Archive for Sustainability

Progression of Aggression

Posted in Critical Commentary of Civilization, Organic Development, Sustainability with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on December 13, 2013 by Drogo

Modern automobiles are a deadly fun convenience for transportation. Yay human civilization, fuck everything else. Roads and vehicles basically say a big FUCK YOU to birds, bees, bugs, plants, animals, and life in general on Planet Earth. Cars and trucks are one of the main killers of life on this planet every day. The truly suicidal thing about the race for bigger and badder killing machines, is that besides murdering billions of deer, possum, skunk, turtles, and other cute critters, we are murdering ourselves too.

TV Shows like ‘Top Gear’ are entertaining, and i certainly have enjoyed watching their stupid antics and testosterone driven points; but there must come a time when we all collectively say “Who the fuck put assholes in charge of running and hosting everything in society?” Even the most ‘hippy’ of the 3 annoying hosts made a statement about alternative cars that made me feel sorry for the state of humanity. What that jerk said may be accurate about hydrogen-fuel-cell electric cars as being the only ‘car of the future’ because they “have all the convenience and horse-power of our current petrol car standards” (or something to that effect) because we have all been pressured to feel that ‘Progress = Aggressive Power’, just as that host was advocating as though the company had given him a bribe.

Progress does not have to mean going faster, moving with more thrust, or being better. Yes often progress should mean being more efficient, breaking records, and all that competitive ‘dog eat dog’ ‘survival of the fittest’ shit. However popular commercial peer pressure is driving the need for road-rage, arrogance, aggression, and pollution as ‘progress’; and to prove that this should not always be our definition of what is ‘good progress’, we need only think about technology that some of us realize we are too stupid to use all the time. For example how many of us say we need to only use nuclear bombs or stronger weapons all the time, since anything less would be ‘going backwards’.

We need to be teaching kids not only that they do not always have to ‘win’ or be ‘winning’ all the time; but sometimes we need to decide to throw the ring into the volcano. To learn how to begin to want to put harmful ideas or technology aside, must start at a young age; otherwise you get tons of middle-aged men having problems figuring this out even during their mid-life crisis with their fucking sports cars. Commercial sports and cars may be fun, but they are both fucking idiotic.

Idiot Puncher

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STEWARDSHIP: Freedom and Responsibility

Posted in Critical Commentary of Civilization, Sustainability with tags , , , , , , , , , on March 1, 2013 by Drogo

Part 1: Freedom

One can never truly be free.

As Gerry Spense says, “True freedom is nothingness”. To be free of loneliness, people confine themselves to a relationship of some sort. To be free of their current lives, people drive away in a car to be alone on the highway, but then they are confined to the driver’s seat and their own minds, not to mention the laws of physics. Then people blast off in a rocket-ship to outer-space, and are restrained by life support systems, and their own human minds once again.

Life is about constantly trading one freedom for another. While existing in this universe, we are confined to laws, whether natural or man-made. Physically there is no escaping this reality, but the mind has the potential for freedom, during certain transcendental moments or states. As Immanuel Kant alluded to in his writings; with a rational approach we can determine our terms of reality and freedom, and respond to them respectively.

To live in a society there are obligations to maintain living standards and order. If we respect the lives of others, then we might expect the same in return. If we do not respect the lives of others, then we should not expect respect in return. Perhaps freedom is not just self-determination in choices me make, but also our ability to free our minds from suffering, so that we can enjoy our lives. If freedom is transcendental, then we as a culture can shift our paradigm so that environmental and social stewardship is less of a burden, and more of a freedom.

Part 2: Ethical Responsibility

Respecting the lives of animals is a necessary part of our existence. To maintain and respect what we have achieved as humans, it is the least we can do to maintain and respect the natural environment of which we are all a part. To defend animals from our aggression, we must assign them legal rights, to protect the ecosystem which is our food-chain if nothing else.

As humans we must decide ethical issues in order to be responsible stewards of the Earth, as our population increases. Hunting is natural, but it disregards rights to life. We need to analyze certain natural occurrences, and adjust our living situations according to our conclusions.

It can be said by literal semantics, that when we create something, we are responsible for creating it. For example when asked the question “Are you responsible for creating that?”, and we say yes, then then we are the ones responsible for the action of creating it. This is true biologically as much as technologically; and yet we act like irresponsible ignorant idiots by producing massive amounts of toxic waste, garbage, and other pollutions. As creatures with the ability to reason, perhaps it is time to take more responsibility for our actions. Life is a learning process, and so is evolution; we must be open-minded to different ways of thinking in a New Age.

I think, therefore I am.

Regarding human over-population, I believe that the problem is solvable, but we must be open to redefining our ambitions and reducing our numbers. We have become needlessly dependent on machines created to simplify our lives, but often these devices are not more convenient when the time spent earning the money needed to buy, repair, and replace them is added up. Using the same human ingenuity it took to invent all the contraptions, we can expand our architectural realms and enlighten our ways of living with nature; only then can we progress into space, and work on Universal goals.

The purpose of technology is to secure a good living environment, not to destroy the environment. Technology serves us, so maybe we can put computer intelligence to good use by dealing with our population problem. As humans we must remember our compassion, and never let technology blindly guide us towards a sharp spike, and then a dead-end flat-line.

Responsible human beings should decide for themselves what their own guidelines are for life. We should not have to rely on machines. There are many humans with reasoning disabilities, but society can help them. It is fortunate that groups like Green Peace exists to battle the irresponsible ignorance committed by irresponsible humans. We must strive for responsible stewardship, despite ignorance. The battle between ignorant irresponsibility and wise responsibility is on-going, but it if there is no battle then the lazy selfish ignorant masses will have their way, and the human race will exist as demons and zombies. As we peal away one layer of ignorance, we find another, so it will take a long time. We need to be shepherds of ourselves, and stewards of our domains.

Wisdom through awareness of ignorance.

 *

0212131103

Self, Family, & Culture

RWU Dec. 8, 1995

Arcology by Paolo Soleri

Posted in Alternative Architecture, Arts (Design & Performance), Cooperatives / Communities / Networks / Travels, Critical Commentary of Civilization, Individuals / Members / Monsters / Creative Writing, Sustainability with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on March 2, 2011 by Drogo

Cosanti and Arcosanti

Report based on books, and images and text found on the Arcosanti Project website

Architect Paolo Soleri was a student of Frank Lloyd Wright at Taliesin East and West. In 1956 he settled in Scottsdale, Arizona and established Cosanti. The Cosanti Foundation then began their largest project called “Arcosanti” in 1970 based on Arcology (Architecture + Ecology). Arcology advocates urban interaction and accessibility in environmental structures. It seeks to minimize the use of energy, raw materials and land, reducing waste and environmental pollution; and allow interaction with the surrounding natural environment.

Arcosanti is an evolving prototype town with a capacity for 5,000 people. Arcosanti demonstrates massive ways to improve urban conditions through alternative architecture, and lessen pollution. Even the mega-structures will only occupy 25 acres of a 4060 acre land preserve. This keeps the natural desert an intimate part of the architectural experience. The rules of nature dictate the human designs, instead of just copying conventional methods that miss the point of living with nature. Arcosanti builds for efficient use of space, resources, and solar orientation.

Stowell Architects owned his books, and  loved his designs.

“Greenhouses provide gardening space for public and private use, and act as solar collectors for winter heat. The residents of Arcosanti are workshop alumni, who work on planning, construction, teaching, computer aided drafting, maintenance, cooking, carpentry, metal work, ceramics, gardening and communications. They produce the world-famous Soleri Bells, as well as hosting 50,000 tourists each year in a Gallery, Bakery, and Cafe open every day except Thanksgiving, Christmas, and New Years Day. Guided tours introduce visitors to the philosophy, history, planning and ongoing construction of the site. Concerts and other events in the Colly Soleri Music Center also allow visitors to experience Arcosanti. Shows include dinner, and are often followed by a pictograph light show on the opposite mesa.” – Arcosanti Website

Garden Cities by Ebenezer Howard

Posted in Arts (Design & Performance), Book Reports, Cooperatives / Communities / Networks / Travels, Critical Commentary of Civilization, Sustainability with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on March 1, 2011 by Drogo

From the book Garden Cities of To-morrow by Ebenezer Howard 1898, 1902

Ebenezer Howard was a shop keeper’s assistant, farmer, writer, sociologist, and statesman. Howard valued good living conditions, democracy, nature, human rights, and personalities. Osburn and Mumford added notes that introduce, critique, review, and praise Howard. JH Osburn claims Howard may have been influenced by Bellamy’s book Looking Backward. According to Lewis Mumford Howard was also inspired by Spense, Buckingham, Wakefield, George, and Kropotkin. Howard’s narrow building lots were handed down from medieval English dimensions (20 x 130 ft).

Garden Cities of To-morrow begins by describing the “Three Magnets”: Town, Country, and Town-Country. Howard explains why we are attracted to the best of both Town and Country aspects. Town-Country benefits have cooperation, beauty, nature, green fields, green parks, good utilities, good commerce, social opportunity, high wages, low rents, low price rates, and low pollution!

In most chapters, Howard proposes how Garden Cities would function with diagrams. He describes inter-connected urban nodes. Central City is shown with a constellation of satellite micro-cities (garden cities, towns, villages, developments). Garden Cities at their heart have a central garden, with rings of dwellings, shops, roads, industry, fields, and farms. The ordered layout is meant to improve biological, social, economic, and personal life for everyone.

Howard considered some difficulties with analytic self-criticism. He saw the weak points in his plans, and how they might fail. This foresight can allow us to prepare for the worst problems, to better shape designs for the future. He maintained that human ideals are worth trying; quoting Darwin “Selfish and contentious men will not cohere, and without coherence nothing can be accomplished,”. Howard believed that Socialism and Individualism must come together in the future to realize a true, vital organic society and state.

Ebenezer Howard felt that Garden Cities would work, because the plans were based on understanding human nature. He indicated that Urban or Communal failures are a result of the ‘Duality Principle’ (Janus). Ignorance of the Duality Principle allows kindred mistakes, by regarding one principle action to the exclusion of others. Howard believed we are all communists to some degree, even those that shudder at being told this, because we believe in roads, parks, and libraries. Individualism is no less excellent, in his mind, as he compares good society to an orchestra that plays together, but practice separately. Expense, however, always tends to get in the way of progress.

Sir Raymond Unwin worked with Howard. In 1903 they designed and established the first Garden City in England, named ‘Letchworth’. Letchworth proved a success, and in 1919 the second Garden City ‘Welwyn’ was founded. By 1950 the cities had a combined population of over 40,000. The account of their success is given in Purdom’s Building of Satellite Towns. Some key points regarding the study of Garden Cities are: how urban and rural districts connect, health and sanitation, zoning limitations of density and sprawl allowing light, gardens, and leisure, harmony rather than standardization, communications, ownership and cooperative leasing, public freedom and choice of enterprise.

Contemporary critics dismissed “Garden Cities” as more akin to the fantasy of H.G. Wells, than to the realities of urban planning. Despite the critics, Garden Cities of To-morrow is cited in countless planning bibliographies, and provides an organic alternative to bleak industrial future city-scapes. So what happened? Our suburbs in America do not follow his models, although some are better than others. Howard wanted to keep the city, town, and country distinct from each other, unlike amorphous suburban sprawl. He wanted more green around and in cities, by confining and condensing urban development, to keep the country rural, pastoral, and agrarian; yet integrating their foundations for healthy and function living.

“The pathway of any experiment worth achieving, is strewn with failures. Success is, for the most part, built on failure.”  – Ebenezer Howard

“Creative work always arises by the synthesis in one’s mind of material from otherwise unrelated sources…”  – J.H. Osburn

Stewardship of Trees

Posted in Organic Agriculture & Horticulture, Sustainability with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on December 6, 2009 by Drogo

There are so many applications of tree stewardship in America, yet little funds allocated towards the responsible maintenance of our forgotten cousins.

Parking lots

Environmental Summary

Branches Overhang

Seed Products: Nuts, Fruits, and Berries and more

Leaves, Sap, and Seeds

Trunks (bark)

Roots

Highways

Environmental Summary

Branches Overhang

Seed Products: Nuts, Fruits, and Berries and more

Leaves, Sap, and Seeds

Trunks (bark)

Roots

Towns

Environmental Summary

Branches Overhang

Seed Products: Nuts, Fruits, and Berries and more

Leaves, Sap, and Seeds

Trunks (bark)

Roots

Cities

Environmental Summary

Branches Overhang

Seed Products: Nuts, Fruits, and Berries and more

Leaves, Sap, and Seeds

Trunks (bark)

Roots

Counties

Environmental Summary

Branches Overhang

Seed Products: Nuts, Fruits, and Berries and more

Leaves, Sap, and Seeds

Trunks (bark)

Roots

(more to be found in the original SCOD Thesis)

Death to Christmas Trees!

Posted in Organic Development, Sustainability with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , on December 6, 2009 by Drogo

Every year, millions of perfectly good evergreen trees are slaughtered, decked out, and then thrown out. Yes, in the name of Jesus Christ, we massacre trees in America for our pride in gaudy ritual. We say we love Christmas Trees, much the same as hunters who love animals so much they kill them, and put them on display, dead.

Their dead carcasses are displayed and decorated, in the name of Christmas. However I think it a far more practical Holiday ritual is the Pagan Yule Log, which actually serves to warm and provide light on a dark night. If you are going to kill a tree, I think it should at least be used for something. Killing trees for Christmas Trees makes as much sense to me as human sacrifice.

If the tree is already dead, that is different. If you want to display a dead tree, just use one that is already dead, and then use it for fuel or compost. Artificial trees are more environmental, if they are kept and reused. Every tree killed in the prime of life is a loss, because trees burn or compost better after they have been dead for a few years. The only good use for killing a tree human size or larger is for use in construction.

Another alternative idea to industrial tree slaughter, is to use a smaller tree that a child could carry. Grow it yourself, and harvest it yourself. Then as you display it, it will mean more to you. I have actually had people tell me they would not be able to cut it, as they would be attached to it, but these same people want to buy a large tree every year that someone else has killed. There is also such as thing as a potted tree.

The best conclusion is for most people to have a small dead tree, or a small fake tree indoors, and decorate a living evergreen tree outside. If people do not have a yard, they should be able to decorate a community living tree. Living evergreen trees can grow quite tall, and can be much more impressive than the usual sizes that are dead. Remember, you can have less environmental impact, if you must own an interior tree, by either using a potted tree or at least having a dead one smaller than yourself.

Overpopulation / Education

Posted in Environmentalism with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on October 7, 2009 by Drogo

Global Humanity Problem / Solution Summary; After Decades Modern Civilization Conclusions are the Same

These are the same results I found during my Architectural Thesis in 2000. The larger the amount of humans on the planet, makes for less available resources per person over time. Overpopulation makes our impact EXPONENTIAL, for better and for worse. The responsibility of Stewardship is also therefore increasingly harder.

War and Environmental problems become harder to handle, while we at the same time develop better tools and more workers to help pre-existing problems. Civilized SUSTAINABILITY can be seen as a large building; the more you add on to accommodate people, the more you have to maintain, and larger problems are created that may be un-sustainable. Utopia was never perfect, even in the original novel by Sir Thomas More.

My most positive conclusion (besides escapism, nihilism, or negativism) has always been EDUCATION. It is the longest way, but the best answer. High-tech games are only beginning to address the needs of education for the future, but we must develop many more tools.