Daily Archives: February 25, 2017

America by Design: Science, Technology, and the Rise of Corporate Capitalism: David F. Noble

Hailed a “significant contribution” by The New York Times, David Noble’s book America by Design describes the factors that have shaped the history of scientific technology in the United States.

Since the beginning, technology and industry have been undeniably intertwined, and Noble demonstrates how corporate capitalism has not only become the driving force behind the development of technology in this country but also how scientific research—particularly within universities—has been dominated by the corporations who fund it, who go so far as to influence the education of the engineers that will one day create the technology to be used for capitalist gain.

Noble reveals that technology, often thought to be an independent science, has always been a means to an end for the men pulling the strings of Corporate America—and it was these men that laid down the plans for the design of the modern nation today.

See also:

The Religion of Technology: The Divinity of Man and the Spirit of Invention: David F. Noble

https://www.amazon.com/Religion-Technology-Divinity-Spirit-Invention/dp/0140279164/ref=ecoethicsA/
Are religion and science really at war with one another? Not according to David F. Noble, who argues that the flourishing of both religion and technology today is nothing new but rather the continuation of a 1,000-year-old Western tradition.

The Religion of Technology demonstrates that modern man’s enchantment with things technological was inspired by and grounded in religious expectations and the quest for transcendence and salvation. The two early impulses behind the urge to advance in science, he claims, are the conviction that apocalypse is imminent, and the belief that increasing human knowledge helps recover what was lost in Eden. Noble traces the history of these ideas by examining the imaginings of monks, explorers, magi, scientists, Freemasons, and engineers, from Sir Isaac Newton to Joseph Priestley to Wernher von Braun.

Noble suggests that the relationship between religion and technology has perhaps outlived its usefulness. Whereas it once aimed to promote human well-being, it has ultimately become a threat to our survival. Thus, with The Religion of Technology, Noble aims to redirect our efforts toward more worldly and humane ends.

Walking on Water: Reading, Writing and Revolution: Derrick Jensen

https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/1931498784/ref=ecoethicsA/

Remember the days of longing for the hands on the classroom clock to move faster? Most of us would say we love to learn, but we hated school. Why is that? What happens to creativity and individuality as we pass through the educational system?

Walking on Water is a startling and provocative look at teaching, writing, creativity, and life by a writer increasingly recognized for his passionate and articulate critique of modern civilization. This time Derrick Jensen brings us into his classroom–whether college or maximum security prison–where he teaches writing. He reveals how schools perpetuate the great illusion that happiness lies outside of ourselves and that learning to please and submit to those in power makes us into lifelong clock-watchers. As a writing teacher Jensen guides his students out of the confines of traditional education to find their own voices, freedom, and creativity.

Jensen’s great gift as a teacher and writer is to bring us fully alive at the same moment he is making us confront our losses and count our defeats. It is at the center of Walking on Water, a book that is not only a hard-hitting and sometimes scathing critique of our current educational system and not only a hands-on method for learning how to write, but, like Julia Cameron’s The Artist’s Way, a lesson on how to connect to the core of our creative selves, to the miracle of waking up and arriving breathless (but with dry feet) on the far shore.

As the World Burns: 50 Simple Things You Can Do to Stay in Denial#A Graphic Novel: Derrick Jensen, Stephanie McMillan

https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/1583227776/ref=ecoethicsA/
Two of America’s most talented activists team up to deliver a bold and hilarious satire of modern environmental policy in this fully illustrated graphic novel. The U.S. government gives robot machines from space permission to eat the earth in exchange for bricks of gold. A one-eyed bunny rescues his friends from a corporate animal-testing laboratory. And two little girls figure out the secret to saving the world from both of its enemies (and it isn’t by using energy-efficient light bulbs or biodiesel fuel). As the World Burns will inspire you to do whatever it takes to stop ecocide before it’s too late.

Deep Green Resistance: Strategy to Save the Planet: Derrick Jensen, Aric McBay, Lierre Keith

https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/1583229299/ref=ecoethicsA/
For years, Derrick Jensen has asked his audiences, “Do you think this culture will undergo a voluntary transformation to a sane and sustainable way of life?” No one ever says yes.
Deep Green Resistance starts where the environmental movement leaves off: industrial civilization is incompatible with life. Technology can’t fix it, and shopping—no matter how green—won’t stop it. To save this planet, we need a serious resistance movement that can bring down the industrial economy.

Deep Green Resistance evaluates strategic options for resistance, from nonviolence to guerrilla warfare, and the conditions required for those options to be successful. It provides an exploration of organizational structures, recruitment, security, and target selection for both aboveground and underground action. Deep Green Resistance also discusses a culture of resistance and the crucial support role that it can play.

Deep Green Resistance is a plan of action for anyone determined to fight for this planet—and win.

Deep Green Resistance: Strategy to Save the Planet: Derrick Jensen, Aric McBay, Lierre Keith

https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/1583229299/ref=ecoethicsA/
At once a beautifully poetic memoir and an exploration of the various ways we live in the world, A Language Older Than Words explains violence as a pathology that touches every aspect of our lives and indeed affects all aspects of life on Earth. This chronicle of a young man’s drive to transcend domestic abuse offers a challenging look at our worldwide sense of community and how we can make things better.

Where to find what’s disappeared online, and a whole lot more: the Internet Archive | Public Radio International

Brewster Kahle, founder of the Internet Archive in San Francisco,  Credit:Mary Kay Magistad

In a gleaming white former church with Greek-style pillars, under the shade of cypress trees in a quiet neighborhood of San Francisco, an effort to preserve much of what’s online, and to scan books, and save video streams from around the world, is now underway.

Go in the front entrance, and you may see volunteers unloading books, while others sit at scanning machines, digitizing the books so they can be made available online. Go into the old church itself, and you’ll see a bank of servers blinking green in the back, while soft light streams in from the stained glass dome, onto wooden pews below, and a little army of statues of people — one for each of those who have worked here for at least three years.

Internet Archive staff, represented as statues, in its headquarters in a former church in San Francisco

Credit: Mary Kay Magistad

This is the Internet Archive, the brainchild of Brewster Kahle, an MIT-educated computer engineer, internet entrepreneur and digital librarian. Since the Internet Archive started in 1996, its staff — now, about 140 people — have digitized almost 3 million books, and are aiming for 10 million.

They’ve saved video streams from major television networks around the world. And they’ve saved multiple versions of websites and webpages that might otherwise have disappeared, available to anyone who goes to archive.org, by using the “Wayback Machine.” About five million people use it every day, Kahle says.

…(read more).