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« When Paul Krugman was Naïve | Main | Be careful while hiking in the woods! »

July 05, 2010


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Phil Henshaw

To offer the story a somewhat more hopeful end would be good. Simply throwing up the proverbial hands and hoping for an imaginary chaotic attractor of some sort to save us isn't much to go on is it?

The physical steering options for net energy systems come from what choices are made for the use of the net energy... of course, though for the life of me I've struggle for decades to get other scientists to realize that natural systems actually exist as physical energy management systems, and closely watching how they work opens up a range of first rate approaches to steering what they do with their net surpluses.

I'm just exhausted by my whole denialist community of thinkers who seem to say, "nope, that can't be it" as if the whole of science wasn't built on finding just a very few little things you can know for sure, exhibiting how nature makes impossibly complex things work simply.

Gary Peters

So long as President Obama's economic advisors include Larry Summers and Tim Geithner, we can expect bad decisions. When he was head of the World Bank back in the 1990s Summers stated, and most neoclassical economists accept, that the carrying capacity of Earth is unlimited. Thus, the president will continue to talk about "growing the economy" until hell freezes over. In the meantime it seems that Steve Chu has been muted and marginalized, probably because he disagrees with the potential for returning back to "normal" growth given today's energy outlook, especially for oil.

George Mobus


If the story you refer to is mine, then I can only say that the hope I offer is to those who know how to see it themselves.

As for the struggle you mention (and we discussed this a bit in Syracuse as I recall) that is exactly why I take this position. I have always noticed that when I have been struggling with some problem solving activity it was because I was either trying to solve the wrong problem or trying to solve an insoluble problem (like finding an efficient algorithm for solving the N-city traveling salesman problem). Standing back and asking myself if I had the nature of the problem right allowed me to see a way forward, not necessarily in the direction I thought I should go originally, but to a way that turned out productive.

For what that $0.02 was worth.


George Mobus


You are far more generous to Mr. Obama than I am at present! I think he made the decision to have Summers and Geithner (perhaps egged on by Wall Streeters) in the first place. Ergo, just because they might be gone doesn't mean he will start making wise decisions. Or, perhaps I'm reading more intent into your statement than warranted. Apologies if so.

Chu hasn't exactly polished his image with his continuing support for carbon capture and storage for 'clean coal'.

Frankly, I think the time for wise decisions is long past.


Matthew Watkinson

I still don't see anything wrong or abnormal about any of this. In nature, opportunities are seized when they become available (i.e. the energy available from fossil fuels), competition leads to increasing efficiency and utilisation through specialisation and inter-dependency (the economy), inefficency is reduced to a minimum to create a mature ecosystem (the modern economy) that has no reserve capacity (just in time deliveries etc.) and thus is extremely susceptible to change, and then change (peak oil) precipitates a collapse (as discussed above) which releases all the energy stored in the system to create a brand new opportunity (not necessarily suited to those who utilised the previous opportunity). This is the cycle of all nature:

“The bewildering, entrancing, unpredictable nature of nature and people, the richness, diversity and changeability of life come from that evolutionary dance generated by cycles of growth, collapse, reorganization, renewal and re-establishment. We call that the adaptive cycle.” Buzz Holling

Collapse, just like death, is an inevitable part of the war of escalating complexity (evolution).

Kind regards,


Gary Peters

Hi George,

My main points in my comment were that with current advisors Obama is going to do little that is useful AND by noting Summers and his ridiculous statement about Earth's unlimited carrying capacity, which underlies neoclassical economics and bodes nothing but ill for our future. My own interest leans more toward the demographic, as can be seen in the short piece on the Oil Drum. If you have time and inclination, maybe you could look at it.

I don't disagree that it is probably too late for Obama to make some good decisions but I guess I don't want to give in yet to complete hopelessness. If we cannot get across to people a better sense of the ecological rather than economic view of the world, then it seems to me we will go headlong over a cliff.

George Mobus

Hi Matthew,

I still don't see anything wrong or abnormal about any of this.

Couldn't agree more. I didn't mean to imply that anything that is happening is outside of nature in any sense. My role is just to observe, interpret, and report.

The hitch is that I do the reporting to the subjects of nature's ways, and in this case, they are the recipients of not such good news.

And this is why I put my money on evolution in the broad sense.


George Mobus

Hi Gary.

I did read the piece in TOD. Very good. Generated quite a few comments so we can see this is an issue that has been festering for a while. I have always thought the population overshoot was one of the two main pieces of evidence that humans had not yet reached a level of true sapience (the other was reliance on religious or ideological beliefs when trying to explain how the world works).

...but I guess I don't want to give in yet to complete hopelessness.

Indeed none of us should. But it depends on what the hope is for. If the hope is to somehow get everyone on board with understanding, and hence doing something that will save the bulk of humanity, then I think that is a false hope. It is the wrong problem to try and solve. And the situation with the leadership of the US is just more evidence that it is the case.

My hope revolves around raising the awareness of what is feasible to those who are capable of understanding such that they will figure it out and take appropriate actions to survive the bottleneck. As noted to Matthew, above, I consider this as just part of evolution and we are subjects to all the rules of nature. Which means that if you overshoot the carrying capacity, you pay the consequences.

My hope is that the sapient will inherit the Earth!


Gary Peters

Hi George,

I'm honored that you found my TOD piece worth reading. Population growth is part of a larger Ponzi scheme that we could just label "growthmania," a term suggested long ago by Edward Abbey.

It would be nice if the sapients would inherit the human niches that remain on Earth once the real devastation of economic collapse and global warming run their courses.

It seems to me that population growth is both cause and effect. On the one hand it is an effect of the considerable and rapid use of fossil fuels over the last two hundred years or more, reflecting at least temporary increases in food supply. It is also a cause as larger numbers of humans generate a growing demand for food and other resources. There is a tendendancy today to ignore population growth because it is occurring mostly in the poor countries, even though those countries are losing emigrants who are heading to the rich countries. Population growth in most Muslim countries is leading to ever larger concentrations of young people, mostly uneducated and jobless, who will be the Jihadists of the future.

I agree that population numbers today are well beyond what Earth can support, so we are in overshoot.



“…grow up and no longer believe in fairy tales.” – That is my main concern these days. How do we facilitate this awakening?

In the comments on one of your posts ( ) you said “the word construct implies construction which might imply conscious engineering.” I was actually referring to Constructivism ( ) which is concerned with the creation of an individual’s map of the world. It has been constructed in the sense that it is not inherently true unto itself, but instead created over time by the experiences of the individual.

In another set of comments under one of your posts ( ) you mention the idea of a self-unfolding code that unwraps the knowledge of the universe, instead of learning individual ideas transferred one-dimensionally as memes from one generation to the next. Frankly I think that this idea is the most brilliant idea you’ve had, bar none.

So much of the reality tunnel ( ) that people lacking in sapience are trapped in is constructed based on our current memes. For instance, when someone says that the “sun is setting.” Is the sun really going somewhere? Obviously, it’s going through the galaxy at a high rate of speed, but it’s simply the human perception that the sun is moving while the earth is standing still. This holdover from the days before Copernicus remains with us.

This is the same way that most people talk about gravity, in the Newton sense of the idea, never knowing about the curvature of spacetime. Understanding Newton’s universe is good enough to get them through the day.

What I see missing from the discussion of the reality tunnel or the world view ( ) is the resistance of these world views to change. There is a natural continuity in the minds of individuals, an inertia that maintains the current world view, something akin to the Psychological Immune System ( ). There is an oft-occurring immunity to change which limits an individual’s ability or desire to question their world view.

In one set of comments ( ) you state that you have confirmation of people questioning the dominant paradigm. I’m interested in how we speed this up. How do we create acceleration of the number of people able to question their own reality tunnel?

The Wikipedia article on reality tunnels says that this awakening “…is achieved through various processes of deprogramming using neuro-linguistic programming, cybernetics, hypnosis, biofeedback devices, meditation, controlled use of hallucinogens, and forcibly acting out other reality tunnels.” My question is how can we accelerate the acceptance of the best of these tools for the use of everyone? How can these become popular to the extent that a majority of people on this planet question their current paradigm and advance towards sapience?

For me, it was neuro-linguistic programming and dabbling in self-directed amateur meditation. And it took years. My wife has no interest whatsoever in questioning her current paradigm, and is quite happy in her current reality tunnel. Nothing that I say or try to give examples of will convince her that she should expand her world view. I think about methods of persuasion ( ) and would enjoy it if this sort of awakening could go viral and get a million “likes” on Facebook, but I don’t know how to get us there.

It might not be possible with our current propped-up fairy tales. The illusion of prosperity appears to prohibit most people from considering this line of questioning. It will probably require a more severe dip on the short decline downward for people’s attention to be arrested to reality. Then, perhaps during the next bump we can awaken more people to the situation, and they can scramble like hell to secure sapience and wrap-up the knowledge of the world in a self-unfolding code for those that survive the next upcoming dip. After several dips, the world will have saved some sapient portion of the population, everyone still living will have passed the awakening stage and at least started down the path of sapience, and enough knowledge will have been wrapped up in the code for future generations to rebuild slowly in a low-energy steady-state society to create the University of Noesis and produce a better future.

For me, the future of the species will depend on our ability to facilitate the awakening of enough world views to survive the wars that will be waged by the idealogues.


Thinking about this further, I realized that I let religion and ideology off the hook, basically blaming an individual for their own resistance to change. I did not intend this, as I define culture by the maintenance of the status quo that provides the inertia to resist change.

Many people today have a fear of fundamentalism, but feel that moderate religious beliefs are benign. Ideology, religion, fundamentalism, and even the straw man this is scientism, are the most effective creators of reality construct inertia. Questioning everything constantly is the only cure. It thus creates a state of constant change in velocity. Permanent change.

However, that is an individual’s own personal journey. Where is the empathic translation of change to others? I speak specifically of my daily polite fictions ( ). While I thoroughly engage all of this blog commentary with true conviction, I politely leave it out of everyday conversations. When I talk about the subjects of this blog with others, I speak of it as an interest of mine, and interesting ideas to think about, but I do not in any way attempt to disenchant them of their reality tunnel.

The best quote I know to represent this is part of the headline of the New York Times after Einstein’s general theory of relativity had been proven: “Stars Not Where They Seemed or Were Calculated to Be, but Nobody Need Worry.” It’s the “nobody need worry” part that provides the comfort and negates the concomitant news that everyone’s view of the universe was wrong. So your understanding of the universe is incorrect, but so what? It’ll be OK.

The best example I’ve witnessed of the effect of the impolite intrusion of fictions on another person’s reality was when discussing people who have died and their status as angels. Common culture, as enabled by books and movies, states that people can become angels after their death. It is comforting to some people to believe that the loved one who has recently died is now following them as a guardian angel. In the example I witnessed, a devout Christian would not let this inaccuracy stand, and informed the grieving person that according to the Bible the deceased was not an angel and could not be an angel, as all angels were created by God prior to the creation of man. This in no way comforted the griever, but the devout person felt justified in defending the correct dogma.

In everyday life, attempts to disenchant people of their religion are met with outright anger and sometimes violence. If you were to correct someone and say that the sun is not setting, but that the earth is rotating so that people located in our longitude will shortly be out of sight of the sun, they would dismiss you as a fop. If you were attempt to explain to someone that puppies have no souls, but that neither do humans, you would be written off as crazy.

So I walk through my day, watching people make decisions with less-than-helpful maps of the world, and I continue walking. It’s Somebody Else’s Problem ( ). Who am I to try to intrude upon their reality tunnel? I’m just a bystander ( ). It’s the general diffusion of responsibility ( ) that we as a group who realize the presence of reality tunnels can all hide behind if questioned as to why we don’t do more to awaken our fellow humans.

I’m not an elected leader, and one might assume that an elected leader would bear the responsibility of this sort of awakening. Except that since the leader is elected by those who have not awaked from their reality tunnel, they elect someone who has not awaked from his own reality tunnel, and he can therefore not take on the responsibility himself.

What we’re missing is some sort of social intervention. In situations where an individual is unaware of their own addiction and their inability to control it themselves, their friends and loved ones will perform an intervention ( ). And therapists will make use of cognitive interventions ( ) and rational emotive behavior therapy ( ) to awaken individuals, and move the locus of control ( ) to an internal position, enabling them to begin active engagement in the creation of their world view.

We need some sort of social intervention. Education seems like a candidate, but not the current state of education. Systems science and learner-centered learning might work to produce people capable of sapient thinking, but getting society to adopt this approach is its own wicked problem.

If a group of sapient individuals were to band together and attempt to perform an intervention on someone to bust open their reality tunnel, the human mind would be limited to the amount of change it is capable of creating within itself in a short period of time.

So between the full long-term change of creating a University of Noesis to begin with the appropriate precursors to sapience, and a short-term but ineffective attempt at a reality tunnel intervention, what tools does the average bystander have at their disposal for acting locally?

What can an individual do to effect change in those around them? What would be the sapience equivalent of an evangelical? Could someone knock on doors and ask, “Pardon me, but have you accepted that your worldview is incomplete into your heart? Have you heard the word of the awakened?”

Obviously, this is all very silly. Or maybe it isn’t. Maybe I’m stuck in bystander mode, unwilling to challenge my own assumptions about people’s ability to absorb the news that their reality tunnel is inadequate.

George Mobus


The honor is mine sincerely.

I have come to the conclusion that the population problem, like global warming, peak oil, etc. will only resolve in nature's way. Like the foxes that grew beyond the normal carrying capacity when hares were abundant, we will simply crash when the fossil fuels become too expensive to extract and we have made no provisions for alternatives sufficient to salvage a large percentage of the population. That is just the way it is.

But, if the more highly sapient among us recognize this and prepare, there could very well still be a bright future for Homo.

Keep the stimulating thoughts coming.


George Mobus


You really have shown a wonderful grasp of the issues! Thank you for being perceptive and supportive. I appreciate criticism as well, of course. But having a kindred spirit weigh in on these matters is heartening.

That is my main concern these days. How do we facilitate this awakening?

My question is: Who do you wish to awaken? My own perception, and you are a wonderful example of this, is that there is already an awakening. But it is limited to those who already understand it!

As for intervention, I have several years of attempts to open eyes. My experience has been that those who are already primed to understand do so. I have a number of students who have shown the understanding and are working in a variety of ways to prepare for the inevitable. But there are so many others who literally refuse to see.

There is another way to look at this. The earth is overcrowded with our species now. So much so that it will probably require many centuries of lying fallow (most of it) just to recover its biological health. All those who refuse to see are the ones draining the life out of her soils, oceans, lakes and air. Perhaps this is right that intervention will not work for the majority. And it is needed only minimally in those who could contribute positively to the next cycle of evolutionary radiation.

It is trite, but the old saying about leading a horse to water...

PS. As I have a habit to question my own beliefs, I am working with several groups to offer education to whoever will listen. I was surprised by the reception I got at the Institute for the Future 10 Year Forecast, so who knows. I just keep testing my prior assumptions. If I see an inkling of hope for intervention, I will post it here ASAP!


Townplann3r (and George) Thanks for that! Very literate summary of your feelings. Its a difficult one, pursuasion.
My experience of forum discussion and everyday experience (with very intelligent people I hasten to add) has led me to certain conclusions and a set of observations a mini theses is you like;

People would much rather argue than learn.

People would much rather believe than know.

No-one is completely free of ideological leanings.

People invest considerable mental energy in defending a stance, even if that stance is demonstrably irrational.

Personal vested interests remain a huge (sometimes the only) influence on opinion.

The vast majority have the existential imagination of a wildebeest supping muddy water at a crocodile infested waterhole.

Pardon the last levity!

This is my long considered view The majority will never undergo any kind of voluntary transformation to a more sane and sustainable way of life and thinking it will only happen by enforcement or coertion...that is not cynicism or fatalism its the way thing are.
Only a small minority of people are capable of voluntary change or transistion to a new mode of living.

What is required for a mass sea change is some kind of new secular religion or mythology which agrees with scientific and anthropological findings of the age. A quasi-religious way of participation which can encompass art and music in seeing humanity as part of the ongoing process of self-revelation of the universe; immersion rather than separation with nature and the planet. (Joel primack based a book on this idea as George knows).
Fine sentiments you may agree with... how or indeed if this can be achieved is another matter.



What is required for a mass sea change is some kind of new secular religion or mythology which agrees with scientific and anthropological findings of the age. (...) immersion rather than separation with nature and the planet.

That's what I'm sometimes thinking, too. But just some new "religion" alone won't do. Incentives are needed. I guess you've seen my suggestion of an "epireligious quasimonastic order" from last year: . Good enjoyable life there would be the incentive (or at least some food scurity). But I still have not much idea about the spiritual part and how to make sure it does not degenerate into narrow minding, madness, etc.? Actually methinks an explicit "Gaian religion" shouldn't be necessary. Things are self-evident enough... But then, a quasireligious framework could serve a memetic vehicle to ensure the Order survives the bottleneck. This I see as its ultimate purpose: To pass on to the survivors some proto-sapience and a tool (agricultural carbon sequestration) to repair the biosphere.


Good questions.... The idea of a "mass sea change of some kind", a religion that's not a religion..."immersion rather than separation with nature" is something that could be curiously hidden in plain sight.

It might be a matter of becoming part of nature's intelligence as a physical act, as a way to overcome our flawed mental constructs of how nature works. Immersion seems to help, but is easily derailed by the our habit of converting the physical subjects studied into theories, and so loosing sight of the originals. That only seems avoided by leaving your theories incomplete, and finding a way to retain the questions you wouldn't have had time to explore, the openings to unexplored paths in the road map.

You see the other solutions to the growth problem demonstrated all the time that way. They're in the deep mystery of the natural systems that grow explosively to a point at which they change form, and mature to perfection instead of ripping themselves to pieces or disrupting and depleting their environments. The catch is not that how they do it can't be studied well enough to imitate. It's needing to keep the open questions as you go, and getting lost if you strip them away to make things more explicable. If you can maintain your contact with and curiosity about the physical subjects themselves in that way, not reducing them to images, one can watch where the net energy goes that gives natural systems their self-steering capability.

You'd need to find a community of people curious about the possibility of looking to the physical world for the "true religion" and for not finding it in just a more ethereal images. You could say it's in "the unending meditation" of "being here" if that softens the jolt a bit. It seems to involve separating our information and cultural realities from the independent realities of their physical subjects, in order to fully enjoy the richness of useful questions nature's physical intelligence raises, and to give our rich mental experience a more reliable connection.

That double step of separating our mental realities from our physical ones, leading to a better way to connect them, makes most everyone I know turn and run, though... That's a bit of a problem. It's the subject I write about though, and find a minute growing audience for.


I agree with most of your post…I was a little clumsy in my description, It was not a prescription or solution to avert inevitable events-more a idea to sustain a new vision among the survivors, a cohesive force. Like you say things are self-evident enough but our narrow torch beam of conscious attention our analytical descriptions, the limitations of representational language mean that they are utterly inadequate in conveying the epic tragedy of our ecocidal destruction.
They are also inadequate in conveying (and inspiring) the intensity, complexity and ecstasy of being human and becoming part of the universe’s self awareness. Artists, musician’s, poets, the religious storytellers have always sensed this…. and all have a part in inspiring and directing a new society that takes self-awareness and complexity to a new level.
Another aspect is embedding wisdom, complexity and morality in mythology stories and religions is that they are infinitely more robust over time than the empheral teachings of contemporary ideologies- how many of us believe the internet will survive a crash?!
Storyteller consciousness, books, word of mouth, songs, poems and fairy tales can survive and inspire with modification, generations to come. It is this idea of unity of scientific revelations with artistic instincts, ritual and talent for communication beyond language ( aided by technology-potential for mass transfer if necessary) that really interest me.
Shouldaknown- interesting links- I wish I had more time…..
Briefly; humans should use their talents and technology to explore and participate in natures self-revelation not dominate control and subjugate nature…any programme of control is ultimately doomed.


it seems you've got a new reader. (Alas I'm quite busy these days. Plus, your writing often seems hard to decipher. Perhaps it's because I'm German. Perhaps you should use more brackets to structure your sentences :-) ) ...

separating our mental realities from our physical ones, leading to a better way to connect them
Bingo! You seem to have the clue for my problem with a right "scientific religion":
to recognize the difference between cultural and physical reality
It will take some time until I fully read your "Model Learning Change Paper". Perhaps you can offer (link to) some crisp description of that 2nd scientific method you suggest for raising good new questions? Any reading list for the impatient?


The "immersion" practised in the "epireligious order" I suggest would of course be agriculture.

An example of how things go wrong is perhaps anthroposophic agriculture: I know 2 such farmers. What they do is great - it is perhaps the most immersed of organic farming. But my friends think they are perfect. And Steiner's metaphysic mumbo jumbo blocks them from fully appreciating what is at stake with us and the Gaia system: For them it is just material - and if we f*ck it up then "spirit" will find other matter to inhabit on some other planet...

But I've also met quite encouraging farming /gardening /permaculture folks at a roundtable last weekend. Far from being scientific characters they nevertheless showed superior systems thinking & questioning skills. Of course farmers do note climate change first hand (and in Germany they start preparing for worse), but it is also their immersion in natural systems that seems to be a great training of wisdom.

Of course that's too small a sample to draw any concclusions...

George, sorry for drifting off thread topic...
I'll be more quiet for the rest of this summer (having lots to read, write and folks to meet).

Alexander Carpenter

Please be as astute about the energy processes in climate change as you are with the energy processes in our civilization. Those "heat forcings" are solar and have next to nothing to do with CO2 or human activity.

Please be astute about the difference between Positivist "science" (including modeling) and real science (falsifiable hypotheses).

Please distinguish anthropogenic global warming (AGW) from natural cyclic climate change. The former is a political and economic maneuver (and religion-like cult), the latter is a fact of planetary history.

If you were as astute about climate change as you are about social energy processes, you could (and would) drop out the whole AGW part of the conversation and emerge with the same descriptions, recommendations, and forecasts you have now.

In a way, the whole AGW conversation is a political (i.e., economic) distraction that tends to subvert the credibility of the probity and wisdom of your main insights and perspective.

In that way, the AGW conversation is analogous to the Pollyanna "recovery" and "growth" talk that you skewer so well. It is a subset of the "belief system" that disempowers us all while empowering concentration of wealth and power in what can only be the wrong hands (given what they have done with it so far).

Anyway, many thanks for your valuable analyses which are only slightly undermined by reference to the AGW cult. It may be that it's time for the really difficult part of this conversation - the what-to-do and how-to-do-it parts.

Now there's a challenge that must met in parallel with the rational-discourse de-conditioning part that you are doing so well. Lots of general disruption and pain will advance any genuine learnings and any significant individual and collective (harder!) behavior-change.

P.S. Net energy is a concept that applies most when energy is already coming in concentrated form, as with petroleum. It's about the energy cost of energy. When we are dealing with low-concentration "alternative" energy, it's the exergy (the concentration, or energy gradient) that matters. If energy is the ability to do any work at all, then how much work we can do depends on the energy gradient. We've been spoiled by having all that high-gradient energy around.

There's a lot of energy in a room heated to 100 degrees F. but you can't do any work in that room with it. If the temp outside that room is 32 degrees F, you can do work with the energy in the room at some interface with the outside. We take the energy in the room and slide down the gradient, producing work and entropy. This is yet another application of that pesky Second Law of Thermodynamics.


Florifulgurator... Glad to have sparked your interest. I've been wondering about your handle, do you say it, F_loriful-GUR_ator or F_lori-ful-gur-A_tor?

I began to realize at some point in the late 60's that complex natural systems behave as individuals, and science didn't have any means of refering to them individually. English refers to them, but not the scientific method. The scinece is limited to studying statistics and making up our own versions of natural systems represrented by our mathematical theories. The theories, oddly, don't have a way to refer to the units of natural organization they supposedly represent... is one problem.

Thinking about the considerable differences between mathematical and physical systems, and then studying how runaway growth processes steer their development in natural thermal convection currents, made it apparent something other than equations was really needed. That was my immersion, but farming or other things looked as systems that come and go through a life cycle of growth and decay would raise many of the same questions too.

I developed a kind of observer's crib sheet in 1979, called "An Unhidden Pattern of Events". That first attempt to write it up is still mostly OK, and linked from my publications list [] with other things. It may also be less complicated by the struggle and strain of trying to explain things to scientists who want no part of it, because they know science has nothing to do with the study of local, uncontrolled or individual systems...

The model is relatively simple, though, and based on an extension of the conservation laws []. If you trace natural processes that use energy from beginning to end their evolution can be studied as a succession of four separate irreversible and self-destabilizing developmental phases. They correspond to the four basic directeions of feedback. Chained together they can be expressed as an single event in time ¸¸¸.•´ ¯ `•.¸¸¸ or broken down as separate periods of regular proportional change [first¸¸¸.• then •´ ¯ then ¯ `• then •.¸¸¸]. Once you realize that local processes can't be following global maps it gets easier to find them in the data of things beginning and ending. As you begin to see change as needing these phases of intensification and relaxation, or fail trying, it becomes a great question generator about all kinds of changing systems of relationships.

Not all of what's on my website [] will make sense even after people get the basic idea, but there's lots there. My blog [] may be a good place to go, to skim over till you find something interesting.

The other two essays I linked above include some of my better understanding of our mass societal confusions, and some links. "Stimulus as Constraint" both offers a simple demonstration of the method and points to the clearly mistaken belief that stimulating the economy with efficiency improvements will reduce it's physical impacts and slow resource depletion. Having our cultural beliefs so completely contradict evident physical causation like that would make a case for our having a full blown case of socetal madness loose on the earth, it seems.

Mostly though, it's just fun to pick up early signs of new directions of developing events, making them subjects of original scientific research if you like, and to watch the events of life in general in a more intimate way.

phil henshaw

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