XR – a post disruption strategy (October 2019 de-briefing)

‘Climate change’ is now heard much more in the media, but events suggest that XR’s amazingly successful strategy has taken us as far as it can. My view is reinforced by the adverse publicity from the Canning Town debacle. This world-wide, spontaneous movement is running without lubrication for the mind set change necessary before the obvious ‘system’ changes become thinkable.

I was pleasantly surprised several weeks ago by the ‘thumbs up’ signs we got from motorists we had just disrupted by ‘swarming’. But they were only a small minority.

I came back from London (I was there for the second week) wondering whether a hunger strike was necessary after all. But of course this would not work, because no one would support me, even those as terrified of the crisis as I am. Very few see the connection between climate breakdown and the basic income (UBI) as kick starting measures  which have been available ever since the 1972 MIT Limits to Growth report.

The last straw if I needed one was at the Leeds XR ‘De-briefing’ meeting last Monday. As soon as I started to explain the basic income as relevant, a woman in the group (10 of us, there were c.70 present in all) angrily got up and stated “If this person is going to talk about the basic income again, I am going somewhere else. I understand the basic income.”

This woman is one of a chorus telling me the same message. Why do I persist in upsetting people? This blog explores the reasons not enough, has been done since 1972, so that in 2019 XR thinks over-exploitation threatens the entire ecosphere. My critic probably understands the UBI correctly as self-evident social justice, but she, and many others miss its role in enabling downsizing the economy. If they saw the connection, they would join me in screaming “UBI” from the house tops.

In 1729 Jonathan Swift wrote A modest Proposal,a satirical proposal to solve a food shortage by poor people selling their (too many) babies to rich people for food. The Easter Islanders actually ate fully grown people for the same reason, but it did have the desired effect- the population declined to a sustainable level, when, to be fair to the Easter Islanders, they stopped eating people.

Nowadays population growth is still a problem. but decreasing, though it is a growing factor in migration. Per capita economic growth is now the main threat.

As I pointed out last week, a tribe in New Guinea had a moneyless basic income, so as to keep their ecological footprint under control. I wonder if they learned the Easter Island hard way?

Does my critic, or anyone else in XR, have a better post-disruption plan?

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