From HERB RUHS
I don’t know why I end up defending Derrick Jensen (Beyond Hope). He is pretty good at that himself.
What I observe is that folks who read Jensen enthusiastically uniformly fail to understand him and that those who react badly to him are understanding him at a level they are compelled to deny in their conscious thoughts. The things that we don’t like about ourselves annoy us most in others. I think of Jensen as like a real life Ender from Card’s novel Ender’s Game. Like Ender he is unavoidably flooded with reality while all around him are sleep walkers. Being awake while participating in “civilized life” can be excruciating and causes sufferers to flee to monasteries and hermitages, but some brave souls like Jensen choose to stay involved and end up calling themselves activist. No greater gift than from those who confront insanity directly.
Also, like Ender in subsequent Card novels, Jensen is a “speaker for the dead.” In this case he speaks for the extinct and soon to be extinct. He speaks eloquently of the unbearable sadness of being a member of a suicidal and murderous species. This is such a hard task that few even dare to do it, and no one I am aware of does it as eloquently as Jensen, who I relate to as a poet rather than as primarily a nonfiction writer (though fact is the raw material of his tragic poetry).
Most people with any degree of emotional and intellectual maturity are aware that what bothers them most about others is what they deny about themselves. We hate people who remind us of parts of ourselves we hide. So it is with Jensen. Not only is he a hero for treading where angels fear but he is speaking with such an original voice that criticism has no purchase for lack of comparisons. This is the meaning of the oft misused term “incomparable” which has been bastardized in popular speech as a mere superlative.
That said, although I cite the same facts, I am what I like to call a “happy doomer” as opposed to Jensen’s “unhappy doomer” approach. Happy, not because of the things Jensen cites, the evident beauty of life itself and the continually amazing Universe in which life lives, but because of doom itself. I sometimes ask folks exactly what part of modern life they would like to save from the forces of doom. Outside of the usual references to loved ones, art and music I find that there is virtually nothing of the current arrangement that we casually call “civilization” that people really want to save. QED, doom is a good thing since it represents the wiping away of so much that is bad, life hating and ugly.
My program is to try to recruit people to manifest high altitude nuclear explosions. I began this when I learned of the experience of Wiccan groups in England that had been being successful in manifesting improvements at certain crime ridden corners and neighborhoods by coordinating the visualization of goodness in those places. Just a few people causing relatively vast amounts of good caught my attention. Since that time I have been recruiting folks to join me for a brief moment at noon each day (I have an awful time remembering if I don’t set and alarm) to visualize a series of high altitude (two hundred or so miles up) nuclear explosions. This is moving rapidly to actuality since the primitive nuclear powers in Pakistan and North Korea are being pressured by high tech militaries, and, when this comes to a head, their best defense is to set these things off a couple of hundred miles up to create an ElectroMagnetic Pulse (EMP) to degrade the high tech electronics of their attackers. So maybe it is working. It is beginning to seem sort of inevitable so I am being a happier doomer by the day. I am SOOO ready for the industrial cancer that afflicts life on earth to crumble and leave us to fend for ourselves in more life affirming ways.
If I was too brief about this (for the sake of space) please seek clarification. I am not kidding about this. I am EXPECTING, not hoping, that soon we will be liberated from technological mass insanity. Therefore I am a HAPPY DOOMER.