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If we don't cultivate empathy with our thoughts and actions, it's not going to grow. Without a lot more empathy in action we're not going to have a chance of surviving together. So I approve of two tips tonight to cultivate empathy in your life:

  1. stop eating the animals, think about why
  1. give what you can to the people who need it the most

I thought about wood and grass and it's mostly made of lots of edible glucose sugars that are tied together into an inedible form which is cellulose. And the carbohydrates in food like wheat and rice and potato is also mostly glucose, stuck together into larger bundles like starch. But you can chemically untie the cellulose down again into the edible glucose using some acids, and some microbes that live in animals like cows and termites can do it biochemically using enzymes. It would be less painful to Mother Earth if people could eat wood or grass instead of cereals, and it would be more convenient to people if they could do so easily. People would also be much more politically independent because they would be more nutritionally and economically independent if they could do so.

So does anyone know how to eat wood or grass easily?

We would be very well served by cooperating with each other economically as well, as intensively as possible. First, by cooperating with each other we grow stronger together, and second, we remove ourselves as a resource for our opponents. I see democratically managed worker cooperatives as the present day model for this. Banking and insurance cooperatives are the logical candidates for primary emphasis, since they represent the ability to accumulate capital for productive enterprises while removing it from the control of our opponents, and everyone can patronize them with a minimum of effort.

Is anyone involved, as a customer or member, with a local worker cooperative? Is anyone interested in joining or founding one? Does anyone know of any nexus for worker cooperation in the Miami, Florida area? Does the poll allow multiple answers?

Originally posted to soularsystem on Fri Nov 05, 2010 at 11:51 PM PDT.

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Comment Preferences

  •  Yes on Prop 19? ;) (0+ / 0-)

    In all seriousness, a balanced vegan diet is possible without resorting to grass and wood. Whether it could be sustainable for 7 billion people is debatable, but I agree that it is worth a try.

    As for empathy, the world would be a better place if more than a few SCOTUS Justices had it ;)

    Aggie Liberal--Bleed Maroon--Act Blue!

    by Underwater Archaeologist on Sat Nov 06, 2010 at 12:09:53 AM PDT

    •  Hello (0+ / 0-)

      Yes, that is a good thing to do, but if we ate cellulose derived food we could use far less land, leaving more space for nature. Also a big part of agriculture could be re-localized since no special land type is needed to grow cellulose. This has political and economic implications that are favorable for democrats.

  •  Dear Miami (0+ / 0-)

    You should read Distraction by Bruce Sterling. It features some ideas similar to this.
    Personally, I think we are no longer capable of steering the ship. We hit the iceberg, all the grass in the world can't turn back time...

  •  Yes, animals do it all the time. (0+ / 0-)

    It requires a large, specialized gut to digest stubborn materials.

    It requires a LOT of the low energy food source.
    OR
    It requires a VERY low energy lifestyle.

    Koalas, sloths and many caterpillars are examples of low energy lifestyles.  

    The more energy intensive a creature's metabolism, the more energy rich food they require.  

    BTW - there are creatures that eat vast quantities of high cellulose materials.  They are bacteria and fungi.

    Show me the POLICY!

    by Fabian on Sat Nov 06, 2010 at 03:16:13 AM PDT

    •  Thanks (0+ / 0-)

      Cellulose is very energy rich- consider that the next time you sit in front of a burning log!
      It is the poor conversion ratio to usable nutrients in some natural systems that you are thinking of.
      Maybe some edible fungus or mold. I am imagining something like making a puree of the cellulose and feeding a culture that produces edible byproducts. The higher the efficiency the better, so that you could support the caloric needs of a large population with minimal industrial plant.

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