Your Money Or Your Life?

Stupid Question, Or…?

Published on Countercurrents.org, by Clinton Callahan, 07 March, 2008.

How do you sleep at night knowing that you sell your child’s future for a phantom currency? What if you turned heretic against the religion of Profit, and redesigned your business so children could have hope?

There is one graphic in Al Gore’s film An Inconvenient Truth that should stop capitalism dead in its tracks. It shows a large balance with two trays. In one tray hangs planet earth. In the other tray hangs a stack of gold bars. The gold does not represent actual gold, which is only a metal that comes from the earth. The bars represent the concept of profit, Western culture’s religion – the alter upon which we are about to sacrifice our lives.

Thinking that it is reasonable to weigh the well-being of earth against corporate profits reveals the height of our psychopathic insanity. What value is profit if the planet has been sterilized of complex life forms by climate change? …


… For example, let’s say you manage a company that mines coal, the main fuel used to generate electric power. This week you could call an extraordinary board of directors meeting and admit together that you are no longer willing to dedicate your lives to liberating massive quantities of carbon dioxide into the atmosphere. You could decide that such a life is beneath your dignity. You could then change your corporate goals.

You could retrain your managers and your employees to use their intelligence, energy and equipment to rebuild towns from the ground up making them sustainable. Provide towns with geothermal and other alternative local power. Take them off the grid. Redesign towns around community meeting centers, gardens, bicycle and walking paths instead of around cars. Make driving unnecessary and food growing local, integrated into community life. Rebuild homes and buildings into passive houses, heated by solar and body heat alone. Recycle everything. Bring the town’s carbon footprint to zero. Can you feel the difference from serving this new purpose? Would it be something to get out of bed in the morning to accomplish? Could you do this? (full text).

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