Published on The Doomstead Diner on February19, 2017
Discuss this article at the Geopolitics Table inside the Diner
As our economy spins down, our climate deteriorates, our geopolitical system descends into chaos and warfare, placing BLAME for this sad state of affairs is a popular thing to do amongst Bloggers and people who comment on blogs. This Blame Placing works its way down from the very large to the very small. In this article, I will cover the way various Pundits and Commenters in the Collapse Blogosphere like to place blame for the ongoing Collapse of Industrial Civilization.
WE ARE ALL TO BLAME
This is the biggest subset, as in all of Humanity. The reason for our self-destruction is all of us, and Human Nature. Because "we" are all to blame, we also all deserve to DIE. As soon as possible too, since if we all die fast enough, maybe some other furry animals and trees will get to live! This is the argument you get most often on blogs like Nature Bats Last. It's the Nihilist/Misanthrope argument.
WESTERN WHITE PEOPLE ARE TO BLAME
This reduces the subset to a smaller group of people, those who as gross cultures took the most advantage the earliest from the accessing of the fossil fuel energy resource. Once that was accomplished, these cultures went on a centuries long tear subjugating other cultures all over the world, from the First Nations people in the FSoA to the Villagers in Me Lai in Vietnam and the residents of Allepo in Syria today.
BOOMERS ARE TO BLAME
This is very popular amongst the Millenial crowd, although there is a lot of self-directed guilt by the Boomers themselves as being responsible for this mess. The meme here is that Boomers created the wasteful, consumerist culture we live in and today live high on the hog while the younger generation suffers and their future is ruined.
THE BLACKS/LATINOS/NATIVES WELFARE LEECHFUCKS ARE TO BLAME
This is the spin you get on the alt-right type of website, where the population of the underclass is painted as lazy and stupid and sucking wealth from the "good productive" members of the society who still have jobs. This remains a popular blaming meme, but is beginning to fail as more of the people who used to blame these folks themselves fall off the economic cliff. To paraphrase Martin Niemholler, "First they came for the Blacks. I did not speak for them. Then they came for the Mexicans. I did not speak for them. Then they came for the Water Protectors trying to stop the Oil Pipeline under the Missouri River. I did not speak for them. When they came for me, nobody was left to speak for me".
THE CHINESE/RUSKIES ARE TO BLAME
The argument here is that these nations are the aggressors, while the Western Iluminati counties are just trying to defend "Freedom & Democracy" globally. Which by any measure is a complete crock of shit. By no means are the folks running China or Mother Russia very nice, warm and friendly people, but you can't really place the blame on them for this clusterfuck. Mostly, they have been behind the Eight Ball and just reacting all along the way. As things really spin up here, Vlad the Impaler is being painted as the Big Bad Guy, but he's just a creation of the whole system, and no different than the people who are running NATO, th EU or the FSoA. Well, you could make the case he is doing better at it, since his popularity ratings are consistently higher than those of EU heads of state. lol.
THE .01% IS TO BLAME
This blame paradigm puts our problems on the shoulders of those who have reaped the most profit from the system, the .01% of the population that controls the banking system, most means of production and most of the land mass of the earth. The folks who today fly around in Private Jets to go to conferences at Bilderberg in Switzerland. AKA, The Masters of the Universe or Illuminati.
THE CENTRAL BANKS ARE TO BLAME
This blame placing goes on the back of Fiat Money, and generally those who do this blaming are Gold Bugs. The idea being here if we had just stayed on a Gold Standard for money, our economic system would not have run amok. The CBs are blamed for the problems whether they print money or don't print money. If they print money, it devalues and you get inflation in something, somewhere. If they don't print money, you get a loss of "liquidity" and deflation. Either one screws with the purchasing power of the average J6P.
THE MEDIA IS TO BLAME
In this case, because the MSM has been brainwashing us with Bernay's style Propaganda for so long, people don't know the Truth (with a capital T), and as a result have been hoodwinked by the .01% that controls this media. So it's a corollary of the Illuminati argument. The media is also blamed for being "lefty" or "liberal", another popular group to receive blame, particularly from the Alt-Right folks mentioned above.
LEFTIES ARE TO BLAME
A very popular meme amongst the fans of Capitalism as an economic system. Socialism or Communism according to them were big failures, and all the people receiving some sort of social welfare benefit are a drain on the society. Lefties also like to kill unborn babies and want to steal money from good hard working citizens through taxation and give it to lazy, unproductive citizens.
RIGHTIES ARE TO BLAME
Righties are blamed for being war mongering, selfish and greedy people only looking out for themselves. By and large, righties have more money than lefties, and the righties feel they deserve their money and the lefties are thieves trying to steal it from them. Righties also tend to be fairly intolerant of any group other than themselves, mainly White European descendents. They also tend to believe abortion is murder and women should be forced to have babies they don't want or can't support. They definitely think LGBTQ people are perverts in need of a shrink at least, if not being jailed for moral turpitude.
CORPORATIONS ARE TO BLAME
Corporatism is a fairly new word, which fans of Capitalism invented to try and make a distinction between the Big Corporations they hate and the Small Bizman they love. Corporations get blamed from both sides of the Lefty-Righty divide for just about everything, from screwing up our economic system to screwing up the environment to stealing resources from poor people…you name it, if it is Evil the corporations are responsible for it!
RELIGION IS TO BLAME
A very popular meme, as long as it is somebody ELSE'S Religion you are blaming. Atheists blame all religions for the woes of the world. Christians blame the Muslims, Muslims blame the Christians, and everybody blames the Jews. lol. Buddhists don't get much blame, because if a Buddhist falls in the forest, does it make a sound? Druids occassionally get blamed, because they wear silly costumes and have long beards full of yesterday's lunch menu particles. Panentheists like me don't get much blame, because first of all there are vanishingly small number of Panentheists around and just about nobody else even understands what they are and how Panentheism differs from Pantheism.
BIG GOOBERMINT IS TO BLAME
Goobermint is the favorite Blame Punching Bag of the Alt-Right, Tea Party & Libertarian type folks who believe in the "Free Market", "Property Rights", "Deregulation", etc etc etc. Goobermint is blamed for getting in the way of bizness, encroaching on Freedom and Liberty, waging wars, being inefficient and wasteful of money, being loaded with imbecilic politicians, and most of all, TAXING too much!
OK! There's a brief rundown of many of the forms of blame you run across around the Collapse Blogosphere. It's not complete, for instance Vegans blame Carnivores for eating meat, and Permaculturists blame Industrial Ag for running an unsustainable food production paradigm. Pedestrians and Cyclists blame Car drivers for wasting gas and running them off the road. etc, etc, etc. Everybody's got an axe to grind on someone or something else.
Now, the issue is, what in this litany of things to blame is worthwhile to consider in terms of it being True or not as the underlying cause of the problems we face? I'm not going to make a Value Judgement on that in this article for the most part (it would take too long and this article is already long enough), if you have read my work for long enough you know where I place most of the blame.
I will take issue with the "Blame Generalists" though, the folks at the top of the list who blame ALL of Humanity for our problems! That is ridiculous though, because if you blame everyone, you blame no one. HTF is a Kalahari Bushman responsible for this mess? He has the same "Human Nature" you do or Lloyd Blankfein does, but he hardly caused the same damage as either you or Lloyd did. He did cause some of course, but what you have to do is determine LEVELS of blame. Who caused the MOST damage? Who was MOST responsible? Who had the MOST control? Who was relatively Powerless and who had Power to change the direction of society at any given point in history?
Also pointless is to blame entire generations of people, because all generations have been part of one long continuous slide, basically from the time we invented Agriculture to today. I never had any say in the choice from moving from Nomadic Hunter-Gatherer living to sedentary Ag livingor Industrial living, so HTF is that MY fault? I'm not going to take the blame for that. I'm also not going to take blame for being born a White Male, nor will I take blame for the folks running the country I live in dropping the Death From Above on Syria either. I DEFINITELY will not take the blame for The Donald being elected POTUS or the fucking stupid Executive Orders he pitches out either.
Then you have the issue of whether it is worthwhile to try and assign blame at all? Individuals, even entire classes of people get blamed, and often enough that blame is incorrectly applied, so does that mean we stop placing blame entirely because it's "not productive"? I can't place blame on DAPL for trying to run a pipeine under the Missouri River? I can't blame them for setting Attack Dogs on the Water Protectors? I can't place blame on Lloyd Blankfein for being a greedy scumbag? It's unproductive of me to blame The Donald and all the people who voted for him for being idiots? What?
Basically, somebody has to be held accountable for the actions taken as a society, and saying "We ALL are to Blame" is completely ridiculous, because we are NOT all to blame, at least not in equal amounts anyhow. The amount of blame you shoulder depends on how much control you had over the direction the society took. Most of us had virtually ZERO power even just during the time period we were alive, and we certainly had no power whatsoever over what came before the date of your birth. You're stuck with the society you are born into unless you have enough power to change it, and few do.
However, unless SOMEBODY is held accountable for the poor choices, you can't change the direction of the ship, the Titanic will sail into the Iceberg. The very FIRST thing you must do to change the direction of the society is get RID of the people in command of the ship who are sending it into the iceberg. To do that, you have to place some BLAME here, and blaming all the passengers on the Titanic for being passengers is just plain stupid. There IS Blame to be assigned here, it must be assigned and then there must be Punishment assigned as well. Otherwise, the same shit keeps happening.
Our society in aggregate has become like Parents who never will spank their children or even rebuke them in any significant way. Kids pick up on this pretty quick, and generally by the time they hit Junior High they feel INVINCIBLE! The Teachers are POWERLESS to punish them for misbehavior or disrupting the class learning. In fact, often the TEACHER is blamed for the problem, both by the parents and by the school administrators. All sorts of totally useless forms of punishment like Detention are dropped on, which actually punishes the teacher as much as the student, since now you have to spend an hour or two extra after the school day is over to monitor this detention, and you have the same behavior problems to deal with in the detention room as you had in the classroom! So your daily torture as a teacher is just extended here with this method.