June 24, 2016

Summer Reading

Beautiful nature in our neighbourhood park is a nice respite from global turmoil.

Summer is here - the season for relaxing and reading. This morning I was checking out a piece by William A. Cohn, professor of jurisprudence at New York University. In it he was explaining how the whole Brexit thing was just more obfuscation, of which there is plenty these days.

Contained within his writing were some suggestions for summer reading that I thought I would share.

Cohn wrote that "thankfully, starting tomorrow, we will have to hear less about the so-called debate on Brexit – a debate which has been marked by lies, omission, and fear-mongering."

Unfortunately that describes most of the crap emanating from governments, corporations, and their media enablers around the world these days, as they prepare us for the ultimate corporate take-over.

"New issues will capture the headlines, Cohn says, "and new false choices will be presented. Ignore them as best you can."

You can't ignore the fact that it is summer time, an opportunity to read and relax. I am not sure if these titles will provide a break from the turmoil, but they will improve our knowledge base, and therefore our ability to counter anti-freedom forces. In spite of their potential heaviness, I will be visiting the library to check some of these out... before they are banned by the corporatocracy.

The following are the books the good professor recommends for the beach this season:

"Bad Samaritans" by Ha-Joon Chang

"News: The Politics of Illusion" by Lance Bennet

"Absurdistan" by Gary Shteyngart

"Democracy Incorporated" by Sheldon Wolin

"Johnny Got His Gun" by Dalton Trumbo.

"Knowledge is potential power, to be acted upon, towards building new and better ways of organizing our world."

Read, rest, relax. And change the world at the same time.

June 22, 2016

Summer Solstice

Summer solstice moonrise over the back yard Acadian forest.

It is true that the best things in life can not be bought. Take summer, for example. No amount of cash will make this most relaxed of seasons come any sooner. I might buy me some of that if I could.

Here in Nova Scotia summers tend to come late. Right now, with summer being an official designation for the next 92 days, our weather has finally turned. The change of seasons can be seen, felt, and experienced.

June 21st is no guarantee of summer-like weather anywhere in Canada (it can pretty much snow anywhere any month of the year), but I am noticing a few things that lead me to believe we have arrived here in Digby county.

  • I'm not wearing layers any more.
  • My down comforter has been washed and put away till winter.
  • I can't remember the last time we fired up the wood stove.
  • The black flies are out. And hungry. "Don't scratch - it'll get infected."
  • Haying in the fields around us has been taking place over the past few days.
  • A cat has been leaving its calling cards in our new raised bed garden.
  • Open windows, fresh breezes.
  • My neighbours are getting ready to migrate down the road to their summer camp on the lake.
  • Our garden is fully seeded. "Germinate, little buddies, germinate."

So, Northern Hemispherians, if summer has arrived where you are at, consider yourself to be rich. I hope you enjoy a relaxed and fruitful summer season enjoying the best things in life. For free.

Southern Hemispherians - stay warm. We are thinking about you.

Note: Be sun smart and keep your eye on the UV forecast when you check your local weather before heading out into nature. Cancer sucks. 

"About 90 percent of nonmelanoma skin cancers are associated with exposure to ultraviolet (UV) radiation from the sun."

June 20, 2016

A Simpler Way: Crisis As Opportunity

I received a notice from the Simplicity Institute of the release of a documentary film by Jordan Osmond and Samuel Alexander called A Simpler Way: Crisis As Opportunity. I am sharing the information in this post so NBA readers have the opportunity to see this film in its entirety.

For free, of course.

This is what the Simplicity Institute has to say about this documentary:

"The overlapping economic, environmental, and cultural crises of our times can seem overwhelming, can seem like challenges so great and urgent that they have no solutions. But rather than sticking our heads in the sand or falling into despair, we should respond with defiant positivity and try to turn the crises we face into opportunities for civilisational renewal. 
During the year of 2015 a small community formed on an emerging ecovillage in Gippsland, Australia, and challenged themselves to explore a radically ‘simpler way’ of life based on material sufficiency, frugality, permaculture, alternative technology and local economy. 
This documentary by Jordan Osmond and Samuel Alexander tells the story of this community’s living experiment, in the hope of sparking a broader conversation about the challenges and opportunities of living in an age of limits."

In sharing this documentary they hope to "spark a broader cultural conversation about the importance of voluntary simplicity, permaculture, and economic relocalisation in an age of limits." That definitely fits within our mandate here at Not Buying Anything.

Watch "A Simpler Way" at: http://simplicityinstitute.org/film, then let us know what you think in our comment section below.

Here is what some are saying about this timely and important film:

“This is a great video, and a very nice community I wish to one day be involved  in a community like this and live the same way.” 

“Awesome. We wish we could do this here in the UK. Hopefully with good people like you guys, this mindset and these values will be abundant. It's really inspiring to see, keep up the good work. Thank you for sharing this with us.” 

"I was one of the participants in the project.  
It is very difficult, if not impossible, to extract oneself entirely from the monetary economy in industrially developed nations like Australia. There are rates, bills, taxes etc, the entire country is set up around extractive industries and opposed to the radical self sufficiency we were attempting during our year together.  
Any project trying to set up alternatives is necessarily living with one foot in the formal economy and the other in the localisation/internalisation of production that would lead towards "true sustainability" (though true sustainability would need to involve entire bioregions, multiple generations, and ultimately the entire human species moving to a radically different way of life)  making compromises along the way."

“Message of hope for the human race, the other living animals and plants on this tiny planet unique in the universe(as far as our knowledge goes).”

“Thank you for all the hard work that went in to this. Especially to those who went against the modern paradigm of individualism, and offered their lives (or one year of it!) to live with others, for others, in a way that is now considered abnormal. 

Humankind has to change if we are to survive what is coming, and projects like this offer not only ideas, but hope. Ted Trainer is an amazing person - my thanks also go to him for daring to write about and live consistently with his beliefs. You are all an inspiration!”

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