Kick-Ass Korten

In October 2006, David Korten gave a speech to the Veterans for Peace called “The Great Turning”, derived from his book of the same name. This lecture is full of insights about the plight of humans today, as well as the options we can take to alleviate some of the problems that plague our world.

The “great turning” refers to what Korten predicts will be the collapse of the current empire of (mostly American) corporations and military, and how it will be replaced by an establishment of a global community, based on egalitarian, locally based economies. Heres a few paraphrased points that he makes:

  • We should stop wasting our resources and our lives on warfare and the quest for global dominance and instead work towards making the world a better place for ourselves and our children.
  • The U.S. is not a real democracy… the entire system is a farce designed by rich, white slave-keeping land-owners who wanted to secure their position. If the American people want democracy, they will need to take their political system to a place it has never been before.
  • The U.S. military has consistently been used to protect or advance commercial interests unrelated to the security of the U.S.
  • Violence and greed in adults are pathological disorders caused by Imperialist cultures and institutions. And those who exhibit these behaviours the most are rewarded with power, and this only serves to perpetuate the myth that these traits are divine.
  • He mentions how the perceived necessity of economic inequality, the required use of oppressive force, and the righteousness of those in power are all fabricated myths instilled into society to perpetuate the status quo.

The solutions he suggests are:

  • Speak out against the injustices… speak the truth about the fabricated myths, and break the cycle of indoctrination and imperialism.
  • Realize that despite the U.S. being polarized politically, the majority of Americans share key values, and that the U.S. is indeed a nation that shares the same goals.
  • We have the power. We are the generation we have been waiting for.

I feel that many of the ideas he presents are worthy of repeating to a wider audience, so I took the liberty of taking some prime sound clips and splicing them together with some visuals. Here is the final product:

The original 27 minute lecture can be found by clicking here.

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