Over 500 experts contributed. The consensus is that progress and attention is lagging the need for change. If data is restricted to those with a decade or more of experience the picture is worse.
Progress is dominated by social entrepreneurs and NGOs while national governments’ and corporates’ performance is considered poor.
The lack of attention by governments and corporates is underpinned by their “clients” – voters and consumers – so clearly there remains among people generally a lack of awareness of the need and opportunity for system change. People don’t perceive the dangers of failing commercial and social systems and the disintegration of Earth’s natural environment upon which we rely.
Perhaps this is not surprising. Except for change agents and social entrepreneurs, people are not engaged with the problems of the world but instead stick to traditional mindsets and routines. (The SDG’s themselves are fundamentally flawed in their promotion of growth, as opposed to working within natural laws and the capacity of the biosphere.) Continue reading Time is running out: Behind the curve on SDGs
Open your eyes.
Begin to see your life.
Realise you can choose another path.
Being aware is the first step. Educate yourself. Choose to live with nature, rather than without nature.
The Silk Roads
A New History of the World
by Peter Frankopan
The title and the book’s intention, to offer a global perspective, were intriguing to me. Though not a history fan, it is increasingly clear that it is no help to see history from your own perspective because it is blinkered, full of self-serving interpretation and fails to expose the reality of the past. This book offers a big picture perspective.
Words by Charlie Chaplin. Contemporary images. The choice is clear. Have you chosen yet? Or are you still chasing the machine? Choose humanity, while the choice remains …
The Great Dictator‘s Speech (1940)
I’m sorry, but I don’t want to be an emperor. That’s not my business. I don’t want to rule or conquer anyone. I should like to help everyone if possible- Jew, Gentile, black men, white…
We all want to help one another. Human beings are like that. We want to live by each others’ happiness, not by each other’s misery. We don’t want to hate and despise one another. In this world there is room for everyone. And the good earth is rich and can provide for everyone. The way of life can be free and beautiful, but we have lost the way.
Greed has poisoned men’s souls; has barricaded the world with hate; has goose-stepped us into misery and bloodshed. We have developed speed, but we have shut ourselves in. Machinery that gives abundance has left us in want. Our knowledge has made us cynical; our cleverness, hard and unkind.
We think too much and feel too little. More than machinery ,we need humanity. More than cleverness, we need kindness and gentleness. Without these qualities, life will be violent and all will be lost. The aeroplane and the radio have brought us closer together. The very nature of these inventions cries out for the goodness in man; cries out for universal brotherhood; for the unity of us all.
Even now my voice is reaching millions throughout the world, millions of despairing men, women, and little children, victims of a system that makes men torture and imprison innocent people.
To those who can hear me, I say “Do not despair.”
The misery that is now upon us is but the passing of greed, the bitterness of men who fear the way of human progress. The hate of men will pass, and dictators die, and the power they took from the people will return to the people. And so long as men die, liberty will never perish.
Soldiers! Don’t give yourselves to brutes, men who despise you and enslave you; who regiment your lives, tell you what to do, what to think and what to feel! Who drill you, diet you, treat you like cattle, use you as cannon fodder!
Don’t give yourselves to these unnatural men—machine men with machine minds and machine hearts! You are not machines! You are not cattle! You are men! You have a love of humanity in your hearts! You don’t hate!
Only the unloved hate; the unloved and the unnatural.
Soldiers! Don’t fight for slavery! Fight for liberty!
In the seventeenth chapter of St. Luke, it’s written “the kingdom of God is within man”, not one man nor a group of men, but in all men! In you! You, the people, have the power, the power to create machines, the power to create happiness! You, the people, have the power to make this life free and beautiful, to make this life a wonderful adventure. Then in the name of democracy, let us use that power.
Let us all unite.
Let us fight for a new world, a decent world that will give men a chance to work, that will give youth a future and old age a security. By the promise of these things, brutes have risen to power. But they lie! They do not fulfill their promise. They never will!
Dictators free themselves but they enslave the people!
Now let us fight to fulfill that promise! Let us fight to free the world! To do away with national barriers! To do away with greed, with hate and intolerance!
Let us fight for a world of reason, a world where science and progress will lead to all men’s happiness.
Soldiers, in the name of democracy, let us all unite!
We joined an eclectic group at Voice Box at the end of June. We were asked to talk for five minutes about Common Sense, a book about people, planet and profit by a venture capitalist. Here is the edited version of the video showing the slides more clearly. Enjoy!
Thanks to Jaspar for great camera work.
The original footage is available at the bottom of this page here.
I’ll be doing Voice Box at GBS Visual Centre next Thursday 25 June at 7.30pm.
The idea is to do Common Sense in 5 minutes (apparently the bell rings when time is up. 😉 ) It will be a challenge, but fun. Now to squash the book in to 5 minutes before next week …!
Also there will be
John McKew, IT Carlow lecturer
Majella Swan, Carlow School of Music & aspiro choir
Ed Byrne – limestone / salvage
Eddie Sheehan – musician / composer, teaches at Carlow College
It should make for an interesting evening. Please come along. Ask questions!
It’s not as though it wasn’t expected. The behaviour and algorithms users and social media networks are intended to filter ideas to suit our individual perspective. That’s a major reason people use the big engines like Google and Facebook.
But that behaviour encourages groupthink. The user only clicks on stories and links that match their own desires and perspective and the engine tends to serve stories and links that the user prefers to click. It’s a self-reinforcing process.
The result is that you get a narrower view of the world. You don’t hear stories or connect with people that you have differences with. This reduces your information as well as your perspective. That means you don’t develop ideas; your thinking is less critical.
The solution? Every now and then, click links that you would normally avoid. Even if you don’t read them it will diversify the feed you get from the big engines. Use a different search engine which does not track your behaviour so that the search results are generic and diverse (try duckduckgo or ixquick for exmaple).
Three stages of TRUTH:
Earthlings is a docudrama drawing attention to vile, uncivilised behaviour in which we all play a role. It focuses on the torture of animals which modern society condones and from which we distance ourselves, covering five aspects: pets, food, clothing, entertainment, science.
Be warned. It is graphic. You might have a pet which you rescued, you might eat only organic produce, you might avoid leather and fur, you might not go to the races and you might not wear make-up, but the atrocities shown in the film still go on today, in your community and are endorsed by governments, leaders and “everyone”.
The point is: Just say NO. Humanity can not survive if it does not extend the rationale of justice to nature. That means treating animals with care, even if you are going to eat them, though plainly that in itself is far from necessary. In fact, a simple fix for climate change is veganism/vegetarianism because the livestock industry in the number one cause of greenhouse gases and a major contributor to biodiversity loss and environmental contamination. (See “The Facts” about sustainability, the environment and your future.)
I used to make fun of vegetarians and tofu. One day I realised I didn’t like killing animals. (Duh!) So I stopped killing them and became vegetarian. That was nearly two decades ago. I’m still alive, a little overweight in fact. And now it is science that a plant based diet is healthier and the meat industry is killing the planet. It should be that we can eat a bit of meat, but the impact on the biosphere of a meat focused food industry has become so violent, that a simple avoidance policy is really the only option.
You don’t have to watch Earthlings, but humankind must slow down and drastically reduce its consumption of the biosphere (our habitat which we need for life) and that includes consuming fewer animals.
Is it going to happen? Well, this is today’s headline: Syria conflict: Aleppo civilians suffer ‘unthinkable atrocities’, in which accounts of civilian torture and massacre are reported. Not a hopeful datapoint …