Leaning towards Jill

Jill Richardson at Sustainable Food (a part of change.org) ranted about Earth Hour today. I admit being swayed by these last paragraphs cited below.
The one good thing about that condo was its proximity to a bike path. All summer long, I biked to work during the week and biked the 12 miles to get downtown Madison, WI on the weekends. Oh how I miss that bike path! I'm driving a Prius now, but I'm driving. If I still had a bike path near me, I would definitely use it. Yet there are no bike paths. And what really got me mad was a sign I saw over a nearby highway last year that said "Bike to work day tomorrow!" I wanted to give that stupid sign the finger. How the heck am I supposed to bike to work if nobody builds any bike paths? Especially here in S. California, where you practically can't get anywhere without using a highway. You can bike on the road. You can't bike on the highway.

So how much money went into publicizing and promoting that hour in the dark yesterday, and how much energy did it save? Because no matter how motivated anyone gets about saving the earth, it's impossible for us to do it if the government (or somebody else with very deep pockets) doesn't pitch in and help. Next time someone feels like funding a major green initiative, they should take their money and put it into building bike paths or helping homeowners afford solar panels. They should put it into helping farmers go organic, or helping farmers markets get EBT readers so that food stamp recipients can shop at the farmers' market. We don't need publicity stunts, we need solutions.

The background is Jill's position that financial realities have kept her from being able to live sustainably. It is worth a read to follow her particular experience. Let me just say that I am intensely aware of the obstacles in my way. I made a list over the weekend of 24 things to be done to make my 280 sf home and an equally sized side area more sustainable.

These all have financial obstacles, physical energy or skill obstacles, minor land owner obstacles and city / state code obstacles. All of these are larger than simply my awareness or my will to make change.
My little world is filled with obstacles and obfuscation. So is everyone else's except the uber rich. Let's stop pretending we need to study more, learn more, invent more, discuss more . . . it is time to just do things.

The country needs and, unless I mistake its temper, the country demands bold, persistent experimentation. It is common sense to take a method and try it: If it fails, admit it frankly and try another.
But above all, try something. The millions who are in want will not stand by silently forever while the things to satisfy their needs are within easy reach. ~ FDR

Earth Hour, just because . . .

This year I feel simply, why not? And happily I may have gotten the mobile home community where I live involved. We may have a real crowd.

Update: Fail. Only one person showed up and there was a person in a sleeping bag lying beside the camp fire. We left the sleeping body in peace and went to our homes. Lights were on in most every home, all the exterior public lights were on and every business across the street. *sigh*


My blogging energy is unsustainable this year. As I let the sun shine on my own life's experiences, my own privilege, my intolerance, my foiables and my own self-delusions - myths; I cannot offer up intelligible writing for others to read. And though there is a place and a time for disclosure, for sharing this kind of discovery process; it is not here and now for me.

See, the creepy part is that as I uncover something toxic within myself I see it all around. The light is shining inside and revealing so much and then it is harshly lit all around. That is the nature of self-discovery I have found. So, I get sidetracked being really cranky about others because of my hyper-awareness. Today I am reacting to all of the white entitlement excuded in other blog postings. And, you know what that means? That is no doubt me here up on Mt. Privilege where the view is obscurred by a lot of smog and fog.

But, I will make an occasional appearance or post links and videos. It isn't a painful time for me, merely uncomfortable. Akin to standing stark naked in the bright sunlight, getting comfortable in my own skin is the biggest adjustment. And, I have lived most of my life inside my mental perceptions and that is not the most sustainable way to live. My body is getting older, fatter and weaker because I haven't used it fully. Now I am challenging this and find I can't bring along others on this ride. For now it this is mine, all mine.

Esther Bacon nude via Petulant

Van Jones again . . .

This man can speak.

Update 3/15/09 from Grist:
Good Job! Speaking of effective spokespeople, the green economy movement has a few. OK, a very few. And one of them is Van Jones. So we're giving a provisional thumbs up to the Obama administration for bringing Jones into the fold. Maybe he can teach them how to talk about this stuff in a way that doesn't sound weasely.

But this thumb can turn to a finger in a heartbeat. (Don't make us!) Jones' primary strength is his ability to communicate and inspire. If the administration puts him at a desk pushing paper, it will have removed one of the movement's few effective voices, for little gain. The Obamans need to use Jones as an evangelist. Take those pinheads Geithner and Orszag off the teevee and put Jones up there, making the case for smart carbon policy in a way that connects beyond the pinhead demographic.

The administration has picked up a bazooka. They better start firing it!

Let's hear it for the Women

We are more than half of the world's population. Nations of the world, "Ur doin it Wrong!"

Obama Quote

Via Grist

"Throughout our history, there's been a tension between those who've sought to conserve our natural resources for the benefit of future generations, and those who have sought to profit from these resources. But I'm here to tell you this is a false choice. With smart, sustainable policies, we can grow our economy today and preserve the environment for ourselves, our children, and our grandchildren."

-- President Barack Obama, speaking at an event honoring the 160th anniversary of the creation of the Department of Interior on Tuesday.

I did hear this as a have your cake and eat it too. The corporate owners are spending billions as you read this to use the resources as they have for decades, for growth and profits. The marketing, packaging and political quotes like the above will sound like the owners care. They don't. It doesn't help us to be fooled again.

Another source says it better than I have:

The task of government right now is not to prop up doomed systems at their current scales of failure, but to prepare the public to rebuild our systems at smaller scales.