White Paper
CONNECTING THE DOTS:
From Resource Wars to the Rise of Planetarian Culture

EON, The Ecological Options Network is dedicated to “connecting the dots” both of the present geopolitical puzzle and the future promise of the planetization process.

From Globalization to Planetization - the Planetarian Vision
Whether we view ourselves primarily as citizens of the United States, of another country, as citizens of the planet, or all of the above, we are all, each in our own ways, now struggling to understand the underlying patterns of present unfolding events and how we can put our shoulders to the wheel of intentional evolution and work with others toward a peaceful, sustainable future for ourselves and our descendants.

While it's important to understand the “deep background” of current developments domestically and internationally beyond the spin and hype of propaganda and managed news, it's also imperative not to lose sight of the larger historical picture - the co-evolutionary drama in which we are all, consciously or not, contributing actors.

As U.S. citizens we urgently need to connect the dots of the present terrorism/counter-terrorism, corporate-driven “globalization” puzzle. What our government does in our name impacts mightily on the rest of the world.

As world citizens we simultaneously need to connect the dots of the emerging people-driven “planetization” movement. This exciting new 21st century co-evolutionary development outframes the outmoded 20th century “dominator politics” of the past and puts “cultural creatives” and international “civil society” in a pivotal, democratic, counterbalancing role to the powers of transnational corporations and the official institutions that govern on their behalf to the detriment of human rights and ecological continuity.

We are privileged and challenged to be living through a major historical cross-disolve as old entropic patterns play themselves out and new syntropic patterns arise. We are participant-observers in an age of transition between a self-deconstructing industrial and economic “globalized” world disorder and a self-generating biospheric and noetic “planetized” society. Like most births, it's both frightening and awe-inspiring.

From Homeland Security to Homeplanet Security
The “sound and fury,” smoke and flames of the current conflict can dominate the foreground of our field of vision, obscuring the broader, deeper epocal landscape of which they are a significant, but not determining part. For it is clear that in an ecosphere wherein “everything is connected to everything else,” “homeland security” for one nation-state can never be achieved at the expense of “homeplanet security” for all the members of the entire international community.

What are the new social, political and economic forms, the relationship forms; the sustainable technologies, the innovative institutions that have emerged at the local, national, regional and global levels in response to the multiple converging planetary survival threats we face as a species?

Who are the individuals, groups, companies and institutions that are helping to create a democratic, peaceful and ecologically sustainable future?

From multi-lateral personal relationships to multi-lateral global institutions; from intentional communities to international networks of CSO's (civil society organizations); from consensus decision-making to non-violent conflict resolution; from sexual healing to universal human rights; from straw-bale construction to a solar economy, the EON site is looking at some of the key elements of a new transnational culture growing up through the cracks in the status quo.

The EON team is researching, reporting on, teaching about and working to co-create, support and embody the new institutions, economic models, political and social forms and liberatory technologies based on humane and ecological values. We will continue to highlight those methods that are being invented, adapted and deployed by individuals, groups, corporations and governments around the world, to meet the converging “manmade” crises brought on by the globalization of corporatist industrial profit-driven values, practices and institutions.

We emphasize working models embodying the key value shifts crucial to the shift from corporate industrial based culture to a culture of enlightenment.
From control based To cooperation based

From exploitation based To compassion based

From possession based To liberation based

From short term profit based To long term sustainability

"Crisis Clusters' are paired with 'Eco-Option Clusters"

As one takes an informed look at the world today, it is as if the Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse - Pestilence, Famine, War and Death - have been merged, through leveraged buy-outs and hostile take-overs, into a larger, vertically and horizontally integrated Big 4 -

Corporate-led Globalization,

Nationalism,

Fundamentalism

and

Militarism

Their wild and reckless ride across the world brings us what political analyst Susan George calls the four converging, overlapping and interrelated “Crisis Clusters” that together characterize the opening of the 21st century:

The Environmental Destruction Cluster
The Poverty and Inequality Cluster
The Democracy & Empowerment Crisis Cluster
The Looming Economic Crisis Cluster
In the light of new emerging revelations, we would add:
The Energy/Peak Oil Crisis Cluster
Lest we despair, let us hasten to add that substantial counter forces, some of them not yet on the ruling elites' radar screens, are rising to meet and transform the four new Apocalyptic Riders (plus one) with what we call Planetarian Solution Clusters:
The Environmental Sustainability Solution Cluster,
The Eqalitarian Justice Solution Cluster
The Democratic Empowerment Solution Cluster
The Eco-Economics Solution Cluster
The Eco-Energy Solution Cluster.
Reports of “the End of History” Have Been Greatly Exaggerated -
Another World is Happening

“History,” said Time Machine author, H.G. Wells, “is a race between education and catastrophe.” Now, as the petro-philes of the current administration strut their arrogant, unilateral stuff on the world stage -- abrogating treaties, bombing, threatening, sanctioning, engineering coups, installing puppet regimes, supporting dictators and oligarchs, causing unspeakable misery, scoffing at international law abroad, trampling civil rights at home, targeting 60 countries in its pursuit of “Full Spectrum Dominance” (as the weapons wonks call it) --- a growing number of “observers” have begun to wonder if history isn't now more precisely, a race between the demise of the biosphere and the deconstruction of the American Empire.

Converging, Interacting Global Crises Vectors
(All arguably traceable to unchecked, entropic corporate rule.)
Climate Change - carbon loading of the atmosphere by industry
Epidemics
Social Dislocations - Refugees - Mass cross-border population flows
Subjugation of Women
Biosphere Destabilization
Resource Depletion -
Diversity Loss - Biological & Cultural
Militarism & Institutionalized Violence, State and 'private' terrorism
Elite Media Control
Weapons of Mass Destruction - nuclear, chemical & biological
Poverty/Health Gaps
Pollution - Technological Intoxication - chemical, nuclear, EMR
Human Rights Violations - labor, children, minorities, indigenous peoples

Ecological Option Vectors
(Civil Society-led initiatives of syntropic innovation.)
Civil Society-led Democratic Governance
Bio-Regionalism
Bio-Benign Technology
Bio-Remediation
Food Health
Eco-Economics
Non-Violent Conflict Resolution
Community Self-Reliance, Going Local
Celebration & perpetuation of diversity - cultural & biological
De-Corporatization - 're-regulation,' enforced corporate accountability
Expanded Relationship & Family Forms
Human / All Gender / All Species Rights
Universal Access to Education & Information
Biomimicry in industrial and social design
Multi-lateral, Democratic Regional & International Institutions
What the World Wants

Back in 1991 the World Game Institute published a chart entitled “What the World Wants.” It listed 14 objectives, showed their interlinkages, and gave supporting data and strategies to “make the point that what the world needs to solve the major systemic problems confronting humanity is both available and affordable.” Those objectives :


1. Eliminate starvation and malnourishment
2. Provide health care
3. Eliminate inadequate housing and homelessness
4. Provide clean and abundant water
5. Eliminate illiteracy
6. Increase energy and material use efficiency
7. Increase renewable energy
8. Debt management
9. Stabilize population
10. Reverse soil erosion
11. Reverse deforestation
12. Reverse ozone depletion
13. Stop acid rain
14. Stop global warming


Now, nearly two decades later, those challenges to humanity still remain and most of them seem even further from being met. Yet there has been and continues to be positive change at every level from the local to the international. But how to chart and track and participate in those changes if the dominant corporate media, from which most people get their worldview, can't see them or won't report on them - or is overtly or covertly opposed to them?

There's a famous Rorschatz image which, viewed in one gestalt, looks like the face of an aged crone, yet changes with a slight shift in perception to show the face of a youthful maiden. Once you see both faces, you can switch back and forth between them. They're both inseparable aspects of the same image, but learning a conscious shift in perception is necessary to see them both . For us, that's a useful metaphor for the current world situation. The fundamental purpose of EON is to aid in this conscious perceptual shift.

Another useful metaphor is the cinematic “cross-dissolve,” in which the fade-out of one scene overlaps the fade-in of another. “Freeze” the film the middle of the dissolve and both scenes are present, superimposed on each other in the same frame.

It's as if in this period we're in the middle of a long, slow, historical “cross-dissolve.” The incoming scene of a post-corporate world of Enlightened Cultures of cooperation, liberation, conservation and long-term sustainability is just beginning its fade-in to visibility, while the present corporate scene of competition, control, exploitation and short-term profit is almost imperceptibly beginning its fade-out.
EON's goal is to strengthen the incoming scene by helping to give it more light - to “connect the dots” that Hawken and Donahur are talking about and give the “bird's eye” view that Natural Step founder Karl-Henrik Robert finds so necessary to sustain hope in the face of the “abominations” Galeano so pithily and ironically describes.

SOUTH - NORTH LINKAGES
We have learned much over the years from our friends and colleagues in the Global South. We continue to today. Chief among the learnings is that, by any objective observation, and certainly in the view of the people of the South, since it is us Northerners who have and continue to bear most of the responsibility for causing the evolutionary challenges now confronting our species, it is arrogance squared for us from the North to suggest that it is principally we who will solve them with the same ideologies, policies, practices and technologies that have spawned them. To recognize this is not to play a global game of Blaming & Shaming, but simply to acknowledge historical reality and recognize the present reality that species-wide challenges (whoever caused them) must and will be met by the co-creative pluck and genius of our entire species.
We feel strongly that a key part of EON's mission must be to support , encourage and facilitate two-way exchange, mutual aid and solidarity between evolutionary activists in the South and North, with special emphasis on restitution and restoration as well as innovation and the revaluing and adaptation of traditional and indigenous knowledge, wisdom and time-proven best practices

.
WEBWORK
Our research shows that, encouragingly, thousands of organizations and websites exist which address in some way, at some level, all of our current evolutionary challenges. One site for example, Global Issues Affecting Everyone, is maintained by Anup Shah at his own expense and has over 3000 links to related sites, news, archives and information sources - most, but by no means all, in the so far more heavily-internetted North. Sites like Wiser Earth and ManyOne are using their resources to help link the activist communities documented by Paul Hawken in his book and website Blessed Unrest.


Of the many important evolutionary initiatives currently in play (see partial list below), we've decided to focus on the six broad issues displayed on our home page and explained more fully here.

Local Self-Reliance
Indigenous Rights/Wisdom
Links - General
Education
Communications/Media/News
Planetary Policies
Eco-Transportation
Human Rights
Alternative International Institutions
Cultural Transformation
Consciousness/Evolution
Eco-Community
Bio-Benign Technologies/Biomimicry
Non-violence/Peace/Real Security
Real Democracy
Food/Agriculture
Energy
Eco-Economics
Alternative Health and Healing

Neither Cassandra nor Pollyanna
We have developed a starting place for what we think is an holistic interpretive analytic framework for mapping, documenting and reporting on the emergent elements of a potentially sustainable planetary society or “polyculture” - diverse, peaceful, celebratory and richly creative. This EON Matrix is designed to help us maintain “binocular vision,” the capacity to see simultaneously both the looming crises and the creative options now available.

What's Working Where?
As Kevin Danahur points out, “We know how to do renewable energy. We know how to do organic agriculture. We know how to do democracy. We know how to create a sustainable society. All the pieces are there. Now we just have to connect the dots.”


Here's a brief list of some of the “dots” that we're talking about:

The Forum of the Poor, micro credit banks, peasant cooperatives and alternative currencies in Thailand
Grassroots urban economic democracy and waste recycling in Curitiba, Brazil
Integrated Pest Management in the Philippines
The Grameen Bank - microcredit & coops in Bengladesh
Wave power electrical generation in Scotland and Canada
Wind power generation in Denmark and Holland
Non-violent conflict resolution in Darmsala's Tibetan exile community
Permaculture in Australia and No., Central and So. America and Asia
The international “eco-village” movement
The international intentional community movement
Economic democracy in Kerala, India
The Landless Peasant Movement in Brazil
The “Earth Charter” initiative process
“Cradle-to-Cradle” extended resource responsibility by industries in the European Union
Gaviotas in Columbia
WOOF - the World Organization of Organic Farmers
Union-led municipal government in Puerto Alegre, Brazil
The international Jubilee 2000 movement to “forgive” third world debt
U.S. Municipally owned utility districts using renewable energy sources
These examples are only a small representative sample of what preliminary research suggests are thousands of working alternatives which together form what we've begun thinking of as “ECOS” - the Emerging Culture of Sustainability. The prospect of mapping and mirroring ECOS to its many contributors and to the widest possible public gives us great juice and enthusiasm which we hope you share.
We find it to be a welcome antidote to the current depressing political developments in the U.S.. There's a big world community out there, ECOS is rising, "another world IS possible" and sooner or later, grudgingly or willingly, Washington, the right, the left, the oiligarchy , the TNC's and the technocrats are going to have to get with it.