repeating falsehoods like incantations

From Timefulness by Marcia Bjornerud:

An irony of our technological advancement is that it has created a society that is in many ways scientifically more naive than the preindustrial world, in which no citizen who learned physics through backbreaking work and understood climate through subsistence agriculture would have assumed that he or she was exempt from the laws of nature. The “modern” kind of magical thinking is characterized by the belief that repeating falsehoods like incantations can transform them into scientific truth. It is also yoked to a quasi-mystical faith in the free market, which, according to the prophets, will somehow allow us to live beyond our means indefinitely.


A very accessible and relevant introduction to geology in the context of the Anthropocene. Also calmly but firmly refutes pretty much every geoengineering “solution” in circulation, and offers short shrift to the methadone of (B)CCS.

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