Thursday, November 26, 2009

The Road: A Storm Warning for Humanity

“It is important for the human race to spread out into space for the survival of the species,” Stephen Hawking

Actors Viggo Mortensen and Kodi Smit-McPhee play a father and son attempting to survive in the harshest and most terrifying post-apocalyptic world ever imagined

There is no film that illustrates the foolishness of confining human civilization solely to our planet of evolutionary origin than John Hillcoat's brilliant motion picture 'The Road' based on the Pulitzer prize winning book of the same title by Cormac McCarthy.

The audience is quickly introduced to a post- apocalyptic world where a father and son attempt to survive in a cold gray overcast environment devoid of other living animals and plant life. What caused this global apocalypse is not clear (nuclear war, asteroid impact, super volcanoes, global warming?). But what is clear in this hauntingly beautiful yet devastating film is that we are witnessing the possible total extinction of humanity!

Equally as terrifying as the environmental disaster is the human response to it: with most organized groups of humans apparently turning to predatory cannibalism in order to appease their relentless hunger!

The basic theme of the movie is how a father, played by Viggo Mortensen, tries to teach his son, who was born right after the apocalypse, how to retain his humanity in an absolutely horrifying world largely devoid of it!

But the lessons our current human civilization can learn is to do whatever is necessary to avoid putting all of humanity into this predicament in the first place!

Yes. We need to do all we can to avoid another nuclear arms race in the future where perhaps Russia and the US could be joined by China, India, Pakistan, Japan, Iran, Israel, and the EU in having the power of life and death over the entire planet. Yes. We need to locate all NEOs that could potentially destroy the Earth. Yes. We need to deal with global warming and other environmental hazards. Yes. We need to deal with human overpopulation in relation to the Earth's resources.

But we also need to start expanding human civilization beyond the Earth starting with the Moon then Mars and then finally using asteroid materials to manufacture hundreds if not thousands of rotating solar orbiting artificial worlds with Earth-like environments all over the solar system. That's the key to the long term survival of our species. But confining our civilization solely to the surface of the Earth and just hoping for the best will eventually doom our civilization and our species to extinction.

Marcel F. Williams

Daily Kos: Storm Warning

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Destination Moon

glennwsmith said... Very nice, Marcel. This is one of the most beautifully put together, forward-looking, and yet also understated videos which I've yet seen from a major space agency -- and it just goes to show that there's a lot of good material out there if you know where to find it.

G. W. (Glenn) Smith


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