Thursday, October 25, 2007

Thank you for contacting the office of Congresswoman Nancy Pelosi.

The following is from Common Dreams, and asks a question that must be asked over and over of the Speaker: Why will you not impeach this administration for its abuses of power? Impeachment is not an option or done by whim. Please call on her to act to protect what is left of the Constitution.

Donny Fix
San Francisco

What Did Pelosi Know About NSA, and When Did She Know It?

by Ray McGovern

Published on Tuesday, October 16, 2007 by

It is time to fish or cut bait. If the Bush administration did not inform you regarding eavesdropping on Americans before 9/11, you need to reflect now on what such disregard for the laws and Constitution on matters of this importance means for future of our Republic, and cease covering up for the White House. Familiarize yourself with the orderly process the Founders wrote into the Constitution to address this kind of abuse of power. It is called impeachment; there is no reason to be afraid. You may wish to locate a copy of the Constitution and read Article II, Section 4:

“The President, Vice President and all civil Officers of the United States, shall be removed from Office on Impeachment for, and Conviction of, Treason, Bribery, or other high Crimes and Misdemeanors.”

I cannot believe that, with your pedigree and schooling, you now forget the difference between the indicative and the subjunctive mood. The Founders did not. The Constitution does not say the president “may be” impeached, unless the speaker of the House decides for some reason to keep impeachment off the table. Given the long train of abuses and usurpations of this administration, you have no choice but to begin impeachment proceedings, Madame Speaker, if protecting our rights under constitutional government means anything to you.

Tuesday, September 25, 2007

Ahmadinejad: Iran Not Walking Toward War, Iranian Leader Tells Scott Pelley His Country Does Not Need Nuclear Weapons - CBS News

Ahmadinejad: Iran Not Walking Toward War, Iranian Leader Tells Scott Pelley His Country Does Not Need Nuclear Weapons - CBS News

President Ahmadinejad has suffered much stupidity coming out of our main stream media, like Pelly's 60 Minutes embarrassment, as well as the shrill questioning of Charlie Rose and dismissive and misleading reporting from Katie Couric and others.

While I do not agree with all the man says, he says enough that I can agree with that I do not feel served by the DA cross examination treatment he has faced.

On numerous occasions, I heard him questioned about his nuclear ambitions, as alleged by the Bush administration. In the following excerpt from the interview, Ahmadinejad denies at least 4 times that his government is arming the Iraqi resistance.

He also seems to scoff at the idea that he covets nuclear weapon capability, and says if nuclear weapons could resolve the problems between nations, it would have by now, and it never has.

I do wish Ahmadinejad would end his nuclear power program, and set an example for meeting his country's energy needs more sustainably through wind and sun, which are more abundant in the Middle East than oil.

But his message is that any autonomous people should be able to make their local decisions, and the US's security interests should not impose themselves on the goals and process of the United Nations. As a decentralist Green/anarchist, I agree with that

So, as an environmentalist who stringently opposes nuclear power and weapons, I have to support Iran's right to move ahead on its nuclear power program as a matter of autonomy.

But I would also urge the US, Iran and all nuclear and non-nuclear nations to work together on more effective energy strategies. They should be centered more on conservation and decentralized renewable energies, worker and public safety, oversight and storage of nuclear wastes, and further nuclear arms reductions.

Talk to me,

Donny Fix

from 60-Minutes on American accusations:

"It is an established fact now that Iranian bombs and Iranian know-how are killing Americans in Iraq. You have American blood on your hands. Why?" Pelley asked.

"Well, this is what the American officials are saying. Again, American officials wherever around the world that they encounter a problem which they fail to resolve, instead of accepting that, they prefer to accuse others," the president replied. "I'm very sorry that because of the wrong decisions taken by American officials, Iraqi people are being killed and also American soldiers. It's very regrettable."

"The American Army has captured Iranian missiles in Iraq. The critical elements of the explosively formed penetrator bombs that are killing so many people are coming from Iran. There's no doubt about that anymore. The denials are no longer credible, sir," Pelley pointed out.

"Very good. If I may. Are you an American politician? Am I to look at you as an American politician or a reporter? This is what the American officials are claiming," Ahmadinejad replied. "If they accuse us 1,000 times, the truth will not change."

"Are you saying that it is not the policy of this government to send weapons into Iraq? Sir, forgive me, you're smiling, but this is a very serious matter to America," Pelley said.

"Well, it's serious for us as well. I daresay it's serious for everyone," Ahmadinejad told Pelley. "It seems to me it's laughable for someone to turn a blind eye to the truth and accuse others. It doesn't help. And the reason that I'm smiling, again, it's because that the picture is so clear. But American officials refuse to see it."

Asked if he could very simply and directly say that Iran is not sending weapons to Iraq, Ahmadinejad said, "We don't need to do that. We are very much opposed to war and insecurity…"

"Is that a 'No,' sir?" Pelley asked.

"…by Iraq. It's very clear the situation. The insecurity in Iraq is detrimental to our interests," Ahmadinejad said.

Wednesday, September 19, 2007

Tuesday, September 18, 2007

Diplomatic convoys curtailed in Iraq - Yahoo! News

Diplomatic convoys curtailed in Iraq - Yahoo! News

Whatever government finally takes hold in Iraq, the US will want a piece of the oil action, as set out in the Plan for a New American Century:

Without their mercenary thugs, paid more and controlled less than American combat troops, diplomats charged with twisting arms in the al-Maliki government are losing their enforcers. Without Blackwater, Dyncorp and other private armies, controlled by neither the laws of Iraq, of the US, nor, apparently, the UN, American negotiators will have to abide by the rules- such that are left- and turn down the heat under the whistle of the American agenda.

Sunday, September 16, 2007

Original Sin

The war against "terrorism" guarantees military solutions to the ongoing feud humanity has had with its baser nature- at least according to some fundamentalist religious beliefs.

Original Sin reminds us that none of us is pure enough to declare mass death to anybody.

Written and performed by,

Donny Fix

Thursday, September 6, 2007

Leaders gather in Iraqi province days after Bush visit - Yahoo! News

Leaders gather in Iraqi province days after Bush visit - Yahoo! News

Here is the carrot on the stick, to get economic deals in Anbar Province to win over the Sunnis.

Sunnis are put in the place of moving toward the Americans after America took out their man in Baghdad, Saddam Hussein, and unleashed the oppressed Shiite majority, backed by their Iranian kin.

Now the clash is at least characterized as being between Ba'athist Sunnis and al Qaeda Sunnis.

All in an effort to keep all the factions from uniting against us.

Thursday, August 30, 2007

First Amendment Challenge

CAUTION: Adult Content!

A challenge to the war on drugs and the war for oil, dedicated to the ones whose addiction is killing the people, the earth, and human integrity.

Donny Fix

Wednesday, August 29, 2007

Record Number of Americans Lack Health Insurance -

Record Number of Americans Lack Health Insurance -

Take note how the mainstream media pretty unanimously paints this as a health "insurance" crisis, instead of the more correct health "care" crisis.

There are more ways to deliver health care to the population besides the health insurance industry. There is no such industry in many countries, like England, Canada and France, whose populations are all covered by national health care coverage. And at a fraction of the total costs of the American system.

It just makes sense that if a thing like health care, education, energy and other public needs are privatized, relegated to making a profit for investors, those costs will rise to help the investors realize their just profits.

In California, we have an opportunity to turn that around. Support for the Single-Payer health care legislation drafted by State Senator Sheila Kuehl and supported by a growing list of legislators would expand Medicaid, Medi-Cal, and other health delivery agencies, and consolidate them in to a plan much like that of Canada.

Legislators at the state and national level need to hear that it is not just about insurance. Other tools are available to fulfill the need for health care. If you need encouragement, go see Michael Moore's "SICKO".

Then, in California, support SB 840.

And in the nation, Medicaid for the masses!

Donny Fix

Tuesday, August 28, 2007

He's Brave (with other people's children)

I wrote this song too long ago, now, about the timne the hundredth US soldier died in Iraq. It's called "He's Brave (with other people's children)", and were the words of one mother told her son would not be returning home. That mother later became known to me to be Sandy Sheehan

We will all know who "He" is, if we remember some of our saddest history the day Bush landed on an aircraft carrier and declared, "Bring 'em on!"- At least he did a mea culpa on that, if only a superficial one.

But one role of folk music and blues has been to document a moment in time, and the feelings engendered, and this is one that needs to be remembered.

Donny Fix

Monday, August 27, 2007

Bangkok Post Breaking News

Bangkok Post Breaking News

Now, as much as ever, follow the money.

It is no surprise that Afghanistan is offering yet another parallel with Viet Nam. During that war, the Golden Triangle grew as an international economic force through heroin export. French Connection mafia, local warlords and the CIA were among the profiteers.

Later, Ollie North and Ronald Reagan tried the same out of the White House basement, this time negotiating guns for cocaine deals between Nicaragua and Iran.

Now, poppies from Afghanistan, and if history is any judge, look for American hands in the blood money.

We should also prepare for a major influx of heroin, especially in to poorer neighborhoods as happened during Viet Nam. As Alongopos and Saigon Cities materialize outside the permanent military bases being established, young soldiers (and maybe some old) will find ways to smoke opium, or worse. One's free. And the cares float away, for a while.

For many years, I have heard many the story of men my age who experienced horror or boredom and fixed it, for a while.

Meanwhile, look out for where the money for this bumper Afghan crop is headed.

Saturday, August 11, 2007

Bill Moyers Journal . Tough Talk on Impeachment | PBS

Bill Moyers Journal . Tough Talk on Impeachment PBS

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and other members of congress are complicit in the war crimes of the Bush-Cheney regime. We need to impeach them NOW, before another president is elected who believes that the tools Bush/Cheney have developed for themselves can continue to be used. Instead, Pelosi comtinues to call impeachment "off the table".

The American public will be increasingly estranged from this government as long as it continues to hold politics over statesmanship, as pointed out in this Moyer piece.

Everyone needs to pressure- and keep pressuring- their US Congressional representatives to hold this administration accountable for its deeds. Domestic spying, torture, intimidation of the media- these are not the things I consider American values.


Wednesday, August 1, 2007

Our unnecessary nuclear future - SFBG Politics Blog

Our unnecessary nuclear future - SFBG Politics Blog

More on effort to revive nuclear power as an answer to global warming.

Following is an article I wrote a couple of years ago warning of Bohemian Grove connections to the support for this lie:

Lynn Orr, Bohemian Behind the Rebirth of Nuclear Power

by Don Eichelberger

Lynn Orr, director of the Global Climate and Energy Project (G-CEP), at the


conference announcing the creation of the project, Nov. 20, 2002.


In 2002, Stanford University announced the creation of the Global Climate

and Energy Project, naming the interim head of the Stanford Earth Sciences

Dept, Lynn Orr, as director. His training as a hydraulics engineer has

focused on wringing more oil and gas deposits out of the earth's mantle,

and discovering ways of "sequestering" CO2 in deep geologic formations.

His conversations with Schlumberger (oil well drilling equipment and

technical support), ExxonMobil and General Electric helped develop the idea

for the project. DCEP has grown to include E.On, one of the world's

largest energy holding companies. E.On's holdings include natural gas and

oil wells, coal mines, electric production and distribution facilities,

including the newly acquired systems in Spain and Kentucky.

The stated goal of DCEP is to develop the means "to produce sufficient

energy to meet the needs of a growing world population in a way that

protects the environment..."

Orr's hope is to pull more students in to engineering careers and put them

to work solving the technical problems leading to plentiful energy and

fewer greenhouse gasses. He is a true believer that technology and

engineering will get us out of the problems we face. As a director of the

David and Lucille Packard Foundation with his wife, Susan Packard-Orr, he

has already endowed scholarships at Stanford.

Pulling together the massive resources of GE, ExxonMobil, E.On and

academia, he is also working to develop an integrated international energy

grid, drawing from all energy sources that do not produce greenhouse

gasses, or whose gasses can be sequestered. Prominently mentioned in his

speech announcing DCEP, Orr made it clear nuclear power has a welcome place

in the world's energy mix. GE is a founding member of DCEP, and proud

inventor of the boiling water reactor, work horse of the current nuclear

industry. They have developed a new generation of "safe" reactors they

make no secret of wanting to build. They predict that 4% of new generation

built in Europe will come from nuclear by 2015.

GE is also diversifying, and has recently acquired offshore natural gas

leases near marine sanctuaries in the Gulf of Mexico. They are investing

in creating an infrastructure that will allow them to get the remaining

natural gas from sources that were too played out to bother with while gas

prices were low. Now....

Following are key passages from Lynn Orr's speech announcing formation of

DCEP in 2002:

"Imagine a set of global energy systems that will meet society's

requirements for energy with low greenhouse emissions. What will the

primary energy sources be: solar, wind, nuclear power, biomass, fossil fuels?

"In this project, we will build a research portfolio that seeks

opportunities across the full range of primary energy sources, and we will

carry out pre-commercial research that will add innovative technologies and

systems to the global energy mix. We will concentrate on the technology

research, and we will consider safety, environmental impacts, market

acceptance, social responsibility and cost as we build the research effort.

"The mix of future energy technologies will interact in complex ways. Let

me give you an example. Suppose for the moment, that hydrogen becomes the

preferred transportation fuel of the future. We will need to find ways to

generate H2 on a large scale and at reasonable cost. The development of an

advanced infrastructure for hydrogen distribution could favor generation of

the hydrogen at central facilities, while the absence of such an

infrastructure would favor distributed generation.

"If hydrogen were made centrally from methane, coal or other fossil fuel

sources, then CO2 would also be generated as a by-product, and it would be

necessary to separate, capture and store the CO2 generated (perhaps in

depleted oil and gas reservoirs, or unmineable coal beds, for example). On

the other hand, if sufficient electricity could be generated by solar, wind

or nuclear power to make hydrogen from water, no CO2 would be created in

the hydrogen generation step, and CO2 sequestration methods would be less


Tuesday, July 31, 2007

Daily Kos: An O'Reilly-Free Post

Daily Kos: An O'Reilly-Free Post

Everything you never wanted to know about O'Reilly and his factor.


ALTERNATIVE ENERGY BLOG - Is Ethanol / E85 Fuel the Solution?

ALTERNATIVE ENERGY BLOG - Is Ethanol / E85 Fuel the Solution?

Speaks for Itself. Good resource. » Eco-junk » Eco-junk

George Monbiot affirms once again that "green consumerism" will not get us out of the environmental quagmire we are moving toward, and that the message is not a popular one. Only necessary.

Friday, July 27, 2007



This is a series of three interesting and disturbing movies that everyone should watch. They will entertain, inform, confuse and probably anger many. But sometimes, social change begins with getting pissed off.



Pakistan Issues Nuclear Threat to US


Here is a cautionary tale about how nuclear war can be just one incident away in a Middle East increasingly aware that Americans hold little control over their President. They fear he will do as he damn well pleases, and they feel the need to prepare for it.

We have to move soon on impeachment so the rest of the world knows all Americans are not complicit in the crimes being committed.


Wednesday, July 25, 2007

BBC NEWS | Science/Nature | Society 'needs the right chemistry'

BBC NEWS | Science/Nature | Society 'needs the right chemistry'

Interesting take on remaking society more carbon-free, starting, of course, with less use of fossil fuels, but also finding scientific solutions that reduce the amount of energy it takes to produce what we need .

Friday, July 20, 2007

Olbermann: Go to Iraq and fight, Mr. President - Countdown with Keith Olbermann -

Olbermann: Go to Iraq and fight, Mr. President - Countdown with Keith Olbermann -

In this 7 plus minutes of vitriol, MSNBS's Keith Olbermann tells it like it is. Wonder if any of this is getting through to "The Dub"?

Thursday, July 19, 2007

Endangered Species Decisions Re-Examined -

Endangered Species Decisions Re-Examined -

Scary what an assistant secretary of fish and wildlife can get away with! Good riddance to her.

Evolution, one bureaucrat at a time.

Friday, July 13, 2007

YouTube - More on Energy Density

YouTube - More on Energy Density

David Fridley, staff scientist for Lawrence Berkeley Labs, continues his presentation on "The Myths of Biofuels". In brief: 1/2 rail car of coal holds energy equal to 16 cars of corn. So, unless biofuel crops are grown close to processing plants, transportation of biomass and fuels will undercut gains while driving up the price of competing food crops, including animal feed.

Tuesday, July 10, 2007

Bush says no Iraq shift; criticism rises - Yahoo! News

Bush says no Iraq shift; criticism rises - Yahoo! News

The most astute comment I have heard on our lack of strategy for getting out of Iraq after the invasion came from a CIA analyst in the excellent documentary "Why We Fight". There was no exit strategy, he said, because we never intended to leave.

We are there for the oil. We are in a situation where the public in Iraq knows that, and many oppose the taking of their resources as recompense for "ridding them of a tyrant".

During our American Revolution, whose birthday we just celebrated, buckskin clad revolutionaries shot at the "red coats" out of trees, and were accused of being the "terrorists" of their day by Britain's King George III.

We are caught in a guerrilla warfare with people willing to "die a martyr" to oppose satanic imperialism. Meanwhile, the American public's young future is martyred for a cause few Americans fully understand, let alone support.

The only government that will have legitimacy with the Iraqis will be one that can kick our (U.S.) butts out of the country and demand sovereignty over its oil, and maybe even the Palestinian people, in general.

Maybe that's General Petraeus' plan: President al-Miliki declares Iraqi forces at war with U.S., "forcing" us to redeploy- to Iran.

At this point, nothing surprises me,

Donny Fix

Sunday, July 8, 2007

More on the myths of biofuels

New at You Tube

David Fridley, staff scientist for Lawrence Berkeley Labs, continues his presentation on "The Myths of Biofuels". In brief: 1/2 rail car of coal holds energy equal to 16 cars of corn. So, unless biofuel crops are grown close to processing plants, transportation of biomass and fuels will undercut gains while driving up the price of competing food crops, including animal feed.

Armitage: Cheney Cabal Scapegoat - by Gordon Prather

Armitage: Cheney Cabal Scapegoat - by Gordon Prather

Reasoning that his numbers were thought the floor, anyway, this prez cut Scooter loose from jail time. Covered his end of the bargain, what's wrong with that?? Oh, right.

This link gives a lot of the back story behind the Valerie Plame outing. This cabal could almost as well be called the Bohemian cabal- Bush, Cheney, Armatage, many of the main players go to Bohemian Grove each year to cremate "Dull Care" and take refuge with their kind.

They all must be held accountable.

None Impeached until All are Impeached!

Donny Fix

Daily Kos: Must-Read Update! Plame Leak Exposed Brewster Jennings Asset on Oil, WMD

Daily Kos: Must-Read Update! Plame Leak Exposed Brewster Jennings Asset on Oil, WMD

Here, lest we forget, is a summary of one effect of the outing by the Bush administration of Valerie Plame as a CIA operative, and of the company she worked for as a CIA front playing tug-o-war with China over most of Saudi Arabia's reserves.

It does not seem important WHO in the administration did the outing, this time, Scooter got the pardon.

What ever faith people might still have had in government is down the shit hole now! Now that all the crud this administration has been allowed to get away with has led to record low opinion poll ratings, Bush figures why even try to keep up a facade?

He's getting bold, and before long, I predict we'll really see him trying to really strut his stuff.

You'll know it when you see it.


United Press International - Energy - Analysis

United Press International - Energy - Analysis

Notice how nuclear power is defined as "renewable", with only the promise that it does not emit greenhouse gasses. Readers of this blog will recall that this claim is questionable when the whole nuclear fuel chain; minimg, milling. processing, transportation and reprocessing, are taken in to account.

All that aside, nuclear power is a bad idea if only for the weapons proliferation. The most efficient way to produce energy is to save it. It may be necessary to save the power we will not be getting from 500 megawatt nuclear reactors.

Of course, conservation is considered bad for business- cuts in to the bottom line.

So the frame can go from, "what can I do to conserve more?" to "what can I do to screw up the mottom line of a giant energy company?"

Now, doesn't that feel better?

Donny Fix

Wednesday, June 27, 2007

Monday, June 25, 2007

Nuclear Waste Cost Estimates will Likely Increase

d07761.pdf (application/pdf Object)

Here is a newly released GAO study on nuclear waste whose title says it all-

Nuclear Waste: Plans for Addressing Most Buried Transuranic Wastes Are
Not Final, and Preliminary Cost Estimates Will Likely Increase.

Saturday, June 23, 2007

Agricultural commodities | Biofuelled |

Agricultural commodities | Biofuelled |

More ammunition showing that as food crops such as corn and soy are turned toward biofuels production, their prices have begun to reflect the (increasing) price of oil. Meanwhile, as more of the world's people become "well-off" enough to consume meat, the grains the steers, milk cows, and chickens feed on are in competition with biofuels cultivation and driving up their cost, so more for meat, poultry, eggs and milk.

Moral: Eat more produce, drive less.

Thursday, June 21, 2007

BBC NEWS | Science/Nature | Fruit could make 'powerful fuel'

BBC NEWS | Science/Nature | Fruit could make 'powerful fuel'

This makes the point that widespread use of this technology could have an adverse effect on food prices, but does not go in to it much.

Still, it is a concern. Other "waste" products suggested as a potential fuel source depend upon an as-yet not developed enzyme as its promise. As I have said, biofuels needs to be approached cautiously, as does any technology that attempts to protect the status quo- in this case car culture.

BBC NEWS | Asia-Pacific | China building more power plants

BBC NEWS | Asia-Pacific | China building more power plants

Here is an interesting story that makes ther point that a good share of China's carbon footprint is the result of a long history of Western nations sending their manufacturing to China to take advantage of cheap labor.

The article suggests that the West could export more renewable technologies to China to help lessen the environmental footprint and give a nudge to renewables. I think we need to rethink the entire area of trade from an environmental perspective. All concerned should consume locally and learn what we can do without, so we don't use so much of our dwindling resources, especially oil which we are in a war for, sending consumables all over the world.

Producing less to consume less is not a popular message to some sectors of capitalist society. But for long term conservation efforts that will reduce our impact on the earth's ability to support us, it will be necessary.

Tuesday, June 19, 2007

YouTube - Myths of Biofuels

YouTube - Myths of Biofuels

Check out why we need to remain vigilant of energy choices we make. Sometimes, Green(wash) can Kill us.

Donny Fix

Sunday, June 17, 2007

Tuesday, June 5, 2007

Review "Escaping the Matrix"

Here is a book review I wrote.

Escaping the Matrix- How We the People Can Change the World

Richard Moore

The Cyberjournal Project - 2005

a book review by Don Eichelberger aka Donny Fix

Escaping the Matrix is methodical and informative, but breaks down in its quest to do too much in too thin a volume. It is a valiant effort, none the less, and I think worth the read.

The early parts of Escaping the Matrix are valuable for the historical overview they provide on how we have gotten to where we are today.It takes its name from the cult movie hit, "The Matrix", where people live an illusion while their real bodies hang unconscious, suspended in a solution that extracts the body’s energy to power the machine that produces the matrix. He calls upon us to look past the intricate “reality” presented as fact and see behind the illusion.

It reviews much of the current literature on alternative histories and globalization, drawing from Howard Zinn, David Corten, Francis Moore-Lappe, Jerry Mander and many others, as well as Internet resources. Examples chronicle the story we were being given, and the truth behind the illusion.

World War I, “The War to End All Wars” is shown to be really a plot to extend Western influence in the Middle East for oil, a long-time goal of the ruling elites. In the process, elites were able to establish the Federal Reserve and offer a means for JP Morgan and other bankers to fund the European war effort, with interest, while establishing an economic model for manufacturing money, transforming a cash and carry economy to one of credit cards and consumerism.

After examining the role elites have taken to mold society and extend their power, the conclusion is that society is in crisis, with many of its very life-giving processes threatened by global corporations and their political benefactors. These ruling elites are seen as the central problem, which continue to stand in the way of very logical steps We the People can take to turn things around.

Moore discusses the need to move from a dominator society to a partnership society. He says this will happen when We the People begin to throw off the dominator ethic and learn to act more cooperatively and in the public interest.

Looking back in history, he shows that things were not always defined by a “survival of the fittest” mentality, which rules our thought today. Early agricultural civilizations, which lasted peacefully over thousands of years, show that humanity has it in us to live differently than the dominator, hierarchical cultures that began taking over in the early ages.

This is where the methodical facade begins to loosen. A profound social change will need to take place before the reality this volume wants us to let in is seen. Once that change happens, Reality As We Know It will melt away and We the People will assume control.

Some of the vision here is attractive. It calls for a falling way of the political system, which, at its base is a mechanism developed by the Matrix to divide and conquer, and keep an elite plutocracy in power.

Instead of representatives voted in along party lines to work out compromises from two dominant points of opposition, he envisions ad hoc community councils that will hold facilitated discussions of community problems, called “Harmonization”, and offer solutions that have consensus approval. No candidates. No elections. Just skilled facilitation that can harness the energy in the room to pull people out of their normal thinking patterns and see the wisdom of the group.

Nice vision, but it begs the question of who calls the community meetings, how they are noticed, and what measure is used of accountability. His vision is that, when The Change comes, people will no longer be self-serving, and we will learn the importance of working selflessly on behalf of all.

Still, the model of empowering local action on issues through facilitated community discussion and adoption of common goals is something community groups can begin to do now. It is never a bad thing to empower local activity, especially toward a consensus position that is inclusive and representative of all the stake holders. As with all consensus models, it will work if there is a spirit of wanting to arrive at a common agreement because everyone feels part of something larger and more important that can overcome petty differences.

The anti-nuclear movement provided that sense in the 1970’s and ‘80’s. The power of the energy companies was enormous and the odds against us were high. We organized people to take part, even face arrest, by holding potluck meeting discussions and inviting people to join an affinity group and learn inclusive decision-making using consensus process.

This is a process that we as Greens have begun to explore through what we have been terming “Convergences”. We want to empower local, solution-oriented discussions on issues of urgent social concern and how to affect it.

The anti- nuclear movement had a basis of unity around using direct action to oppose governmental policies that supported nuclear power development. Today, there are so many “presenting problems” that it is difficult to find that kind of solidarity on anything, especially a political solution. Indeed, as mentioned, Moore sees the political process as it exists as consciously divisive in favor of maintaining the status quo, and the rich in power.

We need to identify and work from new bases of unity, recognizing the fundamental thing that unites us is this blue orb that rides us through the cosmos, and will provide for the needs of us all, if not ostentatiously.

During the 2005 Convergence at Bohemian Grove, I was acquainted with a book by George Lakoff, The Elephant in the Room. It came to the same conclusion that we need to find our way past the differences that divide us through our realization that we are all in this together.

Lakoff characterized the major belief that distinguishes a dominator society from more cooperative ones is the sense that people are evil and out to get you and you need to work for your own self interests. If everyone does that, they claim, it distributes the resources of life more efficiently. Caring is a feminine principle that shows weakness and should be avoided for the greater good.

Of course, for progressives, it is care for the whole society, not only the individual, which should motivate individual behavior. A sense that no one should prosper until all are fed. That is anathema to the survival of the fittest mentality, which itself is a part of the Matrix that makes people believe that it is their duty to leave the weak behind.

To move toward a more cooperative ethic, Moore feels we need to redefine current conceptions of progressive and conservative, and especially recognize our commonality around issues like wariness of big, intrusive government, emphasis on local solidarity and self-reliance, and skepticism around mainstream media. With openness and good facilitation, he feels we can overcome our superficial differences and discover our role in creating the power of We the People.

· end-

Tuesday, May 29, 2007

People will join the Uprising when they can hum the Theme Song

In the following article, “Breaking Free of the Cycles of Violence”, I lay out some observations of the problems I see and calls upon all of us to begin to adopt a more critical attitude about the use of violence in its many forms and how we can disengage from this “game”- develop an aware attitude about our acts and how they affect others.

I have been working on his since graduate studies in Social Work in the mid-70’s. I took away much from my studies of systems theory, criminal justice, family and social dynamics and how we find permission for what we do. I have also learned a lot about power relationships from Margo Adair’s writings and workshops, and broadened my awareness of many issues these past 25 years with the help of this odd collection of misfits known as San Francisco.


Don Eichelberger

Violence in currently structured society is pervasive. Literary and Biblical accounts date it from before Cain and Abel, to Satan’s war against God. Western tradition since then has been a story of war and subjugation. Individuals within those histories have faced and continue to face oppression and violence.

If we are to break free of the cycles of control and domination that lead to violence, we need to be aware of how the dynamics of violence feed on themselves and perpetuate and escalate violence.

Identifying individual and social roles in the violence process is important. For as we empower personal action to end our “will for violence”, meaningful social change will begin. Internal change will cultivate a desire to end violence.

Just as current culture is built upon a historical foundation of violence, future culture free of violence will be built upon principles of anti-violence now. We are currently living the history that will hopefully form the underpinnings of a more caring future.

Once the internal will to violence is lessened, we can look at social dynamics of violence more clearly. Institutions that perpetuate and thrive on violence can finally begin to be disassembled.

Violence, as defined here, is the imperative to dominate. It is the culmination of a cycle of events and systems based on making life work like a game, with winners and losers. As the systems feed the violence and make it stronger, so the escalated violence feeds back into those systems, making them more violent, spiraling the cycle.


The cycle begins with the imperative to acquire or preserve property. Whether we are protecting (or coveting) personal property, personal authority over others, or strategic resources for a nation, this dynamic opens the way for violence. This is not the same as acquiring survival needs. Thus, a wolf pack attacking a caribou is not violence.


Once the need to defend property is established, it builds a mindset that widens the definition of property and asserts our right to control it. Propriety rights (read territorial imperative) involves controlling not only real goods, but also people and institutions. The patriarchy claims control of women, children, workers, economic and political processes, and future outcomes.


This is the tactical mechanism for enforcing proprietary rights. It is a system of rewards and punishment that enforces property rights.

Positive reinforcement is given to people & and instituting that consolidate control. Reinforcement is withheld (political contributions, grants, jobs, favors) from entities not toeing the line. Corporal ad capitol punishment, police, military and economic power are the coercive arms of the process.


Will to violence involves creating the apparatus to provide the system with willing and unwilling participants. This is the socialization structure, and it invades all social institutions. Patriarchal western culture centers around creating children obedient to authority- the mission of families, schools and churches. When children gain the age to begin to assert their own authority, two paths open.

The “lucky” ones go on to higher education, where their violence is refined and focused on the competitive art of achievement. Through camaraderie in sports, frat parties and the paper chase, a new generation is trained to “get their share” of power and authority.

Power equates to money, and authority is the control apparatus (largely bureaucratic and/or hierarchical) of the corporation, state, church and military.

The unlucky ones go into military, prisons and/or an oppressive wage slave existence, often in heavy industry, weapons work, mining, etc., or else in menial labor or service jobs. Military and prisons are both “monster factories” that teach and reinforce the most hands—on forms of violence. Class, race and gender divisions in these two paths are stark.

The most brutal violence happens in populations where large numbers of people have been in military (especially combat) situations again socioeconomically determined. The criminal justice system’s injustice is most evident among groups of people unable to afford the price of justice. These systemic inequities feed into the cycles of frustration/rage that precipitates much domestic violence and child abuse.


This critical process creates the battle ground where violence is allowed expression. Patriarchy provides the first institutional cleavage, pitting men against women, Man is superior. This is probably the oldest institutional cleavage, and is woven intrinsically into the fabric of today’ systems in all but a few societies.

Institutional divisionism is rooted in creating an us—them mind set that can perpetuate barriers between people and separate people from the natural world. Its function is to mobilize divisiveness, is an educational process of dividing and controlling. Besides sexism, it manifests as racism, religious bigotry, patriotism, homophobia, regionalism, gang warfare, and all divisionistic practices.

The mind—set is hierarchical—pitting one entity against another using some adopted standard of “worth”. Hierarchical institutions spread this standard- patriarchic family structures, church establishmentarianism, and educational institutions, including schools and the media.

Popular news often focuses on violent attacks (“if it bleeds, it leads”) and helps spread the veil of distrust among individuals. War rhetoric and terrorist sensationalism help drive wedges among nations. The propaganda machine is consciously driven by forces bent on maintaining their power. It is not above product media that stirs deep—seated divisions (e.g. racist stories, sexist advertising and jingoistic movies and music).

Sports as media also helps keep a population aggitable. Passions stay stirred from the World Series to the super bowl, NBA play—offs Stanley Cup and Big Time Wrestling. The Olympics opens the way for the rawest kind of nationalism, giving this divisive dynamic an international flavor. Competitive political battles, long on rhetoric and media imaging and short on substance oils the machinery with its slime.

Besides institutional processes that divide people from each- other, other processes work to separate humans from the natural order. This process, termed “desacralization by Jeremy Rifkin , places humans on a hierarchical scale above the rest of creation. Desacralization feeds back into the beginning of the loop and our definition of property.

High tech medical practices continually try to overcome the world’s most natural processes, birth and death. While some headway is being made to retrieve the art of midwifery and reinstate home birth and “natural birth” as the norm, much of Western medicine continues to negate the body’s role in maintaining health. Hospitals and the funeral industry have placed an antiseptic veil around the most pervasive of human experiences, being born and dying, a isolating us from the profoundness of our mortality.

Food production and distribution further alienate us from the natural cycles. High tech growing has relegated the land to chemical dependency, robbed food of nutrition and placed agricultural workers into a malnourished and oppressed subclass.
The real estate industry has made the life-giving earth into property, where market value transcends intrinsic value, transforming nature into a commodity or a “resource”.

Food processing and marketing help push the violence cycle in several ways. Processed foods, higher in sugar and additives, triggers bodily responses that can lead to agitation and direct violence (e.g. the “Twinkie Defense”). Economic violence is done to the lowest socioeconomic rungs in inner city neighborhoods, usually located farther from large food outlets, where prices are lower. And long bins of cut up animal flesh further separates humans from the suffering of beings “lower” in life’s hierarchy, and further desensitize
humans from the cycles of life at death.

This is not a definitive analysis of institutional divisions that feed the violence. These are illustrations of a wide range of ways the cycle functions, and that is its purpose. Locating our place in that cycle can suggest where we as individual feed into the cycles, and hopefully suggest ways that we can begin to take action in our personal lives to disengage from and dismantle the cycles. Then begins the challenge of creating life—affirming cycles to replace them.