The Story of Stuff

Annie Leonard’s been wondering…

The video which resulted from Annie’s deliberations is a must see for everyone who thinks it’s a good idea to keep our planet viable. It’s a must-see even if you don’t give a stuff about the planet but you just need an excuse to get off the madcap consumer roller coaster.

How did big business create a system that puts consumer products on the shelf for a fraction of their actual cost? We’ve all wondered about it. Annie went to find out and it changed her life.

She tells you in an entertaining and disturbing way how this obscene system started, how it functions, and why—one way or another—it cannot last. She’ll tell you the real cost of our addiction to stuff and why your grandchildren will pay for it tomorrow just as the world’s poor are paying for it right now.

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Please visit Annie and The Story of Stuff

Click right here to go to the Story of Stuff website where there’s a lot more stuff about our obsession with stuff. Annie has become  the Executive Director of Greenpeace USA recently, so has less hands-on role at the website.

Oil and the Seven Sisters: Part 1

Don’t believe in conspiracy theories?

Maybe, like me, you’ve been living in a dream world. A world where the Western democracies are actually democratic and our politicians aren’t corrupt and where the rich not only understand the trickle down theory, but also practise it.

You’ve been had. Welcome to the 99%.

Secrets of the Seven Sisters: Desert Storms and Fortunes

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Next episode coming soon.

Thomas Malthus redux

“It takes a good crisis to get us going. When we feel fear and we fear loss we are capable of quite extraordinary things.”

(Paul Gilding)”

Thomas Malthus got it right. It’s a pity we took a century and a half to admit it..

He pointed out that “The power of population is indefinitely greater than the power in the earth to produce subsistence for man”, in other words, you can’t expect continuous growth of consumption on a finite planet. He was vilified in his lifetime with the same fervour that the denial industry applies to climate change advocates today. More so in fact. His predictions of when we’d hit the wall didn’t turn out to be correct so his reputation has been assaulted ever since.

But he was right. His predictions went astray because he had no way of anticipating that the discovery of oil would allow us to extend the illusion of “sustainable growth” for another century or so by mining the sun’s energy from past millenia.

Paul Gilding spells it out in this 17 minute TED talk:

Have we used up all our resources? Have we filled up all the livable space on Earth? Paul Gilding suggests we have, and the possibility of devastating consequences, in a talk that’s equal parts terrifying and, oddly, hopeful.

Paul Gilding is an independent writer, activist and adviser on a sustainable economy. Click through to watch the onstage debate that followed this talk.

TED

You’re still being screwed–where are the occupiers of Wall St?

This is just unbelievable

See The Business Insider

These are, of course, US statistics, but the same trends are happening everywhere. The Aussies may have a respite but don’t bank on it lasting.

When are the 99% going to wake up? This is the sort of thing that led to the French aristocracy having a date with Monsieur Guillotine. And here, in western democracies, despite having the capacity to decide who rules our countries, we’ve allowed the union movement to be destroyed and our wealth to be stolen.

Let them eat cake

Corporate profit margins at an all-time high

Companies are making more per dollar of sales than they ever have before. (And some people are still saying that companies are suffering from “too much regulation” and “too many taxes.” Maybe little companies are, but big ones certainly aren’t).

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Profits graph: higher than ever

Fewer people with jobs

Continue reading “You’re still being screwed–where are the occupiers of Wall St?”

In 300 seconds: how we went down the gurgler

This cleverly crafted short video puts the biosphere’s present plight in a nutshell: how we got into a pickle; where we’re heading, ready or not; and what to do about it. In my next post I’ll show one extraordinary and promising way we can do something about it.

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If you prefer, you can watch this video in higher definition than mistywindow can display here on YouTube.

The Story of Stuff

Annie Leonard’s been thinking …

Click on the play button to watch Annie’s enlightening, entertaining and disturbing movie.

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The video which resulted from Annie’s deliberations is a must see for everyone who’d like to keep our planet viable. It’s a must-see even if you don’t give a stuff about the planet but you still need an excuse to get off the madcap consumer roller coaster.

How did big business create a system that puts consumer products on the shelf for a fraction of their actual cost? We’ve all wondered about it. Annie went to find out and it changed her life.

She will tell you how this obscene system started, how it functions, and why—one way or another—it cannot last. She’ll tell you the real cost of our addiction to stuff and why your grandchildren will pay for it tomorrow just as the world’s poor are paying for it right now.

Please visit Annie and The Story of Stuff

Click right here to go to the Story of Stuff website.

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Annie

Deep disaster

TED is a small nonprofit devoted to Ideas Worth Spreading. It started out (in 1984) as a conference bringing together people from three worlds: Technology, Entertainment, Design.

Jeremy Jackson: How we wrecked the ocean

Jeremy Jackson is the Ritter Professor of Oceanography and Director of the Center for Marine Biodiversity and Conservation at the Scripps Institution of Oceanography. He knows what he’s talking about. His recent talk on TED.com is disturbing. I knew that we’ve been busily killing the ocean for a century or so. I didn’t know how successfully and catastrophically. Please watch this vitally important talk:

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We need to listen to Dr jackson and we need to take action.

Now would be good.


TED is the thinking person’s Youtube:

TED is a small nonprofit devoted to Ideas Worth Spreading. It started out (in 1984) as a conference bringing together people from three worlds: Technology, Entertainment, Design.