Tuesday, October 21, 2008

It is interesting. . .

To see the flurry of thoughts and ideas bouncing around out there. More and more every day we seem to hear about the crisis of confidence we face as a society towards the trust we have in each other and our institutions. This crisis in confidence is clearly well founded. Unfortunately, the response seems to be the formation of large numbers of groups out there--all seemingly saying "Trust us! We're building new institutions!" Certainly I'm familiar with the Venus Project, all that Zeitgiest stuff, of course the Large Cap Seasteading guys, and all that. They are very fine at drawing all sorts of nice pictures about what they're going to build. I understand the temptation. When I was in 2cd grade or thereabouts, I was all caught up in UFO's and spaceships and must have drawn blueprints for hundreds. I would proudly show off my plan for a new spaceship with nice little drawing of people growing food in boxes and gymnasiums, and of course somewhere was a squigly device with pumps and smoke that was, the "fusion engine"--or so I'd sagely reply. In fact, they looked a lot like the stuff you will see over there at the Venus Project. In fact, they have one very critical characteristic that is identical. They were, stictly, daydreams. To suggest that such a thing could be built is a entirely differnet issue than will it. Of course anything can hypothetically be built. If we focus on, strictly that which will be built, or on lifestyles that will exist, suddenly the whole picture and the task at hand becomes immediate. We need to get started, immediately, on the immediately beneficial, and the immediately achievable. This is the sole way to a better future.

Of course, central to the issue as well is this. It is a complete waste of time to daydream about ways we personally could live. We must focus on what changes we will make. This and only this engenders progress. It is no good saying that I'm not being visionary enough, or whatever. Visionary thinkers we have no shortage of. We need heroes. We need people that act. Here is our crisis. There is simply no way to anticipate what sorts of options move from the hypothetical world of the possible to the world of the accessible once one has made real steps in that direction. Unfortunately, we have people planning what they will do upon arrival without even lacing up their boots.

Allow me to state the obvious: It isn't visionary in the slightest unless a wholesale attack and complete rejection of materialism as core social value is not central to the vision. It isn't a credible vision, in the slightest, unless real concrete steps towards that vision are evident.

. . .And lastly, none of this will mean a damn thing to you unless these visions and actions aren't personal. . .

Our new institutions will not be formed. They will arise. What they will arise from is the amalgam of each and all of our manifest values and actions. If you want to change the world, get started planting that garden.

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