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Salton Sea Beach (0744)

Salton Sea Beach (0744)
"In a society that has abolished every kind of adventure, the only adventure that remains is to abolish the society." Graffiti inside abandoned home in adjacent picture. From expedition on Thanksgiving day, 2013.

Kostas Papantoniou, * Boes René *, Christina Sonnenschein, Rhisiart Hincks have particularly liked this photo


9 comments - The latest ones
James Ruddy
James Ruddy
Sounds like my wife's job at the store. And the bad thing about this is....I'm not joking this time.
3 years ago.
Don Barrett (aka DBs… has replied to James Ruddy
It's what work has become for far too many people, and unfortunately there aren't many options for finding more meaningful work.
3 years ago.
James Ruddy
James Ruddy
Yes, I think a lot of it has to do with the view of people being resources...like a chair, or a piece of equipment, that you can use when you need it and dispose of it when you're through with it. Many people have the economic power to lord it over too many others without a care of them as being human beings with value and worth beyond what they can get out of them. And there's no escaping it like there once was. I had a supervisor a few years back that told me, when I complained about something, that no one was forcing me to stay there and I was free to leave at any time I choose. I told her she was only partially right, and that I could just walk out the door and she couldn't do a thing about it, but that wasn't the true reality of anyone's position including her's. We all have to live someplace, wear clothing, eat, and all that requires us to have a source of income. We have to pay our bills to survive, so we can't, in any practical or reasonable sense, just get mad and quit whenever we feel like it. We are bound tightly in an economic system with so many people, so many rules and regulations, and there's no real way, unless we don't mind living as homeless people under the bridge, that we can simply walk out on our own and do something else. It's not like we can just load up our shit on a covered wagon and go off to Oregon to homestead on our own. Those days are gone and we're basically economic slaves, and we're tied to our jobs by all of this. I'll have to give her credit for thinking about it, because the next day she called me into her office and said that she never looked at it that way and I was right. Even so, things didn't change.
3 years ago.
Don Barrett (aka DBs… has replied to James Ruddy
Hmm, sounds similar to my variation on Marxist analysis...

(I'll have to admit, 'vagabond' or 'hobo,' 'reject the system' sounds attractive sometimes.)
3 years ago.
James Ruddy
James Ruddy
Yes, and interesting topic in it's own right. The problem, as I see it with Marxist theory, is when it's put into practice. It never works because it leaves out the basic human nature factor, and invariably shifts from one caste system into another. Like in Russia, what did they really do there; exchanged a Tzar for a Party Secretary, the Boyars for the Supreme Soviet, the peasants became the "workers." The eagle transformed into the hammer and cycle...on and on. The symbols changed, but the substance remained the same. Like someone changing clothes, then claiming to be somebody else.

I don't believe the basic problem, the root cause, has anything to do with big business, big government, management or mismanagement, at all. I think it is simply a matter of numbers. The cloying masses press in on each other and make us interdependent. We can cast blame in a thousand direction and find fault. We can redistribute as many material items as we want. But in the ultimate reality...nothing will change except symbolism. Only symbolic changes will occur no matter how hard you try to fix the unfixable. This is the product of civilization, of a great number of people forced together in any confined geographical area, not matter how large the area may itself be. I've often heard that a communist system will work by people who liked to use Indian tribes as a model of proof. And while the old plains Indian tribes is a perfect analogy of how a communist system ideally works, it is a flawed analogy because it leaves out a major factor. People in a small tribal group naturally share all they have with each other and it's easy to use simple peer pressure for those who don't comply with the threat of expulsion from the group, which would be akin to a death sentence for an individual expelled from it. Chiefs were elected by the masses, but they were not rulers. If the people thought they were making poor choices they didn't have a recall vote, they simply didn't listen to them anymore and ignored them. If a number of people became uncomfortable, they would simply form their own band and go off on their own. The reason they could do this was because there was land available to move off to, and resources available for them to continue their existence on their own. It was a practical system because there were few people and lots of land with resources. But in our present world, we simply don't have this. No agricultural people had any system like that of the hunter gather people, not for long anyway, because they were sedentary and this always leads to stratification, not equality, in a social system. This is actually very easily testable.

Take a house, any house, and put two people in it. They have plenty of space, they can go from room to room if they want. They will share meals, take turns in the bathroom or with the TV channels, and not have too much difficulty with each other, and if so, they can always retire to another part of the house, maybe the basement or garage to work on a project or go sit somewhere and quietly read a book and take a nap if they wish. But start adding people to the house and see what happens, like a large party, or family reunion, and watch what happens. Someone takes charge of everyone and tells them when to sit and eat, people are fighting over the TV channel...some want to watch the big game and win out, while those who wanted to watch a movie wander off angry. They start fighting over petty things and argue. One wants to get away from someone and just be alone and heads to the bedroom, but it's full of people sitting on the bed playing a card game, and you can't get in the bathroom because there's a line waiting to use it and they don't care if you have to go bad either and won't let you cut in line. There was desert, with your favorite ice cream, but some pig got more than their fair share so you didn't get any! You are angry and want to escape, you've had enough, but any door you go through has another room full of people, they are everywhere and you don't have any choice but to put up with them. You need to make alliances to get the TV back, jostle for position to make sure you get your ice cream, and this time you're going to make sure you get all you want and screw the rest of them! Sometimes you think, "I'd sure like to get out of here! I'd sure like to leave and find another house." but you can't. There are no other houses, only this one, and you're stuck in it. It used to be a nice comfortable home, but not any more. It's too crowded, too many people who get on your nerves, and there's nothing you can do about it...that's just the way it is. We used to love them, enjoy their company, but now we hate each other, there's no privacy, no breathing space, and you can't do anything without bumping into someone else who will keep you trapped, and won't allow you to move about freely. And, THEY WON'T LEAVE YOU ALONE, not for a second. It don't matter what you want, it's what they want that counts, and they will make you dance to their tunes no matter how loony the tunes they play are.

This microcosm is what the world is like, but on a larger scale. This is why I'm not overly concerned with any social causes. My prime concern in life is very simple. My personal liberty. I don't want to deny it to any other and have a live and let live view which, unfortunately, isn't shared by others. And I don't define personal liberty so much in the way of being above anyone, being the king of my castle...nothing like that at all, though that would be a byproduct of it. It is simply having the right to be left alone. The right to mind my own business without outsiders interfering with me, as long as I cause no harm to others, of course. I have been fairly successful in this for the most part, and only want to continue in this manner.

Being a hobo sounds attractive, and once I might have been able to survive in that way, but healthwise it's not practical for me now. To quote Dirt Harry, "A man's just got to know his limitations."
3 years ago.
Don Barrett (aka DBs travels)
Don Barrett (aka DBs…
Overall I agree with most of the analysis, that sizes of population are a key factor. That, though, still leaves a large role for government. One of the best ways to insure a reasonable population size is to insure that women have the opportunity to live their own lives independently. Women's liberation is one of the best means of birth control. Secondly, men, when their standard of living rises and they're able to find meaning in their work, are more likely to also want small families. So, if we don't want to be overtaken by clamoring masses, we need a structure that provides opportunity (to all, not just to the wealthy) so that birth rates will go down.
3 years ago.
James Ruddy
James Ruddy
Yes, small families are more to my liking too. I grew up in a large one and we were always fighting over petty things. Of course, it's more human like to just make war to control population growth than it is to try and create a more meaningful existence for all. While your ideals are more noble, it seems history is against them.
3 years ago.
Don Barrett (aka DBs… has replied to James Ruddy
Better to try for the ideal than to give in.
3 years ago.
James Ruddy
James Ruddy
Life's too short to struggle against reality for me. I think I'll just continue with my avoidance techniques and mind my own business...if possible. I may help and individual here and there if opportunity arises, but nothing on any grand scale.
3 years ago.