Nanda was showing off her bicycle. Mama came home and he was talking about an electric bike he had an eye on too. These people haven’t ridden bikes since they were newlyweds and they’re grandparents now. We spent all these decades developing out of that lifestyle, and now here we are. Right back where we were.
Where I live (in Sri Lanka) the petrodollars and fossil fuels have completely run out. We’re suffering and adapting and suddenly living within our means (with absolute cruelty to the poor). This is what the world has to do, minus the fucking the poor part. This has all been unsustainable. Not just for Sri Lanka, for everyone too.
We have all floated on a fossil fuel subsidy for years, shipping stuff all over the world, flying our asses around on a whim, dragging metal living rooms around wherever we go. It was never even close to sustainable and now the debt is coming due.
The whole premise of neoliberal free markets has been don’t do anything at home, don’t do anything in your village, and don’t even do anything in your country. Just ship it from wherever it’s cheapest. Capitalism in Marx’s age destroyed home industries to centralize them in urban factories, then capitalism in our age shipped those factories across the world. In the online orgy of the 1990s and 2000s the premise was that these supply chains would connect to your very doorstep, you wouldn’t even have to move. Every whim could be fulfilled, every desire delivered.
It was all a fucking fraud.
All of that is premised on fossil fuel energy. All of the convenience of today was mortgaged against cataclysm in the future. It was a fraud against all lifeforms yet to be born. The Earth was their inheritance and we squandered it so we could eat delivery out of plastic bags and have things that don’t even make us as happy. What was it all for?