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Pedal Power solutions to petroleum dependence and polluting vehicles: Arcata Library Bikes, Pedal Power Produce, and more!

CAOE - Committee Against Oil Exploration - stop offshore oil drilling to protect sensitive habitats and cut petroleum dependence.

Culture Change through music! The Depavers eco-rock!

Take our Pledge for Climate Protection and learn about the Global Warming Crisis Council.

SEI hometown action!
Arcata city council's proclamation against war on Iraq and Kyoto Protocol proclamation.

Overpopulation has become a reality.  Overpopulation Resources and News Tidbits

Sail Transport Network

Fact Sheets
Press Releases

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Culture Change

A nonviolent scenario
Ready for deep revolution?

When the gasoline pump dries up

When the human mind opens to possibilities without oil

This will signal the cultural revolution of all time


Unmatched for speed and reaching to every colonial outpost of Petroleum Civilization

Old and new ways will be held up to the light

Some will see only darkness and the rest a new opportunity


What will be the flavor of the transition?

Tears are enough, blood we don’t need shed

But will petro-fed masses starve peacefully?


Who will be in charge of this revolution?  No one.

No one can hasten it, but is tomorrow soon enough?

We can understand it, prepare, and welcome it, or cling to a collapsing order that can offer no more


The pain of the Earth, if that exists, will shift but lift

So much waste and theft will cease when false wealth slips its grip

As we clean up the mess, we rejoice in having to share


Off will go television, computer and refrigerator as energy is dedicated to essential survival tasks and little else

Rediscovering our brains and talents we will meet basic needs, while we forget our cancer-generating ways

Simultaneous restoration of the ravaged land will occupy us


Good luck to you in being a part of the whole cycle of adventure

A beautiful planet could not accommodate several billion anyway

Learning will accelerate as we watch the few preserved ancient trees continue to grow and become top soil for new life


So many have guns today they intend to use if and when necessary

When their ammunition runs out, the gun and bullet factories will be useful for other purposes or abandoned, with no more unlimited electric power

The human tribe did not go through long evolution by killing and cheating itself


Before the fall, one sang:

"I think it’s most peculiar to be using these machines

When eating sleeping loving and a home is what we need…"


There is no ahead or going back

When the living Earth and its glorious inanimate elements are a constant process

Progress and return are linear ideas obscuring the now and the best possibilities


The real priorities would be to gather acorns and enjoy their life-giving nourishment

Growing food will take more human work and love and responsibility; despite such limitations without fossil-fuels, 

Future generations will retain the same or better world we will now care for and use in balance


Welcome any cool fog and cheer the rain albeit falling harder from climate change’s supercharged evaporation

Uncover the asphalt, expose and recreate the creeks. 

Fill in this last line as you please; it’s for you


I wrote the above on a Greyhound bus around Los Gatos near Santa Cruz, in what some call Ecotopia.

It is hoped that my twelve stanzas of visualizing cultural revolution will be worthy to someone, about something, in the cosmic struggle.  For instance, between installations (now out my window) such as Camp Roberts | Army California Guard and any of its suspect intentions, on one side, and on the other side kindness and reason promoted and practiced by peacemakers.  Rather than a clash of entities, we are witnessing the beginning of wholesale decay and rapid transformation.

When a society bases its raison d’être on material wealth for individuals (limited to comprising only a portion of the population), wealth is used up relatively quickly for the whole population, eventually including even today’s wealthy.  

Rather than a poor class taking the wealth from the rich, the rich will lose their grip by virtue of losing access to “unlimited” petroleum and the exploited labor of the globalized corporate system.  People will wake up to living their own lives to the fullest, for they must manage issues on their own in concert, leaving behind the discredited ways that have brought us to the precipice that we have in part already jumped off.

There are many kinds of concerted action appropriate now, but they lack the necessary social context to take place on a large scale.  However, many kinds of direct action — such as workers' going on strike — can achieve wide notice and an economic effect.  Clearly, though, successful concerted action will have to wait for faster-changing conditions that most of society will be aware of and dealing with.  Small actions resulting in arrests, as well as actions that break no laws, appear to offer little basis for useful response today.  I thought of a good form of concerted, high-profile action when I began this paragraph, but it slipped my mind despite my waiting three days to remember.  This may prove that circumstances are premature for instructive concerted action in the eyes of the as yet unstirred masses.  I promise to pass along the idea (which was not original or spectacular) if I can in a future essay or song.

– Depaver Jan

January 2004  California


Read Ecotopia by Ernest Callenbach 

Back to Home Page

Jan Lundberg's columns are protected by copyright; however, non-commercial use of the material is permitted as long as full attribution is given with a link to this website, and he is informed of the re-publishing:


Articles of interest:
Anti-globalization protest grows, with tangible results.  WTO protests page

Tax fossil-fuel energy easily
by Peter Salonius

UK leader calls War on Terror "bogus"

Argentina bleeds toward healing by Raul Riutor

The oil industry has plans for you: blow-back by Jan Lundberg

It's not a war for oil? by Adam Khan

How to create a pedestrian mall by Michelle Wallar

The Cuban bike revolution

How GM destroyed the U.S. rail system excerpts from the film "Taken for a Ride".

"Iraqi oil not enough for US: Last days of America?"

Depaving the world by Richard Register

Roadkill: Driving animals to their graves by Mark Matthew Braunstein

The Hydrogen fuel cell technofix: Spencer Abraham's hydrogen dream.

Ancient Forest Protection in Northern California . Forest defenders climb trees to save them.

Daniel Quinn's thoughts on this website.

A case study in unsustainable development is the ongoing crisis in Palestine and Israel.

Renewable and alternative energy information.

Conserving energy at home (Calif. Title 24)



Culture Change/Sustainable Energy Institute mailing address: P.O. Box 3387 , Santa Cruz , California 95063 USA
  Telephone 1-215-243-3144 (and fax)

Culture Change (Trademarked) is published by Sustainable Energy Institute (formerly Fossil Fuels Policy Action), a nonprofit, 501(c)(3) California non-stock corporation. Contributions are tax-deductible.