Eating The Seed Corn
The NY Times is reporting that farmers in the high plains are using up the last of their local aquifer’s water supply in order to grow cash crops. It’s just an economic decision they say. Until we put something about the profit motive the rape of the land and the death of morality is going to continue.
Profit is the highest motive in a consumerist society. Only the most profitable employees get hired or keep their jobs, nevermind years of service or productivity. Only the most profitable companies stock is worth more than their assets. Anything else gets not hired, fired, or bought out.
If we had listened to the scientists, if we had grown drought-resistant crops and used the water sustainably, we’d still be able to use that land. We knew this crisis was coming for decades, yet kept planting thirsty cash crops like corn and cotton. Our parents ignored the advice of those who knew better, and now we’ll pay the price in higher crop and energy prices. “Carpe Diem” was the word for decades, now we have inherited a ruined planet and ruinous debt. These farmers will be the first to feel the pain of the loss of our planet, but we are all due to suffer soon.
We need a new world order. We need to put something above ‘profit’, especially ’short-term profit’. Until the values of society and, most importantly, the government elites change from capitalism to something more sustainable we are still headed toward a ditch that very, very few of us will be able to climb out of.
We don’t have to do this with carbon and global warming. We will anyway. Infinite growth is the motto of a cancer cell and our host, the planet Earth, is nearly dead.