Categories Archives: The Problem: Civilization » Alienation & Mental Health

Groomed to Consume

Featured image: Black Friday, by John Henderson (cc by ND 2.0) by Anja Lyngbaek / Local Futures With Christmas coming up, household consumption will soon hit its yearly peak in many countries. Despite homely pictures of tranquility on mass-produced greeting cards, Christmas is more about frenzied shopping and overspending than peace on earth or quality time with family and … Continue reading Groomed to Consume

Jacques Ellul: A Prophet for Our Tech-Saturated Times

     by Andrew Nikiforuk / Local Futures By now you have probably read about the so-called “tech backlash.” Facebook and other social media have undermined what’s left of the illusion of democracy, while smartphones damage young brains and erode the nature of discourse in the family. Meanwhile computers and other gadgets have diminished our attention … Continue reading Jacques Ellul: A Prophet for Our Tech-Saturated Times

New CDC Estimates: A Record 72,000 US Drug Overdose Deaths in 2017

     by Kate Randall /  World Socialist Web Site Drug overdose deaths in the US topped 72,000 in 2017, according to new provisional estimates released by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). This staggering figure translates into about 200 drug overdose deaths every day, or about one every eight minutes. The new CDC … Continue reading New CDC Estimates: A Record 72,000 US Drug Overdose Deaths in 2017

Our New, Happy Life? The Ideology of Development

     by Charles Eisenstein In George Orwell’s 1984, there is a moment when the Party announces an “increase” in the chocolate ration – from thirty grams to twenty. No one except for the protagonist, Winston, seems to notice that the ration has gone down not up. “Comrades!” cried an eager youthful voice. “Attention, comrades! We … Continue reading Our New, Happy Life? The Ideology of Development

Soft Power

Featured image: Painting by Kaipo, age 4     by Boris Forkel / Deep Green Resistance Germany Since the beginning of history, attempts have been made to develop power techniques with which our moral sensitivities can be undermined, so to speak, which activate less resistance in the people. These power techniques are now often referred to … Continue reading Soft Power

Technology and Its Discontents

Featured image: JD Lasica, Flickr, c.c. 2.0      by Steven Gorelick / Local Futures Tucked within the pages of the January issue of the Agriview, a monthly farm publication published by the State of Vermont, was a short survey from the Department of Public Service (DPS). Described as an aid to the Department in drafting … Continue reading Technology and Its Discontents

Livin’ the Screen Life: #productsmakemehappy

  John Savage / Local Futures Important official legal disclaimer: This is a short work of fiction. Any resemblances to real people, people you may know, people you think you may know, etc., is entirely deliberate. When I’m at work I’m staring at a screen. When I’m not at work I’m staring at screens. Checking social … Continue reading Livin’ the Screen Life: #productsmakemehappy