Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Capitalism's environmental chaos

Chris Williams, author of Ecology and Socialism: Solutions to Capitalist Ecological Crisis, reviews a new book by Christian Parenti that documents the destruction that capitalism and the free market are inflicting on the planet.

Chris Williams
Socialist Worker
September 14, 2011

WHO KILLED Ekaru Loruman?

Until his recent violent death, Ekaru was a pastoralist from northwestern Kenya, a member of the Turkana tribe. He died when a bullet ripped out the side of his head as he tried to defend his few head of cattle, his only form of wealth and livelihood.

One could respond that a member of the Pokot tribe, a traditional enemy of the Turkana, who live and farm in the surrounding hills and raid across the border from Uganda killed Ekaru. That would, after all, be a factually correct response, and any murder investigation by local police would, with the identification and arrest of the individual responsible, end there.

Christian Parenti, in his excellent, if flawed, new book Tropic of Chaos, finds this a deeply unsatisfying answer. And so should anyone seeking to better understand the world and the twin ecological and economic crises in order to take action to ameliorate the consequences of those crises.

Parenti's book makes an important contribution to that effort--he has written a sweeping discourse on the collision set in motion between the natural and the social world--what he calls the "catastrophic convergence": the confluence of poverty, violence and climate change.

Read more HERE.

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