Localism

The Currency of Localism

 

From Resilience

Two or three times a year, I drive back and forth between London and Valencia – a family responsibility that is no less pleasurable for being tiring.  Whenever possible on these three-day journeys I try to spend at least one night at a remote inn I chanced upon some time ago in rural France. Perched on a hilltop in the mountainous  Auvergne region, the inn offers spectacular views of the landscape, plus hosts who are unusual not just for the warmth of their welcome but also for their 100 per cent organic cuisine and their dedication to environmental conservation.  Minimising waste and non-renewable sources of energy, and maximising the use of local produce are their operational guidelines.

Vegetables come fresh from the garden, meat and cheese from nearby farms, wild mushrooms from adjacent meadows. Breakfast includes home-made yoghurt, and bread baked at dawn by the hostess using wheat from the valley below. The inn is small – a work in progress emerging slowly from what was, a few years ago, a ramshackle assembly of ruined farm buildings. Guests are never more numerous than can fit comfortably round the rustic dining table in the main house, and since the inn lies at the end of a steep, narrow road and requires persistence to find, these often turn out to have an exploratory turn of mind and to be interesting conversationalists – as indeed are the hosts.  I have dined there in the company of university professors, journalists, musicians, architects, archeologists and even a couple of aid workers on leave from French West Africa.

Localism in the Age of Trump…

 

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From Richard Heinberg

2016 will be remembered as the year Donald Trump—a wealthy, narcissistic political novice with a strong authoritarian bent—was elected president of the United States after campaigning against economic globalization. The events are fresh enough in many people’s minds that feelings are still raw and the implications are both unclear and, for many, terrifying. For those who have spent years, in some cases decades, denouncing globalization and seeking to build a localist alternative, this is surely a vexing and confusing moment.

When the World Trade Organization’s ministerial conference in 1999 erupted into “the Battle of Seattle,” demonstrators voiced arguments that might resonate with the average Trump voter. They asserted that, for the United States, globalization was resulting in the offshoring of manufacturing that would otherwise have occurred domestically; that while American consumers were gaining access to cheaper consumer products, the hourly wages of workers were stagnating or falling in real terms due to competition with foreign labor; and that the investor class was benefitting significantly while the wage class was losing ground. All of these points were more recently driven home, to great effect, by The Donald.

However, the localist critique of globalization went much further than anything Trump himself has articulated. Anti-globalization activists decried a “race to the bottom” in environmental protections with each new trade deal, as well as the global loss of thousands of indigenous languages and locally-adapted forms of architecture, art, agriculture, and music in favor of a uniform global commercial culture dominated by corporate advertising and centralized industrial production methods. Further, teach-ins organized by International Forum on Globalization (IFG) beginning in the 1990s; books by the movement’s intellectual leaders (John Cavanagh’s and Jerry Mander’s Alternatives to Economic Globalization; Kirkpatrick Sale’s Dwellers in the Land and Human Scale; Michael Shuman’s Small-Mart Revolution and The Local Economy Solution; Helena Norberg Hodge’s Ancient Futures); and thousands of on-the-ground locally rooted cooperative efforts scattered worldwide promoted a vision of a green, sustainable, equitable bioregionalism.

Rosalind Peterson: Geoengineering — Destroying the Atmosphere


From ROSALIND PETERSON
Redwood Valley

Please visit…
Agriculture Defense Coalition
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“Climate Remediation” = Geoengineering – Global Geoengineering Governance: Currently the U.S. Government, our military, NASA, NOAA (other U.S. agencies), any city, county, state, private indivduals, corporations, foreign governments, and foreign corporations, can initiate any type of geo-engineering experiments without public knowledge, consent, government restrictions or public debate.

Rosalind Peterson is California President and Co-Founder of the Agriculture Defense Coalition (ADC). The ADC was formed in 2006, to protect agricultural from a wide variety of experimental weather and atmospheric testing programs.

Ms. Peterson also founded California Skywatch in 2002, when she began researching atmospheric testing and weather modification programs. The two websites are separate entities but are linked together by issues listed alphabetically in the “Categories” section.

Ms. Peterson was a Keynote Speaker at the 60th Annual DPI/NGO Conference on

Don Sanderson: Modern Civilization vs. Climate Change


From DON SANDERSON
Hopland

Maybe not ninety nine percent, but most of us can’t help but support those demonstrating on Wall Street and elsewhere around the world. Never before has humankind seen greed so out of control. Copious availability of fossil fuels has loosened energy restraints and democratic movements have loosened social constraints. I’ve argued elsewhere that the OWS movement is likely to fail because of our modern civilization’s dependence upon fossil fuels and other natural resources that become economically available thanks to fossil fuels. These resources are only sufficiently cheap if they are harvested and utilized under vast economies of scale, which requires capital and naturally results in wealth accumulation. I conclude that OWS should be targeting the root of our problems, our lifestyles, if it has any hopes of being successful. If we insist in living in a fossil fuel based economy, we can expect to pay. But inequality and wealth accumulation aren’t the only consequences, nor even the major ones; fossil fuel usage-caused global warming is.

Tamara Wilder: Hands-On Friction Firemaking Class Launches Occupy Hendy Woods Friday 11/11/11


From TAMARA WILDER
Paleotechnics
Boonville

Help launch this weekend protest at Hendy Woods State Park, Philo, November 11th, 2011, 5:15ish PM Occupation runs Friday, November 11 at 3:00pm – Sunday, November 13 at 2:00pm

We refuse to sit back and watch OUR park close in June 2012 when the fiscal year ends. We, as a local community, are dedicated to finding ways to protect and preserve the park’s natural beauty for generations to come, which is why we are planning to occupy it for a weekend. We hope to raise awareness in our own community and let the state know that we care about it too much to let it go.

See the event page for more information: http://www.facebook.com/event.php?eid=176753739080392

Join the conversation: http://www.facebook.com/groups/245048052210502/
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Will Parrish: The Evolution Of Occupy Santa Rosa


From WILL PARRISH
Laytonville

“We are reclaiming those same spaces of public practice that have been commodified, privatized and locked into the hands of faceless bureaucracy, real estate portfolios, and police ‘protection’. Hold on to these spaces, nurture them, and let the boundaries of your occupations grow. After all, who built these parks, these plazas, these buildings? Whose labor made them real and livable? Why should it seem so natural that they should be withheld from us, policed and disciplined? Reclaiming these spaces and managing them justly and collectively is proof enough of our legitimacy.”  — Egyptian Tahrir Square protesters, statement of solidarity with Occupy Wall Street movement, October 2011

A small but promising model for a better world has sprung to life on the previously sterile and generic expanse of lawns at 1st St. and Santa Rosa Ave., location of Santa Rosa City Hall, where participants in the growing Occupy Santa Rosa demonstration have assembled in a protest camp for more than two weeks. It is part of the larger Occupy Wall St. movement, which consists of hundreds of encampments in cities from San Francisco to New York to London. The tactic of occupying physical space to press for demands from those in power was popularized on a global basis by the Egyptian Tahrir Square demonstrators and other protesters throughout western Asia and northern Africa this past spring.

Occupations of public space in New York City’s financial district first began in August, as a means of challenging the corporate greed and democratic unaccountability that characterize the dominant political and financial institutions in the US and also throughout most of the world. While this country’s political punditry has persistently criticized the movement on grounds that it lacks clear goals, much less a coherent policy platform, it’s a laughable criticism