If you are like me, then you have been sleeping badly during these days of so much smoke. And if you sleep, the dreams have been just awful. The dead in one's life are always appearing and totally ignorant of their lost existence. A few weeks ago, I would wake up around 3 am and see in the night sky a moving moon with a sparkling Jupiter. These past three days, I woke up and saw nothing at all. And the morning was as miserable as night. Sometimes, I couldn't tell if it was fog or smoke—this was like a shepherd being between the dog and the wolf, between a friend and a fiend. And all the people on Twitter and on the news have to say about this terrifying situation is: The rain is coming. The real rain will clean all of this. We will get back to normal. That is it. There is nothing deeper to say about what clearly is the beginning of our end.
Nope. Also, let’s be really really clear: there was never a “smoke season” in Seattle until 5-6 years ago. I’ve lived here more than 40 years. Again, nope. pic.twitter.com/FGrc6ten4H— Charlie Harger (@KIROCharlie) October 20, 2022
The real rain Safe Seattle is waiting for:
What's left for the left? The best we can do is vote for those who still have a nervous system, who can sense that something is terribly wrong and something needs to be done. These people can be found on the SECB's cheat sheet. There really is nothing else but the counting of our precious votes.
Is this good news? "Seattle saw greenhouse gas emissions drop..." No, it is not. And as Marc Stiles of Puget Sound Business Journal well understands, this drop is "likely temporary." Stiles correctly attributes the decrease not to a political commitment to make the world livable (a pipe dream in our times), but to "the first year of the pandemic as lockdowns [that] kept thousands of people at home and hundreds of businesses shuttered."
And what is this? "Seattle recognized as best climate project at 2022 C40 Cities Bloomberg Philanthropies Awards." This "good news" ("Seattle, USA, is [united] to build a climate movement [that tackles] inequity with Seattle’s Green New Deal") arrived just in time to reveal its worthlessness to us.
It did rain this afternoon, but it was not the real rain, in either the common sense or the one desired by Safe Seattle. It was, at best, a drizzle that fizzled in under 30 minutes. I saw it come and go right away. The thick smoke brushed it off like dust on its shoulder.
Students, after spending two years away from school, you have now moved to the next movement of an apocalypse that will become your only reality: No going outside to do what your kind likes to do so much—play. You must stay in class all day. MyNorthwest: "Seattle-area schools cancel outdoor activities amid severe air quality."
NASA reports that its James Webb Space Telescope "has captured a lush, highly detailed landscape – the iconic Pillars of Creation – where new stars are forming within dense clouds of gas and dust." How am I seeing this? And on a planet (or, more closely, a form of the planet) that's clearly dying?
Webb Takes a Stunning, Star-Filled Portrait of the Pillars of Creation— Black Hole (@konstructivizm) October 20, 2022
I'm of the opinion that the universe is as knowable as it is unknowable. This is not a riddle. It's a fact drawn from two scientific observations: one, galaxies that are close to us are getting closer to us, and those that are far from us, are leaving us at a faster and faster rate. There will be a time when the light from those departing galaxies will not be able to cross the space generated by dark energy. So, those who might live in that distant, distant time will see a completely different universe. And no matter how much they know about it they will never be able to know what we know at this point in cosmic history—13.7 billion years after the universe came to be. Because those intelligent beings of a universe that's 20 billion or so years old can never see what we observed and verified, it will not exist. The thing that the mind has to grasp is that this non-existence is as present as what exists. This is not the being and not-being transition that Hegel describes as becoming in his abstruse Science of Logic. This is a total absence and a total presence that cannot be bridged—an unknowable and knowable knowable only to those presently turned to the future. And there very well may be an awake animal in the past that saw unknowns that will never be known to us awake in what the greatest philosopher of the 20th century, Alfred North Whitehead, called our "cosmic epoch." Death is something that can be seen but not experienced.
What about poor Truss? What? She is already gone! The head of lettuce even beat her time in 10 Downing Street. What to do? Maybe now is the time to introduce you to this Zimbabwean Brit, Munya, who is rocking TikTok and Twitter.
What should we do in these last days? Follow Sade's advice and "Cherish the Day." Indeed, "I cherish the day," even if it's filled with all of this fucking smoke.