Monday, 1 April 2013

The Great Benevolent Dictator

I read another interview with a big shot saying, ‘There’s nothing we can do’ about our spectacular slide down the other side of the peak oil curve and all the co-mingling issues of global warming, financial crises, food shortages, species extinctions etc. I’ll call it the Great Decline for ease of handling.
 
But if you’re anything like me, you’re sick of hearing the doomsayers, the naysayers, the hopelessness, so here’s an opportunity for optimism, a bit of pie in the sky as you are newly anointed as benevolent dictators of the world. I’ll go first and take the juiciest pieces of pie…
 
When I am welcomed wholeheartedly as the Great Benevolent Dictator to deal with the Great Decline I will implement a number of key changes …
 
Renewable energy projects and research will be given all the subsidies now given to unsustainable industries such as mining, oil and traditional automotive with a target of 100% conversion to renewable energy worldwide by 2020. (this will include tough energy conservation measures on a domestic and industry level).
 
Organic agriculture will become the norm, with support and incentives provided to farmers in conversion. Farmers will be valued and financial rewards will follow. Food will no longer be the high flyers or long distance travellers,  unless they are light, unperishables like spices, eg, tons of cloves, cinnamon, etc will go a long way and help assist those countries that need the income and without significant strain on the system, but gone are the days where you will expect to eat US oranges out of season in Tasmania.
 
A drastic capping of income for non-productive jobs such as executives and bureaucrats,  and a reduction in the number of people employed in these types of positions. Instead there will be a  return to a system that values those who produce, eg research and development and finding key ways forward, not rewarding sociopathic tendencies and the ability to lay off half the work force in order to increase the profits of stakeholders.
 
Whoa, that was big, take a breath, my pulse, and plough back into the thick of it…
 
Everyone is given a yearly fuel allowance for personal vehicle use, flying etc. Public transport does not count as part of your allowance.  If you don’t use your allowance you can trade it.  People living in developing countries that don’t use their allowance can trade them internationally. But people will be encouraged to use various strategies to reduce their use, eg carpooling, public transport, living close to where you work, working from home etc.
 
Built in obsolescence is considered to mirror the built in obsolescence of our world system and it becomes a thing of the past. This includes the belief that any item can be one use only, from drink bottles to computer systems,  there is no such thing as non-recyclable and everything is produced with the materials reclamation in mind. Companies that produce items such as laptops that will last and for which replaceable parts and upgrades will be available for at least a decade if not longer (yes, the cost of a laptop will be more than a couple of hundred dollars, but it will be cheaper in the long run).
 
OK, if I haven’t already started the war to end all wars and I haven’t had to put my head through the little window or stand blindfolded against a wall, then I will…
 
Give our system of politics a radical overhaul, it is no longer an ad hominem, adversarial screaming match full of bloated egos seeking to undermine change, particularly if it has any hope of actually succeeding, but instead it’s…. Oh, yeah, you’re right, now I’m really dreaming.
 
OK, I took the juiciest, easiest to reach pieces of pie, lots of room for a bit of tweaking. Obviously in 500 words I can't provide enough details to offset the obvious responses such as.. yes, but what about if people abuse and corrupt the system.. you do what you can to offset it, it's an issue in the world we live in too.
 
It’s a big pie, so what, in 500 words or less, is your plan once you're anointed The Great Benevolent World Dictator? Trev’s plan is to feel overwhelmed by the position, instantly resign and ask for a redundancy package.
 
 
 

5 comments:

Linda Cockburn said...

http://www.guardian.co.uk/commentisfree/2013/apr/01/alternative-to-war-on-britains-poor

George Monbiot's take on what could replace our defunct system. At least in part, that is the social rather than environmental side of life.

dweeze (Johnno) said...

My solution is to prostrate myself at your wise dictator feet and spend the rest of my time educating the un-enlightened with a big stick.

Linda Cockburn said...

Definitely getting scary there Dweeze. Wasn't it Roosevelt who said, 'speak quietly and carry a big stick'?

No such thing as a bloodless revolution or a benevolent dictator I guess, they're oxymoron's. Oh well.

I still think we need to dream a different dream, and in order to get there we need to know what it looks like.

damnthematrix said...

Being one of the doomers you've been reading, my comment is "no comment"....!!

Somerled_1 said...

I really believe in, and practice reusing, re-purposing, recycling, save energy, go renewables and think global, act local. Costa's Garden Odyssey on SBS talked about the Backyard revolution, and that's something I'd like to see , to whatever scale is possible, in every house and Unit , expecially in social housing. I believe all the elements we need to make the changes real are already here, there's no need to re-invent the wheel, nations need the political will, and to operate outside of the mantra economic-rationalism, to make this work.