By Jacques Ellul

The writer argues that "an simply distracted patron society is stuck up in a quickly constructing, uncontrollable technological approach . . . . each challenge generates a technological resolution; pcs breed ever higher, extra fragile, and weak structures. however the recommendations bring up extra and bigger difficulties than they remedy . . . . accountability, contemplation, civility, and spirituality suffer." (Choice)

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Sample text

Some think there is still much arable land that can be used (up to twice the amount already in production). Others regard it as madness to try to bring most of this land into cultivation, since it would involve disastrous deforestation. We should also note that during the thirty-five years that would be needed for this doubling of cultivated land, the population, according to every calculation, would also double. In absolute figures there would thus be twice as many undernourished people as today.

In many cases, however, the danger is not apparent at all (and this is one of the inevitable setbacks to serious ecologists) -it comes to light only after long arguments, by means of a specific method that must be used to present to the public problems that they do not understand, in studies that demand a certain competence. 61 Yet this is not the end of the matter, for even if awareness developed it would come up against three decisive obstacles. First we have the existence of the so-called military-industrial complex, which really ought to be called the technico-military-statist complex.

Ambivalence can take the form of stunning reverses. We shall have occasion to list some of these. In this context let us simply say that technique has always functioned in a mode of rationality but that at the present point of development it is falling into irrationality and at times delirium. It has always had utility in view and followed the criteria of utility, but it has now reached a climax in generalized inutility. It has always sought value, but it now functions in a way that contributes nothing of value (mere services and data processing).

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