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Live simply, so others may simply live

Have you ever seen that bumper sticker?

  • No, I've never seen it

    Votes: 8 53.3%
  • I spat on that 72 Volvo

    Votes: 1 6.7%
  • I'm American

    Votes: 2 13.3%
  • I don't live in a 'shithole' country

    Votes: 0 0.0%
  • I lkind of like that notion

    Votes: 4 26.7%
  • I'm right-libertarian, what I do affects no one

    Votes: 0 0.0%

  • Total voters
    15

Antiwar

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Have you ever seen that bumper sticker?
 

Peacenik

We Live In Societies
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It is smart thinking.
 

Questerr

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What does that even mean?
 

Mithrae

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What does that even mean?
Over-consumption is the #1 problem facing humanity in the 21st and late 20th centuries. More for me ultimately means less for someone else, and while the planet is big enough to accommodate ten billion people's needs, it'll never satisfy even one billion people's greed. Unfortunately our economic model of capitalism is predicated on the notion of infinite growth on a finite planet, actively incentivizing businesses to utilize a multi-trillion dollar marketing industry to generate artificial desires, an entire culture of mindless consumerism (most grotesquely displayed in the Black Friday/Christmas period). Ideas like minimalism, "live simply so others may simply live" and - as a principle of good governance - "public luxury and private sufficiency" are modern efforts to stem that tide, though the principles go back at least as far as the 1st century. For example (in a rather extreme form):

Luke 3:10 And the crowds asked him, “What then should we do?” 11 In reply he said to them, “Whoever has two coats must share with anyone who has none; and whoever has food must do likewise.”

Luke 12:22 He said to his disciples, “Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat, or about your body, what you will wear. 23 For life is more than food, and the body more than clothing. 24 Consider the ravens: they neither sow nor reap, they have neither storehouse nor barn, and yet God feeds them. Of how much more value are you than the birds! 25 And can any of you by worrying add a single hour to your span of life? 26 If then you are not able to do so small a thing as that, why do you worry about the rest? 27 Consider the lilies, how they grow: they neither toil nor spin; yet I tell you, even Solomon in all his glory was not clothed like one of these. 28 But if God so clothes the grass of the field, which is alive today and tomorrow is thrown into the oven, how much more will he clothe you—you of little faith! 29 And do not keep striving for what you are to eat and what you are to drink, and do not keep worrying. 30 For it is the nations of the world that strive after all these things, and your Father knows that you need them. 31 Instead, strive for his kingdom, and these things will be given to you as well. 32 Do not be afraid, little flock, for it is your Father’s good pleasure to give you the kingdom. 33 Sell your possessions, and give alms. Make purses for yourselves that do not wear out, an unfailing treasure in heaven, where no thief comes near and no moth destroys.
 

Questerr

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Over-consumption is the #1 problem facing humanity in the 21st and late 20th centuries. More for me ultimately means less for someone else, and while the planet is big enough to accommodate ten billion people's needs, it'll never satisfy even one billion people's greed. Unfortunately our economic model of capitalism is predicated on the notion of infinite growth on a finite planet, actively incentivizing businesses to utilize a multi-trillion dollar marketing industry to generate artificial desires, an entire culture of mindless consumerism (most grotesquely displayed in the Black Friday/Christmas period). Ideas like minimalism, "live simply so others may simply live" and - as a principle of good governance - "public luxury and private sufficiency" are modern efforts to stem that tide, though the principles go back at least as far as the 1st century. For example (in a rather extreme form):

Overconsumption isn’t a thing. There’s plenty of resources to go around. The issue is with capitalist waste and artificial scarcity.
 

Mithrae

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Overconsumption isn’t a thing. There’s plenty of resources to go around. The issue is with capitalist waste and artificial scarcity.
Tell that to the climate scientists :rolleyes:
 

Mithrae

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They are very aware of it. Why do you think they are vehemently opposed to neoliberal capitalism?
Because it promotes overconsumption: The biggest causes of anthropogenic climate change are the energy and transport sectors required for all production and sale of material goods, and excessive consumption of meat (especially beef) and the deforestation which it drives.
 

Razoo

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Have you ever seen that bumper sticker?

Another Mother for Peace logo.

War is not healthy for most life such as all humans, plants and wildlife
 

Questerr

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Because it promotes overconsumption: The biggest causes of anthropogenic climate change are the energy and transport sectors required for all production and sale of material goods, and excessive consumption of meat (especially beef) and the deforestation which it drives.

And capitalist inefficiency results in huge amounts of waste.

For instance, if we focused on planned communities with pre-planned mass transportation systems, we’d use a lot less energy in them.
 

Mithrae

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And capitalist inefficiency results in huge amounts of waste.

For instance, if we focused on planned communities with pre-planned mass transportation systems, we’d use a lot less energy in them.
If everyone in a socialist utopia dined on steak for every meal in their private mansion and yacht, they'd be screwing over future generations and the world's poorest just as much as in a scenario of capitalist overconsumption. The artificially enhanced consumerist culture which capitalism actively encourages is making the problem that much worse - and waste of any kind even moreso - but regardless of what model you try to use the planet simply isn't big enough to satisfy all the dreams of even one billion people: And with a global population projected to reach ten billion, even the 'modest' middle-class lifestyles of average Australians and Americans in our saturated consumerist societies are ridiculously extravagant.
 

Ren

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Jay59

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Live and let live is the common phrasing.

It's not exactly deep.
 

poppopfox

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Overconsumption isn’t a thing.
Gluttony, greed and unchecked desires are.
There’s plenty of resources to go around. The issue is with capitalist waste and artificial scarcity.
We thought there were plenty of buffalo to go around, but that wasn't true. Plenty of whales and other critters once upon a time in the past as well.

The issue is with us. ☹️
 

aociswundumho

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Over-consumption is the #1 problem facing humanity in the 21st and late 20th centuries. More for me ultimately means less for someone else, and while the planet is big enough to accommodate ten billion people's needs, it'll never satisfy even one billion people's greed.

I'd like to hear how you've reduced your own personal consumption in order to provide more for other people.

Unfortunately our economic model of capitalism is predicated on the notion of infinite growth on a finite planet,

This is the same mistake Thomas Malthus made:

Malthusianism is the idea that population growth is potentially exponential while the growth of the food supply or other resources is linear, which eventually reduces living standards to the point of triggering a population die off.


He was wrong of course, just like you are.
 

Mithrae

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I'd like to hear how you've reduced your own personal consumption in order to provide more for other people.
A few fairly simple pointers, most of which could be readily adopted by most folk, would be
> Conserve space by preferencing apartment blocks, townhouses or even just smaller houses/yards over sprawling suburban mini-mansions. In general that'll reduce energy consumption for heating/cooling, reduce transport/fossil fuel usage through more compact cities, and hopefully reduce almost all material consumption through the tendency to clutter (rather than artificial need to 'fill') more reasonably-sized living spaces.
> Reduce meat consumption, especially seafood and beef, for their devastating environmental impacts and the effect on global food prices of such wildly inefficient use of limited agricultural land.
> Reduce fuel consumption by using public transport, biking or walking. This also saves money and is healthier both for you and for everyone's air quality. In well designed cities pretty much no-one should need a personal car; as things stand some people (particularly those with small children) may need one, in which case fuel efficient/electric vehicles can be prioritized and still used sparingly/shared among families. (In terms of government policy, registration fees should be based on miles traveled as well as vehicle type to remove the perverse incentive of "I'm paying for it so may as well get the most out of it.")
> Reduce energy consumption by using fans or sweaters instead of air conditioning where possible, using fewer and more energy efficient appliances and turning things off when not in use.
> Replace things only when needed, not just because a company released an 'improved' model. Avoid brands which don't last.
> Obviously, reduce, reuse and recycle in general. Check out local thrift shops, swap meets etc.
> Boycott the idiot tradition of giving material 'gifts,' especially store-bought, for birthdays, Christmas etc. Give your presence instead of presents, or for those truly suckered into the notion that how much you care is measured by what you give, why not truly embrace that notion and just give cash?
> Give more to international aid/development charities like Oxfam, Red Cross, World Vision etc. For most of my 20s I was devoting more of my income to a single luxury for myself (alcohol) than to help my fellow human beings in desperate need around the world. What kind of person does that? Probably most of us in one way or another... but if anything that makes it all the worse.

This is the same mistake Thomas Malthus made:
Sorry, are you pretending that our planet is not finite? Some resources are renewable (although many of those, most devastatingly marine life, are being depleted at wildly unsustainable rates), for others the efficiency of usage can be improved (eg. skyscrapers allowing for more compact cities, fertilizers allowing greater crop yields) and for some resources the quantity available on the planet's surface is far more than we'll ever use (eg. coal, which would last almost three millennia at current usage rates even if we weren't well on the way to cooking the planet). None of that changes the fact that consumption at the scale of current human civilization is devastating or depleting even some seemingly inexhaustible resources.


Of course those are only doom and gloom facts if they are ignored; if we decide that neoliberal dogma is a better way of organizing our societies than observational science and actively adapting our behaviour to avert the likely problems. Human civilizations for nigh on ten thousand years have known that their worlds and their access to resources were limited. They haven't always adapted appropriately, and sometimes have been devastated by changing climates or circumstances in spite of their best efforts: But it's only been in the past century or two that we've seen a widespread acceptance of this remarkable fantasy that our planet isn't finite, that there aren't any limits to how much we can use and consume. It's really quite mind-boggling that this delusion has spread so much during the period that both our scientific understanding of those limits and our consumption of those resources have increased exponentially; a consequence perhaps of the dual factors of a) endless advertising and mind-numbing saturation of capitalist consumerist culture and b) the fact that we in wealthy countries don't have to deal with daily scarcity for the most part, living instead in our comfortable bubbles where it really does seem like everything is limitless for those with the money to buy it.
 
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