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´╗┐Title: Down with the Cities
Author: Nakashima, Tadashi, 1920-
Language: English
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Copyright Status: Not copyrighted in the United States. If you live elsewhere check the laws of your country before downloading this ebook. See comments about copyright issues at end of book.

*** Start of this Doctrine Publishing Corporation Digital Book "Down with the Cities" ***

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DOWN WITH THE CITIES!


By

Nakashima Tadashi



Copyright (c) 1996 By Nakashima Tadashi



Translation from the Japanese of "Toshi wo Horobose," first
serialized in the periodical Kankyo Hakai, reprinted in 1992 in
book form by the Japan Communal Society Association, and
republished as a commercially available book in 1994 by Maijisha
Publishing Co. This translation is of the earliest version, and
does not reflect subsequent updates, additions, and changes by
the author.


the translator from all concerned parties.  This translation is
to be distributed freely throughout the world to anyone at all,
and is not to be sold for commercial profit.


Mr. Nakashima (born 1920) is a self-sufficient farmer in the
hill country of Gifu Prefecture, Japan. He entered the Army in
1939, and was in Taiwan at the end of the war. In 1945 he
returned to his family farm and began farming.  In 1954 Mr.
Nakashima began raising free-range chickens, and embarked on the
long process of developing his method of producing "natural
eggs," for which he is now well known in Japan. About 1975 he
started studying the writings of the Edo Period thinker Ando
Shoeki. He has also written a book entitled "Minomushi Kakumei --
Dokuritsu Noumin no Sho" (The Bagworm Revolution -- A Book for
Independent Farmers).  The author has also written and published
extensively on free-range chicken farming.


The order of Japanese personal names follows East Asian custom:
surname followed by given name.


Some footnotes are the author's, and others are the
translator's.  The latter are identified by the notation
"(Translator's note)" at the end of those footnotes.

==================================================
==================================================

PREAMBLE



Saying "Down with the cities!" is not a rash statement. If we do
not get rid of the cities, the human race will disappear from
the face of the Earth. The cities are none other than the source
of all pollution, and the root of all evil. One may try to leave
the cities as they are and get rid of only the pollution, but it
will be wasted effort. Environmental destruction and pollution
are caused by none other than the functioning of the urban
machine; pollution is, we may say, the unavoidable respiratory
function, metabolic function, and bowel movements of the cities.
If we plug up the nose, mouth, and anus of a human being, is it
possible to continue living? Therefore, if we are to banish urban
pollution from the Earth, we must eliminate the cities
themselves.


CHAPTER I

Urban Sprawl

The cities are spreading out like amoebae. No matter what part of
the world, and no matter what kind of political or economic
system, the expansion of the cities is more than apparent
wherever you look. If urbanization continues in this manner, the
entire surface of the Earth will in time be covered with cities.


I should explain that by urbanization I do not mean merely the
spread of what we normally call "cities." In urbanization I
include interurban buildups, those along train lines and roads,
housing developments, tourist facilities at resorts, rural
factories, and a host of other things. We must also consider the
buildups in the centers of villages, and asphalt roads in (what
is mistakenly considered to be) the boondocks as a kind of
urbanization. In other words, the city is not just something that
we distinguish from the country by region alone; we must also
make a clear distinction in accordance with differences in
industries (that is, class). To wit, the city is a place that is
home to the secondary and tertiary industries, or is a place
where the employees of such industries dwell. No matter how far
back in the sticks one goes, if one finds anything relating to
the secondary or tertiary industries -- such as public facilities
or concrete river bank walls -- such a place must also be
recognized as the city.


Let us then examine the reasons for the unbounded, continuous
expansion of the cities.

Reason One

Throughout the entire world, in no matter what country,
"modernization" is the glorious banner under which all people
gather. If something is done under the name of modernization, it
is considered good, and if it stands in the way of modernization,
it is automatically evil. Modernization: Expressed in different
terms it is the prosperity of the secondary and tertiary
industries. [1] And since these industries are based in the
cities, modernization means urbanization.


Right now, all around the world, increasing numbers of people
are, with the aim of achieving modernization, engaging in the
secondary and tertiary industries, and that is why we witness the
further, inevitable expansion of the cities. As long as
modernization is not negated as an evil, urbanization will
continue unabated.

Reason Two

Modernization -- if we look at this in another way we see that it
is the pursuit of Convenience, Extravagance, and Ease; it
signifies the ceaseless advance toward infinite prosperity.


And the pursuit of convenience, extravagance, and ease is none
other than an expression of instinctual human greed -- we want to
have it easier and eat more delectable cuisine, we want to do
more stimulating things, we want objects that are rarer and more
beautiful. Thus the secondary and tertiary industries, in
manufacturing and supplying us with festivals and entertainment
and trinkets and gewgaws, are able to scale the heights of
prosperity, and the cities thereby continue their boundless
expansion.

Reason Three

There is one other abettor of urbanization that we must not
overlook: the bewitching power of the money economy. In order to
make more money, the city manufactures more merchandise than
necessary, and forces services down our throats. Charged with the
economic mission known as the Pursuit of Profit, the secondary
and tertiary industries work hard at money making, and this too
leads to the expansion of the cities.


The above three elements -- (1) a national policy of
modernization, i.e., urbanization; (2) the instinctive desire of
human beings for prosperity, i.e., urbanization; (3) the Pursuit
of Profit, which propels the secondary and tertiary industries to
make more and more money, i.e., urbanization -- combine to cause
the increasing spread of the cities. This is symbolized in, for
example, the construction industry.


Urbanization is, in more concrete terms, the covering of
everything with concrete. Whether buildings or roads or
riverbanks or seashores, the rule of thumb in modern times is to
make it out of concrete. There are, to be sure, occasional pea
gravel gardens or dirt playing fields in the cities, but these
are few and far between. Cities are made by smothering the ground
with concrete. Indeed, the city can be understood as construction
itself.

Never-Ending Construction

The world is full of construction officials, who, if they cannot
plan some kind of project, are capable of nothing but yawning;
the proprietors of construction companies, who, in order to make
money, cannot rest from their labors for a minute; the pitiful
part-time farmers who pay back their loans by engaging in
construction work; the proprietors of cement and gravel companies
who will be in a pickle if they cannot get someone to use the
tons of building materials they have made; the truckers and the
dealers in construction machinery and fuel for them; the big shot
politicians like Tanaka Kakuei whose life work is pork barrel;
the idiotic voters who weep for joy over the services brought in
by construction (that is, urbanization)... With an arrangement
like this, it is almost assured that, even if the vast oceans dry
up, there will always be construction going on in the world. At
this rate, it will not be that far in the future before they are
carrying out construction work among the peaks of the Himalayas.


There are some who will say, "Come now, they wouldn't go so far
as to do such unnecessary work in the Himalayas," but if this is
so, then when all the construction work in the world has been
completed and there is no more to be done, is it possible to
think that the Ministry of Construction will disband itself, that
the construction companies will go belly up, that the cement
companies will close down, or that the part-time farmers will
hang themselves? There is no doubt that when such a time comes
they will carry out needless construction work like covering over
the peaks of the Himalayas with concrete. There will be no end to
construction work, and consequently the urbanization of the
Earth's surface will continue until the ground disappears
entirely. [2]


Even now, in every place imaginable, they are building solid
concrete walls in places where, they think, perhaps once in a
thousand years there will be a landslide; they needlessly dig up
bamboo groves which will most assuredly not be washed away, and
stack up concrete blocks. There are instances in which by merest
chance, such a place is visited by natural disaster, and they
take the matter to court saying that it is the government's
oversight. In actuality, however, the authorities, whom one would
expect to be bitter over losing the case, are smiling
contentedly. This is because the government has obtained proof of
the need to pour astronomical sums of money into a totally
needless construction project, the excuse being that one never
knows when disaster will strike. Though the government and the
construction companies openly plan and carry out needless
construction projects everywhere so the contractors can profit,
there is little fear that the citizens will ever take them to
court over any of it.


In addition, the government uses construction projects to
stimulate the economy. Using construction bonds as a convenient
cover, it spurts out wads of money (merely in order to make it
circulate a little better), dig up our precious land, and cover
it over with concrete. [3] Why must they go to such lengths to
stimulate the economy? It is for no other reason than to
facilitate the even greater activities of the secondary and
tertiary industries, which results in the waste, contamination,
and destruction of the city.

Chapter I Notes

1

It is possible to modernize agriculture (a primary industry) as
well, but this becomes possible only with the intervention of
the secondary and tertiary industries. Agriculture is meant to be
in accord with the cycle of Nature; it is supposed to be
ceaseless repetition.

2

Indeed, this has already been realized in Japan, for the
Ministry of Construction is building a gargantuan concrete
embankment on Mt. Fuji, Japan's highest. (Translator's note)

3

In comparison with construction bonds, the money-losing savings
bonds are still better. This is because the savings bonds are not
used to directly destroy the land (though it will come around to
that sooner or later).


CHAPTER II

The Evils of the City

If we were to assume that the city brought no harm to either
human beings or to the Earth, there would be no need for a
discussion (or condemnation) of the spread of the cities as in
the previous chapter. Yea, it would be verily the opposite: Just
as most urbanites believe, the city is an ultimate good since it
helps them achieve prosperity. We may even say, then, that
urbanization must be aggressively promoted not only
quantitatively (in terms of the city's boundless expansion), but
also qualitatively (in the quest of ever greater modernization
and technological advances).


But sorry to say, such is just not the case. The city is, in
actuality, the very root of the evils that threaten the future of
humanity and the Earth.


Though to the denizens of the city it is a good, since it allows
them to pursue convenience, extravagance, and ease (that is,
prosperity), that "good" is, minute by minute, turning into a
future -- yea, a present -- evil, and we (the city dwellers
first) will in time be exterminated by the city's poisons. So
that the city can pursue convenience, extravagance, and ease, we
must be visited by the accumulation of waste, destruction, and
contamination, which will, needless to say, end in a dreadful
catastrophe.

The City's Endless Plunder

The city itself is unproductive, and cannot supply its own needs.
No matter how many trinkets and gimcracks the manufacturing and
processing industries make, this cannot be called production; we
must in fact regard this as the consumption of resources and
energy. Since the city is therefore nonproductive and non-self
sufficient it must either rob all needed supplies from some other
place or lose the ability to keep itself alive and functioning.
Urban residents will not be able to pursue extravagance and ease,
let alone continue living.


Because it robs everything from another place the city causes
trouble for others, and trashes the Earth is the process. Let us
now try listing the various evils inherent in the city's
plundering ways.

Evil One

The first evil is deforestation.


Cities were first built by chopping down the forests. No matter
what city, unless it floats in the air or on the water, the place
it occupies was most likely originally forest. Thus the city, in
order to establish itself, cut the trees. And though it is the
destroyer of trees, the city at the same time requires the
oxygen produced by trees (for its overflowing people, its legions
of automobiles, and its multitudes of factories). Counting on the
oxygen from the trees of other areas, the city is barely able to
maintain its life and functions.


If that were all, we might be able to put up with it, but the
high-handed, arrogant city, in order to increase its benefits and
extravagance, continually plunders and destroys the forests in
these other areas as well. If one goes to the port at Shimizu,
one can see the shiploads of lumber and pulp robbed from the
forests of developing nations. The countries thus plundered are
now watching their clearcuts turn into wasteland and desert.


Thus, by means of producing vast quantities of throwaway
wrapping paper and packing boxes, and its idiotic newspapers,
magazines, and leaflets, by becoming drunk on its own
extravagance and convenience, the city is cutting its own throat;
it is carrying on activities that contribute to the reduction of
its all-important oxygen. What is more, after consuming these
vast quantities of paper, the city disposes of them by burning,
consuming yet more oxygen.


The city should take a good look at what is happening. By
plundering the forests of the southern hemisphere it is not only
bringing about a crisis there. It is using up its own supply of
trees as well -- the trees without which it cannot survive.

Evil Two

The second evil is the plunder of farmland.


In the previous section I wrote that the city was built by
destroying the forests, but land which was formerly forested is
first and foremost that which can and should be used for farming.
The cities are built almost solely on the level, most fertile
land. And other urbanized areas, such as those along rail lines
and roads, or the centers of villages -- though there are a few
places which have been made by cutting into the mountains -- have
been built on plundered farmland. The urbanization of farmland is
accomplished by such high-handed legal stratagems as taxing the
land as if it were residential property, or employing urban
planning laws.


The residents of the cities had best not forget that the very
farmland they continue to urbanize is the source of their food.

Evil Three

The third evil is, as I mentioned in the previous chapter, the
covering of the earth with concrete.


In order to profit from plundered farmland, the city usually
covers it with concrete, thereby making the land forever useless.


All living things are borne and nourished by the Land. Rain is
absorbed by the Land, becoming the source of well water and
stream water, water that is released gradually in dry times by
means of the Land's regulatory and retaining capabilities. The
Land also purifies all contaminants (except for things like heavy
metals and chemicals). The Land has, for millions of years,
continued its work of reducing waste products, dead plants, and
fallen leaves by means of bacterial action, and returning them to
the soil.


But by covering the Land with concrete we paralyze this
function, and it dies. Dead land (concrete) will not grow plants
or absorb water, or give it forth in dry times. And contaminants
on concrete just stink without being purified; if we don't clean
up the mess we cannot even live there.


The functions of the earth -- giving life to the plants and
animals, regulating the rainwater, purifying waste and returning
it to the soil -- may be said to form the main artery of Nature's
cyclical function. If the earth is blocked off, the flow of blood
will halt, and the Earth will turn into a dead planet. And it is
none other than concrete that is responsible for cutting off the
flow of blood.


The big city is a great mass of concrete, and it is here that
the rape of the Land attains its highest perfection. Should the
multitudes of buildings collapse, how would they dispose of the
mountains of rubble? No matter where they put the rubble, it will
cover the earth, and the bottom of the ocean should also be
considered earth. Whether a factory, an office building, or a
paved road, once it is built we have condemned some part of the
Land to be covered with it. The more you block off the Land, the
more the functions of nature are necessarily impaired, and we
will pay for this sooner or later. The net of Heaven is coarse,
but allows nothing to escape [4] -- is it possible that Nature
will miss this or generously overlook it?

Evil Four

The fourth evil is the theft of the farm population.


The cities have burgeoned by stealing the farm population. The
expansion of the cities is in other words the growth of those
employed by the secondary and tertiary industries, and the growth
of the secondary and tertiary population represents the decline
of the farming population.


In order to feed a large non-tilling population with a small
farming population, labor-saving, high-yield agriculture is an
absolute necessity, and this leads to plundering, contaminating
agriculture using machines that run on petroleum. As long as the
increased secondary and tertiary population tries to enjoy a
modern lifestyle (convenience, extravagance, and ease), it only
stands to reason that the consumers (the non-tilling population)
will have to put up with, and pay the price of, contaminated
agricultural produce.

Evil Five

The fifth evil is squeezing food out of the farmers. Since the
concrete cities are incapable of supplying themselves with food,
the inhabitants must, in order to survive, squeeze everything
they eat -- be it an apple, a tomato, or a grain of rice -- out
of the farming villages. Long ago the cities expropriated
agricultural produce through the feudal lords and landlords, and
in more recent times they forced the farmers to give it up by
means of the Food Control Act. Now, however, they take mountains
of food by means of money. These are necessary, desperate
measures taken to keep the cities alive. No matter what means
they employ, the cities must forever (until they collapse into
rubble) continue to extort food from the farmers. They can do
nothing else, even if they have to send in the military and seize
food from the farmers at gunpoint.


What is more, as long as one has to rip it off, why not grab the
best (even dogs and cats take the best first)? That is why the
feudal lords and landlords issued orders for rice to be sent to
them. "Millet will not do. Such is for farmers to eat." Thus
they ruled. And now the city dwellers say, "Let us pay a lot of
money for sasanishiki and koshihikari." [5] How is this different
from the arrogance of the feudal lords and landlords?


In this way the best of the agricultural produce continues to
flow into the cities, while in the country we continue to satisfy
ourselves with the leftovers. It ought to be the other way
around.

Evil Six

The sixth evil is the destruction of the seashore and the
prodigal consumption of marine products.


Once upon a time Tokyo Bay was a famous fishing ground for
shorefish, but now the shore of the bay is concrete and great
quantities of sewage pour into the water, destroying the fishing.
In order to make things better for themselves, the cities have
destroyed the natural seashores (it is not just Tokyo Bay -- the
better half of Japan's seashores are concrete) and sacrificed the
lives of the fishermen living there.


The shore has always been the greatest mechanism for the sea's
ability to purify itself. [6] Great numbers of marine organisms
live near the shores, so that as long as we do not cover them
with concrete and fill the littoral areas with garbage, there is
no need to go far out to sea to fish, thereby being a nuisance to
other countries.


Japan's deep sea fishing industry, for example, has taken too
many shrimp near Indonesia, and in order to get 8,000 tons of
shrimp, once discarded 70,000 tons of fish (according to an Asahi
Shimbun feature entitled "Food"). Extravagant city dwellers will
pay high prices for shrimp, but they will not pay much for other
marine foods, and since the fishermen cannot make money by
offering ordinary fish, all the dead ones are thrown back into
the sea after sorting. Such fish are a precious source of protein
for the people of Indonesia.


Thus the egomaniacal cities waste 70,000 tons of fish so that
they can gorge themselves on shrimp (I will answer later to the
charge that people in the country eat shrimp, too). And what is
more, they so recklessly take shrimp that the shrimp are now in
danger of running out. Just as with the forests, Indonesia's fish
crisis is intimately connected with our cities' appetite.

Evil Seven

The seventh evil is the copious consumption of resources and
energy. The functions of the cities are supported by vast
quantities of energy and underground resources. Almost all these
resources are used to maintain the extravagance and convenience
of the cities (like elevators, automatic doors, neon signs,
transportation systems, heating, and air conditioning), and to
make idiotic trinkets and gewgaws (like cars, cameras,
televisions, and robots). The cities (industries) are built on
the assumption that petroleum and metals will be supplied
forever, and in unlimited quantities. However, it should be
manifest even to a little child that such things are limited, and
what remains dwindles day by day.


The incredible fight over, and waste of, resources is an
indication, along with the pursuit of profit inherent in a money
economy, of the competitive ideology of the city mind. Modern
urban civilization -- that is, the extravagance and prosperity of
the cities -- is a fruitless blossom fed by this waste of energy
and underground resources.

Evil Eight

The eighth evil is the excessive consumption of oxygen and water.


The consumption of oxygen is just as I noted in the section on
forests (Evil One). Were it not for oxygen, even the convenient
energy provided by petroleum would not be available. Oxygen is
the most important thing in maintaining the functions of the
cities, and they consume it with wild abandon. Oxygen decreases
minute by minute, so that in time we too might not have enough to
breathe (it is said that in one minute a jet consumes as much
oxygen as a human being consumes in a year).


The cities also think nothing of wasting water for convenience
and money-making, for their flush toilets and their factories.
The cities take water from others by force, and then dump their
wastes everywhere.

Evil Nine

The ninth evil is the way the city forces sacrifices on others so
it can obtain electricity and water.


The egotism of the city is more than apparent in its method of
obtaining electricity and water. We all remember when Tokyoites
insisted that, in order that they could live a convenient,
pleasant life, it was only natural that the village of Okawachi
sink beneath the waters of a dam reservoir. In this way the
farmers of the village were turned out of the place that had been
their home for generations, while the citizens of Tokyo, in their
pursuit of convenience, extravagance, and ease (not to mention
money-making), never even looked back. And the tragedy of such
obscure villages is just like that of the villages ruined by
nuclear power. Why don't the cities build their nuclear reactors
right in the middle of the cities? Why don't they build them in
one of their seaside industrial zones? If city residents do not
have enough water for their flush toilets or electricity for
their automatic doors (though I would expect they too have hands
with which to open doors), they should leave the cities.

The Evils of Urban Wastes

The preceding nine sections are an outline of the plundering,
destructive acts that the cities must perpetrate in order to
maintain themselves.


Now, having consumed all of these plundered resources, the
cities are left with wastes -- both industrial and human -- and
they then proceed to dump them on others, all the while thinking
it a perfectly natural thing to do. No matter that the cities
have been so devilishly clever in devising a civilization built
on all manner of amazing apparatuses -- the law of conservation
of matter guarantees that they cannot do away with their garbage
by sleight of hand.


Let us now list and examine the various evils of the cities as
represented by their wastes.


1. Carbon Dioxide

The first of the wastes is the excessive release of carbon
dioxide into the atmosphere. The result of robbing great amounts
of oxygen and consuming it is the production of similarly great
amounts of carbon dioxide. Trees would be expected to consume
this carbon dioxide and deliver oxygen to us, but since the
cities are also destroying the trees, this conversion process
cannot keep up; if there were no cities in the world, we could
expect the consumption and production of oxygen to be in balance.


Thus the amount of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere steadily
increases, and it is said that by the years 2025-2050, there will
by twice as much in the atmosphere as there was before
industrialization. Because of the greenhouse effect the
temperature at the surface of the Earth will rise two or three
degrees, the glaciers will melt, and the surface of the oceans
will rise five meters above their present levels. Most of the big
cities of the world will then be flooded. They shall reap as the
have sown.


2. Atmospheric Pollution by Exhaust

The second is the production of particulate matter and exhaust
gases. Prodigious amounts of poisonous gases and particulate
matter pour from the smokestacks of the cities' innumerable
factories, from the throngs of automobiles crowding their
streets, and from the swarms of jets in the skies (and even a
little from all the cigarettes; I will answer later to the charge
that we have cigarettes and cars in the country, too). Not only
does all this pollute the atmosphere, it is also said that the
particulate matter blocks the light of the sun, thus causing a
drop in the temperature on the Earth. There is no reason to
believe that this will be balanced off satisfactorily by the
greenhouse effect. The increase in carbon dioxide, poisonous
gases, and particulate matter in the atmosphere threatens the
lives of all living things on our Earth.


3. Depletion of the Ozone Layer

The third is the depletion of the stratospheric ozone layer.


Those ever-so-convenient city inventions the jet plane and the
aerosol spray, and the nitrogen fertilizer that the city
invented to dominate the farming villages, are the instruments by
which the city is destroying the ozone layer.


The effects of the exhaust gases and nitrogen oxides released in
the stratosphere by jet planes will, in the final estimation,
reduce the ozone by 6.5 percent. And it is thought that the CFCs
used in aerosol sprays, which rise to high altitudes upon their
release, will, even if their use continues at the 1974 rate,
cause a 14 percent loss of the ozone over the next 50 years. The
nitrogen suboxide released when the nitrogen fixed in chemical
nitrogen fertilizers is denitrified will, it is estimated, cause
a future 3.5 percent reduction of ozone.


A 1 percent reduction in ozone translates to a 2 percent
increase in ultraviolet radiation reaching the Earth's surface,
and an increase in ultraviolet radiation is a threat to all
living things on Earth; it is said that, if nothing is done about
this -- if the ozone layer continues to be destroyed -- certain
species will be faced with extinction. Since all species in their
interactions work to maintain the ecosystem, the loss of even one
could signify grave consequences for the ecosystem as a whole. As
for human beings, should there be a 10 percent reduction in
ozone, it is thought that cases of skin cancer could increase 20
to 30 percent.


The cities steal nitrogen and oxygen from the atmosphere, they
rob metals and petroleum from the earth, and their wonderful
scientific achievement is to put us and the entire ecosystem in
mortal danger by means of the production and use of their
inventions.

4. Sewage

Fourth is the dumping of sewage into the ocean.


In order to maintain convenience, extravagance, and ease, the
city must somehow dispose of the great amounts of water it
converts into sewage, and that sewage always ends up in the
ocean. The amount of sewage produced is about equal to the amount
of water consumed.


This sewage is treated and divided into water and sludge; the
sludge is used for landfills, and the water goes to the sea via
the sewage system. However, since this treatment is not perfect
the water flowing into the ocean contains, depending upon the
substance, 10-60 percent of what it originally contained. In
addition, most cities have a sewage system in which rain water is
collected along with the sewage, so that on a rainy day the
treatment plants cannot handle the volume, and the result is that
some of it goes to the sea just as it is. Thus the ocean has
become a cesspool.


Washing one's hands means that one must dirty some water. And
doing the laundry means that one pollutes the ocean by cleaning
one's clothes. Flush toilets are no different. As long as I can
live under sanitary conditions, it doesn't matter if the ocean
becomes polluted -- this is the egotism that the city is built
upon.


5. Mountains of Garbage and Wastes

The fifth is landfills of garbage and sludge. No matter what kind
of garbage one has, it is quite impossible, even if one changes
its form or appearance, to make it disappear. Unburnable solid
trash goes without saying, but burnable trash is no different:
even after burning, the gaseous part disperses in the atmosphere,
and the ashes still remain. And there is no proof that these are
harmless. Even if the city had the technology to make them
harmless, these great amounts of waste (ashes) must still be put
somewhere, and that will cause problems for someone.


The cunning, arrogant city is able to maintain the pleasantness
of its own environment by shoving its tons of garbage off on the
country, or by dumping it in the ocean. But do we tolerate it
when someone dumps his garbage in his neighbor's house in order
to keep his own clean? The beautiful cities and spic-and-span
factories which receive awards from the Environment Agency are
showing us that they are shoving more garbage off on others than
are other cities and factories.


Of all the kinds of trash brought out of the cities the most
voluminous is demolition wastes. It is said that this makes up
one-third of the waste from the big cities. Whenever they begin
some new enterprise, they remove the old buildings since they are
now just in the way. And the place they discard this waste is
(take for example Nagoya) farmland purchased for the purpose.
Every bit of junk that the city produces in order to achieve even
greater benefit and extravagance (even the wastes produced in one
day could not be kept in the city) are taken to the country and
forced off on us. If the people in the country bought some land
in the city and began to haul things like straw, wood chips, and
rocks to the city and dumped them there, would the city stand by
silently and allow this?


Second to demolition wastes, the wastes of greatest volume are
those created by the manufacturing and processing industries.
Next come domestic wastes, and then those produced by the
services (included are of course such poisonous substances as
mercury, PCBs, and ABS). These wastes are disposed of, along with
the sludge from sewage treatment plants, on land or in landfills
near the ocean. [7]


6. The Flood of Merchandise

The sixth is the flood of products (merchandise).


I have already written about how, in its activities of
manufacturing and processing, the city robs and wastes resources;
how it spreads pollution everywhere; how it shoves its garbage
off on others. But these are not the only evils inherent in the
city's industries.


The city produces vast quantities of products (merchandise),
piles them high everywhere, and threatens the very future of
human society with this flood. [8] Look at the packs of
automobiles crowding the roads. Look at the great quantities of
agricultural chemicals in use. Look at the mountains of medicine
and food additives being shoved down our throats. It is the same
for the worthless cigarettes produced in mountainous quantities;
for the oceans of alcohol meant to help city people forget that
there is no longer any meaning in their lives; for the heaps of
records and tapes, which, like sonic narcotics, produce noise and
dementia; for the weekly magazines and comic books that overflow
with idiotic stories and pictures -- one could go on without
limit. It would not be an overstatement to say that all
merchandise produced by the city is the same. And just as I
mentioned before with jet planes and aerosols, they produce
pollution not only when they are used, but, as outlined in
section five, become pollution themselves after use, thus causing
the utmost trouble for people in other places. No matter what
product, it cannot stand up to use indefinitely; sooner or later
it becomes trash and the city must dispose of it somehow (these
days we see many products that were made purposely to last only a
short time). [9] Everywhere we look we see discarded junk like
televisions, washing machines, and automobiles (strangely enough,
these were supposed to be the very symbols of prosperity) -- does
it not make one feel the desolation foretelling the end of an
age? When a tiger dies it leaves its hide, but when city
merchandise dies, it leaves more evil. [10]


Will human beings in the end be crushed under the load of their
merchandise and trash? [11]


7. Excessive Services Forced onto Us

The seventh is how the city forces excessive services off on us.


Take, for example, public employees. It is said that the number
of public employees increases at a fixed rate. Even that
illustrious, tyrannical dictator Hitler met with defeat when, in
an effort to streamline the government, he ran up against the
firm resistance of the bureaucrats, so there is no reason to
believe that today's pusillanimous cabinet members or boneheaded
Government Reorganization Committee members would be able to
change anything no matter how many handstands they perform.


The overpaid bureaucrats, in order to increase their staff and
expand their territory, are continually planning new "services"
and getting their politico friends to appropriate money for them.
It is the citizens who have to put up with these nuisances. Fill
out this form, cooperate in this survey -- there is no end to
their worthless, time-consuming services.


Private service enterprises are no different in that they
hard-sell services. These days we see the emergence of strange,
previously unheard-of services, and there are numerous instances
of their swindling the innocent public for all they can get.


There is no saying where all this will stop. According to 1982
employment survey results published by the Gifu Prefectural
Statistics Section, a mere 0.9 percent of all youths 15 to 24
years of age are employed in primary industries (this figure has
shown a steady yearly decline). This means that the other 99.1
percent are making a living in the spiffy secondary and tertiary
industries. Let us take careful note of the fact that the present
urbanizing social structure allows only 0.9 percent of the young
to feed the other 99.1 percent prodigal sons.


8. The City as Warmonger

The eighth is that the city is a warmonger.


Both guns and ammunition are made by the city. And nuclear
weapons go without saying.


Needless to say, those who directly manufacture and sell weapons
for killing people are the merchants of death, but a careful look
reveals that the cities are chock full of merchants of death. If
I may be allowed an extreme statement, I would say that it is not
an overstatement to say that those who engage in the secondary
and tertiary industries are all merchants of death. For example,
those who manufacture and sell such harmful things as food
additives, agricultural chemicals, cigarettes, automobiles, and
jet planes, and make money at it, are all merchants of death. But
this hardly bears mentioning.


"But surely...not me!" However, even the sacred profession of
teacher, those relieved because they believe they are innocent,
are just as guilty as the merchants of death as long as they
engage in any kind of education, for all education teaches
"progress," "development," "improvement," and "prosperity," i.e.,
destruction and contamination.


And physicians, practitioners of the benevolent art of medicine,
work in tandem with the drug companies, dribbling, injecting,
inserting, and popping huge quantities of drugs into their
patients, bringing about iatrogenic diseases; they are but
epigones of the merchants of death.


And the entertainers, professional athletes, men of letters,
painters, composers, critics, and even the archeologists and
anthropologists, who appear to be able to excuse themselves by
saying that their work at least does no harm -- these
leisureologists all plan ways to continue their idle and
gluttonous [12] ways without dirtying their own hands; sitting
back in their armchairs they force the small number of farmers to
carry on labor-saving, high-yield agriculture, and contribute to
poisoning by agricultural chemicals, frequent occurrences of
greenhouse diseases, and the production of great quantities of
contaminated agricultural produce. As long as this state of
affairs continues, they can never remove themselves from the
ranks of the merchants of death.


Having thus listed some professions, I wonder if there is even
one person living in the cities who can prove that he or she is
an exception? Even if it is possible to demonstrate this, there
is still no possible way to deny the fact that urban dwellers are
living in the city for convenience, extravagance, and ease, and
that they are accomplices to the city's plundering and
destructive acts.


While it was obvious that the producer of murderous weapons is
the city, let us in addition take note of the fact that the city
is also the starter of wars.


As I wrote in the beginning of this chapter, the city itself is
non-self-supporting and non-productive, so that if it does not
commandeer its supplies from some other place (and since the city
cannot clean itself, if it does not shove its garbage off on
someone else), it cannot maintain its functions or continue its
activities. Competition among cities then naturally arises, and
if a dispute cannot be resolved by money or discussion, they
resort to a settlement by means of armed force. There is no
telling how many wars of this kind have been fought in human
history.


In the country (which will be defined in Chapter III) it is
possible to keep oneself alive by self-sufficient practices and
the blessings of Nature, so there is at least no reason why one
must resort to war.


You, in the cities! If you still insist on getting rid of
nuclear weapons, then you must first dismantle the city, which is
both the hotbed and ringleader of war. If you do not do so, you
will be destroyed by the nuclear weapons that the city itself has
produced. [13]

NOTES


4

Lao Zi, chapter 73: "Heaven's net is great in size; though its
mesh is coarse, nothing gets through." Usually interpreted to
mean that Nature never lets evil go unpunished. (Translator's
note)

5

The finest, and most expensive, varieties of rice. (Translator's
note)
6

If river water flows through 100 meters of rocks, sand, and
plants, impurities will be removed, but even if it flows through
a thousand-meter length of concrete channel, it will not be
purified.
7

In an interview (Asahi Shimbun, July 24, 1985 evening edition)
with one of the promoters of the "Phoenix Project," a land fill
planned for the disposal of Osaka-area wastes, the interviewed
person recognized the fact that "if we burn 100 tons of garbage,
15 tons of ashes remain." The project, which will destroy what
little remains of Osaka Bay's natural seashore, was ironically
named after the phoenix since, its promoters claim, though the
ocean will be filled in, the area will be reborn as new land for
Japan. Though the total planned volume of the landfill is a
staggering 45 million cubic meters, it will serve the needs of
the area for a mere six years. (Translator's note)
8

Though the cities are already overflowing with manufactured
goods, why is it that the cities madly pursue increased
production? This is, as I mentioned before, due to the magical
power of money. In order to make more money -- that is, in the
pursuit of profit -- people are manipulated by the magical
strings of money, and thus increase production.


No matter what the original purpose of money, it has always been
used as a weapon to seize food. At present, however, it is used
not only to bring food to the cities, but is also the life blood
of all industrial activities. Thus its role is to carry on by
force the destruction and contamination of the natural
environment, the robbery and waste of resources, the
overproduction of goods, and dumping of wastes on others ("As
long as we pay money, no one will gripe even if we make a mess of
things.").


I could have established a separate section for the harm caused
by money, but will let this note serve for now.

9

The average lifetime of a one-family home in Japan is now said to
be 20-25 years. (Translator's note)

10

A play on the proverb "When a tiger dies it leaves its hide, but
when a man dies he leaves his name." (Translator's note)

11

I am not especially trying to ignore the "good" of the city's
products, but allow me to remind the reader that there is no
denying the harm rendered to people by cigarettes, food
additives, and cars.

12

"Idle and gluttonous" (fukou donshoku) is a term from the
Japanese feudal-age thinker Ando Shoeki, whom Nakashima will
introduce later. I have borrowed the translation from E. H.
Norman. (Translator's note)

13

On a special program, "Earth in Flames," aired by NHK on August
5, 1984, they told of the effects of a nuclear attack on Tokyo (a
single one-megaton bomb exploded over Tokyo Tower). The many
high-rise buildings, the Shinkansen trains, jet planes, and cars
on the expressways would all be set afire and blown away in an
instant; furthermore, computer operators, people enjoying
themselves downtown, housewives shopping in the marketplaces, and
children playing on the school playgrounds would similarly be
blown away in an instant, their flesh half melted; in this way
the six million people within a 15 km radius of the explosion
would all die instantly. This is bad, but I must take issue with
the view that all these Tokyoites are just innocent, pitiful
victims. There is absolutely no difference in this case between
the attacked and the attacker, because both are destructive,
rapacious, haughty, arrogant, tyrannical cities. The civilization
of the city, which produced the high-rise buildings, the
Shinkansen, the jet planes, the computers, and the supermarkets
likewise produced nuclear weapons. Therefore, if we are to get
rid of nuclear weapons, we must also get rid of the cities.
Nuclear weapons are like the bull's horns -- we cannot just cut
off the horns and then believe it is all right to let the bull go
on living.


You in the cities! Open your eyes! Your belief that if we just
get rid of nuclear weapons then we are assured everlasting peace
and prosperity is nothing more than a delusion.


In order to maintain this peace and prosperity how much evil
(destruction, contamination, waste) must the city perpetrate?
What great catastrophes must the city bring down upon humanity
and the Earth?


There is little difference between dying by nuclear weapons and
dying by contamination and destruction. If the city is destroyed
(of course it will take the rest of us down with itself) by its
own nuclear weapons, then it will have reaped as it has sown.


Special Chapter

The City and Food

-- The Excess, Insufficiency, and Importation of Rice --

Whether or not to import rice is COMPLETELY the problem of the
city. Can there truly be a reason why the farmers must be up in
arms over this issue?


It is absurd that this problem of rice excesses and shortages
should be fussed over as if it controlled the fate of the
farmers! [14]

The Farmers Have No "Food Problem"

Originally farmers were people who grew their own food and
survived on that, and if because of frosts they lost half their
rice crops, they would get along on the half they were able to
harvest. The cities (consumers), however, receive the full impact
of that lost half of the rice crop, so this must therefore be
considered a big problem which completely controls the fate of
the city. If on the other hand there is a bountiful harvest of
rice the farmers have cause for celebration, and have no reason
to consider this a burden. Even if they have far too much rice
for themselves they can give it to their domestic animals, and if
they still have some left over (or if they have no animals) they
can return it to the earth.


It is also of no concern to the farmers whether the city decides
to import rice or not (there is no reason why farmers must eat
imported rice even though they still have some stored), so this
is therefore purely the consumers' problem. Thus it comes down to
being simply a matter of the city securing its staple food from
its own country or another country, and making the wrong choice
could mean running out of food. If the city relies upon another
country for its staple food, and this supply is for some reason
interrupted, then logic dictates it is the people in the cities,
and not the farmers, who will be in a pickle.


Don't tell me that this is my egotism. What I want to make plain
here is that the city (the system) is taking a problem that
completely controls its own destiny, and making it look as though
it controls the destiny of the farmers, thereby trying to solve
the entire food problem by sacrificing the farmers. This is
nothing other than another one of the city's deceptive
stratagems. Nothing exhibits the stupidity of the farmers to the
world more than their being taken in by this trick, and then
going down to the ports to demonstrate against the importation of
rice. [15]


The insufficiency and importation of rice is the perfect chance
to eliminate (or at least shrink) the cities. Farmers! If there
is a shortage of rice, we should reduce, not increase,
production. Help promote the rice shortage! Don't oppose rice
imports! Until the authorities take action, voluntarily reduce
your rice acreage! Produce only enough for yourself and your
animals! If you prepare yourself for an austere life, then it is
the cities, and not the farmers, who will find themselves in a
bind.


If the trees do not produce many nuts, then the number of
squirrels will decrease. It is a self-evident truth that, if
supplies of the staple food fall, the number of cities will be
reduced correspondingly.


When farmers have been deceived by the cities, believe the food
problem is their own, say that we must at all costs stop the
importation of rice, and demand that government rice stocks be
opened -- when even the farmers begin to talk this way -- we can
only say that their delusions and stupidity have attained the
zenith. Are they trying to bring about again that terrible past
of plunder when our ancestors, in years of famine, had even their
own stocks of rice taken from them as tax, and starved to death
in shame? We must not be fooled by their demands to break out the
stored rice. Even if you have to throw it in the gutter, don't
give it to the city. This will be the best means of bringing
about the shrinkage of the cities. Let the cities import food if
they like. When in their dangerous tightrope act they run up
against some unforeseen circumstance, it will be of NO concern to
the farmers.

Why Feed the Hand that Pollutes?

"The farmers have a duty to provide the citizens (actually the
cities) with food." This is the noble-sounding great cause that
the city always brandishes, and the farmers believe it without
question. This faith of the farmers is proof of what I meant
previously when I said that the city (that is, the secondary and
tertiary industries) changes a problem that completely controls
its own destiny into one which controls that of the farmers, and
through this deft trickery attempts to solve its food problem by
sacrificing the farmers. And since this is blind faith, the
farmers do not realize at all that this is a trick; the city
coolly gives the farmers the responsibility for the food problem,
and the farmers themselves take on this responsibility
wholeheartedly. The city, in other words, has made the farmers
believe blindly that supplying the cities with food is their
duty.


A duty to feed the citizens (cities)? There is no such thing! I
may be repeating myself, but this "duty" is nothing more than an
artifice invented by the city -- which cannot live even a day
without robbing food from the farmers -- to take that food; such
an unwritten law has not, of course, always existed as a law of
Nature. Did not Nature decree that we either gather or produce
our own food?


We must not be deceived. Though you farmers believe from the
bottom of your hearts that "agriculture is a sacred profession,"
that is but a belief brought about as a result of your having
fallen prey to the city's plundering stratagems, and is no
different from before when, controlled by the slogan "Japan is
the nation of the gods," young men from the farms gave their
lives for the state.


Farmers! When you believe that "farming is the sacred
profession," [16] when you fall for the idea that "the farmers
have a duty to supply food to the citizens," when, with sweat on
your brow and mud on your hands, you are put on the run by your
machines in order to answer to the demand for great quantities of
food, you are preserving and promoting the "evils of the city"
that I outlined in Chapter II.


That which you nourish by working your fingers to the bone is
none other than the source of all pollution, the root of all
evil, that is, the city dwellers, the prodigal sons. In view of
this situation, the "sacred profession" in which you believe is
actually an evil that nourishes evil. We must immediately root it
out.


If we do not eradicate this evil, there will soon be no hope for
us. There is absolutely no reason why you must expose yourself to
dangerous agricultural chemicals, suffer under onerous debts, and
work yourself into the ground in order to feed the likes of those
who make cigarettes, food additives, cars, and jet planes, thus
spreading pollution all over the place; those who make guns,
bullets, nuclear weapons, and preparations for murder; the people
who force needless governmental services onto us; or people like
singers, dancers, and athletes who make their living by exciting
others.


I will say it once again: Don't answer their demands for great
supplies of food! A shortage of the staple food, rice, is an
excellent opportunity for us. If the city people do not have
enough to eat they will realize their error, and this will
engender the shrinkage of the cities, which will in turn bring
about the amelioration of the city's evils. This is what Ando
Shoeki meant when he said, "The idle and gluttonous should simply
be punished by death."

The Alternatives Pressing Humankind

Let us note that allowing land to lay idle is, as a matter of
fact, the best possible way to make the switch to organic
farming. It is said that making a sudden switch to organic
farming is difficult for our arable land, which has been ruined
by agricultural chemicals and chemical fertilizers, but if one
lets the land lay idle and avails oneself of the following
method, the land will come back to life in only one year, and one
will be able to raise good rice with absolutely no agricultural
chemicals or chemical fertilizers.


On idle paddies just dump great quantities of such things as
straw, grass, chicken manure, garbage from your kitchen, and
dregs and lees from starch and tofu, if you can get them free.
After you have done this, the weeds will grow luxuriously. Cut
them and then either let them lie as they are, or (if you have
animals) feed them to your animals and return the weeds to the
soil in the form of manure. If you continue this for one season
you will find that the next year, even if you begin with no
fertilizer at all, mature seedlings planted a little late and
wider apart than usual will grow beautifully and strong, and you
will get big ears of rice even without adding any fertilizer
during the season. Truly great is the recovery power of Nature.


By letting some land lay idle you can get two birds with one
stone: begin the shrinkage of the cities, and manage the switch
to organic agriculture. Remember, the object here is not to
produce great quantities of rice, but to produce healthy rice
without the use of chemicals; if the farmers eat just a little
good-quality rice, that is all that matters.


Now at this time a food panic will arise, and it is inevitable
that the cities will ransack the farming villages in their search
for rice. But if we do not get rid of the pus, the sore will not
heal. In the attempt to deal a blow to the powerful cities, we
must prepare ourselves for a little bloodletting. It may be
expecting too much to achieve our goal without payment of any
kind.


Whether in the country or in the cities, we are faced with two
clear alternatives, represented by the following two attitudes:
"As long as I can gain happiness (extravagance and prosperity)
now, it's all right if humanity perishes in the future," and
"Even if we experience more unhappiness (austerity and a smaller
scale lifestyle) than at present, humanity will survive." These
are the alternatives, and we must choose one of them.


I think that, even if there is a little bloodletting, and even if
the cities retreat and life becomes much more inconvenient and
difficult than it is now, we should let the human race continue
to exist on this Earth.


Fortunately, a full belly (extravagance) engenders laziness, but
an empty belly (austerity) engenders hope. As long as, ensconced
in the midst of plenty, we continue our extravagant lives, we
will never have the opportunity to experience real happiness.

Supplementary Comment on "Rice Shortages"

It is said that the rice shortage (a shortage of a magnitude that
brought about the need to import rice) is the result of four
continuous years of bad weather, but a bigger cause is man-made
-- the meddling of the city.


The first of the city's mistakes is its infamous policy of
reducing rice acreage. To say that "since there's too much rice
you must till fewer paddies" is nothing more than a
kindergartner's idea for a solution. Is this the best idea that
the elite bureaucrats in the Ministry of Agriculture could come
up with? And when we see that the politicians representing the
farming villages just let this pass, it is obvious that they are
not much smarter.


Long ago, in China, they say that even with nine years' worth of
rice stored they still had shortages. So what is all the
excitement over a three or four months' excess?


You, in the cities! This is the rice you're eating. Offer all
those office buildings as rice storage facilities. We should fill
those buildings up with unhulled rice. Should there ever be a
food shortage, all those office buildings and hotels will be
worthless compared to rice. When the Pol Pot regime instituted
the barter system, the capitol of Phnom Penh was instantly
converted into an empty shell. This is because the former
residents left the hotels and offices behind and went from
farming village to farming village in search of food. If we were
to set a nine years' supply of rice as our goal there would be no
shortages because of frost damage, and no need to import rice; at
the same time there would be no need for an acreage reduction
policy.


In such a situation there should be no need to discuss costs.
Since this is the rice that they would all be eating, they should
do the work for free. When it comes down to actually carrying out
this plan, the money economy will probably fall apart, anyway.
[17]


The second of the human-caused disasters is the infrastructure
industry. In order to build infrastructure, the government blows
trillions of yen destroying the paddies tilled by generations of
ancestors, and for that reason we are seeing a reduction in the
rice harvests (let us not overlook the effects of the dense
planting by machines, the damage due to causing the rice to grow
too thickly, and the ill effects of the great quantities of
chemicals).


The government says that the farmers benefit from
infrastructure, but we are actually the victims of it. In reality
those who benefit are the government; the farming co-ops; the
manufacturers of machines, fertilizers, and agricultural
chemicals; the rice wholesalers; and the consumers, all of whom
belong to the cities. What this means is that the city has
created a system by which it can control the production of our
staple food as it pleases. The stupid farmers have given the city
permanent control over the production of rice for a mere pittance
in subsidies.


Our traditional method of producing rice, which boasts a history
of several thousand years, has also been negated by the city
(government, farming co-ops, machinery manufacturers), and the
city has been able to achieve a system of rice production that
suits its own purpose, that is, a system which makes full use of
large machinery and agricultural chemicals, and which saddles the
farmers with debts. That this new system of rice production
(involving the planting of immature seedlings, dense planting,
and early planting) is susceptible to frost damage, is the price
the city must naturally pay.


The third is the desire of the Epicurean city dwellers to eat
the famous varieties of particularly tasty rice. It is for this
reason that the farmers plant more and more "sasanishiki" and
"koshihikari," strains that are particularly susceptible to
frost, blight, and wind damage. On the other hand, strains that
are resistant to cold and disease, since they do not taste as
good, have all but disappeared from the paddies. This is why I
say that frost damage is human-caused.


The fourth is the decline in the will of the farmers to produce.
It would seem to be a mistake to ascribe the loss of the
farmers' enthusiasm to the city, but sad to say, it is completely
the fault of the city. It is because the city has meddled with
the production of food that the farmers have lost their will to
produce. Who was it that promoted the eating of bread (that
considered eating rice bad) and increased the imports of wheat?
It was not the farmers of Japan. It was clearly the city -- the
politicians and traders and nutritionists of the tertiary
industries -- who made deals with the U.S. Department of
Agriculture and grain traders. It was then that the farmers began
to lose the will to produce.


The creation of agribusiness in the early 1960s by means of the
structural improvement of agriculture, in which the government
was highly instrumental, resulted in debts for the farmers, the
increase in the scale of agricultural operations, and the supply
of great amounts of agricultural produce, which was accomplished
by making the farmers busier than ever. The ability of the
farmers to supply themselves with food -- their independence --
was completely lost at this time, and agriculture became highly
dependent on the secondary and tertiary industries (chemical
fertilizers, machinery, fuel, subsidies, etc.). This dependence
is in other words the loss of autonomy; the farmers became
prisoners and lackeys totally controlled by the politicos, the
co-ops, the manufacturers, the trading companies, and the
consumers, and their will to produce rice declined precipitously.


And what did they do to the remaining small-scale farmers? They
made a big deal of the difference in income between the
secondary/tertiary industries and the farmers, and promoted the
move to the cities. As the number of farmers shrank, the urban
population burgeoned, and where the government was not successful
in getting them off the farm, they at least managed to create
many Sunday farmers and part-time farmers. So the farmers, who
were busy making money in town, lost interest in rice production,
and they performed field work hastily with machinery, and
neglected to apply compost to their paddies.


During the same period of time the raising of domestic animals
became an industry independent of agriculture, this because
Japanese agriculture was taken in by the stratagems of the big
U.S. grain companies. Feeding great numbers of domestic animals
with nothing but compound feed burdened the farmers with heavy
debts, and this situation remains unchanged to the present day.
[18] But an even greater problem is that the loss of domestic
animals to the farmer has resulted in the loss of manure
(compost) to be returned to the soil, and this has in turn
resulted in the forced use of larged amounts of chemical
fertilizers and agricultural chemicals, and the weakening of food
plants because of damage to the soil.


The fifth is the standardization of rice-growing techniques by
means of standardized agricultural education.


Just as I mentioned earlier, it is needless to say that much of
this standardization is the result of the interference of the
government and farming co-ops, which is part and parcel of their
infrastructure. But the farmers themselves, who accepted this
system, looked with disdain upon the traditional and appropriate
farming methods of their ancestors who farmed the same land,
prevented these methods from being passed on, went off to far
away schools to learn standardized modern farming methods from a
teacher that had never once held a hoe, and thus created an
environment conducive to the acceptance of intrusion by the
government and the co-ops (of course, most of the people who
received this education became white collar workers, and so
became those who also control agriculture and the farmers). In
this way both Hokkaido and Kyushu now grow rice in the same way,
and no longer have the diverse methods to deal with problems such
as unusual weather, diseases, insects, and wind damage. Still,
they may claim that the per-hectare yields of modern agriculture
are increasing, but how far can we trust the statistics of the
Ministry of Agriculture? It is my suspicion that true yields will
not jibe with desktop statistics which take into consideration
such things as Staple Food Control Act accounts, the rice acreage
reduction policy, and incentives for importation.


The above is a very general explanation, but we can see the
"rice shortage" (or decrease in stores) does not find its only
cause in unavoidable things like frost damage, but is due largely
to the gratuitous meddling of the city.

Postscript

Without really planning it, I touched upon something I am going
to cover in Chapter V, "Down with the Cities!", so I would like
to mention here that by "Down with the cities!" I do not mean
"Down with the people in the cities!" This I shall treat in
detail in Chapter V.

SPECIAL CHAPTER NOTES

14

This chapter was written at the time the Japanese government
imported rice from South Korea. The government suddenly
discovered that it had no reserves of rice except for very old
stores, unacceptable because of the high level of bromine (caused
by fumigants). (Translator's note)

15

Some groups of farmers went down to the ports during the
unloading of the South Korean rice to protest. The January, 1985
issue of Gendai Nogyo ("Modern Agriculture") published a photo
story about some young farmers in Miyagi Prefecture who protested
the government's policies by producing all the rice they could.
(Translator's note)

16

If harvesting rice is a sacred occupation, then a snake's
capture of a frog is also a sacred occupation. There were
originally no human occupations which could be considered sacred.

17

It was at a time when China carried on no trade with other
countries that they said, "Though we have a nine years' store of
rice, it is still insufficient" (of course, at that time other
countries were also incapable of exporting). However, at present,
when arable land all over the globe is eroding and being
otherwise ruined, and the population is growing explosively,
there is no doubt that food for human beings is heading for
insufficiency. Though for Japan imports are still possible, it
will become difficult to import in the future, and we will be in
the same position as ancient China. When such a food crisis
results, we must not allow the money economy to interfere with
food storage. Also, since money serves as the lubricant by which
all the city's evils arise, we must get rid of it sooner or
later.

18

Debts are an excellent means of exploitation. In order to pay
back their loans, the farmers must work themselves into the
ground and offer large amounts of animal products.



CHAPTER III

The City and the Country

In Chapter II we learned that as long as the cities continue to
exist, urban pollution -- which is the product of the cities'
activities -- is unavoidable. We also learned that urban
pollution is at the same time the pollution of the Earth, and
that, other than the cities, there can be no other destroyer and
contaminator of the Earth.


In only a brief, cursory inspection we saw that there are far
more deadly, serious kinds of pollution than we can count on two
hands, and that the city is the sole perpetrator of these
pollution crimes, and the source of all the evils that threaten
humanity and the Earth.

The Entire Japanese Archipelago Has Been Urbanized

However, the cunning and arrogant city has shifted the
responsibility for the destruction of the Earth -- a
responsibility that is clearly its own -- to others, insisting
that the pollution is the product of the science civilization or
that it is brought about by the industrial state. And it goes
without saying that the country is included within that civilized
state.


In the country as well as in the city they drive cars, burn
propane gas, use electricity, smoke cigarettes, waste paper,
spread agricultural chemicals, and drain detergent into the
rivers and lakes; as long as the country belongs to the civilized
state, it cannot escape the fact that it is an accomplice. Thus
saying, the city attempts to shift part of the blame for
pollution onto the country. And what is more, the city also tries
to justify its own pollution as an unavoidable phenomenon of a
modern state.


But sorry to say, this is not at all consistent with reality.


The "country" that the city speaks of -- as if it had made some
great and wonderful discovery -- is not the real country at all,
but a fake, a red herring meant to keep us from seeing the
truth. The real country is what is left after we have removed all
urban influence. It is, in other words, that which can still
exist after the cities have disappeared from the Earth.


The country that the city speaks of is a fake country that is
under the influence of the city. When country people (actually
half-urbanized people) ride in cars, drive tractors, watch
television, smoke cigarettes, eat processed foods, burn
petroleum, use electric lights, and read the newspaper, they are
living a life that would be impossible without the city; this is
therefore what we should probably call an "urbanized country." If
we go a little bit further we could say that such a place does
not even deserve the name "country" for it is none other than the
city itself.


Let us take a look at a typical farm family. The son is a white
collar worker, and so of course belongs to the city. The head of
the household is a part-time farmer who farms on Sunday, and
belongs to the city Monday through Saturday. Even on Sunday when
he does his farm work, he belongs to the city if he benefits
from petroleum and agricultural chemicals. If, after he comes
home from the fields, he drinks beer and watches television, he
belongs to the city. In this way we can see that, in the entire
country of Japan there is not a single place that has not been
urbanized, not a single place that deserves to be called
"country." Yea, it is not going too far to say that the chilling
breath of this devil the city can be felt now in the remotest
corners of the villages, and that the country has been completely
occupied by the city, or shall we say, the commercialism of the
city.


But this is reality, says the city. We must recognize reality as
it is. We must respect reality.

The Real, Invisible Country

However, when we take a close look we see that though they chant
Reality! Reality! we can at any time invert this reality, and
having done so we can see that what has been inverted is just as
much "reality" as that which came before. There is no mistaking
the fact that the country before urbanization was reality, and
that the country after urbanization has become the kind of
reality we now have. It is therefore assured that after inverting
the present reality (that is, after eradicating the cities and
doing away with their influence) the real country that remains
will immediately become reality.


And so, rather than saying "The reality is that the country no
longer exists," it is more accurate to say "If we remove the
presently existing 'urbanized country,' that which remains is in
reality the country itself."


I will say it once more: The real country is what remains after
we get rid of the cities.


If propane gas stops arriving from the city, then we will burn
firewood; if matches to light our firewood stop coming from the
city, then we will warm ourselves by burrowing under piles of
straw, and eat uncooked brown rice and raw potatoes instead of
cooked food; if the city stops sending shrimp taken from far out
at sea, we will give up eating shrimp and catch and eat locusts
and digger wasps; if salt no longer comes from the city we will
consider it an unexpected blessing since it is only human beings
who ruin their health by eating too much salt (we never hear of
wild animals ingesting too much salt and damaging their health);
if shoes stop coming from the city we will make sandals out of
straw; if aluminum sashes and bricks stop coming from the city we
can build sunken huts with logs and straw; if there is no
electricity we will go to bed at sundown and rise with the sun to
work in the fields. This is the country. This real country at
present no longer exists (except in certain "uncivilized" places
in the world), but if we get rid of the cities everyone will find
themselves plunged immediately into this kind of country life,
and that will instantly become "reality." And is there in this
real country any place where pollution can be produced?

The Fate of the Wealth- and Prosperity-Seeking Cities

The city and the country -- this is none other than the contrast
between extravagance (wealth) and austerity (indigence).


China, which aims to modernize itself, has begun saying that
"Being wealthy is the Right Way" (essay in the People's Daily),
and has found it necessary to discard the immortal virtue, alive
in China since long ago, that "Wealth is evil, indigence is
honorable." That such a thing has come to pass is proof that
China could not overcome the lure of extravagance.


The present urbanization of the developing countries (including
that behemoth, China) is proceeding relentlessly as they seek
"wealth," "modernization," and "extravagance." In the near
future, it is said, Mexico city will become a city of 20
million, outstripping New York (UN population survey). When in
this way the developing countries achieve the same level of
modernization as the developed countries, it will be time for
humanity to pay the fiddler. If, for example, 90 percent of
China's one billion people, in their quest for ease and gluttony
(i.e., modernization, wealth, and prosperity), come to live in
the cities, they will demand an incredible amount of resources,
and create an equally incredible amount of poisons. The reason
the developed nations achieved modernization is that they were
able to rob the developing nations of all manner of materials,
and discard the leftover garbage in every place imaginable. If
urbanization spreads to every corner of the globe there will no
longer be anyone to rip off, and no place to stash the trash.


Needless to say, the developed countries will not stand for "the
slide back into poverty," nor the developing nations for
"eternal poverty." So of course we find everyone insisting that
they won't listen to anything like "Let's now wear straw sandals
instead of shoes," or "Let's continue to wear straw sandals."
They all believe that indigence (austerity) is an evil, but it is
nothing compared with the much greater evil that we shall perish
from the Earth.


Listen! Steamed dumplings will of course fill your empty
stomach, and you therefore consider them beneficial. However,
should you eat too many you'll get sick, and those dumplings that
you considered "beneficial" will suddenly become "harmful."


Changing the planet into fields and gardens may be all right,
but changing it into cities is not. This is because the city
depends upon urbanized land for it survival (oxygen and food),
and cannot continue to exist even one day without it. But the
country, even if it does not depend upon the city, can always
continue to live as long as it depends upon nature
(self-sufficiency and austerity). In spite of this, the country
suffers losses day by day, and the cities continue to expand.
[19] Has humanity finally been marked for ruin?

Supplementary Remarks on the Distinction Between the City and the
Country

If there is no money the city cannot survive, but even if there
is no money, the country will continue to exist. Unless Nature
itself disappears, the country will not disappear.


It is money that supports the city (allows the city to control
and exploit the country); money maintains the functions of the
city, and allows it to continue its activities. If the use of
money were to be outlawed the city would immediately find itself
unable to maintain its functions, and its activities would
cease. This is not an empty argument, for in Cambodia the Pol Pot
regime demonstrated that it can be done. The use of money was
prohibited, and the people were forced to conduct business by
barter. Immediately the city people went from farming village to
farming village in search of food, and in no time at all the
capital city of Phnom Penh was reduced to an empty shell. This
was a great experiment in which we saw that , without dropping
even one bomb, and by merely banishing currency, it is possible
to eliminate the cities in a single stroke. [20]


Money is used in the country because of the influence of the
city (the damaging influence of urban commercialism). Even if we
have no money, things will be peaceful. But perhaps it would be
better to express it this way: If we have no money things will be
far more peaceful than if we do. Money is making a mess of the
country, and it allows the city to rob the country of its food.


Long ago our ancestors lived outside the bounds of the money
economy, and so as long as they had salt, there was no need to
buy anything. [21] "Farmer" means a person who does a hundred
different kinds of work, [22] and originally the farmers did
everything for themselves, supplying their own food, clothing,
and shelter. They wove cloth, and they made sandals. They dug
wells, and they thatched roofs. They made ropes, and they
gathered firewood. Not only that, almost all the materials they
used were recyclable products of the fields and forests (I will
later discuss the necessity for the tools -- hatchets, sickles,
and saws -- they used to cut and assemble these materials).


"As long as they have salt..." I wrote, but even if they do not
have salt the farmers can somehow get along. Wild animals such as
squirrels, raccoons, and monkeys do not ingest so much salt, but
they maintain themselves in perfect health. It is only human
beings who eat too much, thereby suffering from hardening of the
arteries and high blood pressure. There is plenty of salt
contained in natural foods; Nature, I expect, made human beings
the same way it made squirrels and monkeys.
* * *
Since the city depends mainly for its existence upon nonrenewable
underground resources, its functions will of course be paralyzed,
and its activities will come to a halt, when the resources run
out. The cities, therefore, will perish first with the
discontinuance of the money economy, and second with shortage of
natural resources. The country can always get along without such
underground resources, just as wild animals and primitive
societies do.


Next (and this is directly related to my remarks on money), the
cities will disappear with a cutoff in the supply of food. The
reason the cities will perish if there is no money is because,
first and foremost, it is money that the city uses to plunder the
country for food. As I have said time and again, the city itself
is nonproductive, and cannot supply its own food. It cannot
continue to survive without robbing (this includes imports) every
last grain of rice from the country. A cutoff in the food supply
is the best means of triggering the fall of the cities.


It is the city which, for its own benefit, and for progress and
development, continues to control and destroy the natural
environment, and it is the country that lives by being in accord
with the flow of Nature. This is the decisive difference between
the city and the country, and the all-important fork in the road
where we separate that which perishes from that which will
endure.


The flow of Nature is a cycle. The four seasons come and go,
night and day are repeated (the Earth repeats the rotation on its
axis, and its revolution around the sun). Rain falls, the water
soaks into the earth, and becomes a spring. Spring water flows
into mountain streams, then makes its way to rivers, and then
into the ocean, where it evaporates. Rising into the sky it forms
clouds, and falls once again on the Land, starting the cycle
anew. Parents give birth to children, children to grandchildren;
from seed to seed the relay of Life continues. And the remains of
all things that have died are converted into humus by the Land
(its self-purifying mechanism), where they again become the
source of nourishment for life (soil). Plants grow, animals then
consume the plants, and the cycle starts all over again.


There is no end to this repetition. We may say that this cycle is
eternity itself. [23] It is therefore not a mistake to say,
"Nature is a cycle, and that cycle is eternity."

The Cycle Is the True Substance of the Country and Agriculture

Furthermore, in this cycle, i.e., repetition, there is no
"progress." From time immemorial the Earth has continued its
rotation and revolution. In the center of the solar system the
sun has continued to blaze. For tens of millions, hundreds of
millions of years, there has been not the slightest development
or improvement. In Nature there is no "progress." The biological
idea of evolution is adaptation to the environment, and is
different from progress. For example, the functioning of human
brains and hands has advanced, whereas the sensitivity of our
ears, eyes, and noses has regressed. These changes are the
results of the adaptation of intelligence and nerves to the
environment, i.e., external stimuli. For the same reason, the
necks of giraffes and the ears of rabbits became long. If
evolution is the same as progress, then can we also say that it
was progress when the dinosaurs became too big?


Well then, the country (agriculture) must be in accordance with
the eternal cycle and progress-less repetition of Nature. Last
year I planted seeds in the spring, watched them grow in the
summer, and harvested my crops in the fall. This year I will do
the same. And next year I will no doubt do it again. It only
stands to reason that if the cycle of Nature never changes, a
kind of agriculture that is closely joined to the cycle is also
eternally unchanging (needless to say, I speak here of true
country agriculture, not of modern agriculture). It is a simple
and boring repetition, but this is what makes agriculture what it
is. The essence and true characteristic of agriculture must be
this simple, boring repetition.


In the modern city, which holds industry supreme, there is no
such repetition. Yea, it is the very essence of the city that it
cannot have repetition. Even if, after the limited resources have
all been dug out of the ground, the city tries to repeat
something, it cannot because there is nothing left. Such
ineffective one-way movement means stagnation, and stagnation
means an irrevocable loss. The more the city becomes aware of the
inevitable future awaiting it after the depletion of its
resources, the more it tortures itself with worry. The cities
then fight among themselves, each trying to grab more resources
than the others, thus hastening their own demise by frantic
squandering. Momentary (as opposed to cyclical and eternal)
prosperity is the fruitless blossom that blooms upon buried
resources. To the modern industries (i.e., the city), repetition
is a fatal blow. The city has a short life, and therefore no time
for leisurely repetition. The categorical commands given to the
city are Progress, Development, and Prosperity.


In the country it is possible to eat rice even if we produce it
just as we did one hundred years ago, but in the city you'll not
find anyone who is able to watch the same television they
watched ten years ago. The city must have even one step forward,
even one millimeter's change. The same can be said for people who
make their living by getting the attention of the world with
literature and painting, for they are always thrashing about
wildly, trying to find a new style, or trying to breathe newness
into things. This quest for novelty ultimately leads to poetry
and prose and pictures that we find are impossible to understand.
Nikita Khrushchev termed this "a pig's tail" thereby earning the
reprobation of the literati, but I think he was correct and
justified in saying so. Ah, the idiocy of those who believe they
are the cultured just because they follow what is new or strange.


So in this way people put all their energies into this mad rush
forward, ever forward, while single-mindedly screeching about
such things as Creativity, Challenge, Freedom, Individuality, and
Progress. If they just sit around they'll be left behind, and
being left behind is serious business (this is the urban
competition mentality).


This stern competition mentality has started the big race to
ruin, and continues its fearsome advance with the entire society
in tow (an effect produced in combination with the Pursuit of
Profit).
* * *
And now a final word to modern agriculture --


Nature has repeated the same cycle over and over again for
billions of years. If agriculture, which is in an inextricably
close relationship with this cycle, shows unusual progress and
development (by accepting the intervention of the secondary and
tertiary industries) in spite of this relationship with the
natural cycle, then it is not at all surprising that distortion
will arise. By distortion I mean the contamination of the land
(our food), the loss of topsoil, the accumulation of salts in the
soil, and the loss of humus.


If we assume that progress in agriculture has made our lives
more affluent, then we must pay a terrible price for that
affluence. In order to live an extravagant "life," we must give
up our survival.

CHAPTER III NOTES

19

By invading the country and urbanizing it, the city is, more
than anything else, destroying the very source of its life.

20

Please note that I do not support any of the barbarisms
perpetrated by Pol Pot.

21

Since in those days (the feudal age) the feudal lords seized
food directly from the farmers, there was no need to include the
farmers in the monetary economy. The farmers were dragged into
the monetary economy when the Meiji government decreed the switch
from payment in kind to cash payment.

22

A literal rendering of one of the Japanese words for "farmer."
(Translator's note).

23

It is said that even in space everything disintegrates in the
end, but if a part of the universe (for example, the Milky Way
Galaxy) disintegrates, the planets and stars turning to dust and
scattering throughout space, then this becomes interstellar
matter which floats about in space; this dust again gathers to
form stars, and a new system is born. This too is the repetitious
movement of the universe, movement which requires tens of
billions of years.



Chapter IV

The Origin of the Cities

Just as the sun exists in the heavens, the cities exist on Earth.
Just as there is water in the great oceans, there are the cities
on land. Or at least this is what most people seem to believe. If
one does not believe so, then it would probably be impossible to
blithely make one's home in the city.


But sorry to say, the city is nothing at all like the sun or the
oceans, for it has only the most tenuous, bubble-like existence.

The World before the Appearance of the City

No matter how grand an existence urbanites try to give the city,
it is unfortunately nothing more than a phantom born a mere ten
thousand years ago or less as the final bubble of human history
-- or as the explosive with which it will destroy itself. This is
just like the Japanese Army, which, though it called itself the
Imperial Army, and (believing that it had existed from the
beginning of time) boasted of its own enduring existence, was
wiped out in less than a hundred years. It would not be at all
strange if, just as the Japanese Army (I am here distinguishing
it from the Self Defense Forces) perished in only one hundred
years, the cities perish after ten thousand.
* * *
Let us take a look at the origin of the city. At the time when
human beings kept themselves alive by hunting, fishing, and
gathering, it seems that there were no cities. And there were
probably no cities even after the beginning of agriculture, when
people made farm implements, clothing, and houses while tilling
the soil. Why was it that way? It was because at that time people
gathered their own food or produced it themselves, and in this
kind of world there is no need for the cities.


In Japan this corresponds to the period of time from the latter
half of the Jomon Period to the first half of the Yayoi Period
(the first half of the Jomon Period and the time prior to that
does not concern us here). During the Jomon Period, in which the
economy was based on gathering, the resources in any one given
area were limited, so that if the population increased this
would cause a shortage. It was therefore impossible for people to
concentrate in one place; they kept moving around so that there
were always small numbers of people living scattered over the
land (just as wild animals stake out their own territory). There
was some cooperation in their life of hunting, fishing, and
gathering, but for the most part each person took part in
gathering, making religious offerings, and dividing up the food
according to the customs of the group (Yazaki Takeo, The
Developmental Process of Japanese Cities).


Under such an economic system it was impossible to store
anything for a long time, so there were no rich and no poor.
Since this was a society which had no written records, the people
had to depend upon their rich knowledge of past experience for
the methods by which they adapted to the extremities of Nature,
and this was the reason that experienced elders were respected,
and in positions of leadership as the heads of groups.


In those days each individual made all tools for gathering and
for consumption, so that there was no one who specialized in
handicraft, and thus no distinctions of social position. Even the
head of a group did not step out of his bound, for the head of a
group, while leading, did not exploit. [24]


The Yayoi culture came from the continent (China). Therefore the
transition to the metal culture was not a natural development of
the Jomon culture, but a revolutionary change that occurred
suddenly as a result of the influence of the continental culture.


The technology of wet rice agriculture also came to Japan at
this time. Rice became a staple food along with those things
obtained by hunting and fishing. It became possible for people to
live sedentary lives in the vicinity of their fields; communities
increased their supportive power, and there appeared villages of
several hundred families. People began to work together ever more
closely, and there were divisions in social functions. On the
whole, society took on a class structure that was based upon
power.


Land, which was the principal means by which each family made
its living, was not individually owned, but held in common by the
village, and so it was necessary to tightly control the use of
land and water, and the distribution of agricultural implements
and labor. The headman succeeded to this position of authority.


One can sense that the birth of the city is nigh, but in the
first part of the Yayoi Period people were still abiding by the
law of Nature, which states that one must either gather or
produce one's own food. Even the village headman still had to
grow his own rice.

The City's Origins

When did the city make its appearance in Japan? We may say that
it happened when the gods marked the human race for ruin. When a
system made up of the dominators and the dominated, the
exploiters and the exploited, became necessary, the city came
into existence as none other than the mechanism of domination and
exploitation (see note 24).


Whether it be Mesopotamia, Egypt, China, or whatever place where
ancient civilizations arose, the city did most decidedly not
arise as an instrument for the prosperity of civilization (or
culture); it was without doubt a mechanism for idleness and
gluttony set up by the dominators and their ilk, as well as those
hangers on who hoped to profit, such as merchants and craftsmen.
Urban civilization (culture) is nothing more than a means of
achieving idleness and gluttony.


In Japan the city appeared in the latter part of the Yayoi
Period. Technology (culture) developed, the scale of communities
expanded, and the social organization became complicated. As a
result the various regions took on distinctive cultures based on
their respective functions, and there appeared villages which
were groups of people specializing in the manufacture of clay,
stone, or metal implements. Groups of people whose sole
occupation was the manufacture of things -- this was without a
doubt the beginning of the city.


Just as I stated in Chapter I, the city is the base of the
secondary and tertiary industries, or the place which is home to
those employed by those industries; it is none other than the
organization of idleness and gluttony. If there are even a few
people who, finding their sole employment in the secondary and
tertiary industries, make their living at it (or if there is the
possibility of such), then we must consider this the beginning of
the city. Scholars believe that in the latter part of the Yayoi
Period there were people whose sole occupation was the
manufacture of things, and this means that the city came into
being at that time.


There is no proof that in the later Yayoi the group heads --
that is, the dominators -- grew no food but were engaged solely
in politics. But judging from the general conditions in late
Yayoi society (particularly the considerable advances in
technology, and the furthering of functional divisions in the
economy), it is possible that there were a few group heads who
filled their bellies by engaging solely in politics (in the Tomb
Period there were countless such people). It is here that I see
the origin of the city.


And if we agree with those who say that the city was created by
merchants, then, whether they dealt in necessities or luxuries,
with the appearance of even a small-scale place where the
merchants work (i.e., the market), we must again consider this
the birth of the city. In the late Yayoi there was of course
bartering, but there is no evidence that this was conducted by
those who did nothing but barter (perhaps full-time merchants did
not make their appearance until the Nara Period). In addition we
find there were Buddhist monks and Shinto priests, as well as
soldiers and bureaucrats, who are the very models of idleness and
gluttony, and they came in droves to the early cities.


From the continent came Buddhism, and from the Tomb Period to
the Nara Period, the number of monks increased steadily; it is
said that in the 32nd year of Empress Suiko's reign [623] there
were 46 temples and 1,385 monks and nuns. Public officials and
soldiers no doubt showed a similar increase. There were 12 gates
surrounding Itabuki Palace of Empress Kogyoku [reigned 642-645]
in Asuka, and there were guards posted at each one of them.


In the fifth century the Yamato state unified the land,
establishing the Jingikan and the Daijokan departments in the
central government; in the Daijokan there was a Prime Minister,
as well as others like a Minister of the Left, and a Minister of
the Right. Under them there were eight ministries, which handled
all the business of the state, and a system of officials. The
land was divided up into Kinai, and seven Regions, and the seven
Regions were further divided into over sixty locally governed
provinces. These were further divided into smaller districts and
villages. And to govern all of these the state appointed
provincial governors, district governors, village heads, and so
on.


When the capital was based in Nara there were, among those
assembled in the city, over 130 persons who were what we may call
the aristocracy, and the officials, including those down to the
lowest ranks, numbered about ten thousand (the population of Nara
at that time was 200,000). And since these officials, monks, and
priests had their attendants, assistants, concubines, servants,
errand boys, and slaves, it would seem that the greater part of
the 200,000 people living in Nara in some way or another belonged
to the temples, shrines, and the palace.

The City as a Means of Supporting Idleness and Gluttony

In this way the city came into being, underwent transformation,
and developed. To put it more simply, politics brought the city
into being as a place for domination (exploitation). Those who
wished to fill their bellies under the wing of the rulers
gathered in the same place, thus causing the growth of the city
as an organ of exploitation.


Now let us take a jump into the future.


The city as a political entity has a 5,000-year history, but it
is said that the industrial city has at best a 200-year history.
According to Toshi Mondai no Kiso Chishiki ["Basic Knowledge of
Urban Problems"], "Ancient cities were by and large organs of
exploitation built upon a ruler, the priesthood, and the
military, but with the advancement of industrialization,
exchange and division of labor became the principal means of
control in the social organization, and when that happened the
scale and form of the city changed fundamentally. [25] These
phenomena, known as industrialization, and urbanization in the
age of industrialization, transcend the differences between
capitalist and socialist states, as well as the differences
between developed and undeveloped nations. [26] These are, we may
say, phenomena which represent a change common to the whole
world."


In this quote the author is describing the limitless expansion of
the modern city that I spoke of in Chapter I, "Urban Sprawl."
This is the problem that we must concern ourselves with solely;
what I wanted to get a general idea of here was whether or not it
is historical fact that the ancient city, which is the ancestor
of the modern city, came into being as a system (even on a small
scale) made up of the dominators and the dominated, and the
exploiters and the exploited, and if it arose in order to
establish a World of Laws [27] (a society based upon laws devised
by human beings) for idleness and gluttony. And I also wanted to
know if the city, which now stands before us like the Rock of
Gibraltar, was really born long ago as humanity's golden banner,
and if, in a Natural World (a world governed by the laws of
Nature), it is a necessity.


I wonder if it was really the wish of Nature that the city come
into being?


By looking into the past we have been able to get an idea,
however vague, of the process by which the city came into being,
and just as we thought, it came into being at the hands of master
politicos and men of the cloth as a means of abandoning
agricultural labor, skillfully plundering the fruits of the
farmers' labor, and achieving idleness and gluttony. To put it
even more tersely, the city came into being the moment such
activities began. It is virtually impossible for the city to come
into being any other way. According to the previous quote, the
ancient city was an organ of exploitation, and this is the
essence of the modern city as well. The only difference is that
the modern city has made it possible to plunder more skillfully,
in a more complex manner, and in greater amounts. To put it
another way, it was not the desire of the farmers (the country,
that is, the Natural World) that the city came into being. It is
true that many farmers helped to build the palaces, but this was
corvee labor exacted at the request (or rather the command) of
the city. I am quite sure that an examination of history will
show that the farmers did not willingly have anything to do with
the establishment of the city. The city, in other words, was
brought into existence by the urban ego itself, and not at the
request of the Natural World or the country; it was not born as
the golden banner under which all are to gather naturally.


The city is therefore a foreign body borne by the World of Laws;
its existence is merely temporary, and we would be better off
without it.


The city: Is it not the crystallization of human greed and
wickedness? (Convenience and extravagance and ease. Trinkets and
gewgaws and amusement. Progress and change and expansion.
Plundering and destruction and contamination...)


Therefore we should not feel a sense of loss at the
disappearance of the city. It will, in the near future, perish
anyway because of dwindling natural resources and nuclear war. So
we must realize that it would not be such a terrible thing to get
rid of the cities.

Supplementary Remarks

In just the last 5,000 years human beings have achieved rapid
progress. Even the Jomon Period was a mere 10,000 years ago. When
we consider it in the light of the millions of years since
humanity appeared, 10,000 years is only the most recent few
moments of our existence.


It is extremely unusual that we should have achieved such fatal
development in this short a time. Perhaps we should assume that
the gods have, during this short time, allowed humanity this
rapid progress. Let us note the fact that wild animals have shown
no progress in millions of years, for foxes and raccoons are
still living the same lives as foxes and raccoons. The rapid
changes, increasing complexity of social structure, and
urbanization achieved by humanity in the last 5,000 years must
seem extremely unusual when considered in the light of Nature's
timeless cycle. The city: the final, transient bubble of human
history. It would not be strange at all if the gods had chosen
the city as the means to destroy humanity.


The city is the explosive that will bring about the ruin of
humanity. If we assume that in order to cause the manufacture of
that explosive, Nature took the unusual step of allowing us a
single great leap in progress in a short period of time, then
this was either done on a whim of Nature (the gods) or a severe
test by the laws of evolution (yes, I will say evolution here).


The gods gave human beings wisdom (by means of evolution), and
that wisdom built the city. The city has visited us with a
crisis. When the laws of evolution led to wisdom, the gods
perhaps decided to use humanity in an experiment to see what
would happen. The gods are no doubt grinning and watching to see
what happens to the human beings who think themselves so clever
since they have invented jet planes and computers, recombined
genes, and made nuclear weapons and nuclear power plants. [28]


To the gods: You granted humanity wisdom, but I don't believe
you meant that wisdom to be used in vain for progress, expansion,
and prosperity.


To the people: How about giving up the use of this wisdom for
the attainment of convenience and development, and using it
instead now for regression and austerity? And how about, if not
eradicating the cities, at least resolving to shrink the cities?


Let us get rid of nuclear weapons. And while we're at it, let's
tear down the nuclear reactors. Let's remove escalators and
automatic doors. Let's drastically reduce the numbers of jets and
automobiles. Let's give up traveling abroad (and that goes for
trips within the country as well -- being one with the land also
means that we remain stationary). Let's cancel the construction
of airports. Stop using moving walkways and walk with your legs
instead. Stop using pulp to make idiotic comic books, handbills,
and wrapping paper. Let's stop the manufacture of cigarettes,
detergents, and food additives. Let's stop taking so much
medicine. Reduce further the amounts of agricultural chemicals
and chemical fertilizers. Let's stop building so many roads.
Let's leave the seashore in its natural state. In order to shrink
the cities let's send the extra labor to the farms. Let's promote
the redistribution and further division of land. Let's all work
hard for the production of food that isn't poisoned. Weed the
fields and gardens by hand, and return compost to the soil.


There is no limit to that which we must do for scaling down,
regression, and austerity. It is for these things that humanity
must use the gift of the gods (wisdom) to its fullest extent.


People! (Assuming that the gods are even a little bit good),
they know that wisdom is a double edged sword, and they are
testing us to see how we will use it.

CHAPTER IV NOTES

24

Domination and exploitation are actually two sides of the same
coin. But if we must make a distinction, then domination is a
means of exploitation. It also follows that the city does not
come into being by means of domination without exploitation.

25

The scale and form of the modern city is basically different
from that of the ancient city, but in essence they are basically
the same. We should note that both the ancient and the modern
city are organizations for plunder and domination; the modern
city, by means of industrialization and technological innovation,
has grown to huge proportions.

26

In this instance, instead of saying that it transcends the
differences between developed and non-developed countries, we
should say that urbanization itself constitutes the efforts of
the non-developed countries to overtake the developed countries
by progress and development (or by means of living beyond their
means).

27

"World of Laws" and "Natural World" are terms from Ando Shoeki.
(Translator's note)

28

Truth is absolute, but good is relative. Since the gods are
absolute they are truth, but they cannot be good. To the farmers
the rice weevil is an evil, but to the manufacturers of
agricultural chemicals, it is a good. And to the gods the rice
weevil is, just like the farmers and manufacturers of
agricultural chemicals, merely another form of life.


It is nothing more than the arbitrary decision and wishful
thinking of human beings to believe that the gods are on the side
of good. This is where we find the fundamental error of religion.



CHAPTER V
Down with the Cities!

"Down with the cities!" means that the people of the cities will
survive, and "Prosperity for the cities!" means that the people
of the cities will perish.

If We Do Not Halt Urbanization, There Is No Future for Humanity
or the Earth

There is no problem with turning the entire planet into country,
but we must not turn it all into cities. If the entire planet is
country then, even though we cannot hope for an extravagant and
convenient life, the survival of humanity (as well as the lives
of all other living things) is completely assured. However, if
the entire planet is urbanized, then we cannot hope for our own
survival or that of any other living thing. This is because it is
impossible for the city to survive even for a day unless it
depends upon the country.


Anyone should be able to understand this much. Unless one has
gone completely bananas, it should be impossible to believe that
the city can keep itself alive. Yet in spite of this fact, every
day sees the loss of the country, and the expansion of the
cities. Just look at the donut phenomenon (the building of more
apartment complexes) occurring around the big cities. Just look
at the plastering of everything with concrete and the leisure
facilities along train lines and roads. Just look at how the
polluting industries are evacuating to the country. Just look at
the rise in tourism all over the country (tourist facilities
represent urbanization: cable cars, scenic roads, parking lots,
rest facilities, hotels, stores). And look also at the centers of
towns and villages that are now halfway between the city and the
country.


The cities continue their amoebae-like expansion. This limitless
prosperity of the cities means the decline and fall of the
country, which is the city's life line, and that means the
strangling of the city's prosperity, and the end of life for the
city.


If at this time people do not find the courage to curb
urbanization and begin the return of the city to the country, we
will have eternal regrets. Time has all but run out, and it may
already be too late. Still, we must do what can be done to
exercise the little remaining hope for humankind and the Earth.


We must get rid of the cities.

In Saving the City We Will Lose Everything

No matter what counterargument, no matter what reason there could
be, we cannot expect to save ourselves while preserving the city.
If we exterminate ourselves we will lose everything. [29] What
could be more important to us than our own survival?


Freedom? Will we still have to defend it even after we are gone?


Progress? Must we continue with it even if it means
self-destruction?


Scholarship? Must we still pursue it even if it drives us to
catastrophe?


Culture? Must we maintain it even if it brings about a crisis?


All these great and grand things will be worth nothing after we
are gone. It is the same for the prosperity of the nation-state,
the elevation of national prestige, the flourishing of a people,
and for convenience, extravagance, and ease, as well as
traditions and customs. Even while humanity is still around they
are not worth a pig's tail (this is because they come about by
oppressing and exploiting the country, and by destroying and
contaminating the environment, or they are the means whereby such
things are accomplished). How can there be a reason for
preserving such things when it means our own ruin?

ANDO SHOEKI:
A Great Sage Who Taught Us to Eradicate the Cities

"Scholarship and learning steal the way of tilling and gain the
respect of the people by means of idleness and gluttony; since
they are created by means of private law they are plots to steal
the Way. Therefore the more one engages in learning, the more one
glorifies the stealing of the Way. Learning is that which
therefore conceals this theft... Learning is scheming words meant
to deceive the people and eat gluttonously, and is a great fault.
Therefore the idleness and gluttony of the sages and Buddhas is a
stinking and filthy evil. Learning is a means of hiding this
stench and filth." (This quote and the following are taken from
The Struggle of Ando Shoeki by Terao Goro.) Ando Shoeki lived
during the Genroku Period (1703-1762), and was a doctor in
northern Honshu. A great pioneer sage who took a path taken by no
one before him, he is the only revolutionary thinker which Japan
can boast of to the world. [30]


Learning is not the Way of Heaven, but a means of achieving
idleness and gluttony which human beings created with private law
-- this is the truth which Shoeki expounded. We must not, I
should think, preserve the cities for the sake of that which
"conceals theft," thereby driving humanity to catastrophe.


"The sages of all the ages, the Buddhas, the bodhisattvas, the
arhat, Zhuangzi, Laozi, physicians, those who created the laws of
the gods, all scholars, ascetic practitioners, priests and monks
-- they are all the idle and gluttonous, the dregs of society who
steal the Way. Therefore all laws, the preaching of the Dharma,
and storytelling are all ways of justifying theft, and nothing
more. Their books, which number in the millions, all record
justifications for theft; the more wise their aphorisms, and the
more clever their turn of phrase, the more they justify theft,
and the more we must deplore them... They steal the Way,
establish their private laws, and live lives of idleness and
gluttony while lecturing on their various theories... They
deceive the people with their many theories in order to eat
gluttonously... Note well what they are doing...! We should
behead them."


And this is the reason why it has always been the object of
education to teach the techniques of idleness and gluttony. At
present, moreover, education is aiming for more than that. It is
no overstatement to say that, either directly or indirectly, all
education exists to bring upon us the catastrophic ruin in which
progress ends. If we intend to keep this from happening, we must
not preserve the cities.


"The way of agriculture... is the way found naturally in all
people; so we naturally till the soil, and naturally weave
clothes, that is, we produce our own food, and we weave our own
clothes; this comes before all other teachings."


You in the cities! We do not need all your extra baggage. The
way of direct cultivation [31] depends only upon the blessings of
Nature; it is the Way of Heaven in which we live by flowing with
Nature.


"When we carry on tilling and weaving by being in accordance
with the four seasons, with Nature, and with the advance and
retreat in the motions of the essences, we are living with the
Way of Heaven, and there will be, therefore, no irregularities in
the agricultural activities of human beings."


Nature is a cycle, and this cycle is eternity; in this
repetition there is no progress. Shoeki is saying that there must
be no progress or change in the agriculture which is carried on
in accordance with the flow of Nature (the cycle). Shoeki saw
from the beginning that progress in agriculture spurs on the
development of the secondary and tertiary industries, that is,
the city, thereby abetting the city's evils, which would in the
end wipe out humanity. It is idiocy to stubbornly defend that
which invites ruin, and that which invites ruin is the progress
of the city.

Business and Money are the Prime Evils

"Merchants do not till the soil; business in its profit-seeking
is the root of all evil.


"Merchants are gangsters who buy and sell... They come up with
schemes for increasing their profits, they curry favor with
rulers, deceive the scholars, farmers, and artisans, and compete
with each other in their profit-seeking... They are the men of
monstrous profits and harmful greed. They wish to make their way
through the world without tiring themselves with labor; they
curry favor with those both above and below themselves with
artifice, a servile countenance, flattery, and lies; they deceive
their own fathers, sons, and brothers... Immoral in the extreme,
even in their dreams they do not know of the natural way of human
beings.


"Money is the great originator of all desire and all evil. Since
the appearance of money we have lived in a world of darkness,
confused desires, and rampant evils."


Is it not exactly the same in the present day? Money and
Business -- they have always been the symbols of the city.


"And the master artisans, the makers of vessels, the weavers --
the sage uses them to build towers, fancy houses, and beautiful
chambers, or for military purposes. And the artisans curry favor
with those of all classes by means of artful language; seduced by
the lust for more commissions, they hope for the occurrence of
disasters."


In the present age we see parallels in the manufacture of such
needless, and often harmful, things like trinkets and gewgaws,
cars, cameras, televisions, jets, and computers, which only waste
resources and spew forth pollution, and in the fact that the
manufacturers of weapons and explosives hope that there will be a
war, that pharmaceutical companies hope there will be lots of
sick people, that manufacturers of agricultural chemicals hope
there will be more rice weevils, and that construction companies
hope there will be more natural disasters.


"Songs, dancing, chanting, teas ceremonies, go, backgammon,
gambling, drinking and carousing, the koto, the biwa, the
samisen, all arts, drama, plays... are the evil accomplices of
confusion and disorder; they are all worthless amusements of the
idle and gluttonous, and the businesses of pleasure; they are the
frivolity which destroys oneself and one's family."


Shoeki is saying that games and the arts are merely means for
achieving idleness and gluttony. Festivals! Amusement! Leisure!
say our modern tertiary industries (the city), investing great
amounts of resources, time, and money in their wild abandon to
idiotic entertainment and events. Shoeki's statement was a severe
criticism of just such things.

The Idle and Gluttonous Dominators "Should Simply be Put to
Death"

It is with this that Shoeki then concentrates his stinging attack
upon those in command of the secondary and tertiary industries
(the city, i.e., an assembly of the idle), their thieves' bosses,
the sages and clergymen (dominators), who are the very
incarnation of plunder.


"Those who eat gluttonously without tilling the soil are the
great criminals who steal the True Way of Heaven and Earth...
Though they be sages and men of the cloth, scholars, or great
wise men, they are still robbers.


"Sage is another name for criminal.


"The Confucian Gentlemen are the leaders of the highway robbers.


"Sage Emperor is another name for robber.


"Know ye that those of later ages will call them horse manure,
but they will not call them the scholars and the clergy. This is
because horse manure has more value." ("Scholars and the clergy"
here refers to the dominators and their ilk -- all harm and no
good.)


It would not do to get rid of these worthless and harmful
robbers and criminals (the leaders of the idle and gluttonous)
with such half-baked methods as trying to educate them. It is
impossible to change these inveterate robbers by talking with
them, by persuading them, or by educating them. Shoeki here makes
a timeless statement:


"They should simply be put to death" -- there is nothing to do
but to overthrow them. This is nothing other than a call to an
heroic, unparalleled revolution.


Of Ando Shoeki Terao Goro says, "Shoeki is worthy of being
called the Marx of the Genroku Period," but I think that Shoeki's
theory is backed by thorough revolutionary thought and a
penetrating view of society that far exceeds that of Marx, and is
more highly developed. Shoeki was a more radical revolutionary
thinker.

* * *

Whereas Marx sought the source of class confrontation in the
bourgeoisie and the proletariat, Ando Shoeki found it in those
who practice direct cultivation on the one hand, and the idle and
gluttonous on the other.


The factory workers, distributors, and buyers and sellers who
were, to Marx, "our camp," were not so to Shoeki, who thought
that they too belonged to the idle and gluttonous classes, and
that if we do not dismantle such a system, we will not be able to
realize a true "communistic society" (Natural World).


The Overthrow of the Urbanizing Mechanism Is Essential to a True
Revolution

Verily it was the dominators (feudal lords) and farm operators
who were the medium of plunder by which were fed the huge
secondary and tertiary industrial population -- the city -- which
loomed behind them. (The scholars, clergy, and officials were
subjectively the chief instigators of plunder, but objectively
they were merely the medium of plunder.) Shoeki insisted that,
before anything else, we must close the portal, we must block the
doorway of plunder.


These ideas are quite different from the theories of Marx, who
considered the medium of plunder (the bourgeoisie) to be the
ultimate enemy while believing that the great hordes of the idle
and gluttonous slithering in the shadow of the bourgeoisie were
the allies of the revolution. Shoeki was truly the first to
insist upon the eradication of the cities.


In Marxist revolution theory, there is a surprising -- and
actually quite fatal -- error in that it does not call for the
dismantling of the city, that is, the liquidation of the idle and
gluttonous. Without the overthrow of the urbanizing mechanism in
human society -- a mechanism which cannot but engender the
formation of the idle and gluttonous hordes -- we cannot achieve
true revolution.


So just take a look, please, at where the spreading world
socialist revolution is leading (even if it is but a precursor of
the communist revolution): power, oppression, progress,
expansion, modernization, urbanization, industrialization,
militarization, destruction, contamination, prodigality, and
corruption.

A Natural World in which All Till the Soil Directly, and There
Are No Groups of Idlers

The "natural world" that Shoeki imagined had no exploitation or
oppression whatsoever; its aim was a self-governing commune with
common ownership, labor by all, and equality. It was a primitive
communist society which could not be realized without, first of
all, the overthrow of the bloodsucking ruling class, and then
that of the non-tilling idlers (those who contaminate and
destroy). It was a society of contraction, regression, austerity,
and one in which all practiced direct cultivation.


If one leaves the great hordes of the idle, plundering, and
gluttonous just as they are, and then tries to achieve the
transition to communistic society (of course, this assumes the
abolition of capitalist society), can we really expect the
establishment of a utopia in which there are neither the
exploiters nor the exploited?


Sorry to say, agriculture has always had a relationship of
confrontation with business and the manufacturing industries, as
well as with the tertiary industries. The famous Meiji-era
Marxist, Dr. Kawakami Hajime, lamented, saying, "If agriculture
declines, how can business and industry prosper?" But in his book
Respect for Japanese Agriculture he wrote, "The development of a
healthy national economy depends upon the balanced prosperity of
agriculture, industry, and business." Ever true to Marxism, he
did not at all notice the antagonism between agriculture on the
one hand, and industry and business on the other.


And so the modern socialist revolution, which does not include
the dismantling of the urbanization mechanism, is not in the
least what could be called a revolution, for it is merely a
system in which the corrupt bosses plunder the produce of the
regime in place of the aristocracy and the bourgeoisie, and this
holds even if they are able to make the transition to the
communist revolution, but have not dismantled the cities. In
other words, we end up with a situation in which state power, in
place of the bourgeoisie, carries out oppression and
exploitation. This is a mere passing of power from one hand to
another (I will disregard here the relative merits and demerits
of the various regimes), so that there is no real difference
between the old regime and any new one brought to power by an
election victory. Perhaps this is the reason that both the
Socialist Party and the Communist Party switched their tactics to
those of emphasis on election campaigns.

Military Power, Religion, and Money as Instruments of Domination

From long ago, force of arms and religion have been used as the
means of domination. In a state governed by laws, it looks as
though laws take the place of these, but behind the laws is the
force of arms (the military and the police), and out in plain
view is money, about which I shall have more to say later. And
the backbone of laws is religion, which includes morals, ethics,
tradition, and customs.


There is no need to say much about military power. Control and
oppression by military force, a conventional technique, is very
common, with just a few examples being the ancient attempts to
subjugate the Korean peninsula, the struggles between the Taira
and Minamoto, the Warring States, the feudalist military
government, Manchuria, the China Incident, and so on without
limit. In addition, as everyone knows, in between these big wars
and incidents the dominators were constantly making use of
military force to gain power for themselves. And the present
military, though they call themselves the Self Defense Forces,
will, when the time comes, point their guns in this direction.


I will have to say a little about religion. I speak here not
only of Buddhism, Shinto, Christianity, and the new religions,
but also of all blind faith and superstitions. There is no
telling how, from ancient times, the blind faith of loyalty
(originally Confucianism) has been an advantage to the
dominators, and a disadvantage to the dominated. Good examples of
this are the elimination of those in the way by harakiri, and the
honoring of the war dead at Yasukuni Shrine. The dominators have
always deceived us with superstitions which say that if we are
not perfectly loyal, we will be punished. And now the blind faith
in the omnipotence of science [32] is making possible the
augmentation of the city's functions, thereby inviting the growth
of the plundering classes.


The traditional religions teach us not to become attached to
material things, and as proof to that they tell us to make
offerings. Show the extent of your belief, they say, with a
widow's mite. And in this way, with each small drop adding to
their ocean of wealth, they have built not only their head
temples and headquarters, but boast of their branch temples,
missions, and other splendorous buildings, ostentatiously display
their decorations, feed their priests and officials, and scale
the heights of prosperity with only contemptuous regard for the
poverty of the people. And very important here is the fact that
the dominators, in the shadow of religion, have used these
religious teachings as tools for the placation of the people, and
through exchange have offered the riches concentrated in the
shrines and temples as the capital resource for domination. This
is without a doubt the reason that the central government has,
from the Tomb Period through the Nara and Heian Periods, helped
the religions prosper.

If We Banish Money, the Cities Will Perish

In addition to the force of arms and religion, money has been an
instrument of domination and exploitation.


Money: It would be hard to find anything else that is so
convenient, so easily used, so powerful an instrument of
domination. The arrogant belief that, as long as one has money,
one can do anything, is not mere arrogance; money is in actuality
the mechanism by which the functions and activities of the city
are supported, and the means by which people so freely manipulate
the city's functions in order to bring about prosperity. The
reason burglars and thieves (in this case I am not referring to
the dominators) always take money is because they too, as long as
they have money, can get anything they want, be it goods or
services. Big shot politicos get sweaty palms at the thought of
fat bribes because as long as they have money they can feed great
numbers of hangers-on and wield great power.


Simple logic, then (and here we at last come to the stage where
we get rid of the cities), dictates that all we have to do to get
rid of the cities is banish money.


This is not idle speculation, for the Cambodian regime of Pol
Pot actually proved it could be done (forgive me for harping on
this one example, but no other government has had the guts to do
the same thing).


Proving no exception to the rule, the growing urbanization
phenomenon in the developing countries has brought about
unfavorable trade imbalances and the devastation of the
countryside, as well as the importation of food, which engenders
even more losses of foreign currency. No matter how high the
government raises its voice and orders the citizens to till the
fields, once the people have had a taste of idleness and gluttony
they squat in the city and refuse to budge. The Pol Pot regime,
which had come to the end of its rope, prohibited the use of
money and made everyone barter. So the citizens, who could no
longer get food with money, went from one farming village to
another in search of food, and the capital of Pnom Penh
immediately became a ghost town. This was a great experiment
which proved that, without dropping a single bomb, and by merely
banishing money, the glory of the city can be wiped out in the
space of a day.

Criticism of the Productivity Remarks by Sony's Honorary Chairman

Ibuka Masaru, the honorary chairman of Sony, said, "There is a
1,500-fold difference in productivity between agriculture and
industry." (A statement made during a committee meeting on the
issue of internationalization in agriculture, and included in the
book Food, published by the Asahi Shimbun.) He also said, "Rather
than having the farmers produce crops, it would be better to hand
them money and let them be idle." And, "All agriculture should be
transferred to Southeast Asia." [33] He even declared that
"hanging on to an industry which has lost its competitiveness is
none other than a big loss to the country."


A difference of 1,500 times -- this means that agriculture has
but 1/1,500th the productive capacity of industry, and is
therefore a great loss to the country. What a jump in logic that
is. It is natural that there is a difference in the productivity
of industry, which night and day produces things in time
intervals of minutes and seconds, and agriculture, which harvests
farm products only once or twice a year. So if we proceed along
the same logical lines, it means that we must destroy all
farmland in the world and build upon it efficient factories.


So, Mr. Chairman, let us assume that the cities of Japan end as
Phnom Penh did (ultimately it will surely happen when the food
runs out). If you try to exchange 1,500 Sony transistor radios
for one bag of rice, do you think the farmers will listen? Even
if a farmer received 1,500 essentially worthless transistor
radios, he would not even have a place to put them.


Mr. Chairman. If industry has 1,500 times the productive
capacity of agriculture, then does it not make sense to say that
agricultural products should have 1,500 times the value of
industrial products? This is the reason that, if we were to
barter, you would not even be able to get one bag of rice for
1,500 Sony products. This is a good example of how the
interposition of money has evilly exploited farm produce.

There Are no Mice with the Requisite Bravery

We have seen that if we banish money, industry will perish,
commerce will languish, the services will tread water, and the
cities will die, but is there a mouse with the bravery to put a
bell around the cat's neck? Outside of Pol Pot, there is probably
not a mouse in the whole world with the bravery to try it.


As long as "the government" does not find the resolve to banish
money, it will not be possible, but if we get rid of money, the
first to be put out on a limb is none other than "the
government" itself. Is it possible that any government in the
world could find the guts to make the rope for its own hanging?


Money: The means by which domination and exploitation can be
most easily and effectively achieved. It is inconceivable that
people would abandon it, at least voluntarily. (Of course, if the
situation grows objectively worse on a global scale, money will
perforce change into worthless little pieces of paper and metal.)

Is Stopping the Food Supply Possible?

The reason that the city would perish immediately with the
banishment of money is that the city would be unable to purchase
food. (With the banishment of money the movements of raw
materials, wastes, and merchandise will slow, and the functioning
of the city will become paralyzed, but the city will not perish
immediately.) But if we carry our thinking one step further, we
see that, even if we do not get rid of money, we can get rid of
the cities by merely shutting off the food supply.


There is no doubt that, if shipments of food stopped right now,
the mountains of food in the grocery stores would not even last
two days. No matter how badly the residents of the cities want to
stay there, no matter how well they hunker down, no matter how
many new and wonderful machines they make, no matter how rare the
arts they display, no matter how far they pursue abstruse
learning, they cannot do a thing on an empty belly, so they will
all abandon the cities, crying, and go to the country in search
of food. Thus the cities will become ghost towns.


Cutting off the supply of food is, at the distribution stage,
known as shipping refusal. If the farming cooperatives would find
the bravery to do this, cutting off the food supply would not be
impossible. But sad to say, the co-op is on the side of the city;
it is the city itself. Even if the heavens and the earth reversed
themselves, it is doubtful that the co-op would ever stand with
the farmers. The co-op makes it look as though it is the ally of
the farmers, but this is a mere gesture. Anyone will tell you
that, if there were to be a rice shortage, the co-op, which is
the wicked agent for the city's plundering, would never let the
city starve, even if it had to scratch together every last grain
of the farmers' rice stocks.


So much for the co-op. There is no need to discuss the traders
and the wholesalers. Shipping refusal would, ultimately, end in
total failure.

The Mammonistic Farmers Cannot Become Revolutionaries

Would it be possible, then, for the farmers to refuse to sell?
This would not be impossible if the farmers would not fear
repression, if they would steadfastly refuse to supply the city
with food even if the military came with their guns, and there
was a little bloodshed. The city can live a bit longer by
importing food (the president of Sony can take charge when the
time comes), but that cannot be helped. How long the city can
keep itself alive depends upon the skill of the president.


The real problem, as I see it, is that among the farmers there
are quite a few mammonists who have for some time been nursed
along by the money economic system. There are without a doubt
great numbers of traitors. If there are many farmers who, taking
advantage of a food shortage, sell food for high prices in
secret deals, any efforts to stop the sale of food to the city
are bound to end in failure. The "farmer power" of those farmers
who gird their loins and go into Tokyo to demonstrate is actually
greed power. It is their greed which gives the city a place into
which it can dig its claws. The city then rips off great amounts
of food for a mere pittance (or for loans).


Ah, the pitiful farmers! This greedy egotism is the
(historically and socially inevitable) pathetic mentality that
has been deeply implanted in the farmers who for generations have
suffered from the poverty brought about by cruel plundering. Was
this the reason Marx chose the city laborers as the soldiers in
his revolution instead of the farmers?

* * *

To say "Refuse to sell food!" or "Down with the cities!" seems
extremely cruel and subversive, but it is nothing compared to the
unmitigated robbery and tyranny that the city has committed
during the last five thousand years.

It Is the Plundering and Destructive Idlers Who Are the
Subversive Elements

When we say "Down with the cities!" we do not at all mean that we
should kill all the city dwellers. We are merely saying, "Give up
your extravagance." We are saying, "Stop your insatiable
plundering." We are saying, "Dismantle that mechanism of
plunder." We are saying, "Let us create a society of austerity in
which all practice direct cultivation." [34]


Why is it cruel and seditious to say "Give up being a robber"?
Why is it wrong to say "Stop driving others into poverty so that
you can, by their sacrifices, live an extravagant life"?


Long ago the farmers, no longer able to bear the burden of harsh
exploitation, sent representatives to the feudal lords to plead
for reductions in the amount of rice they had to send as
tribute. The reply was, "You insolents! Do you not fear your
master? Such effrontery cannot be forgiven!" And they were
decapitated. This is outrageous. The insolents were the feudal
lords (idlers) who, in order to continue their own extravagance
and gluttony, cruelly robbed the farmers. And their spirit of
idleness comes all the way down to our modern city. Even now if
we were to say, "Stop plundering for your own extravagance!"
"Stop destroying for your own ease!" or "Be satisfied with a life
of austerity!" the city would surely consider us subversive
elements, and look upon us with severe disapproval. The real
subversive elements are the city dwellers themselves, who
continue their rapacious and destructive ways as if it is their
natural right, who nonchalantly continue their lives of
convenience, while contentedly patting their fat bellies.

Should We Be "Thankful" for Urban Civilization?

As I mentioned at the beginning of this chapter, there are many
who believe that the flourishing of civilization and culture is
more important than anything else; that the city, the value of
which is absolute, is contributing 100 percent to such; and that
the city is sacred and must not be desecrated. Though I have
already said quite a bit on this subject, I would here like to go
into it in a little more detail.


For example, the believers say that the civilization of the
Shinkansen train and the jet has made considerable contributions
to politics, economics, and culture. A company of singers that
performs in Tokyo at noon can give the same performance in Osaka
in the evening. "Is this not a wonderful world we live in?" they
say. Who are they kidding? This silver-tongued, idiotic lot of
singers, these idle and gluttonous bloodsuckers, go from Tokyo to
Osaka on the Shinkansen which wastes incredible amounts of
energy, assaults our ears with noise, and runs on rails over the
concrete ties which are destroying the land. Then in Osaka they
sing the same idiotic songs. Now, tell me what I should be
thankful for. Should I be thankful for the activities of such
people who, with each passing minute, bring about the increasing
devastation of the Earth?


Politicians can take jets to other countries, thereby enabling
them to take care of important political affairs in little time,
and the believers claim that this is a blessing of our modern
urban civilization. They say that the ability of international
traders to jet to other countries and quickly conclude business
deals is due to the same. And they say that, thanks to the jet
civilization, it is possible for old and young alike to freely go
to other countries, learn more abut the world and soak up
culture.


Let us not be fooled. When politicians hurry to other countries
by jet and confer with other politicians, it is almost always to
insure the progress and prosperity of their own countries. And as
I have said before, progress and prosperity are inseparable from
environmental contamination and the destruction of the Earth.
Should we really be thankful when politicians, in order to
discuss such things, jet to other countries, destroy the ozone
layer, waste energy, produce noise pollution, and do it all with
tax money?


When international traders (the "economic animals") go to other
countries, the purpose is of course to plunder the developing
nations, or to suck up to the industrialized nations (although an
overabundance of merchandise in their warehouses is clearly the
result of squandering resources and squeezing labor to produce
more than is necessary, they believe implicitly that this state
has come about because other countries do not buy, so they try to
hard-sell more by dumping). Should we be thankful that they hurry
by jet to other countries so that they can cause trouble for the
developing countries and cause more trade friction with the
industrialized countries?


Everyone and his dog are going to foreign countries these days.
Quiz programs on television usually bait people with promises of
foreign travel. What are all these people whizzing off to other
countries for, on the jets that boast of being the worst
polluters? Is it to see the rare beauty of foreign scenery? Are
there no mountains in Japan? Is there no ocean? There is little
difference between the ocean at Boso and that in Hawaii. In the
mountains near their homes there are places they are unfamiliar
with. All those people who have no time to consider the
appearance of a single tree, to feel the pathos of a single
blade of grass -- what do they expect to experience abroad? Is it
that the scale is different? If you pine after magnificence, then
stand where you are and look up at the sun's great orb. Lift your
eyes to the night sky and gaze at the cosmos.


What? Your want to research foreign sexual customs? You
lecherous slobs! [35]


Travel abroad in the name of study and training is none other
than for the purpose of learning the techniques of idleness and
gluttony, or to make preparations for contamination and
destruction. Even in Japan there is much of this going on, but in
whatever country it is the extreme of evil. Are we supposed to be
thankful when people go abroad for sightseeing, sex, or study,
and then come back bug-eyed with amazement? Are we supposed to be
thankful that, because of their activities, the Earth is more
devastated minute by minute?


The "wonderful world we live in" is the "city." We must take
drastic measures to get rid of the city.

Even If We Do Not Eradicate the Cities, They Are Fated to Perish

But the city has underestimated the situation. "If you think it's
possible to get rid of the cities, then go ahead and try," it
says. "What can you accomplish in your frenzied condition?"


Well, this certainly is true. Once the city realizes that it is
impossible to banish currency or get the farmers and co-ops to
stop food shipments, it is natural to sit back and relax, for the
city is right.


However, let us note once more that, though we cannot get rid of
the cities by our own actions, the cities are in actuality bound
to perish (I will treat this in a later chapter). The city's
underestimation of the situation will lead to its own fall in the
near future.


The depletion of mineral resources, the drying up of the oil
fields, nuclear war, the destruction and contamination of the
environment, food shortages, economic panic, computers, robots,
overproduction, backlogged inventories, trade friction, violence
by the unemployed -- these will all lead to uninhabited cities.
But the city's swaggering, unconcerned attitude toward these
things will only bring about a crises state that much sooner. As
long as the city continues to underestimate the dangers, to waste
without a moment's afterthought, to make more nuclear weapons, to
urbanize farmland, to change the forests to desert, to
contaminate the land and the sea, to develop convenient machines,
to produce an overabundance of goods -- as long as the city
continues in this manner, how many more years can it live without
a care?


The prophet Nostradamus, who has been 99 percent accurate, says
that in July 1999 the Great King of Fear will come down from the
sky, and humanity will face annihilation. This would seem to be
right on target, since the cities are heading for destruction at
full speed, and will probably perish at that very time.
Unfortunately, this bit of prophecy cannot but hit the bull's
eye.

There Will Be No Cities in the Twenty-First Century

The cities are bound to perish, and they have not long to live.
Even if we do nothing but stand by and twiddle our thumbs, the
cities will suffer automatic annihilation.


There will be no cities in the twenty-first century. It is
nonsensical to believe that in the next century the Earth will be
covered with 20 million cities. This is almost the same as the
estimate that, should the population continue to increase at the
present rate (and assuming the absence of epidemics, war, and
starvation), population density 700 years hence will be such that
there is one person per each square foot, including the
mountains. If people estimate that in the twenty-first century 20
million cities will swell to cover the Earth, then it is for that
very reason that the cities will perish. And if they estimate
that the population density will become such that there is one
person for every square foot of land, then it is for that very
reason that humanity will perish.


There is no doubt that this will come to pass. The rails have
been laid, and the city is rolling along right on course. From
whatever angle, and with however sympathetic eyes, we look at the
city, we cannot but conclude that it is bound to perish by reason
of the urbanization phenomenon itself.


Even now, Nostradamus is surely watching from afar, boasting
over the accuracy of his prediction, and laughing at the
insatiable progress, prosperity, and obsessive delusions of us
human beings.


I will say it once more: The cities are bound to perish. Even if
I were to swing at the ground with a maul and miss, there is no
mistake in predicting so. Even if the sun rises in the west, and
even if the rivers run upstream, there is no way to stop the
annihilation of the cities. Verily, in the next century the city
must make reparations for its 5,000 years of wickedness.

The Only Way to Save Ourselves and the Earth Is to Cut Ourselves
Off from the City

But if the cities are bound to perish anyway, why not just let
things go on as they are? many will say.


The fact is, we cannot just sit around and wait for it to
happen, because it will then be too late. The cities are trying
to ruin the whole Earth in order that they themselves will
perish. We must not allow ourselves to be dragged down with them.
Though it may appear cowardly, we must cut ourselves off from the
cities before that time comes.


Cutting ourselves off from the cities will first of all help
prevent their further expansion, and begin their contraction. And
this is not impossible, for our ancestors long ago did the same
thing. Let us not allow this to be a mere dream; let us try to
use that one slim chance given humanity and the Earth.

Now is the Time to Escape from the City

I now appeal to the people in the city to give up those white
collar jobs and get out of the city.


If even one of you leaves the city and takes up farming, that
makes possible the contraction of the city by 1/9,000,000th. It
also makes possible the lessening of the city's evils by the same
1/9,000,000th.


Escape from the city is not only the victim's flight from the
city, which he feels cannot last much longer, but it is also a
withdrawal from the position of the malefactor -- those
accomplices of evil, the city dwellers who refuse to budge.


And I also want to appeal to those in the farming villages to
stop producing vast quantities of food, and to embark on
self-sufficient farming.


For every one of you that ends your dependence on the city
(actually the dependence of the city on you) and becomes an
independent farmer, we will be able to chase 1/90,000,000th of
the city's population out of the city, and reduce the city's
evils by the same amount. (At present 10 percent of the Japanese
population farms, and the other 90 percent lives in the cities.
This works out to one farmer feeding nine idlers, so for every
one farmer that stops feeding the city, we can shrink the city by
nine people.)


The city is, of course, perfectly free to feed itself with food
imports. It can import all the vegetables, fruit, meat, and eggs
that it likes. When the time comes, the president of Sony can
take charge.


Becoming an independent farmer -- I can call this the "Bagworm
Revolution."


The combined effect of leaving those white collar jobs and
becoming an independent farmer will without a doubt prevent the
expansion of the cities and begin their contraction. I am sure
that this is the one ray of light, the one hope, we have of
assuring our survival, and we must take advantage of it before
the cities see their final collapse.

CHAPTER V NOTES

29

Optimists will say, "Humanity will not necessarily perish
because of the cities. As a matter of fact, it is not impossible
that, because of the progress of science and technology, we will
perpetuate ourselves by the acceleration of prosperity." But
before coming at me with this counterargument, they must prove
the following:
->

that no matter how many resources we squander, they will never
run out.
->

that no matter how much we contaminate the atmosphere and the
oceans, it will not affect living things.
->

that the more drugs and food additives we ingest, the healthier
we will become.
->

that matter (trash) is not imperishable, that it can be
destroyed.
->

that the more land we cover with concrete, the greater our
chances of survival.
->

that nuclear weapons were made so that they would not be used
(in other words, that Hiroshima and Nagasaki were exceptions).


And there are still zillions more that they must prove! And what
is really important is that the opposite of each one of these
zillions is extremely easy to prove.

30

See E. Herbert Norman, Ando Shoeki and the Anatomy of Japanese
Feudalism. Reprint edition published in 1979 by University
Publications of America, Inc. (Translator's note)

31

A term of Shoeki's which means that all people grow their own
food. (Translator's note)

32

This blind faith is implanted in us, on a national, yea, an
international scale, from the time we are in elementary school,
and we have come to the point where there is no greater "faith"
than this.


To the question, "Science is the standard for everything; if we
cannot believe in science, then what must we believe in?" one
must reply, "There is only the Way of Heaven. The Way of Nature
is a cycle with neither progress nor development; wild animals
commit themselves to this cycle and live out their lives this
way. Blind faith in science is a privilege given only to human
beings, but unfortunately they will perish in the near future
because of scientific progress.

33

The land in Southeast Asian countries is the precious means of
food production to those who live there (there are also the
forests which maintain the ecosystem and convert carbon dioxide
into oxygen for us). It is preposterous to abandon the
agriculture of one's own country and invade another. Such
arrogant corporate minds crowd the cities of the entire world so
that now reckless development runs rampant in Southeast Asia,
Africa, and the Amazon basin, and desertification and devastation
of the land proceed at an astonishing pace.


It is said that "before civilization there are trees; after
civilization there is desert," and this will probably come to
pass since the land is being sacrificed for the sake of today's
prosperity, and in time we will find the survival of all things
on Earth (including ourselves) seriously threatened ("The
Twenty-First Century's Warning," special program aired on NHK,
November 8, 1984 at 8 p.m.).

34

Japan has six million hectares of arable land, and this works
out to five ares per person. One person can probably grow enough
on five ares to live. It is therefore possible for all 220
million Japanese to become direct cultivators. Let them sing
songs, draw pictures, and make trinkets and gewgaws during the
time they are not working in the fields.

35

The author is referring to the so-called "prostitution tours" in
which Japanese men allegedly travel to Southeast Asian countries
to shop for many things, including women. (Translator's note)


CHAPTER VI
Disengagement from the City

The cities will perish of their own accord, [36] but we do not
know exactly when that will happen, and we must in the meantime
work for the contraction and decline of the cities. It is
therefore necessary for us to immediately begin building a
society in which it is possible to live without the cities. We
need resolve, mental preparedness, countermeasures, and a warmup.

Helping the City Perish so that We Can Make the Escape

To build our resolve and begin our warmup we must prepare for the
collapse of the city. Without a rehearsal our resolve is a mere
fantasy, and our warmup is nothing more than flailing our arms
about without throwing the ball.


How can we, during this time when the city still stands grandly
before us, bring about conditions under which it will perish?
There is only one way, and that is to disengage ourselves from
the city. Looking for a way to avoid the evils of the city while
at the same time receiving in full the blessings of urban
civilization is like trying to get milk from a bull. There is no
difference at all between this and the Zen priest who, while
attired in a resplendent brocaded robe, preaches to people on how
to rid themselves of earthly passions. "Disengagement" from the
city is the first of the preparations we must make in order to
get ready for its collapse, and it is also a means of shrinking
the city.


So disengagement from the city comes first -- but this is easier
said than done. Once one makes the attempt, one finds that there
are countless obstacles, and that virtually all of them are
difficult to overcome since they are not of our making (for
example, a lack of courage or resolve), but are obstacles put in
our path by the city.

The Structure of the City Does Not Readily Permit "Disengagement"

For example, the city (government) commands us to pay taxes.
"Since, as a citizen of the state and of your local government,
you receive their benefits, it is only natural that you be
required to help support them," it explains. And what happens if
one replies in the following manner? "You make it look that way,
but in actuality tax money is none other than the capital for the
nourishment of state power and for your compulsory, excessive
services. With your power and services, and with the farming
villages as your springboard, you maintain the urban social
structure, develop the urban economy, spur on urban prosperity,
and protect and nurture urban civilization and culture. I do not
need the blessings of the nation-state or of the local
government, and so I'm not going to pay taxes." And with that
they come to take it from you, a classic example of power in
action. Should you remove them by force, you are arrested and
thrown in prison.
* * *
The city also orders us to pay for education (textbooks, school
supplies, transportation, uniforms, etc.). "Education is
necessary," says the city, "so that you can live as a member of
modern society." Our reply is, "Though it first appears that way,
education in actuality only teaches people how to be idle and
gluttonous. It merely teaches people that which is used for
contamination, destruction, and waste. I do not want to pay money
for education that endangers the future of humanity." The city
comes back with, "Don't you realize how helpful education is in
the formation of human character?" "Are you telling me that one
of the gifts of education is the skillful concealment of
evildoing by those in positions of power? Wild animals receive no
education, yet we see not one criminal among them." At this the
city waves tradition, custom, and the constitution in front of
us, and finds a way to force education on us.
* * *
Shrines and temples (these are also the city) try forcing us to
contribute money. "That family over there gave some tens of
thousands of yen; the family next door donated several thousand.
Please give what you can..." It is only natural, they say, that
the believers (?) bear the costs of decorating the temples and
buying new robes for the priests. "You idle and gluttonous
bloodsuckers! The insolence of you to try and clothe yourself in
warm robes and fill your bellies, without tilling the soil, by
the mere glib chanting of some sort of incantation. I won't give
you a single red cent." And at this their eyes emit fire and they
reply with a threat: "You'll pay for this! May the gods (Buddha)
punish you immediately. In the near future you will be visited by
calamity, so get ready!" And then they continue to press for
donations through the back door by sending the shrine or temple
representative who is some influential citizen of the village.
* * *
The farmers' co-op comes to ask for help in raising more capital.
"The co-op is a cooperative union which exists for the sake of
the farmers. It is natural that the members must come up with the
capital to support the co-op's activities." "The coop as a union
for the farmers exists only in charter; in actuality it is
operated solely for its own benefit. Is this not the reason the
co-op, whether it be loans or sales, constantly exploits the
farmers? It is as if the co-op has switched from 'cooperative
union' to 'corporation.' I cannot give you money for capital
which will be used for corporate profits, or to exploit the
farmers." And the reply is, "So you have no need for loans or
farm machinery or fertilizer, do you? Well then, don't come
crying to the co-op when your crops are destroyed by blight or
weevils!"
* * *
The United States tells us to stimulate domestic demand in order
to redress the trade imbalance, and the politicians join the
chorus, promoting aggressive fiscal policies (throwing wads of
money in every direction), and insisting that we must vitalize
the economy. Of course the manufacturers are delighted, and put
pressure on us to Buy! Buy! However, we have reached the
saturation point, and cannot consume any more; we have no more
time or energy to expend on consumption (our drawers are full of
clothes, our houses are full of all manner of electrical
appliances, and our bellies are ready to burst; we have to play
golf, we have to travel, we have to play pachinko and mahjong, we
have to enjoy our stereos and video recorders, we have to read
newspapers and weekly magazines -- all 24 hours of the day will
not take care of it). We don't want anything else; don't come at
us with the need to stimulate domestic demand, we say, but they
counter by asking if we are traitors who intend to stand by and
watch as our country goes down. It's all right if your belly
bursts, so eat more bread! Use a car for only one year and then
trash it and buy another! Wear clothes only once and then throw
them away! Forget and leave your camera at the station! Throw
your watches in the ocean! And so the government and corporations
imperiously demand. Let us note incidentally that Japan became a
trading country precisely because there was no hope for an
increase in domestic demand. If there is a trade imbalance
because of excess exports, they ought to address the cause. In
fine, it would help much if they would stop overproduction. It
does not make any sense to compete with other manufacturers in
overproduction, and then try to shove the products down people's
throats. Could we hope that they won't try to solve this problem
by war?

The Only Possible, Sensible Way Is the Practice of "Independent
Farming"

We have seen, therefore, that it is virtually impossible to
disengage oneself from the city completely since the city clings
to us tenaciously. It is said that when Saigyo [37] was ready to
leave on his sea voyage he kicked his own child away from the
boat -- that is, he shook off earthly passions -- and departed
resolutely. However, the city will not bow out so readily; with
the strongest manacles (and, when the need arises, with police,
courts, and the military) it tries to prevent our leaving. This
cannot be helped. If we cannot then completely rid ourselves of
the city's entanglements, then we must allow only the least
possible involvement with the city, and shake off the major
restraints it imposes on us. Let us do as the lizard does when it
flees, leaving only the tip of its tail. There is no other way to
flee from something that clings to us like our very shadow.


To be specific, the only way to accomplish this is to practice
"independent farming." Unless we do this, there is no way at all
to escape the city. For example, let us say one quits a white
collar job and takes up painting in order to support oneself.
This will not do, for unless one is recognized by the city for
one's art and is compensated for it -- that is, joins the plunder
activities of the city -- then there is no way to make a living.
Indeed, such activity is the city itself.


Independent farming, as I mentioned in the previous chapter, is
natural cycle farming, which depends upon nothing but Nature;
animal and human wastes are returned to the soil, and the produce
of the land then feeds the animals and human beings. As long as
one continues this type of farming, there is no room for the city
-- government, co-ops, manufacturers, corporations, and consumers
-- to butt in. One is self-sufficient and independent, and there
is no fear of failure whatever may come.

Reducing One's Contact with the City to the Least Possible Extent

These are the basics of readying oneself for the demise of the
city. If one does just this much, then it does not matter when
the city perishes. However, during the transition period, one
cannot escape the entanglements of the city, so while receiving
in the smallest measure the blessings of the city (that is, while
supplying the city with only the smallest amount), we ready
ourselves for the impending demise of the city, decide how to
deal with it, train ourselves for it, and continue to deepen our
relationship only with Nature. And this is also the best way to
bring about the contraction of the city.


Let us now, in light of the foregoing examples, see how one can,
while beginning the practice of independent agriculture, lessen
one's ties with the city to the maximum possible extent.
* * *
The more money one makes, the more they take in taxes. If one has
only enough income to barely get along, then under the present
tax system it is not necessary to pay very much. However, it
seems that one is still bound to pay local and prefectural taxes.
* * *
Compulsory education as required by the constitution cannot be
helped, but we should think carefully about anything more than
that. The universities, in particular, are none other than
training facilities for the Contamination and Destruction Reserve
Corps, [38] so we must regard them as the enemy and stay away.
The only education necessary to independent farmers is the
farming methods peculiar to their family and region as passed on
to them by their parents, grandparents, and village elders. The
study of anything more than that is the sham egotism of the urban
economic society, the urban competitive society, the urban
cultural society, or the urban glory society.


If the co-op threatens us with no more loans, no more
fertilizer, and no more agricultural chemicals, this is actually
something to be thankful for, since to natural-cycle,
self-sufficient agriculture such things are needless and harmful.
Since the co-op cannot force us to do things as the government
can, it is all right to refuse their every request without
worrying about being arrested and thrown in jail.
* * *
Since religion is a narcotic used as a means of plunder, one must
resolve never to fall for any of their tricks. The only thing we
need consider important are the laws of Nature. Though it was
never possible for the gods and Buddha to be Good, they make them
look like a bundle of Good, and, using this to their own
advantage (that is, for plundering), they make judgments
concerning Good and Evil; it is this deceptiveness of the
established religions which we must pass judgment on. The
judgments of the gods and Buddha must be those of Nature. Truth,
equality, cold impartiality -- the Net of Heaven lets no
rebellion against Nature go unpunished. If the religions use the
magisterial authority of the gods and Buddha to extort, establish
themselves in idleness and gluttony, bring about the
contamination of their food by joining the city in exploiting the
farmers, and take part in the city's plundering, prodigality, and
destruction, then Nature (the gods) will surely make them pay.


Even if one says, "Stick it up your nose!" to the gods, one will
not be punished, but no matter how much one prostrates oneself
before the gods, if, at the same time, one contaminates the Land
and food by spreading agricultural chemicals on them, the gods
(Nature) will surely visit one with cruel punishment.
* * *
Independent farmers must be mentally prepared for a life of
austerity. So it should not be worth getting excited if, quite
suddenly, things like televisions, cars, cameras, computers,
videotape machines, pianos, refrigerators, and washing machines
disappear from our lives. Having them is convenient, but even if
we do not have them, there should be no problem. In fact, such
things only bring about sloth, obesity, and surfeit, not to
mention the pollution engendered by their production and use. It
is stupid to shackle ourselves to the city for such things.


Just because we cannot go see a play or take a trip does not
mean that harm will befall us, so there should be nothing to
worry about. Living without such things does not even require the
aforementioned warmup; as long as we have our minds made up to
live without them it does not matter even if they disappear
tomorrow. Though it may be all right if we make occasional use of
needless things during the period of transition, we must not run
after them crying when the time comes to bid a final farewell. No
matter how often the government and big business enjoin us to
consume more in order to improve the economy, we should calmly
ignore them. We must not forget that the best action we can take
to bring about the contraction of the cities is to live a life of
austerity, and to stop giving them so much food.

What Do We Need Most in Order to Guarantee Our Survival?

In order to keep themselves alive, what do wild [39] animals
want, search for, and find value in? They desire no government,
they desire no agricultural cooperatives, they desire no
education or learning, paintings, travel, glory, or praise and
recognition (no medals and awards). They desire food (finding
food sums up their existence) and a simple place to sleep. And a
little sex once or twice a year...


With only those things wild animals find everything they need to
live out their lives. To them, all other things (like education,
government, religion, the Tee Vee, automobiles, travel, and
medals -- that is, the city) have not the slightest value
whatsoever. Even automobiles worth millions of yen, and
paintings worth billions of yen are not worth a pig's tail to
them. It is only human beings who madly seek things which are, to
the sustenance of life, utterly worthless, thereby bringing upon
themselves incalculable harm, and hurrying down the road to ruin.

Human Beings must Learn from Wild Animals

It should be quite evident, then, what is most necessary for
survival. The sun, air, water, the land -- these are by far and
without a doubt the most precious things to us. Yet, even if we
do not seek them, Nature will give us unlimited amounts free. Or
perhaps one should say that it is always there in the form of
"Nature itself"; as long as we do not contaminate it, destroy it,
or cover it with concrete, it will always be there for us. Just
as with wild animals, if human beings have food, a modest
dwelling, and clothing, it is possible to survive,
self-sufficient and independent. Most other things are add-ons,
playthings, luxuries, trouble, disaster (like recessions), and
poisons (like cigarettes and food additives).


Therefore, indispensable to us now is preparation -- a warmup --
this in order to get the things we really need. As for all other
things, especially those which are to Nature worthless and
harmful -- convenience, extravagance, ease, glory, praise, and
all other urban paraphernalia -- it would be best to shut them
out of our lives from the start.


One does not need gorgeous clothing. The desire for beautiful
clothing is the desire for a means to conceal one's own
shortcomings. Clothes make the man, as they say; trying to
increase one's own value by dressing in fine clothes is a way of
advertising one's own worthlessness. A uniform is a means of
boasting of the city's power; military uniforms, medals,
parliamentary ID tags, and priests' splendorous robes are all
means of domination devised to make people bow down before them.
And decorating armor and helmets, which are supposedly meant to
ward off arrows and swords, was the creation of display
calculated to impress, not only one's enemies, but also allies
and common people with one's majesty.


If the stable boy gets nice clothes, then why not a military
uniform on a fox, and a fancy kimono on a badger? But whether or
not their status rises as a result is another matter. First of
all, they hate wearing such troublesome things, and will show
considerable resistance if someone tries to put them on; you may
not be able to get them on the animal at all. It is because they
are natural. And it is here that we find the difference between
the city, which is built upon human law, and wildness, which
finds its foundation in the law of Nature.


The purpose of clothing is to ward off the cold and to keep from
getting wet in the rain. If need be, we should be prepared to cut
a hole in a gunny sack for our head and wear that. And we should
wear light clothing, because it is best for our health to expose
our skin to the outside air. Let us begin preparing ourselves
right now.

Preparation for our Escape from the City

Concerning living quarters: Putting up grand buildings, equipping
them with all sorts of conveniences, and decorating them lavishly
is, just as with clothing, done to boast of one's own greatness,
and in order to satisfy one's desire for convenience,
extravagance, and ease. And most important, in order to build
such structures, precious resources are used unsparingly, great
destruction and contamination are wrought by the mining,
transport, and processing of the said resources, and great
amounts of pollution are generated by the use of such homes or
workplaces. What is more, this increase in the number of
buildings causes the further decrease in the area of the country,
and the cities continue their expansion.


There is no limit to the desire for an anti-Nature, modern urban
lifestyle. Small or old houses are continually being torn down
(the remains are discarded in the country or in the ocean), and
big, new buildings are put up. They call this the development of
the cities, but just as I have demonstrated, this development is
actually what is threatening the continuing existence of the
cities.


It was some foreigner who made fun of Japanese houses by calling
them "rabbit hutches," and a certain idiotic Japanese critic then
used the same expression as an instrument of self-deprecation.
However, Kamo no Chomei [40] demonstrated that a ten-foot square
hut was quite big enough as a place to live. If the population
continues to increase at the present rate, without war,
epidemics, or famine, in 700 years we will reach a population
density at which there will be one person per square foot,
including the mountains. It seems to me that it would be much
more important to put up with living in rabbit hutches and
saving our farmland.


Living in cramped, stuffy apartment buildings and falling on
your face every time there is an earthquake is naturally the
price one should pay for living in the city in order to realize a
life of ease. If you do not like it, then leave the city and go
to live in the country. Build a log cabin in the country and live
there. Even if it is destroyed by a typhoon or an earthquake, you
can repair it the very next day. What is more, you can repair it
by yourself, without the help of anyone else.


It would do us well to prepare ourselves by learning how to
build the sunken dwellings of ancient times. We should ready
ourselves by recognizing that it is best for human beings to live
on a dirt floor.

Is It Possible to Produce Food without the City?

Concerning food: The intervention (interference) of the city
(that is, the secondary and tertiary industries) in the
production of food is considerable, and for this reason it has
become possible to produce great quantities of high-yield crops
with reduced labor. If the city's participation were to disappear
it would mean the instant disintegration of this production
system, and agriculture would be dealt a severe blow. At least
this is the way the city boasts of its superior position, and
causes the country to bow before it, cutting a magnificent
figure.


But we should not worry too much about this. The kind of
agricultural system that would become unable to function without
the city is actually none other than a suck-up-to-the-city
agriculture that is locked into the city's plunder system.
However, to natural cycle, small-scale, self-sufficient
agriculture, the city's meddling is actually a nuisance; as long
as we have the blessings of Nature there is not the slightest
difficulty. The object of the city's interference is to continue
plundering the country.


There is here perhaps one thing we should be aware of, and that
is the necessity of certain tools -- not tilling and threshing
machines, but such things as sickles and hoes. Without the help
of the city it might be difficult to find such things unless we
revive the part-time blacksmiths of the Edo Period or earlier. In
former times the part-time farmers who made water conduits,
baskets, and sifters lived in every village. When they were not
working in the fields they made and repaired farm implements and
household goods. But since their main occupation was farming,
they had little time to make such things, and thus did not become
real merchants. They do not make things to sell, but when they
were asked (modern industries that produce too much can learn
something here). And there should be no need for large-scale iron
works if they get the raw materials from iron sand as the
swordsmiths did.

Abandon Anti-Nature Urban Dietary Habits

The city haughtily tells us that we must have, if not
refrigerators, electric rice cookers, propane gas, blenders,
artificial flavoring, and sugar, then at least essential items
like pots and bowls and salt, and that without such urban
blessings we would not be able to go on living. But let us not
get excited.


If there be a need, we should be ready to do without even pots
and bowls and salt. And if at the same time we make up our minds
to do without such things, and begin the preparations for a new
dietary life, we begin to see to what extent urban dietary life
is anti-Nature, and how it is leading us down the road to
self-destruction.


Wild animals all eat what is natural for them to eat. Squirrels
eat nuts, cats eat mice. Should we ignore this simple fact,
feeding mice to squirrels and chestnuts to cats, neither will be
able to go on living. This is the great iron hammer of Heaven
that falls on those who ignore these laws.


What an animal naturally eats is decided by instinct, and
instinct here is preference, and the ability to obtain what it
needs. A cat is not able to eat chestnuts, nor does it care at
all for the taste or flavor of chestnuts; a squirrel, on the
other hand, has the claws and teeth with which to open and eat
chestnuts, and it finds them quite delicious as well.


But how about human beings? Extremely clever and arrogant as
they are, human beings ignored the laws that governed what they
should eat. Learning how to use utensils, fire, and various
seasonings, they were able to eat things which, originally, they
could not eat, or should not eat.


The things human beings desire and can obtain and eat without
the use of tools or fire are, for example, nuts and fruit,
plants, seeds, potatoes, small fish, and eggs (if you give a
monkey an egg it will skillfully break the shell and suck out the
contents -- monkeys and human beings naturally eat the same
things). So it is that, no matter how much of a brave and strong
Tarzan one is, it is probably quite impossible to catch and
butcher bovine animals and whales with one's bare hands.

The Human Diet: Crime and Punishment

By the use of utensils, fire, and seasonings human beings changed
their natural diets, thereby increasing almost limitlessly the
things they can eat, and by transforming themselves into hunting,
eating animals, have increased their numbers dramatically. On the
other hand, however, they weakened themselves physically. Not
only that, they also process their natural foods with heat and
seasonings, thus killing the life within their food, destroying
the cells, and substantially decreasing the beneficial effects of
the food. Thus if we do not stuff our bodies full we cannot get
enough nutrition, and this has brought about the transformation
of the human being into the greatest eating animal on Earth.


Note first of all that human beings suffer serious tooth decay,
something we don't see much in wild animals. We catch colds all
the time. We are troubled by chronic digestive disorders (only
humans use bathroom tissue; if an animal is healthy its excrement
will not stick to its body). We perspire profusely (since
perspiration is a means of getting rid of wastes, sweating a lot
is proof that one's body is full of sewage; no matter how hot it
is, one should perspire only moderately). And in recent years we
have come to live in fear of chronic illness brought on by the
compound effects of many chemical substances that are foreign to
our bodies.


Though the net of Heaven is course, it has not overlooked the
human rebellion against our natural diet. The fact that human
beings have barely managed to survive in spite of this is due to
the fact that we have continued, as we should, to consume some
fruit and vegetables raw. Raw vegetables with meat, pickled
vegetables with white rice, and fruit for dessert.

Our Modern Diet has Brought about Sickness and the Weakening of
Our Bodies

Utensils and fire and seasoning -- the great transformation in
the natural diet of human beings, and the great rebellion against
Nature. This is known as cooking or cuisine. And in cooking we
find the following three regrettable elements:

1.

How can one, using utensils and heat and seasonings, make it
possible to eat things which one cannot ordinarily eat?

2.

How can one make things taste good, and stuff a lot into one's
stomach?

3.

How can one destroy the life and cells of one's food, thereby
diminishing its effect?
What we must be aware of here is that even the provincial cooking
of a hundred years ago varies not a bit from these themes, and
even if we look back 50 or 100 thousand years, there is little
difference. They say that our remaining canine teeth prove that
primitive human beings were carnivorous animals, but I do not
believe it. Almost a million and a half years ago human beings
had already learned how to use fire, thereby changing their
natural diets. Canine teeth were no doubt used to open and eat
chestnuts and other hard nuts.


Human beings are born with both fists tightly clenched. If you
put a stick in a baby's hands it will hang from the stick, and if
you lift the stick, the upper half of the baby's body will
follow. If you provide some stimulus to the soles of its feet,
the baby's toes will bend as if they are trying to grasp
something. This indicates that, even now, the structure of the
human body is adapted to climbing trees in search of fruit and
nuts, and it has changed little from millions of years ago. This
also shows that there ought to be no change in the human diet,
either. It was, after all, quite impossible for human beings to
become lions or hyenas.


In addition to (or in connection with) the three elements of
cooking described above, human beings have committed further
crimes: They have changed the shape and appearance of their food,
pulverized it, analyzed it, extracted it, mixed it, and
compounded it.


Wild animals eat what is natural for them to eat, and they eat it
in its original form, thereby obeying this iron-clad law of
Nature. Thus they maintain their health without a single doctor,
a single pill, or a single hospital. It is only human beings that
make brown rice into white rice; remove the hull of wheat and
grind it into white powder; remove the head and bones of fish,
leaving only the soft flesh; separate the fats from milk and make
it into butter; or extract vitamins and make them into pills.
Because of this it is only human beings that suffer from
corpulence, undue loss of weight, sickness, and early aging and
death. Seeing that they were in trouble, people then founded the
nutritional sciences, and began calculating everything -- consume
a certain percent of this, so many grams of this, or so many
milliliters of that. But it turns out to be half-baked, for we
can see that the results of those school lunches, which are
models of nutritional science, are fat and sickly children. Just
compare these children with wild animals, which do not study the
nutritional sciences, but manage to keep themselves fit and trim.

Let Us Begin Training Ourselves to Eat Things Raw

We ought to begin training ourselves to eat things raw and in
their original form, and we should eat things that we can obtain
with our bare hands. Even if it is only a handful a day, we
should try eating brown rice, wheat, and corn (not to mention
fruit and vegetables) raw and unprocessed. We should not
underestimate the positive effect of even this little bit. Eating
even one grain raw will do us that much good. The net of Heaven
is coarse but lets nothing escape -- those who make light of one
grain of brown rice will find themselves bound by the erroneous
idea of "permissible levels." There is no gainsaying that, for
every one milligram of food additives one consumes, the liver
suffers correspondingly. The law of permissible levels, which is
convenient for the manufacturers of such additives, is not to be
found in Nature.


One must chew a hundred times and secrete three cupfuls of
saliva in order to eat a handful of uncooked brown rice. It is
impossible to eat it otherwise. Is the reader aware that the hull
portion of cooked brown rice passes through the gut and is found
in great quantity in one's excrement? This is the result of
cooking the rice in order to make it easier to eat, but if one
eats it uncooked the hull too is well chewed. In saliva there is
a hormone called parotin which helps order the body's functions.
What is more, chewing something hard strengthens the teeth, and
also stimulates the working of the brain.


In addition, the real flavor of something is revived by eating it
raw. For instance, if one eats and compares raw corn and cake,
one is well aware of how the cake is a tasteless lump of dead
matter, and how the raw corn is most delicious, and overflowing
with life force. Just try offering a lion raw and cooked meat, or
a chicken wheat and crackers, and see for yourself which one they
will choose.


For those people whose sense of taste has been artificially
deadened and who claim that they cannot eat raw food because it
tastes terrible, I offer the following advice: Go a day without
eating and then try it. And those who have bad teeth and cannot
eat raw grain can grind it into powder with a stone mortar and
knead it with water.

Health Recovery and Food Conservation: Eat it Raw

If you eat cooked brown rice instead of cooked white rice, you
will need only two-thirds as much, and if you eat the brown rice
uncooked, you will find you can eat only one-third as much. By
making white rice one discards the best part, and by cooking it
one kills the cells and the life within; thus, in order to take
in sufficient nutrients, one must stuff great amounts into one's
stomach. By eating it uncooked, one needs only one-third as much.
If you cook your greens you can eat a lot, but uncooked you can
only eat about one-third as much.


And this leads us to a great discovery -- that eating things raw
and uncooked contributes substantially to food conservation. A
special program on NHK noted that, in the event that food
imports were totally halted, even if we made all our golf courses
and superhighways into bean and potato fields, still 35 million
people would starve to death. But if we ate all our food raw, all
those people would be saved. In addition, by eating things raw
there would be no leftovers. It is said that in Japan cooked and
killed leftovers that are discarded amount to 10 millions tons a
year, but if we eat, for example, brown rice and corn uncooked,
then there will never be any leftovers.


And even if we converted all our rice paddies to organic
production, causing the yield to drop to one-third, there would
be no shortage of rice even under present conditions if everyone
ate uncooked brown rice.

It Is the City that Needs the Country

So we have seen that, just as I wrote earlier, eating things in
their original form, as well as unprocessed and raw, can
contribute to the recovery of health. In addition, it will also
help conserve food. We will not be troubled in the least when the
food imports stop, or when the hospitals and drug companies fold.
What is more, there is yet a third great service done by eating
things raw and in their original form: It is possible to become
totally independent of the city. When we become independent the
city will be in a pickle, but we shall not suffer.


As long as we have hands and feet and a mouth, it is possible
for us, just as it is for wild animals, to nourish ourselves
without bowls, chopsticks, pots and pans, propane gas, knives,
chopping boards, oil, soy sauce, sugar, or even salt.


Wild animals do not take in an especially large amount of salt,
and yet I have never heard of wild animals damaging their health
because of this. It is only human beings who take in abnormally
large quantities, thereby suffering from arteriosclerosis and
high blood pressure. It is said that human beings only require
0.1 grams of salt per day. But Japanese on the average take in 20
grams per day, and even those people who are on reduced salt
diets ingest 10 grams a day, so this means that we are taking in
between 100 and 200 times the needed amount. One-tenth of one
gram is an amount naturally found in food, and that should be
enough; human beings should not be any different from wild
animals. The salt refining factories and the salt retailers can
go belly up any time they like. It is idiotic to believe that
people must ingest the same proportion of salt as is contained in
the blood. One should consider that 0.1 gram of salt has
accumulated in the blood.


If you suddenly reduce the amount of salt you ingest you will
experience a kind of "cold turkey" in which you feel tired, but
this is just because the body is used to a lot of salt. If you
put up for just one week, it will pass. One should require no
warmup even in order to reduce one's salt intake to 1/100th of
the usual.


We have therefore seen the city's last bastion of control --
salt -- crumble before our very eyes. We do not need the city at
all in order to live. It is the city that needs the country in
order to continue its existence.

Chapter VI Notes

36

The cause of the city's demise will be, for example, a lack of
resources, the insufficiency of food, or the contamination of
the environment. However, this all depends much upon the changes
surrounding the city, so perhaps one should say that the city
will perish from "without." Still, the entity responsible for
engendering this cause from without is none other than the city
(it is the city which squanders resources, brings ruin upon the
farming villages, and contaminates the environment), so I think
it is correct to say that the city will perish "automatically."

37

Buddhist monk and poet (1118-1190). (Translator's note)

38

It goes without saying that some disciplines, like technical
chemistry, civil engineering, mechanical engineering, and nuclear
physics are directly linked to the destruction and contamination
of the environment, but those leisurely disciplines that seem to
do no harm, like the fine arts, archeology, and anthropology, are
indirectly responsible for harming the Earth since their
practitioners refuse to sweat or dirty their own hands, and
continue to pat their fat bellies, which are full of the labors
of the few remaining farmers, thus forcing the farmers into labor
saving, high-yield, contaminating, plundering farming methods.

39

The characters for "wild" are here read as those for "natural."
The author therefore equates "wild" with "natural."
(Translator's note)

40

Poet and writer (1155-1216). Nakashima refers in particular to a
work called Hojoki, written when Kamo no Chomei lived in a small
hut.


CHAPTER VII
The Disintegration of the City

Even if we do absolutely nothing, and let things continue on as
they are, the city will automatically perish. Even if I should
swing at the ground with a maul and miss, the demise of the city
will surely come to pass.

Indulging in Ease, the City Destroys the Future

In a corner of northern Africa, out on the desolate sands, there
was a small stand of trees, barely keeping itself alive. In the
top of a tree was a boy lopping off branches with a hatchet, and
below there were a few goats greedily eating the leaves. This was
a scene of Africa's final hour as shown on television. [41]


Around the trees, as far as one could see, there was only barren
land; after the goats consumed the leaves on these trees, there
would be nothing. The goats were facing starvation, and the boy,
who lived on the goats' milk, would be visited by the same fate.


"Does this boy know," said the voice of the television, "that he
is cutting his own throat? Even if he does, this is the only way
to live until tomorrow."


You, in the cities! Can you view this merely as the misfortune of
others? The fate of this boy is the fate of the city.


You too are cutting limbs off trees every day. In order to live
through the day (or, more precisely, in order to continue
enjoying convenience, extravagance, and ease, to continue the
pursuit of profit, to seek glory and praise, and to continue your
stupid competition) you keep on lopping off branches. It does not
matter to you if this is the march of death; you continue to
waste the few remaining resources, to destroy and contaminate our
irreplaceable natural environment, to reduce the amount of
farmland, which is your lifeline. How much longer do you think
you can live while sacrificing your own future?

Petroleum: the City's Support;
Petroleum: the City's Demise

Even if the prediction that petroleum will run out in another 30
years is wrong, this does not mean that there is an unlimited
amount. It is an undeniable fact that, for every drop of
petroleum used, the reserves will be reduced by that same amount.


And it is not just petroleum, for the same rule holds true for
iron, copper, aluminum, and uranium, and it is no different for
the so-called new materials. As long as there is no proof that
these new materials are made from a vacuum, and that their
process of manufacture requires no energy, there is no denying
that any new material invented is subject to the same fate.


Let us note also that since these buried resources are used in
close conjunction with one another, the city will be threatened
by a lack of even one of them. For example, should there be a
shortage of manganese, steelmaking will suffer. If we run short
of copper, there will be no more motors that use copper wire in
their coils, and whole industrial sector will be paralyzed. Here
they cannot say that "even if we run out of copper, we can use
tin or nickel."


Petroleum is the same in that there is no replacement. We hear
that nuclear power will act in its place, but then nuclear power
cannot be used as the raw material for manufactured articles, and
even in the field of energy it is said that, if we do not have an
amount of petroleum which corresponds to one-fourth the energy
gained from nuclear power, it is impossible to operate the
nuclear power plants.

Nature's Retaliation Is Assured

So we have seen that when the petroleum runs out (whether it be
30 or 50 years in the future, it does not matter) the modern city
will perish, but there is one other noteworthy matter here, and
that is, before the oil wells run dry, the city must perish twice
for the sake of petroleum.


One reason is that, because of the poisons released by
petroleum, the city will become uninhabitable. We have already
seen that, when one traces them back to the source, the physical
cause of all forms of pollution is petroleum. No matter to what
extent the city was made to flush untreated wastes into the
rivers and oceans, no matter how impudent the urbanites are, and
no matter how much the people at the Environment Agency shirk
their duties, if petroleum suddenly disappeared from before our
very eyes, it is sure that 80 percent of our present pollution
(including chemicals, food additives, and agricultural chemicals)
would disappear along with it. Will the city perish because of
petroleum's poisons, or because of its disappearance?


It is almost as if petroleum was discovered for the purpose of
eradicating the cities. Verily, the sum total of the petroleum
poisons in the whole world is exactly that needed to get rid of
the cities. Nature is making an example of the cities for us. No
matter what reason there could be, the arrogant and extravagant
city cannot be expected to give up petroleum until it has
consumed the last drop, so noting what the future will bring,
Nature promised the Earth that the cities would perish. The city
must pay a price commensurate with the convenience and
extravagance (in reality, the destruction and contamination) it
has thus far enjoyed, and that price is the demise of the city.
This is the great Iron Hammer of Nature (Nature's retaliation).

The Petroleum Grabfest Will End in Total Nuclear War

The second way in which the city will perish for the sake of
petroleum is the total nuclear war brought on by the frantic
scramble for petroleum. The city will have no choice. The
urbanites are steeped in the prosperity of the city --
convenience, extravagance, ease, the Pursuit of Profit,
production competition, glory, and praise, all gained by means of
squandering petroleum -- and there is no mistaking that, when
they begin to have that terrible feeling that the oil is about to
run out, they will go mad and try to rob it from others. [42]
Should the city just try to be gentlemanly about the matter, it
will be totally paralyzed, so no matter what stands in the way,
the city will without reserve begin the fight for petroleum.
Nuclear war will begin in this way, and most of the cities in the
world -- including the urbanized country -- will be destroyed. It
will be the end of humanity except for those in the back country
of New Guinea or the Amazon.


When this time comes it will be too late for warnings,
countermeasures, or practice of any kind. We must realize that
our time for extinction has come, and calmly reap as we have
sown. [43]

The Inevitable Fate of the City:
Development = Doom

"Digging one's own grave" -- Here is the expression which has
described the city since it first appeared on Earth. In Chapter
IV, I noted that the city itself is the explosive that came into
being in order to get rid of the city, and verily, the city has,
by means of choosing the course of growth and development, rushed
down the road to oblivion since the time it first appeared. There
has never been an instance of the city lessening, even for a day,
its efforts to destroy itself, or resting in its labors to dig
its own grave. The reason for establishing the city is to achieve
ease and gluttony, and the attainment of this objective
necessitates plunder, destruction, and contamination; this is
none other than the rush down the road to ruin. There is no other
possible course for the city to follow. Should one hope for
another course for the city to follow, it would have to be the
complete negation of the city's reason for being, and the
cessation of ease and gluttony (plunder, destruction, and
contamination, i.e., the functions of the city). One must always
keep in mind that, should one, with one's mind set on ease and
gluttony, establish the city and allow it to continue its
activities, ruin is its inevitable fate.


Therefore, since ruin is the city's mission, it is only natural
that the city's all-pervading image is that of a person digging
his own grave. And then, in order that the city can execute its
mission with even greater effectiveness, it continues adding on,
stacking up, coupling, compounding, and amplifying, in that way
helping to hasten its own demise. Recently the New City Image has
made its appearance.

The Self-Destructive Apparatus of Civilization Cannot Be Stopped

A robot manufacturing company introduced robots into its own
robot factory. This is because it was impossible for the company
to compete in the marketplace unless it made an example of its
own factory. No longer able to continue operations, it went belly
up. In this way the manager of the robot factory was forced to
risk his life in the establishment of a roboticized robot
factory. Upon completion of the factory, the manager and 600
employees all lost their jobs. It was for that reason (and also
to become a model for the industry) that they did it. In order to
remain on the cutting edge of technology and stay out in front of
the competition it was necessary to build a factory that would
allow the presence of not a single human being.


"Right now we are working like bees in order to build an
apparatus that will cut our own throats," said one of the
employees in a television interview. "This will eventually take
place in all factories. It can't be helped -- if we don't do it,
the company will fold. Lately I've been giving serious thought to
becoming a hired hand on a dairy farm in Hokkaido after I lose
this job."


But not all 600 could find jobs herding cattle, and not all of
them could do the job even if they were asked. An economy based
on money generates legions of idle people hungry for money, and
they come up with all sorts of schemes to make a living, such as
the investment magazines, and the recent Toyota Trading Company
scandal. [44]


Nowadays robots can do just about anything, and we rejoice over
how convenient and quick everything has become, and over
civilization's progress, but we had better look again, because
civilization is robbing us of our jobs. Whether in developed or
developing countries, civilization is the enemy of human
survival.


I have described one of the new conditions under which the city
will self-destruct (or become uninhabited). The city, which once
achieved prosperity by means of civilization, will soon perish by
means of civilization. How could this possibly be stopped?

The Contradictions and Tyranny of the City Render Recycling
Impossible

I have noted many times that by means of destroying the forests
and transforming the land into desert the city is not only
bringing about crises for the developing countries, but is also
threatening its own existence. Knowing just this is enough to
tell us that the city has not long to live. It should be evident
to anyone that the city is responsible for the fearsomely rapid
spread of the deserts in the developing countries, the increase
in barren land, the decrease in the amount of oxygen, the
increase in the amount of carbon dioxide, and, more than anything
else, the shortage of pulp.


The future of the city depends in a large measure upon its
all-important paper -- wrapping paper, cardboard boxes, bathroom
tissue, newspapers, magazines, and computer printing paper. So
the city is saddled with the contradiction that it cannot stop
its profligacy. The regions which produce the wood for this paper
are turning into deserts minute by minute.


The other day an employee of a factory that makes chips from
imported wood came to see my chickens. "Every day my factory
converts an awesome amount of imported wood into chips," he said,
"and it is all used to produce the wrapping paper used in
department stores. For stupid vanity and convenience we are
plunging the developing countries into crisis, and cutting our
own throats at the same time. I can no longer bear the futility,
or being party to the great crime of doing such work. I want to
become a self-sufficient farmer, and so came to see your
chickens."
* * *
I also noted earlier that the city continues its limitless
expansion on a global scale, and that, inversely proportional to
this, farmland is limitlessly plundered. This too shows us that
the city is not long for this world. The contradictions and
tyranny of the urbanites, who seek to continue their gluttony
even as they steal the farmland that produces their food, are
beyond the comprehension of the ordinary person.


A short time ago I happened to visit a public facility in Fukui,
and spoke to one of the personnel. "This area used to be prime
rice paddies," he explained. "But as you can see, it is now a
fine public meeting hall and a big parking lot. In this way we
continue to lose farmland. When I think of what will eventually
happen, shivers run down my spine."


In the neighborhood of my daughter's farm they are talking about
making a golf course. If they go through with the plan, the
developers will purchase the fields and wooded areas around my
daughter's farm and make it all into a golf course. I asked if
anyone was opposing this plan and was told that not one person in
the village was against it. If anyone were to oppose the plan
they would be ostracized from the village since, once the golf
course is completed, not only will the fields and woods be
transformed into piles of money, but there will be a rest
facility, a restaurant, and jobs. In this way little effort is
required of the city in order to steal more farmland and urbanize
it. And what is really surprising is that I have not yet heard of
any plan to convert the city into farmland.

Biotechnology: Violating the Province of Nature

The city is replete with evidence of self-destruction, and it
projects many images of people digging their own graves, so one
could not possibly write about all of them. But I would like to
add a final word about biotechnology.


The work of evolving and fostering the species is the province of
Nature, and has taken billions of years. Whether it be a single
grass seed or a single tree leaf, nothing came into being
overnight; each thing is the product of the complex and wondrous
interaction of species that have repeated adaptation and
selection over an incomprehensibly long time. If, in this net of
interaction among species, even one of the nodes should exhibit
unusual development or disappear, the balance of the ecosystem is
disturbed; species that cannot stand the strain will perish, and
the ecosystem then reorganizes itself to seek a new point of
balance. This is what I mean by natural selection (the
dispensation of Nature).


But now we see those cleverly conceited, high-handed, and
arrogant human beings invading the province of Nature, and trying
their hand at biotechnology; in a short period of time they are
attempting to change that which Nature has taken billions of
years to make, or to create something new. The species adapt to
their environments (air, water, sunlight, the Land, and the net
of interactions among species) and survive by maintaining their
balance through mutual assistance, but in order to do this it
requires the total history of its own evolution since the time it
appeared.


If human beings now carry through with their desire to make
sudden changes in the species, there is a danger that the balance
of the ecosystem will require a great upheaval (the iron hammer
of Nature) in order to correct the distortion brought about by
human violence and seek the next level of balance. This is
Nature's retaliation.


Nature's retaliation will first of all attack human beings
directly (in correcting the imbalance brought about by
biotechnology, there is no better way than striking down its
inventor, human beings).


If we continue eating strange new creations which are not of the
earth and which violate the natural diet of human beings (for
example, soybean protein cultured in tanks with colonic bacteria,
or isomerized sugars and oligosaccharides made from transformed
biomass) cell regeneration will be adversely affected, and
assimilation will be disturbed. By changing our diets and
ingesting synthetic chemical compounds we will increase the
incidence of cancer and liver disorders.


Because the purveyors of news will perish as well, they will not
give us the news that "humanity perished after eating artificial
food." By producing our own food and by assimilating the
blessings of Nature in our own locale, we can at least preserve
the unurbanized portion of the land. The city will take a lot
with it when it goes.

Chapter VII Notes

41

The reason Africa is turning into a wasteland is not because of
drought, but because of the city's meddling. It was the
deception of the city that made the native peoples of Africa, who
formerly, though poor, managed to provide themselves with all
their own food, believe they must escape poverty, keep domestic
animals, destroy their verdure, and ultimately dig their own
graves. (Rain clouds do not arise in regions with no trees.
Droughts are man-made, and they further make it difficult to
reestablish trees. In this way deserts form, and the land dies
for good.)

42

It appears that the United States, in order to prepare for the
future shortage of petroleum, is now embarking upon a policy of
closing its own oil fields and depending solely upon imports.
When the world's petroleum starts to run out and other countries
begin to panic, the U.S. will quietly tap its own carefully
stocked reserves, and, ignoring the panic of other countries,
work for its own prosperity and world hegemony.


But it remains to be seen if things go as they plan. If the U.S.
tries to keep all the oil to itself it will have to fight with
other countries, whether they be enemies or allies, and it will
no doubt come under concentrated nuclear attack.

43

Gensuikin [The Japanese Congress against A and H Bombs] is
expecting too much if they believe that world peace will come
about with the disappearance of nuclear weapons. If you want to
get rid of a skin eruption you must see to the health of your
entire body; it does no good just to remove the eruption. Should
you get rid of nuclear weapons but leave the city -- totally
dependent upon petroleum and other buried resources -- just as it
is, new eruptions will continue without end. Even if there are no
nuclear weapons, new machines of mass killing will appear without
end. In time the oil will begin to run out, and the city will
sense that it is about to perish; at this point the Great
Petroleum Grabfest will inevitably begin, and it will not matter
whether or not there are nuclear weapons. After all, the city
will be desperate. The city will no doubt use chemical weapons.
It will spread deadly bacteria all over the place. It will use
neutron bombs and death rays as well. The city will make use of
the latest high technology, and all manner of new weapons which
have been secretly developed will have their first battlefield
tests here.


Once this war begins there will be none of those half-hearted
attempts at talking peace. If, because of a reconciliation many
human beings remain, the problem of who gets the oil will still
remain, and everyone will feel as if they have not attained the
object of their war, which is the maintenance of the prosperity
of the indolent classes. In this war it is impermissible to allow
the continued existence of those who do not belong to the
indolent classes.


Prisoners of war and slaves are nothing but an impediment. As
long as one has oil (and mineral resources) machinery will act as
one's slaves and servants. That is why the urban indolent classes
will start the petroleum war.


By "indolent classes" I mean those people who claim that they
"cannot live" without elevators, air conditioners, refrigerators,
jets, trains, cars, telephones, computers, robots, vacuum
cleaners, washing machines, propane gas, instant noodles, bread,
ice cream, sake, beer, cigarettes, songs, dancing, sports,
television, newspapers, and magazines. These people are, in other
words, the city people, the secondary/tertiary industry people.
If they did not have oil, it would be impossible for them to
maintain the civilization and culture I have described above, so
to them oil has a greater and more necessary existence than does
the Earth. The disappearance of oil is of greater significance to
them than the disappearance of the Earth. This is why they will
do everything in their power to seize the oil.

44

A company that allegedly cheated countless people out of great
amounts of money by means of high-pressure sales tactics and fake
gold. (Translator's note)



CHAPTER VIII
Everybody Farms

-- Escaping the City, Becoming a Farmer --

Since the city is the Great Evil that will ruin humanity and the
Earth, we must somehow get rid of it.


In order to accomplish this, it is important for as many people
as possible to break away from the city and become independent
farmers, and to take up Natural Cycle Farming, in which one does
not depend upon the city, but only upon the blessings of Nature.
It follows that the conventional professional farmers must
extricate themselves from modern urbanized high-quantity
agriculture and establish themselves in self-sufficient compound
small-scale farming.


As the numbers of such farmers grow, the city will shrink and
weaken, and when the effect has grown sufficiently, the city will
perish.

A Society in which Everyone Farms Guarantees Our Future

Above is the blueprint for the eradication of the cities that I
gave in Chapter V. To express it succinctly, it is the return to
primitive communistic society in which everyone farms; it is the
sliding back into an anarchistic agrarian society that has no
need of state power; it is the realization of an agrarian society
that has ceased all harmful and wasteful activities (i.e., the
activities of the secondary and tertiary industries). [45]


Getting out of the city and beginning to farm is, as I noted in
Chapter VI, easier said than done owing to a number of
difficulties. Especially difficult to the city white collar
worker is getting land.


I have repeatedly said that the agriculture problem is one of
agrarian population, [46] and that the problem of the agrarian
population is one of land. [47] Not only is the land problem the
root of the agricultural problem, it is of such great
significance that it influences, not only the city, but also all
of humanity, all other living things, and yes, the fate of the
entire Earth (just look at the present state of things -- the
city digs up the land and continues to cover it with concrete;
the end result is that we will have starvation in the middle of
convenience).

The Land Is Nature Itself

And now we arrive at the obvious question -- who shall possess
the Land? The answer is that it shall not be possessed by
individuals; it is not the territory of local governments nor of
nation-states; it was not meant for the public use of all the
peoples of the world; and it is not held in common by all the
living things on the Earth.


The Land is none other than Nature itself. Long before living
things -- including human beings -- appeared on the Earth the
Land already existed. It is therefore perfectly well for us to
conclude that the Land belongs to no one; it is the Earth itself,
it is Nature itself. So it is unpardonable for anyone, no matter
who, to destroy or contaminate the Land. It is the vilest act of
desecration to use the Land for selfish purposes, or to use it
arbitrarily for the benefit of a group or a nation-state.


What is known to the city as construction and development is to
Nature (the country) nothing less than violent acts of
destruction and contamination. The countless large buildings in
the big cities (which look like the many monuments in a
cemetery), paved roads, amusement parks, subways, factories, and
public facilities found in the country also tear up the Land and
cover it with concrete. [48] None of these things can be made
without hurting the Earth.


There is no need to go into detail over what will happen as the
final result of destroying the Land and wounding the Earth. It is
mistaken to believe that Nature will continue to put up with the
high-handedness of the city. Nature has been bent almost as far
as it can be bent, and when it reaches its limit it will slap
back at us with a force equal to that exerted upon it (just like
an earthquake). Nature will surely deal a great blow, and sadly,
that time is near. [49]

The Only Laws We Need Follow Are Those of Nature

As things stand now, there is no future for humanity or the
Earth. We are hopelessly locked into the mechanism of the
economic society, but if we do not put a stop to all construction
work now, we will regret it forever. We must find the resolution
to overthrow the economic society (the city). Material productive
power is a poweful force that shackles us with money, so we must
first of all reexamine material productive power, and then return
to the ancient past (material productive power did surely not
exist from the start) to see how things were.


What we will probably find is that, while there were no "rules of
the economic society," there were the Laws of Nature. Since wild
animals all live according to these laws you will never find a
wolf or a pheasant destroying the Earth. What wild animal has
ever tried to make the Land its private possession, and then used
it for its own selfish purposes?

Abolish Private Ownership of Land

The Land is, most emphatically, the property of Nature, yea, it
is Nature itself. Human beings also, when they use the Land,
merely borrow it from Nature for the time they need it; when we
have finished we must return it to Nature in its original state.


Returning the Land in its original state -- this requires the
abolition of private land ownership. Human beings, presumptuous
as they are, mistakenly believe that the Land is their own, and
that is why they harm it without a moment's reflection.


The same goes for farmland. Since farmland is treated as a
private asset, people occupy it and try to increase their wealth;
they fall prey to the idea that because it is their own they can
do whatever they like with it (like contaminating it with
agricultural chemicals); and they believe that land is a
commodity, and so they scheme to make money by selling it. The
culmination of these effects has brought about the present, all
but hopeless, plight of agriculture. (Though it is called
"agriculture," modern agriculture is actually a harmful practice
and a rebellion against Nature. It is only natural cycle
agriculture that can claim the right to borrow land from Nature.)


At first sight, it looks as though the private ownership of land
engenders a feeling of loving attachment to one's farmland, and
supports an ideology by which the land is well taken care of,
but it is actually the opposite. "It's my land, so if I want to
tear it up or sell it, that's my business." And particularly
depressing is the fact that ruining the land before selling it
brings in a higher price!


The tenant farmers of yore, though they did not own their land,
took care of it as they did their own children, maintaining and
building its fertility by applying great amounts of composted
organic matter. Nowadays everyone farms their own land, but we
see that in all parts of the country the farmland is going to
ruin. (Another major factor influencing the degree of farmland
deterioration is the amount of imported food.)


So what I would like to see the government do here is, in place
of Nature, take full responsibility for the preservation of the
Land, and embark upon a program of national management (it is of
course best if we can live like animals in Nature, for they
experience no disorder even without government, [50] but since it
will be some time before we reach that stage, this is the one
thing I would like the government to do).


Private ownership of farmland (and all other land, too, for that
matter) should be abolished, and the government, acting on
behalf of Nature, should lend the farmland to those who wish to
till it, and only for the time they actually use it. When the
tiller has finished, the land is returned, and the government
lends it to the next person. If the government reorganizes the
present Registry Office and brings in the necessary personnel,
they should be able to take care of this much without the use of
computers. If they attach a serial number to each plot and lend
farmland according to the number of family members, this could be
done even without the Ministry of Agriculture. Even if everyone
in Japan decides to farm, and requests flood the Registry Office,
there should be about five ares of land for each person, which is
enough to grow one's own food. Needless to say, the large-scale
farms should be dismantled.


Even if those in the city want to farm but can find no land by
themselves, we should be able to help them find it. We must not
overlook the fact that those who have had it with big city life
(or those who sense the danger in big city life) are burning
with the desire to take up farming. Without these conditions, it
is impossible to get people out of the cities and onto the farm.
Under the present system the people have a right to quit farming,
but urbanites have no opportunity to take up farming. This faulty
policy is responsible for the drop in the farming population, and
the rise of the urban population.


The sons and daughters of farmers, who show aversion to farming
are free to seek destruction by moving to the city, but
urbanites who fear the collapse of the city are unfortunately
prevented from leaving because of the land ownership system. It
seems to me that, rather than those who hate farming and run to
the city, the urbanites who, deeply concerned with the future of
humanity, have given up on the city and burn with the desire to
take up farming, will be of far more use to the future of
humanity and the Earth.
* * *
And now a word to those who, hunkering down in the city, continue
to dream of a luxurious and pleasant life:


As long as you exploit the farmers, and live in the city with
the intention of continuing your easy, gluttonous lifestyle
without dirtying your own hands, it is only natural that you must
be satisfied with very little space and with an anti-Nature
environment. That is urbanization. If the population did not
abandon the country, gather together in one place, and destroy
the natural environment, urbanization would be impossible.


Not satisfied with their cramped quarters and unpleasant
environment, the deluded politicians and arrogant urbanites came
up with the "Urban Planning Law," which is legislation meant to
seize more farmland, and by means of this law they force the
conversion of more farmland into urbanized areas. The urbanites
had best not forget that the farmland which they desire to
urbanize produces the food that keeps them alive. Perhaps they
want to live in great mansions without eating anything.


The spacious gardens we find in the Tanaka Mansion and other
such places should be used to grow soybeans and vegetables, and
the urban residents, including the rich, should put up with
living in cramped, high-rise buildings. It is only natural that
such people, seeking ease in the city, pay such a price. Though
their buildings fall over in an earthquake, and though they are
cramped and stuffy, they must accept these conditions. When the
time comes, as it inevitably will, they will have to make up for
the shortage of imported food by growing their own in baseball
fields, parks, and roadsides.
* * *
In the dominating classes of the present system there are great
numbers of people who, using the institution of private land
ownership as a basis to make money, attempt to maintain their own
superior position (there are very few famous politicians who have
never conducted any land dealings), so hoping for the abolition
of this institution is like seeking hot water under the ice. To
these dominators, losing land (or losing the means to pacify the
land-dazzled dominated classes with land) means loosing
everything, and that everything is power and property; they would
be cutting their own throats. Since abolishing private land
ownership is far easier said than done, we must push forward with
our plans for escape from the city and taking up farming while
under the present system.


It is fine for those with financial resources to buy land in an
depopulated part of the country, but it is not advisable for
those without money to borrow it and buy land.


Money moves around according to the laws of business and
industry, so trying to match it to the speed of agriculture,
which is bound by the laws of Nature (an extremely slow-paced
productivity) is like entering an automobile race with a
horse-drawn cart. Unless one is, from the very beginning,
prepared for failure, it is dangerous to borrow money to get
one's start. Even if the interest rate is half that for business,
or if someone will pay the interest for you (as with a subsidy,
for example), it is likely that you will be paying the loan back
for the rest of your life. No matter how much you work the amount
you owe will not diminish, but will in fact increase steadily due
to the devilish plundering effect of money (a stratagem known as
the market principle). Thus it is best to borrow or rent land
first.


The age when people inherited farms from their parents is coming
to a close. Children who grew up watching their parents labor
hard on the farm rarely ever choose to follow in their parents'
footsteps, and experiences. Of course things are different for
people who are in line to be doctors, teachers, or actors --
professions which can skim the sweet juices (jobs which, no
matter how hard one must study, offer far greater financial
rewards than farming) -- but most farm children choose not to
follow in their parents' footsteps, so they study hard, get into
a university, and choose a fruitful profession (one that makes
them a lot of money).


The eldest son (almost all children are eldest sons) goes to the
university, gets a job, and settles down in the city. In time
his parents on the farm grow old, and find that there is no one
to inherit the farm and carry on the work; the parents cannot, at
this point, demand that their son return to the farm, and the
son, for his part, has gained a respectable position, and does
not want to sacrifice this in order to become a farmer (besides,
he has tasted fully the sweetness of idleness and gluttony, and
could not possibly, in such a physical condition, take on the
work of a farmer). So he has no choice but to take in his aging
parents and look after them. And thus the reduction in the
farming population continues.


This phenomenon can be found in every farming village in the
country. The people who flowed into the city on the crest of the
rapid economic growth tidal wave are now, 30 years later, finding
that the time has come to take in their parents, whether they
like it or not. This problem will grow rapidly more serious
within the next 10 years or so.


Needless to say, as is symbolized by such officialese as
"farmland mobility," "coordination of farmland use," and
"fostering core farmers," the farmland that thus goes unused will
be gathered up and passed into the hands of aggressive farm
operators (i.e., those who affirm the good of mass offerings to
the city and who like to be on the receiving end of the city's
plundering), whereupon they will increase the scale of their
operations and carry on with the industrialization of agriculture
(this is known as the "intensive" use of farmland). Because of
this policy most of the farmland will either be sucked up by such
farmers, or will be invaded and exploited by other industries.


However, this policy will be successful only in the
easily-accessible farming villages. There will be no dilettantes
who, knowing from the start that they will lose money, will rent
much farmland in the inconvenient mountain villages where people
never made much money to start with. We can therefore expect the
farmland in the remote villages to fall into permanent disuse
after the aged farmers move to the city.


For those who wish to get out of the city and take up farming,
such isolated mountain villages are good places to borrow land
and get started. Long ago human beings lived and survived in the
foothills of the mountains, so such a place -- the border between
the plains and the mountains, is certainly the ideal environment
for people. Though it may be an economically poor place to live,
it is ecologically ideal.
* * *
Even though one may have left the city and fled to an
inconvenient mountain village to take up farming, it is
impossible to guarantee that one will thus be able to survive
into the twenty-first century. Even if, in the event of a nuclear
war, one managed to avoid a full-scale nuclear attack, the Earth
will cool as a result of nuclear war, and agriculture will suffer
a severe blow. There is no assurance that those who have left the
city and taken up farming in the mountains will be safe. One may
of course conceal about two years' worth of grain in a pit solo,
but there are yet difficult problems such as residual radiation
and the pillaging of starving people.


Still, when the city destroys itself by means of its own poisons
(the peace of waste, contamination, and destruction), the
independent farmers will not, as the modernized mass-offering
farmers will, be dragged down with it.


I shall explain the reason for this in the final chapter.

Chapter VIII Notes

45

[The author actually uses a term meaning literally "all the
members of an ethnic group farm."] The reason I say "ethnic-group
farming" instead of "citizen farming" is because I deny the
existence of the nation-state. I believe that the nation-state is
a power structure, a structure of domination and plunder (i.e.,
the root of urban evils). If we negate the great evils of the
nation-state, then of course the nation-state itself is negated.
If we negate the nation-state, then of course there are no
"citizens," and what remains is a group of people known as an
ethnic group or race.


On the other hand, the use of distinguishing terms like "ethnic
group" and "race" breeds racism, small-mindedness, and
exclusivism, so perhaps it would be better to employ terms like
"humanity" or "Earth people."


But since my discussion in this chapter concerns mainly the
island country of Japan, I will ask the reader's indulgence and
slip by with this makeshift term.

46

A social structure in which few farmers feed a great number of
idlers forces the farmers into labor-saving, high-yield,
mass-supply agriculture, and this necessitates the heavy use of
agricultural chemicals and chemical fertilizers, as well as
making the farmers neglect the application of compost to the
land. The inevitable result is oil-soaked fields and a kind of
agriculture characterized by contamination, plunder, and
destruction. One could also say that the idlers, by means of the
progress of science and technology, have promoted the
mechanization and contamination of agriculture, thus making it
possible for a handful of farmers to feed legions of idlers. The
city sucks up everything.


Therefore food contamination is, simply put, brought about by
the social structure, not by the laziness and greed of farmers.


Needless to say, the contempt for agriculture and the priority of
the secondary and tertiary industries are also causes of the fall
in the farming population. When over half the people were
farmers, half the content of our language and song books were
based in the farming villages, and the stories and songs
glorified agriculture and the farmers, but now that less than
half the population are farmers, such stories and songs have all
but disappeared. For the same reason, one rarely if ever sees the
farming villages or the farmers in television shows or in the
piles of magazines and novels.


In this case it is an inversion to say that the contempt for
agriculture and the respect for urban industries have brought
about the reduction in the farm population. Changes in the social
structure are brought about by the power relationships of
material productive capacity (or the money economy); social
trends and consciousness is merely a reflection of such.


Therefore the contempt for agriculture is not a problem of
education or attitude, but decidedly one of social structure.

47

This is the main theme of this chapter, and so I will write in
more detail about this later. But now I would like to emphasize
here that increasing the agrarian population (that is, sending
the secondary/tertiary population back to the farms), getting
everyone to pull weeds by hand, make compost, give up
agricultural chemicals, and produce modest quantities of clean
vegetables, while being our goal, is quite impossible and
unrealistic unless we solve the land problem.

48

There is no other building material which has so well built the
arrogant city and wrought such damage to the Land as concrete.
Has there ever been an instance in which cement was used for a
purpose other than to plaster over the Land? Whether it is made
into buildings, fences, wharves, Hume pipe, or to make channels,
its ultimate role is inevitably to block off the Land. So for
every bag of cement that is produced, that much more of the Land
will be covered over. And the cement factories are running at
full capacity every day, turning out great amounts of cement (to
cover over the Land), and sending it to be sold in the city.
"Urbanization" can now be perfectly equated to "concretization."

49

Nostradamus hinted that "the crisis of humanity will come
raining down from the sky," but, while I have no intention of
contending with the Great Nostradamus, I believe that the crisis
of humanity will come from the Land -- not as fast as falling
from the sky, but just as surely.


I have said it many times, and I will say it again: As long as
our present "peace" continues as it is -- destruction of the
forests, desertification, the loss of topsoil and the
accumulation of salts, the contamination of soil and water with
synthetic chemicals, and the accompanying expansion of the cities
-- we will see the desolation of the Land continue. "Peace"
signifies the stability, prosperity, and prodigality of the city,
and it is impossible to maintain this kind of peace without
sacrificing the Land.


It is "peace" that destroys the Land and leads humanity to ruin.
Furthermore, if a war should start Nostradamus will be correct;
either way, it means we have no future.


The only thing that will barely guarantee our survival is a
scaled-down life, a life of regression and austerity. To put it
another way, our survival depends solely upon the disappearance
of the Maker of Peace (the peace of prosperity and ease), that
is, the city.

50

The reason wars over land do not occur in the natural world as
they do in the human world is because other living things take
and accumulate no more than they need. A lion kills no more than
it needs to eat its fill, and a sparrow will not store up more
insects and seeds after it has eaten enough. Only human beings,
for whatever reason, establish economic societies, and go wild
over the accumulation of wealth. If we too do not know
sufficiency we will surely perish. Wild (natural) animals should
be our model.


CHAPTER IX
Independent Farming

Of all the occupations on Earth, the only one that allows us to
be independent is farming. All occupations other than farming
must depend at least upon agriculture, or else they have no
source of life; for this reason independence is impossible. If,
as a result of their contempt for agriculture, the other
occupations try to become independent of it, their practitioners
will soon die!

Agriculture is, at the least, none other than a "means in itself"
for maintaining one's own life, so as long as one does not seek
excesses such as convenience, extravagance, and ease, and is
prepared for a life of austerity, it is possible to become
totally independent.


What on earth do people mean, then, when they say, "It's
impossible to get along just by farming. One can't keep food on
the table by being a farmer"? It is one thing if one is referring
to factories or apartment buildings in the concrete cities, but
such a remark is quite incomprehensible if the speaker is a
person who has the land which produces the food by which he can
keep himself alive. But of course we know that these people mean
it is impossible for them to acquire the trinkets and gimcracks
and pleasures that urban extravagance offers.


The secondary and tertiary industries, in their infinite mercy,
make their governments grant subsidies to agriculture, which is
the only occupation on earth capable of independence, but this is
nothing less than a clever reversal meant to pull the wool over
our eyes. That agriculture must continually curry favor with
others as well as suffer great difficulties is without a doubt
because of the deception, dirty tricks, and schemes of Money (or
the schemes and plundering of the money economy, known as the
"market principle"), as characterized by agricultural subsidies.
Could there possibly be any other reason?


I therefore believe that in order for agriculture to avoid the
interference of the secondary and tertiary industries, it must
first become independent of money. Money cheats the farmers; the
devilish machinery of the money economy makes the farmers take on
debts, and its phantom money (loans) make double plunder
possible.


Note well that the ultimate cause of the farmers' privation lies
in the exchange of food for pieces of paper, and that subsidies
are mere bait to prepare for plunder.

Money: An Instrument of Plunder

The mint churns out tons of money, and with government bonds as
the medium, wads of this money roll to all corners of the country
(as, for example, the salaries of public employees and
appropriations for public works projects). [51] Some of this
paper money is saved, and some of it is used to buy food. If you
take it to the store and throw it into a shopping basket, it
changes magically into food. So there is absolutely no basis for
asserting that money will not be used for the plunder of food. If
there were no such plunder by means of money, it would be
impossible for the city to survive for even a day unless it took
food by force.


Let us assume now that part of that money which was saved is now
lent out to the farmers in the form of agricultural loans. It
will be immediately consumed by the purchase of machinery,
fertilizers, and agricultural chemicals, whereby it is returned
to the pockets of Capital; all that remains with the farmers are
debts. And just as I pointed out before, these debts contribute,
over a long period of time, to the plunder of agricultural
products. In order to pay back their loans, the farmers must work
themselves into the ground, continually offering great quantities
of farm products to the city.


Money is none other than a weapon for the purpose of ripping off
agricultural produce.

Control of Agriculture with Debts

During a meeting at which was discussed the internationalization
of agriculture, Ibuka Masaru, the Honorary President of Sony,
said that "Agriculture has only 1/1,500th the productive power of
industry." Since money as well is produced at 1,500 times the
efficiency of food, it too functions according to the same logic
as industry does. (For example, let us say that you borrow money
from the bank. If you turn out goods at the rate of several tens
a minute, you can pay back the principle with interest in only a
short time. Or, if you move several thousand units of your
product around in a certain way, you can always pay back the
money you borrowed for capital.) But Nature moves according to
very slow rhythms, and agriculture is bound by the laws of
Nature; to try and make agriculture move at the fast pace of
money inevitably means that agriculture will be left behind.
Should one borrow money in order to get started in agriculture,
one will find that, even if the interest is half what it would be
for business or industry (or even if one gets someone to pay the
interest for one -- for example, a subsidy), it will be quite
impossible to pay back the loan by means of agricultural produce
alone.


The same goes for dairy farmers in Hokkaido, for those who raise
cattle, for those who raise broilers and laying chickens, for
citrus farmers, for mechanized farmers, and even for the
American farmer, the incarnation of the large-scale modern
farming method (it is said that, as of 1985, American agriculture
is 54 trillion in debt). And this is not the only way money
oppresses agriculture, for it has yet to rout the farmer
decisively.
* * *
If, for example, there is a bumper crop of cabbage, the total
cost of harvest, sorting, packing, shipping and kickbacks at the
market is sometimes far greater than the selling price of the
cabbage. The more the farmers ship, the more money they lose, and
so there are times when they plow the cabbage into the fields
with a bulldozer.


The more the farmers work (the more food they offer the city),
the more money they lose. Has there ever been such an idiotic
system? And that is money economics for you -- the devilish
machine (the market principle) invented by the city.


It is quite true that, after a certain point, one needs no more
agricultural products since stuffing oneself full might bring
about digestive disorders. An excess of other products will not
bring about indigestion, and as long as one has a place to put
them, it is possible to have many in order to feed one's vanity.
It is the market principle that takes advantage of this one weak
point of agriculture.


The market principle -- another way of expressing this is
"business." For example, the price of eggs is not decided as a
result of competitive selling on the market; in actuality, a few
market big shots make the decision after seeing how many and what
kind of eggs are being shipped into the market at Tokyo. Local
prices are based upon the price in Tokyo, so when Tokyo gets a
lot of eggs, the price in other places is low even if there are
not enough eggs. Therefore the market principle is a business
technique, the art of wheeling and dealing.


Back a hundred or so years ago, this was a tea-producing region.
Every year at tea-picking time the broker would visit the
farmers. "This year the price of tea is higher than ever. Give it
everything you've got, and pick every last leaf."


Joyful at the news, the farmers would work their hardest,
squeezing every last bit out of their tea fields. The broker,
watching for the moment when the tea was ready, would run
breathlessly to the farmers with a telegram in hand: "This is
terrible! I've just received a telegram from Yokohama -- the
price for new tea has fallen to rock bottom!" Thus it was the
simplest thing for the merchant to use business technique to
deceive the farmers.


Thus the merchants, waving the golden banner of "market
principle," used the necessity and preservability of agricultural
products to their own advantage. We must not fall for such
tricks. Food is none other than that which supports life. Even if
the harvest brings in more than is needed, the food that ends up
in the stomachs of the idlers must have, as that which supports
their lives, a very great value. If, Mr. Ibuka, agriculture has
only 1/1,500th the productive capacity of industry, then
agricultural produce must have 1,500 times the value of
industrial products, right? This is the true market principle,
and the just appropriation of value. A proper deal would exchange
1,500 transistor radios at 30,000 each for one bag of rice.


Thus the market principle is a tricky scheme whereby the
merchants do the same with the essential portion of agricultural
produce (i.e., that which goes into the bellies of the idlers) as
they do with the excess -- they cause the price to hit rock
bottom. In Nature, where there is no such scheming, there is also
no market principle. No matter how many zebras there are, if all
it takes is one to fill the belly of a lion, the lion will find
infinite value in that one zebra.


Therefore, the market principle is the illegitimate child of the
money economy. Merchants cannot carry on business without money.
It is money that causes prices to nose-dive. With bartering, it
is impossible to get a head of cabbage from someone without
giving something fair in return. Getting that head of cabbage
without giving something of like value in return is robbery, pure
and simple. The techniques of business, then, are the same as the
laws by which robbers operate.


We must get rid of the robbers. We must also get rid of the
city, which inevitably brings robbers into existence. And we must
get rid of money, which makes possible the functions and
activities of the city. If we allow the continued existence of
money, it will not only keep plundering agriculture, but it will
also destroy us.

Getting away from Money: The Bagworm Revolution

Money makes us squander resources, destroy Nature, and
contaminate the environment. These urban evils (the activities of
the city) are all carried out "under duress" because of money. It
is because of money (the pursuit of profit) that, even though
there is absolutely no need, we continue to squander resources,
strew pollution, and compete madly in the production of yet more.
[52] It is because of money that we search desperately for more
construction work to do. The purpose of public works projects is
to "make the money circulate," but this cannot be done without
destroying Nature. Money is trashing the Earth.


"Money is the root of all evil. Since money appeared, all of
creation has been dark, and greed and evil have ruled the world."
Shoeki was already saying this in the middle of the Edo Period,
before the advent of industrial society.


Money is the root of all the above evils, and if we do not
immediately (it may already be too late) banish it from the
Earth, we will experience a most grave crisis, but since money is
the life blood of the city, banishing it will require an
earthshaking occurrence, and the useless softies in the city will
not be able to bear it. They will put up a desperate struggle,
and, using everything at their disposal (the cream of science and
technology), they will try to preserve money. It is for this very
reason that we will be unable to avoid disaster.


This is a despairing situation. We must despair of banishing
money, and we must despair of avoiding catastrophe. Previously I
examined this problem from a different angle, and said that we
must not waste our effort trying to change something that is
hopeless to change, but that we should begin by putting distance
between ourselves and money. Should we continue to cling to, and
depend upon, that which is a weapon of plunder and the ultimate
cause of destruction, the plundering will become worse, and we
will advance toward ruin with ever greater speed. Before anything
else, we must cease our tightrope act. Getting away from money
will not insure our safety, but we can at least avoid direct
entanglement. The more we depend upon economic ties with the
city, the greater is the danger, but the more distance we can put
between ourselves and the city's poisons, the less chance there
is of our being dragged directly into the morass when the city
begins to disintegrate. To depend completely upon the city
(listen up, you large-scale farmers!) while expecting at the same
time to come out unscathed when the city falls is like hoping for
safety in an airplane that is about to crash. When the city
begins to disintegrate, shrink, and recede, pollution will lessen
and Nature's power of recovery will awaken by the same degree. In
time we will again have a livable environment.


Until that time comes, we must, without the help of the city,
establish ourselves so that we can survive without it. This is
the Bagworm Revolution.
City Prosperity, Country Destitution

Parting company with money is exactly the same as parting company
with the city. In Chapter VI, I wrote in detail about this, but I
would like to make some comments here on lessening one's
dependence on the city, and increasing one's dependence on
Nature. Here I offer some concrete proposals for Natural Cycle
Organic Farming.


Until relatively recently, almost all Japanese farmers practiced
self-sufficient farming; they had some domestic animals, returned
the manure and their own wastes to the Land, and fed themselves
and their animals with the food harvested from the Land. If one
farms thus, it is not at all difficult to be independent, and the
blessings (i.e., interference) of the city are totally
unnecessary. Even though these farmers are independent, they were
poverty-stricken, but this was not at all due to the
retrogressive and closed nature of self-sufficient agriculture.
Their destitution was due fully to the high-handed plunder of the
city. You critics out there! You must not evade the real
question. If the farmers of both former and modern ages were
destitute because of agriculture's retrogressive character, then
why is modern petroleum-based agriculture, as represented by
American agriculture, suffering under such onerous debts? There
has never been any problem other than that which has always
dogged agriculture: the plunder of the city. The problem is that
the critics and politicians take for granted their right to fill
their bellies without soiling their own hands.


Note that the proletariat and farmer literature of the recent
past examined in detail the destitution, greed, and ignorance of
the farmers, and wrote that almost all of it had been brought
about by the high-handedness of the bourgeoisie and the evil
landlords, but this is ridiculous. As I demonstrated in Chapter
V, the true criminals are the vast hordes of non-tilling,
gluttonous idlers, the proletariat writers among them. The
landlords, who were held up for criticism as the bad guys, were
merely the medium though which the city carried on its plunder.
Such off-the-mark literary investigation does not even rate a
snort.


If, as Shoeki wrote, we establish a system wherein emperors,
scholars, and beggars all till the soil and produce their own
food, then how can there possibly be "the glory that plunders,"
"the prosperity of the city," and "the destitution of the
country"?

Independent Agriculture

Let us now imagine a kind of agriculture that is like the natural
cycle self-sufficient farming of former times (the kind they told
us needed nothing as long as they had salt), but which in
addition is not the object of plunder. And, using this as a
blueprint, let us see how we can establish it in this modern
world, in which modern agriculture is flourishing.


Since I have some chickens, I will talk about this from my own
experience of chicken farming. If one has chickens then rice is
free, vegetables are free, potatoes and fruit are free; things
we human beings eat -- that which keeps us alive -- are all free.


Since I produce rice to feed myself, I do not sell it, and I do
not produce much more than I need. And of course there is no
need to pile on agricultural chemicals. Even if for this reason
the amount harvested drops a little, no one will complain. As
long as I grow enough to eat for one year, it is not worth
worrying about the amount of the harvest. If one applies poisons
and produces so much poisoned rice that one cannot eat it at all,
the final result is only damage to one's health.


I sell a few eggs. Since they are natural eggs, they have great
value, sometimes selling for twice the market price. I feed the
chickens many things that are ordinarily thrown away, so I spend
about half as much as usual on feed. Even when the chickens lay
fewer eggs than usual I always come out ahead. The money I get
from these eggs represents what I described in Chapter VI: the
smallest possible link with the meddling city. With this money I
pay what I must, like taxes, contributions, education, and the
like. When the cities perish I will no longer need this money,
and I will not have to sell eggs any more. When that time comes I
will substantially reduce the number of chickens down to where I
can supply all their feed myself.


Every year I apply chicken manure to my fields to build up the
soil, so my plants are highly resistant to insects and disease.
Of course there are insects, and disease sometimes occurs during
cold and wet weather. However, I have never lost everything to
insects or disease, and for the past 30 years I have always had
enough to eat.


Healthy human beings have resistance to worms, tuberculosis,
tooth decay, and viruses, but sickly people are always suffering
illness. We can observe the same phenomenon in food plants. If
one raises the plants organically and supplies them sufficiently
with the blessings of Nature (air, sunlight, water, the Land),
one will have healthy plants that are highly resistant to disease
and insects. Even if you lose 20 percent, the other 80 percent
will survive. We need only eat this to insure our own survival.
This is what I mean by self-sufficient agriculture.


We must also supply ourselves with farm implements and items for
household use. Our forebears all did this, and that is why they
apparently "needed only salt." In addition, almost all of these
implements were made of recyclable materials like bamboo, wood,
and straw, where they did not have to live in fear of running out
of underground resources, and they did not pollute the
environment in their manufacture. What is more, once these
things wore out, they could be discarded just as they were, for
they would in time decompose and return to the soil.


Is there any room in this kind of agriculture for contamination,
destruction, and profligacy? What need is there of money, or of
living in fear of the self-destruction brought about by money?

Become a Lone Wolf

To summarize: Independent farming signifies that which is
independent of money, and independence from money is the same as
independence from the city. Independence from the city means
independence from government, from agricultural cooperatives,
from the manufacturers and services, and, if we go a little bit
further, independence from the consumers. The consumers are not
being kind to the farmers by buying their produce; the farmers
are blessing the consumers with what is left over after they grow
enough for themselves. So if we stop giving food to the
consumers, we will become independent of them.


The independence described above is independence from our
immediate enemy, so our mission is clear. If one has the
determination and resolution to carry through it should somehow
be possible. As a matter of fact, though our numbers are still
small, people doing just this are scattered throughout the entire
country, so it is not at all impossible. Though difficult, one
can in fact avoid the disaster assured by our present society of
prosperity.


But there is one thing I would like to emphasize here, and it is
that we must endeavor to achieve an even more difficult kind of
independence. Allow me to explain.


First of all, independence from one's neighbors (this can be
construed as independence from custom, from convention, and from
history).


"Solidarity" and "cooperation" sound good, but in reality this
means merely giving in to the meddling of one's neighbors, and
what is more, those neighbors are repulsive cowards who have
been dirtied by their toadying to the city. The "common sense"
and "reality" that they value so highly are none other than the
old customs that have been cultivated in order to make them
nourish and preserve the city. Do you have the bravery to become
independent of these shackles?


The farmer spirit is almost the same as the sycophant spirit.
That spirit of sycophancy -- it is licking the boots of the
feudal lords, the landlords, the politicians, and the
agricultural cooperatives; it is sucking up to the extravagant
and self-centered city housewives, to the teachers, to the
policemen, to the celebrities and writers and critics (just
recall the servile fawning of the farmer who is asked to say
something on television in front of some celebrities).


That spirit of sycophancy is directly concerned with the farmer
next door. If the neighbor does it, I will too. "What? The
neighbor got a new combine? Quick -- call the co-op!" In the
world there are legions of farmers like this. They must stay
abreast of their neighbors in everything. They cannot stand to
get behind their neighbors in rice planting, harvesting,
contributions, or travel.


But it is not only their neighbors. They observe the movements of
everyone in the neighborhood, worrying so much about getting
behind that they are quite forlorn. This mental state has been
brought about by the strong will to stay together with the other
farmers, a strategy which was meant to help them bear the
oppression of the city. It is not mistaken to say that this
crisis mentality -- the constant fear of falling out of step with
the group and being trampled to death -- has engendered this
complex toward "the farmer next door."


Every farmer should become a lone wolf. Any farmer who is not
prepared to become a lone wolf is not qualified to preach
independent farming. Only a perverse person will establish true
independence. "The neighbor planted his rice? Well then, I will
wait another month before I plant mine." This kind of perversity
will bring about true independence. As long as one produces food
only for oneself, why should it be necessary to keep watching
one's neighbors and worry about what they are doing? Even if you
make a mistake and harvest only half of what you had planned,
then consume that half and survive on it. If that is not enough,
then eat wild plants. Independent farming does not necessarily
mean following in the footsteps of large-scale agriculture, which
produces an overabundance of contaminated food and makes great
offerings of food to the city (in actuality, this is none other
than urban-dependent agriculture).


Go ahead and laugh (it is the laugher who must expend the
effort; the act requires nothing of me), but we must plant when
and what we please. Still, this does not mean we should ignore
the right time to plant. It does not matter if we have
coincidental similarities with our neighbors. Perversity for the
sake of perversity is not good.


If you want to reduce your acreage then do it without worrying
about government policy. If you are producing enough rice for
yourself, then there is no need for any more paddy acreage.
Instead produce beans or potatoes, or whatever you like. But when
you reduce paddy acreage, you must not consider taking subsidies
for it. This is just a clever government device for shackling
you.
* * *
But there is an unfortunate side to this as well: We must even
consider becoming independent of our families.


Even a family is an individual subject to independence. It has a
character with its own individuality. Even the education mothers
[53] know very well that things never go the way they wish. "The
neighbor has planted his rice," say Grandpa and wife, "so if we
don't plant ours soon, we'll become the laughing stock of the
county." And they keep harping on this. If one plants rice too
early it will grow too quickly, and one is sure to be visited by
blight, leafhoppers, and blow-downs. Yet, one's family members,
in their drive to do as the neighbors do, continue to insist on
early planting. But here is where one must firmly stand one's
ground, and standing one's ground means independence from the
family. No matter what Grandpa and the wife say, stand by your
own beliefs. If they will not listen, then let them plant their
own half early, and when their paddies are overrun with blight
and insects, make sure they realize that it is their own fault.


Farmers should note well that true independence signifies an
existence of splendid isolation in which one holds to one's own
principles.
* * *
If in this way lone wolves (i.e., self sufficient, austere people
of splendid isolation) populate the world, and if, no matter
where one looks, there are only perverse farmers who do not toady
to the city, then before we know it (that is, without the need
for violence) and inevitably, the social revolution will have
taken place. The city, on its way to deconstruction, will begin
to shrink (the city will not be able to bear the food shortage),
[54] and the secondary and tertiary industries will find there is
no way to stop their decline. Therefore the pollution of the
Earth -- the waste, contamination, and destruction -- will
decrease precipitously, and we will be able to have a little hope
for the future of humanity and the Earth. It is then we will
realize that there is still a little hope of saving ourselves.
When that time comes, we will want to tear down the now useless
city buildings and return the Land to its original form, but we
will find that tearing them down and discarding the waste
requires vast amounts of energy, and that, no matter where we
discard this rubble it will cover Land, so the city may just
become a huge ghost town. Therefore we must now try to prevent
its further spread.


The people will till the little remaining land, and will
reproduce only as many people as that arable land will support.


Thus, if we take a cold, hard look at the future, we see that
the only way for us to survive is to either exterminate the urban
poison, or to eke out an existence as lone-wolf farmers.


Even if the city perishes, we must not let it take us down with
itself.

Chapter IX Notes

51

Government bonds are ordinarily distributed among, and forced
off on the city banks, and after a time the Bank of Japan pays
the interest and purchases them. Then the government buys them
back from the Bank of Japan with the paper money it has
overproduced. Problems such as whose account book the bonds are
listed in, when they will be redeemed, etc., are of only
superficial concern because the principle objective is to spread
overproduced money around the country. It is just like a magician
transforming leaves into wads of money, for there is hardly any
sleight of hand which is as easy, advantageous, or interesting.
And since every government in the world is competing in this
maneuver, no one can avoid inflationary government debts.
Inflation during times of recession is a strange phenomenon that
owes its existence to this magician's trick. That is why every
year sees a rise in prices and countering pay raises, as well as
greater amounts of money in circulation. On the other hand, if
there were no inflation (i.e., if they did not print more money
and flood the country with it), there would probably be another
economic panic as there was in the 1930s when the big capitalists
had all the money and everyone else had none.

52

One could say that the spirit of urban competition and glory has
brought about excessive production, but this spirit has been
nurtured by the money economy itself. It is no mistake to say
that, if there were no money, there would also not be such insane
competition and glory-seeking.

53

Term describing a common type of mother in Japan. Since people
are usually judged not by ability, but by their academic
credentials, the education mothers send their children to private
evening schools and make them study hard so the children will be
able to pass the difficult examinations for the most prestigious
high schools and universities. (Translator's note)

54

When this time comes, there will be no way to get by on imported
food. The city will forget that it has repeatedly invaded and
plundered other countries, driving them to desperation, and will,
in order to continue its own gluttony, attempt to maintain its
food imports by force, ignoring the starvation of other peoples.
But where on this depleted planet is the city going to find the
land to nourish itself?





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