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Utopian restraint?
January 23rd, 2016
Utopian restraint?

   In a recent post (, I suggested that restraint  was key, even within a capitalist system!

   It seems restraint  would be a gate towards fairer distribution of wealth, and towards less harm (on many fronts, including social and political)… and should it be based on wise capitalism (efficient reduction of investment for equivalent output, instead of efficient increase of output for equivalent investment, when appropriate), this restraint could be without stifling innovation, and without some people (above —government— or sideways —peer-pressure) dictating for others what's good for them.

   Someone privately replied to me that it was utopia.
   However, I truly believe that most/all people have the potential to "awaken" (with the help of Buddhism or not!) to the consequences of their actions and therefore to their ethical (collective and  individual) responsibility. That this potential is commonly wasted doesn't imply it's not present: some might call it buddha-nature  (the absence of inherent, essential  blocking point between where we're at now and buddhahood), the possibility to find a way to live (more) wisely, whatever the current "starting point of the journey" is.
   Moreover, restraint  is not as unlikely to arise as an alternative way of life as some believe: for example, quite a few people currently review their eating habits and notably their meat consumption, in relation to the suffering involved as well as to the medical and environmental costs, and many of them are ready to adapt their consumption, on ethical grounds as well as for individual benefits. Quite a few people would chose an environmental-friendly product over another similar product, if given the choice… Many of these people, though, might come to realise that their meat consumption is not even the biggest suffering they cause in the world, and that how vegan food is packaged could well harm more sentient beings (including highly intelligent cetaceans) than 'reasoned' farming would, or that when they buy into "programmed obsolescence" and FOMO marketing, they support not only slavery in the poorer regions of the world but they also condone mindless waste and wide scale destructions of resources!

   I've written about it ( previously: for anyone interested in the welfare of others (be it out of unexamined compassion, philosophy, spirituality, secular ethics or humanism), a primary ethical behaviour is to reduce waste, i.e. to embody restraint  (independently of the economic system at hand, which is more about the allocation of resources —'planned' or 'free'— to meet a demand than about the demand itself).

by Rob Jongschaap:
By 2050, there will be more plastic than fish in the world’s oceans, study says - The Washington Post

'... But that quantity pales in comparison with the amount that the World Economic Forum expects will be floating into the oceans by the middle of the century.

If we keep producing (and failing to properly dispose of) plastics at predicted rates, plastics in the ocean will outweigh fish pound for pound in 2050, the nonprofit foundation said in a report Tuesday.

According to the report, worldwide use of plastic has increased 20-fold in the past 50 years, and it is expected to double again in the next 20 years. By 2050, we’ll be making more than three times as much plastic stuff as we did in 2014.