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offsite link The Wholesome Photo of the Month Thu May 09, 2024 11:01 | Anti-Empire

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The Saker
A bird's eye view of the vineyard

offsite link Alternative Copy of thesaker.is site is available Thu May 25, 2023 14:38 | Ice-Saker-V6bKu3nz
Alternative site: https://thesaker.si/saker-a... Site was created using the downloads provided Regards Herb

offsite link The Saker blog is now frozen Tue Feb 28, 2023 23:55 | The Saker
Dear friends As I have previously announced, we are now “freezing” the blog.  We are also making archives of the blog available for free download in various formats (see below). 

offsite link What do you make of the Russia and China Partnership? Tue Feb 28, 2023 16:26 | The Saker
by Mr. Allen for the Saker blog Over the last few years, we hear leaders from both Russia and China pronouncing that they have formed a relationship where there are

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Lockdown Skeptics

The Daily Sceptic

offsite link Read it and Weep: The BBC Journalists Taking Home Six Figure Salaries Courtesy of the Licence Fee Pa... Tue Jul 23, 2024 13:45 | Will Jones
Read it and weep: the list of the BBC journalists taking home six figure salaries courtesy of the licence fee payer. Disgraced presenter Huw Edwards came top with £475k despite being off air for nine months of the year.
The post Read it and Weep: The BBC Journalists Taking Home Six Figure Salaries Courtesy of the Licence Fee Payer appeared first on The Daily Sceptic.

offsite link David Lammy: The Foreign Secretary Who Called Trump ?a Racist KKK and Nazi Sympathiser? and Refuses ... Tue Jul 23, 2024 12:43 | Peter Harris
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offsite link The BBC Has ?Fact-Checked? Labour?s Claim that Renewables are Cheaper than Fossil Fuels and Declared... Tue Jul 23, 2024 07:00 | Paul Homewood
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The post The BBC Has ?Fact-Checked? Labour?s Claim that Renewables are Cheaper than Fossil Fuels and Declared it to be True. But it?s False appeared first on The Daily Sceptic.

offsite link News Round-Up Tue Jul 23, 2024 01:16 | Richard Eldred
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Adapt Or Die

category international | environment | opinion/analysis author Friday May 30, 2008 19:01author by dunkauthor email d.crowley at ecointelligentgrowth dot netauthor address BCN Report this post to the editors

Blessed Unrest @ Letterfrack?

As a species we are finally waking up to the Climatic crisis that we have stupidly gotten ourselves into. After many years of not listening, people now realise the problem we face: ADAPT OR DIE. Some see the human species as a cancer that should die off, a natural end for a silly species. But others have a vision of a sustainable world, a vision that drives them to think differently, act differently, design differently, live differently. For many its simple little lifestyle changes, for others its nothing short of the next chapter in this unfolding strange story of civilization: the ecological revolution.
cities as forests : infrastructure and participation
cities as forests : infrastructure and participation

From Dublin to Spain to the World

Next week in the Northern Spanish city of Santandar, a critical dialogue will happen about the somewhat radical idea of "Cities as Forests". This conference will examine a topic whose outcome is to find out what is an eco city, how do we construct them and with that how do we live sustainably.

We will be talking about the ideas and lessons learned from Dublin and its proposal of the "Botanic Spine", an 18km Greenway and CPUL (continuous productive urban landscape) for the city. We will talk about the creation of the 5 community organic gardens that were created along this green route and the how’s and why's of why only one of these gardens still exist; Dolphins Barn Garden or South Circular Garden, as it is now referred to. We will talk about the bike rides along the canals, the ideas of a metro station in the phoenix park, the hundred plus native Irish trees that were freely given to schools, women’s centres, homeless shelters and Larry O`Tooles roof garden in Sheriff Street. We will talk about the process of having bold dreams and attempting to turn them into realities....

Waste = Food

The idea of "Cities as Forests" is part of a longer simple yet genius idea from revolutionary design architect and "Hero of the planet" Bill Mc Donough: "Buildings as trees, cities as forests". He and his German materials engineer partner Michael Braungart, who also has been a Greenpeace direct action protester, have spent the last 10 years dreaming of how to remake the entire world, they imagine a sustainable world of creation, construction, life, deconstruction in a closed loop system. “Waste = Food”. There is no waste, all stuff goes back into the system, be it the nutrient or the material cycle, exactly the same way that a tree works. They call their design revolution “Cradle to Cradle” and its caught on, BIGTIME. From chairs, to shoes, to cars, to factories, to communities, to US states, to 12 Chinese eco cities… its growing and growing and its goal is: "A delightfully diverse, safe, healthy and just World, with clean air, water, soil and power – economically, equitably, economically and elegantly enjoyed.” Or in simpler terms:
"How do we love all of the children of all species for all time."

Spaceship Earth

The idea of re-imagining, redesigning and remaking the world, from a design point of view, is nothing new, it’s the game civilisation has been playing for all of time. This time the critical difference is that we are aware of our limits, ie, the rules within which we have to play. We live in a finite world, a closed system, a little rock in a strange universe that has given us the miracle conditions we now live in that allow us experience life. We have to respect this and work with this. We have to be aware of, listen to and cherish our mother; Gaia, Patcha Mama, Mother Earth. US architect / genius Buckminster Fulller summed up what we have to sort out in his 1969 book “Operating manual for Spaceship Earth”, in an excellent interview with him in 1974 he states the need for a “design revolution”, he proposed many radical ideas and structures that were about doing more with less: biodomes, dymaxiom cars, dome for Manhattan and more… those ideas have influenced many top architects and collectives such as Norman Foster, Richard Rogers, Archigram....... and now to this list has been added the names Mc Donough and Michael Braungart,

The Paradigm Shift

For many people this age is the most profound, interesting, beautiful and challenging that we have ever experienced. Austrian Physicist, hippy, author, systems theorist, political commentator and creator of the “centre for ecoliteracy” In Berkley, California, calls this time of change of worldview the Paradigm Shift. He states it has been underway since the 1920’s, when the quantum physicists delved into the atom and saw that their “Scientific” world view was simply wrong and that the new world view, which had just been proved by their tools, was nearly exactly as was described in the Eastern philosophies of Buddhism, Hinduism and Taoism. (Old view saw atoms as the smallest solid bits of matter, new view saw everything as ever flowing energy that gave the appearance of stability and solidity that we perceive daily) But from those strange days (/ daze) of Heisenburg staring at trees in disbelief our world view has been severely shaken in all its disciplines, a questioning has begun and, Capra argues, this is the direct reason for the breakdown of old ways and emergence of newer ways of thinking, being, living: the ending of old religious dogma and systems, the emergence of individual spirituality, emergence of womens movements, civil rights, sexual freedom, global justice. We saw the explosion of rock music in the 60´s, the hippy movement, we saw students and workers demanding an end to wars and the creation of an international system of people power in 1968 in Paris, Chicago, Mexico, Prague, Memhis, Pakistan, Derry…….and more recently the emergence of the “anti-globalisation” movement since the “day the political landscape was changed forever”, November 30th 1999, when the WTO talks were shut down in Seattle by Grannies, kids dressed as turtles, trade unionists, alternative media activists, Black African farmers and anarchists.

Blessed Unrest

Paul Hawken, an ecologist from the US, is also talking about these days as a profound time because we are finally seeing something that we have never seen before in the history of civilisation, he refers to this period as the immune system of humanity finally kicking in, the waking up that the Buddha referred to. He sees 3 distinct strands of life merging: indigenous culture, the environmental movement and the social justice movement. A few years back he started to wonder how many little groups are out there doing their thing: kids cleaning a beach every year, anti war groups in asia, eco builders in Denmark, peace clowns in Russia, writers in China…. Unsure of how many, he and his collective started building a directory of whose doing what and it grew and grew… he´s convinced there are millions and millions of all these little groups, as he states from his presentation at Bioneers:

It is my belief that we are part of a movement that is greater and deeper and broader than we ourselves know, or can know. It flies under the radar of the media, by and large. It is non violent, it is grassroots, it has no cluster bombs, no armies and no helicopters. It has no central ideology. A male vertebrae is not in charge. This unnamed movement is the most diverse movement the world has ever seen. The very word movement, I think, is too small to describe it. No one started this world view, No one is in charge of it, there is no orthodoxy. It is global, classless, unquenchable and tireless. The shared understanding is arising spontaneously from different economic sectors, cultures, regions and cohorts; it is growing and spreading worldwide with no exception. It has many roots, but primarily the origins are indigenous culture, the environment and social justice movements. Those 3 sectors and their sub sectors are intertwining, morphing, enlarging. This is no longer, or simply about resources or infractions on injustice, this is fundamentally a civil rights movement, a human rights movement, this is the democracy movement, it is the coming world.

In his book he gives a title to this movement: “Blessed Unrest” and he outlines how this phenomenon has been coming to life and growing organically in a way similar to a network system. Its funny and its true, as the subtitle puts it: “How the largest movement in the world came into being, and why no one saw it coming.”

The craic at Letterfrack?

Since 1981 a group of European architectural students have been organizing themselves to meet somewhere in Europe to spend 2 weeks living, working, playing together, an autogestion architecture and life summer school of sorts. Originally it started in Liverpool, when concerned students put a call out for assistance to positively assist the cities docks area as industry wound up, workspaces shut down and surrounding workers housing saw increase in abondanment and crime. A bit similar to the Sheriff Street and East wall communities in Dublin. So these, what I can only imagine as, passionate social minded architects came and did things such as turn abondended dead space into playgrounds and had a profound time of learning. In short, it seems, architecture mattered.

EASA is the name of this collective, which stands for European Architecture Students Assembly, it is the largest student architecture group in Europe and normally a gathering consists of more than 400 of them from all corners of Europe and Beyond. It has always had a magical spirit about it.

in early 90’s EASA visited Dublin in the winter, perhaps you remember footsteps sprayed around the city’s streets? Then the following year it got stuck into what was perhaps its most “real” learning time, the streets, spaces and players of a then brutal, bloody and dangerous sectarian Belfast. EASA has always been “non-political”, in times of conflict and war the bringing together of peoples from different sides and having them live and work together sends out a powerful message of hope. But in these times when everything is politically weighted: “where does your water comes from, do you pay for it, are the charges affordable….” in the safe confines of “fortress Europe” we need not worry too much about these issues, as much as our Bolivian friends do, for example, but as we are a global community we must understand the other world, the world of LOS OTROS.

20 years after Liverpool, EASA was still going strong in terms of the meetings of peoples, which is always a hugely important and enjoyable thing. But, in terms of that getting stuck into full on situations, the “real world” lets call it, by 2002 it seemed there was less magic about. EASA’s world had drifted like so many other things of importance as the years went from DIY punk to corporate yuppie. It seemed that architecture had moved from the passionate days of squatting buildings to fight for housing rights, as in Dublin ’69, to the empty, but wealthier world of what’s fashionable at the Milan catwalk. What is the latest design fad, what cladding looks nicer: architecture had become nothing more important than nice little, and not so little, buildings looking nice in fashion and design mags. The architects forgot that people have to live in these sculptures.

From EASA’s early year experiments in “trouble spots”, the meetings tended to happen more now in “safe” spaces like greek islands with little time for investigation into complex urban conditions and more time for intimate inter cultural exchange, of the romantic sort. These encounters are great, always were, always will be, but there seemed to be a lack of something, a lack of spirit. Then in the Danish island of Bornholme after busy days of building a strawbale house for kindergarden kids a bold French man made a bold proposal: to go back to the city, and all her troubles. To venture to la Condition Publique and the troubled territory it existed in, in the French workers area of Roubaix in Lille. That year, 2004 Lille was the city of culture and EASA, along with their space collaborators EXYZT, were asked to participate in the “neighbourhood of small utopias”. They were invited to come to this zone that desperately needed help and to create a bit of magic, to excite the local, mostly north african, community, to attempt to give them hope, to give them tools to organise and take back ownership of their streets, now that drug wars had dictated no go areas… The organisers said “EASA 2005 will be a political act”, It was a big ask, perhaps too big?

Again was the chance for EASA to try to work in the “real” world of architecture and urbanism, to get stuck into a place with its share of problems, but with that, to try to create solutions. And somewhere in that process unleash the deep joy that goes along with participating in such important process’s that matter.

Unfortunately the experiment failed. Failed because most, not all, but most of EASA had got too accustomed to the easy stress free life, perhaps they had got too arrogant and forgotten how to say hello to strangers? For the most part they choose to work and play with only themselves within the safety confines of the security controlled la CP.

It does have to be said that a very small part of EASA did venture DEHORS, outside, and that connections were made with locals, and that those local kids were excited enough to venture into what was for them the “other world”, the exclusive world that belonged to cops, security and architects. These kids became the teachers for the architects, they thought their traditional stitching techniques they had learned from their Algerian grandmothers while colloborating on the roubaix tapestry.. For those few, some beautiful shared projects and experiences happened. The questions of who are the architects and architecture serving who were clear.

The experiment could have worked, If 400 + people were unafraid and willing to leave the land of safety with a desire for it to work, to really try to create something beautiful and meaningful, it could have been… But, it didn’t. the sad thing is that EASA’s failure further widened the divide between la CP and “her” people. The EASA failure put an end to those adventures for some, there were other groups and spaces to seek out and connect with. But for most, EASA carried on, back in the safe world. It is still a fine world, it just could have been something deeper.

So roll on 3 years, by which time the mainstream trends and governments had realized there was a global crisis, sustainability had become the new buzz word, architects talked again of important issues. 2008; This summer from August 9 till 24th, EASA is coming again to Ireland where they will be investigating / exploring / playing with the idea of ADAPTATION. They will be in Dublin for 2 nights and will then cross the island to live in and work out of the furniture college of Letterfrack. In terms of build up it seems to be the most impressive lead up ever, its seems the irish are buzzed up about this summer, they have already created a dialogue in the media and architecture mags. They have written a clear and thorough booklet outlining their objectives as well telling their islands story, so far. They seek to understand Ireland and the housing problems, they point out flawed planning examples, the point when its necessary to point. But from this event, what will arise?
it seems again there is that spirit to understand, the wish to work with the guts of things, to come up with solutions, we will have to see how it goes. Perhaps weve gone full circle, to a time when again architects seek to make a difference?

Who knows? The only sure thing is that without a doubt, there will be music playing, waves rolled in, hills walked on, pints supped, friendships forged and without a doubt there will be some amount of craic this summer in Letterfrack..

critical videos

William McDonough: The wisdom of designing Cradle to Cradle


Buckminster Fuller World Game Synergy Anticapatory

Fritjof Capra, The Systems View of Life

Paul Hawken : Blessed Unrest

wandering workshop : EASA workshop dehors LA CP

related links:


the roubaix tapestry

le petit cinema

"architecture is a political act"

which leads to:
Seriously Duncan

related to upcoiming eco city talk

European Greenways Association

European Greenways Association

What are Greenways?

CASE STUDY: REVER (REseau Vert EuRopeen/European Green Network) Crossing Brussels-Capital Region

New York Greenways map
A Greenway Plan for New York City, 1993

Polish Greenways signposts

Mc Donough : Buildings as Trees

Mile end city park, London

Botanic Spine : 18km Greenway and CPUL for Dublin City, Greening the city, Connecting communities
video channel on youtube: http://www.youtube.com/view_play_list?p=2C7F724B0B7439D0

Dublin greenway treewalk 2005

Dolphins Barn community garden, Dublin

CPUL (continous productive urban landscape)
The Continuous Picnic : http://www.lfa2008.org/event.php?id=103&name=The+Contin...icnic

green corridors in cities

cities as forests : Botanic Spine, Dublin greenway and CPUL
cities as forests : Botanic Spine, Dublin greenway and CPUL

la condition publique : a spaceship for magic?
la condition publique : a spaceship for magic?

Vanity fair asks for new US "green" revolution
Vanity fair asks for new US "green" revolution

PDF Document Cities as forests : eco city ideas from Dublin to Santandar 0.97 Mb

author by dunkpublication date Sun Jun 01, 2008 22:40author address author phone Report this post to the editors

When architecture learns from "french" pirates...

2 films from those strange days at La CP( the condition publique), the first "THE COLLECTIVE CONTRUCTION GAME..." shows the the growth of one of our living spaces, a huge factory floor gets a scaffolding system built in it, the space grows as desires dictate new directions of growth. This system was developed by the EXYZT collective, who went on to be invited by Patrick Bouchain to construct the similar scaffold system "pirate ship" that was METAVILLA, or the 3 month lived in space that was the french pavillion at the last architectural bienalle. The second film is one from one of the workshops that went Dehors, outside, the confines of the factory to interact with the neighbourhood. the "wandering workshop" was the workshop name and part of it invovled turning a shopping trolley into "le petit cinema" (the small cinema), a mobile unit that requested collaboration from strangers for something magic to happen, in short the trolley had a tail, an extension cable that needed plugging into somewhere with electricity to bring the cinema to life. With the trolley there was the excuse to approach strangers, some didn't help but some did, local shopkeepers, residents etc..... some thought the group were nuts, maybe they were a little bit, but many who obliged were quite intriqued by what unfolded, maybe the short film will explain far better. Planxty, warlords of pez, indymedia ireland mayday 04, undercurrents flix, were some of the things shown. In a muslim neighbourhood there was much interest in the political films due to the "war on terror" then, and still, present. The kids loved the cartoon films and seemed to really love hip hop... there was talk of making a film with the kids on one special street, we started to script the story, it came from the kids naming all the cats of the street and a story they weaved as their imaginations let rip... We never got to make that film due to internal EASA problems, but maybe one day we will return, who knows?

It is interesting to note how politics works in architecture, and vice versa. There is much to comment on, from all angles, but something magical and profoundly interesting, and yes, very political, was tried at that last bienalle. By the way, the bienalle is sort of the olympics for the world of architecture, and while there is much of the soulless world of architecture presented and represented there, sometimes there is something important communicated or facilitated by this system. The French ministry of culture asked Bouchain to represent France 2 times previous and he turned them down, 3rd time he said he would run the show on 2 conditions; firstly they give him all the cash to spend as he wished, on what, for what was his decision and his alond, 2nd that he got full control of the "exhibition" and dictated what exactly happened and when. Reluctantly, they handed over the cash and let him do his thing. The first thing he did was to tell the powers that the exhibion would be a bit different in 2006, that rather than stuff to look at on walls, that him and his friends would occupy the space, live in it, work in it, invite strangers in to play.... a loose collective formed, with Bouchain having the ultimate word on things, artists, architects, planners, philosophers, writers, hackers, djs, film makers, geographers, gardeners, builders, barbers all stuck on yellow t shirts, lived, played, discussed...... as the METAVILLA manifesto said on its walls:

The occupation of a palace

By a jubilant crowd is a common image of revoluionary excesses. It has been witnessed in various forms throughout the ages, depending on the historical context. The fact that the image keeps recurring makes it a ritual and necessary representation, an ingredient of the revolution itself. It embodies the hope for justice through the fair redistribution of
space. Occupation is the architectural expression of a social vision.

Metacity / Metavilla attempts to put this collective movement into practice. This event is to a classic architectural exhibition what implementation is to a concept. The public can experience the architectural design displayed there, and particularly assess the practical ideal being presented, not just as a utopian theory but as a concrete action that needs to be accomplished. In occupying this national emancipated pavilion and opening it up to the public in this unusual way, an architectural act is being performed.Probably the only such act that can be made in these times of insecurity and underlying tensions of war. The welcome of strangers, implacably "other", is more than ever a relevant act. Happily the joyful city on show in the pavilion really does exist, here and elsewhere. This exhibition is just a pointer.

The "official" interpreters of the biennalle's architectural dialogue came in the first week, looked around, were brought to all the hip parties in the secure and closed zone, they were led through the spaces and the exhibitions, they all seemed to enjoy the French pavilion, it was said to have the best partys, they liked the hedonism of it, after this first week they went back to their worlds to comment on what the bienalle 2006 was all about. BUT, in doing so they missed the point of METAVILLA, it was an open evolving system with different inputs and situations, the invitation of changing discussions. One such dialogue which it seems was missed by all the ark mags other vessals of critical dissemenation, was that of "Moments D`Architectures", a weeklong series of conversations about the ecology of things, which simply means the relationship of things to each other, Bouchain invited his old friend and indeed, as he stated himself, "hero", Lucian Kroll, a 70+ year old Belgian anarchist architect. Lucien in turn invited his friends to talk about a theme each day. I would say that this dialogue was perhaps the most critical discussion that happened, We recorded these discussions and they are presented for listening to and further dissemenation below. (Indymedia radio was offline for over a year, thereby making them unaccessible, but thankfully its back, they are back) Lucien introduced the week of discussions with a poster that included thoughts from René Schérer, a french libertarian philosopher political commentator from his essay "the Zeus of hositaltity":

"As a matter of urgency, we must stop considering architecture, urban and landscape design as products of techniques, rationalities, methods, economy, hard sciences, specifications, or narcissism. Last year, in the French Clichy-sous-Bois, we saw riots when young people burned 1000 cars in 20 days as well as many public buildings, and how it had been triggered by a criminal modern architecture. If the 20th century was overwhelmed by the power of technology authority, the 21st century will probably endeavour to soften and try to rehumanize its citizen`s behaviours and by the way, also its architecture.

We should first place inhabited environmant along with human and global knowledge system: intuitive, ecological, relational, emotional, experienced, etc. Instead of seeing it as a frigid mechanism or as merchandise.

Only after that, may we talk abut inventing tools and intelligence: no one is useless as a servant, provided that he or she renounces taking power for him-herself. Hence, weshould reinvent the friendly and free relations we had with our techniques because they have become autistic and harmful. Architecture will then become once again humanitarian and hospi-table as it was in the pre-human epoch. "

It is interesting that he was part of the philosophical background of Mai '68, which we are currently remembering these days in its 40th anniversary. Well some of us are anyway, one of the criticisms of EASA is the lack of critical dialogue, a recent post on their blog talking about '68 has once again led to some heated argument, or perhaps moreso, childish name calling. But the question is whether todays young architects possess the passion to attempt to use architecture as a tool to better the world, or as to humanize it, or as Schérer suggests; to re-humanize it.

While not everything was bright rosy and perfect with the pirate ship of METAVILLA, it surely had a lot of things going toward the creation of this better world, I suggest that those funny pirates EXYZT have demonstrated that bold creative intelligent architecture is back, and that anyone can use it:

Be utopian. We want to build new worlds where fiction is reality and games are new rules for democraty. We want to encourage creativity, reflexion and renew social behaviours. If space is made by dynamics of exchange, then everybody can be the architects of our world.

So, from here what?

check out what EASA are about and have been about, then join us in a day of walking and talking in August. and from there we will see how it all unfolds.....




wandering workshop




their games at METTAVILLA

venice superblog, A portal of sorts for bienale discussion and a pirate hi-jacking of sorts

Venice Biennale Architecture

EASA 2008 @ Letterfrack
excellent tutor pack created by the easa08 team:
further downloads: http://www.easa008.ie/download.html

METAVILLA manifesto

Patrick Bouchain

Lucien Kroll: Moments D`Architectures

René Schérer

Onboard the (French) pirate ship METAVILLA (whats being pointed at in Venice this year?

40 years ago this month in Paris….Mai 68
http://easa.antville.org/stories/1798521/ (the EASA blog)
and its initial post with more links to vids and audio on IMC-IE
excellent audio:
1968, Forty Years Later: Tariq Ali Looks Back on a Pivotal Year in the Global Struggle for Social Justice

fuspey » writings

:::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::: Moments D`Architectures, the audio files

Day 1 : no recording available at present

Day 2 : architecture : why is participation important (1 hr 38 mns)
invited friend : Peter Blundell-Jones

Day 3 : architecture and the participation of the user (1 hour 25 mns)
invited friend : Peter Hubner

Day 4 : From Bauhaus to our uncles house: eco decolonisation ( 1 hr 50 mins )
invited friend : Sergio Porto, human space lab

Day 5 : eco landcapes (1 hour) (in italian mostly)
invited friend : Luigi Cavallari

Day 6 : open conclusions from the week (2.5 hours)
invited friend : Ugo Sasso from Bioarchitettura and many more

le petit cinema dehors la condition publique
le petit cinema dehors la condition publique

METAVILLA, pirate ship @ Venice 2006: part of the blessed unrest
METAVILLA, pirate ship @ Venice 2006: part of the blessed unrest

the occupation of a palace : YELLOW WALL @ METAVILLA
the occupation of a palace : YELLOW WALL @ METAVILLA

results of a criminal modern architecture
results of a criminal modern architecture

ADAPTATION; EASA comes to Ireland.....
ADAPTATION; EASA comes to Ireland.....

author by realistpublication date Mon Jun 02, 2008 00:48author address author phone Report this post to the editors

fact is, for every kid picking up a few crisp bags on the beach, there is 10000 people who don't care about anything, shitting, eating and dousing their environment with a myriad of chemicals sold to them by the media driven unstoppable sociopathic profit driven rotten capitalist machine.

Millions and millions of people go home and mindlessly conceive more muling polluting cabbages to live the exact same pointless slave consumer lives. more and more resources are needed to sustain this stupid carosel and the only thing that will stop all of this is when the bough breaks.

There are far too many humans on the planet. Only cheap oil allows this to continue. Once the cheap oil stops there will be a terrible period of re-adjustment and many people will die of hunger and disease. Thats the reality. Climate change is just the icing on this man made disaster. Some bad weather, drowning, further food production issues and some serious refugee problems perhaps

We need to be using the remaining oil to build the infrastructure we will need to survive when the oil runs out but instead it's being pissed away in SUV's churning away in traffic jams.

Man is a stupid arrogant species. Just a dumb randy greedy monkey with a veneer of civilisation on top. If only you could just take the enlightened few individual specimens away in a ship and start again somewhere else and leave the rest to fuck, fight, poison and starve themselves like the monkeys they are. It is probably for the best that man will eventually kill himself off. It's just a pity that he will take so many other innocent species along with him.

We are sending very expensive spaceships to mars and scouring the universe for other habitable worlds , so far with little success, but the fact is we have paradise here and yet all we can do is use it as an industrial toilet. pathetically stupid. See you all in the coming dark age. And make sure to bring your best recipies for humans and jellyfish 'cos thats all there will be to eat.

author by billy idlepublication date Mon Jun 02, 2008 13:56author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Great post there realist - sums it all up really!! - I've been thinking about this alot recently and came to the conclusion that the only way humanity can survive is for the people who have the sense to realise whats unfolding and who want to escape from the "greed is good" capitalist kulag in which we are all imprisoned is to try and start our own self contained communties cut-off from the prevailing consumer culture and the so-called democracies that underpin it. Not easy I know and maybe not even attaineable but I reckon its our only shot.

author by Scepticpublication date Mon Jun 02, 2008 20:49author address author phone Report this post to the editors

“Greed is good” is a cliché from a provocative 1987 Hollywood movie which has little to do with the economic theory of capitalism as formulated by Smith which demonstrated how self interest and competition “operating in a social framework which ultimately depends on adherence to moral obligations, can lead to economic well-being and prosperity”. In reality these days capitalism means that not everything or not even most things need be owned, operated and managed by the State – the latter of which is now a greatly discredited of an idea. As such it is churlish and backward looking to be using the term “capitalism” as one of abuse. Or as if there is something morally superior in itself about being a “socialist” or a critic of capitalism. Such pronouncements issue forth as if there has been no evolution of economic and political thought in the life of experience since the 1870s. In any case most OECD States adopt models for their economies that are mixed social market ones. In most cases it is the non-government sector that produces the bulk of the wealth while the State taxes and regulates it and redistributes wealth socially as required. As for people being “imprisoned” in capitalism it is to the market economies people are fleeing to in their millions as refugees seeking economic and other opportunities. With the exception of China it is those states which are economically based on market systems are not just the wealthiest nationality and for ordinary people but also the most free in civil and political terms.

Also with regard to ecological despair don’t ignore that tremendous progress in many areas has been made since the 1960’s. The Great Lakes were an area of appalling pollution then and now there are fully restored – ditto the Thames. The US now has just about the cleanest air of any industrial nation – back then it was among the very worst. Don’t underestimate the capacity to overcome even the greatest problems. Too much green type ideology and dogma is bad for your state of mind.

author by Oldtimerpublication date Tue Jun 03, 2008 13:15author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Confuseus say:

"There is enough of everything in the world to meet all the needs of mankind, but not its greed".

author by dunkpublication date Wed Jun 04, 2008 14:02author email fuspey at yahoo dot co dot ukauthor address author phone Report this post to the editors

Take a few seconds to look at the image, an image of (y)our home from space. Think about how odd it is. What are the chances of it all happening this way..... very slim. Then think about what are the chances of us sorting out our "eco" mess....?... slim, yes, but not as slim as us existing here. So from there, if you weigh it up, the chances of us sorting our mess are slimmer than us existing here, but we do, so if thats the case, well then, we can sort our mess....
(this is referred as to the "one short of infinity" theory...)

Did any of the above commentators watch the "critical" videos listed above, 6 of them?

While I can understand that when you look at the stats for what we have done, what we are doing now, and the lack of momentum from humans to change their ways...well it can feel dishearthening. But, the important thing is to believe that we CAN change. Humans are a very strange species and what makes us different has been the ability to intelligently adapt to survive. The essence of "living systems" is the fight to survive, to keep your self, family, species going. Many feel that we CAN, and indeed, WILL, sort our mess and with that live tomorrow in a more sustainable, smart, happy and healty way.

The most important things now are to have a full understanding of our planets performance and how we fit into this, then to work out what a sustainable system (or Bucky's "Spaceship Earth" ) looks like, thats where design and architecture come in, as Mc Donough says simply "We've got a design problem". Then, the hard bit, making it happen, as above points out that C2C "revolution" is already well underway..no talk as yet, from anyone on this idea.

The thing which gives a whack to all this is that many, myself included, who do see a different reality are driven by the HOPE that its achievable. As opposed to what I relate to what Z.MAG founder Micheal Albert referred to as "fighting the good fight", whereby people who know that change is not really possible still do things to state they are against something, ie F15, and all who marched against the impeding war in Iraq, what if they had all really believed that it and other wars could be stopped and with that they had done the things necessary to bring about that change. He stated, more or less: if you dont feel you can change things, dont bother, dont just go out to make yourself feel good. Do things knowing that you can change it all.

So from there and this concern about the ecological state of the world, many also find that spending time doing things to bring about change and spending time in nature also bring a profound sense of HOPE that things are ok, that we will get ourselves out of the mess. Its hard to describe, but many describe it.... it gives sense to life.

I REALLY encourage people to listen to Paul Hawken, its only 6 minutes. After listening to him, i got his book "blessed unrest" and it is truly truly inspiring, perhaps it will spark some of ye off, were you aware of it?

Personally I find being positive really helps, while cycnism and "being realistic" are at times very necessary, in Ireland, I feel there is too much negativism and lack of will to try to believe that things can change...its one of the reasons I left nearly 2 years ago.

Anyway, this is a critical dialogue, it will grow and grow. In august I hope we can meet in the real world and be excited by the challenge but also the journey we engage further on, to further adapt. In years to come we will be all dead but our actions today can secure the existence of our future families....

A post about this and trying to develop things is at:
August '08: discussions and actions in and about public space

For more about Paul Hawken and his views, and connections to that network of Blessed Unrest:

Check out the wiki of who is doing what, if your not on it, organise and get there, and enjoy the journey:
The first open source database of the hundreds of thousands of civil society organizations around the world dedicated to environmental restoration and social justice

From there you might want to watch a second fuller video (1 hr 20 mins, he arrives 11.30mins in, and it finishes with half hour questions from the floor)


In this time of Blesses Unrest: We are learning how to steer Spaceship Earth again
In this time of Blesses Unrest: We are learning how to steer Spaceship Earth again

Related Link: http://www.wiserearth.org/
author by dunkpublication date Wed Jun 11, 2008 12:15author address author phone Report this post to the editors

The above image of planet earth from space is a powerfull powerfull bit of information. It was off limits for some time, kept in the image bank of NASA for security or some other such notion. But then, someone pushed the right buttons and got it and other images of "home" from space accessible to the public. The man responsible was Stewart Brand, a futurist, among other things.

Since the counterculture Sixties, Stewart Brand has been a critical thinker and innovator who helped lay the foundations of our internetworked world.

For him we now live on "City Planet", passing the 50% urban point. He argues that this is something very hopefull for sustainability:
“End of rise of western world dominance, villages emptying, there is no unemployment in squatter cities, everyone works….1/6th of humanity is there, soon to be more, squatter cities have defused the population timebomb...”

Rural villages worldwide are being deserted, as billions of people flock to cities to live in teeming squatter camps and slums. Stewart Brand says this is a good thing. Why? It’ll take you 3 minutes to find out.

watch TED talk: the Stewart Brand: Why squatter cities are a good thing
and on youtube

and from there a very positive urban eco view, a 1 hour vid of a talk he gave in Sep 14 2006:

"City Planet" - Stewart Brand

more about Steward and his ideas and past actions:


"Given access to the information we need- humanity can make the world a better place." Stewart Brand
"Given access to the information we need- humanity can make the world a better place." Stewart Brand

Related Link: http://video.google.com/videoplay?docid=-5605852912915716592
author by dunkpublication date Sun Aug 10, 2008 09:40author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Things kick off for EASA today, 12 noon the open public discussion: Dublin's Metamorphosis, with guest speakers, followed by our Green and Blue walk. Hopefully we will have an interesting and critical exchange of ideas and from that the creation of better communities, processes of change, city, world...

Dublin’s Metamorphosis
A chaired presentation and discussion on the impact of social cultural and economic change on the built environment of Ireland in the last 15/20 years. The panel will be composed of leading figures from the fields of architecture, urbanism, politics and the arts.

Green and Blue walk: eco threads for Dublin city

The Botanic Spine is an architectural project for Dublin city in Ireland. The proposal is for an 18-kilometre ecological corridor, or greenway, for Dublin city, which is to be called the "botanic spine". The spine is a circular loop through the city that links up the river Liffey, the royal and grand canals, the botanic gardens and Europe's largest city park, the phoenix park. The spine is a "pearl necklace" type of park with the narrow line of the canal and the green space along its edges threading through a series of pocket parks, which house public buildings of interest. The Liffey will be spanned by a public walkway, alongside the rail bridge, through the soon to be developed lands around Heuston station and by an adjustable bridge spanning the river on the east side.

Climate camp 2008

On a different note, last Thursday I left the Climate camp 2008 in Kent, which was an excellent and extremely well organised and inspiring few days. The creation of temp communities that demonstrate alternatives to the present un-sustainable system that, if allowed to continue, will lead to end of life for human species. All people I talked with were truly blown away, myself included, at how such a healthy community was created so quickly, that was so horizontally well organised, how everyone took responsibility, mucked in and learned how to live in such an atmosphere quickly. And finally how people took direct action yesterday to confront Kingsnorth, in an attempt to shut it down, to stop a new wave of coal burning power stations. Coal is the dirtiest fossil fuel to burn and 7 new stations will hugely increase UK CO2 emmissions. Capping present emmissions is not enough, we have to radically reduce the worlds carbon emmissions to not allow a 2 degree increase in global temperature, if we dont.....Well, it could be good night humans..

The climate camp idea is growing, as Monbiot stated last year after his time living on camp, it is the begining of a movement... I expect in time there will be a situation where its not those that go, live and take action are seen as the minority, but the majority, and the question will become why are people not at climate camps, and from that taking the principles to their local communities, towns, cities...

See accompanying youtube vid for info on yesterdays direct action as well as calm reasons for the breaking of law, if and when appropriate...

Also listen to the radio programme we made as part of camp radio about the creation of sustainable communities and more:
TRANSITIONING: how to construct sustainable communities and what they will look like

Full climate camp radio programmes:

full coverage of camp:

Perhaps next year we might see a climate camp ireland?

Incidentnly, Irelands second Green gathering happened the same weekend... what are those "eco" and "green" peoples views about the necessity to quickly confront root causes of global warming and confront it with massive social movements, connected with the wider community being affected today by climate chaos: the poor in the global south.

Climate camp 2008: the movement(s) growing, from awareness, to participation, to action... ALIVE
Climate camp 2008: the movement(s) growing, from awareness, to participation, to action... ALIVE

Caption: Video Id: SkwpQnR3Pxg Type: Youtube Video
Embedded video Youtube Video


Embedded audio: http://stream.plentyfact.net/climatecamp-podcasts/wednesday_broadcast02.mp3

author by dunkpublication date Mon Jan 26, 2009 18:14author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Rob Hopkins: I think that it is something that People will sing antastic songs about in 50 years time. And I hope ill be around to hear them…



Last November the Transition town city conference happened. One of the TT network has made a short film about what was discussed, see below. The TT model is taking off, in Barcelona we had our first gathering and are presently organising for future building..

vid on youtube: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FFxpxbDL4kY
wiki post re the city conference:: http://transitiontowns.org/TransitionNetwork/CitiesConf...iteUp

related blogs / wikis / webs:

english speaking:

spanish speaking wiki

Transition Culture, an evolving exploration into the head, heart and hands of energy descent
Transition Culture, an evolving exploration into the head, heart and hands of energy descent

It is something that People will sing antastic songs about in 50 years time.
It is something that People will sing antastic songs about in 50 years time.

Caption: Video Id: FFxpxbDL4kY Type: Youtube Video
Embedded video Youtube Video

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