Thursday, April 30, 2015

Converge with us!

An occupation at a central urban location could serve at least three purposes:

1) Providing safety, community, and other basic aspects of a decent existence, for those who currently lack them.

2) Creating a hub for socializing, coordinating projects, etc. - for any activity that can benefit from the availability of a 24-hour, centrally located meeting place.

3) Spurring progress toward more optimal organizational methods in society at large. Organizational methods centered around violence and domination still hold sway around the world, to different degrees in different places. We can participate in the important and fascinating project of cultural evolution by creating spaces where voluntary, cooperative organizational methods are practiced, refined, and demonstrated.

Tuesday, April 21, 2015

sharpie revolution

A couple days ago, or so, I found a sharpie on the ground at a train stop. I tested it, it worked, I put it in my pocket.

Then I walked a couple blocks, and noticed, in the window of a zine shop, several copies of stolen sharpie revolution A DIY RESOURCE FOR ZINES AND ZINE CULTURE

Wednesday, April 15, 2015

psychedelics as a bellwether issue in advancing the narrative and achieving peace

I've been having some feelings of being kind of sorry for some of the last video that I posted, if I seemed to get kind of flippant about the violence that goes on. You know, I had a kind of thought there about getting paranoid and not getting paranoid.

As of today, April 15th, there is violence ongoing. We're doing a lot of things about it, we're doing a lot of good.

Not to make anybody uncomfortable, but when there are thoughts that people have about it, that seem like they might help the situation, we feel moved sometimes to share those thoughts in hopes of helping manifest the change we want to see, etc.

So what can we do? There's a lot of good, interesting conversations going on. And I've been doing a lot of thinking about how to frame all the issues and make a silver-bullet kind of manifesto, or, you know, transmission, that would help unify efforts, etc. And I'm still pretty optimistic about those sorts of efforts. I think that's possible, anyway. I still think that's possible.

But in the meantime, of all the questions and issues, if we were to talk about - since we've already gone on for a few minutes here - if you were to sort of pick an issue, off the top of one's head, or from the notes one's been making, thinking about these things, what one issue might prove productive in catalyzing cascades of desired advancements in the narrative?

Are you thinking what I'm thinking? I've been thinking about psychedelics, in that context of, what issue might we want to focus on, if for no other reason - there probably are other reasons - but if for no other reason than the relative simplicity of the conversation, in view of how concrete a thing it is that we're talking about - relative to things like talking about wages, and legislation, high abstractions like those - the question of: we have substances that produce profound experiences in people who ingest them. Do you ingest them, and how do you approach other people ingesting them?

I've had some conversations recently that have also sort of spurred this line of thought. We may have gotten into a habit of thinking about psychedelics as something so far out -- out there -- I mean, this is sort of the reputation they seem to have on some level, like how Obama just the other day predicted that changes in federal policy on marijuana are a long way off. Yeah. We know the reputation, and what the legislation is currently. But there's such a vast literature available regarding psilocybin, LSD, DMT, etc. And although it's still in large part an outlaw culture, there is a huge, rich, complex, friendly, humorous culture that has been connected with psychedelics. And then, in contrast to that, the types of things that are brought up when people are reacting against psychedelics or against tolerance of psychedelics - well, one person, a few weeks ago, mentioned, in relation to psilocybin mushrooms, that you don't want to "mess up your mind". But then we continued to have a conversation; we talked about dreams, about the value of dreams, sort of an analogy there. And then sometimes the first thing that seems to come to mind for people is people jumping out of windows. So, there seems to be a huge amount of potential here for finalizing the process of spreading the information around - waking up and smelling the mushrooms.

Saturday, April 4, 2015

Making all labors "labors of love"

Advocating for a FREE (pay-it-forward) society might seem like unrealistic utopianism, but I'd like to make (part of) a case for it. I'll just touch on some points here, but a more complete case, with fleshed-out explanations and examples, seems ripe for the undertaking.

What's preventing the entire economy from working on a "labor of love" / "pay it forward" basis? Not much, I'd argue, besides the momentum of our assumptions. I think many, many people already feel very attracted to this idea, but when it's been brought up, the reaction against it has often simply been that it's too radically different from the status quo -- it's too different from how people are used to thinking. So it seems that there are many people who are for it, but who assume that too many others won't be for it. If we just take the idea a little more seriously and talk about it more, that tide can start to turn.

The core of the resistance to this turning of the tide seems to involve a suspicion that much of the labor that our civilization depends on is, well, so laborious that no one will do it unless there's direct compensation. In response to that concern, we can observe:
1) People do laborious things without compensation all the time already. Hobbies, volunteering, caregiving, etc.
2) The laboriousness is increased by the profit motive, which incentivizes maximum consumption.
3) We often create employment - create labor - that serves little "objective" purpose besides giving people jobs (and therefore, money).
4) Our system incentivizes the hoarding of work - we actually hoard knowledge and skills and opportunities, as these give us increased access to scarce work.

There are some specific paths that could lead to a post-coercive, post-bureaucratic world. Occupation movements create zones of freedom, allowing the mechanisms of a free society to be practiced, refined, and demonstrated while leaving the political/economic system intact elsewhere. Another possible path is a rapid shift in the attitudes/opinions of large masses of people, such that our systems may be transformed rapidly by general consensus.

Let's keep challenging the assumption that it's impossible, or impossible within our lifetimes. The more we think about it, write about it, talk about it, demonstrate about it, etc., the closer we may come to making it a reality.