Mess Up Again by NATORZ (Song credits: See You Again by Wiz Khalifa & Charlie Puth)

 

Climate Song Series

We’ve spent a long time despoiling our land
And I’ll tell you all about it how our future will tank
We’ve been misled by the fossil fuels’ gang
Oh, I’ll tell you all about it that we mess up again
Yet we mess up again

Dang, who knew?
All the oil we use
Just things we churn through
That end up packing landfills up through the roof
Pick another path
We know rare reserves on Earth won’t last
Yet nothing will be left once going fast

Have to clean up
Deal with things different, plan a better future
Those were the days
Binging will never pay
Now we‘ve landed in a sadder place (in a sadder place)

Uh
How can we not see all the evidence
When they tell us we’ve been wrong?
Carbon we burn through
Collects and accumulates in the sky
And now we’ll all be paying for a high price

We’ve spent a long time despoiling our land
And I’ll tell you all about it how our future will tank
We’ve been misled by the fossil fuels’ gang
Oh, I’ll tell you all about it that we mess up again
Yet we mess up again

Aah oh, aah oh. Wooooh-oh-oh-oh-oh-oh. Yeah

First we drilled and drilled all the way
And the world was going strong
And what’s small turns into a gush
A gush turns into spills
And the spills are never cleaned up
Pollution will be a big cost

And when big money comes first
Then the greenery gets tossed
With wild animals bemoaned
While our land is being torn
Now the balance has been breached
And stability’s all but gone

How can we not see all the evidence
When they tell us we’ve been wrong?
Carbon we burn through
Collects and accumulates in the sky
And now we’ll all be paying for a high price

So let the fight guide our fate, yeah
Fix every mistake as we go
And every ruse we make
Can get our future blown, blown away

We’ve spent a long time despoiling our land
And I’ll tell you all about it how our future will tank
We’ve been misled by the fossil fuels’ gang
Oh, I’ll tell you all about it that we mess up again
Yet we mess up again

Aah oh, aah oh. Wooooh-oh-oh-oh-oh-oh. Yeah

Yet we mess up again
Mess up again
Yet we mess up again

Climate Song Series


We can ALL use Climate Art to touch hearts, change minds and spur actions
#Cover #Sing #Perform #Record #Post #Upload a #ClimateSong NOW with #ClimateLyrics
Become a #ClimateArtist / Join #ClimateArt / Perform #ClimateMusic
Sing a #ClimateSong / Write #ClimateLyrics / Upload #ClimateMTV / Record a #ClimateAlbum
#ActOnClimate / Make a difference / Fight for #ClimateChange / Save our #Future
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We Can’t Burn Fuels Just Like This by NATORZ (Song credits: Something Just Like This by The Chainsmokers & Coldplay)

Climate Song Series

Science taught us what we know
With data and its gist
Temperature and rainfall
Extremes and climate risks
Scary highs and lows
Shaking angry fists
Clearly signs of nasty troubles for our deeds

We ask which way should we go?
How much we wanna risk?
We’re not looking for somebody
With a plan for quick retreat
In pesky hideout, in drudgery then repeat
Just so that we can cling to
Sick fossil fuels’ deceits

We can’t burn fuels just like this
No, we can’t burn fuels just like this
No, we can’t burn fuels just like this
We can’t burn fuels just like this

To our children do we owe
A future with low risks?
And how can we be bold
And stop being misfits?
Choose renewables
That is what we need
It’s truly crucial for us to succeed

We ask which way should we go?
How much we wanna risk?
We’re not looking for somebody
Bearing super healing gifts
Some magic potions, some instant easy trick
So that we don’t have to
Fix our carbon mistakes

No more carbon. Just resist
No more carbon. Just resist
No more carbon. Just resist
No more carbon. Just resist

Which way should we go?
How much we wanna risk?
We’re not looking for somebody
Bearing super healing gifts
Some magic potions, some instant easy trick
So that we don’t have to
Fix our carbon mistakes

No more carbon. Just resist
No more carbon. Just resist
No more carbon. Just resist
No more carbon. Just resist

Climate Song Series


We can ALL use Climate Art to touch hearts, change minds and spur actions
#Cover #Sing #Perform #Record #Post #Upload a #ClimateSong NOW with #ClimateLyrics
Become a #ClimateArtist / Join #ClimateArt / Perform #ClimateMusic
Sing a #ClimateSong / Write #ClimateLyrics / Upload #ClimateMTV / Record a #ClimateAlbum
#ActOnClimate / Make a difference / Fight for #ClimateChange / Save our #Future

Ready to Ditch Carbon by NATORZ (Song credits: Happy by Pharrell Williams)

Climate Song Series

Climate’s changing, it’s a fact to say
Extreme weather’s here and it’s taking place
Burning carbon round the clock makes the case
To prepare, we’ve got to care, baby, by the way

(Because we are ready)
Come along if you feel like the Earth has gone kaput
(Because we are ready)
Come along if you feel like renewable power’s cool
(Because we are ready)
Come along if you know that carbon is bad for you
(Because we are ready)
Come along if you feel like ditching the carbon too

Here comes sad news, oil and gas are bad
(Yeah!)
We can’t let them infiltrate our watershed
(Yeah!)
Well, we should probably warn ya, we won’t back down
(Yeah!)
Ditching hydrocarbons, this is the time, Here’s why…

(Because we are ready)
Come along if you feel like the Earth has gone kaput
(Because we are ready)
Come along if you feel like renewable power’s cool
(Because we are ready)
Come along if you know that carbon is bad for you
(Because we are ready)
Come along if you feel like fixing the climate too

Keep them in the ground
Oil and gas are bad. Keep them in the ground
Our carbon’s too high. Keep them in the ground
Do nothing. Keep them in the ground, we say…

Keep them in the ground
Oil and gas are bad. Keep them in the ground
Our carbon’s too high. Keep them in the ground
Do nothing. Keep them in the ground, we say…

Climate Song Series


We can ALL use Climate Art to touch hearts, change minds and spur actions
#Cover #Sing #Perform #Record #Post #Upload a #ClimateSong NOW with #ClimateLyrics
Become a #ClimateArtist / Join #ClimateArt / Perform #ClimateMusic
Sing a #ClimateSong / Write #ClimateLyrics / Upload #ClimateMTV / Record a #ClimateAlbum
#ActOnClimate / Make a difference / Fight for #ClimateChange / Save our #Future

A Plea to All Artists: Save Us from Climate Change

The Next Generation Needs Your Help

From an artist to another fellow artist, I, as a writer and lyricist, hope that you will reflexively understand and respond to me.  Please forgive me for intruding into your consciousness with a random message proclaimed by a random stranger from a random part of the world. But it is an important and urgent plea.

Being able to create art is an extraordinary gift.  In the creative process, we all strive to achieve the ultimate goal: an artwork of beauty, recognition, connection, meaning, influence and/or significance. However, success cannot reliably be attributed to any amount of talents, hard work and wishful thinking, but serendipity.

Serendipity has led me to you. You and I are living through a period on Earth that is undergoing astonishing changes and some of them have caused us and our future generations to be directly and gravely endangered by the greatest existential threat facing humankind: climate change.  We are part and parcel of the problem and the solution.  Other than reducing our personal carbon footprint, we must implore ourselves to do more, especially when the prospects of mitigating climate change have been getting worse instead of better.

Without the requisite fame and fortune as my megaphone, I figure my next best option is to persuade one person hopefully with the requisite fame and fortune at a time, to possibly pick up the mettle, take the good from any useful ideas, relay them to as many people as possible, and spur some prompt actions toward remediation.  Our human world today is afflicted with many problems and we all have our preferred cause to champion with our limited time and resources.  But I am pleading with you now to put climate change on the top of your priority because:

  • Climate change is deadly and catastrophic, directly and indirectly.

  • Climate change is negatively affecting and hurting the most vulnerable population more harshly than the rest and those people are least able to help themselves without us.

  • Climate change is uniquely global, long-term, irreversible and uncertain, and therefore more intractable.

  • Climate change has a tipping point and we are already late.

  • Climate change is interconnected with our political, social and economic problems and it must be dealt with first.

  • Climate change solutions require immediate universal commitments and actions and we should be volunteering to be the first ones.

  • Climate stability is like the first domino of our civilization. Once it falls, the rest of its pillars will collapse in succession.

Being an effective and successful artist is a rare gift. You are in a unique and privileged position to rally and harness the collective energy and support from all the people that you are connected to with your examples and/or artworks to exert the immense power of beauty, recognition, connection, meaning, influence and/or significance for the benefits of humanity and our future generations. I hope you will take on this mantle and challenge to tackle climate change from now on.

We can ALL use Climate Art to touch hearts, change minds and spur actions. I am personally pledging to start NOW.

YOU can make a difference. #ActOnClimate. Join #ClimateArt and #ClimateMusic. Fight for #ClimateChange. Save #Humanity & #Future.

The stock market is an institutionalized casino

The stock market is reaching record high level.  Is it really good news to our economy?  William Lazonick, Director, University of Massachusetts Center for Industrial Competitiveness, describes that the prevailing stock market ideology enriches value extractors, not value creators, in his Huffington Post article “How ‘Shareholder Value’ Is Killing Innovation” (1 August 2017).  In fact, there is concern that “The Fed is getting worried about the stock market,” according to Business Insider (5 August 2017). Truth be told, the stock market is just an institutionalized casino where profit vultures mine and store wealth for posterity and perpetuity.

Most people understand that whenever and wherever there is a for-profit business model, money has to be and will be made to be delivered and directed to a selected few.  Typically, the capital owners are on the top of the food chain and most of them are predatory, constantly on the lookout for profit.  As soon as they spot a profitable business, they zero in as investors, demand to be rewarded with their investments, soak up as much money as they can and eventually leave with their gains to prey on another target.  They claim that it is their right for their return on investment (ROI).  I call them the ‘profit vultures,’ but Mr. Lazonick refers them as ‘predatory value extractors.’

Such profit seeking for profit’s sake kind of investment concept is counterproductive to the conventional idea of devoting money plus time, effort, and energy to a particular undertaking with the expectation of a worthwhile result in the long run.  What is supposed to be a positive, healthy and mutually beneficial relationship becomes impersonal, selfish and exploitative.  Whatever is deemed as worthwhile over time becomes solely as monetary profit.  The time, effort, or energy aspects of planting seeds, breeding, nurturing, growing and harvesting in the end are completely lost in the evolution of investment, culminating in the creation of the stock market.

In the early history of investment, the purchasers of stocks, bonds and other securities were literally described as speculators.  According to some purists, they still are.  Being labeled as investors now give them certain legitimacy but the stock market is still like a big casino and speculation is rampant.  Anyone with money can buy shares of the companies listed on the stock market and sell them at any time as long as the market is open for business.  It requires minimum amount of time, effort, or energy.  As a matter of fact, the whole process can be computerized and preprogrammed, to maximize the chance of profiteering.

There is little regard to a company’s potentials other than the ROI.  Long term investment for capital expenditures like hardware, machinery, equipment, etc. or for employee wellness, training and empowerment, meant to increase productivity, may make a company profitable but take a longer time to bear fruit.  Those are hard ROI money.  Why go the hard way when there is an easy way?

Easy ROI money involves short term manipulation of various financial instruments, assets and processes, through flipping, high frequency trading, stripping companies of valuable assets to cash out by mergers and acquisitions, price fixing, loan sharking, gambling (or hedging for the financially literate), tax cheating, insider trading, cooking the books, etc.  Some may be legal and some may not and a lot of such practices are likely in the grey area, but it does not stop some investors and their financial partners from taking advantage of them.

Such financial maneuverings with the explosion of new and complex but mostly non-productive financial products created with the help of the mathematics and computer talents and wizards have enriched hedge fund managers, investment bankers, big bank CEOs, mergers and acquisitions specialists, financial instruments traders, financial advisers, portfolio managers, financial services analysts, etc.  There is even a new term, ‘financialization,’ created just to describe such phenomenon.  According to Oxfam’s annual study of inequality released in January 2016, the financial sector is a prime source of rising inequality; one in five billionaires comes from that industry.  Income inequality has become an insidious and infectious disease that rears its ugly in unexpected territories these days.

How do countries founded on democracy like the U.S. and Europe, allow such misdeeds to happen and continue?  Self-interest and greed have driven the profit overdrive to the extreme and to the mainstream, to the point where it is powerful enough to override the moral norm and sometimes the legal limit, from bending the rules and cheating to outright breaking the law.  Unless they are apprehended, the avaricious ‘profit vultures’ are presumed innocent until proven guilty.

Capital owners have always been the originators of businesses and the promise of profit has always been the motivation and reward of starting new businesses.  It seems to work until recent history, but the profit mandate is increasingly giving people license to feed their insatiate appetite for greed endlessly.  Now, such profit overdrive has become so addictive and contagious that it has the potential to disrupt and upend the capitalist economic system.

How do we solve such a problem?  I propose one solution:

The Nature Order Zociety or NATORZ will swap profit mandate with universal job guarantee at living wage made possible by G.R.E.E.N.-laundering and Greenopoly, and create a circular need-based economy to anchor sustainable, self-sufficient and resilient communities.  It will serve our survival physical needs, rebuild and reinvest in socially cohesive and healthy communities, prevent the tragedy of the commons, and harness and utilize our creativity for self-actualization and purposeful lives while solving the world’s most pressing and needy problems, especially climate change.

The broken capitalist economic engine

When there are widespread economic and related financial insecurity and anxiety, the majority of the working class is too deprived, distracted, detached, disenfranchised and/or disillusioned to pay attention, and more importantly, feels too powerless to deal with important problems afflicting our society, including climate change.  Therefore, it is paramount that we relieve our collective economic stress first.

We all know that our economy is sick.  The current economic diagnosis is weak economic growth accompanied by rampant underemployment. One symptom is proliferation of non-living wage jobs, expanding the working poor population and dampening overall consumer demand.  One cause is Artificial Intelligence and robots replacing human labor.  But the major cause is massive income inequality with newly created wealth disproportionately flowing to the rich minority, exacerbating the vicious cycle of diminishing money multiplier effect.

The success of capitalism predicates on a money-churning machine, working with the four prerequisites of the economy: demand, supply, market and exchange medium (money).  Money has to be fed continuously into the capitalist economy machine to produce more money by churning over and over again so as to keep it going.  When money investment goes into the machine, it jumpstarts the exchanges between demand and supply.  The more exchanges there are in the free market, the more money will be created by the money multiplier effect.  If the newly generated money keeps going back into the machine, it can theoretically keep going and even keep growing.

However, this capitalist money-churning machine has its constraints.  Just like any machine, it has to be calibrated exactly in order to work smoothly and satisfactorily.  The previous successful run was during the Post-World War II economic boom, known as the Golden Age of Capitalism in the U.S.  When public investments from the government poured into the economy, spurring the demand and supply of everything under the sun during that time, most people got a job and a decent paycheck to go on a spending spree, thereby fueling the capitalist money-churning machine, under a stable political, social, economical and natural climate, with much lower income inequality.

Back to the present, there are multiple factors preventing the machine from working properly.  The most obvious and damaging impediment is the growing income inequality gap.  With the rich taking the majority of the money gains from the machine and stashing them away in secret offshore accounts or in investments like expensive art collections, luxury goods and services, etc that do not spread wide, it slows down the machine.  When there is less money around, demand automatically goes down and thus supply.  The less exchanges there are, the less money will be churned and created by the money multiplier effect.  Inevitably, the money-churning machine will sputter and possibly stall altogether.

Unfortunately, that is only one of many ailments that afflicts the machine.  Many ingredients are needed to match the demand and supply properly to facilitate the exchanges.  On the demand side, human physical needs are much easier to manage than human wants.  Humans need food.  We know what humans will eat and like to eat.  Therefore, we know what to supply accordingly.  But human physical needs are finite, so we turn to the infinite human wants to boost the exchanges in the machine.  Currently, humans do not need iPhones, but a lot of them want iPhones.  Therefore, Apple supplies accordingly and does well.  But nobody knows for sure what most humans want or demand next.  So the suppliers who guess right will survive and those who guess wrong will suffer and fail.  For those who fail, they are faced with a phenomenon called creative destruction, which inflicts a lot of collateral damages in the process without remediation, and therefore harms the money-churning machine.  The rate of creative destruction is higher when the economy or the money machine is slowing than when it is speeding up.

On the supply side, there are many additional challenges to overcome on top of unpredictable human wants.  Money is the first resource input for a supplier so that it can afford to start the process.  Natural resources are needed to provide materials for physical goods.  Technical resources are needed to operate machinery, equipment, technology, etc.  Human resources are needed to manage and execute the required processes.  Logistical resources are needed to bring goods to the market. Any deficiency or shortfall of the aforementioned can cause a supplier to fail and join the line of creative destruction.

Lately, multiple resource fronts have been facing headwinds.  Finite natural resources are continuously being depleted and contaminated, thereby harder and more expensive to source.  Technological advances and automation may increase productivity but replace workers and reduce their wages, thereby displacing the money flow for the money machine.  The labor force is not educated enough and skilled enough to take on newly created technical jobs, thereby is stuck being unemployed or underemployed, especially without adequate public investment in education and job training.  Logistical advances, like drone delivery, self-driving cars and trucks, online shopping and delivery, sharing economy, etc are disrupting traditional industries and speeding up the process of creative destruction.

This is only one simple snapshot out of all the challenges for the proper running of the money-churning machine, considering all the other problems under capitalism.  All the above can be considered the internal factors.  The external factors, which include the prevalent political, social, economical and natural climate, are no less daunting.  Just the increasing income inequality alone has directly and indirectly caused the destabilization of the political, social and economical norms around the world in recent years.  Of course, the elephant in the room is climate change, which poses our biggest existential threat, including the money-churning machine.

When we think about or talk about fixing the capitalist economy or its money-churning machine, there are just too many moving parts that have become harder and harder to calibrate and synchronize to work properly, especially when the plutocrats have been messing with it and sabotaging it for such a long time.  Take higher tax rate for the rich.  If they can write off most of their wealth with fancy accounting gimmicks or hide their income in secretive offshore accounts, that money cannot be taxed.  Take closing the trillion-dollar-plus infrastructure investment gap or any other major public investment projects.  The federal gas tax has not been increased since 1993 thanks to the Republican deficit hawks and whatever amount, if any, may be allocated by the government will be underwhelming to make a difference. Take universal basic income.  It will never happen in the U.S., especially with the Republican Party contingent.  Even if it does hypothetically, the U.S. budget cannot afford a significant amount and it is not a permanent or even effective solution.

Universal Basic Income (UBI) has been hailed as the remedy for income inequality and may help in the short term by injecting money into the economy quickly but does not change the long term economic calculus.  Purely from the money-churning machine viewpoint, unless the total UBI is coming from the wealth skimmed off by the rich and matches an equivalent amount, there will not be a net increase of money inflow into the machine.  Absent other structural changes, UBI is just an illusion of hope.  Besides, it will completely dismantle the work ethic.  When you pay people money without demanding them to work, there will eventually be class warfare between the workers and non-workers.  Inevitably, people with UBI will also be reluctant to sign up for the essential but menial and back-breaking jobs with low pay, e.g. farm workers, trash collectors, janitors, etc., and robots will not and cannot replace all such jobs.  The smarter, more sensible and more responsible alternative is to give everyone a job and enforce job rotation so that he/she can earn his/her livelihood and also contribute to the society with a sense of worth and purpose.

Such a holistic cure would involve re-engineering economically self-sufficient, sustainable and resilient communities anchored by local need-based and non- or low-profit economic entities that provide critical and essential goods and services, like food, water, shelter, energy, healthcare, security, transportation, communication, education, etc.  All their proceeds will be used to offer universal lifetime employment with a standard living wage to local residents who will now have economic security and will financially sustain the local economies and governments.  Such local arrangement will also have additional benefits of worldwide application and built-in resilience and protection against other external threats like climate change disruptions, etc.

The major flaw of the capitalist economy and its money-churning machine is being unsustainable.  That is why the NATORZ economy is structured differently to avoid all these problems and with built-in sustainability.  The NATORZ economic model does not rely on the money-churning machine, except initially, to wrestle and secure the resources from the existing economy to jumpstart the NATORZ economic base.  When NATORZ forgoes the want-based industries in the capitalist economy, there will be extra human, material and financial resources for its need-based industries, to make them G.R.E.E.N. (Good for the human Race, Environment, Economy and Needy), sustainable and climate change friendly, or in our word, ‘natorized.’  When NATORZ socializes all the economic costs and economic gains, there is no need to grow its economy, making it truly sustainable, self-sufficient and resilient. This leads to the birth of Natoronomics.

Natoronomics is the branch of knowledge that underpins and directs all NATORZ economic activities and goals pursued by the Nature Order Zociety and its members, by adhering to the NATORZ Doctrine, and by aiming at making all aspects of the NATORZ economy become ‘natorized,’ meaning being G.R.E.E.N. (Good for the human Race, Environment, Economy and Needy), sustainable and climate change friendly.  Natoronomics promotes the NATORZ ethos of ‘work to live’ which will replace the capitalist ethos of ‘live to work.’