Thursday, January 28, 2010

R.I.P. Howard Zinn, 1922-2010

We lost a great activist and educator today.
Howard Zinn passed away after having lived a very full life, and after sharing extremely important thoughts on the telling of history.
Howard's work goes well beyond being a provocative professor at Boston University. Every visitor to this site should click the following link and spend as much time on his site as you can, http://
Picking up a book or two won't hurt either...
I'm most aware of Howard's teaching's from his monumental book, A People's History of the United States: 1492-Present. Howard's basic premise is that history has been written by those with and in positions of power. Makes sense, doesn't it? I don't recall ever being taught that the US was founded on the genocide of Indigenous people, and that the US economy was built by the forced labor of African slaves. I was taught there were cowboys and Indians, and slavery was a "backwards" time in the US.
Howard's view, which to me resonates the deepest, is to tell the story from the bottom -up, as opposed to the top-down. A radical departure from common means of telling history, crafting policy, etc. this simple yet completely radical idea can and should be put into action in as many diverse ways as possible, so that standpoint and perspectives are not continually as skewed as they have been for hundreds (or thousands) of years.
Just think about it: what if the perspective of someone without health care for their family was able to dictate policy as opposed to a politician that has more coverage then they could ever factually use? Therein lies the message that perspectives, narratives, and stories are all very different when told from diverse perspectives; a slave story will be different from a slave owners story, a Native Americans story will be different from a white settlers, and an investment banker/hedge funder/insurance salesman/wall-street executive's story will be very different from a working class family's story. A houselesss persons story will be very different from one who has never gone without food and shelter for a night.
These are some of the contributions Howard Zinn made-to help us think about others perspectives as opposed to just our own. Worthy thoughts and beliefs to continue to learn from and absorb. Thanks for your lessons Howard, messages that promote a world of peace, justice, healing and sustainability.

Monday, January 18, 2010

The Greatest Holiday for Justice in the US

Everyday should be one where the thoughts, actions, and beliefs of the Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. are celebrated far and wide. There are numerous sites out there celebrating the good Dr. on this day, and let us reflect on one of his many important quotes:
"Life's most persistent and urgent question is, what are you doing for others?"
I think we should all mediate on this one quote, bring its message with us on our daily paths traveled in life, and let the energy of the statement stick with us in a way that we honor the answer.
On this day, let us also not forget the many continued struggles around the globe for Holistic Sustainability. Specifically speaking towards Haiti, think about how you can lend some form of support, no matter how large or small, to ongoing relief efforts.
Here's one link that I know is a righteous source if anyone would like to directly donate financial support, or look into how organizations are helping the Haitian people recover from this enormous natural disaster

Monday, January 11, 2010

Hope for the New Year

There has been a lot that has happened in the last month. My sincere apologies for not posting during this time, but to be blunt, I've been all over the place. It's always worthy to check in with the latest news from, or look at my past posts on where else to go for up-to-date information on promoting peace, justice and sustainability.

As 2009 waxed its way into 2010, all I could think about was Hope. Hope in the sense of remembering to never let all the suffering, brutality, and socially constructed oppressions or natural occurring hazards have such an affect on you that you cease to desire for a sustainable world. I've found, as I have said before, once one is turned toward the goal of wanting to do whatever they can to promote Holistic Sustainability, the unimaginable yet very real impacts people, all species and the Earth face everyday is sincerely daunting. But Hope. Hope not in the sense of talking about it, but trying to enact it in any way one can is paramount. That's my continued message for now, moving us from 2009 into 2010.

Rather than reflect on the failures and victories of 2009, I'd rather just keep going from where we are at present, although I'll build off a few stories to get us to what today's cover picture represents.

For the Earth, the non-binding agreement that came as a result of the meeting in Copenhagen were a surprise. Wait a minute, of course it wasn't, but that does not mean that the pressure put on by activists all over the world can be forgotten. Instead continuing to work towards binding agreements so actual justice and sustainability can be fostered is essential. Here's a quick link from Indian Country,, but of course there are countless available resources on the web about what went down and how to stay involved by continuing the pressure on rich countries to take accountability for what human induced impacts are stressing the Earth's ecosystem. And yes, if you heard that at some point that rich countries would like to simply pay poorer countries to lessen their global warming footprint you're right. But it's up to us to make sure accountability is understood by rich, industrialized, "first-world" countries understanding that it's their model that has led to where things are economically, socially, politically, and environmentally, and to never forget that there would be no "problems" from "underdeveloped" countries if the industrialized nations were in fact sustainable for a holistic standpoint.

Also check out these stories for an idea of where activists were at in Copenhagen:

Another thing to add that follows suit from the Climate Change talks in Europe is the continued trouble wind farms are having from Cape Cod, Massachusetts to Ontario, Canada, and on with the "problem" of aesthetics. One front that must be engaged with is how and when those who advocate for clean renewable energy are put off by the look of wind turbines will take a harder look at themselves for letting coal supply their electricity because emissions are invisible to the naked eye, yet wind farms are too ugly for implementation.

The then there's the settlement that took place regarding owed money the US should have paid Tribal people for many years. A story is here,, and there are many more related. The summary is the US has decided to pay Tribes a ridiculously small portion of what their owed as a gesture of just politics. A pat on the back from the colonizers, and business as usual at the end of the decade after court proceedings for several unnecessary years.

Please take a look at Friends of the Earth when you get a chance,

Regarding today's picture, please check out, give it a read, digest it, and share what you think with the world. It's an idea where the merits of Holistic Sustainability come together, and imagine if the ideals set forth were to come true. What would it take? Does it look as good as it sounds or is this not even what we're looking for in the struggle to bring about peace, justice and sustainability? You decide.

Here's the beginning to the message you can read from the link above:


First let me say: I want you to know that I'm the man with the vision but an amateur writer about the very important Movement and worldwide public conversation that I'm trying to inspire humanity to come together on and create. Please keep that clearly in mind. Why? Because it is so important for you to only focus on my ideas, not on my weak writing skills about them, since my vision for humanity, which I write about in very plain and simple language that everyone can easily understand, can absolutely solve almost ALL of the major problems in the world in so many different ways.


Help us build this very important and very strategic worldwide Movement -- a Movement to create the most important worldwide discussion in all of humanity's history, one that will empower our suffering humanity, worldwide, to finally be able to end poverty and unemployment worldwide, make every single nation and territory in the world prosperous, protect and clean up the environment, solve the energy crisis, provide health care and education to everyone in every nation, build and always properly maintain the needed infrastructure in every nation, provide all of the different kinds of necessary public transportation in every nation, end taxation for every person and every large and small business in every nation, and so much more. It's all about how to very lovingly, morally, ethically, skillfully, and easily change the money system throughout the whole world so that it finally works absolutely well for all of humanity, all of the time.

Welcome to 2010. Let's keep the fire burning to do what we can, always, to promote peace, justice and sustainability, and make this a year with more steps in the respect-centered direction. Remember, if it's livable in totality, it can be sustainable. And to do only what you can, with what you have, and hope to improve and grow as you go is an ultimate goal that will serve the whole Earth and every living species in a love centered, respect-filled way.