CASA COMUM DEVASTADA – Nova encíclica papal prega a necessidade de uma ousada revolução cultural para superar o consumismo desenfreado, a devastação ambiental e as mudanças climáticas

Earth Day

Papa Chico – codinome que assumiu, no topo da hierarquia eclesiástica da Cristandade, este ousado argentino, Jorge Mario Bergoglio (conterrâneo do Che!) – ousa enfim explicitar ao seu mundial rebanho aquilo que a Ciência já vem afirmando há décadas (a religião é sempre atrasadinha no reconhecimento dos fatos, nenhuma surpresa!): por efeito da ação humana, em especial a queima de combustíveis fósseis em larga escala e o consumismo predatório praticado por vastas porções do mundo dito “rico e civilizado”, estamos em meio a um crise ecológica de imensas proporções, com estimativas de aumento das temperaturas globais entre 2º e 6º graus Celsius ao fim deste século (não é Nostradamus, são as profecias do IPCC…). Será mesmo que o Papa terá mesmo coragem de confrontar as megacorporações globais, os interesses petrolíferos, os mercenários negacionistas? E os “fiéis”, vão atender ao chamado papal ou vão fingir que nada ouviram? Os cristão deste mundo hão de adentrar movimentos sociais, marchas de rua, boicotes organizados, no sentido de demandar em massa, através da força coletiva, uma revolução imediata contra para a degradação socio-ambiental imposta pelo capitalismo globalizado? Quem viver, verá… Com a palavra, El Papa e sua repercussão midiática:

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“Our common home is like a sister with whom we share our life and a beautiful mother who opens her arms to embrace us. (…) This sister now cries out to us because of the harm we have inflicted on her by our irresponsible use and abuse of the goods with which God has endowed her. We have come to see ourselves as her lords and masters, entitled to plunder her at will. (…) The violence present in our hearts, wounded by sin, is also reflected in the symptoms of sickness evident in the soil, in the water, in the air and in all forms of life. This is why the earth herself, burdened and laid waste, is among the most abandoned and maltreated of our poor; she “groans in travail” (Rom 8:22). We have forgotten that we ourselves are dust of the earth (cf. Gen 2:7); our very bodies are made up of her elements, we breathe her air and we receive life and refreshment from her waters.” [READ IT ALL HERE]

POPE FRANCIS / JORGE MARIO BERGOGLIO 
(2015 Encyclical Letter [READ IT ALL HERE])
Wikipedia

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DEMOCRACY NOW!

Democracy Now
“In his long-awaited encyclical on the environment and climate change, Pope Francis has called for swift action to save the planet from environmental ruin, urging world leaders to hear “the cry of the Earth and the cry of the poor.” He called for a change of lifestyle in rich countries steeped in a “throwaway” consumer culture, and an end to “obstructionist attitudes” that sometimes put profit before the common good. Pope Francis said protecting the planet is a moral and ethical “imperative” for believers and nonbelievers alike that should supersede political and economic interests. A major theme of the encyclical is the disparity between rich and poor. “We fail to see that some are mired in desperate and degrading poverty, with no way out, while others have not the faintest idea of what to do with their possessions, vainly showing off their supposed superiority and leaving behind them so much waste which, if it were the case everywhere, would destroy the planet,” he said. We speak to Naomi Klein, author of “This Changes Everything: Capitalism vs. the Climate.” She has been invited to speak at the Vatican, where she will speak at the “People and Planet First: The Imperative to Change Course” conference. And here in New York is Nathan Schneider, columnist at America magazine, a national Catholic weekly magazine published by the Jesuits.”

WATCH IT! 

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THE NEW YORK TIMES:

NYTimes

Pope Francis on Thursday called for a radical transformation of politics, economics and individual lifestyles to confront environmental degradation and climate change, blending a biting critique of consumerism and irresponsible development with a plea for swift and unified global action.The vision that Francis outlined in a 184-page papal encyclical is sweeping in ambition and scope: He describes relentless exploitation and destruction of the environment and says apathy, the reckless pursuit of profits, excessive faith in technology and political shortsightedness are to blame.The most vulnerable victims, he declares, are the world’s poorest people, who are being dislocated and disregarded.

Francis, the first pope from the developing world, used the encyclical — titled “Laudato Si’,” or “Praise Be to You” — to highlight the crisis posed by climate change. He places most of the blame on fossil fuels and human activity, while warning of an “unprecedented destruction of ecosystems, with serious consequence for all of us” if corrective action is not taken swiftly. Developed, industrialized countries were mostly responsible, he says, and are obligated to help poorer nations confront the crisis.“Climate change is a global problem with grave implications: environmental, social, economic, political and for the distribution of goods,” he writes. “It represents one of the principal challenges facing humanity in our day.”

READ ON

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A graffiti image of Pope Francis in Saint-Romain-au-Mont-d’Or, France.

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Full text of pope’s statement on environment and exploitation

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The Guardian

“The Earth, our home, is beginning to look more and more like an immense pile of filth. In many parts of the planet, the elderly lament that once beautiful landscapes are now covered with rubbish. Industrial waste and chemical products utilised in cities and agricultural areas can lead to bioaccumulation in the organisms of the local population, even when levels of toxins in those places are low. Frequently no measures are taken until after people’s health has been irreversibly affected.

These problems are closely linked to a throwaway culture which affects the excluded just as it quickly reduces things to rubbish. To cite one example, most of the paper we produce is thrown away and not recycled. It is hard for us to accept that the way natural ecosystems work is exemplary: plants synthesise nutrients which feed herbivores; these in turn become food for carnivores, which produce significant quantities of organic waste which give rise to new generations of plants.

But our industrial system, at the end of its cycle of production and consumption, has not developed the capacity to absorb and reuse waste and by-products. We have not yet managed to adopt a circular model of production capable of preserving resources for present and future generations, while limiting as much as possible the use of non-renewable resources, moderating their consumption, maximizing their efficient use, reusing and recycling them. A serious consideration of this issue would be one way of counteracting the throwaway culture which affects the entire planet…” Pope Francis @ The Guardian

Leitura essencial para quem está faminto por um mundo mais justo: “Stuffed and Starved”, de Raj Patel (Leia um trecho e baixe o ebook:)

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“Today, when we produce more food than ever before, more than one in ten people on Earth are hungry. The hunger of 800 million happens at the same time as another historical first: that they are outnumbered by the one billion people on this planet who are overweight. Global hunger and obesity are symptoms of the same problem and, what’s more, the route to eradicating world hunger is also the way to prevent global epidemics of diabetes and heart disease, and to address a host of environmental and social ills. Overweight and hungry people are linked through the chains of production that bring food from fields to our plate. Guided by the profit motive, the corporations that sell our food shape and constrain how we eat, and how we think about food. The limitations are clearest at the fast food outlet, where the spectrum of choice runs from McMuffin to McNugget. But there are hidden and systemic constraints even when we feel we’re beyond the purview of Ronald McDonald.

Our choices are not entirely our own because, even in a supermarket, the menu is crafted not by our choices, nor by the seasons, nor where we find ourselves, nor by the full range of apples available, nor by the full spectrum of available nutrition and tastes, but by the power of food corporations.

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Raj Patel

Stuffed and Starved (by Raj Patel) is “an enquiry that uncovers the real reasons for famine in Asia and Africa, why there is a worldwide epidemic of farmer suicides, why we don’t know what’s in our food any more, why black people in the United States are more likely to be overweight than white, why there are cowboys in South Central Los Angeles, and how the world’s largest social movement is discovering ways, large and small, for us to think about, and live differently with, food.

India has, for example, destroyed millions of tons of grains, permitting food to rot in silos, while the quality of food eaten by India’s poorest is getting worse for the first time since Independence in 1947. In 1992, in the same towns and villages where malnutrition had begun to grip the poorest families, the Indian government admitted foreign soft drinks manufacturers and food multinationals to its previously protected economy. Within a decade, India has become home to the world’s largest concentration of diabetics: people – often children – whose bodies have fractured under the pressure of eating too much of the wrong kinds of food.

It’s easy to become inured to this contradiction; its daily version causes only mild discomfort, walking past the ‘homeless and hungry’ signs on the way to supermarkets bursting with food. There are moral emollients to balm a troubled conscience: the poor are hungry because they’re lazy, or perhaps the wealthy are fat because they eat too richly. This vein of folk wisdom has a long pedigree. Every culture has had, in some form or other, an understanding of our bodies as public ledgers on which is written the catalogue of our private vices. The language of condemnation doesn’t, however, help us understand why hunger, abundance and obesity are more compatible on our planet than they’ve ever been.

Raj Patel

The closer a Mexican family lives to its northern neighbours and to their sugar and fat-rich processed food habits, the more overweight the family’s children are likely to be. That geography matters so much rather overturns the idea that personal choice is the key to preventing obesity or, by the same token, preventing hunger. And it helps to renew the lament of Porfirio Diaz, one of Mexico’s late-nineteenth-century presidents and autocrats: ‘¡Pobre Mexico! Tan lejos de Dios; y tan cerca de los Estados Unidos’ (Poor Mexico: so far from God, so close to the United States). A perversity of the way our food comes to us is that it’s now possible for people who can’t afford enough to eat to be obese. Children growing up malnourished in the favelas of São Paulo, for instance, are at greater risk from obesity when they become adults. Their bodies, broken by childhood poverty, metabolize and store food poorly. As a result, they’re at greater risk of storing as fat the (poor-quality) food that they can access.

As consumers, we’re encouraged to think that an economic system based on individual choice will save us from the collective ills of hunger and obesity. Yet it is precisely ‘freedom of choice’ that has incubated these ills. Those of us able to head to the supermarket can boggle at the possibility of choosing from fifty brands of sugared cereals, from half a dozen kinds of milk that all taste like chalk, from shelves of bread so sopped in chemicals that they will never go off, from aisles of products in which the principal ingredient is sugar. British children are, for instance, able to select from twenty-eight branded breakfast cereals the marketing of which is aimed directly at them. The sugar content of twenty-seven of these exceeds the government’s recommendations. Nine of these children’s cereals are 40 per cent sugar.

There are, after all, no mom-and-pop international food distribution companies. The small fish have been devoured by the Leviathans of distribution and supply. And when the number of companies controlling the gateways from farmers to consumers is small, this gives them market power both over the people who grow the food and the people who eat it.

Governmental concerns about poverty, for example, have historically been driven by fear, not least because of their concerns of what large groups of politically organized, angry and hungry urban poor people might do to the urban rich. (…) In different ways, the countries of Europe and North America set their food policies in order to ensure that the cries of the urban hungry didn’t lead to civil war…

MST5MST – Movimento dos Trabalhadores Sem Terra  || Brasil
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In Brazil, over one million landless people have organized and occupied disused farmland. As a result, they are living healthier, longer and better-educated lives than those in comparable schemes elsewhere. The members of this movement, the Brazilian Landless Rural Workers Movement, are part of arguably the world’s largest independent social movement organization – La Via Campesina (The Peasant Way), representing as many as 150 million people worldwide. Incorporating groups from the KRRS, with an estimated membership of twenty million in India, to the National Farmers Union in Canada, the Korean Women Farmers Association, the Confédération Paysanne in France and the União Nacional de Camponeses in Mozambique, it’s nearly as globalized as the forces against which it ranges itself. It’s a mixed bag of movements. Some of its members are landless, some own land and hire the landless; some are small producers, some are medium-sized.

As consumers we can shape the market, however slightly, by taking our wallets elsewhere. But the choice between Coke and Pepsi is a pop freedom – it’s choice lite.

In the course of this book, I look at some of the ways the food system is shaped by farming communities, corporations, governments, consumers, activists and movements. The sum of these choices has left many stuffed and many starved, with people at both ends of the food system obese and impoverished, and with a handful of the system’s architects extremely wealthy…”

Title: Stuffed and Starved
Author(s): Raj Patel
Harper Collins, 2008, 438 pgs
Download (epub)