Archive for the ‘US Politics’ Category

3P-068 12 Local Ordinances for Food Security

In this episode we describe 12 local ordinances that towns could use to protect food production and community sovereignty. These include distinguishing between agribusiness and smallholder farms, enabling sustainable student swaps, authorizing Backyard Farmer and Kitchen Baker Markets, allowing free trade between neighbors, and networking with other towns reclaiming their producer rights. First among these pioneering towns is Sedgwick, Maine, whose Local Food and Community Self-Governance Ordinance we discuss, including its revolutionary stance on secession.

We quote from Joel Salatin’s “Everything I Want to Do is Illegal,” and from Richard Holtz in “An Extra Pair of Hands” from the Half Moon Bay Patch. The aging of the farm population is discussed, and the inability of young farmers to make a living with the onerous regulations and exorbitant cost of land. We also elucidate ag and oil subsidies, and look at their effect on farmers both in this country and others.

Poems:

  • “Praise Song” by Barbara Crooker
  • “Groundhog Day” by Lynn Ungar
  • “Millennium Blessing” by Stephen Levine

Songs and/or Music Videos:

  • “Remaining Light” by God is an Astronaut
  • “Weather and Water” by Jedd Hughes
  • “We Can’t Make It Here” by James McMurtry

Included is an archive of the Sedgwick Local Food Ordinance and the powerpoint slides of the 12 Local Ordinances for Food Security, which I presented at Transition Santa Cruz’s “potluck with a purpose.” We also introduce the Urban Garden Share project of the Santa Cruz Local Food Working Group.

3P-067 Rhetorical Devisives or Two Half-Truths Don’t Make a Whole

In Rhetorical Devisives we demonstrate the importance of the Trivium education from ancient Greece: grammar, logic, and rhetoric, to learn how to think rather than what to think. Julian Assange is given as an example of someone who uses classical techniques to identify and rebut Ad Hominem and Lunatic Fringe attacks. We define blood libel from James Carroll’s book on anti-Semiticism in the Church, Constantine’s Sword, which shows how Sarah Palin twisted it into an opposite meaning.

We play an excerpt of Peace Revolution’s first podcast from the Trivium Education website. “Liberal” anti-conspiracist Chip Berlet is identified as a master of the fallacious argument. We show how he used Red Herring and Straw Man techniques to discredit investigations into the Federal Reserve, linking the videos “Zeitgeist” and “Loose Change” to the Tucson shooter.  We reference “Conversational Terrorism” on Sleight of Mind techniques that he uses in a 2002 Democracy Now debate with David Ray Griffin, like Weasel Wording, Moving the Goalpost, Heat-Seeking Question, and the Statistical Non Sequiter. We ask whether he’s single-handedly diverted the liberal press from the two most important questions to US citizens: whether our money supply is loaned to us at interest by private bankers, making them the real government, and whether that government killed 3000 of our citizens to instigate a war.

Poems:

  • “Let My Country Awake” by Rabindranath Tagore
  • “Eagle Poem” by Joy Harjo
  • “To the New Year” by W.S. Merwin

Songs and/or Music Videos:

  • Cinematic Orchestra with “Child’s Song” from the Ma Fleur CD
  • Willie Nelson with “Peace Revolution”
  • Laura Gibson with “Where Have All Your Good Words Gone”

Informational Video:

  • Pop-up Fallacies analyzing Greenpeace ad that blames global warming on parents, not corporations.

Thank you to Patrice Caux for the referrals to sources in this episode. Also please view and comment on my first published article at Foreign Policy in Focus! “Peru Trade Deal Unravels

3P-066 Peru and the Free2Raid Agreement plus Bonus Interview

In Peru and the Free2Raid Agreement, we ask whether free trade between countries is really a free-to-raid deal between dictators and corporate investors. We give the history of the 2007 Peru FTA and show how Democrats, labor unions, churches, human rights organizations, and environmental groups were divided and conquered to pass it, and what its effects have been in the North and South.

We describe how Peru’s President Garcia came to power, and his uncanny parallel in the US. An Iowa farmer is quoted using Peru’s earthquake to promote the FTA, and we show how subsidized US corn has undermined food security. Evidence from “information terrorists” in Peru is cited about the economic impact on rural communities and depletion of water in the aquifers. We follow the USAID project of Peruvian asparagus and its impact on agro-export workers there and asparagus farmers in California, Washington, and Minnesota here. This episode ends with a question about whether we should have free trade between neighbors rather than nations, and if these should be called what they are: Subsidized Investor-Corporate Kleptocracy, or SICK.

Poems:

  • New Year Prayer by David Whyte
  • New Year’s Resolution by Philip Appleman

Songs and/or Music Videos

  • Improvisation 1 by Ballake Sossoko
  • It Is What It Is by John Trudell and Bad Dog
  • No No Keshagesh (greedy guts) by Buffy Saint Marie

Thank you to David Bayer of Peru and Howard Rosenberg of UC Berkeley for the wealth of resources provided to this show! To listen or view the multimedia transcript, plus cartoons, tables, photos, and footnotes, click here.

My daughter Veronica and I were also interviewed this week on the KZSC program Talkabout with guest host Kevin Spitzer. We discussed the UniverseCity, and the potential to have a network of microversities linked through low-power FM “stations for education.” Veronica talked about Food in the Hood, our bi-weekly neighborhood dinners that raise donations to global charities. Kevin compared Third Paradigm to a fledgling Amy Goodman, and gave insight to the community- and soul-building aspect of these endeavors. A new class in Glocal Economics was announced, and experiences in turkey-plucking were shared. If you’d like to hear this lively conversation, it’s archived here at radio4all.

3P-061 Wossamotta U

Wossamotta U was the alma mater of Bullwinkle, an early teacher of the social innuendo. This episode examines the university as the self-perpetuating goal of education. We review the NY Times article “Placing the Blame as Students Are Mired in Debt,” the Washington Examiner article, “Higher Education’s Bubble is About to Burst,” and the eye-opening new book by Anya Kamenetz, DIY U. From her book, we cite statistics on drop-out rates, question the cost/benefit ratio, and take a jaundiced look at college from “The Economics of Education and the Education of an Economist.”

But from the last episode, we reconsider our conclusions from a Pew Center survey showing Republicans are happier than Democrats. And we ask, who funds the Pew Center anyway? We hypothesize that it’s the same group that’s grooming Presidential candidates, as John Perkins reveals they do for economic hit men. We end with a new educational paradigm, that compares apples to apples to measure the success of schooling.

Poems:

  • “When the Shoe Fits” by Chuang Tsu
  • “Straight Talk from Fox” by Mary Oliver

Songs and/or Music Videos

  • “A Day Without Rain” and “Tempus Vernum” by Enya
  • “Same Old, Same Old” by Chumbawumba
  • “Someday” by Brett Dennen

Excerpt

  • Question related to California’s Budget Crisis and Cabrillo College

To listen or view the multimedia transcript, click here!

3P-060 The Bipolar Bipartisan

The Bipolar Bipartisan looks at bipartisanship as a compromise between two confusions. We examine critical thinking and how it’s been bred out, generation by generation. This leaves us vulnerable to being defeated through our own unexamined contradictions. We also look at that strange hybrid of capitalism and socialism, the consumer democracy. And we explore how Republicans and Democrats differ on a survey of happiness.

We also discuss Obama’s first-strike nuclear option towards Iran as a “spare the nuclear rod and spoil the colony” policy, and quote IPS and Diane Rehm on the topic. We puzzle over the apparent contradiction in the assassination order of the US-born Muslim cleric in Yemen. We compare the capitalist creed cited by pilot Joseph Stack to the socialist creed, both of which Ivan Illich would critique as part of the war on subsistence. We end with Bruce Gagnon and a clip from one of his lectures stating where both Republicans and Democrats agree.

Poems:

  • “Begin” by Rumi
  • “Half-Life” by Stephen Levine
  • “Love Letters” by Ikkyu
  • “Act Serious” by Tukaram

Songs and/or Music Videos:

  • “Up All Night” by The Grails
  • Peter Gabriel’s cover of Paul Simon’s “Boy in the Bubble”
  • Peter Gabriel’s cover of Talking Heads’ “Listening Wind”

Audio Clip and Chart

  • Ken Dowst’s New World Notes, “Bruce Gagnon on Endless War and the Economy”
  • Pew Research Center’s “Life Priorities by Party”

To listen or view the multimedia transcript, click here!

3P-057 The Many Faces of Palestine

Faces of Palestine: Reviews the film “Occupied Minds” about Palestinian and Israeli journalist-friends who interview Zionist settlers, militant Palestinians, Israeli soldiers, Palestinian farmers, and an Israeli surgeon blinded by a suicide bomber. Reads poems by Mahmoud Darwish, Ibrahim Nasrallah and Hiyam Noir. Discusses the censorship of Nasrallah and quotes Darwish on telling the Trojans’ story. Cites from Noir’s blogs Palestine Free Voice and Poetry4Palestine. Discusses an article by Jonathan Cook called “Israeli Firms Profit from Holocaust” and one by Keith Harmon Snow called “Israel and the Ongoing Holocaust in Congo.” Also quotes Howard Zinn from “The Optimism of Uncertainty” and praises a radio show ala Zinn called “History Counts” by Ken MacDermottRoe. Ends with Face2Face, a project that made giant side-by-side photos of Israelis and Palestinians making goofy faces, and posted them on both sides of the wall.

Songs and/or Music Videos:

  • Djivan Gasparyan, “I Have Planted an Orchard in Yerevan”
  • Dougie MacLean, “Turning Away”
  • Makana, “Mars Declares”

Poems:

  • “I Am There” by Mahmoud Darwish
  • “A Beautiful Morning” by Ibrahim Nasrallah
  • “In the Toxic Garden” by Hiyam Noir

Informational Videos:

  • “Assault on the Liberty,” part 3/3 from History Counts
  • “Different Game E.P.K.” from Makana

To view the transcript or listen to the show click here. Thanks!

3P-056 Faith & Quakes, or Don’t Blame God for Haiti

Faith & Quakes: Examines the question of theodicy that has puzzled philosophers from Plato to Barbara Ehrenreich: if God is all-good and all-powerful, how can evil exist? Gives a brief history, including St. Iranaeus, St. Augustine, and Alfred Whitehead, and proposes a new answer to “Are people born wicked, or do they have wickedness thrust upon them?”

Demonstrates why the catastrophe in Haiti is an effect of empire, not God. Compares the US military invasion, ala Katrina, to the responses of Iceland, France, Italy, Nicaragua, Cuba, Venezuela, Argentina, Brazil, Senegal,
and Palestine. Presents Haiti’s history in opposing colonialism and the ways they’ve paid for this “deal with the devil” – crushing embargoes, onerous debts, brutal dictatorships, and free-market famines. Suggests that Papa Bush and Baby Bush have more to do with Haiti’s tragedy than God.

Poem:

  • “Celestial Music” by Louise Gluck

Songs and/or Music Videos:

  • “Because It’s There” by Michael Hedges
  • “Freewill” by Rush
  • “The Saints Are Coming” by U2 and Green Day

Informational Videos

  • “The Problem of Evil: A Challenge to God’s Existence?” by A2

To veiw the multimedia transcript and audio player, click here. Note to subscribers: we apologize for a couple of extra posts recently. We added the blog to a number of directories, which required verification codes. Also, my computer’s been taken over by a poltergeist, so email may be sporadic while it’s being exorcised. Thanks!

3P-055 AIDS & Bioterrorism plus Interview with Ruthann Richter

AIDS & Bioterrorism: Presents a book called “Face to Face: Children of the AIDS Crisis in Africa” and interviews the author, Ruthann Richter. Comments on the documentary “Angels in the Dust” about a South African AIDS children’s village.  Investigates how Charity Navigator rates nonprofits by the size of their bank accounts and the aggressiveness of their fundraising. Also presents the history and evidence indicating that AIDS was developed as a weapon of bioterrorism against homosexuals and non-whites to reduce their population. Quotes the following sources on the DoD development of AIDS: Time Magazine, 1946, House appropriations hearing, 1969, World Health Organization, 1972, New Delhi Patriot, 1984, London Times, 1987, a DoD flowchart for the US Special Virus (1962-1978) discovered in 1999, Chief of Staff Anthony Traficanti, 2002, and Dr. Boyd Graves, current. Quotes from “Designer Diseases: AIDS as Biological and Psychological Warfare” by Waves Forrest.

Poems:

  • “Finding What You Didn’t Lose” by John Fox
  • “Waiting in Line” by Nick Penna
  • “The Winter of Listening” by David Whyte

Songs and/or Music Videos:

  • Dead Can Dance with “Song of the Stars” 
  • “Will I?” from the Broadway musical, Rent
  •  TVTV$ with “AIDS is a Four-Letter Word”

Informational Videos:

  • Director’s trailer from “Angels in the Dust”

Audio Bonus:

  • Inspiring interview with Ruthann Richter about grandmothers in Kenya and nonprofits in Santa Cruz raising up the lost generation of AIDS orphans.

3P-052 Writing the Wrongs and Other Tails

Writing the Wrongs: Closes out the first year of Third Paradigm by adding a retrospective of (mostly) unpublished writings by Tereza Coraggio to the website. A collection of sixteen poems is called Becoming Yeast: Poems of Transformation. Nine essays on the apocryphal gospel of Philip are called Revolutionary Mystics and How to Become One. Also includes responses to Jeffrey Sachs and to Peter Singer, and proof that Jesus was the code name for an imperialist Roman spy. Comments on Obama’s pre-conviction of Khalid Sheikh Mohammed in the media. Suggests a trial for the “masterminds” of the controlled demolition on 9-11.

Poems:

  • Tereza Coraggio, “Celestial Effervescence”
  • Tereza Coraggio, “The Holy Dark”
  • Joy Harjo, “Morning Prayers”
  • Tereza Coraggio, “Thoughts on the Afterlife,” dedicated to Isa Dempsey

Songs and/or Music Videos

  • Kaki King, “Air and Kilometers”
  • Robbie Robertson, “Cherokee Morning Song”
  • Michael Franti and Spearhead, “Hey World” (Remote Control Version)

Informational Videos

  • “Cherokee Morning Song” with old and new photographs of North American natives

3P-048 Apropos of Everything: Amy Goodman

Apropos of Everything: Reviews the “coming of age” of Democracy Now from their book, The Exceptions to the Rulers. Examines how one person’s journalist-with-integrity is another person’s hostile crank. Discusses Christian Parenti’s response, called “Free the Truth,” to Kevin Bales, founder of Free the Slaves, who claimed that child slavery in cocoa has been eradicated. Delves into child labor in Uzbekistan cotton, linking an article pro and a video against. Reviews a new book by Tracy Kidder called Strength in What Remains. Asks whether the international development aid that antagonized the Hutu-Tutsi relationship was “unwitting.” Consults Brian Eno’s Oblique Strategies for advice on life after FRSC.

Poems:

  • Samuel Hazo, “Seesaws” 
  • Ranier Marie Rilke, “You Are the Future”

Songs and/or Music Videos:

  • Trilok Gurtu, “Dea” 
  • Michael Franti and Spearhead, “Sometimes”
  • Michael Franti and Spearhead, “Nobody Right, Nobody Wrong”

Informational Videos: