Orlov: You.Are.Not.In.Control

What can we do to change the minds of decision makers and people in general to actually do something about preparing for the forthcoming economic/energy crises (the ones after this one!)?

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raspberry-blower
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Orlov: You.Are.Not.In.Control

Post by raspberry-blower »

Another thought provoking essay by Dmitry Orlov this week - about the roe of the automobile in what Orlov calls "the technosphere"
Dmitry Orlov wrote: A good example of how the technosphere controls our tastes is the personal automobile. Many people regard it as a symbol of freedom and see their car as an extension of their personalities. The freedom to be car-free is not generally regarded as important, while the freedoms bestowed by car ownership are rather questionable. It is the freedom to make car payments, pay for repairs, insurance, parking, towing and gasoline. It is the freedom to pay tolls, traffic tickets, title fees and excise taxes. It is the freedom to spend countless hours stuck in traffic jams and to suffer injuries in car accidents. It is the freedom to bring up neurologically damaged children by subjecting them to unsafe carbon monoxide levels (you are encouraged to have a CO detector in your house, but not in your car—because it would be going off all the time). It is the freedom to suffer indignities when pulled over by police, especially if you’ve been drinking. In terms of a harm/benefit analysis, private car ownership makes no sense at all.
Well I wouldn't recommend drinking and driving in any circumstances, Dmitry :lol:

On a more serious note - look at the wording in that quote. Freedom this freedom that - have you really got freedom?

Another point that Dmitry makes is the win-win for the petroleum industry:
Dmitry Orlov wrote: The proliferation of small gasoline-burning engines in the form of cars enables another optimization, forcing us to pay for another generally useless fraction of the crude oil barrel: road tar. Lots of cars require lots of paved roadways and parking lots. Thus, the technosphere wins twice, first by making us pay for the privilege of disposing of what is essentially toxic waste at our own risk and expense, then by making us pay for spreading another form of toxic waste all over the ground. Suburban sprawl is not a failure of urban planning; it is a success story in enslaving humans and making them toil on behalf of the technosphere while causing great damage to themselves and to the environment. Needless to say, you have absolutely no control over any of this. You. Are. Not. In. Control. You can vote, you can protest, you can lobby, donate to environmentalist groups, attend conferences on urban planning… and you would just be wasting your time, because you can't change petroleum chemistry.
Yep - the petroleum industry is a controlling influence here.

The whole essay here
Dmitry Orlov: You.Are.Not.In.Control
A common mistake that people make when trying to design something completely foolproof is to underestimate the ingenuity of complete fools - Douglas Adams.
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emordnilap
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Post by emordnilap »

Yup, good one. Always follow the money.

I've borrowed this from one of the comments: "heroin would be legalised and cars would be banned if we legislated things on the basis of how many people they kill" because I like it.
I experience pleasure and pains, and pursue goals in service of them, so I cannot reasonably deny the right of other sentient agents to do the same - Steven Pinker
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I experience pleasure and pains, and pursue goals in service of them, so I cannot reasonably deny the right of other sentient agents to do the same - Steven Pinker
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