Society

Yes, we are all completely out of our minds

Derbyshire loonys in pub (c) Nick Delves, Monster Raving Loony PartyDoes anyone else feel like asking the powers that be: “Excuse me, what exactly is going on? Where do you think you are taking us? Are you all completely out of your minds?

“Why else would you pretend not to notice that our civilization is systematically killing life on Earth?”

It’s astonishing that things can get this bad and still be largely sidestepped by mainstream media and governments. And, for some reason, it’s still not ‘the done thing’ to bring it up seriously in conversation. Why? We’d hardly hold back out of deference if a surgeon mentioned she would be whipping out one of our healthy kidneys just to improve the hospital’s transplant figures. It’s mind-boggling that we button our collective lips while the capitalist juggernaut mows down the planet’s life support system – just to prop up GDP.

What a very strange state of suspended animation this is. (more…)

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Schools are preparing children for the wrong future

Lucton School

Parents searching frantically for places in a decent school for their children – one that gets good results and values a happy atmosphere, say – are failing to spot that even the best schools fail to offer an appropriate education for their pupils at all.

Why? First, because of the future our children face. Remember, modern society is founded on an abundance of fossil fuels (mainly oil), which has produced an economic and social web of such complexity that for many of us life is very far removed from its underlying connections with the natural world. This era is coming to an end, compounded by unfolding planetary crises that are taking us into a transition that will affect how we live, eat, travel and work and the skills we will need to do these things. (more…)

Telling it like it is: news from the dead centre

The Tower of Babel by Pieter Brueghel the Elder, Flemish painter © expiredThe industrial growth civilization may have no central command — but it behaves as if it does. VIVID thinks it should come clean and set up a reality newswire, which declares in straight-talking, plain-speaking English what is being decided at its hypothetical, brain-dead centre. This month we’d have:

From the DKCTRL (Department for Keeping Children Thinking along the Right Lines): all pupils in UK state schools will be told how to conform more readily to society’s standards and avoid inappropriate use of drugs, alcohol or sex – especially where such use might result in costs to the national economy, e.g. from treating drug addiction, supporting young mothers, and in terms of the opportunity costs of not having these mothers and drug addicts working and contributing to GDP. Chief Minister of the DKCTRL said: “Of course, the DKCTRL would also like to help young people in our society live happier, healthier lives but there is a limit to how much we’d like that. (more…)