BOOK REVIEWS – Ecological Disaster Vs. Paranoia

BOOK REVIEWS – Ecological Disaster Vs. Paranoia

Ocean’s End: Travels Through Endangered Seas
Colin Woodard, 2000, Basic Books

Basic Books
10 East 53rd Street
New York, NY, 10022-5299

From tropical Pacific atolls to Antarctic ice sheets, from the nearby shores of
the Gulf of Mexico, to the more distant shores of the Black Sea. And other
places, too.

The shit’s on, folks.

We’re starting to actually mess up for real, that grandest feature of the entire
planet’s surface: The World Ocean.

After reading this one, I’m reminded of the cliché from Star Wars, “I’ve got a
bad feeling about this.”

For real.

And if you think this sort of thing won’t bother you, as you brave the morning
commute downtown, a thousand miles away from the nearest body of salt water,
don’t be so cocksure of yourself, ok?

The ocean girdles the globe, and the globe is where you live, like it or not.
The planet has exactly ONE ecosphere, and the World Ocean takes up the lion’s
share of that ecosphere. Things happening far beyond the blue horizon have
acquired a nasty ability to make their presence known in places far far away
from where the troubles are brewing.

The rules of the game are being subtly, insidiously, changed even as we struggle
to understand the OLD rules, and they’re not changing for the better, that’s for
sure.

Colin has managed to write a very INSTRUCTIONAL book, all the while managing to
remain completely unpreachy or strident. “Just the facts, ma’am.”

Ocean’s End is a gripping read, and shows clearly how decisions made by elements
as disparate as chemical factories in Europe and corn farmers in Iowa can affect
the WHOLE planet and ramify and reverberate across lands that the factory
managers and farmhands may not even know exist. Even as they continue with their
woefully short-sighted plans to further and increase their own local goals.

And it’s for that very reason that I’ve got a bad feeling about this. Persuading
folks in distant States and Sovereign Nations to take reduce their own incomes,
stores of food, or what have you, is going to be pretty much impossible until
the catastrophes in the making have an actual, PERSONAL effect upon them.

At which time, it’s likely as not going to be too late to do pretty much of
anything except to sit back and watch as the whole sordid story plays itself out
upon a global stage.

Our grandchildren and their grandchildren deserve better.

Brrrrrr.

How To Get Anything ON Anybody: Book II
Lee Lapin, 1991, ISECO Inc.

ISECO, Inc.
2228 El Camino Real #349
San Mateo CA 94403

Also distributed by:

Paladin Press
7077 Winchester Circle
Boulder, CO 80301
www.paladin-press.com

Well, in these fast-moving days of technological change, the copyright date
should give you a bit of pause, yes?

Well, not exactly, no.

Even if the stuff in this book is dated, the fact that this stuff EXISTS at all
is well worth your time to check into. And, knowing how much that technical
doojiggery can be “improved” in a decade, you just might wanna start being a
trifle careful with what’s left of your privacy.

People don’t want to think about the kinds of things detailed in How To…, but
whether they’re thinking about it or not, somewhere someone is setting up some
kind of devilment to pry into their life, whether they (or perhaps YOU) like it
or not.

Certainly not the most cheerful read, but well worth your time.

A great “starter” book on this evil subject.

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