I wish we could rely on governments or companies or other institutions to be there for us. But increasingly we will not be able to. *We have to do it ourselves.*

Housing, community safety, cyclist/pedestrian infrastructure, local journalism, education, preventing drug overdoses, running social media…It is all up to us. There is no one else.

It's a dizzying realization. It's terrifying…but also incredibly empowering.

Does anyone else feel this way?


@nev yes.

It unfortunately took the pandemic and the uprising to realize it, but yes.

@nev governments are made of people, is one way I think about it sometimes
just people.
so yes

@t54r4n1 @nev Yeah, this is my perspective. Even at their best, governments don't know how to transition to a more just and sustainable system then the rest of us do. We need to explore this field ourselves, politicians who actually care will be supportive.

@alcinnz @t54r4n1 @nev I think it's worse than that. I think governments don't *want* to work towards it, and politicians who actually care will burn out fast from the institutional pushback.

@Cassandra @t54r4n1 @nev Probably depends on where you are. But in most cases, probably.

@nev No. Still not over the "terrifying" part. Starting to feel a little hopeful, but still lacking sufficient imagination to be able to conjure up any idea of what this future world might look like.

@nev not sure when it clicked for me, probably after i left academia and had to justify to myself the utility of community biolabs/hackerspaces in a world with better resourced labs. But I don't make a strong distinction between institutions and *us*, instead I think of institutions/organisations as tools for us to reconstitute a society that is more responsive to a greater number of people's needs :MagicWand:

@nev definitely, my understanding is that pretty much any/all government action in those areas is after community initiatives and then popular demand / action!

@nev Absolutely. In private convos with my friends/family, I've stated that running for office is a waste of time UNLESS you are passionate about government/policy work.

Seems like most politicians are merely hired "muscle" for corporations. Lobbying is just legal bribery with sprinkles.

So then, seems like the best way to be effective, to do work that'll help the rest of us in the near- AND long-term is to just do it ourselves. It sucks in one, why elect these fools?


@nev i'm very agree on this. much relate. and yeah, the pandemic was my breaking point for any chance i'd held out that current power structures are going to be at all up to the tasks ahead.

@nev I think that the democratic ideal of government *is* us taking care of ourselves. But we live in a society where government/institutions are controlled by a small sliver of people and used for the oppression of everyone else. It is not us and never has been, despite what we were taught in school.

When we take steps to support our community, we are creating those institutions ourselves, replacing the gov imposed on us with one that actually is us.

Not a government example but this one always gets me:

Shopping carts. There's a range of rationalizations that are made as to why it's fine to leave the shopping cart wherever but it falls under "someone else can do it". Usually stray shopping carts also encourage littering because, "well it's clearly someone else's job when they get the shopping carts".

But, when everyone is expecting someone else to do the work everything becomes a mess and encourages more of that behavior.


@nev There will, of course, be people who genuinely cannot return the cart.

And there will be employees who enjoy working outside gathering the carts.

But, the point is, even if it is someone else's job you are adding to that workload. And when a whole society expects that someone else will do the work it overburdens that person/institution/company/government even when they are truly passionate about doing the thing.


@nev What's terrifying is that companies and government would prefer to sell you on the idea that they can take it all on while not being honest about the amount of work and money that's necessary to actually accomplish the task.

This over promising/under delivery has us all rationalizing why the thing can't happen.

But, many situations are like the shopping cart issue. We have the capacity to do our part to lessen the mess.


@nev Not that we can tackle everything but the more involved we are in the solutions, the more we can target resources to the problems that require larger solutions from entities that are streamlined for that work.

But, that honesty requires a lot more hands on oversight.

My mom taught me to put away shopping carts. I've been shocked how many people don't and it's very much that thing that shows a lot about a community's willingness to do other things so yeah...

Rant over

@nev Yes. I'm definitely scared, but I also know we don't have a choice. I don't know where to start, but I guess the answer is to just start somewhere.

@nev no, because the ourselves we depend on becomes small groups paying money into one person or a small group who are actually competent and whoops, look, that's what government is.

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