Abby Martin talks about the crackdown on individuals who choose to live ‘Off the Grid’ citing a examples such as a man in Oregon who faced jail-time for collecting rainwater and a Florida woman who was forced to re-connect to the state’s electrical grid.
Tag Archives | off the grid
This is one way to start your life all over again. Via The Local:
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The young man who became world famous as the “Forest Boy” when he claimed he had lived feral in German woods for five years – agreed to carry out 150 hours of community service on Thursday after admitting making it all up. Berlin authorities charged him with fraud after spending €30,000 looking after him before his identity and age were revealed.
“Ray” became a global story in September 2011 after turning up at Berlin’s city hall and asking for help. He told astounded officials he had been living in the woods for five years with his father, sleeping in huts and living off the land. He said he no longer knew who he was nor where he was from – and that after his father died in a fall.
“Ray” stuck to his story for months and even attracted the attention of one couple who said he was their long lost son.
A tragic story of going off the grid Robinson Crusoe-style in response to the horrors of war, via the BBC:
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A Vietnamese father and his son who fled to the jungle during the Vietnam War four decades ago have been persuaded to leave, officials say. Ho Van Lang and his 82-year-old father fled to the jungle after being traumatised when three family members were killed by a landmine.
For most of their time in the jungle their whereabouts was unknown. They were discovered living in dense foliage in central Quang Ngai province and were barely able to communicate.
While in the jungle, the pair wore only loincloths and used a homemade axe to chop down trees. They survived on corn, fruits and cassava roots from the jungle. They lived in a tree house, five metres above ground, where they kept arrows for hunting and knives for killing animals.
The older man kept his military trousers neatly folded in a corner as well as the little red coat his son was thought to have been wearing when they fled.
Wendy Jehanara Tremayne was living a fast-paced life as a New York City publicist, but something was missing. To find it, she embarked on a journey that began with performance art and activism and ended as a DIY maker and artist living off the grid with Truth or Consequences, NM. The Good Life Lab: Radical Experiments in Hands-On Living is her new book.
In the coming years, expect living in the tunnel cities with the outlaws, rejects, and copper bandits to become an increasingly popular lifestyle option. From Kansas City’s KMBC:
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Kansas City police uncovered an underground suburb used by the homeless on the city’s northeast side. KMBC’s Haley Harrison reported that a homeless outreach group said it was unlike anything they’ve ever seen. The subterranean refuge has caves and tunnels.
Police were evicting the homeless because of the squalid conditions. “We’re working to find out if in fact they’ve got kids down here because this is not a safe environment for that,” Cooley said.
Cooley told Harrison that he first went to the area because of a rash of crime. Police said copper thieves have repeatedly struck a nearby grain mill, most recently swiping a valuable piece of equipment and now millions of dollars worth of grain is in danger of going bad.
Is our reliance on GPS and mobile devices maps making us increasingly disoriented and oblivious? To me, the relevant aspect of this story is not that Apple’s map app is flawed, but that numerous people would drive to a remote, dangerous desert just because their smartphone told them to. Via Newser:
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Apple’s much-maligned mapping system is so flawed that motorists who rely on it run the risk of ending up dead in the wilderness, Australia police warn. Over the last few weeks, six motorists have become stranded in Victoria state’s Murray Sunset National Park when following the map app’s directions to a city more than 40 miles away, CNET reports. Some iPhone users were stranded in the park for two hours without enough food and water.
Police in the area have urged drivers to rely on other forms of mapping. “Police are extremely concerned as there is no water supply within the park,” they said in a statement, warning that temperatures in the park could reach 115 degrees Fahrenheit, making the map problem “a potentially life-threatening issue.” Apple has yet to comment on the issue.
The New York Times examines the booming business of selling preparedness for societal breakdown, with more and more Americans worried that civilization may be on the verge of collapse in the wake of major hurricanes, blackouts, financial crisis, Iran building the bomb, et cetera. The irony is that the movement’s proponents are so obsessed with “getting ready” for the end of everything that in a sense they have already given up on our world:
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The preparedness industry, always prosperous during hard times, is thriving again now. In Ron Douglas’s circles, people talk about “the end of the world as we know it” with such regularity that the acronym Teotwawki has come into widespread use.
The goal isn’t just to sell to the same old preparedness crowd. Red Shed wants to attract liberals and political moderates to a marketplace historically populated by conservatives and right-wing extremists. It’s about showing the gun-toting mountain man in his camouflage and the suburban soccer mom in her minivan that they want the same thing: peace of mind.
“There, but for the grace of God, go I” goes the old canard, usually in reference to a disheveled homeless person, dressed in rags sitting on a street corner begging for change and smelling of b.o.
What you are seeing is the result not of homelessness, per se, but dysfunctionality in general, due to substance abuse, mental illness and a host of other contributing factors.
You may see homeless people everyday and never suspect them. Conversely, that panhandler on the street corner may not be homeless at all. But, perhaps, you have that fear in the back of your mind that such a fate could happen to you. Maybe you work a crappy job, living from pay check to paycheck “one paycheck away from living on the street” or maybe you remain in an abusive relationship in exchange for the security of a place to live. Perhaps you find yourself making the choices you feel forced to make rather than the ones you want to make.… Read the rest
A half-naked man living in a cave in a canyon outside El Paso, Texas, scared a group of hikers on Sunday when they say he jumped out of the cave and chased them away. One of the hikers returned to the cave and spoke with the man, capturing footage on his cellphone. Residents of an apartment complex at the foot of McKelligon Canyon say the man has been living in the cave for about three years. "Normally, he's like wandering around," [said] one resident. The cave dweller defended his right to live in the cave: "What is my crime? I'm sin-free in every city. I'm baptized and saved. [My detractors] need to worry about their own selves, to repent and help the community more."
Via Utah’s KSL, has the anthropomorphic furry lifestyle been taken vastly too far?
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A man spotted dressed in a goat suit among a herd of wild goats in the mountains of northern Utah has wildlife officials worried he could be in danger as hunting season approaches. Phil Douglass of the Utah Division of Wildlife Resources said Friday the person is doing nothing illegal, but he worries the so-called “goat man” is unaware of the dangers.
Douglass said a man hiking Sunday along Ben Lomond peak in the mountains above Ogden, about 40 miles north of Salt Lake City, spotted the person dressed like a goat among a herd of real goats. The person provided some blurry photographs to Douglass, who said they did not appear to have been altered.
Douglass said wildlife officials received an anonymous call Thursday from an “agitated man” after the sighting was reported in local media.