The Loony Left
After Crystal and i fought about the usefulness of memetics as metaphor (forget it being a science) he sent me an excited email about the Thrive video he had come across.
[It is an] interesting mix of new age, new left, and
libertarian thinking that is drawing in all sorts of different people.
Notice the production values and the incorporation of all these
different perspectives and prejudices into one story….
But quickly into this video it clear what this really is, another slickly produced piece of loony new age nonsense. Crystal is playing with me to point out that successful memes are not necessarily useful ones. i did not watch the whole movie which appears to be a wild mix of conspiracy theories around banking and energy companies, new age silliness around crop circles, universal codes, free energy and UFOs and inspiring monologs about how we can build a better world.
So as someone who is invested in the building a better world game, this is more than a bit painful to watch, even just the trailer for it. [Though i did find a well reasoned debunk blog] The first part of the problem is that it pins solutions on things that dont work (free energy) or things which cant be tapped (UFOs) and seeks meaning in places where it is not (crop circles). But the more vexing piece is that the righteous pieces they are bringing up – the need for wealth redistribution, problems with the Federal Reserves role in the banking system and more – are harmed by being thrown in with the whack job stuff. It in essence takes serious issues off the table by linking them to occult paranormal nonsense.
Sadly, this is not the only version of this stuff. One of the better articles about how Occupy might resume this Spring i just read in Reality Sandwich. Reality Sandwich is part of the Evolver Social Movement which is the brainchild of NYC author and activist Daniel Pinchbeck. Pinchbeck is slightly infamous for coming to visit Twin Oaks before my time and writing a not especially accurate slam piece about the place for the NY Times. Evolver, sadly, also mixes occult and paranormal reports with more critical thinking like the Occupy piece above.
One of the better debunk pieces is the crop circle creation video below.