We know a lot, but much of what we know is that we do not know.
We must investigate deeper. We must learn more about the implications of the information we have. We must learn more about how to see to it that beneficial behaviors and systems get implemented at appropriate rates commensurate to our goals both as individuals and for society at large.
It appears we have reached a point where we know what must be done, but do not do it. So let’s do what must be done.
As an organization, the Better Earth Institute has contributed to information campaigns based on our investigation of where personal interest intersects with common benefit for the purposes of making implementation of superior behaviors and systems more common.
We look for the decisions people are actually willing to make instead of simply painting a picture of an ideal world or describe a supposed model of ethical behavior. We believe that ethics and morals come with true benefits to such an extent that almost any “selfish” person with a shred of foresight or chance at life mastery would realize they will yield the highest returns on the most socially helpful actions.
That said, it appears that most people are not looking to re-invent their lives or deeply examine their personal morality or ethics in a world where externalities of economic exchanges are deliberately obscured both by producers and consumers. We here assume that people don’t want to know if the food they buy has been poisoned, nor if it poisoned the workers or the village, or the water, or the air, or the soil. They don’t want to know to avoid their own dissonance about potentially harming their bodies, and they don’t want to know so that they can have plausible deniability about contributing to something that harms others.
So what do we do?
We simply advocate for actions that we believe to be inherently beneficial to the individual who undertakes them and we look for actions that people can actually take. We don’t just write a 400 page book on esoteric discoveries on nutrition, but rather make simple flashy advertisements for organic fruit. Or we help communities organize their purchases to decrease cost. Or we teach cooking classes. Or we hand out organic food to the public and direct them to sources for more information.
And we keep working.
We keep looking for ways to influence. We keep looking to improve our communication and help others who aim to do the same.