Blog: Truth is an incremental process
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Derrick Jensen - another interesting character

After reading some of John Zerzan's stuff, I discovered Derrick Jensen, who has a lot of views on where society is headed, and what we should be doing about it.

Date:   3/28/2009 12:48:40 PM   ( 12 y ) ... viewed 2326 times

Derrick Jensen talks about taking action now, but I think that is unlikely to happen because of the way our minds are geared up to behaving in a way outlined in "The Pleasure Trap" (wow, look who's given this 5 stars). His book, Endgame, looks quite interesting, and I may but it. Below are two videos on him, if you have 2 hours to spare:

The second one below explains to me why I am drawn to organic gardening. The point starts at exactly 16 minutes:

In fact here is the text, if you want to save time and not watch the video:

"If you’ve gotten this far in this book—or if you’re simply anything other than entirely insensate—we probably agree that civilization is going to crash, whether or not we help bring this about. If you don’t agree with this, we probably have nothing to say to each other (How ’bout them Cubbies!). We probably also agree that this crash will be messy. We agree further that since industrial civilization is systematically dismantling the ecological infrastructure of the planet, the sooner civilization comes down (whether or not we help it crash) the more life will remain afterwards to support both humans and nonhumans.

If you agree with all this, and if you don’t want to dirty your spirituality and conscience with the physical work of helping to bring down civilization, and if your primary concern really is for the well-being of those (humans) who will be alive during and immediately after the crash (as opposed to simply raising this issue because you’re too scared to talk about the crash or to allow anyone else to do so either), then, given (and I repeat this point to emphasize it) that civilization is going to come down anyway, you need to start preparing people for the crash. Instead of attacking me for stating the obvious, go rip up asphalt in vacant parking lots to convert them to neighborhood gardens, go teach people how to identify local edible plants, even in the city (especially in the city) so these people won’t starve when the proverbial shit hits the fan and they can no longer head off to Albertson’s for groceries. Set up committees to eliminate or, if appropriate, channel the (additional) violence that might break out."

...and it's basically because I realise that if I am not part of the solution I am part of the problem. But it's not just that, it's the massive health benefits. You can get some idea what things may be like when you look at Cuba's "Special Period" (I blogged about this here) when their oil supply dropped following perestroika in Russia. Plus I now know how to live much longer, and I think the problem of "peak oil" will now hit in my lifetime and precipitate the changes that Jensen speaks of. So I am keen to be in a position of strength when it happens (hey if everyone did this, we would possibly stop climate change anyway).

To be in a position of strength I'd like to have a property in a remote area which can click over to self sustainability at any minute. I don't really want to be near a city because I figure that they will be the biggest problem areas. So I guess I'll have to move at some point. However the knowledge of what to do will be invaluable. And seeds of course. It's also handy to know that the human body can fast, so I can travel considerable distances without food or water. I think most city dwellers would freak out and not know what to do if the types of changes that Jensen speaks of came about. I guess in his words, they'd be "f***ed". For once they would have to take responsibility for themselves.

I have also figured that defending your property and food with an AK47 is a less reliable option than not having starving people try and steal your vegetables in the first place, so I actually like his ideas of building up the knowledge needed for self survival, and sharing this knowledge with others, as Jensen speaks of. But I am not sure if I share his enthusiasm that we can make a change by civil disobedience. Well, if there is any of that I guess it will come when Mr Smith can't get food for the family, and starts to get more than a little annoyed. I think it's at that point that law and order will break down, when the pleasure response no longer works.

(edit)

Oh and by the way T Colin Campbell gave this book 5 stars too. I have just ordered it.

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