Have we been ‘groomed’ ?

In a typical abusive relationship the abuser woos his victim with charm. He (whilst recognising that an abuser is not necessarily male) seems to take care of his victim; assisting, providing for and becoming such a source of support that the victim turns their back on their other support networks, family and friends, partly ‘encouraged’ by the abuser who points out all of the supporters’ failings and shortcomings, or undermines them.

Then when the victim is totally dependent on the abuser and with no-one there for back up, the abuser shows his true character. He has nothing to lose now, he can force his victim to do whatever he likes because there is nowhere else for them to turn. The victim is either so confused and bewildered that they stay in the situation hoping that the charming person will return and it’s all just a blip, or else they have so alienated any support that there is nowhere else to turn, or further still they are so absolutely ashamed that they feel they deserve it!

After the second world war the UK was fairly self sufficient. People had rallied together and supported each other, people grew their own food and raised their own livestock, nursed and cared for the sick or infirm, developed ways of trading and exchanging with each other outside of the usual routes.

Then the government declared that we would have a welfare state, no need to worry about any of your problems, the government will take care of you… And the people believed them. How wonderful it was to have a national health system, how fantastic that women were ‘freed’ to go out of the home and into the workplace, how lovely that the misfortunate could be cared for by the state if they lost their job or became too sick to work, now we didn’t have to worry about each other, the state would take care of it all….

And now, when we’ve all become totally dependent and we’ve forgotten how to take care of each other and the very fabric of our communities have been torn apart, now the abuser has decided that he no longer cares about us. The misfortunate have become the undeserving, the sick must stand in a long line, be experimented upon and be ridiculed for taking responsibility for their own wellbeing – they must be nursed and ‘treated’ by ‘professionals’ not their families, friends, neighbours and community, and it would seem that the days of free healthcare are numbered. Many women long to be able to take care of their home and their children, but low pay and fees for existence are so high that they must leave their children to be looked after by ‘professionals’ whilst they go out to ‘earn a living’. Everything seems to cost us money, everything must be ‘permitted’ or ‘licensed’ and yes we must pay for that. Attempts to be self sufficient are undermined – you need to apply for permission to build that house, keep that livestock, save those seeds, use that water, grow food on that land and so it goes on…

So you may say this is a crazy conspiracy theory and maybe so, it is just a theory, my own observation, but nevertheless things have turned out quite well for those in power and those without power have had their safety-net undermined to a life threatening degree….

New Year plans, Part 2 – Stop feeding the money monster

Most people don’t realise that money isn’t real. It’s worthless, it has no value, it’s backed by nothing, it’s created from nothing. When you borrow money from a bank, it didn’t exist until you agreed to pay it back – with interest!!! If every debt (including national debts) were repaid there would be no money left, in fact there isn’t enough money to do this. That’s what causes inflation, it’s essentially a tax on debt! More money is needed in the system to pay the interest, where else can it come from? Don’t believe me? Please investigate further, here’s some links…

http://www.peakprosperity.com/video/85833/crash-course-chapter-7-money-creation-banks

(this whole course is worth watching btw)

 

 

There’s lots more, a quick google or search of youtube will bring you oodles of information.

And yet our existence, our ‘success’ as a country in measured in this stuff. Our health, our well being, our happiness is not even considered in any measure of success, only how much money is generated within our country. And when you make everything about the money, then everything becomes about the money. If our health suffers, if people can’t acquire basic necessities, like food and shelter, it’s disregarded, sacrificed for ‘the economy’. The economy has become some new twisted religion, no-one really understands it. Some people say they do and tell us that if we worship it and sacrifice everything for it, we will be saved, we will be ‘successful’. This illusion only works whilst we believe in it and I don’t believe anymore…

We’ve been led to believe that there’s scarcity in this world and that we need the government to make sure we don’t fight amongst ourselves for resources. It’s not true. The scarcity only exists because some people laid claim to resources that don’t belong to them, the resources come from nature and shouldn’t be ‘owned’. The reason we have scarcity is because people like the CEO of Nestle say that clean water isn’t a right. He thinks that Nestle can just say ‘that’s our water and you have to pay us for it’ and then restrict access to a resource that’s been freely used by communities for centuries. People have been denied access to land to grow food, because someone decided it was their land. Famine and starvation in many countries is caused by people being denied access to fertile land – it is there, it just isn’t being used to grow food. Lots of land is used to grow commodities, like cocoa, coffee and cotton for export – to feed ‘the economy’. Well what about feeding the people!

It looks like the whole thing is about to crash again, so it may be wise to reduce dependency on the money monster and I have resolved not to feed it any more. So what can I do? What can one person do to make a difference?

It is possible to live without money and one person who did this successfully in this country is Mark Boyle, the Moneyless Man.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mark_Boyle_%28Moneyless_Man%29

http://www.moneylessmanifesto.org/

It’s only really possible if you completely duck out of everyday society though, so it’s not for the fainthearted.

For my part I want to reduce my dependency on it, stop feeding the monster.

Priority 1 – Unfortunately I have debt, so this is my priority at the moment, every spare penny I have will go towards paying off this debt.

At my current rate, I will have cleared my unsecured debt in 2 years.

Priority 2 – spend as little as possible.

This means being satisfied with what I have, repairing, building, swapping and foraging for items I may need. Growing my own food, utilising waste timber or growing my own wood for fuel, making my own toiletries, cleaning products and using herbs and good food to promote good health. I have challenged myself to live on £4000 this year – this doesn’t include debt repayments, work related expenses or money spent directly on my son, such as clubs, education, pocket money, etc but does include feeding, clothing and keeping him. Half of the £4000 is allocated for groceries and power (gas, electric and woodfuel) so if I could be largely self sufficient in these areas I’d need even less!

Priority 3 – keep as little money as possible in the bank.

The more money there is in the bank, the more they can lend and perpetuate the debt cycle. And it’s not safe. You think the banks are there to look after your money? When you make a deposit, you are loaning your money to the bank and you become a creditor. It’s not your money any more, it’s theirs and they can do what they like with it. If they lose it, you get in line with all their other creditors, but you’ll be at the bottom of the list! I leave in enough to cover my direct debits and withdraw what I need to cover day-to-day outgoings. I don’t have enough to ‘save’.

Priority 4 – Spread the word.

I sometimes get despondent about the terrible things that are happening in the world and feel helpless. I think what can I do? I’m just me, I’m just one person. I am indeed one person, and I’m the only person I can change, but I can tell other people and they might want to join me and they might tell others and if enough people ask questions, think about what is happening, want change. Then maybe things will change. I hope so!

 

 

 

New Year, New Plans. Part 1 – Food anarchy!

Well not really all that new! My plans for 2015 are pretty similar to my plans for 2014, but I’m hoping to be a little more focused.

One of my aims is to be more self reliant. One way to be less reliant on the government is to take more control of the food we eat. Agriculture nowadays is largely controlled by giant international corporations whose priority is making as big a profit as possible. And the government works to help them do just that, often penalising smaller farmers and small holders who have to wade through masses of  red tape and who often cannot apply for the generous subsidies offered to large industrial farms. Seed saving and swapping is about to become illegal in the EU! In parts of America it’s not allowed to grow food in your own garden. Most familiar brand names are now owned by just a handful of companies. Traditional British companies such as Cadbury and Baxters are now owned by large American Corporations, even the innocent sounding Innocent Smoothies are now owned by Coca Cola, who are in turn owned by Monsanto. Monsanto are, in my opinion, the biggest threat to food security on the planet, but I digress, now is the time to be positive and take control! I want to concentrate on the solution not the problem. So what am I doing to take back more control?

1) I am growing as much food as I can myself .

My aim for 2015 is to be largely self sufficient in fruit and veg.

I have a teeny back yard in which I keep a couple of hens for eggs, so there’s not much room for growing at home. Nevertheless I will challenge myself to grow as much as possible in this space in an effort to demonstrate that even those with tiny spaces can make a difference.

I have a half plot allotment that I’ve had for 2 years and is getting more productive, so I will aim to maximise production of that. 2015 will see it utilised mainly as a nursery and for annual crops that require frequent harvesting, such as beans, tomatoes, summer squash, salads, etc.

I have just signed up to another full sized allotment at a different site, this is fairly bare so I must make good plans to make optimum use of this space. This I plan to use for perennial crops and those that require little attention, such as potatoes, swedes, parsnips, etc.

I have a landshare arrangement in which I have access to a very large, though very overgrown and not very accessible, private garden. I could definitely make better use of this piece of land, the arrangement predates my allotment and I am afraid I’ve let it slip since having a more accessible plot. I have considered giving it up but it’s good to have a range of options, so I will carefully consider how best to utilise it in 2015.

In addition to these there are parks, woodland, beaches and countryside that can be foraged for wild foods.

2) I will try to raise/acquire my own meat, in conjunction with eating less of it!

As I live close to the sea I could definitely make more of an effort to catch local fish. I have to confess that I have never fished and this is something I need to remedy in 2015. There are mackerel in these parts and I like mackerel 😉

As mentioned I keep a couple of hens for eggs and could expand a little to include a few meat birds. My hens go broody at the drop of a hat so they could hatch  some chicks for me – I just need some fertile eggs and I know a lady who may have some ;). But first I need to tidy up my yard and move things around a little.

Another possibility is keeping rabbits for meat and I may do this too or quail…

I dream of having a goat and maybe piggies too but, at the moment, work and lack of suitable land mean that, sadly, I must wait for now.

3) I will trade for foods I cannot grow myself.

I have started a local group to share and exchange skills, resources, etc and one thing I plan to set up is a food swap network

http://foodswapnetwork.com/what-is-a-food-swap/

The idea being that participants bring items of food that they have produced/made themselves and swap with others. So one person might be a baker and bring bread and cakes, another might make jams and chutneys and yet another may have eggs from their hens and so on and so forth. People will trade amongst themselves and may also take or place ‘orders’.

4) I will shop locally and avoid big brands.

There will inevitably be foodstuffs that I can’t grow myself or acquire through my immediate network and for these I will shop locally as far as possible.

I could also add some urban foraging – ie skip diving for food, but I am unlikely to follow this up. Respect to those that do though. Of course a lot of food that is ‘skipped’ has been mass produced and so you’re depending on this. On the other hand the disgraceful waste of food is a symptom of a broken system and if you make use of the waste, at least you’re not lining the pockets of the corporations.

I think food waste is another subject to come back to, but for now it’s time for bed x

A quiet revolution

I have started this blog to diary my hopes, my thoughts, my views and my ideas about creating a positive change in this world. A collection of random witterings, rants, suggestions, recipes and how tos. I hope it’ll be entertaining and thought provoking and maybe inspire others to make a positive change.

A provocative name and a provocative title to my first post, but after many ponderings I have concluded that anarchy is the way forward.

Now anarchy has a bad reputation and has become synonymous with chaos and violence, but at it’s essence it just means an absence of central control. The powers that be like this bad reputation and would have us all believe that we are not to be trusted to take responsibility for our own actions without a government to direct us and take care of us. I beg to differ. There are of course those that have malicious intent, but that is the case now, and I’d venture to say that many of them are in positions of power.  I will refrain from a long rant on this matter for my first post but we’ll no doubt return to the subject (at length I imagine).

For now I will propose an alternative title to this anarchy – Co-operative Living. Doesn’t sound so bad does it? What if we all took responsibility for ourselves, what if we communicated with each other and reached a consensus on how we wanted to interact? What if we grew our own food within our local community and swapped and traded with each other directly? What if we shared our skills and resources amongst our community to benefit each other directly. What if money wasn’t based on debt? What if we didn’t need money? What if we didn’t need to ‘earn a living?’

I believe that revolution doesn’t have to be violent, that revolution can start in our own back yards, in our communities. We can move away from the central control in steps and when it becomes evident that people can do this, the central model will become obsolete.

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

It will be the governments who will be fighting us to hold on to their power. In fact it would appear this is already happening. There is chaos and violence everywhere and it’s incited by governments (prompted by corporations and bankers)

I recommend viewing the film ‘The Economics of Happiness’ for a glimpse of how communities can work together and the power of governments and corporations to tear unsuspecting communities apart. Unfortunately I can’t find it to view for free but there’s a trailer on you tube and lots of reviews and information about it if you’d like to search.

http://www.theeconomicsofhappiness.org/