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It's time to stir the stew

Observations from the Edge
Robert T. Nanninga
Coast News
January 5, 2007


"Growth for the sake of growth is the ideology of the cancer cell." — Edward Abbey

Edward Abbey was a wise man. Edward Abbey also said "A patriot must always be ready to defend his country against his government." and "Rebellion for good cause is self-justifying...a good in itself." Edward Abbey was a very wise man.

The time of playing nice is over. The development industry dominates all others, to the point of complete and contemptuous corruption. From Sacramento, down to the smallest of City halls, California politics is rotten to the core. Festering with greed and personal agenda, the goal is no longer about maintaining the commons. And if government is unwilling to protect the commons, it is up to the people to do so.

Government is broken, and the only way to fix it is to aggressively dismantle it. And I am not talking about voting in a new batch of crooks and lapdogs to power. 50 years of pro-development legislation now mandates over population, over development, over consumption, traffic gridlock, unsustainable resources depletion, unemployment, economic injustice in the name of short tern economic gain.

Communities that want to limit growth, are threatened with economic sanctions.. Residents that want to protect property values and their quality of life from carpet bagging developers and land speculators, are called whiners and worse. Most elected officials, seduced by the money offered them to go along with status quo, becoming part of the problem shortly after taking office, in order to maintain that office.

And if elected officials are complicit in the disenfranchisement of residents and small business owners, Bureaucrats and government employees have no incentive to challenge the paradigm they're paid to maintain. In Encinitas, the majority of city employees do not live in Encinitas, thereby it is easy for them to say "It's not my problem, I am only doing my job."

Municipal employees know that more development means the generation of more taxes, and thereby more money to divert into their salaries and pension programs. Planning is not done to benefit the commons, rather to benefit the bottom line for a few. Meanwhile, more and more people, struggle to get by with less and less, as ecosystems supporting our very existence, exponentially degrade.

Government has become an industry, controlled by corporations. Once a noble idea, human greed has morphed the ideals of just governance into a employment scheme for the handmaids to disaster. Government should not be a job.

It's time for change.

As a Green, I would never advocate armed revolution. Instead it is time for citizens to pick up the mantle of Rosa Parks and Martin Luther King. Now is the time for civil disobedience and economic boycott. If that proves ineffective, then perhaps as a last resort we look to the strategies of Earth First and the Animal Liberation Front for remedy. Capt. Paul Watson comes to mind as well.

Working within the system does not work, as the system is designed to work you, while maintaining the system. Having worked as an activist, and then from within, I've learned real change comes from struggle, and violent upheaval.

Personally, I think it is the right of citizens to say when enough is enough. Remember the concept, "We the people? Notice how it doesn't say "We the rich people," or "We the really well-connected people." Or "We the people that want to kill the planet for profit."

Edward Abbey also said, "Society is like a stew. If you don't stir it up every once and a while then a layer of scum floats to the top."

It's time to fight the cancer of growth, and the government bodies on which it thrives. It's time for the scalpel of rebellion. It's time to stir the stew.

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