February 5, 2019:
There's no water on Venus. Surface temperatures reach 864 degrees Fahrenheit and the planet is blanketed by clouds of sulphuric acid. Venus conforms pretty succinctly to our cultural visions of Hell. There is of course no life there.
NASA's most sophisticated models of its climate history suggest that Venus may have been habitable for as long as two billion years. Those conditions were destroyed through a process of runaway greenhouse effect. As carbon dioxide accumulated in its atmosphere, temperatures rose. Evaporation of its oceans accelerated, releasing more carbon dioxide. Temperatures rose more. Evaporation accelerated releasing more carbon dioxide. And so on, until the process became irreversible, and the apocalypse occurred.
Most of us know that atmospheric CO2 levels on Earth have risen to catastrophic levels in parallel with the use of fossil fuels since the Industrial Revolution. The danger from CO2 is immediate and devastating.
There's another danger though which is apocalyptic.
Melting arctic permafrost releases gigatonnes of ancient greenhouse gases which have been trapped there for millennia. Of these, methane is the most virulent. Lakes called thermokarsts literally bubble as trapped methane escapes. A positive feedback loop evolves in which increasing release of greenhouse gases warms the planet which melts more permafrost which releases more greenhouse gases. If the loop accelerates past a tipping point it becomes irreversible, as it did on Venus, meaning, the planet and everything on it dies.
This feedback mechanism is not currently included in the primary computer models of global warming. That is, things are a lot worse than currently predicted.
A lot worse.
Liberal ideologues suggest that "we" as individual consumers can impact these trend lines by voluntarily reforming our lifestyles. Reds like us know how false that is. There are no individual solutions to social problems. There are only social solutions.
Our global capitalist society must be forced to stop burning fossil fuels. Today.
That would be easier if we didn't live under capitalism. Obviously, much of the resistance to rationalizing energy production comes from those sectors of the capitalist economy which either produce fossil fuels or depend on them for their bottom lines; or which replace carbon-capturing rain forests with beef production. Unfortunately capitalism is our reality, so that our only practical choice is to use government to restrict capitalism's destructiveness.
Please: work for politicians who pledge to support the Green New Deal. Don't just vote for them. Go out and fucking work for them. Raise money, go door to door, stuff envelopes, send text messages to contact lists. Picket the politicians who support Big Oil and pressure the media to call them out. Fight to bring the nature of the issue to mass awareness. Defeat Ted Cruz, the Bushes, Mitch McConnell, Donald Trump, the Clintons, Marco Rubio. Contribute to our own positive feedback loop.
And: stop using language which obscures the nature of the problem. Don't talk about "global warming" or "climate change". Name the danger by its real name: runaway greenhouse effect.
Educate everyone you know about runaway greenhouse effect. Stress it over and over in your social media presence. Create meme-able memes. Use the media available to everyone.
Because Venus is our future if we're unable to force the governments to act.
Much sooner than current models predict.