Posts tagged “orion magazine”

  • “To Live or Not To Live”: Derrick Jensen’s recent column in Orion Magazine

    “To Live or Not To Live”: Derrick Jensen’s recent column in Orion Magazine

    May 12, 2011

    "I’m far more interested in stopping the tragedy before it’s too late than I am in feeling sorrow or empathy for those who cannot or will not change their destructive behavior. What’s worse is that in this human-culture-as-tragic-hero narrative, the flaw is nothing so ignoble as greed, lust, jealousy, or even indecision. Rather, the tragic flaw this culture ascribes to itself is intelligence. We’re simply too smart to allow life on the planet to continue. And of course we are unable to change, so there is nothing to be done. Cue the tears, drop the curtain."

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  • Derrick Jensen and the “Age of Ooops”

    Derrick Jensen and the “Age of Ooops”

    March 11, 2011

    I’m not the only person who has noticed that those who are destroying the planet almost never pay any real costs themselves. What happened to Tony Hayward, CEO of British Petroleum, who among others should be held accountable for the massive Deepwater Horizon oil spill? He was released from his position with a $1.6 million severance payment, as well as an annual pension of about $1 million (he also holds several million shares of BP stock). While some daring souls have boldly asked whether it might be a teensy bit appropriate to, ahem, politely request an inquiry into whether this severance package should be reduced even the tiniest bit, I’ve not seen many public calls (though I’ve heard a lot of private calls) for Hayward’s head to be paraded around New Orleans on a pike.

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  • Derrick Jensen on the economy: “The Tyranny of Entitlement”

    Derrick Jensen on the economy: “The Tyranny of Entitlement”

    January 28, 2011

    "There are an awful lot of people who . . . simply absorb the perspective of the newscasters who say, “Economic growth, good; economic stagnation, bad.” And of course if you care more about the economic system than life on the planet, this is true. If, however, you care more about life than the economic system, it is not quite so true"

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  • Derrick Jensen: High On Progress

    Derrick Jensen: High On Progress

    May 5, 2010

    Progress. In vast stretches of the Pacific Ocean, there is forty-eight times as much plastic as phytoplankton. Progress. One million migratory songbirds die every day because of skyscrapers, cell-phone towers, domesticated cats, and other trappings of modern civilized life. Progress. A half million human children die every year as a direct result of so-called debt repayment from so-called third-world countries (the colonies) to so-called first-world countries (the nations that have undergone progress). Progress is polar bears swimming hundreds of miles to ice floes that have melted away, till finally they can swim no more. Progress is nuclear weapons, depleted uranium, and “drones” piloted from an office in Florida to kill people in Pakistan. Progress is the ability of fewer and fewer people to control more and more people, and to destroy more and more of the world. Progress is a god. Progress is God. Progress is killing the world. The evolutionary biologist Richard Dawkins said that science’s claim to truth is based on its “spectacular ability to make matter and energy jump through hoops on command.” Anthropologist Leslie White stated that “the primary function of culture” is to “harness and control energy.” Quite simply, this culture is about enslaving everyone and everything its members can get their hands (or machines) on. What is another word for making someone jump through hoops? Enslavement. In this culture, progress is measured by the ability to enslave, to control, and to do so with ever-increasing efficiency. The ultimate goal is to control everyone and everything. — >Derrick Jensen, Orion Magazine

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  • Derrick Jensen: “It’s time to lead, follow, or get out of the way”

    Derrick Jensen: “It’s time to lead, follow, or get out of the way”

    March 3, 2010

    Another 120 species went extinct today; they were my kin. I am not going to sit back and wait for every last piece of this living world to be dismembered. I’m going to fight like hell for those kin who remain—and I want everyone who cares to join me. Many are. But many are not. Some of those who are not are those who, for whatever reason, really don’t care. I worry about them. But I worry more about those who do care but have chosen not to fight. A fairly large subset of those who care but have chosen not to fight assert that lifestyle choice is the only possible response to the murder of the planet. They all carry the same essential message—and often use precisely the same words: Resistance isn’t possible. Resistance never works. Meanwhile, another 120 species went extinct today. They were my kin. —Derrick Jensen, in Orion Magazine

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  • Forget Shorter Showers by Derrick Jensen

    Forget Shorter Showers by Derrick Jensen

    July 16, 2009

    This piece by Derrick Jensen originally appeared in the July/August issue of Orion Magazine on July 7, and immediately sparked a debate among Orion readers about the nature and goals of the environmental movement—and about the "magical thinking" that leads to a reduced ability to meet those goals. To add your opinion, visit the discussion page here. Would any sane person think dumpster diving would have stopped Hitler, or that composting would have ended slavery or brought about the eight-hour workday, or that chopping wood and carrying water would have gotten people out of Tsarist prisons, or that dancing naked around a fire would have helped put in place the Voting Rights Act of 1957 or the Civil Rights Act of 1964? Then why now, with all the world at stake, do so many people retreat into these entirely personal “solutions”? —Derrick Jensen, from Forget Shorter Showers

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  • Derrick Jensen: The end of hope is the beginning of action

    Derrick Jensen: The end of hope is the beginning of action

    May 19, 2009

    A wonderful thing happens when you give up on hope, which is that you realize you never needed it in the first place. You realize that giving up on hope didn’t kill you. It didn’t even make you less effective. In fact it made you more effective, because you ceased relying on someone or something else to solve your problems—you ceased hoping your problems would somehow get solved through the magical assistance of God, the Great Mother, the Sierra Club, valiant tree-sitters, brave salmon, or even the Earth itself—and you just began doing whatever it takes to solve those problems yourself. When you give up on hope, something even better happens than it not killing you, which is that in some sense it does kill you. You die. And there’s a wonderful thing about being dead, which is that they—those in power—cannot really touch you anymore. —Derrick Jensen

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