The Keystone Science

The Keystone Science

by Bernard Corden

Since the early 1970s the holy trinity of democracy with its fundamental tenets of liberty, equality and fraternity has been progressively eroded and usurped by a new world order with a repressive focus on deregulation, diminution and privatisation. In more recent years this emasculation has been expedited via big data, artificial intelligence, machine learning and supra surveillance. It enables the vulture culture of casino capitalists to strip the remnants of rotten flesh from the dead carcass of neoliberalism to maximise profit and socialise loss under the manifestation of austerity with an otiose pursuit of perfection. The positivism or scientism with its repetitive and futile attempts to square the circle extirpates collectivism, communities of practice and destroys incidental learning. 111

This objectivist and dehumanising approach intensifies individualism and has created a resurgence of atavistic accident theory. It is exacerbated by binary judgement and fundamentalist ideologies such as zero harm with a myopic focus on rational decision making and black box behaviourist psychology, which ultimately blames the victim……………Forget your perfect offering, there is a crack in everything that’s how the light gets in. A recent world inequality report recognises that escalating disparity is generating political, social and economic insecurity. It erodes self-esteem and dignity with significantly escalating deaths of despair from homicide or suicide, which includes chronic alcohol abuse and drug overdoses. Over the past three decades it has triggered countless premature deaths and created a rising mortality rate and psychosocial disorders amongst the lumpenproletariat. 1216

Modern nations, corporations, hierarchies and industrial civilisation do not serve workplace health, safety or welfare effectively. The dour Taylorism and binary mentality preordains the blame dichotomy. It generates increasing conflict, adversarial legislation and insufferable bureaucracy with an inevitable quest for a subordinate scapegoat. A sophisticated vision that recognises interdependency of endogenous and exogenous factors and symbiotic relationships is required using the keystone science of ecology. It offers a prudent and ecologically sustainable alternative to current economic models that are nothing more than a gigantic festering Ponzi scheme. This is underpinned by pyramid selling, aggressive telemarketing and unreasonable expectations of quantitative exponential growth, which is doomed to a catastrophic meltdown, anomie and despair. 1723

Growth is a fundamental characteristic of life and any society or economy that fails to develop will eventually perish. Natural growth is never linear or unrestricted and an inchoate ecosystem propagates according to its stage of development. The organisms initially experience rapid expansion with colonisation of the territory followed by truncated growth, maturity, decline, decay and succession, whereby elements are released for restoration to rejuvenate the ecosystem. It is a qualitative process that enhances quality of life and contrasts with the conventional economic structure of unrestrained quantitative growth fuelled by rampant unfettered neoliberalism and its chimera of trickle-down economics. 2425

Qualitative growth aligns with a systemic view of life, which advocates ecological sustainability via iterative and interdependent processes. This recognises patterns of relationships and emergent properties. It embraces a multifaceted concept of quality that integrates objective quantitative components and subjective qualitative elements. Human activity systems including economies, societies, ecosystems and corresponding issues such as safety, health, welfare and security are quite complex. They cannot be simply reduced and evaluated sufficiently using a fiscal coefficient such as gross domestic product or a discrete variable of aggregated lost time injuries. Quantities such as mass or energy can be measured and the whole is equal to the sum its components. However, emergent properties such as health, contentment, stress or creativity, which arise from processes and interdependent relationships are often synergistic or antagonistic and should be mapped. Indeed, if growth is determined solely via a narrow fiscal paradigm, sustainable development becomes a fallacy. 2631

Ecoliteracy embraces cultural, social, ethical and spiritual dimensions and the power of language, especially hermeneutics and the enchantment of poetics can never be underestimated. Only a foolish person would dismiss the cultural influences of Shakespeare, Montaigne, Maupassant, Wordsworth, Frost or Auden. Transcending the solipsism of a bilious decadent culture is a collective struggle and requires pattern based leadership. Much like democracy it is a dynamic process not a static condition. It is becoming rather than being and easily lost but never really won. The foundations have been established by many indigenous cultures, which enables a functional ecocentric culture to flourish. This is reinforced by numerous notable academics including Rachel Carson, James Lovelock and Fritjof Capra. It also aligns with the concepts of transdiciplinarity and social sense making…….Two roads diverged in a yellow wood. 3246

The road not taken – Robert Frost

https://www.poetryfoundation.org/poems/44272/the-road-not-taken

Two roads diverged in a yellow wood,

And sorry I could not travel both

And be one traveler, long I stood

And looked down one as far as I could

To where it bent in the undergrowth;

Then took the other, as just as fair,

And having perhaps the better claim,

Because it was grassy and wanted wear;

Though as for that the passing there

Had worn them really about the same,

And both that morning equally lay

In leaves no step had trodden black.

Oh, I kept the first for another day!

Yet knowing how way leads on to way,

I doubted if I should ever come back.

I shall be telling this with a sigh

Somewhere ages and ages hence:

Two roads diverged in a wood, and I—

I took the one less traveled by,

And that has made all the difference.

Poetry is when an emotion has found its thought and the thought has found words

Robert Frost

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