What’s with Ozymandias?

Roman-era historian Diodorus Siculus, who described a statue of Ozymandias, more commonly known as Rameses II (possibly the pharaoh referred to in the Book of Exodus). Diodorus reports the inscription on the statue, which he claims was the largest in Egypt, as follows: “King of Kings Ozymandias am I. If any want to know how great I am and where I lie, let him outdo me in my work.” (The statue and its inscription do not survive, and were not seen by Shelley; his inspiration for  [the sonnet]  “Ozymandias” was verbal rather than visual.)  http://www.poetryfoundation.org/learning/guide/238972   View Shelley’s sonnet here.

This paper is a commentary on the book; Keeping the Wild:  Against the Domestication of Earth

The book is Edited by George Wuerthner, Eileen Crist, and Tom Butler. Published by the Foundation for Deep Ecology in collaboration with Island Press, 2014, Washington D.C.




8 May, 2015


Erle Ellis is a senior Fellow (2012) of the Breakthrough Institute.  Tom Butler quotes Erle: “amazing opportunity” that “humanity has now made a leap to an entirely new level of planetary importance.”

I agree with Associate Professor Ellis but not for the reason he is most probably promoting.  We are important as the most lethal killer of Earth beings ever to emerge from the womb of Gaia.  How can this be?  I don’t understand it.  We are important as a focal point of efforts to curtail the continuing damage.  We are important as a case study of what we must avoid, what we must cease to be.  Know your enemy is a saying of extreme importance to all of us as we come to realise that we are the ‘enemy within.”


9 May, 2015


“It is hard to interpret Ellis as anything but a straight-ahead celebrant for a cyborg generation  alienated from the natural world, steeped in simulacra, and inclined to believe that any environmental problem can be solved through a techno-fix”   It appears that the Human Centred Conservationists wish to build a world “thoughtfully manipulated, perhaps even ‘sustainably’  for human ends.”  Tom Butler


A human-centred conservation policy by definition not a conservation policy at all.  As Tom Butler says: “These developments not only make humans usurpers but advance this way of life as right.”


It is without a doubt possible to steer a course through modern times, climate change and all, which honours the needs of humans as well as other-than-humans.  Taking it down to the most basic level, a personal level, we just cannot survive without the other-than-human beings, especially the microscopic, that share our – ah but do they belong to us or Gaia? – bodies.



Rise of the Neo-Greens

Paul Kingsnorth


Please find a bio here.


Paul writes a good introduction to the ideas of what I have called Human centred Conservation.  Choosing to place this article first in the book was an excellent choice in my opinion.


“Now that ‘science’ has shown us that nothing is ’pristine’ and nature ‘adapts,’ there’s no reason to worry about traditional green goals [according to the neo-greens(sic)] such as protecting rainforest habitats. ‘Is halting deforestation in the Amazon….feasible?’  Kareiva and colleagues ask, ‘Is it even necessary?’ [see]

Somehow, you know what the answer is going to be before the authors give it to you.”


I suggest that few, if any, environmentalists are calling for an “original purity; uncorrupted or unsullied” www.thefreedictionary.com/pristine  conservation area.  It is well known that there is almost nowhere on, in, or under Earth that the boots of humans have not trampled, scarred or polluted.  So what?  What debilitated mind would use that fact as a reason to continue the destruction?


‘Nature adapts’ Thankfully true.  Humans adapt also as in learning to walk with crutches or to communicate with sign language.  Some poisons we find in our environment, especially our food don’t kill us but they do weaken our immune systems.  Is that a reason to accept their insertion?


Is halting rainforest destruction feasible?  Of course it is feasible.  I’ll grant that it is not probable given the politics and greed of present governments and the corporations that rule them. Is that a reason to stop trying?  Of course not.  ‘If you can beat them, join them” is never a solution but the attitude of a sick mind.

And to question the necessity is not only sick but insane.  Climate scientists have solid evidence of the measure in which rainforest destruction is contributing to climate change, especially the distribution of moisture by wind currents.  Now what I have just said is anthropocentric.  We need to protect and preserve the rainforest, as well as other habitats, because they have inherent value and are more valuable and essential to the health of Earth [In the future, I’ll refer to Earth as Gaia.] than humans.  Of course, we don’t know exactly what is valuable and what is not valuable to the health of Gaia but our destructive way of life makes it necessary that we at least try and implement preventative measures to the best that our knowledge of Gaia allows.