Bare Bones Biology 288 – Why Don’t We?

Why Don’t we just Fix our Common Biological Problem as we have fixed so many problems in the past?

Good question. I have tried to initiate that discussion.

First I thought people did not understand our common problem, so I wrote quite a bit about the biology of Life on Earth. The response I got was: “What should we do to solve the problem?” So I told us what to do. Obvious really, as the problem is easily demonstrable — overgrowth, overgrazing our food source. What we should do is stop the overgrowth.

Evidently this was not obvious to my readers.

Next I thought it might be “my fault,” not explaining the biology clearly enough. This seemed logical because there is some truth to it, and many, many, especially younger people were happy to tell me I am/was presenting the information incorrectly – that I should explain the problem without talking about anything negative – I should only talk about the up side of our communal problem and never mention the down side. An interesting challenge, so I tried for a while – but —

The down side IS the problem, and there is no point discussing the up side of a problem if we truly want to fix it. That’s just one more way to ignore the problem while at the same time denying any responsibility for helping to fix it.

And anyhow the response remained the same: “What should we do?”

Which is not useful unless you intend to do it.

So then I got very specific and whenever anyone asked that question I said “Talk about it among ourselves. Study the system you are trying to fix and discuss solutions. Come over to the clubhouse and let’s talk about solutions.”

Because I have faith that – if we could bring ourselves to the point of thinking and talking about the facts of Life – what the Biosystem needs to sustain a healthy (for us) balance among her essential functions that are threatened by our overgrowth – if we were to begin discussing these issues and stop fussing over the displacement activities the corposystem gives us to talk about that won’t help because they are not about de-growth, not about fixing the cause of the problem – I feel sure we would then begin to modify our world views, and that would drive us to behave in ways that would address the real, fact-based problem. Some of that is now happening, but it is still our social system, our corposystem environment, that prevents us talking about the problem that is most threatening to the corposystem itself: the unbalancing of the checks and balances that maintain the welfare of both the corposystem and the Biosystem.

This kind of cyclic re-enforcement of itself is built into the nature of systems. If a system cannot maintain itself, it falls apart. Thus the function of a system is to maintain its own special properties. The special property of our corposystem is growth – growth for fun, fame and profit – and that is why the corposystem ethic will not permit us to talk about the many possible ways in which we might save ourselves by implementing de-growth. We can’t even think about it, because the corposystem ethic has become our own ethic.

And so it looks like the only thing I can do to help solve our common problem, other than to jump right into the middle of all that competition (been there, done that,


I’m pretty good at it, but it won’t fix our relationship with the Biosystem and would therefore be a waste of my energy), is to give us, we the people — those of us who have the courage to challenge our own corposystem ethic – to give us information and topics for discussion that are not d

isplacement activities and that could, within limits imposed by factual reality, make things better rather than worse.

That’s what book 25, as yet unpublished, is all about, and wouldn’t that be a nice holiday gift for me, if it were finished. Maybe by my birthday?

This is Bare Bones Biology, a production of


A copy of the podcast can be downloaded at:

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