CollapseNet’s First Documentary Film, “Vegas – Glimmers In The Desert”
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May 10 2010, 1200 PDT, SEBASTOPOL – For more than thirty years I have worked tirelessly as an author and investigative journalist. (Not counting the day jobs.) The last two of those years have been dedicated to Collapsenet and its mission of alerting and preparing people around the world for events we all now recognize and which no longer need explanation.
The load has been heavy, requiring my attention seven days a week, sometimes more than 12 hours a day. And as that load has been heavy, so has the necessary business of managing cash flows effectively in vastly uncertain economic conditions. There's the business, and then there's the business of the business.
Recently, several things became clear more or less at the same time. From my perspective, my day-to-day ingestion and analysis of as many as eighty news stories and videos was less and less useful. In the last two months I have arrived at a clear awareness of multiple “systemic” failures in human civilization which cannot possibly be reversed in this world as it currently operates and approaches crises. Those include economic and climatological conditions, Peak Oil, the killing of the Gulf of Mexico, and the ongoing, uncontrolled nuclear disaster at Fukushima which is now recognized as the single greatest immediate threat to human existence. My country is an open fascist state and the Constitution I was taught to revere is a rotting, gutted corpse -- roadkill on the oil-paved highway of infinite growth.
For those who have followed me for many years, and read the “map” I have constructed through my writings, you will recognize that in a real-life contextual sense, we have reached the end of my map. Our Mother Earth, humankind and every species that lives here is about to enter incomprehensibly uncharted territory. Whenever I have entered the wildernesses of my life, I have gone alone and that is the way I must travel now.
For years I have longed to be relieved of this duty of living in and documenting the horrors of this world every day to give guidance and analysis. However, I felt it my duty to pursue that as long as required. At the same time, while I was working seven days a week, it was essential that I be paid for that work. When we started the company, two eventful years ago, the board of directors approved a starting salary for me based upon what I needed to cover rent and essentials. Then, last year and this, as the company suffered under months of intense cyber attacks our income was slashed. As the economy deteriorated a great many loyal members wrote to us in sadness that they could no longer afford even $10 a month.
Collapsenet still carries them and a great many activist and leaders for free. We have established a deep reach among the builders of the new paradigm.
On many occasions I took little or no pay. Wes Miller and Luis Mora (our Operations Manager, now C.O.O.) got next to nothing for months in order to leave enough for those in the most need. All of us went without at times. All of us gave back. About six months ago I voluntarily reduced my pay and in only two of the months since have I actually taken a full salary. We found that we were all working harder for less.
These financial strains and a major health crisis affecting one of our founding members recently placed the company in jeopardy of imminent failure. As I write, that fate is happening to tens of thousands of companies and their employees around the world. Stepping back and looking at the problem it became clear what the solution was.
I will remain as a Vice President and Secretary/Treasurer but only in an inactive role. From time to time I will make contributions and offer advice but this is a move that needs to be clear and well-defined for the new C.E.O., Wes Miller and his staff to have a fair and healthy shot at making it on their own.
The company, relieved of my salary, has a breather financially. It has also gained renewed motivation (which is essential) for the people who are Collapsenet to evolve it, and to have a personal stake in its future. They have worked tirelessly and they have earned their ownership with blood, sweat and tears. Jenna Orkin, Rice Farmer and Carolyn Baker will continue doing what they have done tirelessly and selflessly for so many years now, making sure that Collapsenet members continue to receive the same high-quality news, feature writing and commentary they have come to expect and rely on.
All in all, this was the best thing I could do to help. And I have been longing to go deeper in the pursuit of my spiritual understanding of (and approach to) these times. I am going to start writing my third book and move more towards obtaining my income from my own lifeboat, in my own community, on my own. After all these years of living in the realm of news and analysis I can truly say that I am feeling an enormous sense of personal relief. I can go visit and spend time in that other side of my brain for a while. I am being called to other things and I am listening to my heart, as I always have when the biggest moments presented themselves.
I want to personally thank all of the members who have been so kind with donations to help us through many very serious challenges, not the least of which was a months-long cyber attack from last summer through March.Costly upgrades were made by our amazing IT staff to harden the site. These efforts are proving successful. Your generosity and love have been deeply appreciated by all of us. And now you can be sure that Collapsenet will continue. If I have not personally thanked all of you in writing, please accept my apology for that as there were only so many hours in a day and only so much money for writing and stamps. But the presence of a new, vibrant and evolved Collapsenet should be the result you wanted.
And to every single Collapsenet staff member and volunteer, let me say that it has been an honor and a privilege to work with you. You have humbled me on many occasions with the heart you have shown when things needed to be done. This is now your company. You have earned it. And I release you all with love and best wishes for the turbulent future that awaits. It is my prayer that you will be wildly successful in everything and that you will continue to provide the essential information that has made Collapsenet a mover and shaker on this very troubled planet… at a very troubled time.
A part of me believes, no it knows, that somehow, some way, a new Golden Age is coming. Its screams of birth are the screams that we hear now, as the pain, suffering, death and confusion of collapse visit every nation and hearth on earth. Before a new house -- one that includes a safe place for all life -- can be built, the old one -- the one that is sick, putrid, corrupt and dying -- must be completely destroyed and defeated. It will achieve the fulfillment of its death wish. It will be satisfied with nothing less. There is no easier, softer way. Embrace the death of the old that you may experience, participate in, and rejoice in the birth of the new.
From my view this is, and always has been, spiritual warfare... and nothing less. I never thought I would live to see these times. Now I am able to enter them as a coherent, integrated soul, hopefully reflecting and spreading the light we will all see when we finally reach the Hundredth Monkey.
Pass the popcorn.
Michael C. Ruppert
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