November 17, 2011
I was informed yesterday of a poll of voters about this Congressional race that was based on giving biographical sketches of all of the candidates and then asking who they would vote for. How do you think Arnold would have done if early in his first campaign for governor he had been anonymously described in such a poll as a foreign-born actor and bodybuilder who is the son of a Nazi and who wants to be governor?
The notion of capturing me and the importance of my campaign in a 3-4 sentence biographical sketch is hysterically funny!
It’s not about what I’ve done. It’s about the kind of person I am, how I see things, the tools in my toolbox, what I’m going to get done, and most importantly, the attitudes I carry with me. It’s not about my biography. It’s about where I see the limits of possible change versus how far the others think they can push things (not nearly as far!). It’s about the choices we’re going to make about what we are going to build over the next ten years. I say it’s Ecotopia Now or Never. None of the other candidates come close to this position.
It’s about how we relate to the large numbers and different life experiences of hundreds of thousands of people in our district, and how we relate to the people of the nation and the rest of the planet. My whole life, I’ve been out with the people in our towns and forests actually fixing things, and not just with the activists and pundits. When you’re fighting clearcuts everything is real and immediate. You have to turn on a dime. If you don’t kick ass in time it all becomes far too real: a massively huge gaping wound called a clearcut. It becomes very clear that things can be done too late. Extinction is forever. There are no jobs on a dead planet.
I’ve worked in all of the mass and activist forms of media for forty years too, since I was trained in journalism for four years in junior and senior high school, and editor in chief and chief photographer of both the junior and senior high school papers. I’ve worked in radio since I was New Dimensions Radio co-founder Will Noffke’s business partner and event producer at the Shared Visions New Age/Deep Ecology/Green Politics event center and the New Horizons show on KPFA in 1986 and another program called Continuum, on through my KMUD work of the last four years. I started making movies in the Boy Scouts when I was 12 and have been a videographer/editor/writer/producer/presenter since 1988 with my work on 60 Minutes and hundreds of TV stations around the world. I Invented Earth First! campaign field videography. I’ve been a professional level photographer since I was 14, then in the school newspapers, nature, rock concert photography, Ansel Adams school instruction at UCSD in the 1970s where I got my minor in Communications, studying media criticism with Herb Schiller, Herbert Marcuse, Will Wright, Stanley Aronowitz and many others.
I’ve produced, engineered, and assisted in making music and talk albums in Earth First! and was the head of the Pop Events committee of the Campus Program Board at UCSD which produced the rock concerts for the university (King Crimson, Pretenders, Ian Hunter & Mick Ronson, Taj Mahal, Phoebe Snow, Don McLean, Ry Cooder, etc.). I’ve been a global internet networker for 15 years still in touch with hundreds of scientists, activists, lawyers, media people and elected officials, especially in the Green parties on all seven continents. That’s the TV I watch. I broke Julia Butterfly’s story nationally. I invented a musical genre, Gaiabilly (which will preserve and promote an entire body of art we call Earth First! music) and coined the meme Climate Crisis. As you’ve noticed, I have the most extensive and best archive of Earth First! media and culture in the world, all shot/produced/collected as a lowbagger. I helped invent US Green Politics 30 years ago helping co-organize and run both the Citizens party in 1980 and Green party in 1985.
And Republicans seem to like me and work with me too. I think they see the Eagle Scout with six palms. It helps that I’ve actually saved the lives of real people in my district, veterans and other homeless people. Still doing it too while running for office. I organized a winter homeless shelter out of nothing with 5 or 6 “church ladies.” I’m a Prop. 215 patient and have lived in the marijuana culture of the Emerald Triangle for over two decades. This is the future for the four rural counties of the district, something the San Francisco Bay Area candidates are clueless about. This is a crucial difference. I’m one of the main organizers inventing our new government here in southern Humboldt, the incorporation of Emerald City. This is so we can write our own medical marijuana, diesel dope, and post-prohibition regulations and run our own Eco-city. I was one of three northern Californians who actually did bring labor and environmentalists together: the steelworkers, the Maxxam timber workers, and Earth First! As part of the Headwaters forest campaign we created the Headwaters Fund which has supplied millions of dollars to local businesses and nonprofits for over a decade now.
The BBC considers me a “World Historic Figure” as the as the world’s first anti-GMO grassroots organizer and ecoteur (or crop puller as they called it). That campaign bankrupted the GMO firm (so I’ve taken down a corporation) and has prevented the test or commercial release of GMO bacteria into the atmosphere around the globe ever since 1987.
But here’s what’s key:
If you wait too long to evacuate when a tsunami is heading your way–if you don’t get far enough away, fast enough–then it doesn’t matter if you’re heading in the right direction. You’re just as dead as if you stayed on the beach. If you don’t see a problem, you won’t find an answer for it. If you don’t see the order of magnitude of the problem, likewise you won’t design and organize/fight for big enough change in time.
My whole life I’ve been emerged in the planetary ecology scientific, activist & legal communities and actually waged war fighting Republican and Democratic politicians, presidents and bureaucrats with the best people on the planet for forty years: David Brower, Dave Foreman, Mike Roselle, John Seed, Michael Soule, Gore Vidal, Jeremy Rifkin, Didney Lens, Petra Kelly, Rudolf Bahro, Richard Register (Green Cities), Charlene Spretnak, Danny Moses, Peter Berg (Bioregionalism)… I Helped put together and organize campaigns for at least three initiatives/legislation, GMO liability requirements, Forests Forever and the Citizens Party affordable housing initiative (which would have grabbed back for the state half of Reagan’s tax cuts to create a permanent loan pool to buy affordable housing-so I’ve been working on taxing the rich for a long time).
I became an actual oceans scientist at 15 during a special program during my two summers in high school (as a student and then as a TA) and then another year as an assistant instructor for the Institute of Inshore Marine Biology with Barry E. Shapiro. I’ve been studying and focusing on the climate crisis for 30 years starting with the Scripps Institution of Oceanography scientists I studied and worked with, such as Roger Revelle and Burt Kobyashi, as a UCSD undergrad, and worked specifically the polar ice situation for 15 years doing my own research which was published in Earth Island Journal. Australian scientist of the year Tim Flannery says no one else in the world predicted the breakup of the Larsen B ice shelf in 2002. I have a feeling for the organism. I’ve been and still am and always will be Earth First! That’s frickin’ important! And I’m a bioregionalist. I have the whole planet in my toolbox.
I’m not a famous media figure because for me for 54 years it has always been about the cause and the message–not about promoting me. I’m a guy whose shown up to fix the things and people that the corporations and politicians have screwed up.
These are just some of my background life experiences in ecology and media work, studies, and activism…
If any of the others win, we’re dead.
As far as I can see no other campaign on the planet is even trying to make the changes on the scale and with the rapiditiy that’s necessary to keep the polar ice sheets intact, and that is the Bottom Line!
Do you think they included all of this in their poll’s “biographical sketch”?