Energy literacy is the education we need

Future School

A 1910 call for predictions about the year 2000 included this vision of how students will learn, one not far from what Teach Paperless sees. Image: French National Library.

Fans of late night television may remember a prognosticating segment from the Conan O’Brien Show where Conan and sidekick Andy Richter would “take a look into the future…all the way to the year 2000!”

Dimming the lights, donning black capes and using flashlights beamed upward onto their faces to look “futuristic,” Conan and Andy made goofball predictions such as, “Twinkies from 1973 will still be fresh,” in between a band member singing a high pitched chorus of “In the year two thousand, in the year two thou-sand!”

Given that Conan’s show was running in the 1990s at the time, the joke was always that no all-pervasive physics-altering futuristic world had yet arrived, nor was it like to. Instead, a prosaic world of non-sequitur possibilities was our likely inheritance. Conan’s now created the “In the year 3,000,” version, with similarly un-futuristic results.

Beam me up, Scotty

But our cultural predisposition to believe that the future will always be shinier, robotized and fantastically hyper-connected hasn’t diminished in the wake of Conan’s unmasking. That’s why we get magazine bits with economists, engineers and others offering their take on what life will be like mid-century. Predictably, it’s always steeped in a vast disconnection from the real world of actual resources and complexities such as energy sources, populations, climate and history.

One such list was pointed to recently by a Facebook friend, “21Things That Will Become Obsolete in Education by 2020″ from a blog called Teach Paperless, a consortium of writers exploring life in its digitized form.

Some of the items listed are uncontroversial, such as rearranging classroom furnishings to teach more forum style rather than hierarchically, and more through practice than just theory. Or imagining that better cafeteria food will be on offer, though in this case the author,  Shelly Blake-Plock, attributes better food to the phenomenon of handheld devices, which is essentially what he gives as reasoning for almost everything that’s going to happen in education over the next nine years. He says kids doing online comparison shopping will force out $3 servings of macaroni and cheese. Where the lower-cost, higher quality food will come from is left out of his explanation.

Out of the loop

I can’t fault Blake-Plock too much. Like most of the world, he likely didn’t get the memo on energy decline, living as we do with a nearly total news blackout on one of the most crucial topics that’s going to drastically and unmistakably affect our lives in the coming years, as soon as 2020.

Without that knowledge, Blake-Plock and others like him imagine a future of dizzying innovation delivered via the interface of mobile devices, Tweets and chargers. This class of people naturally describe an increasing relationship between technology, communications and computing of all sorts, orbiting around e-social networks that will, it is presumed, run indefinitely on an endless supply of cheap, available energy. It’s a utopia where we never sleep and where we work all the time — but happily so since it’s all “social” and compelling and the difference between work and leisure is eroded in the playground of electronica.

And there’s no end to this. Consider a few of Blake-Plock’s ideas about how we’ll deal in the future…all the way to the year 2020.

Texting our way to paradise

One of the obsolete elements for him will be parent-teacher conference nights. Instead, he says,

Ongoing parent-teacher relations in virtual reality will make parent-teacher conference nights seem quaint. Over the next ten years, parents and teachers will become closer than ever as a result of virtual communication opportunities. And parents will drive schools to become ever more tech integrated.

How nice. I’m sure teachers will love adding to their list of chores keeping up virtual relationships with 30-80 parents, always on call to answer their latest text messages.

Sure, teachers already e-mail parents. But seriously—we’ll be so absorbed into our shiny little screens that we’ll no longer care to have a face-to-face conversation with our kids’ instructors, getting to know them in a human way? And we’ll give our already underpaid teachers more to do, expecting each to maintain a Facebook “group” for parents or host weekly mass Skype calls? And what about when teachers can’t keep up — will failure to text back in a timely manner be cause for dismissal? Apparently drilling down into the implications of such a techno-fantasy is inconvenient for Blake-Plock, possibly an intellectual casualty of the very social networks he exalts.

Forget attendance offices, too, says Blake-Plock. They’ll be gone, replaced with “bio scans. ‘Nuff said.”

Ah, so, not only will the world have produced the long-feared bio-identity chip to implant in our bodies and those of our children, but it will have manufactured and distributed them pervasively as well. I’m sure no one will object to that. Is Foursquare behind this? Will being last to school assure that you get to be the “mayor” that day?

But Blake-Plock really gives his prejudices away on item #3, Computers, which she says will be obsolete…sort of.

Ok, so this is a trick answer. More precisely this one should read: “Our concept of what a computer is.” Because computing is going mobile and over the next decade we’re going to see the full fury of individualized computing via handhelds come to the fore. Can’t wait.

So our kids will be doing everything hunched over a screen the size of baby’s palm? Okay. Fortunately since Blake-Plock imagines the near disappearance of actual schools (excepting the bevy of green buildings he sees being built to accommodate the new wall-less, experiential, paperless, techno-utopia of 24-7 learning driven by the social-network innovators who will set the pace that will put teachers who can’t keep up out of a job), we won’t have to see this sea of kids hunched together separately, wired into zones that tickle their nerve centers but leave their bodies behind.

I’m tired just thinking about all this efficiency.

Energy is to economy what air is to breathing

But moreover I’m saddened that so many people are so hooked into a fantasy about a hyper-wired future that has little if not zero chance of ever manifesting.

Cell phone and hand-held technology depend on myriad inputs that are not simply conjured from thin air, however magically they appear in iStores and Web ads. All that plastic wrapping of the device itself comes from…you guessed it, petroleum. Oil. The very stuff the International Energy Agency said has hit its peak. In the future, all the way to the year 2020 (and before) the cost for everything is going up, uP, UP! And all this because of the increasing scarcity and rising cost of energy. That’s difficult on its own, and made no easier when jobs are going down, down, down. This is the dot to connect to make predictions about the future.

The amount of rare earth elements needed for production of “a handheld in every pot” is astronomical. The coal-fired power to ramp up all these mobile devices on a daily basis is also a pretty big ask from the electricity sector, especially when coal is peaking out, too.

The practicalities under-girding every vision of the techno-utopian vision are shattered when we look at what it would really take to deliver such materials. Similarly, if you’re  imagining a future of growing industries, you might want to connect that possibility to the state of the economy, which is currently defined by spreading sovereign debt crises, dried up credit, ghost wealth and banking corruption that’s just shy of killing us all.

Memo to the dreamers: it’s great to dream. There’s a lot to be said for how we are already connecting using networks and innovative communication devices. And I’m definitely in the camp that wants to see the amazing Internet preserved in the inescapable economic contraction that we’re now more or less permanently faced with. I say permanent not because I’m pessimistic, but because economic growth relies on energy and our energy paradigm is built on oil, gas, coal and nuclear (uranium), all of which are in permanent decline.

If you wish to see the Internet preserved as something that does connect us, does allow for the sharing of information, does spur remarkable opportunities and learning, your focus should not be on how whiz-bang you can make its next iteration, all the way to portable devices implanted in our visual cortexes as we dematerialize to and from school Star Trek style.

Chop wood, carry water

Instead you’ll be asking how can learning happen using less, not more energy. You’ll be focusing on what kinds of work kids can really do in the future, which will look a whole lot more like cobbling shoes, tailoring clothes, glass blowing and farming than like Harry Potter’s moving newspapers and a satellite for every school district.

No matter what you might have heard, there’s no such thing as a perpetual motion machine. And today’s reigning techno-fantasy for cheap abundant power, nuclear fusion, is forever 20 years and 3 trillion dollars away.

Anyone who wants to do some learnin’, and cares about how kids will learn in the future, should invest some up-front time in gaining basic energy literacy for the 21st century. That’s an education that will do you, and everyone else a world of good. The bad news is that what you’ll find is that we’ll have less and less of the stuff that’s driven our economies, lifestyles and opportunities and that we —  like Blake-Plock’s dire predictions for the paper, printing and copier industries — will “either adjust or perish.”

It’s very difficult for people to imagine, much less accept, a decline and loss of lifestyle and cultural paradigms. Mental resistance to this is acute. Picturing a future of rotary phones, good old fashioned letters and electricity only on for two hours a day seems laughable, I know. But the geologic facts of resource decline are unmistakable. Far better then to imagine a future of key priorities strategically parceled out, than to lose one’s head in grandiose fantasies that won’t stand up to the hard reality on the ground.

Get that one straight, and you get an A plus.

–Lindsay Curren, Transition Voice

You might also enjoy

Comments

  1. says

    Coincidentally, I recently began a series on Reverse Engineering about the challenges facing Education in the world that stadns before us. Part II addresses many of the issues Lindsay brought up in her article, so I will add it below. I make my living as a teacher in Alaska, so the topic is near and dear to my heart.

    As we move closer and closer to the Post-Peak Oil world there becomes an ever greater chasm between what we actually teach in schools and what the children in them really need to know to have some chance at making it through the world as it will become. I wrote in the first part of this series about the Information Overload presented to both the students and the teachers, which has its roots in the exponentially increasing knowledge base created by the Industrial Revolution, then followed by the ability to access all that knowledge across the IT platform of the Internet. In this segment of the series, I’m going to take a look at specific types of information and the organization of the education system where it stands now versus where itneeds to go in the future.

    As we progressed up the ladder of sientific knowledge and technological inventions, to become a part of the Great Machine and get a “good job” took a lot of education and then specialization. At the beginning of this growth phase, this type of education was available to very few people, there were only a few Universities out there which offered an education at the cutting edge of technology and they were out of the reach of most people, both financially and based on the lower level education they had received. Up to WWII, many if not most people finished with school by the 6th Grade and went out into the working world in some fashion. In the post WWII years, having competition in the labor force with 13 year olds was untenable, so laws were passed against child labor, and virtually all students were warehoused right through High School until they were 18.

    As High Schools developed in the period from about 1940 to 1970 or so, they had two tracks, a “trade” track and a “college bound” track. Students were placed in these tracks through Intelligence Testing of one sort or another, which is mos closely correlated to the socioeconomic status of the head of household, the father usually during this period. So, kids with well to do Professional parents got tracked as College Bound, and children of the working class got tracked in Trade Education. This worked fairly well until the Trade Jobs started to disappear from our shores and moved over to lower wage countries.

    At this point, the College Bound track was determined necessary for EVERYONE, because without a College Education there weren’t any good paying jobs being created in the trades. This necessitated a vast expansion of the number of Colleges, and a vast expansion of a means to pay for that education, which was the Federally Guaranteed Student Loans.

    A few years down the line, you get an explosion of people graduating from these Colleges, well educated to greater or lesser degrees in specific fields. Tons of folks piled into the IT field, eventually by the 90s there were more of them than the industry needed, not even including the competition from abroad. The Clarion Call in the Ronald Rayguns years when I did my first stint in teaching was that we had to increase the quality and quantity of Science and Math that the kids were learning in order to compete on the Global playing field. This was essentially so much horseshit. A few Universities produced all the Science and Math Wizards we ever really needed, producing more of them simply gluts the market and people with advanced degrees can’t find jobs in their fields of study.

    We are not the only ones with this problem, the Chinese are lauded for the fact they do so well in Science and Math, but the Chinese (and the Russians, and the Indians etc) have tons of Unemployed Ph.D.s or lucky enough to be working at a sales job. At least under their old Communist systems these Ph.D.s did not rack up $100K in debt to get the education, it came free from the State. Here we have a whole generation of people who have accumulated a debt they never will be able to pay off, but legally speaking can’t even be discharged in a bankruptcy!

    So what does this mean for our education system as it is running today? Well, the thing is that the whole “College Bound” track percolated its way right down into the Elementary Schools, and nowadays besides Reading, Writing and Arithmetic you are expected to teach all sorts of concepts about Science, along with presenting the Approved History of our country, including how the Pilgrims made friends with the Indians and got Corn from them, how the Founding Fathers established Liberty and Justice for all under the Constitution, blah blah.

    I bet you guys think that since I am such an iconoclast I go ahead and teach my students MY view of American History. Nothing could be further from the truth for a variety of reasons. First one is self-preservation. Just about every other person in my school BUYS the History they learned as the TRUTH. We do the Pledge of Allegiance every morning just like in the Old Days, and when the Music Teacher puts together a Thanksgiving Program, its complete with all the Pilgrims Costumes and Friendly Indians etc. If I went about teaching the students that the Pilgrims passed out Samllpox Infected blankets to the Natives and that the Founding Fathers were a bunch of Aristocrats mainly concerned with avoiding Taxation and protecting their own piles of wealth, I’d be bringing down the Wrath of God on my head on a daily basis, either from the parents or the other teachers I work with. I’m not suicidal, I’m NOT gonna do that.

    Besides the fact its Politically Incorrect to be telling your Blank Mushy Brained 3rd through 5th Grade students anything resembling the TRUTH about history and Politics is the fact that even if you were so inclined, out there in that vast amount of Information Overload teaching materials to present such a pointof view simply do not EXIST. Google up content on the Vikings, you find all sorts of cool stories with Cartoon Vikings and Longships in them, along with the nicely Sanitized view of Vikings that we are supposed to teach the kiddoes. Just like the nicely sanitized version of Westward Expansion, just like the sanitized version of our political system. Unless you are prepared to write it all yourself and do all the cartoon illustrations yourself, you never could teach anything about the Vikings without accessing the gobs of sanitized shit about Vikings you can find for 3rd Grade students.

    About all I will do after passing out some Viking History story accompanied by the requisite Multiple Choice and Short Answer Questions is inform the kiddoes that this period probably wasn’t quite what its made out to be, and to think for themselves what life must have been like back then and how people would behave in those circumstances. Occassionally I get a lively discussion out of this, even with kids. However, in terms of what actually goes into their notebooks, its all the Approved History that I can Google up to entertain them.

    Next area is Science, which although it doesn’t generally pose the same kind of Political problems presenting a different view of History does, again I wonder to myself when I’m teaching it just WTF am I teaching it? The NASA website has tons of cool activities for kids, one of them is a file of Models of the various Satellites and Planetary Explorers they have ejected up into Space over the years which you can print up onto Card Stock and then assemble. I love building models and this also entertains this age group of children, and they practice fine motor skills cutting out all the little pieces, so this year as our Class Science Project I am going to have them build some of these models. Then we will make a nice Display Board with the 3-D models, along with all the facts they have learned about the Planets. They can dream about becoming Astronauts or Scientists as I once did and exploring the Stars.

    Except for one little problem here, NASA is outta money, there is no replacement for the Space Shuttle and about anything we do send up into Space here in the future is going to be aboard a Russian Rocket utilizing 1960s era technology, for as long as that lasts. None of these kids are going to grow up to be Astronauts, and really WTF CARES what Jupiter is made of or if there might be some Planet in some other Star System that might support life? We aren’t EVER going there, we can look up in the Sky at night and learning the positions of these planets and all the stars has relevance to Navigation, but exactly what they are made of is completely worthless knowledge. Nevertheless, again I can pull up all sorts of worksheets on the Moons of Jupiter, complete with nice Pics from the Hubble Telescope. Lots more useless facts to drop into their heads, while at the same time keeping them entertained dreaming about a future that will never be.

    So OK, I do try to BALANCE this somewhat again by doing practical things, showing them how levers work and how to measure different types of quantities and so forth. What makes a Boat Float is important to understand, and how to BUILD a boat that will float and moreover be stable and easy to control is even more important. Understanding solid geometry and why a Geodesic Dome holds itself up is important, and more important is knowing how to build one out of materials you have available. You know, I built a 15 foot on center dome utilizing Bamboo garden sticks 4 feet in length which I got in packages of 20 for $2. That’s more than 600 square feet of living space, bigger than the apartment I lived in NYC before I got married. WAY bigger than the Freightliner I lived in for 6 years. I didn’t surface it, but I could have with tons of cheap materials currently out there for Scavenging like Carboard and Insulation boards or wallboard. Cut and fitted properly, all these materials will self support in a Geodesic Dome. I can build one for practically NOTHING. Drop a Franklin Stove inside it, cut up enough wood or dig up enough coal, it would be toasty warm through the Alaska Winter. Knowing how to do THAT is much more important than knowing that Jupiter is a Gas Giant with pressures and gravity so great no Human Being will ever set foot on it mor be able to mine it for its vast supply of methane gas.

    As we proceed along the spin down here, I see fewer and fewer people going to college, and eventually even the High Schools disappearing from the landscape. Right now, the High Schools are totally WRONG in their concept and its becoming increasingly difficult for teachers in those schools to maintain discipline. Why? Because what they are teaching the students do not need to know, and they KNOW that. Why would they go on to College, when all that means is building up an unpayable debt, when their older brothers and sisters who went through it are currently just as UE as everybody else is? At this point really, HS Teachers are nothing more than Prison Guards trying to keep the population of Prisoners from Rioting because of boredom. Just as it was 100 years ago, about the only place you will find real education going on in HS is in Elite Private ones servicing the folks at the top of the economic pyramid. I believe a similar situation exists in China as well. I do not for a MINUTE believe that schools in the vast impoverished areas of China are producing endless Science and Math Wizards. The ones the Chinese COUNT who go into their Statistics are the ones in the developed areas run by the Chinese Elite. The fact they have 4 times as many people means they end up with more Wizards who can take spots here in our Universities, but percentage wise I doubt they really are doing all that much better that we are. The socio-economic problems are the same. There simply are not JOBS for such highly educated people in a society which has reached the Limits to Growth. We have more than enough Science and Math Wizards than we will ever need.

    As we transition toward the post Industrial Age, IMHO “School” as it now exists needs to finish around the 6th Grade, 9th Grade the latest. Dropping 12 year olds out into the world to function as adults in the society probably cannot be accomplished too quickly, 15 is more likely a good medium term target. High Schools, Colleges and Universities as they now exist are a Dinosaur. They are economically unsustainable. I would keep a few of each around, because a few well educated folks are helpful to any society, but you do not need gobs of them. I wouldn’t provide any major economic incentive for becoming well educated nor would I put a price on becoming educated. People who want to learn for learning’s sake will do so and mos folks will quit the leraning game past the point its not interesting to them or not productive for their lives to know a whole heck of a lot more than they learned in Kindergarten.

    This adjustment period will take time, it won’t happen overnight (at least hopefully not, because that would be utter anarchy) but I believe it will come over time here. In the short term, the first system which gotta go is the plethora of Community Colleges, where students are racking up debt for no good reason whatsoever. After that a vast reduction in the number of High Schools, concomittant with a change in the laws which make individuals “adult” members of society at 15 or so. If you have not learned what you need to know by then in the post Peak Oil world, you are basically SOL. Be it known, I am quite the neo-Darwinist in this respect, and I realize that this will wash out quite a few kids. At the same time, the society can’t support the pradigm of endlessely educating kids for Jobs that do not exist, learning stuff they just do not really need to know and which bores them. You have to parse out what you need to know, and how long it takes to acquire that much knowledge. For the most part, you should be able to accumulate that by the time you pass through Puberty. If you haven’t, you just are not cutting the mustard.

    You cannot save them all.

    RE

    • John Andersen says

      Thanks for this well thought out reply.

      I agree the current outdated system needs to deconstruct gradually, and young people need to find places in a post industrial society in which they can perform useful functions such as growing food, repairing things, building shelter, and sewing clothes.

  2. Auntiegrav says

    With all of the hype over teachers, schools, unions, budgets, etc…
    I’m not surprised that nobody has a discussion about the integrity of the teaching.
    It happens, though. It happens in the locker rooms and backyards and on facebook. The kids know about the lies (at least the curious ones do).

    Lindsay, you have again demonstrated a wonderful grasp of the situation.
    RE,
    The kids know a lot more than the system gives them credit for: especially how to lie to their parents and teachers. That’s really what we are teaching them with the modern system of systems.
    We need to stop giving them Hope and trophies and start giving them some useful work to do.

    • says

      Well, I have two kids, 14 and 16, and I don’t agree that we should stop giving them hope. There should always be hope in life, else what is life for? But I don’t think we should model an unsustainable system, or believe that the next new device is going to make doing all of our work so whiz-bang-push-a-button-and-GO!

      Mainly I don’t believe minds are tethered to reality when they don’t connect the dots between how energy is the key ingredient not only in all we make, manufacture and do, but as the driver of our economy and so of our dominant paradigms—how and in what manner we live and will live going forward. I don’t think it logically follows that this results in a loss of promise and hope—your name in electronic lights is not the be all end all of human experience. I am still an advocate of meaningful work and life experiences for people, I just don’t see them ramping up higher into energy-dependent modalities nor do I see any kind of “techno-fix” on the horizon that will replace fossil fuels as the raw material and fuel of 98% of all we make and do. It follows then that it will likely look more “world made by hand.” Hopefully we’ll focus on making that meaningful, and not a depressing loss of what would have been a better deal.

      Best,

      Lindsay

  3. says

    Hey Lindsay,

    A few things; not trying to be snarky, pardon the tone if it sounds that way.

    a) Have you actually read any of the other 1,000 articles posted on TeachPaperless.com? If so, you may have noticed that the views presented are a bit more varied than what — I think — you are making this author sound like in this piece. That said, the author does stand by the original piece, it was a fun exercise — as these sorts of lists tend to be.

    b) The piece you are critiquing was written and published almost three years ago; not that that’s a saving grace, just a bit of context — especially with regards to mobile computing.

    c) The focus of the author has actually been on creating new connections and more access to information, communication, and learning for both students and teachers. The author writes extensively on using the best of digital and face-to-face in education. The author really isn’t much of a tech evangelist; he teaches Latin.

    d) Shelly Blake-Plock is a male. A Google search might have confirmed that.

    e) Yes, tech produces all kinds of waste. Agreed. The more complex argument has to do with the “cost of the connection vs. the cost of no connection” — we could debate for hours on this. And I tend to think it would be useful to hear the different points of view.

    f) Regarding “intellectual casualties” and social networks; Isn’t this blog designed by Curren Media Group — a media group that specializes in online communication and social media campaigns?

    I encourage dialogue and hearty debate; maybe try getting in touch via Twitter and we could actually have a conversation about this and see more of the totality of one another’s views. I’m a parent too and like you I have a lot of concerns about sustainability especially on their behalf.

    best,
    Shelly

    @TeachPaperless

    • says

      Shelly (If this is you, I’m confused by the move between third and first person here),

      I’ve changed all the pronouns in the piece. I did examine your site for an about page, or bios, and there were none else I might have learned that you were a man. My apologies there.

      I wasn’t interested in reading 1,000 articles before I wrote my piece. I was interested in looking at the piece in question. As to it’s date, for whatever reason it was being tweeted the other day, that’s when I was exposed to it, and that’s why I wrote about it.

      It is true that Curren Media Group builds websites and works with social media. However, we are acutely aware that the Web is a huge energy suck and has its limitations and liabilities over time. Anyone working in this medium should keep that in the forefront of their minds and have a major plan b on deck for what to do if it goes down (for any number of reasons). Does that mean one closes up shop today? No. But getting lost in techno-fantasies about a more and more and more hyper connected communications and technology world is probably not a smart strategy for the future. If only there was an app for that!

      -L

  4. says

    “RE,
    The kids know a lot more than the system gives them credit for: especially how to lie to their parents and teachers. That’s really what we are teaching them with the modern system of systems.
    We need to stop giving them Hope and trophies and start giving them some useful work to do.”- AuntieGrav

    You won’t get an argument from me on the first part of this, kids know inherently the system is failing. The hopelessness creates a kind of nihilism, and that is why so many adolescents turn their bodies into Pincushions and Art Canvas.

    Giving them hope by finding useful work for them to do doesn’t seem likely, since as a society we aren’t even able to find enough useful work for the adults to do. Besides that, since there is a better than even chance they’ll be a casualty of a Civilization level Die-off within their lifetimes, without shining them on and painting a rosy picture of permaculture farms powered by Windmills and plows pulled by Skittle shitting Unicorns, its pretty tough to present a hopeful scenario here.

    RE

    • Auntiegrav says

      Ha ha. Yeah, I saw that cartoon also (skittle shitting unicorns). ;-)

      I think you got my point exactly right. It’s about REAL hope, not dreams of hope. Real hope is a matter of self-confident connection to one’s own future security.

      The only alternate thing that popped into my head was that when you said, “since as a society, we aren’t even able to find enough useful work for the adults to do”, I thought, “because we aren’t looking for useful things for them to do. It would involve questioning most of what we call “nationhood”, “freedom”, and “capitalism”.
      Everyone works under communism. They just don’t get paid. Are we REALLY concerned about people having useful jobs, or are we concerned about finding things for people to do that can be exploited by people who control the money and power, and that keep the people ignorant and busy?
      These are the questions that Obama didn’t bring up in his speech, and probably won’t come up.

  5. Surly 1 says

    Re Auntiegrav, I reacted to that comment as being more about the soccer-trophy mentality. By at least one study I saw cited recently, the US ranks 24th worldwide in math, 22nd in science, and #1 in “self esteem,” whatever the hell that is. Self esteem comes from the ability to actuallly make or do something worthwhile, useful or beautiful. These skills are not normally developed in warehouses or prisons, any more than are skills in critical thinking.

    I would agree as to the importance of Hope. But Hope would require a new set of stories, and in our current state we have no one to sing them, and certainly no leadership in either political party to implement them, unless they involve further public impoverishment on behalf of the upper one tenth of one percent.

    And as a useful metaphor for the unlikelihood of an 11-th hour technosave for the Happy Motoring lifestyle, RE’s image of “plows pulled by Skittle shitting Unicorns” is just perfect.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *


seven × = 49

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>