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Ishmael Community Guestbook Archive

Back to the *Current* Guestbook Previous 15 Records · Next 15 Records

VerevolfTheGrouch #14838
, USA - Thursday, December 6, 2001 at 18:24:52 CST (GMT -6:00)

I'm not sure how plausible it is for every community to make computers locally. I don't know this for certain (although I guess I should because I'm studying computer science), I'm pretty sure the silicon chips have to be manufactured in completely sterile conditions.

Matthew Wokulich #14837
Hatfield, PA USA -
Thursday, December 6, 2001 at 18:4:12 CST (GMT -6:00)

Quite simply...I am amazed.

A poet or writer could express what I am feeling, but I am humble enough to admit that I cannot.

I will do my part. My friends and family will begin to hear the thoughts and ideals behind Ishmael and Quinn's other writings. I hope that we are not too late.

Peggy Schlaefflin #14836
Lake Leelanau, MI USA -
Thursday, December 6, 2001 at 17:25:19 CST (GMT -6:00)

Ishmael was required reading for an ethics class. I'm glad I got the opportunity to read this book. It has changed my thinking.

Sara #14835
Thursday, December 6, 2001 at 17:5:28 CST (GMT -6:00)

Debbie and Libran -- thanks! it's great to hear encouragement sometimes. put me in a much better mood after hearing madrone's condecending "poor little rich girl" bullshit. this is really pathetic to admit, but after i read what madrone said, i was so insulted i cried. the people in the language lab were all like asking if i was ok, it was kind of depressing...

besides, the point isn't money, it's A) what you do with the money you have, and B) how you find ways to get what you can't afford for free. maybe the reason i like living in the city so much is that there are so many oppurtunities for those things (as i explained in my post about how it's maybe even easier to live simply and tribally in the city than in the country).

well, i'm signing off now, i have a french test in like 20 minutes and then a paper to write tonight on a very interesting article about 3rd world advertising. i'll put a citation for it up here tomorrow, because if you guys can find it i'm sure i'll be right up your alley.

jaret #14834
Vanc, BC Canada -
Thursday, December 6, 2001 at 17:5:4 CST (GMT -6:00)

At least now were distinguishing between big business which is about growth and small sustainable business and that it's big business were trashing.

It was pointed out and thank you Ameno for being clear, that your only saying that tribal business can't work at a corporate level but can at a mom and pop shop level. Though you couldn't claim mom and pop shops as tribal because of the single owner sole proprieter bit, right? Hope I'm not to far off, it's so hard trying to realy understand what others mean just from these simple words on a screen.

Oh and whats with this we have to out source for paper, ink, and electricity, tape, cameras, and production facilities, that can all be made on site. The computer would be hard I'll give you that. But computers are not getting cheaper because their getting harder to make. And who's to say what kind of smelting facilities will pop up everywhere in the future using old metal to make new items. So each communty could make their own computers. As for capital for advertising, I can't see a tribal business wanting to sell outside their community Though I wouldn't think a newspaper would be in a sustainable community.

Obviously there needs to be a starting point of capital and maybe tapping the outside world for sales but the long run would be that you didn't need to. As Debbie said, there has to be a transition stage, what else, wiggle your nose like Genie?

And then there is still the point that there is no way we are going back to an old model, were tyring to find a new one. Tribal businesses are just learning what they are at this point. And as a business owner Ameno you should know that a employee owned business either fails from lack of unity or excels anywhere from 150% to 300% or more in their first year alone. Less sick days and the whole bit.

The new model I would say can't exclude planetary communication ability either, which will never cease to exist now. There will be trade and communication, we just want it to be very minimal in how it effects the independant community. Who could give up the ability to warn the next town of the Tornado?

What if each person was an independant contractor working for the community company?

Go mom and Pop shops, my favorite customers.

Then the corporation could just facilitate the buying and trading of gooods bewteen the mom and pop shops, basically be the general store. Can a corporation have the desire for sustainability and not growth Ameno?


The winner is always part of the answer, the loser is always part of the problem; The winner sees an answer to every problem, the loser sees a problem for every answer. The winner says"It may be difficult but its possible," The loser says" It may be possible but its too difficult,"

Sorry no author listed where I got it from....

Please stay alert for future discourses on whats working and not working, successes and failures (lessons), in a tribal business.

Jen #14833
Webster, WI USA -
Thursday, December 6, 2001 at 16:59:27 CST (GMT -6:00)

Jim (& Sam)~

Thanks for the info! It's funny, Jim, that you found the book at a garage sale. I first discovered Ishi at a used book store in Minneapolis, MN. There was also a movie made about Ishi starring Graham Greene and Jon Voight. Typically Hollywood with lots of "dramatized for your viewing pleasure" stuff, but entertaining and incredibly poignant. I'm glad to see others are discovring the story of this brave and forgiving man. He deserves an honored place in our history.

Thanks again! Jen

Sara #14832
Thursday, December 6, 2001 at 16:52:12 CST (GMT -6:00)


about "giving things up" --

i think what's meant when DQ says that you don't have to give things up is that, ultimately, unless you are the greediest, shallowest, and most thoughtless person in the world, you can probably live sustainably without giving up many things that truly give you happiness in your life.

True, i know a few people who are car fanatics and would probably go throw themselves in front of a train if the government announced there would never be another SUV. however, some of the new electric cars are almost as kick-ass as the gas guzzling ones. and even without that, if the car-driving population was limited to people who really and truly were passionate about cars, we would not have the fossil fuel, pollution, and traffic problems we have now. Most people drive because they have to, or because cars are a status thing. Similarly, while no one who has central air conditioning would ever voluntarily give it up (ok, so i did, but that doesn't matter...), i bet no one is really all that passionate about it either. i bet it's something we could gradually phase out if we tried, rather than saying, "if you want to save the world, you are going to HAVE to give up central A/C right away."

Big houses -- people want them because they're told they do by culture, because it's a status thing. also, in the suburbs, the nicer neighborhoods all have big houses. you'd probably be hard pressed to find a 2-bedroom place in your local ritzy part of town. I bet there aren't that many people who, if you broke it to them gently, would have a really big problem living in a house that, say, has a number of bedrooms and baths proportionate to the number of people who live there. And, just like the car thing, the number of people who absolutely must have the most gigantic house possible to be truly happy is probably small enough to where those people could do that if they really wanted to.

This is why i say the key is to diversify and to live simply. If everyone eliminated all the silly little status things or things they do just because everyone does it, and lived only with the things they really needed and wanted, i bet things would work a lot better. without everyone having to go do outward bound and learn to tan hides in their own urine. This, in my opinion is what DQ means when he says you don't have to give things up. It's not that we can save the world without having to change our consumption-obsessed lifestyles, but that we can get rid of the consumption-obsessed lifestyles if we can first get rid of the "bigger better faster more" meme.

C.P. #14831
Thursday, December 6, 2001 at 16:44:20 CST (GMT -6:00)

First I would just like to comment on how interesting it is that David used the word 'bitchy' in reference to his 'fight' (!?) with Madrone over feminism. Seems to me you both have a bit to learn about feminism, at least as far as communication and what it conveys about one's thinking. Madrone, I find it curious that you say you subscribe to feminist tenents, yet claim that 'rights' and 'guilt' have nothing to do with it . . .though I cannot read back through all the posts (of mostly the same people squabbling back to forth, may I add), to find exactly what you are referring to. But if by 'rights' you mean civil rights that women were granted by the U.S. government, it goes a lot deeper than YOU appear to understand. [I'm not even going to touch the 'guilt' comment]. The right to vote was a symbolic action of an entire movement . . .a movement that changed the way people thought and acted, much like Ishmael is encouraging us to do. It doesn't appear that you have read any of the first 'feminist' writers, or you would know how long and 'deep' (as you say) the struggle was. And the Feminist Mystique was a ground-breaking book for it's era, that is still amazingly still applicable today. Anna Quinlan wrote an excellent article on it's relevence that you should check out before dismissing it so off-handedly. It has more original, radical thought than most of the supposed feminist literature out there today. Now that that is all said, I do believe that you are free to interpret philosophy any way you wish . . .please just don't speak on behalf of an entire gender when you do so. Feminism is multi-dimensional and at it's core is about choices, options . . .no 'ONE RIGHT WAY TO LIVE'. Just food for thought when you go to support your next argument . . .

sorry for the diatribe all! to those who use this as a tool for constructive dialogue I salute you- keep up the good work! -- and to all a good night . . .

Libran #14830
, USA -
Thursday, December 6, 2001 at 16:30:33 CST (GMT -6:00)


I understand your situation. I make about as much as you in my warehouse job. If Madrone ever said that kind of thing to me I'd seriously freak out- with no tact to be found within a hundred miles. People like you and I both seem to face the same spectre- homelessness. Don't worry about it too much. If you ever end up in such a state, you could come stay at my place in connecticut- provided that I am not destitute. If that were the case we would probably be two of the best homeless people ever to play the game.

To the future, Libran

Debbie #14829
, NJ USA -
Thursday, December 6, 2001 at 16:20:42 CST (GMT -6:00)


I think your presence here is especially great because it proves that Quinn's ideas appeal to more than just tree huggers. Quinn has said over and over that he doesn't teach what he teaches out of a love for nature but out of a love for people. But you have to admit, there is good reason why so many tree huggers are attracted to these ideas (I'll include myself here), many of us through our experiences with the rest of the community of life have gotten that nagging feeling that maybe we're not special as mom culture tells us, maybe we're just another species, and of course Quinn's ideas validated this for us. But! This does not mean that these ideas apply only to those who are immersed in "nature," as you have shown.

How you feel about the country is exactly how I feel about the city, "it's a nice place to visit...." I remember saying that to myself every weekend as a kid when my family went to visit my grandparents in Brooklyn. But if you can thrive there, more power to you.

Actually, I think cities are great centers for progressive and radical thought, and experimenting with other ways to live. They always have been, right? So anyway, I sincerly hope you're able to convince some of your fellow new yorkers that this kind of thought isn't just for us hippies.

Sara #14828
Thursday, December 6, 2001 at 15:42:30 CST (GMT -6:00)

madrone said:

"it seems that you don't have a very good idea of much of what is going on right under your nose there at the center of the universe, NYC. That is probably because you are among the privileged who live there. Mind you, I didn't say wealthy, but I can see from your post that you live far better than millions of your near neighbors there. I stand by what I said about cities, and before you disagree to vigorously, you might want too take a more serious look around you."

uhhh... i'm going to try to be tactful here.

i live better than millions of my neighbors? perhaps this is true because i live tribally and independently of what my TV says i need, but it certainly isn't that way because i am more wealthy monetarily. i am an office temp. i have zero job security. i make about 2/3 the money someone doing the same job permanently would get, and i have no benefits. to be frank, i make about $14K a year. and while that would be a pretty good living in the country, it's less than half of what the average entry level office worker in a low-paying field makes here. the only way i am able to support myself is because of all the cracks i've found to fall through. the fact that you would insinuate that i am idly rich really offends me. i'm on the verge of selling an egg so that i can pay for school and live a bit more comfortably without having to bring my deadbeat father to court. the only reason i haven't broken up with my boyfriend is because i couldn't afford to live here without splitting my rent with him. i am on the verge of homelessness. and, if i have to be poor, i should at least have the luxury of more "priveleged" people's sympathy, respect, awe, whatever. which is not to say i expect that from you, but that it's really fucking unfair that not only do i have to be so poor, i also have to endure cracks about how i just don't understand the plight of the less fortunate. i am the fucking less fortunate.

Stephen Figgins #14827
Monroe, WA USA -
Thursday, December 6, 2001 at 15:39:50 CST (GMT -6:00)

Ameno, I am not sure you understood my post (15154) your reply (15156) didn't seem to have anything to do with what I wrote.

In 15156 you seem to be ammending your position on busineses, that the problem is not their need to own things, but rather their need to procure things from other businesses (paper, ink, electricity, etc.). Are you now saying your ploblem with businesses is their lack of self sufficiency?

You might want to consider that Quinn uses the term tribal to describe how you organize to make a living, not whether your business is small or large, makes a huge profit or just stays afloat, is self sufficient or interdependent. Tribe for Quinn is about organization. Business is about making a living.

Before you spend much more effort writing a response to the proposals Quinn makes in Beyond Civilization, you might want to take the time to read and understand them.

Sara #14826
Thursday, December 6, 2001 at 15:24:33 CST (GMT -6:00)

Debbie, i wasn't trying to come off as a city snob. I grew up in rural louisiana, and when i graduated high school i chose to live in the city because, after visiting cities quite often, i decided that i liked the life better. not because i thought everyone should live that way, but because i liked the freedom city life allows and all the different resources that are available. I'm actually pretty at home back in the country. but to use the cliche, "it's a nice place to visit, but i wouldn't want to live there." not because it's somehow substandard, but because it isn't for me.

i agree, there are a lot of new york snobs, but i'm not one of them. part of the reason i like the city so much is that there are so many of them, making so much noise, that it's just that much easier for me to live tribally and fall through the cracks.

madrone #14825
, USA -
Thursday, December 6, 2001 at 15:12:36 CST (GMT -6:00)

Ok, David--I went too far, I also feel that you did. Shall we just "walk away" from comments now past, and begin anew? That is what I will do, in any event. I was not, by the way, purposefully ignoring you before (tho I'm sure my comment strongly implied that). I was simply responding where it seemed most fruitful at the time, and also given the time available to me. What you had most recently said, before tempers flared, did not fit my parameters at that moment. I will repeat, I am still learning about communication; it does matter to me greatly. And I repeat as well that I have often appreciated your remarks herein, whether or not directed to me specifically. But, brother, it does seem that you do lose your temper needlessly, as I have witnessed beteen you and FC.

Debbie--thanks for your response to Sara's "hippy-dippy" post. Nuff said there.

Sara--it seems that you don't have a very good idea of much of what is going on right under your nose there at the center of the universe, NYC. That is probably because you are among the privileged who live there. Mind you, I didn't say wealthy, but I can see from your post that you live far better than millions of your near neighbors there. I stand by what I said about cities, and before you disagree to vigorously, you might want too take a more serious look around you.

I don't know anyone else's version of feminism, tho I do know that mine is not "typical", really, as I am not one to want "equal rights" with men in takerdom--which is what I mean by being "jr men". And I certainly need no man to feel guilty about anything--as I have said numerous times, none of us raised and conditioned ourselves to this horror, by any name you call it!

I am most of all interested in AWARENESS by all of us, concerning the way that patriarchy's men-privileging, woman-oppressing memes live in all of us, personally, and real thought and action toward change of our minds. A changed world takes changed minds. Jkd pointed out some of the ways to change minds by changing our brains, for instance, to attain a more holistic perception of life. We must also look at things --like violence--in our memes, which keep us on this destructive path. Destructive to all of us and all of life, not just to women by any means.

I know this is a touchy subject guys, and I do intend to be provocative, but not just mindlessly so, as I perceive FC to be. I'm not just here, REALLY! to bash men or anyone else--but to try to stimulate awareness and dialogue. For those who don't know what I'm talking about, I'd have to say that it's even more than reading works like The Feminine Mystique, which by the way I never read! I have been much more interested in works attempting to reconstruct pre-patriarchal, goddess worshipping cultures, and stuff by Mary Daly, such as Gyn/ecology, which is rhetorical criticism of the language and shaping of culture through language, that has taken feminism lots deeper than "rights" and "guilt", etc.

In a hurry now, probably losing my thread, so I'll stop. Thanks all for comments==

and Ameno, I am highly impressed. You are articulating things which have been lurking at the back of my brain for ages now, in the form of hunches....can't wait to see more from you.


Libran #14824
, USA -
Thursday, December 6, 2001 at 15:6:39 CST (GMT -6:00)


I agree that a tribal buisiness cannot break it's ties with taker economy. The homeless are also unable to do this- they require taker economy to survive. The point of tribal buisiness is not to sever that bond, but to give it's members complete social support- rather than the strictly financial support offered by hierarchial buisiness. I don't know how you came upon the notion that a tribe could exist with no other tribes present. Tribal independence depends upon the existence of other tribes. Natural selection has left us with the tribal organisation of humans(up until recently). A great deal of the tribal form resulted from interaction with other tribes. If the cultural barrier were suddenly lifted(only on tribe left), what would stop the population of the 'last tribe' from dispersing? There is plenty of competition within any tribe- competition that would tear it apart if the members could leave at any little disturbance. Without the existence of other tribes to reinforce identity, why would the 'only tribe' remain a tribe? Tribalism is an evolutionary stable structure because any 'only tribe' would quickly become many tribes, thus restoring the climax community. You made your statement in all caps which makes me feel that you really believe it. If you find fault with this logic, I would like to hear about it. There is more I could have written, but I wanted to keep it short.


I liked what you said about gradual change. Perhaps we should consider gearing up for dark times ahead. Instead of putting all effort into changing the situation, we might want to get ready for collapse. DQ could have been too little, too late- but effective none-the-less in illuminating what is going on.

I share David's incompehensible need to respond to FC. I have my own ideas about why he posts and why I respond. He knows these reasons and still can't help himself. Neither can I. Anyone who advertises Ishmael like he does cannot be that bad for us. Check out his website at www.Faithcontender.mybravenet.com. He's only three percent done on The Gospel According to Ishmael. Maybe he has nothing more to add...

Onward, Libran

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