“This is to be solved by smarter people than me!”
… or we have to build from the bottom and not expect the solution from above.
An argument caught my eyes a few days ago on one of our social media channels. The subject of the discussion was the lack of water in India and the fact that by 2040 we will have to live biding our lives on a parched planet.
Naturally I couldn’t help joining the discussion. There were loads of comments like “it is not our problem to deal with, we don’t live in India” or “this can be solved only by politicians, they have to be pressured”. These usually make me sad and think whether our ignorance is rather fed by our inferiority complex or resignation.
At last, at the end of last week, I had a chance to meet — among others — David Orban, who held a meetup in connection with the Network Society in Budapest. We got clean-cut feedback that it is currently impossible to change things via political elections. The planet and human society are not strong enough to lobby against the leaders of the economy and companies. The philanthropy of multimillionaires is not enough either, their donations are just drops in the ocean.
What is the solution? We have to build from the bottom upwards. It already became obvious at the WorldSummit that there are several thousand active organizations in the world which think in different ways. These organizations unite several million people who think absolutely variously about things. They are the ones, who don’t understand why human society is still about racism and religious discrimination in 2019.
We simply need an alternative economy, a form of society, a network of supporting organizations which do not expect others to do something, politicians, well-doers, scientists, magicians or a “higher power”…
So, somebody else who will solve the problem instead of us (possibly without us)… We have to admit that sentences like “it is not my problem, the scientists are going to do something about it” don’t make sense. We have a total of 10 (according to some researchers only 5) years, everything we can call natural inhabitat on this planet is going to start towards an irreversible decline.
The person who decides what car I should use and whether I should select waste, or use plastic bags is me. This is our responsibility which cannot be assigned to political-economic powers. Which means we have to do things individually too to save civilization. To be able to find your place in this you only have to open your eyes and be aware.
At the same time, we have to realize that civil society has to create the conception of economic, social, legal, mental and inseparable political changes and enforce them to be able to survive. Society has to organize themselves and operate as political activists, just like Extinction Rebellion, the initiative of Greta Thunberg, the Fridays for Future which is getting more and more global and the example of the Sunrise Movement in the USA. Besides individual decisions and a change of lifestyle, we have to conceive and lobby for — enforce — firm demands presented by researchers and scientists in more and more detail in practice. It means that beyond a personal change in the lifestyle we need civil activism that provides for enforcement of significant political demands!
We don’t only talk about change at ENVIENTA but take actual steps. Among other things, we helped creating the e-infrastructure of hackathon set up because of the water crises in South Africa. We worked together with local volunteers to start the makers’ culture in Nigeria. As Michel Bauwens, the analysis of the P2P fund and their partners (downloadable e-book) present how local movements act improving the quality of life together with the reducing burden on the natural. The improvement of quality of life goes together with the reduced burden on the environment, they also contribute to the remake of the organization from the bottom up to the top. Working together with scientists and professors of Indian, Californian and South-American universities results in the fact that more and more graduates are focussing in their theses on the burning problems of today and tomorrow and work out solutions which are locally adaptable.
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