Friday, October 22, 2010


The infrastructural linchpins, the system’s nodes of vulnerability, fall into two general classes: physical and psychological.

The physical targets are fairly obvious: the various structures supporting energy production and communication.  And many of these structures are entirely exposed.  In the US, for example, there has been a lot of effort directed at protecting high-visibility terrorist targets.  Fortunately, the goals of terrorism and the goal of dismantling civilization are not commensurate.  Terrorists are all about shock and awe.  Terrorists are not interested in change of a truly fundamental sort.  Terrorists want to change the system in ways that suit their interests.  They are not interested in eliminating the system itself (Sadly, this is as true for most eco-terrorists as it is for Islamic extremists).  Because of this, some of the most vulnerable gears in the machine are left unguarded. 

As just one example, consider that the majority of power plants are coal-fired and that the coal is supplied to these plants by rail lines that travel though land that is both easily accessible and unguarded.  Suppose that a group of loosely organized individuals took it upon themselves to disrupt the coal supply to several power plants simultaneously.  How many rail lines would have to be disabled and for how long?

The psychological targets are less obvious.  The global corporate system is ultimately a system for organizing human behavior, and in some ways the psychological infrastructure of civilization will be more difficult to dismantle.  Corporate marketing has pretty much cornered the market on propaganda, so, although it is essential to attack on multiple fronts, direct attempts to change people’s attitudes will likely meet with limited success. 

Here is where we need to be creative.

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