What Will It Take…?

( – promoted by buhdydharma )

You know how it is….. that moment…? You’re sitting at a stop light maybe, or just at a park, and the birds are chirping and squawking, dotting a the power line or blanketing the limbs of an oak tree. Then suddenly, they take flight. Almost as one. What was their cue?  And … how do they DO that … with no committee meetings, no caucus, no vote… ?

Bird flock Pictures, Images and Photos

We’re not the only ones scratchin’ our heads… Saw this posted at commondreams (and elsewhere I think, but I dont see where)…

We Need Your Ideas: A Call for Direct Action in the Climate Movement

An open letter from the Rainforest Action Network, Greenpeace USA, and 350.org:

What will it take to finally get serious about climate change?

by Bill McKibben, Phil Radford, & Becky Tarbotton

… Time is not on our side, so we’ve concluded that going forward mass direct action must play a bigger role in this movement, as it eventually did in the suffrage movement, the civil-rights movement, and the fight against corporate globalization. Even now, environmentalists in places like the coalfields of Appalachia have been putting these tactics to good use, albeit in small ways. (In the spring of 2009, our three groups worked with others to pull off a large-scale action outside the congressional power plant in D.C. that resulted in a promise that it would cease to burn coal.) History suggests, in other words, that one way to effectively communicate both to the general public and to our leaders the urgency of the crisis is to put our bodies on the line.

Nobody can predict which one event will trigger social change. Paul Revere was not the only rider to warn of the British advance, and many people refused to move to the back of the bus before Rosa Parks. But we do know two things. First, that we must act with unity, and second, many minds working together are likely to be smarter. So we’re asking for your help. As you go about your other work on behalf of the planet and its diverse communities, think about the possibilities for direct action, and write them down and send them to us.


Note too that though this letter comes from just three environmental groups, we want this fight open to everyone. We’ll happily work with any organization that shares our goals and tactics as plans go forward; in fact, we think that breaking down boundaries between groups is key to any chance at success. We’ll do our best to reach out, but please make sure you let us know you want to be involved.

We’ve set up a special email address for ideas: climate.ideas@gmail.com

By late autumn, we hope we’ll have been able to mine those ideas and start coming up with coherent plans for actions starting next spring.

and heres a top comment from there…lol

Where are EDF, NRDC, Ducks Unlimited, the Sierra Club, the World Wildlife Fund, the Nature Conservancy and 100 other enviro groups? Why didn’t McKibben et al contact them first or were they rebuffed? Where are the big “green” food corporations, Newman’s Organics, Whole Foods, Cascadian Farms, etc? Where are the big alt energy corporations (and the little ones)?. Everybody I just mentioned has a big, fat, life and death stake in global warming above and beyond their stake as individual humans. Where are they?

Where are the line staff of the EPA, NOAA and a dozen other govt agencies, all of whom know what’s coming and none of whom have acted yet or at least not enough?

Where are the unions? Won’t they get jobs out of alt energy? Are they too busy, splitting, re-joining, posturing and posing, and laundering Mob $$$?

Hell, where’s the military? They know this is coming; they’re already writing contingencies for a hot, flooded, starving world. It took the Army to knock down Joe McCarthy; maybe it’ll take the Army to get serious about this.

Oh and as to mass action – forget about excluding the provocateurs, “incendiaries”, trotskyites and sectarian trolls. You can’t keep them out. These people have no lives. They wait all their lives for somebody else to organize a demo so they can fuck it up. Mass action will also fall prey to excessive and shallow “democratization”. Meaning basically, total lack of focus, discipline and responsibility. You organize a rally for climate protection and a bunch of assholes in bandanas and berets show up with signs reading “Death to Zionists” or “Legalize man-boy love” or some crazy-ass shit and that’s where the stupid, gullible reporters flock. Pretty soon the LaRouche zanies and the Islamic Purity League have fucking info tables on the plaza right next to you! Honor-killers on one side and cold fusion nutjobs on the other. Jeesh!

You have to outnumber them and try to ignore them. That’s why McKibbin et al has to organize the rest of the enviros, the unions, the govt rank and file. Without them, nothing happens.

Okay, that was kinda funny. Started off good though. Sorry, I’m easily distracted! lol

Scrolling through some more of the comments there… man, people are all over the place.

We’ve touched on this here from time to time. What I’ve seen so often, that I think is probably our biggest obstacle, is our own individuality, sometimes ego but not always, our resistence to any lockstep lemming way of approaching activism, progressivism. And rightly so, of course.

I see so many bloggers talk about Solidarity or Coalitioning, but then it all devolves.

Everyone has their own take, their front ‘n’ center issue, their argument for a given strategy. It’s so complex, there is need for that.

But how do we capture a central vision? and then promote that? Because we can’t address “Climate Change” alone as if it were an isolated “issue”. Well, we can, but without some underlying moral code, some cohesive commonality, it’s all just dust in the wind.



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  1. Flock of Birds Pictures, Images and Photos

  2. what the fuck is WRONG with people?!?!??!

    block EPA regs…. huh?

    The groups oppose rules slated to take effect beginning early next year to limit greenhouse-gas (GHG) emissions from power plants and other large stationary sources, and the letters express concern that burdensome regulations could eventually apply to a large swath of the economy.

    “There is the very real prospect that investments by businesses across the entire economy – the investments that will drive economic recovery and job creation – will be delayed, curtailed or, even worse, cancelled,” state the letters, obtained by The Hill.

  3. broccoli!!!!

    • Xanthe on September 16, 2010 at 3:04 am

    We all know after WWII it was highways and the car –

    that has to change – and we must do better in public transportation – high speed railway.  I thought we needed jobs – can’t we do something here.  What about bonds?  Since it seems the Republicans and now the TPs block anything that’s both imaginative and needs money. it requires a fight and a real leader.  But the employment would put that money back into the mix.

    Some friends of mine in their middle 60s just bought a 10 room house and they are empty nesters.  She always wanted a “big house.”  And now that the two kids are gone, why not?  We’ve got the money.

    Americans have to begin thinking small isn’t all bad.  

    Subsidized housing that is ecologically sound and in the midst of good public transportation must be considered for the middle class.  Well, after we suburbanize Afghanistan, of course.

    • RUKind on September 16, 2010 at 4:12 am

    It’s time to adapt or die. Me, I’m adapting to a four season solar powered harvest on my little half-acre. See  Elliot Coleman’s work for more detail. Also, make sure you’re on the best aquifer you can find. Potable water is going to be the world’s number one resource crunch.

    • k9disc on September 16, 2010 at 4:13 am

    The idea of the birds exploding into flight is powerful.

    I don’t know how that’s going to happen when nobody knows we can even fly.

    I think the problem is that we are powerless, or feel powerless.

    Perhaps if we could take down a couple of big boys, or actually throw a serious monkey wrench into the system. We need some sense of empowerment that’s just not there.

    My initial thought was an action, refuse to buy heavily environmentally ladened crap, but that’s nearly impossible today.

    Perhaps a serious ‘buy local’ push. What about occupying factories and taking positive action?

    Thank you for sharing…

    Hope you get many more comments…

  4. not a General Strike exactly, but a Strike of all school aged children…. they refuse to attend school. Schools get paid on a daily basis per the attendance record (thats why theyre so adament about Perfect Attendance… even if youre sick which annoys me to no end)…

    anyway. Its kids’ future that is being bankrupted by this horrendous failure on the part of gov’ts… so I think kids should have the right to ‘boycott’ school and make demands that CLimate Crisis be addressed & fixed. Its kind of a hostage trade-off.  

    Who does the future belong to? the politicians and oil barons or our kids?

    havent thought this through… but I like the idea. lol.

    • banger on September 16, 2010 at 11:53 pm

    Just a fact. Building community is of central importance. It can’t be just getting together once every couple of months and marching. It means working with, playing with, living with others and sharing a commitment in writing if necessary towards a common goal without that: nothing can happen of any significance politically.

  5. …. the U.S. Senate to do something useful, you’re going to be waiting for a very long time.

    I have no idea if the current Chief Executive even believes in it or believes that human beings are capable of doing anything about it.   There seems to be a gap between his earlier rhetoric and his actions.

    The Senate sucks.  Did I mention, the Senate sucks ?

    Many of you are familiar with my theory they’re (OFA and the DNC  beltway) have been angling for creating a much more conservative congress makeup so they can throw up their hands, shrug, and say “oh well.”   Imagine my surprise when other people began to say this, because sometimes I wander around for years seeing things differently, and it doesn’t ever catch on.  This means it’s pretty blatant.

    We see now that the current Democratic Majority (/cough/) Senate does not consider this issue a priority.

    We had the vision, the elected politicians just blew us off, very big.  

    Awhile back I had tried saving (it’s in hard drive valhalla with a lot of my other notes and photos)  a think tank sponsored evening soiree transcript whereby a lot of the Big MSM Names in DC revealed themselves to think the entire climate change and peak oil theories were one big joke.  And this was while the oil spill was going on, for good measure.  I don’t know if they were just drunk or basically cynic- atheists, but it was clear they did not care.  At all.  About environmental impact. About what it means to run low on oil, then out.  I think they are in the moment now, in a non dharma sort of way, and then they figure Armageddon’s coming anyway in the future so it doesn’t matter. Pass the wine and grey Poupon.

    I am reading where “experts” are seriously talking about great leaps in world population in 30 years from now, as if not only is it going to happen, but we’re going to be able to cope with it, when we cannot cope with feeding and sheltering our current population.  We will kill off most life in the oceans and sea nursery estuaries at this rate, and it doesn’t occur to any of them that we are also making so much spread of acid, ammonia, and mercury in the environment, that we are going to see an increase in mutations, diseases, die offs, and health problems in humans. AND in animals, both wild and domestic.

    My guess is that there is some Pentagon/CIA write up somewhere that says  they just expect shorter lifespans, more plagues or poisonings, everlasting war over the remaining oil reserves, and more draconium measures to control the population.

    Meantime, Exxon, Chevron, BP, Occidental,  et al,  promises not to crank up gasoline and fuel oil prices dramatically before elections on the DINO Vichy Blue Dems if they behave themselves.  I’m just speculating, just like they went hog wild speculating in the summer of 2008.

    It looks like they just intend for us to keep using until the meth cocaine crack  fossil fuels petroleum products run out.

    Since we are not getting the leadership on this topic at the top (and you should see what is going on here in red wing nuttia land from the Tea Party contingent ) we are going to have to depend on individual consumer demand somewhat, combined with sharing knowledge.

    The military and/or the politicians will mess up sooner or later and we’ll have another big price crisis or shortage. THAT will get people’s attention again because the last one triggered this financial millennial depression. People will freeze to death.  There will be anger.  Maybe enough. Maybe not.

  6. institutions including the ones that are billed as green and/or liberal are capable of changing the trajectory were on. They have grown out of the politics/power structures that operate on the faulty entrenched status quo. Business is all funneled though the big giant corporate conglomerate that is the US government. All attempts to change the reality must go through the power center that requires and regards all movement in the light of retaining the economics of the too bigs who own the place. As long as the main purpose of our government is to make global markets profitable and promote what it defines as progress the institutions like the Sierra Club or Unions play their game. They have no choice as this is where all the money and power is.

    I think the only way is community and local. The question seems to me to be will we be able to implement the changes outside the fortress they have built to control, exploit the worlds wealth and resources, including humans? Perhaps the best thing that could happen is that the economy does fall apart. Meanwhile like South America perhaps regional/state/community will be forced for both economic and environmental reasons to develop businesses and find solutions that are sustainable. We get so distracted by the drama of centralized politics’s that are incapable of even addressing reality other then the one they create. Preservation of our life styles seems pretty irrelevant when in reality the goal of our government and their owners is to destroy it now that they have milked it dry. We need some new ‘values’ ones that match the reality we find ourselves and the planet facing.                    

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