Daily Archives: August 18, 2013

The Five Stages of Collapse: Survivors’ Toolkit: Dmitry Orlov


Review, Charlie Smith, Straight.com July 1, 2013
Five Stages of Collapse is a highly entertaining and enlightening examination of the entrails of what happens when societies are driven into the abyss by greedy, hard-hearted elites and corrupt and incompetent politicians.
And if Orlov turns out to be correct, this book just might end up saving your life by revealing steps you can take to prepare for the worst.

Review, Carolyn Baker, Speaking Truth to Power April 7,2013

I am a huge fan of Dmitry’s work, and I must concur with Richard Heinberg who says, “Even if I believed collapse were impossible I’d still read everything Dmitry Orlov writes: he’s that entertaining.” Incisive articulation of reality tempered with irrepressible humor and sarcasm define his writing style and not only compel us to stay with what some describe as a “dark Russian perspective,” but reveal a man who has found a way to live with what is so and navigate it with buoyant humanity.

The Five Stages of Collapse is nothing less than a definitive textbook for a hypothetical course entitled “The Collapse Of Industrial Civilization 101” or perhaps a bible of sorts for an imaginary “Institute of Collapse Studies.” While to my knowledge no such courses or organizations presently exist, this book would be an essential aspect of any such entity’s credibility.

Review, Michael C. Ruppert, April 18, 2013

The writing of this book was a rotten job, but it was absolutely necessary. If someone had to do it, I am very glad that it was Dmitry Orlov. Without his wit, alacrity and experience, the task of beating the horse of the Cartesian approach to understanding our dying world to death would have resulted in something unbearably maddening, dry and uninspiring. In this book he sneaks some LOLROF side-splitters in when you least expect them. One gathers from Orlov’s painstaking efforts, the futility of looking to outdated constructs and philosophies for understanding and relief from a crisis that demands complete innovation and inspiration.

Reading closely, one sees Orlov carefully planting seeds of reconciliation with our planet and each other throughout—as a fundamental baseline. He arrives at places outside the box of the current meme by using methodologies and analyses that are sacramental within the meme. That’s an achievement. Perhaps in his next book he will stand on that ground more forcefully and tell us what he sees. We don’t need to understand collapse right now as much as we need to survive it. And that is where Dmitry Orlov rises through the rubble and gives us magnificent gems like this: “At the rock bottom of human survival, there is no individual and there is no state; there is only the family, or, if there isn’t, there is something that’s not quite human—or there is nothing at all.”

Profound insight combined with wry humor is such an incendiary weapon I am tempted to call The Five Stages of Collapse an “Orlov Cocktail.” His delivery of hard truths laced with irony saturates us in seldom reported but extremely relevant facts about the world. He is one of the best writers on the scene today, working at the top of his game. There is more to enjoy in this book with every page you turn, and in very uncertain times, Orlov’s advice is, at its core, kind-spirited and extraordinarily helpful.
—Albert Bates, author, The Biochar Solution

Even if I believed collapse were impossible I’d still read everything Dmitry Orlov writes: he’s that entertaining. Unfortunately, however, collapse of some sort or other, of some degree or another, is almost guaranteed. Orlov does us all a great service by teasing apart the kinds and degrees of collapse so that we can prepare for what is likely and “dig in our heels” to prevent what is unsurvivable.
—Richard Heinberg, Senior Fellow, Post Carbon Institute, Author, The End of Growth

From the Back Cover

A Do-It-Yourself Guide to Financial, Commercial,Political, Social and Cultural Collapse

…one of the best writers on the scene today, working at the top of his game. There is more to enjoy in this book with every page you turn, and in very uncertain times, Orlov’s advice is, at its core, kind-spirited and extraordinarily helpful. Albert Bates, author, The Biochar Solution

When thinking about political paralysis, looming resource shortages and a rapidly changing climate, many of us can do no better than imagine a future that is just less of the same. But it is during such periods of profound disruption that sweeping cultural change becomes inevitable. In The Five Stages of Collapse, Dmitry Orlov posits a taxonomy of collapse, suggesting that if the first three stages (financial, commercial and political) are met with the appropriate personal and social transformations, then the worst consequences of social and cultural collapse can be avoided.

Drawing on a detailed examination of both pre- and post-collapse societies, The Five Stages of Collapse provides a unique perspective on the typical characteristics of highly resilient communities. Both successful and unsuccessful adaptations are explored in the areas of finance, commerce, self-governance, social organization and culture. Case studies provide a wealth of specifics for each stage of collapse, focusing on the Icelanders, the Russian Mafia, the Pashtuns of Central Asia, the Roma of nowhere in particular and the Ik of East Africa.

The Five Stages of Collapse provides a wealth of practical information and a long list of to-do items for those who wish to survive each stage with their health, sanity, friendships, family relationships and sense of humor intact. Shot through with Orlov’s trademark dark humor, this is an invaluable toolkit for crafting workable post-collapse solutions at the scale of the family and the community.

…Orlov does us all a great service by teasing apart the kinds and degrees of collapse so that we can prepare for what is likely and “dig in our heels” to prevent what is unsurvivable. Richard Heinberg, Senior Fellow, Post Carbon Institute, author, The End of Growth

Dmitry Orlov was born in Leningrad and immigrated to the United States in the 1970’s. He is the author of Reinventing Collapse, Hold Your Applause! and Absolutely Positive, and publishes weekly at the phenomenally popular blog http://ClubOrlov.com.

Global Climate Change http://courses.dce.harvard.edu/~envre130
Environmental Justice http://courses.dce.harvard.edu/~envre145
Environment Ethics http://courses.dce.harvard.edu/~envre120
Food-Matters http://Food-Matters.TV

Farmacology: What Innovative Family Farming Can Teach Us About Health and Healing: Daphne Miller


What can good farming teach us about nurturing ourselves?

Family physician Daphne Miller long suspected that farming and medicine were intimately linked. Increasingly disillusioned by mainstream medicine’s mechanistic approach to healing and fascinated by the farming revolution that is changing the way we think about our relationship to the earth, Miller left her medical office and traveled to seven innovative family farms around the country, on a quest to discover the hidden connections between how we care for our bodies and how we grow our food. Farmacology, the remarkable book that emerged from her travels, offers us a compelling new vision for sustainable health and healing—and a wealth of farm-to-body lessons with immense value in our daily lives.

Miller begins her journey with a pilgrimage to the Kentucky homestead of renowned author and farming visionary Wendell Berry. Over the course of the following year, she travels to a biodynamic farm in Washington state, a ranch in the Ozarks, two chicken farms in Arkansas, a winery in California, a community garden in the Bronx, and finally an aromatic herb farm back in Washington. While learning from forward-thinking farmers, Miller explores such compelling questions as:

  • What can rejuvenating depleted soil teach us about rejuvenating ourselves?
  • How can a grazing system on a ranch offer valuable insights into raising resilient children?
  • What can two laying-hen farms teach us about stress management?
  • How do vineyard pest-management strategies reveal a radically new approach to cancer care?
  • What are the unexpected ways that urban agriculture can transform the health of a community?
  • How can an aromatic herb farm unlock the secret to sustainable beauty?

Environmental Justice http://courses.dce.harvard.edu/~envre145
Environment Ethics http://courses.dce.harvard.edu/~envre120
Food-Matters http://Food-Matters.TV

About – Greening UM – The University Of Montana



Greening UM is a coalition representing all UM sustainability initiatives. It represents every eco-minded initiative on campus from those in the classroom to those in the heating plant. Specifically, this website is maintained and overseen by the Sustainable Campus Committee and the Office of Sustainability. We welcome comments and feedback and encourage all members of the UM community to be a part of Greening UM.

Global Climate Change http://courses.dce.harvard.edu/~envre130
Environmental Justice http://courses.dce.harvard.edu/~envre145
Environment Ethics http://courses.dce.harvard.edu/~envre120
Food-Matters http://Food-Matters.TV

Is Divesting Activism?

Sunday, 18 August 2013 00:00 By Robert A G Monks, Truthout | Op-Ed

(Image: Corporate hand via Shutterstock)
Investment funds exist for every type of shareholder. So-called socially responsible funds screen out investments in tobacco companies, weapons manufacturers, nuclear energy and a host of other types of corporations. You can avoid investing in issues or products that you don’t believe in just as you might avoid consuming them. And if you’re individually invested in a company that you disagree with, you can sell your shares or divest.

Sure, if you hold enough shares or got enough big funds together and divested, it would impact a company. But the problem with this option is that someone who doesn’t care about the issues will buy those stocks and no attempt at change will be made. The essence of shareholder activism is trying to change the actions or culture of a company in which you hold shares. Corporations have so much power and so much money that government oversight doesn’t work. Someone needs to hold companies accountable, and that someone is the shareholder. There is a right and a responsibility inherent in holding corporate shares: a right to be involved in something you invested in and a responsibility to see that your investment does no harm.

Divestment campaigns, like boycotts, are what we think of first when we hear of corporate misdeeds. Don’t put your money into something that is harming people, the Earth, etc. Anti-apartheid divestment efforts began in the 1960s and picked up momentum in the 1980s. Now, there are student movements forming to encourage divestment from fossil fuel companies. Nelson Mandela once told me that while efforts like this were invaluable in bringing down apartheid, he also appreciated the companies who didn’t leave South Africa because people needed the jobs. It’s a Catch-22: to walk away or to stay and try to change things.

….(read more).

Global Climate Change http://courses.dce.harvard.edu/~envre130
Environmental Justice http://courses.dce.harvard.edu/~envre145
Environment Ethics http://courses.dce.harvard.edu/~envre120

Noam Chomsky (1983) “The Fateful Triangle” Lost Interview

The Chomsky Videos

Published on Jul 19, 2013

“The Fateful Triangle: The United States, Israel and the Palestinians” is a 1983 book by Noam Chomsky about the relationship between America, Israel and the Arab Palestinians. Chomsky examines the origins of this relationship and its meaningful consequences for the Palestinians and other Arabs. The book is mainly concentrated on the 1982 Lebanon war and the “pro-Zionist” bias of most American media and intellectuals, as Chomsky puts it.

Environmental Justice http://courses.dce.harvard.edu/~envre145
Environment Ethics http://courses.dce.harvard.edu/~envre120

How Is the Media Biased About Politics? Noam Chomsky on Journalism and Reporting (1988)

The Film Archives

Published on Jul 10, 2013

Media bias is studied at schools of journalism, university departments (including Media studies, Cultural studies and Peace studies) and by independent watchdog groups from various parts of the political spectrum. In the United States, many of these studies focus on issues of a conservative/liberal balance in the media. Other focuses include international differences in reporting, as well as bias in reporting of particular issues such as economic class or environmental interests.

One high profile academic survey of American journalists is The Media Elite. The survey found that most journalists were liberal Democratic voters.[citation needed]

Martin Harrison’s TV News: Whose Bias? (1985) criticized the methodology of the Glasgow Media Group, arguing that the GMG identified bias selectively, via their own preconceptions about what phrases qualify as biased descriptions. For example, the GMG sees the word “idle” to describe striking workers as pejorative, despite the word being used by strikers themselves.[4]

Herman and Chomsky (1988) proposed a propaganda model hypothesizing systematic biases of U.S. media from structural economic causes. They hypothesize media ownership by corporations, funding from advertising, the use of official sources, efforts to discredit independent media (“flak”), and “anti-communist” ideology as the filters that bias news in favor of U.S. corporate interests.

Many of the positions in the preceding study are supported by a 2002 study by Jim A. Kuypers: Press Bias and Politics: How the Media Frame Controversial Issues. In this study of 116 mainstream US papers (including The New York Times, the Washington Post, Los Angeles Times, and the San Francisco Chronicle), Kuypers found that the mainstream print press in America operate within a narrow range of liberal beliefs. Those who expressed points of view further to the left were generally ignored, whereas those who expressed moderate or conservative points of view were often actively denigrated or labeled as holding a minority point of view. In short, if a political leader, regardless of party, spoke within the press-supported range of acceptable discourse, he or she would receive positive press coverage. If a politician, again regardless of party, were to speak outside of this range, he or she would receive negative press or be ignored. Kuypers also found that the liberal points of view expressed in editorial and opinion pages were found in hard news coverage of the same issues. Although focusing primarily on the issues of race and homosexuality, Kuypers found that the press injected opinion into its news coverage of other issues such as welfare reform, environmental protection, and gun control; in all cases favoring a liberal point of view.[5]

Studies reporting perceptions of liberal bias in the media are not limited to studies of print media. A joint study by the Joan Shorenstein Center on Press, Politics and Public Policy at Harvard University and the Project for Excellence in Journalism found that people see liberal media bias in television news media such as CNN.[6] Although both CNN and Fox were perceived in the study as being left of center, CNN was perceived as being more liberal than Fox. Moreover, the study’s findings concerning CNN’s perceived liberal bias are echoed in other studies.[7] There is also a growing economics literature on mass media bias, both on the theoretical and the empirical side. On the theoretical side the focus is on understanding to what extent the political positioning of mass media outlets is mainly driven by demand or supply factors. This literature is surveyed by Andrea Prat of the London School of Economics and David Stromberg of Stockholm University.[8]

According to Dan Sutter of the University of Oklahoma, a systematic liberal bias in the U.S. media could depend on the fact that owners and/or journalists typically lean to the left.[9]

Along the same lines, David Baron of Stanford GSB presents a game-theoretic model of mass media behaviour in which, given that the pool of journalists systematically leans towards the left or the right, mass media outlets maximise their profits by providing content that is biased in the same direction.[10] They can do so, because it is cheaper to hire journalists that write stories which are consistent with their political position. A concurrent theory would be that supply and demand would cause media to attain a neutral balance because consumers would of course gravitate towards the media they agreed with. This argument fails in considering the imbalance in self-reported political allegiances by journalists themselves, that distort any market analogy as regards offer: (…) Indeed, in 1982, 85 percent of Columbia Graduate School of Journalism students identified themselves as liberal, versus 11 percent conservative” (Lichter, Rothman, and Lichter 1986: 48), quoted in Sutter, 2001.

Environmental Justice http://courses.dce.harvard.edu/~envre145
Environment Ethics http://courses.dce.harvard.edu/~envre120

Noam Chomsky: The History and Hypocrisy of the War on Terror


Published on Jun 14, 2013

Noam Chomsky speaking at the 15th anniversary celebration of the establishment of the Fairness and Accuracy In Reporting (FAIR) cooperative. The talk was given at the Town Hall Auditorium in New York on 1/22/2002, several months after the 911 attack on the World Trade Center.

There were several speakers at this event but this video has been edited to contain only Noam Chomsky’s presentation, as well as the audience question and answer session that followed. Editing and restoration by Chant Media.

Environmental Justice http://courses.dce.harvard.edu/~envre145
Environment Ethics http://courses.dce.harvard.edu/~envre120