A brief commentary on the ineffectiveness of protests in today's world...

Let me begin by acknowledging protests played an important role in earlier times; especially during the Age of Broadcast Media in the 20th Century when protest images had big impacts on public awareness.
They were part of larger social movements engaging in structural policy interventions through alternative social models, new modes of political organization, adoption of new policy frameworks, and so forth.

This is NOT what protests achieve today.
Instead we have a fragmentary media environment filled with "memetic" tribes. Billions of dollars are spent every year on propaganda and misinformation campaigns that employ powerful insights from cognitive, behavioral, and social sciences, to confuse and distract populations.
Add that many social movements today do not prepare their citizens to take over democratic institutions and run them effectively. This insight is explored historically in @nordicbildung book "The Nordic Secret" for the French Revolution and lessons for education of people.
For example, @necsi conducted simulation studies of the Arab Spring protests (with 6-year followup analysis) showing that most "successful" uprisings led to later societal collapse:

Research on the cultural evolution of institutions shows that continuity of function is important, which implies that structural change is rare because it tends to "devolve" the society instead of improve it.
Where we ARE seeing progress is in the spread of permaculture practices, alternative communities, new models for schools that educate children, and growth of impact investing for regenerative projects.
Contrast these kinds of activities with the framing of protest that pits the powerless individual against some kind of state-based power that makes the rules. Protestors in effect are beggars asking those in power to change their ways.
I would much rather see empowered citizens exert their sovereignty by authoring their own lives, creating the social structures they need for the own communities, and engaging in active democratic practices.

This is anathema to protesting that presumes anti-democratic politics.
There are now millions of people actively creating regenerative models in practice and grounded in the real world. There is power in joining these efforts -- much more power than begging the plutocrats to exert their power in more friendly ways.

End of commentary.

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More from @cognitivepolicy

1 May
I've been asked to elaborate more by a few of you... so this thread will expand on what I've seen.

Firstly, let me say that I did watch the movie and that my FB feed has been filled with reviews, critiques, and commentaries by people I would generally call allies in all of this.
What I've seen is a handful of people who get what the film was about. These people already were "collapse aware" and knew that green energy is a superficial response to a deep relational crisis.

I'll let William Catton's 1980 book Overshoot stand in for their position.
The majority of responses were not this thoughtful. They were mostly defenses of heroes, claims of misinformation, rebuttals of specific facts while ignoring deeper arguments, and emotional responses of despair -- in various combinations depending on the people involved.
Read 10 tweets

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