Culture Change e-Letter
Ideas for a livable tomorrow
7 notions for new year
by Jan Lundberg
First off, defeat polluting. You can
complain about capitalism, but that leaves bureaucracies and individual
"consumers" happy to keep degrading the planet. Today's
industrial culture equals the speeding up of entropy. So, each person must
defeat the polluter within (oneself and within one's family and community and
nation), and then see how to change the rest of the world righteously.
More on defeating polluting in the other six nifty notions for sustainability
Fix your health. If you destroy your
body with cigarettes, eat processed junk that relies on sugar and salt to make
palatable, and sit around in a car or in front of a TV, you're deadening
yourself and becoming a burden on whomever will be stuck taking care of you.
Destroy what destroys you. How can you claim to have good thoughts and
claim to be trying to improve your life, your family's well-being, and saving
the world from militarism and pollution when you're compromising your health?
Or when you tolerate your community's toxification and health-destruction by
some bossy employer lording it over the town?
Promote population stabilization.
More people ain't what the Earth needs! You can say "it's not the
number of people, but their habits" (scarfing down hamburgers, for example)
that matter much more. Well, if other species could talk, they'd say
they'd like to have some room too pleaseand I
don't mean our creations like the cattle, cats, et al. Also
consider, while the U.S. is the gigantic super polluter, and only industrial
nation gaining in population, try and have Congress scale way back the massively
high legal immigration that pleases the corporate union-busting employers so
much. Try adopting a kid rather than getting into somebody's jeans to
spread your genes.
Grow your food, learn to forage for it.
Additionally, when you buy some, don't buy the fruit from South America if
you're in North America or anywhere else outside South America! Next,
notice where in the U.S. your food is from. Trucking oranges from Florida
to the West Coast is insane, except for the profiteer who can occasionally
compete with the West Coast citrus grower. The average piece of food
purchased by the eater in the United States travels 1,300 miles. Buy
non-packaged foods, bring bulk containers to the market, and pedal or walkdriving
can be avoided daily in most places in the U.S.
Move closer to your work, or quit and work
closer or in the home, if you drive to work. Surely you don't like the
idea of killing Iraqis and Afghanis for their oil. Or rewarding the
patriotic car companies and oil corporations. Perhaps you don't know the
arithmetic: the average speed of the U.S. motorist is less than 5 MPH (five
miles per hour), when all the hours of car-related time (working for money to
buy the car, to buy the insurance, to pay for repairs, etc.) are divided into
the miles driven. If you don't drive far away most days, you'll know what
happens in your community. You'll actually have a community, rather than
having an address where you sleep and just enjoy furloughs from the salt mines.
Be an artist or poet. Recognize your
humanity and sensitivity, and flaunt it. If you don't think others would
be impressed, you're probably right. But that doesn't mean you can't do
your art for yourself in your bedroom or under the bridge. And then you
could get good at it, and eventually be fun for others when you turn off their
TV (or the energy dries up and the power goes down). If you tried the
piano, guitar, trombone and singing, and it didn't stick, maybe you had only to
try the violin. Ask someone if he or she can play the violin, and the
person should at least say, "I don't know, I never tried." When
people bring creative skills to share, they shape their own future and improve
ties between fellow villagers or neighbors.