REAL Green focuses on the individual. The message is not meant to be a movement. This message is for a handful of readers who visit this obscure blog. Those who understand REAL Green action will have an oversized impact on those places that have the right stuff to survive the coming bottleneck. This will unfold over years and days. This will be a mosaic of events and processes.
The complexity and complicated structures of the individual’s world in decline are now self-organizing and adapting negatively. These forces are converging and reinforcing. Forces of decline are abandonment, dysfunction, and irrational. These forces occur suddenly in break-outs but also slow attrition. This is in contrast to the slow incremental building of growth our grandfathers knew. For you the individual in the dawning of a new age this means your previous experience and education must be altered.
The mental pattern of bargaining is entrenched at the public level. Optimist both green and brown are stuck in bargaining because of the arrogance of humanism. Leaders don’t become leaders without this collective trait of arrogance. This condition is in fact now breeding psychopathic behavior among the elites who run the world. The administrative state, global technocratic think tanks, and transnational corporations are increasing human arrogance when the opposite is needed.
Prosperity has been promised in so many forms for so long people default to those who promise the most. Promises eventually become untenable entitlements. Economically they become unfunded liabilities. If people really understood he truth that prosperity is over and has been over they would live differently. Living differently would crash the system of growth.
This is not only a camouflaged catch-22 for humans but also an unfolding planetary tragedy. Anti-life forces are in full force. This is the time of maximum darkness for the planet yet humankind thinks we are at the greatest point in our history with knowledge and tech. This is actually the dawning of the bottleneck period where stability and growth turn to vicious decline and reorientation.
This dangerous period of unkeepable promises that have become entitlements means you the individual need to view life differently for your survival. Now that prosperity has tipped over into decline there will be dangerous resentment. If you are elite, I would be very worried because you have a long way to fall with many people eying your priveldge. If you insecurely living a wealthy life, I would be worried. Most people are going to get a 40% haircut.
This current inflation and deflation combination is stagflation. This is not transitory and will only increase. This is systematic and will converge and reinforce decline. This decline will be a mosaic with a variety of outcomes. Some places will collpase while others will see slower decline. There are places where constructive growth and relative refuge are possible. This is REAL Green. Find the right people and place and you will find a refuge of sorts.
My life is a REAL Green experimentation. I am walking the walk. I am telling you the story. I am talking to very few of you mainly because my message of doom does not sell. For most it is like the occasional porn viewing. What I am talking about will not be a movement. It is not practical for urbanites and much of the world population is increasingly urban and centralized.
REAL Green is a decentralized mentality but with a strategy of parasitically feeding off centralized wealth to decline in place in a local with a future. A proper spirituality allows this because it is attitudes and mentality that drive constructive growth in a refuge microclime. The world will be collapsing all around you. Your refuge will be affected too but your attitudes and mentality will allow meaning and dignity. This is the hospice of REAL Green. The lifeboat is your homestead. Your monestary is where meaning is cultivated.
REAL Green is highly mental with adaptive. Adaptations concern attitudes and spirtual orientation. Once your mental framework is in the adaption mode for a decline process then you can focus on the physical realities of decline which put simply is less physical affluence. This is very hard to do. I say that because I am trying to do it and I hit road blocks at every turn.
Doom is effectively a pariah concept that society avoids on all levels. If you focus on doom you are going against the narrative but paradoxically you are flowing with the current of life. Life is now in a period of destructive change in a succession of complexity. Human growth caused this with a forcing of anti-life activities. Monocultures, forever chemicals, and excessive waste streams have ended the stable Holocene. This is now the destructive Anthropocene.
I constantly talk about a mentality of relative and realistic because the Anthropocene is an age of duplicity. Humans are tracking in one direction and the planet and life in another. REAL Green attempts to navigate both worlds realistically and relatively based upon your local of people and place. It is here where meaning is because it is here humans scale. When scaled properly there is more balance.
This adaptive mentality must be tied to your local of people and place. How much you can change your people and place is your envelope of adaptation. This is a keystone attitude because one of the most important criteria for the success of an individual is knowing local limitations. Your limitations are a moving target because of outside forces. You may be completely dedicated to change but your people and place are not. This requires throttling to get it right. Overdoing adaption is as bad as not doing anything.
I have succeeded over many years in moving from elite status to solidly middle class. This is harder than you think because family and tribe have roles for you. My definition of tribe is extended family, friends, and other relationships. I am now to the point where I should move from middle class to lower middle class but I have not made that move. I am mentally ready for it. I think about this daily. It is coming because all you need to do is be honest about science and economics to see that basics of prosperity will be over soon.
My approach is I am going to enjoy good foods, clothing, and products while I can. I know it will end but I will feed off this system intelligently while I can. This is the terminal illness of the hospice. A person’s last months in a hospice should focus on quality of life with acceptance of the end. The key ingredient is lifestyle adaption. I am still enjoying items of prosperity but recognizing it will end soon. This mentality is like a daily prayer.
Attitudes address this but also changed lifestyle. Attitudes of simplicity and Spartan living are a must. A permaculture lifestyle is the basics. Much of what I have done is efficiency related and prepping. I have embraced the spirituality of Green. This spirituality is simply taking your existing spirituality and greening it up with permaculture localism.
In my case it is local biomass and animals. Goat and cattle graze polyculture pastures. I harvest hay and firewood. I also have a garden, orchard, and grapes. I have done environmental restoration that means for a time at least there is lots of forage and game to harvest. This is the simplicity of permaculture for my place. I keep it local and low on fossil fuel inputs.
I have stocked up on essentials but they will run out over time. I have rationalized my equipment by eliminating machines and getting smaller. Equipment wears out and is lost to accidents so this is my envelope. Without resupply your prepped homestead will suffer entropic decay over time. Less equipment and more human labor is a proper consideration. One of my biggest deficiencies is no animal labor and not enough human labor. These are my limitations.
I am a one-man operation but with help from my wife and two 14 year-olds. Without fossil fuels my operations stops. I know what animals and equipment I need but economics and time needed prevent change. I have downsized as much as I can with equipment. A mule team is needed but there is no way I can fit that into what I do. I am hoping my young boys will embrace my farming system at least part time.
The younger generation is the future. The future is larger families despite current demographics. The future of women is keeping house and providing for the family. Men will be in the fields and doing manual labor. Look to the 19th century for a feel of what is ahead.
Health deteriorates too meaning downsizing into a more labor-intensive life is more wear and tear. At 60 my back and joints are now problematic. I power through this but for how long? When I hit 70, I doubt I will be able to do what I do. If I can’t get my kids on board then this farm stops. This is the sad reality of decline for me. But I reflect on this as a journey. I live day by day.
For me the most important variable to this whole process of decline is attitudes. You must embrace the idea of insecurity and depravations. What this means is living them in your life even if there is no immediate crisis. There is a building crisis that we are being slow boiled into. You need to have the mentality of adapting to adapt. I have a good life that is tough but rewarding. My biggest effort is not the back breaking work and redundancy of low value tasks but the attitude that more painful adaption is ahead. I think about sacrifices with everything I do.
This is why I spend so much time on the spirtual side of REAL Green which I call spirtual permaculture. The key aspect of REAL Green is getting tough spiritually for decline. You need to reach the edges of your envelope and try to stay there. You need to dwell on the cliff and be ready to jump off into a world that despite the preparations you are not prepared for. When you jump and or are pushed, the outcome is unclear. It does not matter how prepared you are for this jump. Fate will dictate a result beyond your input.
If you embrace a spirtual permaculture you will be cultivating acceptance strategies that are basically getting out of a holistic denial of decline. I say holistic because decline is physical and metaphysical. The physical is characterized by abandonment. The abstract is where dysfunction and irrational come into play. Finding ways to adapt to forces of decline means acceptance is a keystone effort. This is 80% attitude once you get the basics of green prepping mastered.
The key to green prepping and spirtual permaculture is embracing nature because if you do nature will assist you. Nature has already figured out the rat race. Humans have arrogantly deluded themselves over the ages that we can do it better through knowledge and technology. This has resulted in an evolution of a human system that is steadily less resilient with brittle sustainability. The drift into increasing prosperity has been relentless and is likely now a dead end evolutionary strategy
Embracing nature means being more natural. This means seasonal and symbiotic. It means rural and local. If you are urban then my message is only partially useful. The degree to which you are urban and mobile is a good gauge for you risk level. Most cities larger than 20,000 have little resilience to decline shocks. Many of these cities are not position properly near food, water, and energy. Longer term sustainability means less globalism.
REAL Green finds the macro narrative a lost cause. Don’t embrace messages of false hope. This does not mean ignore your globalized world. You can’t ignore the macro. A key aspect of REAL Green is prepping with security for the effects of a declining globalized world. Yielding strategies are foremost but positioning is important too. Be less of a target but also position with groups for common defense. You will have no choice but to reflect globally and support a political cause otherwise you will be at risk of being swept away individually. The key to politics is localism. The current system is broken but you still need to influence how it unwinds in relation to your local.
A key element of REAL Green is using this dying system to leave it. You are relying on the ecological principal of niche growth within a system in decline. Niches are freed up when a complex system breaks down. You take your prepped local boosted by proper attitudes and a robust spirituality and become a force of adaptation. This is swimming with the current of life mentality and physcally. Life is in decline so you embrace decline. You are swimming against the civilization current so right is wrong and wrong is right in this regard. Civilization is in a linear urge to manifest destiny. This is suicide.
This start with downsizing but more accurately downsizing with dignity of meaning. Downsizing is a retreat action. Downsizing with dignity is a retreat in force. You accept the war is lost but you will lose slower. Entropic decline of a system breaking down will win this war until humanity settles to a proper level of stasis. The reason I say embrace nature is because nature has perfected how to battle entropic decay. You can’t top nature’s nature for this.
Human civilization is declining on all levels. This has forced planetary systems into flux from the stability that gave life so much complexity in the Holocene. The web of life is declining with lower diversity thereby reducing common support. The best you can do is postion properly but this first means acceptance of decline. Once acceptance is embraced it is then a strategy for engineering of a different life system.
I am including two articles for your review. I abbreviated them so you get the main points I want to stress. I am increasingly finding my REAL Green positions proving out with the point of view of others. These may be obscure and not mainstream but I find these obscure and alternative writers are the most honest.
This dovetailing supports my view I am on the right track. I have been doing this for years and going against the grain with talk of decline. I started in earnest in 2000. Even before 2000 I took interest in the diverse science of decline. This has been academic but also a way of life. I am a homesteader and naturalist but with a green prepping twist.
All those years of crying wolf and now here we are in this scary world I have been describing. This is not vindication because that is not what acceptance is about. This is about the journey not the destination. I have explored, experimented, and created through this process. This process is learning and coming to know the truth. This is in my view is the higher value of being human. I feel nearer the sacred with this mentality.
I call this life boats and hospices because the effort is physical and metaphysical. I also speak of homestead and monestary. I am talking about embracing nature and prepositioning for the trip down. I speak of a monestary because once your life boat is outfitted you need morale to face the coming storm. The monestary contains the art and meaning for the why. The why is your higher power principal. Combine these two and you will be a force of change.
“But it’s equally important that we understand the inner nature of a rapidly-unfolding crisis situation. Prosperity is heading downwards, hardship is being worsened by the rising costs of necessities, and these material trends are invalidating two assumptions on which decision-makers have hitherto relied.”
“One of these failing assumptions, of course, is that we can deliver ‘happy outcomes’ using fiscal, credit and monetary gimmickry. The other is the assumption that an economic consensus, generally labelled ‘liberal’, can prevail, by some kind of triumph of hope over reality.”
“On the basis of this useful discipline, our first point needs to be that prior growth in material prosperity has gone into reverse. Our second is that systems – including the financial and the political – have been built on the contrary assumption of ‘growth in perpetuity’. Our third is that this inherent contradiction is not understood.”
“Together, these points explain why we face crises of adjustment. We have to adjust our financial system to a post-growth reality, and adjust our political systems to a situation in which it’s no longer enough to offer the public “jam tomorrow”, telling people that they’ll all be better off in the future if they just ‘keep the faith’ in the present orthodoxy.”
“First, discretionary contraction isn’t pleasant, particularly for anyone who’s been told that discretionary prosperity is supposed to carry on increasing over time. Trying, both individually and collectively, to buck this trend – to increase discretionary consumption, even though discretionary prosperity is decreasing – worsens indebtedness, simultaneously exacerbating insecurity, and breeding discontent wherever it appears that a favoured minority is enjoying increased discretionary prosperity.”
“Promises can turn pretty quickly into expectations, and expectations into feelings of entitlement. The failure of promises, the disappointment of expectations and the denial of supposed entitlements can lead directly to resentment.”
“Depending on how you define “essential” – which varies both geographically and over time – roughly 60% of economic activity in the modern Western economy is discretionary. This means that about 60% (and probably more) of equity valuation, and of loans outstanding, is dependent on positive futurity as it affects discretionary prospects. In other words, if the consensus expectation of discretionary expansion were to turn instead into a realization of discretionary contraction, the financial system would face pressures which have no precedent in the industrial era.”
“In government, the equivalent of futurity is expectation, which means that people expect – and have been led to expect – a continuous improvement in their material circumstances over time. Economic ‘liberalism’ is particularly at risk because it is based on a claim, which might otherwise be called a promise, that the prosperity being enjoyed by the more fortunate in the present will, in the course of time, come to be enjoyed by everyone else as well.”
“My reading indicates that there has been little or no thinking about transition strategy, apart from that of the Green New Dealers and the Socialists, (…both of whom get it wrong; see below.) There has been considerable discussion within the Degrowth literature of what might appear to be strategy, but this is only discussion about goals. For instance various Degrowth (and GND) advocates call for things like fairer taxes, limiting inequality and implementing cap and trade systems. These (admirable) demands are in fact policies, statements of goals, not strategies for achieving goals.”
“But my main point here is not the neglect of the strategy issue, it is the total failure to grasp the magnitude of the degrowth required. I have gone into this in numerical detail in my paper “Degrowth; How much is needed?”. It derives the conclusion that present rich world levels of production, consumption resource use and GDP per capita must be reduced by up to 90% before a sustainable and just world could become achievable.”
“Typical GND proposals are utterly incapable of doing anything like this. They assume that the reductions needed are far less than this and can be achieved by reforms to/within/by consumer-capitalist society, mainly achieved by technical advances, more recycling and efficiency improvements. This “tech-fix faith has now been demolished by massive recent review studies such as by Hickel and Kallis, Parrique (… reviewing around 300 studies), and Haberl et al. ( … reviewing around 800.) These conclude that decoupling is not being achieved and is not at all likely to be. In some limited areas reductions can be made but in general if GDP increases so do resource and ecological impacts.”
“Significant Degrowth, beyond the relatively small amount that can be achieved by tech-fixes, means eliminating a great deal of productive capacity. Degrowth of the magnitude argued for above means phasing out, writing off, scrapping, most of the present amount of factories, corporations, trade, investment, industry, financing, and profit-making. It is about ceasing, eliminating, most of the producing and consuming going on. How on earth could this be done? That’s the Degrowth conundrum.”
“In the article “Simpler Way transition theory” I explain how it can be done, and the only way it can be done. The task is to enable people who presently have to produce and consume a lot to live satisfactorily, to transition to lifestyles and systems in which they do not have to. The Simpler Way makes that possible and it is the only way it is possible.”
“The claim here is that there is only one general form of society that can enable a high quality of life on extremely low levels of resource throughput. The core elements in this Simpler Way must be mostly small, highly self-sufficient and self-governing predominantly collectivist communities in control of their local needs-driven economies and willingly committed to far simpler lifestyles and systems. The Alternative provides the detail, including provision for socially-desirable high tech, the elimination of unemployment, and the securing of a high quality of life for all.”
“It can be the same with respect to many other goods and services, including almost all other food items, dwelling construction, clothing supply, welfare and education provision, and especially for abundant and resource-cheap leisure and entertainment.”
“These Simpler Way communities cannot be established or run by governments. Their crucial ingredient is a mentality, a culture prioritising self-sufficiency, localism, global awareness, community autonomy and self-government, cooperation and above all desire to live in materially simpler lifestyles and systems. These communities must be highly autonomous (within national guidelines and laws). They can only function well if run by conscientious, socially responsible happy citizens who derive life satisfaction from non-material pursuits. The state cannot give or enforce the conditions. It cannot make the right decisions for vast numbers of local communities, decisions such as what fruit trees to plant where a parking lot is being dug up. Above all the state cannot create the required world view and dispositions.”
“This is a cultural revolution; only when the right ideas and values become predominant can structural change towards simpler lifestyles and systems take place. These conditions show the fundamental mistake built into the standard socialist assumption that the good society must have highly centralised state control. And it shows that the standard socialist strategy of taking control of the state is also fundamentally mistaken. We will eventually take it but at the present early stage of the revolution trying to do so is a waste of time, partly because the system is far too deeply entrenched, but mainly because there are much more important subversive things to do right now.”
“This is a classical anarchist vision of small scale cooperative communities run on thoroughly participatory lines free from domination by outside forces. It has been made essential now by the advent of the limits to growth. In previous revolutions it made sense to try to take power off the ruling class and to run the industrial system in the interests of all via a centralised state. But now the situation is totally different; central states cannot create or run the kinds of communities needed get per capita resource use rates right down while enabling good quality of life.”
“Consider the impossible logic embedded in socialist strategic thinking. If by some miracle a government with these ideas got state power tomorrow it could not implement Simpler Way practices unless there had been such massive support for them that people had elected a government with these policies. There is no possibility of that happening in the foreseeable future in a society obsessed with growth and affluence. It could only happen after there had been the greatest cultural transition in history, to willing acceptance of simpler ways. That transition would have been the revolution; the subsequent change in structures, including our control of the remnant state, would then be consequences of the revolution. It is therefore clearly a mistake to focus on taking state power at this point in time. What we need to focus on is working to bring about the crucial changes in ideas and values.”
“What then is to be done? Again the anarchists have the right answer. It is to “prefigure” the alternative. That is, build some of the required new ways here and now within the old system. The point of pre-figuring can easily be misunderstood. It does not assume that just setting up post-revolutionary arrangements one by one will lead to these eventually having replaced consumer-capitalist ways. The main point is educational/ideological. By becoming involved in the many emerging local initiatives activists are likely to be in the most effective position to acquaint participants and onlookers with the need to dump capitalism and build local needs-driven economies under local control.”
“The more people we help to understand all this in the short time remaining the better will be our chances of establishing the new systems before it’s too late. So if you want to help us solve the degrowth conundrum, get down to the community garden.”