Okay, my copy of "Paradise Lost" (yes, the Milton poem) is in storage, and the one online doesn't really entice me enough to read it. It starts out with Satan, who like Christopher Columbus was on a quest for the Garden of Eden. And, more than anything else, if I were asked to teach the stuff I'd end up in the sorry situation in which you see the professor in the "Animal House" movie:
At any rate, there is a piece now up on Counterpunch titled "Paradise Lost," and it seems pretty straightforward in its depiction of what happened. The summary of the Camp Fire of November 2018, which burned Paradise, California to the ground, and of the future devastation it foreshadows is also straightforward:
The climate/weather factors that led to the Camp Fire are undeniable. Severe drought, combined with higher temperatures and of course wind events, are part of the changing climate pattern attributed to climate change. There will undoubtedly be future “Paradises” across the West.
Maybe the whole West Coast will burn, and the roads will all be jammed with people trying to leave for the coast. You know, like when the father-and-son tag team of Cormac McCarthy's The Road tried to leave for the coast. OK what was that guy's name in Milton's "Paradise Lost" again?
As a utopian dreamer, I have to imagine that some kind of Garden of Eden is possible, except that all of us nice Westernized first-world imperialist types start from Christopher Columbus' position. It is our job, then, to avoid becoming Satan. It no doubt took a fair number of Christopher Columbuses, starting with the executives at PG & E, to equal the Satan that caused the Camp Fire.
So here's an idea: maybe if we set the bar really low for our mass movement we could be assured of an initial mass uprising. Let's call it the "People Who Are Smarter Than Christopher Columbus" movement.
Good idea? Or no? Let me know.