How to win hearts and minds

Winning hearts and minds would be a LOT easier if the Left controlled more media. The Right has Fox News, Sinclair Broadcasting, Breitbart, AM talk radio, etc. Nationally there are a few lefty media outlets. We need local ones that we control. The numerous lefty and Democratic interests should band together and organize a news and opinion website and/or radio station that is owned by no single group but is managed by a nonprofit aligned with liberal/progressive values.

There are plenty of wealthy progressives in Washington State. Funding such a non-profit should be feasible.

Crowd-funded journalism is needed, because newspapers are closing and down-sizing.

It's our action now

It’s up to us, we the people, if we want to save life on earth and build a better world for all. The 1% cannot and will not save us. They are afflicted with the deadly greed disease. The two major parties will not save us, the police and military will not save us; they are all owned and their power usurped by the 1%. We cannot unite under the banner of resistance groups with a great leader anymore. They will out our leaders just like they took out such people as John F. Kennedy, Martin Luther King, Malcolm X and others who take a stand for people.

We cannot have a violent revolution to set things right. When we resist violently to bring justice the 1% will use police and military power against us with deadly force. The 1% can’t help it, they are drugged with greed for power and wealth. They have indoctrinated our kids in schools to become good sycophants to their cause. Get smart, get a good job with their corporations and get ahead of everybody else. Students are trained to become good employees for the corporations owned by the 1%. Liberal arts have been denigrated. The game is to win. That is all that matters, compete and beat, that is what our world has become.

Let’s meditate on this a bit. Look where it has gotten us. We are in constant wars, our planet has been brought to the point of total destruction and disaster. Our air is polluted, our lakes, rivers and now the oceans are polluted and dying, all for their profit. We have created all kinds of technological developments. Every time something good is invented that can benefit people, they turn it around and use it against us and their other so-called enemies.

From the 1%’s viewpoint everything is positive and wonderful. They own over 50% of the wealth and can live in luxury. They can buy anything they want including our police, our military, our judiciary, our Congress and the executive branch. The rest of us do not matter. If we are not a consumer of their products or serve in their employment we are useless humanity. What happens to us doesn’t matter.

Okay, I’ve spelled it out; our world is in the deadly grip of the 1%. So what can we do about it? We must recognize and utilize our own power. Without us to do their work and consume their products the 1% is helpless and their power is broken. That’s it, we must break their power and build alternative sources to fill our needs. That’s what the capitalists did to conquer the feudal age. They built alternatives and made nobles superfluous. Now it is their turn to be replaced since they exploit rather than serve us.

Like I said, at this point we can’t organize groups to take corrective action. They will take out our leaders and come down with deadly force. Look at what happens in the rest of the world. When people in other countries try to organize and throw off the outside yoke of imperialism, drones take out their leaders, their citizens are bombed to hell and we buy their BS that they have taken out “the enemy.”

What can we do to change all of this? As organized groups, not much at this time, because of their deadly force. We must first break their power. We each must take personal responsibility. Start dealing with local folks to fill our needs. Get out of debt and quit borrowing money from their banks and credit cards. Buy from local farmers and merchants, who are there mainly to fill needs and make a living rather than huge profits. Get yourself a small piece of ground or use your backyard to start growing more food. Quit wasting your backyard on grass for appearances. Learn how to preserve food for the off seasons. If you have no need to grow food, do it anyway to learn how and to help others trapped in landlord-owned apartments. What you don’t need, give it away to help others become independent of the big corporations. Food and shelter are the first two basics. If we have these without having to depend on the big corporations, that is the path to freedom. If we work for a corporation that is exploiting others, making killing machines, or polluting our world, try to get away from them as quickly as you can. If we work at making their products to kill others, or destroy our environment we are part of the problem. It doesn’t make any difference how much money we make as a sycophant to them; it is not worth it if we are helping to bring death to life on earth. We really don’t need all this stuff they sucker us into buying with their advertising. If we can get an acre of this good Earth, feed ourselves and start rebuilding the soil, we become independent. If nothing else, use our backyards or sack-bags of dirt to grow vegetables. Treat land as sacred, it is here for all life.

We must demand that the UN has the power to hold war makers and those who abuse others to account. If we can’t make the UN do its duty, we must organize an international People’s Tribunal that will take action to hold war makers and polluters accountable. In the future we must settle our conflicts by law and courts rather than war.

We are better off when we cooperate and share rather than compete and beat. The state does not give life, therefore; the state does not have the right to take life. Let’s discipline ourselves and cut down on the world’s population explosion. Once we have broken the power of the 1%, we must change the system to register all people of legal age to vote regardless of circumstances. We must set up term limits and public financing for elections. Those people and corporations who utilize our public airways shall be required to dedicate 20% of each broadcast timeslot for 30 days prior to elections, as a royalty due the people, to be used by qualified registered candidates.

We shall create a world based on laws that bring justice for all. We shall develop an international power to hold war makers and exploiters to account. We start by taking individual responsibility, withdrawing our support and cease cooperating in their deadly game of destruction for profit. Resources of this earth are here for all life and not just for a few rich grabbers who take more than their share. Why should one person accumulate enough for 1000 lifetimes and 1000 families go hungry? Let’s start thinking about what personal action we can take. It is with our combined personal action that we shall end their power. We must stop allowing them to use people against each other. With life on earth we are all in the same boat, so let’s start bailing, even if we have but a thimble to use.

Inspire Seattle: Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) on Sat, May 7 at 6:30PM

InspireSeattle invites YOU to join us at our Social Forum: Saturday, May 7th at 6:30PM.

Main discussion topic for this evening: Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP): is this Asian trade agreement good or bad for America (and Americans)?

President Obama’s Office of the United States Trade Representative frames the TPP as “INCREASING AMERICAN EXPORTS, SUPPORTING AMERICAN JOBS”. Is this true? At what cost?

Obama announced the United States’ intention to participate in the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) to conclude an ambitious, next-generation, Asia-Pacific trade agreement that “reflects U.S. economic priorities and values”. Obama states this will boost U.S. economic growth and support the creation and retention of high-quality American jobs by increasing exports in a region that includes some of the world’s most robust economies and that represents nearly 40 percent of global GDP. The US is negotiating the TPP with 11 other countries (Australia, Brunei Darussalam, Canada, Chile, Japan, Malaysia, Mexico, New Zealand, Peru, Singapore, and Vietnam). The TPP is the cornerstone of the Obama Administration’s economic policy in the Asia Pacific. As a group, the TPP countries are the largest goods and services export market of the United States. U.S. goods exported to TPP countries totaled $698 billion in 2013, representing 44 percent of total U.S. goods exports.

Clearly this proposed TPP has been a hot topic this election season, with some presidential candidates for it, some against it. (Hillary Clinton has been both for and against it!). On the “against” side, some candidates argue that this deal would mimic the effects of NAFTA by exporting jobs, lowering wages, and leading to greater income inequality. Even more, what has been left out of this conversation is the impact of the TPP on several aspects of our economy and legal system. The TPP increases the length of drug patents, limits our ability to regulate Wall Street, affects copyright laws and the internet, and as will be presented at the meeting, poses a serious threat to our ability to fight climate change. In this 5000 page document, the words “climate change” are not even mentioned. Instead, the deal grants corporations a powerful tool against our ability to fight climate change. This tool — the Investor-State Dispute Settlement system (ISDS) — threatens our sovereignty and our climate by allowing foreign corporations to demand damages in foreign trade tribunals over laws designed to protect the public and our environment.

Clearly trade is critical for the US in our global economy. This discussion is to evaluate the pros and cons of the TPP and its likely impact on Americans, and the planet.

Please join us for this important discussion!

Guest Speaker: Selden Prentice

Selden Prentice is a retired lawyer and college instructor who now volunteers full-time with the climate change group, 350Seattle. She leads the trade policy workgroup which is currently focused on the proposed Trans Pacific Partnership.

About InspireSeattle

InspireSeattle is a progressive network of Seattle-area people sharing ideas and supporting action. InspireSeattle’s vision is to create connection throughout our community and better community through activism. InspireSeattle’s mission is to provide a fun, supportive gathering for people who care deeply about our community, our country and our planet. We embrace progressive policies that improve our society and protect our environment. We discuss current issues, share ideas and activism efforts while striving to inspire additional action. Subscribe (or unsubscribe) to InspireSeattle by visiting www.inspireseattle.org contact.html.

When: May 7th at 6:30PM. Please try to be on time!!!

Where: Carrie Bogner’s place, 1120 24th Ave E, Seattle, WA 98112. Home # is 206-280-4214.

Directions: (easy to find!) Click here for a map: http://goo.gl/maps/IIHhE

From 520, Eastbound: Take the Lake Washington Exit, go right at the light on to E. Montlake which quickly turns into 24th Ave E. Go up the hill then go left onto Highland Dr. The entrance to the house is in the alley between 24th and 25th, but please park on Highland Dr or on 25th Ave. It is the 2nd house on the west side of the alley (from Highland Dr) and has a 3 car garage. Front door is on the south side of the house. Look for signs at the alley entrance!

From 520, Westbound: Take the Lake Washington Exit, go right at the stop sign, then go left at the light on to E. Montlake which quickly turns into 24th Ave E. Go up the hill then go left onto Highland Dr. The entrance to the house is in the alley between 24th and 25th, but please park on Highland Dr or on 25th Ave. It is the 2nd house on the west side of the alley (from Highland Dr) and has a 3 car garage. Front door is on the south side of the house. Look for signs at the alley entrance! place

Format

It’s a potluck: so please help out and bring something to eat and to drink!

6:30 to 7:45: Social time! Eat, drink, relax, and catch up with some other local progressives

Formal discussion and guest speakers, 7:45 to 9:30

Other Announcements – got any?

Rules of Engagement!

1. So that everyone has a chance to participate, please keep your comments short

2. Raise one’s hand to ask a question in lieu of shouting out

3. Respect the points of views of others

4. No arguing of politics during the formal discussion – save that for afterwards!

The revolution will not be pleasant

On facebook some supporters of the Green Party put up a meme image suggesting that only Jill Stein would end our militaristic foreign policy. Here’s the image:

Only the Green Party will end war

I replied:

Aren’t Bernie and Rand much less hawkish than the others? Anyway, the Green Party hasn’t a snowball’s chance in hell of making much of a difference, much less winning. Bernie Sanders might actually win the Presidency! And the movement he created may reinvigorate democracy. Why is it that angry conservatives take over the GOP but angry progressives typically flee the Democratic Party (with their tails between their legs)?

With all its problems, the Democratic Party is still easier to reform than the country in general. In WA State especially (where I live), if the thousands of Bernie supporters who showed up at the caucuses showed up regularly to  Legislative District meetings we could make real progress and we can send the corporate Dems packing.

The leftist guy responded, “Existing Democratic Party people make it pretty unpleasant to show up to meetings, so they won’t.” That was a perfect opening for this:

I agree it’s unpleasant. But, sorry! The revolution will not be pleasant. If you can’t handle some unpleasant corporate Dems you might as well give up!

The Legislative District caucuses on Sunday were unpleasant: tedious and long. One caucus (the 27thLD) started at 1PM and finished at 12:45 AM in the parking lot,, after getting kicked out of the school! Perhaps the unpleasantness of Democratic Party meetings is a feature meant to discourage participation. But, seriously, politics is inherently unpleasant often.

Another gripe (while I’m on this rant):  leftists need to learn how to get along and cooperate! Too many leftists are allergic to any sort of hierarchy or cooperation that requires agreeing to majority rule. That’s one reason why the Occupy Movement wasn’t as successful as it could have been:  the Occupiers were all into mic checks and unanimity. Talk about unpleasant process!  (Another reason the Occupy Movement was less successful than it could have been is that the police ruthlessly suppressed it.)  The Tea Party on the right took over the GOP and seated scores of lawmakers in Congress.  Can leftists/progressives organize to take over the Democratic Party? Or are they too averse to unpleasant things like voting and debates and meetings and majority rule?

Millions of young, motivated progressives are participating in Democratic Party primaries, caucuses and meetings, thanks to the leadership of Bernie Sanders.  But many hard-core leftists (Socialists and Anarchists) still insist on fleeing from the Democratic Party. What are they afraid of?  Dealing with unpleasant corporate Democrats?  A little hierarchy?

Supporting the Solar Incentive Bill HB2346 in Senate

The Solar Extension bill HB 2346 is alive and is now in the Senate.  It supports the Solar industry in Washington state by helping to make an installation more affordable up front.

The Bill will have a committee (Senate Energy, Environment and solar-panels-on-roof-3Telecommunications Committee)  hearing on Wednesday, February 24.  To get out of this committee and on to Ways and Means then Senate floor, we need to stress the jobs and good for the economy message.  Please contact your state senator and let them know you support the Solar Extension bill as it encourages this industry and will help create new jobs in Washington state.  You can call your senator/reps at  1-800-562-6000 and ask them to support HB2346.  You can also email by looking them up here:  http://app.leg.wa.gov/DistrictFinder/.

This weekend many reps and Senators are having Town Hall Discussions.  This is another great place to ask for support for great legislation such as HB2346.  The jobs and economy message will resonate with Senators more than an environmental message.  The bill passed the house with bipartisan support, so with the right encouragement there is a good chance it will also pass the senate.

Thank you for considering this action.  Please spread the word, constituent voices are very influential!

sHellNo Nighttime Luminary Flotilla on World Environment Day

Join us this Friday, June 5th, on World Environment Day for an eveningof art-making, inspiration, music, wise words, and creating a communitythat’s acting in harmony with our shared values and visions of betterway forward.

Rent a Kayak to join the Luminous Flotilla
culminating withprocession to the rig and light action! (you can enjoy music beginningat 6pm from the water or on land). Join the Luminary Flotilla

 

  • Paddle with lanterns from 9-10pm
  • On-the-water Light Action near the rig 10-11:30pm

 

Boaters, please email Capt Marnie. Lantern-makers and artists, please email Denise.

(more info on Luminary Flotilla below)


We need kayaks!
Ask everyone you know. Help us sniff out spare kayaksthroughout Seattle and beyond. Click HERE to offer to Loan Kayaks!

We are looking for loaners for the month of June, beginning IMMEDIATELY. We have more Kayaktivists than there are kayaksfor them to use. The success of the Rapid Response Network and ourability to defend the Arctic from Shell’s destructive drilling may hingeupon your assistance locating and coordinating boats to loan us.

We are interested in kayaks for Kayaktivists considering engagement inboth non-arrestable and elevated risk of arrest actions.

Click HERE to offer to Loan Kayaks!

Join the Flotilla Raft up with kayaktivistsFinal Kayaktivist Trainings – Shell could attempt toleave for the Arctic as early as June 10th. Join us and tell all yourfriends to attend these final trainings!

Last Saturday we were joined by participants from Barcelona, Liverpool,London, Canada and people from throughout the Salish Sea.

Stay tuned for more info about the rapid response efforts. . .


Luminary (ˈlo͞oməˌnerē/)- noun

  1. a person who inspires or influences others.
  2. a celestial body, as the sun or moon.
  3. a body, object, etc., that gives light.

Inspire others to join the climate justice movement! Unite with fellowKayaktivists to share your inner light, bask in the moonlight on thewater, and shine a light of truth on Shell’s depraved plans to drill theArctic.

CLICK HERE to RENT a KAYAK for the sHellNO! Luminary Flotilla

Join the Luminary Flotilla!

We are reclaiming the territory of our imaginations and aspirations,creating a Solutionary Culture of resistance and possibility.

Celebrate our collective creative force with this luminous flotilla andvigil for the Earth! Local artists from throughout the region will bedisplaying their magical light works. The event will open with music andhands-on arts projects to “hold the light” for what is threatened byArctic drilling and climate change. Then we paddle to the Polar Pioneer.

Reserve a spot in a kayak and please pay in advance. We are working withAlki Kayak Tours to provide a Pay-What-You-Can Sliding scale opportunity(it costs us $20-30 per person).

Please finish payment after you RSVP. If you need to find it again visitBackbone’s Kayak Training Payment Portal. Thank you in advance!

Once you register we’ll send you some more info, but plan to wearquick-drying clothing like what you might wear to yoga or hiking, aswell as something warm and a windbreaker (Just about anything butcotton).

Make a meaningful contribution TODAY!
If you think this is worthwhile work, we invite you to support our ability to keep doing it. Thanks for sharing in our enthusiasm!


Donate online HERE or send checks to PO BOX 278, Vashon, WA 98070

Backbone Campaign should work on economic justice in addition to climate justice

I commend and support the Backbone Campaign’s successful activism concerning Shell’s plan to drill in the arctic.  They are expert at getting media coverage.

But there are many battles to fight, and I wish Backbone would direct their activism towards economic justice. In particular, I want Backbone to expose the outrageously regressive tax system in Washington State. Republicans need to feel the heat for their opposition to a capital gains tax and to adequate funding of education and social services. Had Backbone targeted Andy Hill last year, maybe Matt Eisenhower could have won.  (Hill won with under 53% of the votes.)

Of course, progressives must be willing to financially underwrite such activism. (I am a donor.)

It’s mostly Republicans who are harming progressive causes, especially in the state senate.  But Dems too have sold out. Governor Inslee, for example, needs to feel the heat for having spearheaded the $8.7 billion giveaway to Boeing.

One other thing:  conservatives ridiculed the anti-Shell protesters for using kayaks made from petroleum products and for traveling to the protest via automobiles that consume fossil fuels.  Defenders of the protesters have pointed out that there’s little alternative and that arctic drilling would be destructive not just by releasing carbon into the atmosphere but also by threatening the fragile arctic ecosystem.

While I strongly oppose arctic drilling, I think the campaign to limit the supply of oil is doomed to fail unless we can control the demand and encourage alternatives.  An excellent analogy is the failed War on Drugs.  Despite decades of efforts, hundreds of billions dollars spent, and millions of people imprisoned and killed, illegal drug use continues.  When there is demand, there will be supply.

We are addicted to oil and coal.  We must encourage alternatives (solar, wind, geothermal, conservation, smaller cars, and public transportation,  for example). A carbon tax or a cap-and-trade system would reduce demand.  Just restricting supply is insufficient.

Successful Climate Justice Activism

Look what we have accomplished together! (see the media roundup below)
Paddle In Seattle
Together we were:

Paddle in Seattle Stranger CoverLed by the beauty and spirit of the moment,

Emboldened by the drums and wise words of the Duwamish and Native Canoe families and the voices of those on the front-lines of the climate crisis,

D
riven by a moral obligation to take principled and bold action in service of a habitable planet and younger generations.

300+ people (and countless others on land) took to the water, paddling straight to Shell’s Arctic destroyer to demand climate justice.

It is in these moments that we solidify the courage to act upon our convictions. The Paddle In Seattle has seized headlines across the world and has inspired others to join the movements for climate justice.

Thank you for sharing in our vision and for striving to manifest it. Collectively we have done something truly beautiful and powerful.

Kayaktivists confront artic destructionNow, we must use this momentum and spotlight to push onward.

Right now, we are resuming kayaktivist trainings and organizing a rapid response network for when Shell dares to leave for the Arctic. We’re also connecting the solar powered People’s Platform with upcoming night-time paddle actions.

 

 

Media Round-Up:

Chief Seattle is Watching banner at Jack Block with Native      Canoes by Alex GarlandThe news from the weekend made national and global headlines in addition to completely saturating Seattle media (best- KOMO 4 TV, KIRO 7 TV, Q13 Fox TV, Stranger, Seattle PI, West Seattle Herald) This has completely changed the conversation around Arctic drilling and rocketed it to being a top national and even international issue. Even Obama found himself extolling the virtues of protecting the Arctic at a USCG Academy commencement address.

Here are a few highlights: on Saturday, the protest was #3 on BBC World News (right beneath the ISIS raid and Morsi’s death sentence, to give you perspective). The Guardian went wild with coverage as well (here, here, here, and here) and it even reached Australia!

The Associated Press story was picked up in nearly every major paper across the country from Atlanta to Minneapolis to Dallas and on ABC and Yahoo news.

The coverage from the NBC affiliate, King 5 TV, was picked up nationally.

The photos were particularly well-traveled with even Leonardo Dicaprio posting the aerial kayak photos on his Instagram.
Paddle In Seattle
Here is a roundup of the photos from Grist.

The speeches all came from native and impacted people telling us powerful truths. In fact, after traveling to Seattle from the North Slope, Mae Hank and Faith Gemmill-Fredson – founder and executive director of the grassroots indigenous network REDOIL- confronted Shell at the AGM meeting in London. Faith spoke directly to Shell shareholders saying “The moral and financial burden of the irresponsible decision to drill in the Arctic is too risky to consider.”

Paddle In SeattleArctic drilling dominated the coverage of the meeting, casting serious investor doubt on the project.

Earlier in the week, Kayaktivists were live on MSNBC’s Chris Hayes, followed by an amazing segment on Rachel Maddow during which she spent several minutes reading out-loud the riveting and terrifying piece “The Wreck of the Kulluk.”

The Monday following the actions, there was even more national coverage. Here are just a few of the highlights: USA Today, NPR, Slate.

Lastly, #ShellNo and “Arctic drilling” were trending on Twitter and Facebook, respectively!

Floating Banner Defend The Arctic Climate Justice Now

New Kayaktivism Training Dates:

 

 

WE NEED YOUR SUPPORT!

Donate online HERE or send checks to PO BOX 278, Vashon, WA 98070