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As read by Mike Malloy 2/13/12 

A New Declaration
by Derrick Jensen on Feb 1, 2012 • 5:43 pm

We hold these truths to be self-evident:

That the real, physical world is the source of our own lives, and the lives of others. A weakened planet is less capable of supporting life, human or otherwise.

Thus the health of the real world is primary, more important than any social or economic system, because all social or economic systems are dependent upon a living planet.

It is self-evident that to value a social system that harms the planet’s capacity to support life over life itself is to be out of touch with physical reality.

That any way of life based on the use of nonrenewable resources is by definition not sustainable.

That any way of life based on the hyper-exploitation of renewable resources is by definition not sustainable: if, for example, fewer salmon return every year, eventually there will be none. This means that for a way of life to be sustainable, it must not harm native communities: native prairies, native forests, native fisheries, and so on.

That the real world is interdependent, such that harm done to rivers harms those humans and nonhumans whose lives depend on these rivers, harms forests and prairies and wetlands surrounding these rivers, harms the oceans into which these rivers flow. Harm done to mountains harms the rivers flowing through them. Harm done to oceans harms everyone directly or indirectly connected to them.

That you cannot argue with physics. If you burn carbon-based fuels, this carbon will go into the air, and have effects in the real world.

That creating and releasing poisons into the world will poison humans and nonhumans.

That no one, no matter how rich or powerful, should be allowed to create poisons for which there is no antidote.

That no one, no matter how rich or powerful, should be allowed to create messes that cannot be cleaned up.

That no one, no matter how rich or powerful, should be allowed to destroy places humans or nonhumans need to survive.

That no one, no matter how rich or powerful, should be allowed to drive human cultures or nonhuman species extinct.

That reality trumps all belief systems: what you believe is not nearly so important as what is real.

That on a finite planet you cannot have an economy based on or requiring growth. At least you cannot have one and expect to either have a planet or a future.

That the current way of life is not sustainable, and will collapse. The only real questions are what will be left of the world after that collapse, and how bad things will be for the humans and nonhumans who come after. We hold it as self-evident that we should do all that we can to make sure that as much of the real, physical world remains intact until the collapse of the current system, and that humans and nonhumans should be as prepared as possible for this collapse.

That the health of local economies are more important than the health of a global economy.

That a global economy should not be allowed to harm local economies or land bases.

That corporations are not living beings. They are certainly not human beings.

That corporations do not in any real sense exist. They are legal fictions. Limited liability corporations are institutions created explicitly to separate humans from the effects of their actions—making them, by definition, inhuman and inhumane. To the degree that we desire to live in a human and humane world—and, really, to the degree that we wish to survive—limited liability corporations need to be eliminated.

That the health of human and nonhuman communities is more important than the profits of corporations.

We hold it as self-evident, as the Declaration of Independence states, “That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends [Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of Happiness], it is the Right of the People to alter or abolish it. . . .” Further, we hold it as self-evident that it would be more precise to say that it is not the Right of the People, nor even their responsibility, but instead something more like breathing—something that if we fail to do we die.

If we as a People fail to rid our communities of destructive institutions, those institutions will destroy our communities. And if we in our communities cannot provide meaningful and nondestructive ways for people to gain food, clothing, and shelter then we must recognize it’s not just specific destructive institutions but the entire economic system that is pushing the natural world past breaking points. Capitalism is killing the planet. Industrial civilization is killing the planet.

Once we’ve recognized the destructiveness of capitalism and industrial civilization—both of which are based on systematically converting a living planet into dead commodities—we’ve no choice, unless we wish to sign our own and our children’s death warrants, but to fight for all we’re worth and in every way we can to overturn it.

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  Read This Book:

Deep Green Resistance - Strategy to Save the Planet
Aric McBay, Lierre Keith, and Derrick Jensen

For years, Derrick Jensen has asked his audiences, “Do you think this culture will undergo a voluntary transformation to a sane and sustainable way of life?” No one ever says yes.

Deep Green Resistance starts where the environmental movement leaves off: industrial civilization is incompatible with life. Technology can’t fix it, and shopping—no matter how green—won’t stop it. To save this planet, we need a serious resistance movement that can bring down the industrial economy. Deep Green Resistance evaluates strategic options for resistance, from nonviolence to guerrilla warfare, and the conditions required for those options to be successful.

  Clicking on the book cover links to Deep Green Resistance website.

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They said it better than I could Dept.

War is a racket. It always has been. It is possibly the oldest, easily the most profitable, surely the most vicious. ~ General Smedley Butler

We may extend our dominion over the whole continent...but be assured it will be at the price of our free institutions. ~ Rep. William Waters Boyce

I hate war for its consequences, for the lies it lives on and propagates, for the undying hatreds it arouses... ~ Harry Emerson Fosdick

Before the war is ended, the war party assumes the divine right to denounce and silence all opposition to war as unpatriotic and cowardly. ~ Senator Robert M. La Follette

After every ''victory'' you have more enemies. ~ Jeanette Winterson

Our children are not born to hate, they are raised to hate. ~ Thomas della Peruta

Guard against the impostures of pretended patriotism. ~ George Washington

Patriotism means to stand by the country. It does not mean to stand by the president or any other public official... ~ Theodore Roosevelt

Only a free and unrestrained press can effectively expose deception in government. ~ Hugo Black, Supreme Court Justice

The life of the nation is secure only while the nation is honest, truthful, and virtuous. ~ Frederick Douglass

Everybody's worried about stopping terrorism. Well, there's a really easy way: stop participating in it. ~ Noam Chomsky

The belief in the possibility of a short decisive war appears to be one of the most ancient and dangerous of human illusions. ~ Robert Lynd

Those who give up essential liberties for temporary safety deserve neither liberty nor safety. ~ Benjamin Franklin

War doesn't make boys men, it makes men dead. ~ Ken Gillespie

We must not confuse dissent with disloyalty. When the loyal opposition dies, I think the soul of America dies with it. ~ Edward R. Murrow

It is unpatriotic not to tell the truth, whether about the president or anyone else. ~ Theodore Roosevelt

Paramount among the responsibilities of a free press is the duty to prevent any part of the government from deceiving the people... ~ Hugo Black, Supreme Court Justice

It is always more valuable to report the truth. ~ Jean-Paul Sartre

In times of universal deceit, telling the truth will be a revolutionary act. ~ George Orwell

In this war - as in others - I am less interested in honoring the dead than in preventing the dead. ~ Butler Shaffer

It is dangerous to be right when the government is wrong. ~ Voltaire

Look at you in war...There has never been a just one, never an honorable one, on the part of the instigator of the war. ~ Mark Twain

No nation could preserve its freedom in the midst of continual warfare. ~ James Madison

A state of war only serves as an excuse for domestic tyranny. ~ Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn

We will not learn how to live together in peace by killing each other's children. ~ Jimmy Carter

The dangerous patriot...is a defender of militarism and its ideals of war and glory. ~ Colonel James A. Donovan, Marine Corps

The cry has been that when war is declared, all opposition should be hushed. A sentiment more unworthy of a free country could hardly be propagated. ~ William Ellery Channing

...Uncalled-for aggression arouses the hatred of the civilian population... ~ Jean-Paul Sartre

War remains the decisive human failure. ~ John Kenneth Galbraith

That we are to stand by the president, right or wrong is not only unpatriotic and servile, but is morally treasonable to the American public. ~ Theodore Roosevelt

The spirit of resistance to government is so valuable on certain occasions, that I wish it to be always kept alive. ~ Thomas Jefferson

Unthinking respect for authority is the greatest enemy of truth. ~ Albert Einstein

I hate war...for the dictatorships it puts in the place of democracies, and for the starvation that stalks after it. ~ Harry Emerson Fosdick

War is a racket. It is the only one international in scope. It is the only one in which the profits are reckoned in dollars and the losses in lives. ~ General Smedley Butler

War is wretched beyond description, and only a fool or a fraud could sentimentalize its cruel reality. ~ Senator John McCain

Right is right, even if everyone is against it, and wrong is wrong, even if everyone is for it. ~ William Penn

May we never confuse honest dissent with disloyal subversion. ~ Dwight D. Eisenhower

Any forces that would impose their will on other nations will certainly face defeat. ~ General Vo Nguyen Giap

Every war when it comes, or before it comes, is represented not as a war but as an act of self-defense against a homicidal maniac. ~ George Orwell

Criticism in a time of war is essential to the maintenance of any kind of democratic government. ~ Sen. Robert Taft, (R) Ohio

The evils of government are directly proportional to the tolerance of the people. ~ Frank Kent

If there is one principle more deeply rooted in the mind of every American, it is that we should have nothing to do with conquest. ~ Thomas Jefferson

I love America more than any other country in the world and, exactly for this reason, I insist on the right to criticize her perpetually. ~ James Baldwin

There were no international terrorists in Iraq until we went in. It was we who gave the perfect conditions in which Al Qaeda could thrive. ~ Robin Cook

Each man must for himself alone decide what is right and what is wrong, which course is patriotic and which isn't. ~ Mark Twain

All men having power ought to be mistrusted. ~ James Madison

National defense is the usual pretext for the policy of fleecing the people. ~ Senator John Taylor

War is never economically beneficial except for those in position to profit from war expenditures. ~ Congressman Ron Paul

The people can always be brought to the bidding of the leaders...tell them they are being attacked, and denounce the peacemakers for lack of patriotism and exposing the country to danger. ~ Herman Goering

We Americans have no commission from God to police the world. ~ Benjamin Harrison

We will bankrupt ourselves in the vain search for absolute security. ~ Dwight D. Eisenhower

The biggest lesson I learned from Vietnam is not to trust [our own] government statements. ~ Senator James W. Fulbright

I'm afraid, based on my own experience, that fascism will come to America in the name of national security. ~ Jim Garrison

No matter that patriotism is too often the refuge of scoundrels. Dissent, rebellion, and all-around hell-raising remain the true duty of patriots. ~ Barbara Ehrenreich

You can no more win a war than you can win an earthquake. ~ Jeanette Rankin

All those who seek to destroy the liberties of a democratic nation ought to know that war is the surest and shortest means to accomplish it. ~ Alexis de Tocqueville

It is part of the general pattern of misguided policy that our country is now geared to an arms economy which was bred in an artificially induced psychosis of war hysteria and nurtured upon an incessant propaganda of fear. ~ General Douglas MacArthur

There is no flag large enough to cover the shame of killing innocent people. ~ Howard Zinn

All wars are fought for money. ~ Socrates

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