America’s 1,000 year old, resilient urban environment

This is a satellite image of Taos Pueblo, a 1,000 year old North American urban environment. What you see is a dense, walkable urban core surrounded by fields with common pasture lands to the west and common food and fuel forest to the east. The reservation is 95,000 acres of high desert that gets ~9 inches of rain per year. It currently supports ~2,000 but I’m sure it could support more. In pre-contact days it probably supported at least that many and was a regional manufacturing and trade center WITHOUT destroying the environment on which it depended. This, I believe, is the model for sustainability and health that we should be looking to. Commonly owned wood fuel and wild game comes from the forest. Horses and buffalo are pastured to the west. A commonly owned watershed provides water. Privately owned fields round out the resource based economy. Inside the walls of the pueblo are where you will find craft manufacturers of jewelry, pottery & other items. You’ll also find cottage industry bread bakers, tanners, traditional clothing makers and family owned & operated restaurants.

Of course, all of this is destroyed when you bring in big box retailers and fast food restaurants, subsidized through billions of dollars worth of tax payer dollars to support an unsustainable economic model of supply side economics turned into corporate welfare. You also destroy this by bringing in non traditional cultural notions of private property, and replace indigenous philosophies of tribalism with western notions of individualism. This, of course, has been precisely the process of imperialism which the white world has brought down on the heads of tribal people on the North American continent. And this is why we fight! Warrior up.

Here’s a google map link to the location:

Taos Pueblo


About Vince

I am a Tlingit, born and raised in Tlingit Country, and a proud member of the Tlingit Nation.
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