Black Hawk’s 11 Percent Solution

“Black Hawk’s 11 Percent Solution”    The Great Change

“I reiterated, among other things, Growth, whether of material “wealth” or population, cannot be sustained and some serious degrowth is overdue. You can get as much from looking at the Baltic Exchange Dry Index or the Dow.  If production cannot be decoupled from quality of life then we are chasing a paradox because we live on a finite planet of limited resources.  There is good news in that at least some of our problems can be addressed by reversing climate change and building ecosystem health through a multitude of natural, antifragile and frugal means.  However, none of these things are being done at any significant scale, and that scaling seems dangerously far off.  We are poised at the edge of the Seneca Cliff and will need to find a better way down than leaping without a parachute.”

“What I confirmed by reading Black Hawk’s account is the same as we might learn from any number of anthropology studies; that voluntary simplicity and gift economies provide for all, allow ample time for leisure, celebration, and sport, foster honesty and integrity as the highest social values, and encourage exploration of natural spiritual powers through deep observation, revelation, and clairvoyant dreaming. It is no worse than the lives we live now and in many ways better. This is why in the history of the American colonies those who switched sides and became Indians remained so, while Indians who tried out Western Civilization usually lasted only a short time in their strange surroundings before returning home.”

“Most of us likely cannot conceive of how a society as complex and populous as modern techno-consumer culture could transition in a century or less to something resembling Black Hawk’s village. We take half measures, like installing renewable energy, supporting a Green New Deal or joining transition towns, which are steps along the path, but not nearly enough to get where we must go. Next week we will have a look at David Holmgren’s latest missive, the strategies of the Global Ecovillage Network and Ecosystem Restoration Camps, and how to adopt the most realistic patterns of living that can be sustained into a fragile, hazardous and uncertain future.”

We may dismiss and even ridicule the above permaculture thinking but reality says at least some of this must be embraced.  I say some of this in regards to parachute strategies of lifeboats and hospices.  The nature of lifeboats and hospices does not need to be taken in the extreme just as collapse is nearly always mistaken in the extreme.  Lifeboats and hospices are a strategy of mitigating and adapting to a collapse process that may be a longer term phenomena.  It is very possible it could be short term but there is nothing that says it must.  This is about the here and now and the next day not some far off future in 2050 or 2100.

I have been a doomer and prepper now since 2000.  I have studies climate change and peak oil since 85 in college.  Even though peak oil story has change it is still relevant.  Energy is still a dangerous problem and possibly a predicament.  In any case a way of life is the real predicament.  I have come to the conclusion that the individual and small communities can embrace the necessary change to find resilience and relative sustainability within the context of a collapsing globalism.  This does not ensure survival but it does offer meaning.  Meaning comes from making efforts at survival.  Is this not what humans used to do before we become sedentary in modernism? 

This Real Green approach to a localized permaculture future revolves around the individual and small communities.  It offers a blue print for change at the grass roots level.  It acknowledges things like a Green New Deal are a waste of time.  Maybe something good will come out of the so called Green New Deal but for the most part I see a wasted effort that could of used political capital in a more informed and focused fashion.  This is the real failure of progressives and that is thinking they have the answers when they are part of the problem.  All I see is more political maneuvering to shift resources that is just another wealth transfer exercise.  The new deal is a new group who will benefit from free lunches.  This is really about power not the environment.  If it was really about the environment these people would be living differently. 

This is not about healing the planet.  That is no longer possible.  The damage has been done and the consequences are ahead.  This is more about triage and stabilization.  This is possible in small ways at the grass root level.  The top is too noisy with different ideologies corrupted by power plays.  The leadership of the world is dishonest and corrupted by affluence and power.  This is the raw truth of it, plain and simple.  This will not change until it ends.  The top has been coopted by psychopathic tendencies of power politics which is deep human nature.  It is the black hole of the ego.  There is no way to change this.  Corruption follows a process and we are in a late stage of it. 

When one realizes this predicament of human nature then they start where change can work and that is the local.  This does not mean we should reject efforts at the top.  We need efforts at the top but the point is these efforts will never make a difference with what is needed.  The efforts at the top will be cancelled out by other wrong efforts.  Let’s hope more good can come out of them is the best we can hope for.  This means if you want to be part of real change that is green with relative resilience and sustainability look right in front of you.  Quit expecting government to do it because they will not and cannot.  A flawed and destructive way of life cannot be made right with renewables and vegan practices.  Your life can be changed concentrate on that.

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