Ramblinactivist, camp cook at the 2008 Free Range Weekend
Arriving in Shropshire for a weekend camping workshop on low impact lifestyles, 2013
Ramblinactivist’s Blogs:

About the Blogs

This is the central index for Paul Mobbs’ blogs – listing the latest posts from all four themed blogs.

My five themed blogs

‘The Metablog’.
My work-related occasional blog. It examines the troublesome and often difficult meanings behind today’s news and events, rather than simply repeating the ‘conventional wisdom’ of the mass/social media
‘Banburyshire Rambles’.
A photographic record of my walks around ‘Banburyshire’ and ‘The Irondowns’, and occasionally as part of my work around Britain, the areas beyond.
‘Long Walks & Anarcho-Primitivism’.
A blog on lifestyle change and simplicity, exploring the ecological and psychological dimensions of regularly spending time outdoors.
‘An Anarchist’s Cookbook’.
A blog on food, nutrition, and low impact lifestyles outside the expectations of ‘consumer society’.

All the blogs are hosted via
The Free Range Activism Website (FRAW)

About Ramblinactivist’s Blogs

Why do I blog? Writing is what I do; it’s the basis of my work and the main means by which I explore my own ideas.

I'm Paul Mobbs: Rambler; Activist/Hacktivist; Author; Researcher; Deep Ecologist; but none of the subsequent parameters in that list exist without the influence of the first.

Why “Ramblinactivist”?

It wasn’t my idea. It was a label given to me in the peace movement during the middle-1980s, and it sort of stuck. I use it because, more than anything else, it very succinctly describes what it is I do.

I’ve been working with community groups for almost 40 years. 2021 marks thirty years since I left my ‘conventional’ job in engineering to become a ‘researcher & activist for hire’ – working first all around Britain. Then, due to my IT skills, with development, education, and human rights projects in different countries. In all honesty though, what working with people from other countries taught me was how badly ‘over-developed’ people in Britain have become.

an animated image of the stick fire grate in use
The Stick-Fire Grate – my ‘free’ design for a D.I.Y low carbon outdoors trivot as an alternative to LPG, 2017.

In all that time my focus on ecological issues has not changed from where it started out: Learning to live simply as a child; in a family generations of whom had lived that way; growing food at home and on allotments; keeping chickens; and foraging in the countryside. It made me an environmentalist.

Of course, at that time, this lifestyle wasn’t about being ‘ecological’ or ‘green’. It’s simply the reality of growing up at the poor end of the traditional ‘semi-rural working class’ in Britain at that time. Before consumerism came along and sought to eradicate that kind of lifestyle.

Paul Mobbs/MEIR: ‘Arrest the Cabinet’, 2015
Arresting the Cabinet, in order to be able to challenge the accountability of ministers in the subsequence court case, 2015. You can watch the video on YouTube.

In part, these blogs document my experiences within the ecology movement, to pass on what I have learned from others

Curiously, I later found that my early deeply ecological perspective was not welcomed in the movement who professed to represent that view point. I’ve been exploring that disconnect ever since; in part because it provides an excellent guide to why – of all the ‘radical’ social movements that arose in the 1950s and 1960s – the environmental movement has failed to make major political change.

I ‘was there’ (associated at the time with The Green Party, Greenpeace, and especially Friends of the Earth) when the UK environment movement went mainstream around 1989-1996. I fought those battles; and lost. As the corporate take-over of environmentalism slowly eradicated any sense of needing ‘radical’ change to the consumer lifestyle in order to halt ecological destruction.

Snow on Mynydd Du (from Mynydd Llansadwrn)
Snow on Mynydd Du
(from Mynydd Llansadwrn)

Staying for a while in the wilds of Wales to work with groups in the region, I have the opportunity to go ramble over the hills.

Thirty years later the growing body of research evidence shows that the concept of ‘green’, trumpeted as the means to secure ecological change thirty years ago, is truly bankrupt. Unfortunately, having nailed themselves to ‘green consumerism’, the leaders of the mainstream eco-corporations are having problems unravelling those commitments now.

It’s how we move on from that situation, towards something truly progressive in terms of humans and their future relationship to the environment, which drives my work today.

In different ways all my blogs, like my work for the past thirty years, focus on the same thing. The demonstrable reality that the route to solving the ecological crisis is based upon “Less”. And, albeit unwelcome for today’s ‘affluent consumer society’, that the complex, metasticising impacts of modern technology require us to abandon highly material lifestyles, and live more simply.

Each blog represents a different facet of the same issue. Practical experience has shown me that people are more easily switched-on to change through different mechanisms which appeal to their personal outlook; and certainly these blogs look at ecological issues from outside the mainstream ecological perspective. More importantly though, as Jung emphasised a century ago, any process of change has to be routed in both ‘intellectual’ and ‘experiential’ perceptions; neither alone is able to convince people that change is required.

Do not stare into the Kelly Kettle, lest the Kelly Kettle stares back into thee
“Do not stare into the Kelly Kettle, lest the Kelly Kettle stares back into thee”

Finally I call all of my blogs, ‘occasional’; they are not produced according to any schedule. That’s because I only produce them when I have something to say, rather than just for the sake of saying something to echo something else going on in the world today. In a world already overloaded with information, I hope that you find what I do produce, when I feel the need to speak, helps you to perceive more of this beautiful world around us.

The Free Range Network logo
Creative Commons CC-BY-SA-NC logo