Tuesday, March 13, 2018

Natural Resource prices and costs of extraction have declined simultaneously with increasing quantities of extraction for a long time. In a Hotelling sense this indicates decreasing scarcity since low cost resources normally would be used first and quantities of extraction normally would decrease ov...
In the picture on the left, the "star" of the scene is the decorative crown. It's not nothing. There's heart and SOUL in that little piece of structure. It's the crowning jewel of the tower. Now you impose a much larger and harsher intervention, with brighter colors, to distract from the crown. To disrespect that feeling, that delicacy, that softness and lyricism. This is bad manners, visually, culturally and otherwise. People with that degree of insensitive can't run a community wisely. I'm glad this is being brought to light here; it might well be a metaphor for the buttu-ization of Jamaica, with all that this implies. My own struggle to overcome it in other areas of my behavior makes me recognize bad manners when I see it in the visual world. It cuts across all classes and issues.
PLANNING RE SAB (and anywhere else)

Planning and preservation indeed! If you fail to plan you plan to fail. And we ARE tying to figure how to save colonial heritage, which is a basis for tourism and having a sense of identity. A lot of people are passionate about putting up new buildings, while I've spent my life opposing new buildings. All over Jamaica, they have erased history through demolition of the old. The cement to build them comes at the cost of environment and scenic value. I wonder if a better way to provide jobs can'rt be found. 

We must consider fossil fuel for all the modern conveniences--electricty, cooling, refrigeration, transportation--that come with new buildings. 

There is climate crisis. The percentage of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere is higher than in all of human history.

We have a topsoil crisis, vegetation is being scraped away uncritically, wildlife has halved in the past 40 years, the oceans are almost dead.

We have a population crisis. Population has doubled in the last 40 years alone, based on the the exponential growth factor. This crisis in growth troubles the heck out of me, even if it doesn't disturb others at all. Half the Amazon Rainforest, the lungs of the planet, has gone since I was born. 

I don't put individual rights over the ability of planetary life to exist in the future. 

If there was planning people with land wouldn't be left hanging. There would be transfer of development rights, like we sort of have in some places here. The land holder gets money from the sale of their development quota to a buyer in a "receiver" site that is allowed to build more densely than would be normal for that zoning. But while that is more thoughtful and fair, we're still up against absolute limits of a finite world. So I don't know what is a fair way out of the hell we've backed into. One suggestion might be to wrest deserted buildings away in some deal and compensate open-land owners by letting them restore it and use it profitably.

It's not that I have any power over planning, or the destruction of the planet. It's not that my side is winning. It's just that as long as I live, I will oppose new buildings with my puny ability to affect anything. I can give assurance that I'm not into win/lose outcomes. I believe you have to plan like crazy to avoid that and see that everyone comes out with something. You can turn lemons into lemonade. Every dark cloud has a silver lining. Open land can be used for camping and retreats..,.producing some income rather than none. All of these thorny issues require intense planning.

Saturday, March 10, 2018


Hypermodernity would seem to be the apotheosis of civilization. OK, so we
re down to the individual themself. It is often compellingly said that the individual is the microcosm of the whole. That whole, apparently, is run in several way: self organization, the surveillance state, and the internet.  It is still unclear whether we can't evolve beyond this abject state of powerlessness surveillance enables, or learn to use the internet for survivable social organizing.


Sunday, March 4, 2018




A serious break on art as revolution is not understanding energy dependence (as it is uniquely taught here on OFW). We do , however, have to guard against viewing energy in a one sided manner--as physical to the exclusion of behavioral.

Something I wrote elsewhere might apply her;

"While in Mexico in the late 60's, I met a historian researching slavery there, and he assured me that there were more slaves in Mexico than in the US during the 18th century (or some period therein anyway). With the enormous Hispanic population in the US, as well as the large number of southerners "passing," DNA tests ought to demonstrate that people who qualify as black under America's "one drop" culture would qualify the the USA as a majority black country."


Since we've been discussing raw physical energy as a means of colonizing, how about considering it from the opposite end AS WELL and as a process of cultural dominance? It's not as though we'll all blend in and be the same one day. That "one day" is looking mightily as though it could miss the bus. The issues are about now. Right at this very moment, America is arguably a black majority country, and numbers are a major driver of energy impacts. What we do with this knowledge makes a big difference in how we see energy.