM - 1:00PM Central on WNUR 89.3FM / stream at www.thisishell.com / subscribe to the podcast

 

9:20 - Journalist Jacob Hamburger explains why the new French left has old French left problems.

Jacob wrote the article Whose Populism? The Mixed Messages of La France Insoumise for Dissent.

 

10:05 - Historian Anna-Lisa Cox traces the westward journey of America's Black pioneers.

Anna-Lisa is author of The Bone and Sinew of the Land: America's Forgotten Black Pioneers and the Struggle for Equality from PublicAffairs.

 

11:05 - Journalist Eileen Truax explores the new battlegrounds in America's border wars.

Eileen is author of We Built the Wall: How the US Keeps Out Asylum Seekers from Mexico, Central America and Beyond from Verso.

 

12:05 - Journalist Yasha Levine looks behind the false front of Silicon Valley's corporate resistance.

Yasha wrote the article All EFF’d Up: Silicon Valley’s astroturf privacy shakedown for The Baffler.

 

12:45 - In a Moment of Truth, Jeff Dorchen gets all tangled up in space and time.

 

Episode 1010

Lost Time

Jul 1
Posted by Alexander Jerri

Welcome to the Moment of Truth: the thirst that is the drink.

There were several momentous legal cases heard this week, one about gerrymandering, one about public unions, one about keeping Muslims out of the country, and it was clear they were going to require careful consideration and intense analysis by the nation's most vital legal minds. Instead they were heard by the Supreme Court.

I'm appalled by SCROTUS, the Supreme Court Republicans of the United States. They're awful. And there are officially going to be five of them now. They're rotten, those SCROTUS.

I'm here to complain about Mitch McConnell stealing the Supreme Court seat from Obama. I'm here to say what everyone is already thinking and saying. But I'm here to say it on This Is Hell. I'll tell you what I think about Mitch McConnell. Now, if a Democrat had done a version of what Mitch did, and thwarted a Republican jerk from appointing a rightwing ideologue to the court, I would've said, Good job, comrade! Except, in Mitch's version, Obama wasn't a particularly left-leaning president, and Merrick Garland, whom Obama put forward as a sop to the GOP, anyway, was no left ideologue. But apparently being reasonable, compromising, polite and black are not things the GOP will allow to go unpunished. How many times did Obama learn that? Or, rather, experience it, because he never seemed to learn anything.

No Democratic leader would refuse a president his constitutional right to nominate a justice for a newly-empty seat, and, not since FDR at least, would any Democrat ever commit such a blatant violation of Constitutional and Congressional norms regarding the court. Certainly these days Dems wouldn't dare poke the GOP hornets' nest. They're keeping their powder dry. They got so much dry powder they don't know what to do with it all. And they're keeping it dry until the end of the world, which they think will be sooner if they keep their powder dry enough. Keep the powder dry to hasten the end times.

The GOP on the other hand is willing to burn their powder at the drop of a hat. They'll do anything to get what they want. The Dems are ready and willing to do nothing to get what they want, despite having done nothing, and yet not having got what they want. All the Dems have is a surplus of dry powder, over which they've erected a bulletproof dome to make sure it never ignites. Dry powder for dry powder's sake. There might not really even be any powder there.... read more

Posted by Alexander Jerri
1010lineup

Listen live from 9AM - 1:00PM Central on WNUR 89.3FM / stream at www.thisishell.com / subscribe to the podcast

 

9:20 - Law professor Robert L. Tsai examines the right's anti-immigrant, demographic control machine.

Robert wrote the Boston Review article Trumpism Before Trump with Calvin TerBeek.

 

10:00 - Live from Mexico City, Laura Carlsen reports on the crises already facing Mexico's next president.

Laura previewed the elections in her latest report for Hecho en América.

 

10:35 - Political scientist Ed Burmila sees America's immigrant detainee crisis slipping out of sight in the future.

Ed wrote the Baffler article Out of Sight, Out of Our Minds.

 

11:05 - Historian Catherine Nixey explores the violent purging of the Classical world by early Christians.

Catherine is author of The Darkening Age: The Christian Destruction of the Classical World from Houghton Mifflin Harcourt.

 

12:05 - Economist Rob Larson explains why capitalism will always fail to deliver freedom for humanity.

Rob is author of Capitalism vs. Freedom: The Toll Road to Serfdom from Zero Books.

 

12:45 - In a Moment of Truth, Jeff Dorchen is appalled by SCROTUS.

 

Episode 1009

IDPROLE

Jun 24
Posted by Alexander Jerri

Welcome to the Moment of Truth: the thirst that is the drink.

The Jews, my people. Such a stiff-necked people. You want to own the Holocaust, I get it. You don't want to share the word "concentration camp." Yeah, that makes sense. Those little children at the southern border aren't being forced to do labor, so we can't call them labor camps. They're not being exterminated or worked to death, so we can't call them extermination camps or death camps. We can call them "internment camps," because it's like they're in prison. But not concentration camps? Because that's our word? Even though they're being concentrated into a camp? That's not enough for you? You think they invented the concentration camp just for Jews in Europe in the 30s and 40s? I won't go into the historical error you're making, there's a Slate article for that.

What I'm going to beat you up about is, just don't be so morally superior. Don't hold your suffering over others. We're on the verge of losing the special victim status associated with the Shoah, and holding onto "concentration camp" doesn't really help. All over Europe and here in the US, new rightwing nationalist groups are firmly establishing themselves. It's not just anti-Semitism they're peddling, either, it's anti-foreigner, whatever they decide a foreigner is. And I want them to know that, if they're concentrating people in camps, or if they're beating people up, or making anti-foreigner laws aimed at "strengthening the borders," whatever they want to call it, it does resemble the rise of fascism in Europe in the 20s and 30s of last century. This is what it looked like.

They want to say, "Look, this is a special problem, these Latins or Muslims, or whatever, so a little nativist suspicion and anti-immigrant rhetoric here or there is okay, it's not a sign we're on the slippery slope toward Hitler, Franco, Vichy or Mussolini. Let's at least rehabilitate love of country! Our country for us! America first. Is that so bad? At least we're not keeping people in concentration camps." Bee ess. It's the same old fascism they're constructing, and if you aren't behind calling them out for their attempts to put a white Christian dictatorship in place of our nominal democracy, take your silly asses home. Don't worry, they'll come for you later. Want to wait till you're packed into a cattle car to Wyoming to call them what they are? More fool you.

And my black friends, is it really so important, as... read more