"It’s strange, isn’t it? The ideology of capitalism is that it is a system that generates immense abundance (so much stuff!). But in reality it is a system that relies on the constant production of scarcity.
This conundrum was first noticed back in 1804, and became known as the Lauderdale Paradox. Lauderdale pointed out that the only way to increase “private riches” (basically, GDP) was to reduce what he called “public wealth”, or the commons. To enclose things that were once free so that people have to pay in order to access them. To illustrate, he noted that colonialists would often even burn down trees that produced nuts and fruits so that local inhabitants wouldn’t be able to live off of the natural abundance of the earth, but would be forced to work for wages in order to feed themselves. "
Degrowth: A Call for Radical Abundance
I just want to finish this personal rant y saying that anyone who has been on the receiving end of British colonialism will not find any of this new. The British nation was built on persecution, the denial of basic rights and exploitation of humans all over the world.
What is interesting in this case is that the UK is a country in decline. Its empire is fading, but those old imperial habits are hard to scrub out. I genuinely believe what we are living through is the inward direction of those imperial tendencies. It is not a coincidence that all of this lurch to the extreme right is being fuelled by a nostalgic fever dream of the "British Empire 2.0."
I'm only putting this out there because I am genuinely afraid of what will happen to me and people like me in the next few years. I live in Northern Ireland and Jonhon and co are intent on destabilising this place and ruining the lice of everyone here for their own petty political gains. I feel like we are falling into a pit.
The English government has also championed a long campaign of hatred against immigrants and the LGBTQIA+ community (especially trans people). Likewise they have also ramped up police force and unlawful or dubious arrests against members of young people belong to ethnic minorities. Suggestions are being put in place to roll back trans rights, and an attempt was made to place trans people who change their name on a public register--a register which they would share with registered sex offenders.
Police are facing regular accusations of lack of transparency and accountability and carrying out the will of the government with deliberate choices being made to overlook where the government is breaking the law.
Soon, civil servants will have the power to order police to search and arrest benefit claimants, as well as scour through person bank accounts and social media. (cont)
This follows a decade-long trend of Conservative governments in England lurching futher and further to the right, a trend which has been ramped up by Boris Johnson.
Johnson with the help of his ministers has been defanging laws and institutions in the UK which are proclaimed to help keep the government accountable.
They placed draconian arbitrary measures w/ vague wording to stifle the right to protest under a new policing law, put friends of the Conservative party in places of power within public bodies like the Equality and Rights Commission (where such friends have expressed disdain for minority rights), dramatically increased the role of the state in regulating speech online under more vague rules, attempted to shut down parliament to pass through controversial legislation with no oversight from opposing MPs, financially gutted and placed restrictions on public news organisations, and attacked human rights lawyers, leading to death threats from the far right. (cont)
The United Kingdom is becoming a Fascist police state.
The UK government has been trying to deport asylum seekers to detention facilities in Rwanda. British courts have ruled that this was lawful, however the move has been blocked (so far) by the European Court of Human Rights, a legal institution separate from the EU which was co-established by the UK.
In the ongoing surge of anti-European sentiment, this has made the ECHR a target of Brexit-style British jingoist anger. Boris Johnson's government is now threatening to pull out of the European Convention of Human Rights.
It is worth keeping in mind that the Convention legally enshrined people's right to things things like freedom from torture, freedom from slavery, freedom of expression, thought, assembly, education, participation in elections, a fair trial, and many many more fundamental rights--right which any society that calls itself free and democratic should, as a bare minimum, be expected to uphold.
My job in the LGBTQIA+ sector recently came to a sudden halt because funding was dropped. This is difficult because I was transitioning at work socially--it was the olny workplace in which I felt comfortable doing so. I've went back to my old job as an out and open trans woman and the reception has been mixed.
If anyone knows of any jobs focused on working with women and/or LGBTQIA+ people, based in Europe (inc. the UK), please let me know. I have experience with working in homelesssness, harm reduction, policy research and advocacy.
"Giving improves your quality of living. My relationship to prosperity evolved the moment I unsubscribed from scarcity-driven logic and offered myself up to the universe as a conduit from which blessings could flow into the lives of others. I’ve worked very hard and made many sacrifices, and I am finally bearing the fruits of my labor."
-- Thriving While Trans, Ashlee Marie Preston
How many people are actually willing to build something new, to take a risk and place their soul in a promise? Things can go wrong, but what if they go right? It's much easier to focus on the negative, but the use of that habit is limited at the best of times. A cynic sees the price of everything but the value of nothing.
The world can be such a cold and dark place, be different and bear the flame of Hope—never conceal it, even if it's only a smoking ember. Practice patience, empathy, joy. Have faith in the future and other people, and turn that faith into action. I promise you this approach yields more fruit than any other.
trying my hand at making my own clothes and starting with a toile (prototype) of a full circle skirt... it's a little rough so far but not bad for a complete beginner
COVID-19, Important info
UNICEF's guidelines on washing hands in the context of COVID-19. Please read and share.
On Saturday I went to a protest against the Turkish invasion of North and East Syria and Rojava
One of our cooperative members has kindly volunteered to take over, I will post more details tomorrow.
As I've stated a few weeks ago, I'm currently looking for a replacement to take over ownership of the sunbeam.city domain and our servers. I still haven't found a permanent replacement, which means I will have to shut down the site in due time.
My personal circumstances have changed drastically over the last year and I no longer have the resource or energy to invest in SBC. I haven't been able to keep up with the Mastodon community and I've fallen out of sync with recent developments. Sunbeam City deserves better than an absentee admin and I can not in good conscience keep the place running without stronger participation.
If any of our longer term users would be happy to take on this responsibility get in touch with me, otherwise over the next few weeks I will be starting the process of shutting the site and co-op down over the next few weeks, beginning with a cooperative proposal on what to do with our excess funds.
Compassion, cooperation, abundance, flourishing Ⓐ
founder and former admin of sunbeam city
tá gaeilge agam
Sunbeam City is a anticapitalist, antifascist solarpunk instance that is run collectively.