Monthly Archives: May 2002

A plan for a leisure based society

Being back in the country it's abundantly clear to me that the key to a leisure based society — science fiction's dream — is simple rural living, with a high tech overlay. Food and living costs here seem to be around a third what they are in the city, plus the option for home ownership (rather than rental) is far more achievable.

Right now most of us work thirty to fifty hours a week, yet we can sustain ourselves comfortably (in the rural economy) for perhaps ten to fifteen hours of work weekly. So we have to ask ourselves — where are the benefits of those surplus hours going if they're not going to us? The answer is very simple: they are going to make very rich people (and headless corporations) even richer.

Simple rural living — which can still easily sustain the high tech communications infrastructure that we are using right now that has revolutionized our world — is the easiest way to subvert this unjust system, and redistribute the planet's wealth in a way that is both equitable and difficult for them (“the man”) to stop.

Over the next two years Rachel and I — and I hope some of you as well — will be making a lot of mistakes, but will be gaining the wisdom to make these dreams a reality for ourselves, our children, and to some extent our community. These are attainable dreams for everyone — it's easy to blame big business, lack of jobs, corrupt government, the americans, the japanese, whatever, but ultimately it is your choice whether you'd like to be free or whether you prefer the life of a slave.

The “American Dream,” (and I mean that in the sense that it applies to all people, everywhere on this planet) as it was hinted at in the original paperwork that was drafted in 1776 by Jefferson (one of America's many betrayed heroes), is still very attainable, and it is as true and honourable an ideal today as it was then.

A little news? A book review?

OK, it's kind of hard to do news stuff from here, because obviously I can read a LOT faster than a dialup modem can download stories (because of the graphics primarily). First I'd like to thank Josh for giving me a copy of “The Real Lincoln” at the BBQ. It's a mindblowing and misconception shattering book, that is absolutely terrifying in the context of what's going on now. It goes to show a few things that I know modern America doesn't want us to know:

  • That slavery was dying out in the South (and the rest of the world) quite peacefully, while the North pushed hard for an all-white nation, and was the racist centre of America at the time — most historians are clear that overall most of America's racism was in the North at the time.
  • That the Emancipation Proclamation was no more than a political stunt aimed at creating a slave rebellion in the South (remember, only Confederate slaves were freed, and they were banned from entering most Northern States).
  • That Lincoln kick-started a process of government “favors” to big business — and government debt and inflation — that eventually led to most of the wars in the Western hemisphere.
  • That the North's “restorations” and black voter manipulation in the South were the cause of most of modern America's racial tension (they took away the whites right to vote, gave it to the blacks on the condition that they voted Republican, and promised the blacks the white's proptery, but then never came through). In addition, after the Civil War, they ordered the total extermination of the Plains Indians.
  • That when after two years of getting trounced by the Confederate armies, the North eventually won the war through massive war crimes and terrorism — that's right — America is a rogue terrorist nation. There were massive “battles” which constituted of not much more than raping and pillaging civilian centres, and whole towns of no military value were destroyed.
  • That the dictator Lincoln effectively threw out the Constitution and made America the horrible place that it is today (in comparison to what the founding fathers wanted it to be). He jailed opposing politicians, voters, publishers, and suspended habeus corpus and instituted martial law for most of his reign.
  • That after the Civil War, the North instituted nation-wide government sponsored schools with the sole purpose of re-writing history, a process that obviously continues today.
  • He got rid of states rights (a fundamental neccessity in American government) and consolidated all power in the central government, and turned America into a far more despicable version of what its founding fathers sought to flee.

Anyway, that only scrapes the surface. This book is a MUST READ, especially if you're an American that has spent their life being lied to by the bastards that stole your country from you about a hundred and fifty years ago. Maybe if enough people read this book, America will remember WHY it was formed, and what a beautiful place it was meant to be. (Here's a link to the book on Amazon).

Along the lines of the book, here's something to click: the military spending clock. If you'd like more bad news, now the US is talking about looking for oil in Africa, and using military might to do it — yeah, oil has turned out real well so far. Think about the cost, then contrast that to the cost of solar and wind and tidal based power generation systems, which are far safer (and far cheaper) on every level… If you want even more echoing of the civil war, this is it. Anyway, just go read the book. You won't regret it.

The view from here

I was wondering yesterday — will living in a rather slow and tranquil place make me a part of its demeanor? I have a fear (or maybe one day I will admit that it is hope) that my next book will be less akin to the ModCon book than to Walden. Of course, in five hundred years, will people be reading Walden or will they be reading ModCon? As much as I'd like to take credit for the future, I think we all know it's Walden that stands the test of time.

We have a number of errands today, and when I'm done this post and a few replies, I'm off to unload the truck. Hopefully I find my second pair of glasses — yesterday, while lying in the grass, the dog pounced full force on my face, seized them as a treasure, and bounded off across the fields with them. We searched a while, but for now I am somewhat blurry. In any case, I can still appreciate this view from our window:

Speed: 26.4 Kbps

After a few problems (both the U-Haul trailer and the truck are trashed), everyone is here safely, albeit exhausted. It's very warm out here — at least fifteen degrees hotter than Toronto — and very pretty of course as well. Our apartment has a nice view overlooking the Miramichi river and right across the road is a nice beach for Leeta to play on.

In the next couple of days we'll begin the task ahead. Right now I'm downloading Eudora to Rachel's computer (mine doesn't have a modem in it right now, and isn't even unpacked yet) so I can attempt to download the monstrous quantity of mail sitting on the server — I expect the download to take a full 24 hours (the two way satellite will be ordered soon enough).

Anyway, I probably won't be able to post too much in the next week, but I will be working on a variety of neat things, some IAM, some BME, and some offline (thankfully). It's very nice lying in the grass.

Not that I needed reminding, but this trip is really drilling into me just how much I Love Rachel and how glad I am that she's decided to take part in this adventure.


The BBQ was lots of fun; it went really well! A quick run down would include I think around two hundred people, four or five cop cars (uneventful, don't worry), loads of fireworks, beer, lots and lots of food eaten, a four way knee suspension, three “normal” suspensions, fire blowing, and plenty more! Definitely a good final Toronto-base party… Now to rest a while and prepare for maritime madness.

We shot an hour of video that I'll edit and post when I'm resettled, but for now here are a few of the blurry Polaroid shots I took. My apologies to the people in them, I seem to be skilled at taking photos right as a person is blinking or talking.