It is tediously easy for me to write at length about Nelson development issues; I have to rein in my rhetoric. I began to write about this from the month I got here in 1987.
Then I wrote, “Urban refugees will be the ruin of this community.”
They come from cities to find a better quality of life. Making Nelson grow, they ruin what is here now. I totally agree with the people who feel a visceral dislike of the Nelson Commons.
I have run for council on the same themes ever since 1995, when I went against Gary Exner and his conservative vision for this town. But even liberals like Dave Elliot and other progressive politicians are in harmony with growth economics.
As Dwyn Robertse said in her letter to the Star November 1, “embracing economics above all else” and “the economy as god” is the attitude that underlies all that vision.
This is a time when there is less and less room for middle ground. The economy we have accepted all our lives may have had room for dropping out and retreating to the country back in the 1960s and ‘70s. Now there is no room for the fence sitting “I am not taking sides” type of disengaged non-citizen.
It is so easy to merely say that all politics are useless, corrupted and corrupting — better to drop out, do nothing, put up some kind of magic wall against negativity invading your space.
That is a path of giving up, no matter how you dress it up with “I am creating my own reality.”
I do not know how consciousness can transform the material world, but it sure can transform an individual’s inner space, and from there that person will move in a different way in the external world.
That is how a person is the change they want to see etc. Change your consciousness about the economy, that will alter how you live, your change will be an example, and others may do as you do.
But when all is done, you still will have to be more active in the public sphere, not just in private life.
Political power will reach out and touch your life. What are you going to do then?
So, here I would like to float a balloon for the party of no growth (PONG).
I tried in November 2011. I ran for council on that platform.
I was slaughtered at the polls.
I will try again a year from now. Will there be a PONG party then? If you want to run a slate, now is the time to organize.
PONG is strong: belong! Economic-growth dogma is wrong.