A Cross-post from Fine Lines

What is and what is not ephemeral?

We’ve been getting this wrong consistently and over an increasingly wide range of situations. We treat long-lived phenomena as though they were fleeting. We treat merely passing blips as permanent conditions. We design and build structures that should last centuries with ever-shorter useful life-spans. We’ve done this intentionally.  We’ve rationalized ill-considered and one-dimensional design as the vehicles of “artistic” self-expression, and rewarded shoddy and slapdash construction, calling this savvy “economic efficiencies.” As a result we’ve made things to meet uses and conditions that just will not persist.

This unplanned obsolescence overlays an astonishingly intentional planned obsolescence that treats localities, structures, and the social and environmental fabric they disrupt, with a contempt that is psychopathic and should be considered criminal. We use up tremendous resources, human and natural, in their creation and upkeep. They disrupt environments and displace natural features and biota that do have truly lasting value.

Continue reading at Fine Lines.

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