November 21, 2017

Mammon and Work

Filed under: American Revolution, Freedom, Mainstream Media — Tags: — Russ @ 6:08 am


Another piece laying out the rationale for a shorter work-week.
There’s two reasons people have to “work” so much in order to get the money to participate in Mammon’s religious rites.
One is that most of the wealth nature and labor produces is stolen by a small gang of criminals, i.e. “elites”. The second is that people have been brainwashed into grinderism and into thinking they need to buy a limitless amount of worthless expensive junk.
And of course the elites have done all they can to impose a planned economy which requires one to buy expensive junk in order to be functional at all, most obviously the car.
The fact is that the vast majority of human societies, including most civilizations, did not force people to acquire money in order to function economically. They were organized in better ways. An economy and society which forces all human-to-human and human-to-nature relations into the money strait-jacket is a Mammon theocracy. That’s what this place is, a theocracy fixated on the worship and rites of a fake thing called “money”.
A necessary step toward human liberation and ecological restoration is to free our minds of this religious enslavement, become atheists toward Mammon, and envision a world where we’re not money’s slaves.
Propagate the necessary new ideas.

October 25, 2017

Using the Enemy’s Own Terms Helps the Enemy


Scientism and technocracy depend upon the people’s tacit acceptance of their authority and legitimacy. Although this patina of authority has been tarnished, it’s still mostly intact. Part of the job of we who oppose corporate-technocratic rule and poisonism is to keep undermining, subverting, eroding this perception of legitimacy. But this mission undermines itself when anti-poison people denote the enemy using the enemy’s own fraudulent term, such as “skeptic”, which the enemy adopted in the first place in order to bolster its perceived authority.
Scientism cultists are religious fundamentalists. By definition a fundamentalist can never be any kind of skeptic. A fundamentalist is someone who believes, in an absolute, rote, mechanical manner in one or more “fundamentals”, and who rejects in the same absolute rote mechanical way anything which is at odds with these fundamentals. At both ends there is zero room for skepticism, since there’s zero room for thought. It’s impossible for a fundamentalist to be a skeptic.
These fundamentalists call themselves skeptics because it falsely makes a claim to have looked honestly at the evidence and rationally concluded that something is implausible. It also has a general, positive connotation of free thinking (although even many bona fide skeptics are really cynics rather than free thinkers). When the corporate media calls someone a “skeptic” (it’s almost always someone shilling for the system line), they mean “here’s someone who is cutting through all the nonsense of the obstructionists and naysayers, and who will give you the straight talk explaining why to believe the government and the corporations”. And this is what the cultists want the people to think when they call themselves “skeptics”.
That’s one example of dissidents using the enemy’s own terms in the same way the enemy uses them, thereby reinforcing the enemy’s propaganda campaign. Perhaps the most common example of this is how often anti-globalists and anti-imperialists still use the term “free trade”, and often “free market”, without even the sarcastic quotation marks. “Free” trade of course is extremely anti-freedom: Globalization is a planned economy, completely dependent upon government subsidies and externalization of costs and risks, and it seeks total coerced participation and to eradicate all alternatives. But capitalism has systematically propagated the term since the 19th century for the obvious reason that people respond in a vague but strongly positive way to the words “free” and “freedom”. That’s why they continue to propagate the term today, because it still has that effect on the great mass of the people who don’t understand globalization and who might be inclined to fear and doubt it (to be truly skeptical of it).
So it’s counterproductive and stupid when even the opponents of globalized supply-based coerced trade adopt the enemy propaganda term “free trade”. They’re doing the enemy’s work for him.
It’s unfortunate that we have so many people who claim to be activists of a sort, who have a cause and say they want this cause to triumph, yet who so frequently reinforce the enemy’s own propaganda terminology. When I see such harmful sloppiness, and especially when I point it out and they don’t change this self-destructive pattern, I tend to assume that intellectually and philosophically the person is a slob who will never be reliable, since they can’t even impose the most basic terminological discipline on their thinking and communication. Someone like that is ripe to be manipulated and co-opted by every kind of enemy scam.
This goes for the term and concept science itself. There’s no such mystical thing as “science”, only the people who practice it and the structure of their actions. In principle science is just one of many philosophical tools which helps these people to perform these actions. Today in practice these actions and the way they’re structured and directed comprise only the corporate science paradigm. This corporate directed and controlled paradigm is the everyday practice, funding, and career structure of science.
And yet too many anti-poison people implicitly (and sometimes explicitly) endorse scientism’s lie that science is the most important tool, even the only tool. This is even though the deployment of pesticides and GMOs has zero to do with science, while genetic engineering itself has very little scientific theory. It depends almost completely on genetic determinist junk science and brute force empiricism. More importantly, today’s scientific establishment and mass media have only one system and depiction of science, and this is the corporate science paradigm. Any scientific fact or knowledge which contradicts this paradigm is ruled out by the system as unscience.
So the fetish of “always stick with the science”, standard among anti-GMO people who are both politically and scientifically naive, not only accepts the enemy’s fraudulent choice of battleground but it demonstrates a confusion about what the mainstream is willing to accept as being part of science in the first place. It’s not just bringing a knife to a gunfight, it’s bringing a chicken to a chess game.
Perhaps some of the anti-poison people see themselves as working to compile the factual evidence for some future day when a new scientific paradigm which accepts such facts will exist. (But I’ve never encountered anyone who said anything indicating such a consciousness.) That’s fine, but it has little to do with fighting to abolish poisonism here and now.
We who truly are abolitionists, as well as those who truly want to fight for reformist goals, have to understand that this is a struggle of politics, economics, history, philosophy, culture, religion, and biology, not of science; that there is no mainstream battleground of science, so that even if your fight is for the true science you can commence this fight only from outside the system and against it. We have to understand this, and act accordingly.
Propagate the new and necessary ideas.

October 24, 2017

Puerto Rico Amid Climate Chaos and Disaster Capitalism


A great physical and geopolitical storm.

Puerto Rico is a typical victim of colonization. It exhibits all the usual symptoms, from political swaddling to cultural derogation to massive debt predation to total food insecurity and dependency.
Globalization is the fully consummated form of colonialism. It starts with the historically colonized “third world” but works systematically to reduce all people everywhere to total economic helplessness and servitude. Globalization acts to destroy all local production and distribution. It destroys this outright or seizes control of it in order to force it into the global commodity framework. It seizes control of indigenous land and resources. It dumps subsidized Western goods. It destroys any functional politics and democracy. It imposes the control of multinational corporations over every part of life it can. It does this purely in the power interests of Western elites. Any benefits it lets trickle down to locals are purely calculated payouts to accomplices. Much of the global South has been crushed under the corporate boot this way. Puerto Rico already has already been subject to the West’s debt indenture shock treatment (“structural adjustment”).
Hurricane Maria was the most recent major colonial assault on Puerto Rico. Maria is only the latest of the accelerating procession of extreme storms being driven by climate change, and the latest opportunity for corporate disaster capitalism to further ravage an already devastated target. The climate crisis is the direct result of extreme energy consumption and the industrial campaign to destroy all carbon and nitrogen sinks. Modern technocratic politics has attained consensus on the systematic ravaging of ecosystems, culminating in the rising climate chaos driven by the patterns of energy consumption, waste, and ecological destruction practiced and imposed by Western-style productionism and consumerism. The climate crisis is caused by these actions. Since the elites and their supporters have long known this and in spite of lots of lip service have refused to do anything to avert the worst of it, it’s long been true that climate change is an intentional campaign of aggression against the Earth and all vulnerable peoples such as the people of Puerto Rico. Thus climate change takes its place as the most extreme and far-reaching of the corporate campaigns designed to cause disaster, destruction, and chaos. The corporations then proceed to use the crises they intentionally generate as further opportunities for aggression and profit. All corporate sectors practice this. Corporate agriculture is the most aggressive and destructive practitioner of all.
Corporate control of agriculture and food has always been at the core of the globalization onslaught. The US government systematically uses its “food weapon” to wage economic, political, chemical, biological, and often literal shooting warfare. Throughout this history of war and sublimated war, globalized food and agriculture has been a constant weapon and battleground.
Puerto Rico needs to produce its own food on an agroecological basis. Only food self-sufficiency can help build political and cultural independence, while dependency upon commodity globalization can only reinforce every kind of dependency. Food sovereignty is the core and foundation, but the implications go much further.
If you’re colonized, don’t have your own currency, and want to buy all the worthless expensive junk the colonial power is peddling, you’re going to be enslaved by debt. (Same as the position of the average middle class American.) Until the neoliberal austerity system collapses, it will never wipe out any odious debt, only further “structurally adjust” it as the Obama administration just recently did. The one and only way for a people to free itself is to self-jubilate the debt*.
Of course, even if a people roused itself to do this and could make it stick against the escalated US aggression that would follow, it would be in vain if they went right back to the globalized Babylon. (You’re also then voluntarily contributing to the climate chaos and other environmental crises which will keep hitting you ever harder.) Consider how Argentina renounced its debt in 2001, but then turned right around and wiped out its previously self-sustaining food system in order to turn the country into one big industrial soy plantation, all in order to rejoin the globalized debt system. They just couldn’t help themselves. They still craved all the worthless expensive imported junk, exactly like an individual who could grow food to feed himself but just HAS to have a widescreen TV…
The self-enslavement scales well, from individual to the people of a country to the “New World Order” of corporate globalization fantasy: One can wish to live like a human being, which makes it possible to live within one’s means while enjoying freedom, self-sufficiency, economic sovereignty and security, well-being, and peace; or one can surrender to the productionist/consumerist derangement, renounce all human measure and hopes, set one’s desires at infinity and set out on the death march of rat-racing and debt, never attaining anything but increasing clutter, waste dumps, dependency, insecurity, ill-health, unhappiness, and fear.
The people of Puerto Rico, just like the people of all historically colonized lands, and just like the people of America and the West itself, will have to make the choice truly to free themselves if freedom and security is truly what they wish. All versions of the “we can have it all” fraud comprise the same lie, a symptom of the general pathology of Babylon. On the contrary, those who try to have it all, gamble for the infinite, guarantee themselves one terminal end. The corporate productionist system has one fated end for everyone on Earth from the colonized South to the gradually fading Western middle class: Debt slavery and the total destruction of food security, amid total ecological devastation.
To recap the truth about the climate crisis: There is one and only one way to avert the worst consequences of climate change: Greatly reduce greenhouse gas emissions, stop destroying carbon and nitrogen sinks, rebuild sinks on a massive scale.
All else is a lie. The same goes for all other ecological crises. And the same goes for the great spiritual and economic crisis of the terminal Oil Age. You cannot solve the crisis of mortality by suicide or murder. You can solve it only by changing your life, choosing what lets us live, renouncing what is killing us.
*There’s been lots of rhetoric about how the Jones Act, a typical example of how the strongest powers like the US still enshrine “protectionist” trade barriers even as they ruthlessly try to wipe out all protective measures on the part of weaker powers, has allegedly been standing in the way of food relief to Puerto Rico. (So-called “free trade”, just like “law”, “property”, “science”, and every other alleged value of modern corporate societies, really is no value at all but only a propaganda notion to be used and abused according to the contexts of corporate advantage.) The form of this rhetoric has often gone “repeal the Jones Act and wipe out the debt.”
But this is a self-contradiction, just as it’s a self-contradiction to say “we need to become self-sufficient in food, and the Jones Act must be repealed.” In fact the two items don’t have the slightest logical or practical affinity. Anti-imperialists want to wipe out the debt but recognize the scapegoating of the Jones Act as standard misdirection. (And of course the US government could waive the Act anytime it chose, as it did a week later. In fact the existence of the Jones Act had zero to do with preventing food deliveries, but rather was only a pretext for extortion.) Meanwhile pro-globalizers, especially among congressional Republicans, want to use the crisis as an opportunity to get rid of the Jones Act, destroy the maritime union, further fling open the frontier of corporate rapacity, and drive the people of Puerto Rico and everywhere else deeper into debt slavery. Any force to repeal the Jones Act certainly will not wipe out any Puerto Rican debt, but will only strive to compound it.
Therefore there’s zero reason for anyone who actually wants the good of the island’s people to fixate on the Jones Act. (Indeed, from this perspective anything like the Jones Act which possibly could hinder the full fury of globalization is a good thing. It would be similar to how the US embargo has been a great help to Cuban self-sufficiency in food.) But the globalizers are getting their usual help from confused “progressives”, many of the same who couldn’t understand why the Haitian food sovereignty movement destroyed a predatory Monsanto seed shipment in 2010. Monsanto was seeking to take advantage of another “natural disaster”, the 2010 earthquake and UN-caused cholera epidemic. They sought to render the man-made disaster far worse than any “natural” component. So it is with the infantile fixation on “food aid”. Yes, in a crisis immediate food aid often is necessary. But the US-controlled food aid infrastructure has no altruistic component. On the contrary it’s designed to serve as a disaster capitalist campaign of its own, using the opportunity of the crisis to crush any local food production and distribution that still exists and forestall any aspirations to build such food sovereignty systems.
There’s great immediate need in Puerto Rico. But there’s a much greater long run need for the people to break their many colonial dependencies and reclaim their ecological sovereignty, most of all their food sovereignty. Hurricane Maria is just the latest and most extreme demonstration that Puerto Rico’s colonial dependency, including its globalization dependency, is not sustainable. Any aid ideology or measure which would hinder realization of this truth and the work toward this necessary goal is counterproductive and ultimately harmful.
And to say again, this truth is truth for us all, everywhere.

October 21, 2017

The Primal Mammalian Movement


From the smallest beginnings, and the power of a seed.

One of the mainstream media’s primary tasks is to convince each individual media consumer that he’s all alone with any critical or dissenting thought he might have, so it’s best to suppress those thoughts. It’s part of the “softer” neoliberal alternative to fascism: Rather than de jure censorship and violent repression of dissent, get the mass of atomized individuals each to censor himself, use crimestop, never listen to thoughtcrime or entertain any cognitive dissonance.
Hierarchical, professionalized science, including its hyperspecialization, is inherently authoritarian and pro-status quo. This is especially true of the technocracy paradigm under which science is assumed by almost all practitioners and fans to be equivalent to the development of technology. Under this paradigm, science = engineering. Most of all it’s true under the corporate science paradigm where this tech development mission automatically is assumed to be in the service of profit-seeking corporations. Putting that together, we have the modern scientific paradigm where what Kuhn called “normal science” quite simply is what otherwise would be called “corruption”.
I propose to overthrow this scientific paradigm and replace it with a paradigm of science rededicated to seeking knowledge for its own sake and for the well-being of humanity and the Earth. In the same way that every branch of politics must be socialist if it’s to have any legitimacy at all, so all branches of science must become the ecological versions of their respective disciplines. Therefore the ecological sciences, inflected by chaos theory, must become paramount. In the same way, technological design must adhere to the ecology rather than strive for domination and control. In particular, only agroecology offers a way for humanity to restore the soil, avert the worst of climate chaos and all other environmental crises, eat sufficiently and well, and organize society in a way combining the best of reason, humaneness, and ecological holism. This is the vision of food sovereignty.
There’s lots of people already doing good work toward that eventual goal. We need to scale that up, first as a campaign of ideas. As for our personal lives, the Earth’s call to anyone is to commit your life to the cause. That’s a very hard sell in this Mammon theocracy where even among the people who superficially have the right ideas and good intent, most still are objectively Randroids in the way they view the world. Even fellow travelers of the necessary ideas fundamentally don’t understand the concept of having no private existence, existing fundamentally as a political animal, a public citizen. All we can do for starters is to keep propagating ideas which are fundamentally against the whole grain of this theocracy, and try to find fellow atheists versus the superstitions of Mammon, technocracy, scientism, productionism who want to work on that atheism-propagation project. This is one of the basic building blocks necessary to build a true cultural, spiritual, existential movement dedicated affirmatively to the necessary agroecology/food sovereignty transformation, negatively to the total abolition of poison-based agriculture.
That’s the ultimate need. What individuals and small groups can do right now:
1. Take on as much of the propagation work as one can.
2. Become active building up the community food sector as much as one can. Growing some of one’s own food in a garden is a good first step, and the actions quickly scale up from there.
3. In one’s personal lifestyle get as independent of the system, as “off-grid” (using that term both literally and metaphorically) as possible.
4. To the extent one has to remain enmeshed in the system for the time being, at least be clear in thought and word that this is under duress. I still have to drive a car, but I never think or say anything other than that the car as such has to go. This is contrary to the climate crocodiles who wring their hands and then tout hybrids and electric cars (i.e. fracking cars, nuke cars, coal cars) as some kind of answer. No, that’s just a more pernicious form of climate denialism.
5. In general: Do the most good you can and never do evil. I have never once heard of an example of an evil action that was necessary in any way. That’s always a lie.
Much of this focuses on ideas and propagating ideas. I’m forced to be a writer since for now I lack any greater scope for action. In Eric Hoffer’s terminology, I’m an activist by nature who’s been forced into the role of the “man of words”. For now there really is no greater scope for action in America, since the necessary movement doesn’t yet exist in any tangible, coherent form. Or, any rudiments which may be cohering are not yet visible to the general culture of dissent.
So it follows that the first, prerequisite step toward building this movement is to propagate the necessary ideas for this movement. Not even at first to convince people, but to force the existence of truly alternative and practicable ideas into the public consciousness so that, when the cultural tipping point suddenly comes (history demonstrates that we have no idea when it will come or what proximate cause will trigger it) and lots of people are suddenly looking for a new idea, this set of ideas will be one of the sets laying around ready to be taken up.
Toward that great goal, the second necessary preliminary step is to form at least the nucleus of a future mass movement in the form of coherent organizations, of whatever size attainable, which will undertake whatever wedge actions are possible for the time being but whose primary action will be to propagate the ideas as far and wide as possible.
And then all this must take place in tandem with building up the community food sector. We especially need more local retail producers, and processing infrastructure, and political organization against the state’s repressive campaigns. The community food movement already exists as a vibrant movement with great scope for all the action one could desire (in addition to my so far intermittent market gardening, I’ve worked at a farmers’ market, herbal medicine garden, and am director of two community gardens). We need for the whole thing, from organic horticulture to market gardening to abolition of pesticides/GMOs to a global agroecology transformation, to evolve into one coherent cultural force.
Propagate the new and necessary ideas.

October 17, 2017

Two Favorite Quotes


AKA, “No, you follow me.”

I measure “favorite” here by how often the quote comes to mind and I smile ruefully and say “that’s true.”

1.The all-time champion remains a line I read in some political column or essay many years ago. I can’t recall the writer, outlet, or what he was writing about, but this line has stayed with me, constantly coming to mind:
“America is not permissive, it’s just promiscuous.”
That sums up perfectly the average American and all US institutions: Grossly self-indulgent where it comes to their own whims and crimes (often including violence), indulgent toward the whims and crimes of others they approve of, puritanical and censorious toward anything they don’t like, and in principle dismissive of such values as tolerance, minding your own business, live and let live, living in peace, even as they scream like stuck pigs the moment anyone impinges upon their sense of entitlement to all these things.
2. The challenger is a line from Freud’s essay “Dostoevsky and Parricide”. In contradistinction to the often profound political and religious philosophizing of his fiction, when Dostoevsky moonlighted as a regular political columnist he regressed to run-of-the-mill right wing fulmination. In dismissing Dostoevsky’s political position Freud calls it “a position which lesser minds have reached with smaller effort” (p. 177 in this scan).
How often I recall this, when I see all the hyper-educated “experts” and “intellectuals”, all pompously proclaiming their participation in this or that millennial intellectual paradigm, whether it be scientism, technocracy, neoliberalism, establishment versions of environmentalism and other causes, and yet their social and political vision invariably boils down to the same flat-earth worship of the system of money, “jobs”, temporal power, including regurgitating the same lies any half-assed mainstream media columnist is paid to spew. I assume as an axiom that 99.9% of Mensa members have utterly mainstream, mediocre political opinions. (Opinions, not even thoughts, let alone values.) Almost without exception these persons submit to the exact same bounds of political partisanship which are dictated to them by the mainstream media. All their learning, all their alleged intellectual principles, do nothing to give them even a single new idea.
This applies to the great majority of self-alleged “radicals” as well. They too constantly renew their devotion to all the main ideas and institutions of productionism and consumerism, however much it pleases them to sneer at “bourgeois” ideology (but their own ideology is bourgeois to the core) and arbitrarily to separate productionism into the two flavors of “capitalism” and “socialism”.* Of course many of them, come time for the kangaroo election (they also have no ideas beyond electoralism), tell the people to vote Democrat. I think Freud would agree that it never required intensive study of Marx to reach the position of “Hope and Change…I’m With Her”. I personally know plenty of utterly uneducated people who reached the same position, or its “Make America Great Again” flip side, with zero effort.
Of course most of these pseudo-educated elites are “lesser minds” themselves, mediocrities who had the grinder aspiration and the money to go to school. I’m applying Freud’s quote more to their grandiose ideological pronouncements more than to themselves. The point is that such grand intellectual projects, if they really possessed any of the integrity, profundity, and altruistic impulse their adherents claim for them, ought to better the minds and spirits of those who participate. But we see every day how there’s almost an inverse relationship between the grandiosity of the ideal and the gutter quality, intellectual and moral, of its practitioners and fanboys.
To come closer to Freud’s example of the steep drop-off in quality from Dostoevsky’s fiction to his everyday political opinionation, even where it comes to the few writers today capable of the true eagle’s eye perspective, those who speak profoundly about the soon-to-go-fully-kinetic crises of economics, energy, and ecology, they’re still prone to insist on self-indulging in “topical” political commentary where most of them immediately regress to the level of cranky right-wing bloggers. A decades-long spiritual training and intensive reading about the profundities of the relationship of ecology to the economy leads one to Archie Bunker-level political spewing about “the left”? Yes indeed, much lesser minds often reach that position with much less effort. (For real criticism of the left as offering no alternative to productionism and technocracy, one has to come to a site like mine.)
Perhaps the greatest irony of this culture is how the “Progress” ideologues are the most hidebound, intellectually stagnant, politically retarded epigones who are congenitally incapable of ever actually progressing to a new idea, a new vision. For them the laws of the world are never anything but the status quo forever. In many ways “progressives” are, objectively speaking, reactionaries in how they desperately cling to revanchist fantasies for things which long ago were disproved and/or destroyed forever, not to mention how meager their fantasies usually are. (To fixate on “bring back Glass-Steagal” manages the feat of being simultaneously nostalgic and lame.)
I think their parents who paid for all those university degrees should ask for their money back. All that investment of money, time, effort, all that “thinking”, and look at what the modern intellectual/political class comes up with: Straight parroting of all the most gutter “values”, lies, and ideological precepts of Mammon and the corporations, every last one of these a thousand times refuted. The modern intellectual is hidebound, stagnant, and stupid. The modern expert is a prostituted liar. I say we the people can do better.
In case anyone thinks I’m exalting novelty or radicalism for their own sakes, no. My total opposition to thoughtless reckless promiscuous technological deployment sufficiently refutes both. Nor is that the case with ideas. I call for propagating and enacting the new and necessary ideas. What’s wrong with productionism isn’t that it’s an old idea and institution, but that it’s proven destructive to humanity and the Earth. What’s wrong with “progress” isn’t that it’s antiquated, but that it’s long been disproven as at best a religious fantasy, more often an ideological lie. What’s wrong with liberalism and “vote Democrat” isn’t that it’s the same old thing, but that it’s long been proven ineffective and a malign scam. Those who still adhere to these disproven notions, claiming to be finding something new and possible in them, are liars and/or idiots.
The necessary new ideas, most of all the great need to abolish corporate industrial agriculture and globally transform to agroecology, are those needed to overcome and transcend these failed and destructive old notions and actions. That’s the one and only real kind of progress.
*This morning I read another piece exalting “science” from a “left” perspective. That means one denounces “Trump” and is indistinguishable from a partisan liberal. For this kind of scribbler, what’s wrong with de jure climate denial is that it’s an affront to the authority of “Science”, a kind of lese majestie. In reality, what’s wrong with any kind of climate denial isn’t that it’s intellectually “wrong”, let alone that it insults the majesty of Science. What’s wrong is that climate chaos already is profoundly destructive of humanity and the Earth and will become far worse. Denial of this and obstruction of real mitigation and adaptation measures comprise a crime against humanity and the Earth. That’s what’s wrong with it, not the liberal vs. conservative culture war part of it.
Such misdirection highlights how the de jure deniers are just one minority faction among the deniers. Far greater in number are the de facto deniers, who may “believe in” anthropogenic climate change and often claim to care about it, but whose actions prove they want no change in the status quo paradigms which drive climate change. They only tell various lies and propagate various scams in order to pretend they care and are doing something. These are the climate crocodiles, crying crocodile tears over climate change. They include the liberal hand-wringers, as well as the scientific establishment and its fanboys such as the author of the typical piece I linked above. All these persons and institutions systematically do their worst to drive climate change, even as they deplore it with empty words. This kind of denialism is far more pernicious than the de jure kind, since it reflects a much deeper Earth-destroying inertia.
For the climate crocodiles this hypocrisy driven by destructive inertia causes them to fixate on “Trump” even though ecologically destructive policy and ideology is the realm where, more than anywhere else, Trump is nothing but the continuation of the Clinton-Bush-Obama paradigm. And here is the best example of the pathology I mentioned above, where “leftists” decompose to become indistinguishable from liberals, often to the point of touting the Democrat Party, thus demonstrating their own indelible bourgeois character, to use one of their own favorite curse words.
All that education and ideological pomposity, and one still decries Trump’s affront to the Paris accord or the “corruption” of the previously public-spirited EPA. So-called lesser minds usually reach those positions with much less effort. It’s taken a bit more effort to work out the new and necessary ideas for a human future. We’ll see how much effort it takes to propagate and then realize them.

October 12, 2017

Calling All Mammals


In his essay on the story of the Grand Inquisitor in Dostoevsky’s The Brothers Karamazov, D.H. Lawrence expressed his belief that not everyone can look directly at the sun. Rather, humanity needs “nature-heroes” to mediate the overwhelming light. Thus Lawrence agreed with the Inquisitor’s credo of Miracle, Mystery, Authority. Plato, too, believed only a few were capable of rousing themselves from a bemused contemplation of the shadows on the wall of the cave in order to emerge into the full light of truth.
All our political struggles are more or less mundane manifestations of this circumstance. Everyone claims to want freedom, along with any number of alleged political desires. But almost everyone’s actions directly contradict this. On the contrary, almost all people seek Leaders. The Fuhrerprinzip is the most universal trait among all whose mode of social organization has ramified beyond the primal tribe. Authoritarian followership of every type, celebrity-worship and fundamentalist cults of scientism and technocracy, have almost completely replaced whatever once existed of politics in the true sense of positive community democracy. Politics is Dead. Instead the masses look for the hero who will mediate reality, which means help them escape from reality. This is the reality for which even the physical sun has become nothing but a post-modern metaphor. But the true political need is to Occupy the Sun.
The false version of the sun is to mediate it through fossil fuels and greenhouse gases. Humanity wants to warm the Earth, however ultimately destructive this is. The idea of physical warmth seeks psychological comfort, the simulation of psychological, spiritual warmth, just as poison-based junk food, and the idea of technocratically guaranteed food security, is superficial comfort food. This is how the desperate masses try to fill the void inside, where we’re sundered from our home the Earth.
(In the same way, via fraudulent notions of “democracy”, the people struggle to maintain the illusion of control and stability. Thus the corporate system’s indoctrination and propaganda entice regular Americans vicariously to feel part of the elite technocratic project. This is supposed to prop up the idea of security, stability, even as this same corporate neoliberal project eradicates all safety, security, stability, control, independence, freedom.)
Ecological destruction, such as the systematic and deliberate campaign of climate change, also is nihilism out of resentment. It expresses hatred of the home we abandoned.
All that’s left is the brain-dead lust for material stuff, and the vicarious ideal of control. For this vain pursuit we sundered ourselves from our home, ripping open the void we never can fill.
We struggle to use the worthless material stuff to fill the void, but this never can work.
Therefore we also try to fill the void with sanctimony and hypocrisy, which are the ways we try to maintain some sense of self-respect even as we vicariously live through dreams and fears of the uncanny power the corporate technocracy has amassed and will hold for as long as the cheap fossil fuels keep flowing.
This is what Marx called the alienation from our species-being. And today is any action beyond Mammon even possible? Or, like Lawrence also feared in his Grand Inquisitor essay, must all action and the very idea of action exist only within this Mammon framework? We see how almost all thought and action, even the most allegedly “radical”, is completely submissive and subservient to the productionist, extreme energy, high-maintenance technology, Mammon framework. It sure seems like all remaining “politics” is just attitudinizing and play-acting, nothing but a decadent consolation fetish.
Why is civilization infested with the climate crocodiles, to give the most typical example, those who cry false tears and wring false hands over the climate crisis even as they enact and avow the extreme energy civilization which drives all climate change and forcibly represses all attempts at mitigation and adaptation? They are rampant because of this ambivalent extreme. This is the most extreme example of the general hypocrisy and fraud everyone evinces toward all the environmental and socioeconomic crises, every so-called “progressive” cause and idea and value.
We have sundered ourselves, or let ourselves be sundered, from our home the Earth. This places us in decadent limbo where we have no peace and nowhere to turn, which results in the frantic restlessness and thrashing and wasting and destroying which is the typical day to day activity of “civilized” humanity. All the (corporate) king’s (technocratic) horses and men never can offer sustenance to fill the void. It’s all a bottleneck, all shoddy, all fake, all wicked. Inequality and organized crime erodes what gains civilization temporarily made, even for the rich. But since all are the equivalent of meth addicts, they can’t relinquish productionism/consumerism. Nor is any political action possible, as the system forestalls it in thought and deed. (An example of the masses’ being forestalled in thought is how I can find no one who even understands what I’m talking about when I call for movement-building, even though this was a standard concept in political writing just a few decades ago.) In this decadence the only thing left to try to fill the void is hypocrisy, the ultimate death of all human integrity.
Therefore we have:
*Climate change and the industrial food system = Decadent comfort and false warmth to fill the void inside where we threw away our ecological and spiritual holism.
*Climate chaos and poisonism = Destruction out of nihilistic resentment and denial of what we know we threw away.
Now we look at the eclipsed sun (but must wear glasses), want to look, but need the mediator, the “Leader”. We incarnate the ambivalence of finding the sun riveting and bearable only where mediated, only where eclipsed. We see only shadows and cannot distinguish good from evil.
All this is from the perspective of the false individual, the fake people who threw away all biological and social holism, all that’s ecological, artificial as well as natural; and embraced anti-ecological individualism amid totalitarian massification, all of which is humanly false and which doesn’t work from any practical point of view: Socially, economically, for public health, social stability, peace and safety, anything humans ever could truly want and need. This is the great bottleneck, the monumental dead end the human project has reached. All that exists today, including and especially everything touted as most “modern”, “progressive”, “scientific”, “hi-tech”, is antiquated, backward, cramping, derelict, the luddite province of the dinosaurs. None of it’s new, and none of it works. It’s all one bottleneck forestalling all human aspirations and attempts to think and build something new and constructive. The necessary first step for anyone, any individual, any group, any organization, any small mammal in the underbrush pondering the passage of geologic/historical periods, is to break completely in mind and soul with this bottleneck, burn your ships once and for all, and think only the necessary new idea.
In desperate decadence modern dinosaur civilizationists look everywhere for a replacement for what they threw away, the home they forsook. But there is no substitute. The only new road is the highway home.
The obscuring symbol crawls the sky
As if to abnegate,
Spots the blaze too bright directly to see.
Only plastic eyes mediate the light.
We want to see but cannot see direct,
The better to brush in evasion
The mystery the symbol fathoms,
The best to look most ardent just where we can’t.
Just as,
We work more frenetic than ants,
More angry and toxic than wasps,
To crank the blaze of the star’s heat.
We lust for the warmth we can’t survive,
Therefore invent mediating fantasies,
The confections and mirages of rhetoric and technology
To shield us from our yearning for warmth
And free us to stoke the inferno forever.
This ambivalent extreme,
Destruction we know and desire,
Scorch and poison, is to kill ourselves to feel alive.
What void do we strive to fill.
What did we throw away and now dream of darkly.
And now behind shields we yearn for that same ray
We throw up the shield against.
Our eyes strive to see what would blind us direct,
Our souls build an oven around ourselves.
We then encase us in asbestos,
And hope for: the best?
Hope for nothing.

October 3, 2017

Monoculture is Biological Warfare


Life has embraced the Earth for billions of years. Gaia is a warm robe of effectively infinite colors, tints, flashes of light, sparks of form, all enfolding this globe, making it a home. This biodiversity isn’t ordered according to any reductive command but plays out the patterns of a much more complex, interdependent, cooperative, holistic order. This order just barely can be grasped at times by ecological science and chaos theory. Through these rare sciences we can learn just enough to understand how little we can ever truly know, and how this little is more than enough for all our needs, enough to power all the desires of our souls. This is the way humanity can truly, finally live, and this is the only way humanity can live.
Therefore the great imperative of the Leviathan, the corporate technocratic state, is to clear the land and divide it into squares. It must completely subjugate the natural abundance, the great polycultural diversity, the ecological order, the non-linear Gardens our legends have called Eden among other things. The corporate state must devour this all, turn abundance into scarcity, life into death. It must turn the entire Earth into a desert.
This is the monoculture control imperative. By now this imperative suffuses all of modern civilization and dictates nearly all its actions and the actions of all significant groupings of civilized people. It can be seen and analyzed most clearly in the sector of food and agriculture.
Consider the leveling, homogenizing, sterilizing control imperative which dominates the entire ramification of this system. A lab generates uniformly engineered, cultured, and patented plants. This further concentrates a crop breeding system dedicated to narrowing the genetic diversity of all crop varieties to as close to monocultural uniformity as possible. The seeds of these narrowly engineered crops are increased on strictly regimented plots under a tightly controlled number of growers operating according to stringent guidelines under severe economic constraints dictated by patent-holding corporations and monopsony buyers. These seed companies themselves are owned, regimented, controlled by the seed cartel. They sell the monocultured seed to a homogeneous set of industrial farmers. These farmers operate under draconian rules starting with the seed contract and proceeding through the exacting roster of rules imposed by banks, government subsidy dispensations, and the monopoly sellers of chemical inputs. The farming process itself seeks total domination and control of the soil and everything on it, including the eradication of all unauthorized life forms. If the farmer deviates from the rules and rituals in any way he and his family become unauthorized forms to be driven off. The entire process is a strictly controlled authoritarian regime of poisons, machinery, and dollars. Preparation, planting, growing, and harvest are rigidly choreographed according to poison schedules and mechanized routines. This continues through the strictly disciplined sale to the commodifiers who process and transport the agricultural commodity according to punctiliously laid out patterns existing within a claustrophobically small and confined space which otherwise would be as big as the globe.
Once the mono-logic of the money and power flows has been played out, the afterthought of turning some of these commodities into food also plays out according to stern monocultural rules. Much of the commodity enters homogeneous animal feeding factories to produce assembly line meat, while another portion enters uniformly mechanized factories to produce uniformly mechanized processed food products. These “food” products then become re-commodities and again traverse the same unsparing monoculture of distribution, most of them to reach the homogenized retail paradigm of supermarkets and big box stores.
Thus we have the monoculture of corporate industrial agriculture and globalized distribution, based on technocracy and Mammon’s theological lowest common denominator of money, as controlled by this system’s primary organizational form, the corporate person. Here we have another monoculture aspiration. Technocracy already considers the corporate person to be the only true person, client, citizen. The system’s ultimate goal is to render this true in reality.
Therefore the vast monoculture of action is a monoculture of purpose. This civilization seeks a total monoculture of genetics, biology, economy, politics, culture, spirit. When we consider the profound homogenizing regimentation of our very food as we just described, it’s no surprise that the human beings to whom this industrial mono-product is dispensed tend to receive and ingest this food in a regimented way. Of the system’s many modes of wiping out human polyculture and inducing conformity and human monoculture, perhaps none goes deeper than its exercise of control through food.
This starts with simple physical control. Corporate technocracy induces the people to relinquish all food independence, all food security, in favor of complete dependency. For many this dependency reaches the point of absolute mental darkness, an actual belief that food comes from the supermarket, from the corporation, from the poison lab. The cultural and spiritual decay of diverse humanity to a standardized, dependent mass hominid then proceeds from there.
This systemic indoctrination is reinforced by the “feed the world” propaganda campaign. Superficially this campaign is about the allegedly helpless and starving masses of the global South. In fact all the claims of the propaganda, going back through the entire history of the “green revolution”, are proven lies. On the contrary, the people of the South comprise the great preponderance who still are providing food for themselves. This is why they’re the primary target of the corporate agricultural system. The people are targeted for economic liquidation and physical cleansing from the land. The great Southern ecosystem of human and ecological polyculture is slated to be eradicated, the land scrubbed sterile and portioned out into squares.
Feed the World is war propaganda. Corporate technocracy’s war aims are similar to those of its forerunners, the Nazis: driving the despised groups out of the economy, Lebensraum, Humanfrei, empty space, absolute monoculture. The campaign of corporate agriculture is a campaign of biological imperialism. Its first goal always is to drive vast numbers of people off their land. This cleansing is accomplished through economic coercion reinforced by violence wherever necessary. (The palm oil wars in Indonesia, Honduras and elsewhere, with “conservation” NGO shills in tow, comprise a typical example.) This is a biological cleansing which transcends all ethnic cleansing. It’s a complete human cleansing without regard to politics, religion, culture, all of whose diversity the system seeks to eradicate. Only the rite of money as prescribed by the theocracy of Mammon can identify one as part of the system. This identification as well, being nothing but conformity to fundamentalist ritual, is monocultured.
Then the natural polyculture of humanity is bulldozed, leveled, crushed, paved over. Everywhere the people are driven into the monoculture of the ghettos, the shantytowns. This is where all culture and spirit are driven to die. This form of concentration camp is the midway goal of money and of the corporate technocratic system. But it’s not the end goal, not according to the corporate personhood logic, and not according to the logic of poison-based agriculture and a system based on poisoned food.
This proximately is what “feed the world” means. That’s the war aim, to drive out all people, all wildness, all physical and genetic diversity. The Earth is to become nothing but commodified spaces and concentration camps. The polyculture of humanity is to be reduced to one shantytown monoculture, non-culture, non-spirit, non-politics.
But even more profoundly than this, the ultimate target of Feed the World propaganda is the mass of Western conformists themselves. They’re led to sense that in their dependency and insecurity, only their total conservatism and conformity can hope to sustain the extremely fragile, vulnerable, unsustainable industrial food system so that it can keep feeding them. Their rejection of GMO labeling is just one lesser example of this don’t-rock-the-boat conservatism. A greater example is their continued religious faith in the regulatory model. Only this conformity, they believe, can save them from being driven into the far more abject and miserable conformity of the tent cities and ghettos, urban and rural, for years now ramifying across the American scene. Here in the middle class West they see more and more of their neighbors economically destroyed and driven hence. The corporate technocracy and its media ministry enforce the fear.
Throughout human history, up until the modern era of extreme energy consumption and high-maintenance technology, the great polyculture of peoples lived according to a natural order, place, and unity. With the rise of capitalism and technocracy and the total victory of the enclosure movement, the historical order and unity have been broken. The goal of the corporate monoculture onslaught is to destroy all human diversity, and all sense of place, unity, control for each group amid this polyculture. Humanity must extrude the new movements to rebuild the polyculture and abolish the corporations. We abolitionists of poison agriculture strive to abolish for reasons of the physical health of humanity and the greater ecology, and for spiritual reasons. We must restore the lost unities amid diversity, the lost places and lands, the lost self-control, self-determination, freedom. We need the will and resolve to continue building the community food sector, the civilization of food sovereignty, the necessary transformation to agroecology. Perhaps we must start at the primal mammalian scale at first, small among the dinosaurs. But eventually and inevitably the renaissance we generate shall inherit the Earth as we restore ourselves to our rightful place within the infinite ecology of Gaia.
Propagate the new and necessary ideas.

September 4, 2017

Labor Day, Not Grinder Day


This image is true, and is symbolic far beyond just agriculture.

We must celebrate real work done toward producing necessary and worthwhile goods and services for healthful, invigorating use for ourselves, our families, our communities. Insofar as Labor Day celebrates this kind of worthwhile work, it’s a worthy holiday. Every day must be the occasion of only such work, and the celebration of such work.
But this doesn’t apply to production of commodities which have nothing at all to do with usefulness to anyone, nothing to do with health and strength of bodies and cultures, more often actively harmful to these, actively destructive of them. The “work”, done according to elite enclosure of resources and access which is then portioned out as private property in the form of “jobs”, which produces only commodities whose only purpose is to increase the wealth and power of those elites, which produces nothing for the individual, family, and community, more often is actively destructive of these, which only uses up the Earth, which takes and takes and gives nothing back, which never creates and only destroys, which renders almost all of us nothing but parasite squatters on the Earth’s surface, fouling and poisoning as we go: This work is destructive and is not to be celebrated. Those who voluntarily participate in such fake work, those who drive and fuel and support productionism and consumptionism, are the grinders. They’re scabs.
(Of course I don’t mean those who truly are economically coerced, but the extent to which we want the universal Sodom.)
And so let us celebrate the true labor of humanity, our creative work which is part of the ecology, wherein we exercise our humanness in the same way every other animal exercises its own ecological nature. And let our work include purging the anti-ecological insanity of the commodity psychosis. This, too, is a milestone on the homeward road.

September 1, 2017

What Can Follow the Modern Age


“Post-modern”: This means that modern civilization is purely nihilistic in the full Nietzschean sense. In the human mind there is no longer any such thing as fact or fiction, truth or falsehood, no moral values, no aesthetic values, no spiritual values, no philosophical values, no political values, no version of what Nietzsche called an order of rank. No religious values; God is Dead.
The vast majority of people still claim to have such values, but all groups and almost all individuals are liars and hypocrites about this. In practice they cherry-pick, self-contradict, and flat out lie according to whim or perceived advantage.
This doesn’t change the physical facts. The main facts are that fossil fuels are finite, and there is no substitute for them; and that civilization cannot indefinitely rape the environment without inevitably provoking a severe correction of itself.
But no one believes in these facts. This collective unbelief is the one stable religious fundamental of modernity. Even those who identify themselves as environmentalists don’t really believe it, just as those who call themselves anti-capitalist aren’t really any such thing.
So then those academics who call themselves “post-modern” study this culture of elemental falsity, their study itself being an example of unbelieving, uncommitted pop culture trivia. Same as everything else in modern culture.
Meanwhile we few who believe in physical, biological reality, we primal mammals laying low in the underbrush while the doomed giant reptiles still lumber about, we know that the reality beyond the modern mass suicidal delusion will never be “post” modern, but the combined restoration of history’s natural course with what’s true and humanly useful from modern philosophy and science: Agroecology, and then a few things worth salvaging. This Renaissance is the only possible future reality, if there’s to be a human future at all.

August 21, 2017

Politics is Dead, Only the Movement Can Bring Life


It’s wishful thinking to believe that all the systemic horrors will, in the near future, quickly collapse. It’s equally wishful to believe that if everyone just sits passively, doing nothing more than “prepping” on an atomized individual level (and usually not even doing that, just talking about it on the internet), the rising turbulence is likely to bring down the elites before it first further guts the people. On the contrary, it’s far more likely that those peak oil Galtians will hang separately because they refused to hang together.
That’s why I insist that the only way we the people can navigate this turbulence with the best chance of adapting to the crises and minimizing the damage is to build the movement which will be simultaneously self-defense, preservation of what little can be salvaged from modernity, and most of all the vehicle of the necessary transformation on the basis of agroecology and other ecological evolutions which are necessary if humanity is to have a future at all. Right now humanity is reduced to the level of the original mammals skulking in the underbrush while giant reptiles still ruled the Earth. So far it looks like no one has any idea other than the remain in that state, even once the reptiles are gone.
It’s also true that the stronger this human movement, the more effectively it can help hasten the downfall of the productionist corporate system. In the same way that economic factors will limit how much fossil fuel ultimately will be extracted and burned, so political factors can, if organized and deployed the right way, also limit this and other aspects of corporate power and ability to sustain itself. That’s one of the main reasons I’ve been so emphatic about the possibilities of fighting it out in the food and agriculture sectors. (Of course I don’t say that political factors have been well organized and deployed so far. On the contrary, almost all “political” people in the West today are morbid cultists of historically disproven electoralism. This is a core reason why Politics is Dead.)
When I ponder the low traffic and sparse comments this site currently receives, I recall how I used to do much better when I wrote about Wall Street. That was also in the years immediately following the 2008 forced crash. More people were more radical, and it’s easier to condemn Wall Street than to think about our food and feel obligated to actually do something about it, where there’s so many opportunities for constructive action even right now. That’s by contrast with opposition to the finance sector, where it’s difficult to see where one could even get started with action.
The other problem is how self-imprisoned everyone has become by social media. It’s a mass disease. But there’s enough of an historical record already to prove that no meaningful thought or action can get off the ground from social media. It can be used as a supplement to thought and organization cultivated elsewhere, as publicity media only. But ideas and initial attempts at organization can only be strangled in the cradle, if they try to arise on social media in the first place.
But try telling that to people, try deprogramming them to get them off Facebook or Twitter and onto more human media platforms. It’s literally like talking to a wall: They won’t even reply to such a proposal, let alone try to make a rational argument. But then, that’s standard for all cultists today. I say this in the knowledge that the blogosphere missed its first big chance to be an incubator of new ideas, mostly because it too became dominated by system “reformists”. But I think the potential remains. I do think the internet has one last chance to be constructive for humanity, while there’s still enough grid electricity to power it and still enough flexibility and open space in the structure for independents and dissidents to evade censorship like Google’s and still effectively propagate a message so that large numbers of motivated users, and in certain cases like food even the unmotivated, can register it. But this space, this frontier, is closing rapidly.
Older Posts »