Our extinction was always inevitable. It's just coming faster than we'd like


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It's time for all of us to accept the fact that we're not going to survive the mass extinction that's already underway. Humans will not survive another century.

Unless a billionaire has a plan to live underground for millennia, and conveniently decommissioned all nuclear plants and stored the waste safely, humans are already extinct.

Yes, we did it to ourselves.

I'm sorry, too.

I've been screaming about this since the 80's. No one gave a f&** then, and no one does, now.

We're going extinct. We need to deal with that fact.


If I understand stellar physics, the whole solar system is halfway to going extinct in a nova explosion.

If I understand Fermi's paradox, all civilizations likely suicide themselves.

If I understand the 2nd Law of Thermodynamics, our whole universe came into being with an expiration date already set.

But I'm thinking dinner and a movie tonight, so I'll put off the end of all things for at least another day.
:D


As long as it takes 40 years im good.


I just want to survive getting through my forties...


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Orville Redenbacher wrote:
As long as it takes 40 years im good.

There's a reasonable chance things are going to get bad before then. I thought I'd have a decent chance of not getting hit by the worst of it, but I'm less optimistic than I used to be.


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I'm not worried, Dwayne Johnson will save us.


captain yesterday wrote:
I'm not worried, Dwayne Johnson will save us.

I'm thinking Mother Nature might do a re-write of the script before they start filming though.


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I'll settle for Chris Hemsworth, Chris Evan, RDJ, Mark Ruffalo, Elizabeth Olsen, Brie Larson, Benedict Cumberbatch and whom ever they cast as Wonder Man to save us.


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After I see the next avengers movie I'm down.

RPG Superstar 2015 Top 8

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Mother Earth will live on for probably a good 5 billion years until the Sun ETA devours the inner planets, with or without us (and indeed she'll happily stamp us out sooner than later if our presence keeps harming her). Until then...

Even if and of course when we go extinct, our ashes and bone will feed the earth (well, those of us who go for green burial at least, but that's a subject for another time), any energies within us rejoin with the greater cosmos, and we remain part of the cycle. Yes, our structures will crumble, and new life will grow around them. Our rail trails will become deer (or whatever horned thing evolves from it) paths, our skyrises hollowed out hidey holes for rock doves. When bonobos become sentient or cats grow thumbs, or whatever self aware creature emerges after the next great disaster (human caused or otherwise) and finds our remains in the rock and ash, they will learn from us. Hopefully they learn from our wisdom, but most especially from our mistakes.

And even when our Mother Earth is consumed by the sun, who knows how the remaining energies and masses feed whatever comes next. All will end. And all will begin again, just as the universe itself impossibly did eons and eons ago.

We are but a small part of a greater cycle. And yet we are here, for the time that we are, and make, even if infinitesimal, ripples within the cycle of the universe. I choose to see that as like the sand mandala--beautiful in its instant of creation, and all the more so because it dissipates so quickly.

We are all we have while we have it. We can choose to make that a good thing.


DeathQuaker wrote:

Mother Earth will live on for probably a good 5 billion years until the Sun goes nova, with or without us (and indeed she'll happily stamp us out sooner than later if our presence keeps harming her). Until then...

Even if and of course when we go extinct, our ashes and bone will feed the earth (well, those of us who go for green burial at least, but that's a subject for another time), any energies within us rejoin with the greater cosmos, and we remain part of the cycle. Yes, our structures will crumble, and new life will grow around them. Our rail trails will become deer (or whatever horned thing evolves from it) paths, our skyrises hollowed out hidey holes for rock doves. When bonobos become sentient or cats grow thumbs, or whatever self aware creature emerges after the next great disaster (human caused or otherwise) and finds our remains in the rock and ash, they will ask from us. Hopefully they learn from our wisdom, but most especially from our mistakes.

And even when our Mother Earth is consumed by the sun, who knows how the remaining energies and masses feed whatever comes next. All will end. And all will begin again, just as the universe itself impossibly did eons and eons ago.

We are but a small part of a greater cycle. And yet we are here, for the time that we are, and make, even if infinitesimal, ripples within the cycle of the universe. I choose to see that as like the sand mandala--beautiful in its instant of creation, and all the more so because it dissipates so quickly.

We are all we have while we have it. We can choose to make that a good thing.

Well, yeah. In the long run and all.

I'd still rather not burn out quite so soon and leave as much destruction in our wake as we seem to be doing.


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"The moment of the rose and the moment of the yew-tree
Are of equal duration."

T.S. Eliot

RPG Superstar 2015 Top 8

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Well I was 3 years old when 3-2-1 Contact explained it to me (and my mom had to explain to my tearful self that 5 billion years was a REALLY LONG TIME AWAY), so I beg forgiveness for the inaccuracy. :) I might still have the edit window... there. Now can we continue to wax philosophical? (Thank you quibblemuch.)


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Betty White will save us.


She'll bake us some cakes and cookies. :)


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Removed my previous post, for the sake of DeathQuaker's dignity.


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captain yesterday wrote:
Betty White will save us.

That reminds me... I need to thank her for being a friend.

RPG Superstar 2015 Top 8

John Napier 698 wrote:
She'll bake us some cakes and cookies. :)

Having watched her as Sue Ann Nivens on Mary Tyler Moore, I'm not sure that's the way she'll save us. :) But I like the sentiment.

(And thank you :) )


No problem.

Dark Archive

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There are ways around.


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Huh. Well if the world's ending I should at least finish the Expanse.

Shadow Lodge

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In seriousness, I don't think things are quite this apocalyptic yet. If only because humans are a pretty durable and stubborn and persistent species. We've found ways to live in a lot of the most inhospitable parts of our planet. I'm sure there will be enough of us who will find ways to survive whatever's to come that the species will not quite be in danger of complete extinction.

No doubt it won't be exceptionally fun for the rest of us, if we don't find some way to head off the harshest consequences rather quickly, but I think we'll manage, as a whole. We might be knocked back a few hundred years of progress, but maybe we'll have a bit better sense about it and things will go better with a do-over in some regards.

Or maybe not. Who knows.


Orthos wrote:

In seriousness, I don't think things are quite this apocalyptic yet. If only because humans are a pretty durable and stubborn and persistent species. We've found ways to live in a lot of the most inhospitable parts of our planet. I'm sure there will be enough of us who will find ways to survive whatever's to come that the species will not quite be in danger of complete extinction.

No doubt it won't be exceptionally fun for the rest of us, if we don't find some way to head off the harshest consequences rather quickly, but I think we'll manage, as a whole. We might be knocked back a few hundred years of progress, but maybe we'll have a bit better sense about it and things will go better with a do-over in some regards.

Or maybe not. Who knows.

I agree that actual extinction is unlikely - though certainly possible, depending on how far we push the climate before we can't do any more damage and on how crazy things get in the last struggles to hold on to civilization. Add a nuclear exchange to the final wars over resources and things look pretty bleak.

Knocking us back a few hundred years of progress is also going to knock us back to the population levels we had then, since we'll lack the resources to support more. That's billions dead.


I'm still hopeful the next round of Avengers can save us. The Justice League...less so.


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First things first. Mother Earth is a ball of rock. The Earth is not sentient. It is not going to retaliate against us. Lovelock was wrong, thunderously so.

WE determine what happens next. And no matter what we do, some tough bastards will find a way to survive it. Yes, this includes nuclear war. Let's not give ourselves too much credit here.

What remains a constant is the desire to see the world as ending, tainted, corrupted, dying, etc. We always have, quite simply. Extrapolate on any data you like, and you will reach some kind of oblivion, whether it's all of humanity employed to handle telephone switchboards, to huge numbers of super predators. Add in a bit of political ambition and you get hysteria, like the oceans rising 70 meters in 50 years, or any of a thousand lurid points.

Will it end? Certainly. But we can delay that. We can work toward or against survival, and a decent world to live in. Something isn't worthless because it ends. I think Asimov said it best: A lot of good things can happen in a billion years.


Sissyl wrote:
First things first. Mother Earth is a ball of rock. The Earth is not sentient. It is not going to retaliate against us. Lovelock was wrong, thunderously so.

It's a metaphor. Nobody here's actually talking about a sentient planet.

Sissyl wrote:
WE determine what happens next. And no matter what we do, some tough bastards will find a way to survive it. Yes, this includes nuclear war. Let's not give ourselves too much credit here.

Indeed, we do determine what happens. Glad to see you've stopped writing off anthropogenic global warming. :)

Sadly, what it seems we've determined is a catastrophic change to the global climate.

Sissyl wrote:

What remains a constant is the desire to see the world as ending, tainted, corrupted, dying, etc. We always have, quite simply. Extrapolate on any data you like, and you will reach some kind of oblivion, whether it's all of humanity employed to handle telephone switchboards, to huge numbers of super predators. Add in a bit of political ambition and you get hysteria, like the oceans rising 70 meters in 50 years, or any of a thousand lurid points.

Will it end? Certainly. But we can delay that. We can work toward or against survival, and a decent world to live in. Something isn't worthless because it ends. I think Asimov said it best: A lot of good things can happen in a billion years.

I'm not worried about a billion years. I'm worried about the next few decades, because that will determine what happens over the next centuries.


thejeff wrote:
Sissyl wrote:
First things first. Mother Earth is a ball of rock. The Earth is not sentient. It is not going to retaliate against us. Lovelock was wrong, thunderously so.
It's a metaphor. Nobody here's actually talking about a sentient planet.

I would be! I like sentient planets. Ego the Living Planet and Mogo are cool!

Silver Crusade

thejeff wrote:


Knocking us back a few hundred years of progress is also going to knock us back to the population levels we had then, since we'll lack the resources to support more. That's billions dead.

There is also the major problem that we've already used the easily available oil, metals, etc etc.

If we manage to maintain the knowledge that we now have (or most of it) we might be able to reestablish a civilization again with what remains. But if we're knocked back "to the stone age" then a strong argument can be made that we'll never be able to recreate an industrial civilization again (or a civilization much past the stone age).

Silver Crusade

thejeff wrote:
Indeed, we do determine what happens.

Or, perhaps, have ALREADY determined what WILL happen. There is a non zero chance that we've pretty much already doomed civilization and/or the human race.

Sometimes I'm glad that I'm an old fart and not too likely to live long enough to see the worst of it :-(


Sissyl wrote:

First things first. Mother Earth is a ball of rock. The Earth is not sentient. It is not going to retaliate against us. Lovelock was wrong, thunderously so.

WE determine what happens next. And no matter what we do, some tough bastards will find a way to survive it. Yes, this includes nuclear war. Let's not give ourselves too much credit here.

What remains a constant is the desire to see the world as ending, tainted, corrupted, dying, etc. We always have, quite simply. Extrapolate on any data you like, and you will reach some kind of oblivion, whether it's all of humanity employed to handle telephone switchboards, to huge numbers of super predators. Add in a bit of political ambition and you get hysteria, like the oceans rising 70 meters in 50 years, or any of a thousand lurid points.

Will it end? Certainly. But we can delay that. We can work toward or against survival, and a decent world to live in. Something isn't worthless because it ends. I think Asimov said it best: A lot of good things can happen in a billion years.

I politely disagree Sissyl-sama!


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The last time I checked, Earth is scheduled to lose all macroscopic life around 800 million years from now, at which point the Sun will have heated up to the point that the sort of photosynthesis needed by plants that life forms like us depend on for food will become impossible. I might be off by 100 million years one way or the other, but I am pretty sure that the number is slightly under a billion years.

That is when humanity would become extinct, if we don't manage to survive that event by doing something really clever or kill ourselves off sooner by doing something really stupid.


I guess I'm in the minority about sentient planets like Ego and Mogo. then.


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Thomas Seitz wrote:
I guess I'm in the minority about sentient planets like Ego and Mogo. then.

They're pretty awesome.

I wouldn't want to live on Ego though. It's known to absorb sentient settlers.

Mogo seems a much nicer place to live.


The post apocalypse might be worth it if I can communicate telepathically with my dog like Don Johnson.


I dunno about telepathic communication, but if we all get magic I'll be down for it.


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In the 1340's and -50's, millions of people died of the bubonic plague. Black Death ended civilizations. It didn't wipe out humanity completely, because humans are tough and humans are creative and humans are resilient. But it ended civilizations.

The bubonic plague was a human-made catastrophe. We didn't mean to do it, but that goes for most human-made catastrophes. If humanity had been smarter, we could have averted the whole thing by not opening any transcontinental trade routes, or nipped it in the bud by quarantining the infected, or, if humanity was truly brilliant, we could have used the antibiotics that modern civilization depends on for such things. Instead we carried blessed talismans to ward against the plague and went out to find witches we burnt in the hopes that God wouldn't punish us any further.

Humanity wasn't smart enough to solve the problem we were given, at the time.

Climate change stands to kill billions, if humanity doesn't stop it. It'll end civilizations. I doubt it'll wipe humanity out completely, because humans are tough and humans are creative and humans are resilient. But it could very well end our global civilization.

Climate change is a human-made catastrophe. We didn't mean to do it, but here we are. If we'd been smarter, we could have averted the whole thing - if the money and incentives had been there in the 80's to develop green technology. We could have nipped it in the bud in the 90's, or in the 00's, or even in the 10's. We could have avoided the worst of it. Instead we launched misinformation campaigns for our own personal benefit, and went out to find witches to burn.

Humanity wasn't smart enough to solve the problem we were given, at the time.

The difference between 1340 and 2019, the difference between 1980 and 2019, the difference between 2010 and 2019, is that we humans have gotten a hell of a lot smarter.

The problem we're faced with is vast. It's really, stupidly vast. But we aren't squaring off against it with horses and castles. We're squaring off against it with High Technology, with the stuff of science fiction. And, most importantly, we're squaring off against it with the knowledge that the next ten years will see more technological advances than all the years preceding them.

Problems that looked straight up impossible in 2010 look as trivial to us as an outbreak of the bubonic plague looked to our 2010 counterparts. By 2030 genetic engineering will have really come into it's own, asteroid mining will be, if not commonplace, at least a tenable proposition, I'd be surprised if anyone in America is relying on fossil fuels for electricity in the year 2030; if the government doesn't update it's grid a la the "Green New Deal" the private sector'll have obsoleted government-sold electricity entirely; it already makes economic sense to solar panel your house if you plan on living there for any length of time. Hell, we might well even have an artificial superintelligence that makes our greatest minds look like chimps that can solve our greatest problems as casually as we scratch where it itches.

I'm not starry-eyed looking at the future; if anything I'm mad anxious. Because there are plenty of problems that looked as impossible in 1340 as they did in 2010 and do in 2019. I hope and strive that humanity will grow smart enough to solve our problems.

But I don't think that our extinction is inevitable, or that it ever was. If anyone finds out a way to live forever, it'll be a human. We're the smartest things that have ever been. We're tough and we're creative and we're resilient.

And for the love of all things holy, folks, solar panel your houses, and if you're replacing a car make it an electric one. Societal change starts with each of us.

Orthos, Post-Singularity wrote:
There are ways around.

Expanding on this, because a technological singularity will change everything and it's important to know about and vitally vitally vitally important that we as a civilization don't mess it up. Here's a good article for the layperson.


*briefly scans Advocate's response*

So what you're saying is... we need some sort of talisman to ward off the wrath of God. Gotcha! I'm on it!

*rends garments, produces board, strikes self in head while chanting*


Asmodeus' Advocate wrote:

In the 1340's and -50's, millions of people died of the bubonic plague. Black Death ended civilizations. It didn't wipe out humanity completely, because humans are tough and humans are creative and humans are resilient. But it ended civilizations.

Name one.


Xenocrat wrote:
Asmodeus' Advocate wrote:

In the 1340's and -50's, millions of people died of the bubonic plague. Black Death ended civilizations. It didn't wipe out humanity completely, because humans are tough and humans are creative and humans are resilient. But it ended civilizations.

Name one.

Who was Gavin Douglas.


I didn't realize we were playing Jeopardy for the well being of the planet...


The Uninhabitable Earth

The title of this book - released today! - pretty much says all you need to know.

If you want meticulously documented details on how bad it gets how soon, read the book.

Spoiler:
No less than 100,000,000 climate refugees by 2100

He also states the the year 2100 will be a minimum of +2.0°C

What can I say... the guy knows his facts of climate doom. A cynicism you can despair over.
:D

Dark Archive

Quark Blast wrote:

The Uninhabitable Earth

The title of this book - released today! - pretty much says all you need to know.

If you want meticulously documented details on how bad it gets how soon, read the book.

** spoiler omitted **

I'll just wait for the Al Gore movie version.


And the inevitable big-budget blockbuster disaster movie to follow.


Goin' For A Troll wrote:
And the inevitable big-budget blockbuster disaster movie to follow.

Starring Dwayne Johnson, and Betty White (featuring Johnny Depp as Al Gore).


Xenocrat wrote:
Asmodeus' Advocate wrote:

In the 1340's and -50's, millions of people died of the bubonic plague. Black Death ended civilizations. It didn't wipe out humanity completely, because humans are tough and humans are creative and humans are resilient. But it ended civilizations.

Name one.

Well, one could make the argument that our modern civilization is the same civilization that began somewhere on the African savanna way back in the day, and that no civilization has ever ended - if that’s how we’re defining civilization, then there’s never been and hopefully will never be a civilization ending calamity.

But if we consider, say, pre and post fall of the Roman Empire Europe as different civilizations, one’d be hard pressed to argue that pre and post Black Death Europe are the same civilization.


I hope that Jason Statham gets a cameo and then the entire MCU shows up to save the world.


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Thomas Seitz wrote:
I hope that Jason Statham gets a cameo and then the entire MCU shows up to save the world.

NO Jason Statham!!


Fine. How about David Tennant then? Or Matt Smith?

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