Greetings to my visiting friends. I use this space to comment on important subjects of the day, on the continuing evolution of my writing, my video and my photography work, to acknowledge good ideas and some good people I've crossed paths with along life's journey, and on stuff that's just plain curious or fun.
Monday, October 13, 2014
My name is Earthmanpdx
I was looking for a handle for my twitter account. A number
of ideas came to mind. The one that I liked best was Earthmanpdx.It is an audacious way to identify one’s
self.But, when I discovered that no one
else was using it, I figured, ‘why not me?’
What does Earthmanpdx stand for? It means I am a citizen of the Earth first
and foremost, and I happen to live in pdx, which is code for Portland, Oregon, USA.Yes, I have a USA passport, and I grew up pledging
allegiance. I do identify as an American citizen, but even more so, I see
myself as a citizen of the Earth. My first obligation is to nurture and
preserve the Earth and its living biosphere. That, to me, is the principle
responsibility of every human; protect
the integrity of our planet’s living fabric. Job one for every human person on Earth should be to
do no harm.
For the longest time, humans have taken for granted the rich
living bounty of our planet. Up until a few decades ago, the
planet’s biosphere was resilient despite
the ravages of human exploitation.When
I was born, the planet’s population was about 2.5 billion human beings. Now, in
2014, in just the past sixty-some years, the number of humans on Earth has
nearly tripled to 7.3 billion,and
demographers believe by the end of this century we could have nearly 11
billion, all needing food, water, and shelter at a minimum.The biosphere we all depend on, the only one
we have, is suffocating.Human demand
isoutstrippingthe planet’s ability to provide.An unbiased examination of the facts leaves no room for any other
I recently read that since 1970, less than fifty years ago,
the number of non-human life forms on the Earth has dropped by 52%.In the same time frame, the human population
on Earth doubled. The correlation couldn’t be more obvious.
We dump millions of tons of our cultural waste into our oceans. We
have stripped the sea’s fish stocks to the pointof collapse.We are using up the planet’s aquifers and fresh water resources.We have cut down vast areas of forestland. We
have replaced our biologically resilient landscapes with industrial monocultures.We are consuming massive quantities of coal
and oil, fossil forms of energy that have choked the atmosphere with pollutants
that are directly linked to an unprecedented planetary warming.
People are the problem. We are taking too much of the planet’s
rapidly dwindling resources.Mindless
exploitation is no longer an option.We
must mend our ways. It’s either that, or doom future generations to a vastly diminished
quality of life.
Many millions of
people around the world recognize that humanity is in severe need of a course
correction. Unfortunately, the vast majority of the earth’s population
continue, business as usual. They still don’t get it.That must change.Reaching a tipping point in global human awareness
has to be the primary focus.
When I chose to identify myself as Earthmanpdx, it is
because I want to be a change agent fully engaged in the process of charting a
worthy future for humanity.I am looking
for ways to draw people to a life-affirming worldview that respects nature and
is sustainable over the long term.
The good news is there are worthy answers to nearly all of the
major global challenges we face.Human
induced atmospheric warming, and the sea level rise, weather extremes,and other global scale consequences that go
with burning fossil fuels, can dramatically be curbed by choosing a rapid
transition to inexhaustible forms of clean energy like solar
and wind.We have the ability to
provide reproductive choice to every person, thus slowing the growth of the
human population. We can create a regulatory framework for restoring our water,
forest, and ocean resources.We can
create a human culture on Earth that assigns proper value to nature and focuses
on building a future that can be sustained for generations to come.To some extent, it is already happening, but
not fast enough.The impediments to
progress are much less technical than they are political.
In America, the Constitution says that government is
supposed to be ‘of, by, and for the people’.In fact, it no longer works that way.Democracy has been replaced by a plutocracy, in which a handful of very
rich bankers, billionaires, and multi-national corporations use their money and
influence to buy politicians and shape the public policy they want.
For any chance at a better, more sustainable future for all life
on Earth, the first order of business
must be to push back against the stagnation and corruption that has taken over
our economic and political system.
Achieving the level of transformation that is sorely needed
will be no easy task. A handful of big
money manipulators have amassed an incredible amount of political power.They will not go away quietly.
So, what is the prescription for renewal recommended by Earthmanpdx?
An initiative called Move to Amend is growing across America.
It’s agenda is simple and straightforward. Move to Amend is entirely about building a grassroots movement that calls for
a Constitutional Amendment that would strip corporations and the rich of their
ability to unduly influence our economy and our political process.A proposed 28th Constitutional Amendment
would say that 'Corporations are not
People' and ‘Money is property, not Speech’.
There has never been a law that said ‘corporations are
people’. They are in fact, state
chartered legal fictions that are supposed to be accountable to the
people.Likewise, the idea of ‘money
being speech’ has never been codified in law, instead, it is a corrosive idea
that gained legitimacy through legal precedence created by a series of corrupt,
high court decisions.
I believe that Move to Amend is focused on the critical
struggle of our time. Blunting corporate power.An amendment that ends corporate personhood and clearly defines money as
'property not speech', must become a national
calling.No matter where one’s activism
is focused – social justice, economic fairness, environmental protection - the
common thread that offers the best hope for achieving positive change is a 28th
Constitutional Amendment as presented by Move to Amend.
best years are behind me. In thetime that I have remaining, I intend to be
Earthmanpdx, serving as a change agent for a better future by championing Move
to Amend’s Constitutional agenda.I urge
every person to think about who they are, consider the reality that we all face,
then join the movement to achieve a constitutional amendment that says ‘Corporations
are not People’ and ‘Money is not Speech’.