RE: FYI: MEDIA & Greenpeace

Crosby_M (
Thu, 5 Dec 1996 11:41:37 -0500

On Tue, 3 Dec 1996, Kathryn Aegis wrote:
<As an example of the kind of thinking that is becoming prevalent, I submit
Kirkpatrick Sale's explanation as to why your home PC is an ecological
disaster area and an affront to human rights>

A week or two ago, when the list was down, I posted something about the new
Electric Minds ( forum. It's in the list archives but
probably didn't make it through in email. What I noted was that alot of
the participants there seemed to be posting these same antitechnology
views. Many of them were rehashing Lewis Mumford's work (_The Myth of the
Machine_) from decades ago.

Kirkpatrick Sale wrote:
<computers interpose and mediate between the human and natural world more
completely than any other technology--they are uniquely capable of
reproducing another nature through biotechnology and many virtual ones--and
are the instruments that primarily energize the technosphere that not
merely distances this civilization from nature but sets it at war with
nature for its daily sustenance.>

And Anders Sandberg critiqued:
<This is IMHO the rethorical core of his argument, and it is interesting.
The first part is essentially about values: do we want to live in the
natural world or in the technological (cultural) world? He sees the choice
as obvious, and I suppose many of his readers do too, because nature has
become a very positive word today.>

These people (Greenpeaceniks) might do well to read Alexander Chislenko's
essay at which argues
that we've been 'cyborgs' ever since we picked up our first tool. If their
nature-worship arguments are followed to their logical conclusion you
arrive at what Hal Dunn first posted about last Saturday (961230):

<You might find this amusing. I stumbled across the Web site for the
Voluntary Human Extinction Movement.
[snip] VHEMT wants to end all human breeding so that the human race
eventually becomes extinct in order to save the earth.>

BTW, David Brin's latest novels (recently finished the brand-new
_Infinity's Shore_, second book in a trilogy) explores this mentality as
embodied in a religion that sees the Path of Redemption to be a return to

A few years back, some similar folks (claiming to be serious scientists)
proposed putting most of the middle portions of North America (from the
Rocky Mountains through parts of the Great Plains) off limits to humans so
that wildlife could recover.

I call these people Green Fascists. As Eugene Leitl also put it:
<an oecofashistoid regime I hope we'll never get.>
Their primary theoretician, of course, is Jeremy Rifkin.

As Max More recently put it:
<All forms of religious fundamentalism are antithetical towards science.>
IMO, there is a serious threat of these Green Fascists linking up with
religious fundamentalists to try and prohibit further technological
advances. My hope is that there are enough democratic and technical
networks in place that these people would be quickly isolated if they ever
came to power. My fear is that a Green Goo is all too easy to spread!

Mark Crosby

"Supple and turbulent, a ring of men, shall chant in orgy on a summer morn,
their glorious devotion to the Sun, not as a God, but as a God might be,
naked among them like a savage source." - Wallace Stevens