Greetings to all Occupiers in this cafe.

The "Core Conversation" thread seems to be rife with talk of a different structure and process for what we call our "economy." I am creating this thread with the idea of hauling all that rich conversation over here and re-opening the Core Conversation thread to an exploration of other topics that might one day grow up to be their own threads as well.

Here is where we can critique the old economy if that is your bent, thrash out the meaning and structure of a new economy, the values we hold most dear about energy exchange with our world that truly values the others who share this world, whether it is by legislation or by grass-roots one-brick-at-a-time rebuilding. What needs tweaking? What needs to be discarded.

How do we begin? What are the steps? Where is it happening already? 

Here are some resources I am familiar with:



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"Bu technology isn’t going anywhere. Plus, isn’t the point of evolution to get to the point where we are able to go beyond the boundaries of the Earth and see who and what else is out there?"


I've quoted two sentences, but the whole paragraph is problematic.

Technology requires energy, both to operate and to come into play.  Energy depletion is quite advanced.  Is all the technology in place?  How will replacement equipment come into play?  How will it be powered?  Technology may be going away; not all, but much.  We cannot know quantity and timing.

The point of evolution is probably the last thing humans are going to agree on.  That is to say, they will not.  I never thought and do not expect to think that leaving this planet is the point of our being.

Because we can, with the equipment of our personal systems, observe and count what's living around us, we are able to assess the health of local systems.  Now that people are everywhere, if everyone comes around to responsibility for local systems, all systems may recover from insults and injuries.

The processing power is in place(s)!

"Can I ask what you think the point of us being alive is?"

This blog you liked is part of the answer.  I'll add that I also buy Stephen R. Covey's formulation:  "To live, to love, to learn and to leave a legacy."

"Energy is abundant on the planet - have you seen the advances in solar energy David? We HAVE the ability to power this planet completely cleanly."

For more than 30 years, I longed for the Solar Age to begin.  Not long ago, we put PV and a thermal system on our roofs here.  Now the inhumane big system has drained so much from so many that I don't think many will be able to follow us.  On top of that, I keep learning about the pollution (toxics)  and poor EROEI (energy return on energy invested) associated with production of renewable energy devices.  Please point me to better news, if it's reliable.



Perhaps I misunderstood your reference to technology not serving us.


It resonated with me "Occuy technology" in connection with so much that is wrong about how we fund and use science and technology:


genetically modified seed

harmful chemicals and fertilzers

technology and science control by the Phrama Biggies who are about profits not wellness

our own instaable addiction to techno gadegets which has really fueld and supported the consumerism/debt laden economy of the past decade +  our economy is really founded in many ways on endlessly rapidly redundant compuers..which should be a good thing. butthe point of advancements shouldn't be to get eople to sepnd more but on serving life and serving local communities.(eg shouldn't some of that tech development be about 100% access to the internet which is now recognized as a fundamental human right by the U.N...shouldn't we be putting our R&D supportbehind a "laptop for evry man" ( as lap top for evry child ..developing an easy to use and afforadble lap top.


Did I misunderstand your concern and intent?.



Agree this is a harder way to communicate..

Good, yes on the same track then and what Robert has added is definitely part of what a thriveable economy is. Technology should not be only to generate profitit shouldn't exist only to feed an economy based on consumerism.

Laying it off to "the monetary system" is true in the sense that all we use and consume is controlled by a few at the top and we the tax payers subsidize this broken system.We have allowed essential human, medicine,to be privatized under the control of  a few; .  We have allowed resources "in the common"..ourwater ,our natural resources ( including coal& oil) to be privtaized and used fro profit against the common good and we pay for that with our taxes,

The operative words here though Kimberly are "we have allowed"..none of this happens without the consent of the governed..All of this happens with our consent.Just by revamping the patent system and shifting supported medical research back to universities we could free up trillions of dollars and have better cheaper medicines that serve humanity and serve life..Just by banning all known carcingoens from use and consumption we can free up trillions of dollars.  Why do we still allow the production and sale of tobacco?

But we allow all this..we the people. it all happens with our active conset because we have not stayed awake, paid attention and directed our economy to serve life .

The change that needs to happen is in us. We need to reclaim our place in governance.


In fact, though we are all complicit in the current malaise, little of what passes for modern culture has been created by common consent. 

Consent implies knowing, conscious agreement. In most of our culture, we the people have either unconsciously acquiesced or been manipulated into compliance - using a combination of fear and addiction. 

The public relations, or advertising, industry was almost single-handedly created by Edward Louis Bernays (1891- 1995), nephew of Sigmund Freud. He combined the ideas of Gustave Le Bon and Wilfred Trotter on crowd psychology with the psychoanalytical ideas of his uncle, as well as Pavlov's conditioning techniques, and was one of the first to attempt to manipulate public opinion using the subconscious. He called this science "propaganda" (which was the title of his book on the subject). 

He used these techniques, first, to convince the American people to support our involvement in the First World War, and then to convince the other half of our population (women) to smoke cigarettes. He called this the 'engineering of consent'. He felt this manipulation was necessary in society, which he regarded as irrational and dangerous as a result of the 'herd instinct'. (He was as anti-democratic and technocratic as is the Zeitgeist Movement today). 

The Civil War was not fought to abolish slavery, but merely to supercede it with another, more pernicious (because less obvious) form of slavery: wage slavery. Then, to put down the populist and communist resistance to corporate plutocracy of the 1890s and 1930s, a large percentage of wage slaves were allowed access to enough material wealth to anesthetize them to their enslavement (a middle class was created as a buffer between the dispossessed and the elite) and FDR pushed through a progressive agenda to assuage the masses and protect his class. 

To little of modern culture have "we the people" consented. But we are all complicit and this pyramid scheme is supported by those at the base. 

You categorize "we the people" as "tax-payers", though wage taxation (like consumerism) is one of the principle tools of our complicity in our own oppression. Death may be inevitable, but paying the ruling elite a tithe is not. Most pay, not out of obligation, but out of fear. A powerful act of non-violent non-cooperation would be the mass refusal to pay taxes unto Caesar. 

I have refused to pay federal income taxes for 32 years, and I am far freer because of it (though poor by the world's material standards).


Humans are makers and users of technology no matter what.  I have a very broad definition that includes language, paradigms and myths, but popular use of the term has come to imply animation by fuel or electricity.  Where the implication fits, I worry about dependence, not so much about utilization and enjoyment while it lasts.

Since I bought the energy depletion story, I am using the internet to encourage awareness and preparation for a powerdown era that 7 billion people never shared before.

well said Kimberly and all part of what we have been trying to describe as thriveable economies..

I would go one step further and take personal actionthat will bring this into being..stop buying anything that isn't local and certified organic. Shop at farmer's markets not supermarkets.  Grow what you can yourself.

I love mangoes, baby bananas and avocado  but I live in Maine.

We can all stop immediately buying any bottled water.

We can all stop immediately buying or using any plastics of any kind...sorry folks that includes polartec which is an oil based synthetic.


A thriveable RBE means we aline our values with our actions in each and every choice we make..each and every purchase we make.


That's it!!! That's the "way home"

Hope you are giving some thougt to hosting a conversation here at Occupy Cafe on "Occupy Technology"?

Also a critical critical heart of a thrivable economy.


well you are doing just fine in this conversation and moderating a discussion..starting one doesn't require anything more than you are already bringing here to us, Kimberly.

You have obviously given some thought to  ho wtechnology has enslaved us rather than served us..and you obviously have a moral commitment to a different place for technology in our lives.


Many others will support and work withyou n exploring this important issue you have pointed us to.

Ah Yes David.


We are on the same page.


Government jobs programs tend to go for bulk rather than building in incentives and support and inclusiveness for the kind of "work" that hopefully exists for all in local communities.


You have instructed me on a fine point here.


Henceforth I will use the word "work"

Jobs is very different and not what we want at all in a thrivable economy.:

I won't use that word any more as something we want to have in our thivable economy.

Thanks for the heads up!

I'm glad I could be of assistance, Lindsay (who referred to this).  The distinction between work to do and job to find/keep is significant, as you acknowledge.  If more and more grasp it, widespread victimization may steadily give way to wholesome and sustainable service and production, self-selected.

An extended discussion of some of these matters at the Transition in Action site.


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