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New Read: "Anarchism: A Collection of Revolutionary Writings" by Peter Kropotkin.

Apparently Kropotkin's writings inspired 's "The Dispossessed". I've been on a Russian Revolution history binge of late, so I'm excited to add this to the mix.

Will the community come out of the woodwork? 😃

"Basic Bakunin", by the Anarchist Federation, is a brief pamplet on the writings of Mikhail Bakunin. A contemporary of Marx - apparently the two agreed about the problems of capitalism but clashed over how to address them. Bakunin inspired Kropotkin (see above in the the thread). Adding to my collection of late 19th-century revolutionary thinkers.

Finished "Russia in Flames" by Laura Engelstein. A history of the Russian civil war. TL;DR? It was brutal.

Currently reading "Building Soil" by Elizabeth Murphy. The principles of building health.


Just finished Jung Chang's "Empress Dowager Cixi". I've never absorbed much Chinese before and this was a pleasure. This gives me a jumping off point, either to go back to the Ching dynasty, or forward, to the revolution.

"Nature's Best Hope" is superb. The author advocates that we grow native species in our yards (and minimize our grass lawns) to provide food for the insect and bird populations we love.

So many of Philip K. Dick's stories are about being trapped and struggling (usually failing) to escape.

Murray Bookchin's "Ecology of Freedom" is supposed to be his magnum opus, I'm just hoping that one of these anarchists (Bookchin, Kropotkin, Bakunin) will eventually tell me what the ideal society actually looks like.

"Parable of the Talents" by Octavia Butler

I've read that a lot of great figures in history had trouble connecting with their children. That part of the story rings true. The Trump-Jarrett parallel was eerie considering this story was written decades ago.

In "An Indigenous Peoples' History of the United States" by Roxanne Dunbar Ortiz recounts a colonialist and imperialist history U.S. Americans are not taught in school. Changing things for the better requires one to first understand what is and has been, and this book is a great instrument to educate oneself.

"Environmental Monitoring with " Emily Gertz and Patrick Di Justo

I don't have Arduino, but I've got a bread board and my work has me focusing on tech for the environment. Let's do this!

I'm already in love with "Make: Tools - How They Work and How to Use Them" by Charles Platt

It's essentially a collection of very simple "how to" guides. It feels like a written version of what YouTube tutorials have evolved into, if that makes sense.

Also read "Future home of the Living God" by Louise Eldrich.

Current read is "Glass and Gardens Summers"

The editor, Sarena Ulibarri, introduces the book by explaining how she selected the stories for the anthology. The stories she selected didn't need to be about or to be , "but I tried to choose stories that depict adaptation and compromise rather than destruction and conquest, stories that value empathy and cooperation over greed and competition."

This one is for work - "Cross-Cultural " by Senongo Akpem.

A great tidbit: "Culture has a huge, yet often overlooked, effect on what we consider aesthetically pleasing. It's common for Western designers to point to concepts like rational type systems, clean lines, an absence of decoration, and mathetmatical layout grids as universally 'good' design without realizing that most of those principles originated in the century-old movement."

Finished John Green's "The Anthropocene Reviewed". Really good! Green speaks simply but the words strike hard.

I'm thumbing through a (1903!) volume of Edgar Allen Poe's poems and stories and... I was unaware of this particular facet of Poe's life.

"¡Ya Basta! Ten Years of the Zapatista Uprising, Writings of Subcomandante Insurgente Marcos"

...because eventually I need to read about the

"Doughnut Economics" by Kate Raworth

Book argues that we think of economics wrong. We shouldn't be trying to maximize growth, we should try to improve the minimum standard of living.

"You never change things by fighting the existing reality. To change something, build a new model that makes the existing model obsolete."
- Buckminster Fuller

Reminds me of that Thomas Kuhn theory of how scientific revolutions happen.

"As the visual literacy expert Lynelle Burmark explains, 'unless our words, concepts and ideas are hooked onto an image, they will go in one ear, sail through the brain, and go out of the other ear. Words are processed by our short-term memory where we can only retain about seven bits of information.... images, on the other hand, go directly into long-term memory where they are indelibly etched."

"When Adam Smith published 'The Wealth of Nations' in 1776, there were fewer than one billion people alive, and in dollar terms, size of the global economy was three hundred times smaller than it is today. When Paul Samuelson published '' in 1948, there were not yet three billion people on earth, and the global economy was still ten times smaller than it is today."

"In the twenty-first century, we have left behind the era of the 'Empty World' when the flow of energy and matter through the global with small of relation to the capacity of nature's sources and sinks. We live now, says Daly, in 'Full World', with an economy that exceeds Earth's regenerative and absorptive capacity by over-harvesting sources such as fish and forests, and overfilling sinks such as the atmosphere and oceans."

"'As reach into spheres of life traditionally governed by nonmarket norms, the notion that markets don't touch or taint the good sticks change becomes increasingly implausible,' warns Sandel. 'Markets are not mere mechanisms; they embody certain values. And sometimes, market values crowd out nonmarket norms worth caring about.'"

I continue to feel deeply uncomfortable with the interest I see in finding market values for priceless public goods, like air. A functioning biosphere.

"Merely mentioning roles can crowd out our intrinsic motivation. One online survey asked participants to imagine themselves as one among four households facing a water shortage due to a dropped affecting their shared well. Crucially, the survey described the whole scenario in terms of 'consumers' to one half of the participants, and in terms of 'individuals' to the other half. What difference did that single word make?"

"Those labeled 'consumers' reported feeling less personal responsibility to take action unless trust in others to do the same then did those referred to as 'individuals'. Simply thinking like a consumer, it seems, triggers self regarding behavior and divides rather than unites groups were facing a common scarcity."

"Likewise, as part of a forest conservation scheme in Chiapas, Mexico, many farmers are compensated in cash for refraining from cutting their trees, hunting, poaching or expanding their herd of cattle. The more years that they participate in the scheme, however, the more of their stated motivation to conserve the forest becomes financial rather than intrinsic and their readiness for future conservation efforts depends increasingly upon the promise of future payouts."

"In other parts of Chiapas, however, where the forest is managed through community planning and projects, it initially takes longer to generate farmers engagement, but the social capital that they build is far greater and their motivation remain centered on the inherited benefits of long-term conservation. Bringing money into the mix, it seems, can significantly alter our regard for the living world."

"In communities that are low on income but high on social capital, activating norms can have far reaching effects, as researchers in Uganda discovered when they set out to improve rural health care simply by creating a renewed sense of social contract. In 50 districts with poorly performing clinics, they brought local community members together with health center staff to assess current practices and draw up their own agreement setting out the standards that the community expected."

"Each community established a system for monitoring its own local clinic, such as staff duty rosters, suggestion boxes, and numbered waiting room tickets, then posted the monthly results on a public notice board."

"One year on, the quality and quantity of primary health care provided had dramatically improved: 20% More patients were being seen and with shorter waiting times; absenteeism among doctors and nurses had plummeted; and –most strikingly– 33% fewer children under the age of five were dying in those communities. All of this was achieved without fees, fines or a bigger budget. But thanks to the expectations of a social contract, backed up with public accountability."


@Argus are these quotes from doughnut economics? Really interesting, makes me want to read it.

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@Flarnie Yes indeed! And I recommend it. I'm new to economics thinking and I find it very compelling and accessible.

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