Tag: activism

Great little article about the ineffectiveness of fighting systems of power (in this case climate change) with consumer choices.

“Steeped in a culture telling us to think of ourselves as consumers instead of citizens, as self-reliant instead of interdependent, is it any wonder we deal with a systemic issue by turning in droves to ineffectual, individual efforts?”

What’s needed is what’s outlined here: WWII-scale climate mobilization.

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From this article: “The dharma is not an excuse to turn away from the suffering of the world, nor is it a sedative to get us comfortably through painful times. It is a powerful teaching that frees and strengthens us to work diligently for the liberation of beings from suffering.”

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Ducks is a wonderful short comic.

From the author: “Ducks is about part of my time working at a mining site in Fort McMurray, the events are from 2008. It is a complicated place, it is not the same for all, and these are only my own experiences there. …Ducks is about a lot of things, and among these, it is about environmental destruction in an environment that includes humans. Thank you for taking the time to read it.”

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From Rebecca Solnit in this article:

“Naïve cynics shoot down possibilities, including the possibility of exploring the full complexity of any situation. They take aim at the less cynical, so that cynicism becomes a defensive posture and an avoidance of dissent. They recruit through brutality. If you set purity and perfection as your goals, you have an almost foolproof system according to which everything will necessarily fall short. But expecting perfection is naïve; failing to perceive value by using an impossible standard of measure is even more so. Cynics are often disappointed idealists and upholders of unrealistic standards. They are uncomfortable with victories, because victories are almost always temporary, incomplete, and compromised — but also because the openness of hope is dangerous, and in war, self-defense comes first. Naïve cynicism is absolutist; its practitioners assume that anything you don’t deplore you wholeheartedly endorse. But denouncing anything less than perfection as morally compromising means pursuing aggrandizement of the self, not engagement with a place or system or community, as the highest priority.”

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I saw a talk the other day by the founder of feral trade, a grocery and shipping business organized only through personal social networks, and with a completely open supply chain (which makes for a pretty fun website to explore). It’s a bizarre, inspiring, and very interesting model for business and art!

From their about page:

Feral Trade is a grocery business and public experiment, trading goods over social networks. The word ‘feral’ describes a process which is willfully wild (as in pigeon) as opposed to romantically or nature-wild (wolf). The passage of goods can open up wormholes between diverse social settings, routes along which other information, techniques or individuals can potentially travel. [Goods are traded] over social, cultural and occupational networks; harnessing the surplus freight potential of existing travel (friends, colleagues, passing acquaintances) for the practical circulation of goods.

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Here are some highlights from this interview with Alok Vaid-Menon.

“I hate how ‘growing up’ means that we are taught not to be honest and vulnerable with each other in public. I want to know everything about everyone. I am so bad at small talk. At parties with strangers I want to talk about your daddy issues and your first kiss and what you wanted your life to become and whether or not that came true. It’s hard for me to live in a world where we are taught that people we do not know are ‘strangers,’ and where we are taught to afford infinite complexity to ourselves and not others. Most of the time I want to scream in large groups about all of the parts of ourselves that we have to censor in order to become coherent.”

“I struggle with how we have to aestheticize our pain – often make it beautiful – in order for it to be taken seriously.”

“I’m working on understanding apathy as a political strategy of survival, as an active process of desensitization to the cruelty of the mundane. I’m working on understanding how to feel a type of happiness detached from possession – how to truly feel accomplished outside of the various rites of capitalism we are ingrained to value.”

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A movie trailer from the mind of Adam Curtis. Very interesting stuff.

He also made the 3 part series “All Watched Over By Machines of Loving Grace” which makes the case against the concept of nature as self-regulating machine.

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“Bernie Sanders should tell the millions of voters watching the ‘debates’ that local socialism is as American as apple pie, going back to the 18th Century, by mentioning post offices, public highways, public drinking water systems, public libraries, public schools, public universities, and public electric companies as examples.” –Ralph Nader

More here

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“Hoping for a society that is based on open space, public recreation, and accessible means of equality is a dream inherent with living in an urban environment. As our surroundings have largely turned commodity fetishism and our rights the prescription of conservative ethics rooted in egotism, we live among the challenging image of a silent majority.”

More here

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