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Byron Shire
March 26, 2023

Do machines liberate or enslave us?

Latest News

Janelle Saffin holds the seat of Lismore

Janelle Saffin is in the lead for the seat of Lismore after yesterday's state election. Although preroll and postal votes are yet to be counted, it’s hard to imagine Saffin’s position changing.

Other News

Could Tweed Hospital see the first patient cannabis consumption room?

Marc Selan of the Legalise Cannabis Party is keen to keep the old Tweed Hospital open and says he would like to see the first patient cannabis consumption room at that site. 

Byron’s chocoholics’ Easter destination

The Love Byron Bay boutique has been specialising in unique cocoa encounters for nearly a decade now. In this...

Over $61 million to fix flood damaged roads in Tweed

As the flood 2022 bills come rolling in for Tweed Shire Council (TSC) it has become apparent that almost half of the $125 million total repair bill will be spent on repairing landslides that have impacted access routes. 

 Uki Refugee Project and Mt St Pat’s join forces for refugees

The Mount Saint Patrick College in Murwillumbah held an assembly of 850 students, teaching staff and members of the Uki Refugee Project to officially open their new sports house called Romero House – in honour of Saint Romero.

Swimming champs Sydney bound for finals

Congratulations to Wilsons Creek Public School students Ruby, Eddie, Goldie and Ayla, who have made it to the state swimming finals, to be held in Sydney at the end of the term. 

We all live in a magic submarine…

Several commentators have remarked that, while the mainstream media is locked in furious agreement with the government over AUKUS and the trillion dollar submarines (a guess at the final price tag), social and independent media are telling quite a different tale.

Geoff Dawe, Uki

Charlie Chaplin heard that Mahatma Gandhi disapproved of the conventional view of machinery. In 1931 Charlie suggested to the Mahatma in regard to machinery “… it should help to release man from the bondage of slavery, and give him shorter hours of labour and time to improve his mind and enjoy life.” (Gandhi: First Sight, Thomas Weber (ed.))

This view, shared by the whole of the West, of the usefulness of machinery is not well thought out. There is no proof that humans experience bondage without machinery. Traditional Australian Indigenous people did not feel enslaved despite mostly eschewing machinery. Moreover, tribal, pre-literate peoples did not work as many hours as the civilised. It is for example common, for some civilised, modern households to work 16-hour days!

The ability to improve one’s mind and enjoy life does not suddenly occur with the advent of machinery. A working life can be enjoyed provided it is not arduous and there is no reason why a human mind cannot be stimulated by humane work.

Reduction in arduousness is dependent on people using human smarts to minimally but adequately supply food, clothing and shelter, rather than particularly, machinery.

The reason why many of the civilised feel enslaved is that they demand excessive stuff in the hope it will bring happiness.

After 10,000 years of civilisations, the civilised are still to remember that contentment comes primarily from within. It is related to the sociability that the civilised have turned their backs on, in favour of materialism and an obsessive concern for the economic.

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