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What is your POSITIVE vision for the future?

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  • Thu, Apr 30, 2009 - 11:52am

    #11
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    Re: What is your POSITIVE vision for the future?

A return to "good news".

We’re so numbed by the constant bad news floating over the media channels that it’s really hard to stay positive.
This demoralization has got to go. I know it’s not as exciting the pandamonium out there, but I’m looking forward to the days where people mind their own business again, and "news" is "Oh! So and so had her baby" or "Summer Festival in two weeks".

In short, I’m hoping the world slows down some, big government retracts to it’s proper proportions (that’s to say, becomes small government) and people cast off this morbid fascination with bad news.

Cheers!

Aaron

PS – this is in addition to all the other suggestions already made.
The great thing is, this isn’t "idealism" – it’s the once and future standard of life.

  • Thu, Apr 30, 2009 - 02:28pm

    #12
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    Re: What is your POSITIVE vision for the future?

Great topic, Chris. Thanks.

It’s been only 2 weeks since I listened to the CC. But I’ve known since high school in the 70s that the world was doomed. I think the Population Bomb gave me on that insight. I also realized that people (in masse) will not give up their comfort and convenience (and pillaging of the planet) until forced. In fact, I’ve been so disillusioned by the state of the world, I mostly gave up. My wife had to talk me into making the weekly run to the dump with the recyclables (I doubted they were even being recycled). 

Well, the time has come when we will all soon be forced to change. At first I was shaken to realize that our world isn’t built on human ingenuity but rather on the one time gift of cheap energy. I admit that I have enjoyed this gift. I do very specialized work that I love. I’ve got lots of high tech gadgets and gear. I love the convenience and comfort of our oil world. 

BUT I also see a VERY flawed world around me. And I am now realizing that the same oil that gave us the wonderful gift of it’s magnificent power, has also spurred a load of troubles. I really only know US culture, so I’ll speak to that. I think the world is terribly alienating. I think most people do not enjoy their work. I can barely name a job I would want to have. I find corporations stifling and inhuman. They are built on the model of people as replaceable modules. I don’t think most people get a sense of being needed and valued from work. It’s impersonal and political and back stabbing by design. 

I think the playing field is badly uneven. The people who know how to manipulate and exploit the power of oil make way too much money while other hard workers report day in and out to meaningless jobs just to scrape by. Despite progress, minorities are still exploited. 

Individuality has gone too far. While we have enjoyed great innovation from this, there is a general spirt if competition and mistrust. A general lack of community and basic loss of humor and friendliness. 

Also, the world is too complex. It’s too confusing and lends itself to anxiety. Watching the news is upsetting. Depending on systems we do not understand for our very survival is unconsciously unsettling.

And none of this is to mention the strife and starvation and oppression in other counties.

There is also the continuous and frightening consolidation of wealth and power. The destruction of the earth itself. The out of control credit based hollow consumerism.

Oh yeah, and then there is war.

I don’t know that a post oil world will be free of all this, but I can’t help think a lot of it will be better. There won’t be much to fight over. I don’t know how power and wealth can be consolidated when most things are being done locally. We won’t need to wage war in the middle east. We may not need to wage war at all. There won’t that much for which nations will compete and fight. You can’t hoard the wind and sun.

Our work will all be meaningful. No more jobs making cheap plastic toys for carnivals in other countries. No more factory assembly lines. Much less pressure to speed the lines of production to maximize profits. Much less pressure and leverage to exploit workers for profit. Goodbye climate controlled profit driven corporate offices and the bizarre and mechanized culture they breed.

People will produce stuff we need and will be appreciated for it. When your windmill stops working, you will want to have the guy who fixes it over for dinner when he is done. You will pick wildflowers for the gal who can show you how to fix your roof or raise a cow or dig a well. Our work will matter, and we will feel valued. And that is more important to the spirit than money. In fact, I will go so far as to suggest that the whole reason we want to make a lot of money in the first place is that it makes us feel valued. There is no actual need for money in that equation, just appreciation.

We will appreciate what we have. A piece of fresh bread and butter will taste better than a big mac once we really know what it takes to make. We won’t take things for granted and that will make us grateful. We will be forced out of our shells and into relationship with our neighbors. We will again know community. We will be known. We will be seen and depended upon. And that will make us fulfilled. And the scale will be much smaller. Many scientists believed we evolved in, and are best suited for, communities of 200/250 people. There is an anxiety in coexisting in cites surrounded by millions of people. It will be mayberryesque.

The playing field will be leveled. Being born into the right family won’t be as important. What you can do, and what you know will be the determining factor. Blue collar workers will be as valuable as management. Race won’t be as important. There won’t be that much to hoard and defend. We’ll be in it together and everyone will be needed.

The very pace and rhythm of life for slow down. Gone will be the constant march to grow, to have more, to keep up, to stay fashionable, to compete, to be better. Most of that is consumer based behavior. There won’t be much of a top. And life at whatever top there is will not be blasted in our faces constantly by the salesmen of a product driven society.

The earth will purify. It will again be allowed to breathe. It will be given a chance to heal. We will live guilt free and without causing harm. We will not by drowning in opulence while others starve. We will eat an appropriate amount of food and get plenty of exercise. We will be healthier. We won’t have to try to stay thin. The news will be much better. The media circus and celebrity culture will be gone. There will be no benefit to frighten or entertain us with the news. There will be no heap of products to advertise and sell.

I could go on, but these are some of the thoughts I have and why I am actually looking forward to a change and have been my whole life. I realize there was lots of strife before fossil fuel, and mankind can be power hungry and brutal. But we never knew what we know now. We struggled for everything. Life was hard. People couldn’t read. There was no body of knowledge stored in books. AND the only energy slaves were animals, and some mechanical hydro and wind. I envision a post oil world that is full of renewable energy. Not anywhere near the amount of energy we have now, but enough for the essentials. There will be enough for medicine and heat and literacy and some transportation and musical instruments and enough specialization to allow for some arts and for new technology.

Running out of oil is actually necessary. We are rapidly destroying the planet and it’s many creatures in what is largely an misguided quest to feel fulfilled. With some luck (along with a lot of deep planning and hard work), I think human life could be better than it ever has been. The trick is the transition. We have to build an infrastructure to build renewable energy. And we have to be ready. Once oil prices start to go up, we will all be anxious to make the switch–even the doubters and politicians. It will be the only thing that makes sense. And hopefully, the population can decline naturally, in the same way it has boomed. 

David

  • Thu, Apr 30, 2009 - 02:40pm

    #13
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    Re: What is your POSITIVE vision for the future?

DTM: By all means, please feel free to use the post in your newsletter!

Aaron: You’re exactly right.  Transition isn’t a pipe dream.  It’s the way we’ve lived for most of history, and the way we’ll have to live again when the oil runs out.  What we do have some control over is how we get from here to there.  That’s what the Transition movement is about.

David: Thank you for sharing your heartfelt vision of the future.  That is a world worth living in!  I found myself nodding my head and saying "yes" repeatedly throughout your post.   

  • Thu, Apr 30, 2009 - 10:25pm

    #14
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    Re: What is your POSITIVE vision for the future?

I think change is my positive vision…. or to be more specific, the passing of some of the existing political and economic idealogies that have dominated the world for at least the past few decades, and bringing in new possibilities/opportunities that the existing status quo has made difficult or impossible. This nation, and arguably the world, has been in a state of stagnation in many ways.  And while there’s no guarantees regarding how the future state of affairs will turn out, at least with the old status quo gone we all get the CHANCE to make it a better one. 

And I’ve mentioned this before elsewhere, but on the more down-to-earth level I see the largest corporations eventually dying or diminishing in power (the gov’t can’t support them indefinitely… though it certainly now seems as though they’ll try), creating a void for entrepreneurs and local business owners to fill in the long term future.  In the short term it certainly seems like the cards are stacked against the small business owner (and getting worse daily), but for those that CAN survive the next couple years and readily adapt to new conditions there will likely be abundant opportunities.  I’m currently saving everything I can (most of it away from the dollar and other fiat currencies) in anticipation for such an opportunity. 

I really like this discussion of the positive visions for the future… along with just keeping spirits up, it also helps keep us from universally being branded "doomers" and being dismissed out of hand. 

– Nickbert

  • Thu, Apr 30, 2009 - 10:46pm

    #15
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    Re: What is your POSITIVE vision for the future?

 SWF = "Strong [something] Families"  (If Cat has ‘families staying together [less divorce]’)??

Great thread.  Have to mull my + vision and get back…

Viva — Sager

  • Thu, Apr 30, 2009 - 11:00pm

    #16
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    Re: What is your POSITIVE vision for the future?

[quote=ccpetersmd]

[quote=cat233]

[quote=ccpetersmd]

Great list, Chris. But, is SWF single white females, or what?

[/quote]

Peter,

In my seminar notes at that point, I have… Families staying together (less divorce).

Cat

[/quote]

Seems to me that more single females would increase the divorce rate!

What does SWF stand for?

[/quote]

Hello Doc –

My notes say "staying with family"

  • Thu, Apr 30, 2009 - 11:01pm

    #17
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    Re: What is your POSITIVE vision for the future?

[quote=SagerXX]

 SWF = "Strong [something] Families"  (If Cat has ‘families staying together [less divorce]’)??

Great thread.  Have to mull my + vision and get back…

Viva — Sager

[/quote]

Dude, thanks for trying! I’m stumped by SWF. Shockwave flash, single white female…

  • Sat, May 02, 2009 - 04:40am

    #18
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    Re: What is your POSITIVE vision for the future?

Great topic!

1) I do NOT see hordes of radioactive cannibalistic mutants running around, non radioactive is another question.

2) I will get lots of target practice as long as my ammo holds up.

3) Fewer reality TV shows.

Those are the top three things I see so far. 🙂

Ed

(Sorry about the hijack but I felt like making a joke!)

 

 

 

  • Sat, May 02, 2009 - 09:59pm

    #19
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    Re: What is your POSITIVE vision for the future?

I’ve been thinking a lot lately about the difference between "religious" and "living the spiritual life"

My hope for this crisis is that, somehow, we (That is to say, all of us; The whole Human Race) can learn more about living a spiritual life, and begin to walk away from "being religious". Of all the things that Jesus said, I think…..Well, wait……..Never mind. I just think that we need to get away from this thinking of "us" and "them" – I had a supervisor one time who always said whenever somebody started to point fingers, "They is we." Wouldn’t that be great if we lived that way as humanity? "They" is "We"

I am so fed up with "The Church" (The whole institution, not just a particular building or body of worshippers) that I’m very nearly to the point of walking away entirely. I think The Church is missing one of the greatest opportunities of all time right now. Surely, someone in my church knows how to grow a garden. I daresay I’m an expert at composting. Someone else there is experimenting with solar technology, or something. There’s a little old lady down the street, somewhere, that’s going to need some homegrown tomatoes, and another would love a little compost pile in her backyard. Another needs a vehicle repaired. Right now, CM has put together this really neat community on the internet, but it’s unlikely that I’m going to go from Texas to Australia to learn about Permaculture. What if the church pulled its collective head out, stopped worrying about numbers of heads that walk through the door, and started preparing people now?

(Now to answer to the obvious point the critics are thinking: Why don’t YOU do something instead of just complaining?) I am currently germinating an idea for a men’s ministry. I hope to be able to speak to men who are trapped in internet porn, and are dying inside. We recently had a small setback in our plan, and I need to re-visit the idea with my pastor to get a new direction.

Mercy is more important than sacrifice; Forgiveness is important enough to do times without number; Showing grace to someone who doesn’t deseve it is more important that being at church 52 Sundays a year; Love your neighbor as you love yourself; Do unto others….

OK, OK; I’ve gotten a little preachy here. Let me climb down from the soapbox and summarize: 

In a nutshell – More spiritual, less religious.

  • Sun, May 03, 2009 - 02:12pm

    #20
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    Re: What is your POSITIVE vision for the future?

I guess my positive vision boils down to authenticity —

We’ll all be very busy procuring the essentials of life that there’ll be pretty much no time/effort for the meaningless [email protected] that gobbles up so much of peoples’ time in this era.  Being devoted to the essentials will bring an immediacy and meaning to day-to-day life.  We won’t hear this half of a cell-phone convo anymore:  [ring]  "Hey dude." … "Nothin’…you?" … "Yeah." … "Allright…call you later."

We’ll have to interact meaningfully all day long, about things that matter.  A lot of neurosis will go bye-bye.  People will bond more deeply.  Instead of chasing some "American Dream" handed down from on high, folks will dream their own dreams, and pursue them instead.  

Not terribly eloquent…but I’ve not had any coffee and the braim…I mean:  brain, has yet to boot up properly.

Viva — Sager

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