PDF ✓ BOOK Collapse How Societies Chose to Fail or Succeed È REFLECTIONSLISBURNLTD

MOBI Collapse How Societies Chose to Fail or Succeed

PDF ✓ BOOK Collapse How Societies Chose to Fail or Succeed È REFLECTIONSLISBURNLTD å Brilliant illuminating and immensely absorbing Collapse is destined to take its place as one of the essential books of our time raising the urgent uestion How can our world best avoid committing ecologT caused some of the great civilizations of the past to collapse into ruin and what can we learn from their fates?As in Guns Germs and Steel Diamond weaves an all encompassing global thesis through a series of fascinating historical cultural narratives Moving from the Polynesian cultures on Easter Island to the flourishing American civilizations of the Anasazi and the Maya and finally to the doomed Viking colony on Greenland Diamond traces the fundamental pattern of catastrophe Environmental dam This is a major work Diamond looks in detail at the factors at play in the demise of civilizations in human history using a wide range of examples He offers a framework in which to structure the analysis and looks in great detail at possible and in many cases certain reasons why various societies collapsed He is not a one note analyst All problems do not fit the same mold There is considerable nuance and common sense brought to bear on this examination Foolishness plays a part greed corruption But just as freuently the actors behave rationally Maybe they were unaware or could not possibly be aware of the larger implications of their actions Maybe the land in which they lived was ill suited to large numbers of humans Maybe changes in climate made what seemed a reasonable place a death trap Clearly an analysis of why societies failed in the past with particular attention to environmental issues has direct relevance to our world today For example Polynesian islands that were dependant on resources from other islands collapsed when their import supply dried up That has relevance to oil dependant first world nations today for example Diamond goes out of his way to make a case that business is business and they are not in the business of performing charity or taking responsibility for the common weal He does point out that some businesses have been instrumental in forcing improvements in producers He cited Home Depot and BP among others although I expect he might have second thoughts about the latter's net impact I found the book to be extremely eye opening and informative It was a long slow read but well worth the effort It makes my short list of must read for anyone seriously interested in current affairs

Jared Diamond ´ Collapse How Societies Chose to Fail or Succeed PDF

Age climate change rapid population growth and unwise political choices were all factors in the demise of these societies but other societies found solutions and persisted Similar problems face us today and have already brought disaster to Rwanda and Haiti even as China and Australia are trying to cope in innovative ways Despite our own society's apparently inexhaustible wealth and unrivaled political power ominous warning signs have begun to emerge even in ecologically robust areas like Montana This is an exhaustive and exhausting read Should’ve been tightened up and trimmed down not only did I get tired of the meandering but I got worn down from getting machine gunned with an avalanche of what I considered often superfluous details Still I thought it was very good the historical examples of collapse and also the examples of societies that successfully changed to avoid disaster were interesting It put the contemporary analysisproblems we face in perspective I remember reading Guns Germs Steel and while I enjoyed it Diamond's geographical determinism was tiresome and I suspect overplayed In this book he focuses on environmental stresses and issues playing a role in collapsing societies I think he does a good job in explaining the multitude of factors beyond this arena so it isn’t uite as one tracked and only focused on environmental determinism I think environment is crucial but it’s important to add proper ualifiers and try to not overplay your thesisMy impression is anthropologists really seem to have an ax to grind with Diamond Always interesting to see what people from certain fields have to say about popular books written about their domain especially those books written by someone who isn’t part of their tribe I haven’t read specific critiues of this book just remember some articles I’ve seen where anthropologists have absolutely smashed Diamond for his other work I imagine some of their critiue is right but it seems overly harsh a bit overdone leading me to wonder if they aren’t just trying to protect their turf Anyhow I’m sure in such a huge book as this one covering so much material Diamond made some missteps but I think his overall thesis is ballpark correct and important and the general historical analysis strikes me as solid Given the interwoven nature of the global economy intricate complexity of our systems and rates of environmental destruction and pressures we are applying on environment Diamond readily admits we are facing huge potentially civilization changing downshifts Grave risks weakness or breakdown in one part of the global system can reverberate throughout So it was kind of jarring to me when he states at the end of his book that he is “cautiously optimistic” we can turn things around in regards to preventing environmental breakdowns and catastrophes for global civilization I was a bit surprised by that tbh maybe I was struck by the nonchalance of his optimism especially given his devastating analysis of what we are facing I’m certainly not as sanguine I always kind of hope that hey maybe I’ve just drank too much of that Jonestown Climate ChangeEnvironmental Apocalypse kool aid ha Would love to be magnificently wrong on everything but I’d rather try and see things as they are than try and lie to myself with beautiful illusions I’m just a lay person but my sense given what I’ve read is that we are in big trouble and courting a slowly unfurling disaster There were some great sections I liked the one where he spells out something like a list of 10 reasonsstatements people use to minimize environmental problems This includes people who have magical belief in deux ex machina future tech that will come save us from problems we have or are causing I’m glad he hates this because I hate it it really drives me bonkers the use of this concept is a great way to sidestep any responsibility or accountability for present actions and greenlights continuation of pernicious status uo I do think tech and innovation can be tools to help us but they all have various externalities and can cause new problems of their own plus in regards to environment since the systems are all so interconnected you destroy or damage one aspect it can lead to a grand cascade At that point tech can maybe help minimize issues but it is hard impossible? if damage is too great the unleashed cascade will shudder throughout the systems Good luck putting the genie back in the bottle some changes are irrevocable 6th extinction underway is a good example even the destruction of what can seem an innocuous tiny microorgamisn can completely change the ecosystem with implications for species in that system Diamond also points out another argument people use to justify environmental destruction well the environment is a luxury and we need to do everything we can for our economy which includes destroying the environment The economy is driven by the environment you break the environment or elements of it and you will likely hamstring your economy in various ways Happens again and again And it's not simple I understand the tension in this dynamic because if you are hungry today you need to do whatever it is you can to put food on the table and sometimes that includes destroying the environment which will have long term implications but if you are hungry and desperate you don't have as much luxury to think about or emphasize the long term I’m not sure how I feel about his soft defense of corporations and his emphasis on the consumer I think it annoys me lol He doesn’t give corporations a free pass but he tries to explain why they do what they do He tries to play a balanced view on all this hey corporations have to operate under their prime directive PROFITS at all costs or they will be sued by shareholders if they don’t regardless of damage done to environment community etc He also very much emphasizes consumer ability to exert pressure on companies to shift to environmentally friendly habits I believe this is a good tactic but can also be limited not to mention not all consumers have luxury to shift to environmentally friendly consumption nor the luxury of time to research and learn what those options might be Ultimately I am of the belief one has to reform the systems we are operating in this includes reforming how corporations operate instead of monolithic submission to shareholders I believe in a multi foundational mission for corporations where community workers management shareholders are all taken into consideration This is holistic in my view than the blind submission to shareholders who hold companies and company policystrategy hostage The concept of sustainable living might be a high priority for me but it is very hard given the way the system is set up I still generate a massive amount of trash and use tons of energy this is not to sidestep accountability because I should be held accountable and I can do better and many things I can do but I think even the best intentioned have a hard time because our society is set up in such a way that we are nudged pushed towards environmentally destructive options these are cheaper convenient options usually sometimes the only option Diamond doesn’t really get into this concept of reforming corporations or the infrastructure and systems within our society I think this is a good book but if you are looking for a concise systems analysis text on the environmental issues we are facing and the earth’s capacity to sustain it I highly recommend Donna Meadows Limits to Growth 30 year edition This was my favorite uote from the book and I think it is very good and can be applied to how blinded our thinking can be including my own“The values to which people cling most stubbornly under inappropriate conditions are those values that were previously the source of their greatest triumphs”Oh and here is another good uote Diamond touches on this concept and it is pertinent to many problems elites being insulated from the problems they create It is often elitescorporations who extract wealth then hightail it out of there with no con

DOC ´ Collapse How Societies Chose to Fail or Succeed ´ Jared Diamond

Collapse How Societies Chose to Fail or SucceedBrilliant illuminating and immensely absorbing Collapse is destined to take its place as one of the essential books of our time raising the urgent uestion How can our world best avoid committing ecological suicide?In his million copy bestseller Guns Germs and Steel Jared Diamond examined how and why Western civilizations developed the technologies and immunities that allowed them to dominate much of the world Now in this brilliant companion volume Diamond probes the other side of the euation Wha Jared Diamond looks at several societies that have collapsed as a result of misusing their natural resources plus a couple Tokugawa period Japan is the star example that miraculously managed to pull back from the brink At the end he also talks about some present day cases where we still don't know what will happen The one my thoughts keep returning to is medieval Greenland which Diamond discusses in a long and detailed chapter Settled in the 11th century by Vikings originally from Norway the colonists brought with them their whole way of life which was heavily organized around dairy farming There is an eerie description of a huge barn with room for 80 head of cattle; the ruins can still be seen today The colony survived for several hundred years and was then wiped out to the last man by worsening weather and the decline in the European market for narwhale ivoryBut here's the really odd thing The colonists never ate fish despite the fact that it formed the staple diet of the indigenous Greenland Eskimos Diamond says that every single archaeologist who's studied the settlement starts off convinced that there must have been some kind of mistake How is it possible that these hardy intelligent people could have failed to adapt their diet in such an obvious way? But the evidence from middens is apparently rock solid For whatever reason they would not make use of this plentiful natural resource which could easily have saved them; they perished insteadIncomprehensible isn't it? Needless to say our own society's reluctance to invest than a token amount of money in developing cheap solar power is different The two cases are in no way comparableJust back from Australia where I had several illuminating discussions with various people about solar energy Australia is almost certainly the country where it would work best Population density is very low and there is abundant sunlight The technology already exists to build cheap solar power stationsSo why don't they do it? Apparently building the power stations in desert areas isn't economically viable unless national resources are diverted to connect them to the national grid But the powerful coal lobby hates the idea and has blocked it at every turn Neither left wing nor right wing politicians dare oppose themYou often see individuals doing this kind of thing even though a given course of action is evidently going to benefit them leave their abusive partner stop binge drinking they are unable to summon the willpower to uit It's interesting and remarkable that whole societies exhibit the same behaviorAs previously noted Tony Abbott is really doing everything he can to consolidate his position as the new Dubya