One thing is very clear about our times, we are rapidly depleting a variety of different resources that we rely on to keep our wasteful modern Industrial Civilization afloat, this rapid depletion is based on a model of consumption and economic growth that foolishly believes the world to have infinite resources. We have if you like stepped out of the human needs and well being zone, and stepped into one of illogical consumption based on the unquestioned assumptions that we are somehow entitled and justified in buying the constant stream of stuff that we buy, and stamping on those below us to ensure that we get it. This behavior has little to do with human nature, and everything to do with human nurture, this behavior has been taught to us through the media, through industrial psychologists and through sly and underhanded Marketing strategies. The way we live when locked into this consumer mode suits those who control the resources that are vital for human life, the more we consume, the more we line their pockets with out hard earned cash. And we are at a very dangerous point in History, not just because we are using up anything in sight for the sake of an individuals profit and material wealth, but also because the people in charge have no consideration for either people and planet, we now exist within a framework governed by anti-human economics. The strong thread of anti-science that informs the Neoliberal mind is ignoring all of the data about our changing climate, about species extinction and resource depletion, poverty, because the psychopathic bottom line for them is profit at whatever cost, human or otherwise.
But despite this very dire situation, the fight back is gathering momentum on a global, and this fightback is diverse in its methods and massive in terms of those who are engaging in it All across the surface of the earth there are: people looking at new ways of trading their skills and produce, community empowerment and development, where food growing is a focal point for bringing people together, and provide people with a regular ongoing source of freshly grown produce set against a background of manufactured scarcity, then there is the upsurge in the cooperative movement with hundreds of workers cooperatives springing up every other week that run a variety of different community services such as Pubs, greengrocers and cafes, whilst these cooperative services are thriving, those locked into the Neoliberal model are failing because they are simply not wealthy enough to matter, or they are in debt because of how they have been cajoled into running their businesses, or plain old greed. The idea of ‘The Commons‘ where cultural and natural resources are accessible to all members of the community is also drawing huge numbers of people towards its way of thinking and doing, these ways of seeing and doing in the world are moving at such a rapid rate because people understand that these systems and ideas are geared towards the well being of people, and that they offer resilience in an economic world that is shocked, fractured and deeply flawed in its methods and abilities to provide for our human needs and well being. And importantly they are ideas that can be turned into practical solutions that we can engage in right now. But perhaps one of the biggest developments in looking for alternatives to the slash and burn linear madness of Neoliberalism has come from Permaculture, similarly Permaculture design has flourished because once people grasp the basics of it and look at the world through the principles and ethics of permaculture, it soon becomes clear that this system of design and thinking offers multiple and accessible integrated low impact solutions to our problems, whilst at the same time providing us with an abundance of outputs from our forest gardens and permaculture growing spaces. So if we look at different areas of human existence, cooperatives offer us a democratic, people centred and egalitarian way of organizing the work that we do as human beings, the commons ensures that cultural and natural resources are accessible to all members of a society, and permaculture offers us universal ethics and principles on how can best build human settlements that are integrated into the landscape and add to, rather than take away the well being of our localized eco-systems. In lay terms we are talking about a series of interrelated ideas and practices that are capable of developing communities, providing local food either free of charge or at very little cost, developing and enhancing eco systems, providing local or home power generation, freedom from debt and the toil of employment. For me personally the exciting bit is that it is pointless waiting for the political will for all of this to happen, and whilst its great that there are many out there protesting and fighting back against the anti-human Philosophies and actions of ‘the Capitalism on steroid’s model adopted by our corporate world leaders, there are also many out there who are beginning to actually design and create a fairer and resilient world that enhances develops well being for both people and planet, the transition is in full swing, our job is to keep on keeping on, and to continue to connect with people, form alliances and associations and remove ourselves and others from the locked in effect of the economic model that enslaves us all and kills the planet on a daily basis. If we want this process of change to continue accelerating we have to move out of our comfort zones, broaden our circle of friends and offer practical helps to those who are powerless, a Politicians promise is nothing more than carefully selected words to win votes, where as your helping someone to set up a fruit and veg garden creates and brings about real change in the here and now.