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[at-l] Edward Abbey Fans->Hiking Fuel

WARNING!  Extremely conservative material follows . . . proceed at the risk
of your own enlightenment . . .

Why I hike . . . 

The value of wilderness, on the other hand, as a base for resistance to
centralized domination is demonstrated by recent history.  
. . . in Cuba, Algeria and Vietnam the revolutionaries, operating in
mountain, desert and jungle hinterlands with the active or tacit support of
a thinly dispersed population, have been able to overcome or at least fight
to a draw official establishment forces equipped with all the terrible
weapons of twentieth century militarism.  
. . . Suppose we were planning to impose a dictatorial regime regime upon
the American people---the following preparations would be essential:

1) Concentrate the populace in Megalopolitan masses so that they can be
kept under close surveillance and where, in case of trouble, they can be
bombed, burned, gassed or machine-gunned with a minimum of expense and

2) Mechanize agriculture to the highest degree of refinement, thus forcing
most of the scattered farm and ranching populations into the cities.  Such
a policy is desirable because farmers, woodsmen, cowboys, Indians,
fishermen and other relatively self-sufficient types are difficult to
manage unless displaced from their natural environment.

3) Restrict the possession of firearms to the police and regular military

4) Encourage or at least fail to discourage population growth.  Large
masses of people are more easily manipulated and dominated than scattered

5) Continue military conscription.  Nothing excels military training for
creating in young men an attitude of prompt, cheerful obedience to
officially constituted authority.

6) Divert attention from deep conflicts within the society by engaging in
foreign wars; make support of these wars a test of loyalty, thereby
exposing and isolating potential opposition to the new order.

7) Overlay the nation with a finely reticulated network of communications,
airlines and interstate autobahns.

8) Raze the wilderness.  Dam the rivers, flood the canyons, drain the
swamps, log the forests, strip-mine the hills, bulldoze the mountains,
irrigate the deserts and improve the national parks into national parking
_Dessert_Solitaire:_A_Season_in_the_Wilderness_  149-151

Happy Trails,

Thanks for the poetry and philosophy . . . Guiness, Anyone?

Back to LURKING . . . 
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