I could take this to the predictable diatribe about inequality, resource usage, greed, etc.… But I really want to talk about psychology, forgiveness, trust, and consequences.
The Short GameThat is all there really is, the short game, there is no long game. If there were our situation would look drastically different.
The short game is all about gaining, about having, and yes, about winning. It is about security that can never be attained, about broken bonding, about fear, and about entitlement based on detachment from our shared humanity. The scary part is that we (our cultural frameworks messaging) holds this up as success… That is changing and Robin Leach has gone by the wayside with his lifestyles of the Rich and Famous, but the legacy remains. The belief that financial gain will provide the security you need to feel safe is a myth, and one the Myth-busters need to put a stake through once and for all. Alright, no more pop-culture references…
Here is the thing, while I am not a psychologist, it seems to me that the “success” behavior in this scenario borders on narcissism? I believe that the most successful think they are the only ones exhibiting this behavior, or that nobody else’s needs matter against their own need.
A word about Cognitive DissonanceCognitive dissonance is the perception of contradictory information. Relevant items of information include a person’s actions, feelings, ideas, beliefs, values, and things in the environment. Cognitive dissonance is typically experienced as psychological stress when persons participate in an action that goes against one or more of those things.* from Wikipedia
More simply, humans can believe that two (or more) mutually exclusive things are equally true, and it completely screws us up. This gives advertising, news media, corporate messaging, religion, politicians, and all the other current and potential manipulators of our lives the tools they need to keep us divided and working against our own best interest. Yes, I am going to use the H word here, against our own HUMANITY!
This affects us all, every one of us, that includes you! The work necessary to address this is enormous, and it means that you need to unplug until you can get some perspective. The good news is that once you get some perspective the work gets easier, though it never ends. The whisper is always there, and the message has been refined for centuries, as has the programming we all receive throughout our lives.
What does this have to do with Co-opting our future for quarterly profits? It is the means by which it can be done without tar and feathers being involved.
Schooling vs Education and LearningSchooling, compulsory education, was developed in the early 20th century through initiatives and investments by the industrial powers of the time, and based on a Prussian model, to create workers with enough knowledge to be useful, and enough indoctrination to be compliant… I know that this comes as a huge surprise to most of you. To get some depth on this subject I recommend reading John Taylor Gatto’s, Underground History of American Education.
While schools teach English, Math and History they do so in a way that is very difficult to absorb beyond the very basics. If they did not do this we might use the tools we learned to ask questions, add up the results and see how historically the cycles have repeated.
Is this a conspiracy? Yes and no… It was certainly collaborative in the beginning, but what we have now is a culmination of the process, and acceptance of the rightness of it. It is creating a crisis we cannot even see coming and whose effects will, very soon, be felt in every corner of America.
We have bought into this system to such a degree, along with the myth of wealth, that we line up to send our children to school, university and higher education, like parts on a conveyor belt, accumulating back breaking debt. Degrees that have been devaluing by the month, into a market that has degraded to the point where the degree gets your kids jobs at minimum wage.
So… we have schooling, and degree with no jobs or real skills.
Here is the crisis: We have done this at the cost of the “Blue Collar” labor, apprenticeship. skill acquisition, unions, jobs etc. How is this a crisis?
· Wastewater treatment workers are aging out with nobody to replace them
· Power linemen are aging out with no replacements
· Plumbers are three weeks minimum to answer calls, even critical ones
· All of the trades have waiting lists of weeks, even months
We send our children to college to have a better future? To have a good paying job? This is the promise we have been told even when the reality is far from this illusion… And the bill is due in so many ways.
Maybe it is time to review our belief systems, and ask the questions we were schooled not to ask?
Forgive Yourself!That is all, Forgive Yourself!
You had no control over the process, but you have a choice now. You can spend your cycles beating yourself up, feeling guilty, feeling remorse or, you can begin to change the future, starting with yourself.
Which is a more useful path to take?
Trusting is hard, until you embrace your humanityRight about now, if you are absorbing this article, you are feeling defensive, antagonized, angry, depressed, or some dark feeling not easily identified.
I would ask you to embrace trust! Yes, a lot of what I have said is depressing, but you will never move forward from that starting point.
Forgive yourself for what you had no control over, and trust that if you do the work, starting now, you will end up in a better place. A healthier place, with good relationships, community, and empowerment.
Are you asking what I am selling? I would be asking that right now…
I am selling you on the idea that there are other, better, more human paths into the future…
If you want to support this work, as well as doing it yourself, there will be a Patreon link at the end, and at some point in 2022, a book if you would like to read more about this.
Right now, I want you to make some choices, but before I get to that I want to discuss some outcomes, consequences if you will:
Staying this course, the one we are currently on:We live on a single planet with fixed resources… think about that.
Capitalism, requires and ever expanding consumer base to exist and grow. Think about that along with the fixed resources…
Climate Change is real and accelerating
Our focus on industrialization and profiting on all things humans require to survive is slowly, or not so slowly, destroying the foundations on which we live.
Soil erosion will continue to increase until we cannot grow food.
Monoculture will continue to degrade nutritional values.
Water will continue to be polluted and treatment will continue to lag due to lack of innovation and investment until we are drinking diluted poison.
Systems will fail in cascading fashion, as these dominos fall.
Continuing homelessness and financial collapse. If we cannot afford it now…
This is by no means a complete list, but it is enough to provide the end result… human extinction.
Choosing a Humancentric PathThis is where I talk about the framework of change looking like a jigsaw puzzle that has the edges done but needs you to bring your piece of this puzzle, remember the mention of empowerment above. Your piece is needed to determine what the picture will become.
Here are some of the elements:
Learning (real learning)
A humancentric foundation
The choice is yours, the how to is being co-developed, by us and you! The information and links below will provide information, thought pieces, and resources.
Please subscribe for more articles!
For more information:
Conduit Podcasts: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCfi8AuMV1eag_XM9IBfaBmw/videos
Interview on Outlaw Radio
Support the work:
Become a Patron: https://www.patreon.com/resilientcommunities
Donate to our fundraiser: https://www.gofundme.com/f/2c3xm-building-community-resilience
Thank you for your time, see you on the road!
Mark Boatwright-Frost Executive Director of Resilient Ecosystems, champion of community resilience. It is all about coming together and finding commonality, build capacity and thrive