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Wednesday, March 2, 2011

The Importance Of Having Integrity

The Importance Of Having Integrity

integrity 200x142 The Importance Of Having IntegrityToday I’m going to skip writing in detail about something that is clearly preparedness related, and touch on something completely different.
I read about something today that was pretty disturbing. Before I go into details on what it was, I want to touch on a core life principle that I feel is important to having a quality life.

Integrity – Without It, You Have Nothing

That principle is integrity.
Integrity is officially defined as a consistency of actions, values, methods, measures, principles, expectations, and outcomes. Put a bit differently and certainly more simply, to have integrity is to be honest, be truthful, and act in a way that is consistent with your principles.
Integrity is what makes you a person worth being around. I simply refuse to be involved with people that lack integrity in their actions and behavior. And I know I’m not the only one out there that feels like this.
I actually believe that lacking integrity is worse than being an openly evil person. Monsanto, for example, is a company that pursues goals that are repugnant to me. But they are open about those goals, and they act consistently with them. This lets me decide whether to support them and their products with my dollars or not.
But saying one thing and doing something else is completely different. Think back to a time when someone professed one thing, and decided to act completely differently. Remember the sense of deception and betrayal you felt when you found out what really happened?
Having integrity means you stand up for what’s right in your world view. It means doing the right thing, even if nobody is looking. And it definitely means doing the right thing when people ARE looking.
Be truthful.
Be consistent with your public and private values and beliefs. Don’t say something in public if you don’t believe it.  Don’t contradict your words with your actions.
Always make the right choice, even when it’s not the easy path.
Choose your principles carefully, and stick with them.
Always do the right thing. Always.
Living a life of integrity will not always be easy. And sometimes it can be incredibly difficult. But living without integrity isn’t living.
I’m not perfect by any means, and don’t always do the right thing. Nobody does. But I strive for integrity every day, and you should too.

Why The Heck Are You Talking About This, Rudy?

homestead cabin 200x128 The Importance Of Having IntegrityBy now you’re probably wondering why I’m writing this. Well, wonder no longer!
There is a family in southern California that has created a large business around the concept of homesteading in urban environments. They do classes, and have a whole bunch of relatively high quality content.
They were a source of good information and how-to details for people who want to practice self sufficiency in urban environments.
You’ll note that I speak in past tense here, because this family has shown a crystal clear lack of integrity.
They were recently awarded trademarks for various commonly used words such as ‘urban homestead’ and ‘urban homesteading’ and have promptly begun sending cease and desist style letters to people using those phrases. They are threatening to sue, and are filing unwarranted DMCA requests.
In the last couple of days they have:
And that’s just a few of the more public things that they’ve done.
They claim they are doing this to protect the terms from corporate entities.
I say it displays a complete lack of integrity and respect for others and for a community they claim to have been a part of.

An Appropriate Response

shunned 200x119 The Importance Of Having IntegrityThe Amish have the concept of shunning. I believe that this is an appropriate response when people behave like this family has. You’ll note the distinct lack of links to their website or mention of their name.
Jack Spirko over at the Survival Podcast suggests we show our support for those under attack by buying a copy of Kellys book. And that’s what I’m doing. And you should too.
I’ve just bought two copies of it, and I’m going to give away one of them to whoever leaves the best comment on the topic of integrity. If you end up being picked, I expect you to demonstrate your integrity and commit to spreading the word of what’s going on here, and to encourage others to support the people that are under attack from this duplicitous family. Use the book as a conversation piece. That’s what I’ll be doing.


  1. This is a nice offer, and I would enjoy reading the book, although I live in a small town, not a city. I'm sure many of the principles would apply, since I don't have room for a large garden, animals, etc.

    I think you did good job on the subject of integrity. My take on it

    "Integrity is the internal commitment to do the right thing under any circumstance. People of integrity will be honest, decent and fair even if they don't seem to personally benefit by their goodness." (This is a quote from my book on Proverbs, "Roaring Lions, Cracking Rocks and Other Gems from Proverbs." After the quote I tell a story about how integrity cost Henry Ford millions of dollars).

  2. I'm familiar with the website you're referring to and was quite inspired by them about 8 or 9 years ago when they were just a family that blogged about the way they lived. Then they changed and saw that they could make a living teaching people the skills that they used to grow food in their front and backyard. They redesigned their website and became an "institution" and I found their information was no longer very inspiring to me. I thought that their "family" site was empowering and educational and the new "institutional" site was more about promoting their classes which I was not interested in attending. So I stopped going to their site and haven't been there in years. I have however run across several blogs in the past few weeks that are upset, and rightly so in my opinion, about the trademark of the word homesteading. I'm disappointed that this family have taken the stance that they have regarding the trademark. I read a lot of different blogs and have been pleased to see many posts regarding this issue and none of them have been in support of the trademark. I enjoyed your post on the topic. The only thing I can think of to do to counter this wrong action, is to keep doing my own homesteading and sharing my knowledge with friends and family as they wake up and realize how important these skills are, the same way I learned - for free.