Factories pollute and in the past, even more so. However, if you look at what the old factories were tossing about, they were substances that were very much geological as they were local. e.g. train of thought – coal comes from earth so… Plastic and methel-anything is a composit but what the hell is it and where on earth does it go when we toss it into the landfill recycling bin.
Today, I passed a new factory being built upstate NY. It is a tight tall box that appears almost German in its precision. It is also painted green, perhaps an homage to the field that has forever been adulterated by its creation there. On half a mile down the road, on the main road, the wreckage of another factory is taking several years to remove, and the building site (pad/footprint/lot) appears larger and already hooked up the transportation system having both main road access and a rusting rail spur. Why not remove, replace, and renovate an already brownfield? No. Not the American way. Americapitalism is to waste what is here, take down what is standing, build up wherever is vacant. It is the road that is widened, moved, widened, moved, and widened again until all surfaces are that road.
In Americapitalism, waste and misuse is important in the cycle of growth, growth, growth (I understand, not a natural system indeed). Environmentalism is just another product in this capitalist state, the green paint or the eco toilet paper made from 10% recycled fibers and 90% habitat of howler monkeys. You are wiping your ass with howler monkey habitat and paying for the honor of doing so, 10% less. The green of the building is like those condos called Fox Run, Apple Fields, Fawn Leap, whatever habitat was leveled for said construction.
More and more land is falling to our chemical lifestyle. Farms have been failing for years now, but this last decade with the housing market this and the boom of dotcom that, our fields are rife with weeds and more agriculture land has either become someone’s track home (plastic toys so huge, such complex carbon chains we can only wonder) or in danger of becoming such. This land, once we put a house of synthetic materials and crap cannot be reused for food production, least we create the wonder bran cereal that whisks away cancer in compensation to the toxins leaching into the soil and water from modern petro-existance.
As I have aged, I have seen the broken barns of my youth fall into piles or vanish completely. The remaining barns and a fair amount of grand farm houses have taken their rotting place and will soon be similarly erased and with them not just a way of life that makes certain writers of the liberal press go “ahhhhh” and take bales of photos to capture (albeit for contracts for MOMO coffee table books) but a fabric of society that can point to a truly sustainable today (not future, I gave up believing in the future when I learned that Santa didn’t exist).
Perhaps it doesn’t matter, all this. Our future, those children teachers and all those get all wet about protecting, they are watching Saw V, drinking Red Bull, and playing video games with children all over the world through their network. Is that a good thing? In a post-post-modern world, no. Can we stop it? In Americapistalism, protest is just another product, and if the field is vacant we need develop it, if already build up, take it all down and replace. The cities being dismantled are not a sign of the end times, they are the logical extension of this new capitalism that will not rest until we are all rich, fat, wired, and quite quite extinct.