Monthly Archives: October 2018

On looking at old photos

It is not only that the entire world in those photographs has vanished, but also that I have been transformed in a profound sense and could not fit back into that world even if there were a means to transport me back magically to that time. This statement may seem like a painful reiteration of the self-evident. But the truth is that, like it or not, I have spent countless hours imagining what it would be like to travel back. And louder calls out Proust, “The only paradise is paradise lost.”

 “한국인들에게 ‘혁명’은 무엇을 의미하는가” 중앙일보


 “한국인들에게 ‘혁명’은 무엇을 의미하는가”

2018년 10월 12일

임마누엘 페스트라이쉬


최근에 ‘혁명’이라는 단어가 여러 차례 사용된 어느 은행의 TV 광고를 봤다. 한때는 극좌파들을 설명할 때 쓰였던 용어가 현대 한국 사회에서 널리, 별다른 거부감이나 비판적 고려 없이 사용된다는 사실은 놀라운 일이다. 그런데 오늘날, 특히 생활 패턴과 기술이 매우 빠르게 변화하는 이 시기에서 혁명이라는 용어는 정확히 무엇을 의미하는가. 이런 의문이 들었다. Read more of this post

“You do not have to be a Christian millenarianism any more to believe in the apocalypse.”

“You do not have to be a Christian millenarianism any more to believe in the apocalypse.”



Emanuel Pastreich

October 11, 2018

정부혁신취진협의회  (행정안전부)






2018년 10월 11일


@ 서울정부청사


이만열  (교육분야 위원)





Fundraising for climate change campaign and march in Seoul by the Asia Institute

The Asia Institute intends to run a series of campaigns concerning climate change and a sustainable economy over the next month. We hope to make pins, stickers and also banners with the following images on them. We ask for your generous donations to cover the costs of making the materials, organizing the events and seminars and publicizing with the general public.

Please let us know if you can make a donation at

Make sure to make the payments to:

Bank Name: KB Bank
Account Name: The Asia Institute
Account Number :533337-01-003142



Donations are tax-deductible in Korea. If you would like to make a donation in the United States, you can make it to our US account (please ask me for instructions.

“한반도평화구축을 위한 韓․美․中 시각과 국회의 역할” 국제정책세미나 (2018년 11월 6일 국회의원회관)

对于朝鲜半岛和平构筑的中韩美观点 与国会的角色


한반도평화구축을 위한 시각과 국회의 역할


2018 11 6日 星期二 () (9:30-4:30)



주 최 :

설 훈 최고위원(더불어민주당)

나경원 국회의원(자유한국당)

최경환 최고위원(민주평화당)

하태경 최고위원(바른미래당)

주 관 :




정책토론회 10:00-12:00



한반도평화구축을 위한 시각과 국회의 역할

좌 장 :

정세현 전 통일부 장관



한국측 :

남북한간 지속가능한 협력의 제도화 방안

박명림 연세대학교 김대중도서관 관장, 연세대학교 교수)


미국측 : 한반도 평화와 미국의 역할 방향

이만열 [Emanuel Pastreich] 지구경영연구원 원장)


중국측 : 한반도평화프로세스와 동아시아 협력의 향방

송성유, 북경대학 교수


설 훈 최고위원(더불어민주당)

나경원 국회의원(자유한국당)

최경환 최고위원(민주평화당)

하태경 최고위원(바른미래당)



2 (라운드테이블) : 2:00-4:00


동아시아 평화와 협력을 위한 지식인 네트워크 구축


사 회:

임한필 아시아미래지식인포럼 사무총장


한국측 :

이희옥 성균관대 중국연구소장)

윤경우 국민대 부총장)

배경임 아시아미래지식인포럼 대표)

홍면기 전 동북아역사재단 실장)

박장배 동북아역사재단 연구위원)

우성민 동북아역사재단 연구위원)

윤은주 평화와통일을위한연대 사무총장)

나흥수 행동하는양심 사무처장)

배현주 한신대 외래교수)




2018년 4월 27일 남북정상회담과 6월 12일 북미정상회담 이후 다양한 접촉 및 회담이 진행되고 있지만 한국, 미국, 중국의 입장차이가 존재하고 있으며 미․중무역 갈등과 국제 정치환경의 변화 그리고 남한의 정치적 이해관계로 인해 한반도평화구축을 위한 로드맵이 불안정함.

○ 현재 한국, 미국, 중국의 한반도평화구축을 위한 입장과 방향이 무엇인지를 학자, 전문가, 정치인을 통해 들어보고 대한민국 국회의 역할은 무엇인지를 들어보고 향후 함께해나가야 할 방법과 대안은 무엇인지를 모색하고자 한․미․중 정책세미나를 갖고자함.

4.27판문점 선언 이행을 위한 유관국 정책협력을 위한 네트워크를 구축하고, 의의와 보완, 발전 방향을 중심으로 논의하고, 국회비준 문제 등 국회의 역할을 더불어민주당, 자유한국당, 바른미래당, 민주평화당 등의 입장과 향후 협력과제 등을 모색하고 회의의 정례화 및 정책건의 채널을 확보하고자 함.



“President Moon: It’s time to pardon Park Geun-hye” Asia Times

Asia Times

“President Moon: It’s time to pardon Park Geun-hye”

October 9, 2018

Emanuel Pastreich



Last week’s sentencing of former South Korean president Lee Myung-bak to 15 years in prison and a fine of 13 billion won (US$11.5 million) has sent shockwaves through Seoul, and around the world.

Although many are shocked to learn of the degree of corruption that exists in South Korea, no small number of my friends expressed their delight to see that there is a country that is capable of putting a corrupt leader in jail and making public his malfeasances. Read more of this post

Dire report from Incheon is Korea’s greatest achievement

The Most important thing to come out of Korea recently has nothing to do with North Korea!


A landmark report from the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change convened by the United Nations entitled “Global Warming of 1.5 C” was released in Songdo, Korea which presents a far more shocking vision for the immediate future than the corporate media was willing to acknowledge before. The report suggests that humanity faces catastrophic consequences of its carbon-centered economy and makes a clear break with the previous assumption that carbon trading schemes are sufficient to address the problem.


The report avoids much of the far more pessimistic predictions of many experts but goes further than any mainstream report so far.


Here is a summary:



This chapter frames the context, knowledge-base and assessment approaches used to understand the impacts of 1.5°C global warming above pre-industrial levels and related global greenhouse gas emission pathways, building on the IPCC Fifth Assessment Report (AR5), in the context of strengthening the global response to the threat of climate change, sustainable development and efforts to eradicate poverty. Human-induced warming reached approximately 1°C (±0.2°C likely range) above pre-industrial levels in 2017, increasing at 0.2°C (±0.1°C) per decade (high confidence).

Global warming is defined in this report as an increase in combined surface air and sea surface temperatures averaged over the globe and a 30-year period. Unless otherwise specified, warming is expressed relative to the period 1850-1900, used as an approximation of pre-industrial temperatures in AR5. For periods shorter than 30 years, warming refers to the estimated average temperature over the 30 years centered on that shorter period, accounting for the impact of any temperature fluctuations or trend within those 30 years. Accordingly, warming up to the decade 2006-2015 is assessed at 0.87°C (±0.12°C likely range). Since 2000, the estimated level of human-induced warming has been equal to the level of observed warming with a likely range of ±20% accounting for uncertainty due to contributions from solar and volcanic activity over the historical period (high confidence). {1.2.1} Warming greater than the global average has already been experienced in many regions and seasons, with average warming over land higher than over the ocean (high confidence).

Most land regions are experiencing greater warming than the global average, while most ocean regions are warming at a slower rate. Depending on the temperature dataset considered, 20-40% of the global human population live in regions that, by the decade 2006-2015, had already experienced warming of more than 1.5°C above pre-industrial in at least one season (medium confidence). {1.2.1 & 1.2.2} Past emissions alone are unlikely to raise global-mean temperature to 1.5°C above preindustrial levels but past emissions do commit to other changes, such as further sea level rise (high confidence). If all anthropogenic emissions (including aerosol-related) were reduced to zero immediately, any further warming beyond the 1°C already experienced would likely be less than 0.5°C over the next two to three decades (high confidence), and likely less than 0.5°C on a century timescale (medium confidence), due to the opposing effects of different climate processes and drivers.

A warming greater than 1.5°C is therefore not geophysically unavoidable: whether it will occur depends on future rates of emission reductions. {1.2.3, 1.2.4} 1.5°C-consistent emission pathways are defined as those that, given current knowledge of the climate response, provide a one-in-two to two-in-three chance of warming either remaining below 1.5°C, or returning to 1.5°C by around 2100 following an overshoot. Overshoot pathways are characterized by the peak magnitude of the overshoot, which may have implications for impacts. All 1.5°C-consistent pathways involve limiting cumulative emissions of long-lived greenhouse gases, including carbon dioxide and nitrous oxide, and substantial reductions in other climate forcers (high confidence). Limiting cumulative emissions requires either reducing net global emissions of longlived greenhouse gases to zero before the cumulative limit is reached, or net negative global emissions (anthropogenic removals) after the limit is exceeded. {1.2.3, 1.2.4, Cross-Chapter Boxes 1 and 2}

This report assesses projected impacts at a global average warming of 1.5°C and higher levels of warming. Global warming of 1.5°C is associated with global average surface temperatures fluctuating naturally on either side of 1.5°C, together with warming substantially greater than 1.5°C in many regions and seasons (high confidence), all of which must be taken into account in the assessment of impacts. Impacts at 1.5°C of warming also depend on the emission pathway to 1.5°C. Very different impacts result from pathways that remain below 1.5°C versus pathways that return to Final Government Draft Chapter 1 IPCC SR1.5 Do Not Cite, Quote or Distribute 1-5 Total pages: 61 1.5°C after a substantial overshoot, and when temperatures stabilize at 1.5°C versus a transient warming past 1.5°C. (medium confidence) {1.2.3, 1.3} Ethical considerations, and the principle of equity in particular, are central to this report, recognising that many of the impacts of warming up to and beyond 1.5°C, and some potential impacts of mitigation actions required to limit warming to 1.5°C, fall disproportionately on the poor and vulnerable (high confidence).

Equity has procedural and distributive dimensions and requires fairness in burden sharing, between generations, and between and within nations. In framing the objective of holding the increase in the global average temperature rise to well below 2°C above pre-industrial levels, and to pursue efforts to limit warming to 1.5°C, the Paris Agreement associates the principle of equity with the broader goals of poverty eradication and sustainable development, recognising that effective responses to climate change require a global collective effort that may be guided by the 2015 United Nations Sustainable Development Goals. {1.1.1} Climate adaptation refers to the actions taken to manage impacts of climate change by reducing vulnerability and exposure to its harmful effects and exploiting any potential benefits. Adaptation takes place at international, national and local levels. Subnational jurisdictions and entities, including urban and rural municipalities, are key to developing and reinforcing measures for reducing weather- and climate-related risks. Adaptation implementation faces several barriers including unavailability of up-to-date and locally-relevant information, lack of finance and technology, social values and attitudes, and institutional constraints (high confidence).

Adaptation is more likely to contribute to sustainable development when polices align with mitigation and poverty eradication goals (medium confidence) {1.1, 1.4} Ambitious mitigation actions are indispensable to limit warming to 1.5°C while achieving sustainable development and poverty eradication (high confidence). Ill-designed responses, however, could pose challenges especially—but not exclusively—for countries and regions contending with poverty and those requiring significant transformation of their energy systems. This report focuses on ‘climate-resilient development pathways’ , which aim to meet the goals of sustainable development, including climate adaptation and mitigation, poverty eradication and reducing inequalities.

But any feasible pathway that remains within 1.5°C involves synergies and trade-offs (high confidence). Significant uncertainty remains as to which pathways are more consistent with the principle of equity. {1.1.1, 1.4} Multiple forms of knowledge, including scientific evidence, narrative scenarios and prospective pathways, inform the understanding of 1.5°C. This report is informed by traditional evidence of the physical climate system and associated impacts and vulnerabilities of climate change, together with knowledge drawn from the perceptions of risk and the experiences of climate impacts and governance systems. Scenarios and pathways are used to explore conditions enabling goal-oriented futures while recognizing the significance of ethical considerations, the principle of equity, and the societal transformation needed. {1.2.3, 1.5.2} There is no single answer to the question of whether it is feasible to limit warming to 1.5°C and adapt to the consequences. Feasibility is considered in this report as the capacity of a system as a whole to achieve a specific outcome.

The global transformation that would be needed to limit warming to 1.5°C requires enabling conditions that reflect the links, synergies and trade-offs between mitigation, adaptation and sustainable development. These enabling conditions have many systemic dimensions—geophysical, environmental-ecological, technological, economic, socio-cultural and institutional—that may be considered through the unifying lens of the Anthropocene, acknowledging profound, differential but increasingly geologically significant human influences on the Earth system as a whole. This framing also emphasises the global interconnectivity of past, present and future Final Government Draft Chapter 1 IPCC SR1.5 Do Not Cite, Quote or Distribute 1-6 Total pages: 61 human–environment relations, highlighing the need and opportunities for integrated responses to achieve the goals of the Paris Agreement. {1.1, Cross-Chapter Box 1}

“The paleontology of South Korean politics” Korea Times

Korea Times

“The paleontology of South Korean politics”

October 6, 2018

Emanuel Pastreich


The most remarkable moment in President Moon Jae-in’s visit to Pyongyang was his speech before 15 thousand North Korean citizens gathered in the massive May Day Stadium. The enthusiasm that radiated from this massive crowd was startling in its intensity and President Moon himself was visibly affected. Every word Moon uttered was highlighted and animated by the cheers of the audience, coming together, as Kim Il-sung once spoke, as if they were “one body.” You would never get that sort of a crowd, or anywhere near that sort of enthusiasm in South Korea for anything other than a concert by BTS or Big Bang.

You could see just how seductive for President Moon that level of enthusiasm in Pyongyang was, especially as the politics practiced in Seoul has degenerated into the empty ritual of bowing before those with power and money to receive their blessings or PR sessions in which one takes selfies with voters so as to demonstrate how accessible you are. Read more of this post

Moon and the opening of the green belts

The decision of the Moon administration to support the opening up of the “green belts” around Seoul to development by construction companies to provide housing suggests that we have ended up with the complete opposite of what the administration originally promised.

The Moon administration is taking the side of investment banks who are making a fortune out of keeping the price up housing high (even though there is a glut of housing still unabsorbed from the Lee Myung-bak era) in order to make sure that upper-middle-class employees of companies who put big money into their houses do not lose their shirts–and also to make sure that “housing retirement pensions” cooked up by investment banks do not lose their value.