Friday, March 31, 2017

The Monster Border Wall & What Would Edward Abbey do ???

“It’s the biggest man-made structure I’ve ever seen … God, it’s huge”
"A couple on the run are confronted by the forbidding sight of a giant wall dividing the US and Mexico. It’s the creation of British director-producer Gareth Edwards, who was also responsible for the impressive visual effects in his 2010 sci-fi film, Monsters." BBC ARTS
Image by BBC from the film - "Monster"

Image from William Graham
The Sci-Fi film's plot begins  after a NASA deep-space probe (sent to verify the existence of extraterrestrial life within the solar system) crash lands in Mexico, then extraterrestrial life forms from some sort of seeds or spores, only to spread throughout the country of Mexico and along the United States border region, leading to a major emergency quarantine of the northern half of Mexico. Both USA and Mexican troops battle to contain the creatures, and a huge wall stretching along the border supposedly to keep the USA protected from the invading infection. Except the gigantic border wall doesn't really keep the alien monsters out. The BBC posted a video and posed the question, Did sci-fi film Monsters inspire Donald Trump’s Mexican wall? , but that's anyone's speculative guess. This border wall topic is a heated debate subject debate right now. The film's gargantuant wall is clearly an impossible realistic feat, but like the fictional Sci-Fi film's wall, nothing will totally keep out any humans who live life in our world's desperately poorer countries. But such a barrier has also exposed other negative consequences, migrating wildlife as seen in the photograph offered by Biologist William Graham in a recent post. Obviously it's a major barrier to the larger creatures like Deer, Pronghorn Antelope, Javelina, Jaguars, Coatimundi, Mexican Grey Wolves, etc. You can read Bill's recent post: (HERE)

Image Wikipedia - Edward Abbey

Image  Wikipedia
But now how would the iconic ecowarrior, Edward Abbey, feel about a border wall to keep other humans out of his beloved southwest ? He  coined the phrase in one of his books which used the term, "Monkey Wrenching," which has been influential in inspiring most of the modern day eco-activism movements to employ a tactic of sabotage and destruction of construction equipment, or any other type of sabotage, civil disobedience activism, or other law-breaking to justify preserving wilderness, wild spaces and ecosystems. To be honest it's hard to say what direction he would take. He wasn't exactly happy about the effect of industrial nations increasing their population of more human beings (irrespective of race or ethnic origin) which he considered the most major threat to our planet Earth. This too has inspired a radical scientific movement lately of human beings not being exceptional and the need to find ways of reducing the population of even more human beings who are viewed as the problem. Humans are viewed as the enemy of Earth. Of course  eco-activists generally do not consider themselves as part of that problem. Actually eco-activism is also equally at fault for Earth ruin. But what were Edward Abbey's thoughts on either legal or illegal immigration ???
"It occurs to some of us that perhaps ever-continuing industrial and population growth is not the true road to human happiness, that simple gross quantitative increase of this kind creates only more pain, dislocation, confusion and misery. In which case it might be wise for us as American citizens to consider calling a halt to the mass influx of even more millions of hungry, ignorant, unskilled, and culturally-morally-genetically impoverished people. At least until we have brought our own affairs into order. Especially when these uninvited millions bring with them an alien mode of life which—let us be honest about this—is not appealing to the majority of Americans. Why not? Because we prefer democratic government, for one thing; because we still hope for an open, spacious, uncrowded, and beautiful—yes, beautiful!—society, for another. The alternative, in the squalor, cruelty, and corruption of Latin America, is plain for all to see."
"One Life at a Time, Please" by Edward Abbey 1988, p. 43. (Source)
That's not exactly consistent with the newer enlightened ideological view many of today's eco-activists hold to lately. While they often will side with bashing humankind in general and blaming them for a ruined planet, this siding with border immigration (legal or illegal) has more to do with acquiring a new strategic ideological tool so as to prove whose side has the imaginary moral high ground. In any case, what's very interesting about the environmental folks who like reading Edward Abbey writings is that you can often find them constantly apologizing for many of his views on various subjects. He did have a rough and crusty manner about him, but at least he was consistent in his beliefs and sometimes even the natural world didn't escape his harsh views. 

"Like that other typical desert plant the tumbleweed, tamarisk is not native to the American west. It comes from North Africa, and as is the way with other exotics, has spread like a plague. Clogging Desert water courses and driving out the willow, the cottonwood, the hackberry and the boxelder"
I actually agree with these sentiments, but rather than blame the Tamarisk, the true blame is placed squarely on human ignorance and stupidity. Edward Abbey always seemed to be championing things being native and pristine. But he was also fond of the word "wilderness" to describe beautiful untouched landscape where no other humans were. Abbey himself seemed to be a bit of a loner and so I guess the idea of wilderness was appealing. But wilderness really is a white European concept. The Native Americans never really viewed the land as wild, but rather their home. They made their living off it. It's hard to really say for sure whether or not Abbey would change his tough opinion about the present debate on a border wall. He'd be conflicted between his dislike of legal or illegal immigration, exotic non-native wild things and love for the native ecosystems of the west. Being a loner, I don't think the type of human would really matter in the end. Even still, he may well have had leanings towards some type of scientific eugenics program or government sponsored population control. An early indication of his feelings on the matter came in 1963, where he summed up his feelings this way:
"According to the morning newspaper, the population of America will reach 267 million by 2000 AD. An increase of forty million, or about one-sixth, in only seventeen years! And the racial composition of the population will also change considerably: the white birth rate is about sixty per thousand females, the Negro rate eighty-three per thousand, and the Hispanic rate ninety-six per thousand. 
 Am I a racist? I guess I am. I certainly do not wish to live in a society dominated by blacks, or Mexicans, or Orientals. Look at Africa, at Mexico, at Asia.
Garrett Hardin [the author of Tragedy of the Commons] compares our situation to an overcrowded lifeboat in a sea of drowning bodies. If we take more aboard, the boat will be swamped and we’ll all go under. Militarize our borders. The lifeboat is listing."
Image from the film Monsters - BBC

Wow, but those were his own words and feelings at the time. This was the time of civil rights movements in 1963. Most of the radical environmental organizations who use his anarchist views on monkeywrenching as a sort of handbook for strategic ecoactivist  success generally gloss over or hide completely these types of his other views. To be fair, even during the early slave trade thru the Social Darinism days, Christendom's Churches were in full support of 1800s Imperialistic ambitions for whatever conquering European nation they were citizens of back then. In the end, a lack of borderwall won't save Nature. Nature has been in trouble long before this controversy. But it's a tool now being used by one ideology attempting to score points over another. Same is true if there is a borderwall with strict regulations on immigration, people will still move into all industrial countries (whether USA or European Union) no matter what, believing the marketing propaganda that the grass is greener there than back in their previous homeland. They basically are placing their hopes on nothing more than that marketed iconic dream and neither political ideology really has anything of value to offer them. They'll be equally exploited by both sides when it's all said and done.

Below are some interesting musings about both people and wildlife along the USA-Mexico Borderlands if you're really interested & their web links
Image - Sonoran Desert Researchers

The irreplaceable riches of our borderlands
The Alantic: On the Border


  1. You know, I despise Trump. Didn't vote for him. What he is doing to our country is an abomination. I just hope we can REMOVE his infection in 2020, but I have a feeling that he and his family, like alien pods, are replicating (duplicating?) themselves and by then, he will have manufactured a domestic terrorist attack and we'll ALL be living under martial law. Frankly, I think the WALL is to keep Americans inside! (IMHO)

    1. Well, for me, it doesn't matter who is running what. Democracy will always be about 51% vrs 49%. Nobody is ever going to be happy, content or feel secure anymore from this point forward. Best thing people as individuals and family heads can do is properly care for their families any way possible. Mostly it's about making a fair living no matter where or what country you live in and spending time (not just quality time) with your children. People have been marketed to death about his American Dream or E.U. Utopian Dream and every year the myth keeps getting further and further out of reach. Even here in Sweden there are people from poorer countries who acquired some kind of flier promising making €€€€ for planting trees or picking fruit in Sweden and it was a sham. Just like the States, no difference really, despite the usual propaganda to the contrary.

      But on the subject of the wall ? Wall or no Wall, nature and humans will still get the shaft either way and by both political ideologies

  2. By the way, NOBODY, NOBODY, NOBODY voted for Steve Bannon and he is the one who wants to "deconstruct" our government and society and is putting into motion the MORONS to do so.
    Just my 2 cents worth...

    1. "Steve Bannon"

      I don't even know who that is.


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