Friday, December 31, 2010

"Have you heard about Peak Oil?" (video)

Well-stated overview of peak oil (using adult language) with knee-jerk conservative talking points undermined logically (imagine that!).



More details:

Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Open-Source Global Village / Resilient Community Construction Set (in 2 minutes)

This is excellent! As soon as I saw it I started Facebooking, Tweeting, Redditing, StumbleUponing, and list-serving. Like, like, like. These folks should be winning awards all over the place.
Well-done!

Welcome to the world of Open Source Ecology (OSE) and the Global Village Construction Set (GVCS), also known as the Resilient Community Construction Set. See openfarmtech.org/​weblog/​2010/​10/​global-village-construction-set-gvcs-in-2-minutes/​ for the corresponding update. We used this in our Buckminster Fuller Challenge application. Pass this on to your friends, and encourage them to subscribe to the True Fans - openfarmtech.org/​index.php?title=True_Fans .

Vote for them at http://makezine.com/tagyourgreen/?id=95


Global Village Construction Set in 2 Minutes from Marcin Jakubowski on Vimeo.

Monday, December 27, 2010

Waste = Food

An inspiring documentary on the Cradle to Cradle design concept of the chemist Michael Braungart and the architect William McDonough. Winner of the Silver Dragon at the Beijing International Science Film Festival 2006. OUTLINE: Man is the only creature that produces landfills. Natural resources are being depleted on a rapid scale while production and consumption are rising in na­tions like China and India. The waste production world wide is enormous and if we do not do anything we will soon have turned all our resources into one big messy landfill.
But there is hope. The German chemist, Michael Braungart, and the American designer-architect William McDonough are fundamentally changing the way we produce and build. If waste would become food for the biosphere or the technosphere (all the technical products we make), produc­tion and consumption could become beneficial for the planet. A design and production concept that they call Cradle to Cradle. A concept that is seen as the next industrial revolution.
• Design every product in such a way that at the end of its lifecycle the component materials become a new resource.
• Design buildings in such a way that they produce energy and become a friend to the environment.
Large companies like Ford and Nike are working with McDonough and Braun­gart to change their production facilities and their products. They realize that economically seen waste is destruction of capital. You make something with no value. Based on their ideas the Chinese government is working towards a circular economy where Waste = Food. An amazing story that will definitely change your way of thinking about production and consumption.


Sunday, December 26, 2010

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Recent Facebook posts

(Fake) Christians identify themselves as enemies of Life and Reality.

www.huffingtonpost.com
Various conservative Christian leaders have united with the Cornwall Alliance for the release of a shocking new 12-part DVD series, "Resisting The Green Dragon," that attempts to debase and discredit the environmental movement by portraying it as "one of the greatest deceptions of our day... 
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Waste not, want not.
What a waste: Britain throws away £10bn of food every year - News, Food & Drink
www.independent.co.uk
A new study has exposed the staggering amount of food thrown away every day by the British public, calculating that the annual total of wasted products adds up to a record £10bn.
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How to grow soil: Gather carbon and lay it down. Plant seeds. Repeat.

permaculture.org.au
Many people living in the suburbs and cities would like to ‘have a go’ at living a more sustainable and satisfying life and yet are daunted by what they view as lack of space and appropriate surroundings. It is easy to say “I just don’t have the space here!” or “Oh, my soil is terrible
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Heat your home with a couple bundles of sticks per day with rocket stoves and mass heat sinks. Northern cultures have been doing this for many centuries.

www.youtube.com
Easy to make with a few friends and things you can find in the barn!


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 Sign the petition if you like the first amendment.

salsa.democracyinaction.org
Stand with Daniel Ellsberg, Barbara Ehrenreich, Arundhati Roy, Noam Chomsky and others--sign FAIR's petition in support of WikiLeaks and freedom of the press
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www.usatoday.com
Classroom desks and office cubicles stand empty. Hunters in blaze orange stand out like drops of bright paint against brown fields. Pub parking lots are crowded with pickups draped with deer carcasses.
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www.truth-out.org
There was a black-out and a white-out Thursday and Friday as over a hundred US veterans opposed to US wars in Afghanistan and elsewhere around the world, and their civilian supporters, chained and tied themselves to the White House fence during an early snowstorm to say enough is enough.
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Time to reclaim the spectrum from the Beckistanians and Limbarfians. See http://www.prometheusradio.org/ ,too
www.huffingtonpost.com
On Saturday, Congress also passed legislation which opens up radio spectrum to independent radio stations. Anyone tracking the rise of Glenn Beck and Rush Limbaugh understands the primary political significance of gaining access to spectrum.
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 If you live in SE Mich hire these folks. You'll be glad you did.
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Favorited on www.youtube.com
Michigan State University hoophouse specialist Adam Montri explains how to make the most from these passive solar greenhouses. In this first installment (of three), featured on Sustainable Farmer.com, Montri explains his use of foamboard insulation...
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 Definitely do this at home. Yours will look appropriate to your local and climate. Undo the corn and soy, Heartland. You can even change the weather. Geoengineer with TREES!!

www.ted.com
TED Talks By piecing together a complex ecological puzzle, biologist Willie Smits has found a way to re-grow clearcut rainforest in Borneo, saving local orangutans -- and creating a thrilling blueprint for restoring fragile ecosystems.
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Farming With Nature - Permaculture with Sepp Holzer

Liked on www.youtube.com
BUY THIS FILM AT www.ecofilm.de! FILM MADE BY MALCOLM ST.JULIAN BOWN - CRYSTAL LAKE VIDEO. It is part of the DVD "Sepp Holzer´s Permaculture" which you can purchase there. This is a clip from the film "Farming With Nature" about permaculture farm...
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Farming With Nature - Permaculture with Sepp Holzer
Favorited on www.youtube.com
BUY THIS FILM AT www.ecofilm.de! FILM MADE BY MALCOLM ST.JULIAN BOWN - CRYSTAL LAKE VIDEO. It is part of the DVD "Sepp Holzer´s Permaculture" which you can purchase there. This is a clip from the film "Farming With Nature" about permaculture farm...
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Prometheus Radio Project
www.prometheusradio.org
Below is a statement from the Prometheus Radio Project on House passage of the Local Community Radio Act and a new accord between legislators pushing to expand low power FM radio and the National Association of Broadcasters
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Liked on www.youtube.com
Sepp Holzer - Permaculture - Farming with Terraces and Raised Beds
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Favorited on www.youtube.com
http://www.permacultureplanet.com Geoff Lawton founding Director of the Permaculture Research Institute talks about Permaculture Water Harvesting techniques, swales and sillways.
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Liked on www.youtube.com
'Eco-Centric', a story by reporter Tim Lee from the 2004 ABC program 'Landline' about permaculture co-originator David Holmgren, whose "pivotal role in developing permaculture has scarcely been recognised"
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Liked on www.youtube.com
Claude William Genest is an actor and TV show host turned "permaculturalist" and Green Party VP. He's passionate about convincing people that a fully sustainable lifestyle is not only easy and good for our health, but can actually be achieved.
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Liked on www.youtube.com
http://www.EatWeeds.co.uk - Martin Crawford of the Agroforestry Research Trust talks about the Forest Garden he planted at Schumacher College, Dartington, South Devon, United Kingdom over 14 years ago.
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Liked on www.youtube.com
The garden that never stops giving. There is a fantastic array of vegetables you can grow in your garden, and not all of them are annuals.


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Liked on www.youtube.com
Eric Toensmeier, author of Perennial Vegetables: From Artichokes to Zuiki Taro, A Gardener's Guide to Over 100 Delicious, Easy-to-Grow Edibles, gives an overview of his perennial backyard vegetable and fruit garden.
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Liked on www.youtube.com
Juice Media Rap News, with Robert Foster. Episode 6 of the Investigative Rap Journalism has dropped: December 2010 and Cablegate has burst open.
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http://preludethenovel.com/ Give this to the deniers in your life.

preludethenovel.com
It’s the summer of 2008, and Cassie Young is a rising star at a prestigious Washington, D. C. energy consulting firm. She’s destined for an early partnership and a big payout from a planned merger with a larger rival. Against the backdrop of spiking oil prices, she uncovers an alarming eyes-only secret...
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The only way fracking can pay for itself is when they make us pay for the mess they make. Drillers are exempt from federal clean air and water regulations under a bill shepherded through Congress in 2005 by none other former
Halliburton CEO Dick Cheney (with whom I'd like to go hunting...oops...sorry Dick...didn't know it was loaded). (Feel free to share my fantasy.)

resourceinsights.blogspot.com
If you externalize the costs of a business activity, it means other people pay the costs--environmental, social and otherwise--and you get the profits. It goes on all the time in extractive industries such as oil and natural gas and mining.
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resourceinsights.blogspot.com
First, you should know that I have an allergy to anything that smacks of geoengineering. And the use of biochar--charred organic matter that can improve soil fertility--to address climate change by interring carbon in farmland on a mass scale strikes me as one of the largest geoengineering projects
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Gene Logsdon describes deer overpopulation with humor and irony.

www.energybulletin.net
I have tried with facts and figures, with myth and melodrama, with hyperbole and histrionics, to show that the deer population is out of control in many places and that this is harmful to the environment. Nothing works. Nice people think it is bad to kill deer and that’s the end of it
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Obama: the best Republican President since Clinton.
Of all the groups in America that need the President of the U.S. on their side, you'd think the last to win a pledge of support would be the U.S. Chamber of Commerce...
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Now they're going after the folks who buy raw milk...are you next? Am I?
www.grist.org
For the last seven years, Rae Lynn Sandvig, a mother of four, has been helping a local dairy farmer distribute unpasteurized milk to 35 or 40 friends and neighbors in the Minneapolis suburbs. Then she got busted by the food police.
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www.youtube.com
Scientist Arlene Blum speaks about the connection between plastic pollution and flame retardants. About TEDx, x = independently organized event In the spirit of ideas worth spreading, TEDx is a program of local, self-organized events that bring people together to share a TED-like experience.
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blog.buzzflash.com
Ordering factory-made pizza may by okay for a cheap date or a family night at the movies, but for small farmers around the world and dairy farmers here at home, Big Pizza is destroying lives.
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www.businessinsider.com
The scariest part is the complacency, says Meredith Whitney.
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www.postcarbon.org
This is the keynote presentation, by Richard Heinberg

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The entire edifice (artifice?) is going to come crashing down as these cave-ins add up. Get out of the way!!! Store food, buy seeds.

www.commondreams.org
Late Monday, a majority of the FCC's commissioners indicated that they're going to vote with Chairman Julius Genachowski for a toothless Net Neutrality rule.
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LSD in their tea? On the Tea Party hit list: Gays, greens, liberals, blacks, Islamics, and Methodists (?) He calls 'em the first Church of Karl Marx. Life is getting very surreal.

www.huffingtonpost.com
Judson Phillips, founder of Tea Party Nation, one of the country's most prominent tea party organizations, really seems to despise the Methodist Church, or as he would call it, "the first Church of Karl Marx."
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Questions: Can we re-adapt enough to reduce dependency on the Old Reality as fast as it's replaced by the New Reality? Offset energy needs as fast as their costs rise beyond ability to pay? Grow increasing amounts of food as fast as price surpasses ability to buy? Find additional incomes in cottage economies (or career changes) & reduce expenses fast enough to keep our homes, pay debts, reskill, & retool?

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Because of a US Supreme Court decision in 1942, the federal government can order you to halt food production in your own back yard by arguing that when you grow your own food, the amount of food you purchase from other food providers is reduced, meaning that your food production impacts interstate trade & therefore can be fully controlled by the federal government. See: http://www.naturalnews.com/030799_food_freedom_

www.naturalnews.com
Feds order farmer to destroy his own wheat crops: The shocking revelations of Wickard vs Filburn
In other words, the federal government claims the authority right now -- even without the Food Safety Modernization Act -- to knock on your door and order you at gunpoint to destroy all the food in your garden, your greenhouse or your farm. They can order you to destroy all seeds in your possession and all food harvested from your own garden. And they can do all this with the full protection of U.S. law by simply citing the precedent set in Wickard v. Filburn in 1942 as ruled by the US Supreme Court.
The [corporate (Dem & Repug)] government is attempting to destroy the local food movement. They are trying to wipe out small, organic farms that compete with corporate agribiz in the same way the FDA has long plotted to destroy natural health supplement companies who compete with Big Pharma. Peak oil will sabotage their ability to do so, but before they've ruined our lives and land? 
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As part of a long-term plan to control content on the internet, the FCC is now attempting to assert authority over the internet in the same way it has long exercised content censorship authority over broadcast television and radio.

www.naturalnews.com
Net neutrality, the FCC, Wikileaks and the future of internet freedom
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Parts 1, 2, and 3. Important news about health freedom.
http://naturalnews.tv/v.asp?v=52B907E96BE2F1882A8D1714E18F8EF7
http://naturalnews.tv/v.asp?v=D95B5E892AA4164EE2C5A6B7D66B3F8B
http://naturalnews.tv/v.asp?v=28F96FBA2A78139B83B7AE6F64D5710D

naturalnews.tv
This is Part 1 of the 3 videos on Mike's speech at the Health Freedom Expo.The USA is not as free as it claims to be when it comes to telling the truth on labels.
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View foreclosures in your town / region. Here's how.
1. Enter a location into Google Maps.
2. Go to the "More" drop-down box at the top of the map and select the "Real Estate" box.
3. After all homes for sale appear, go to the options menu on the left and select "Foreclosure" (deselect "For Sale").
All homes for sale as foreclosures appear as red dots.

Become a Bioneer - The World is Waiting for You.

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Monday, December 20, 2010

Bitter Memories of War on The Way to Jail, By Chris Hedges

Bitter Memories of War on The Way to Jail, By Chris Hedges 


  
ORIGINAL ARTICLE
The speeches were over. There was a mournful harmonica rendition of taps. The 500 protesters in Lafayette Park in front of the White House fell silent. One hundred and thirty-one men and women, many of them military veterans wearing old fatigues, formed a single, silent line. Under a heavy snowfall and to the slow beat of a drum, they walked to the White House fence. They stood there until they were arrested.
The solemnity of that funerary march, the hush, was the hardest and most moving part of Thursday’s protest [1] against the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq. It unwound the bitter memories and images of war I keep wrapped in the thick cotton wool of forgetfulness. I was transported in that short walk to places I do not like to go. Strange and vivid flashes swept over me—the young soldier in El Salvador who had been shot through the back of the head and was, as I crouched next to him, slowly curling up in a fetal position to die; the mutilated corpses of Kosovar Albanians in the back of a flatbed truck; the screams of a woman, her entrails spilling out of her gaping wounds, on the cobblestones of a Sarajevo street. My experience was not unique. Veterans around me were back in the rice paddies and lush undergrowth of Vietnam, the dusty roads of southern Iraq or the mountain passes of Afghanistan. Their tears showed that. There was no need to talk. We spoke the same wordless language. The butchery of war defies, for those who know it, articulation.
What can I tell you about war?
War perverts and destroys you. It pushes you closer and closer to your own annihilation—spiritual, emotional and, finally, physical. It destroys the continuity of life, tearing apart all systems, economic, social, environmental and political, that sustain us as human beings. War is necrophilia. The essence of war is death. War is a state of almost pure sin with its goals of hatred and destruction. It is organized sadism. War fosters alienation and leads inevitably to nihilism. It is a turning away from the sanctity of life.
And yet the mythic narratives about war perpetuate the allure of power and violence. They perpetuate the seductiveness of the godlike force that comes with the license to kill with impunity. All images and narratives about war disseminated by the state, the press, religious institutions, schools and the entertainment industry are gross and distorted lies. The clash between the fabricated myth about war and the truth about war leaves those of us who return from war alienated, angry and often unable to communicate. We can’t find the words to describe war’s reality. It is as if the wider culture sucked the words out from us and left us to sputter incoherencies. How can you speak meaningfully about organized murder? Anything you say is gibberish.
The sophisticated forms of industrial killing, coupled with the amoral decisions of politicians and military leaders who direct and fund war, hide war’s reality from public view. But those who have been in combat see death up close. Only their story tells the moral truth about war. The power of the Washington march was that we all knew this story. We had no need to use stale and hackneyed clich├ęs about war. We grieved together.
War, once it begins, fuels new and bizarre perversities, innovative forms of death to ward off the boredom of routine death. This is why we would drive into towns in Bosnia and find bodies crucified on the sides of barns or decapitated, burned and mutilated. That is why those slain in combat are treated as trophies by their killers, turned into grotesque pieces of performance art. I met soldiers who carried in their wallets the identity cards of men they killed. They showed them to me with the imploring look of a lost child.
We swiftly deform ourselves, our essence, in war. We give up individual conscience—maybe even consciousness—for the contagion of the crowd and the intoxication of violence. You survive war because you repress emotions. You do what you have to do. And this means killing. To make a moral choice, to defy war’s enticement, is often self-destructive. But once the survivors return home, once the danger, adrenaline highs and the pressure of the crowd are removed, the repressed emotions surface with a vengeance. Fear, rage, grief and guilt leap up like snake heads to consume lives and turn nights into long, sleepless bouts with terror. You drink to forget.
We reached the fence. The real prisoners, the ones who blindly serve systems of power and force, are the mandarins inside the White House, the Congress and the Pentagon. The masters of war are slaves to the idols of empire, power and greed, to the idols of careers, to the dead language of interests, national security, politics and propaganda. They kill and do not know what killing is. In the rise to power, they became smaller. Power consumes them. Once power is obtained they become its pawn. Like Shakespeare’s Richard III, politicians such as Barack Obama fall prey to the forces they thought they had harnessed. The capacity to love, to cherish and protect life, may not always triumph, but it saves us. It keeps us human. It offers the only chance to escape from the contagion of war. Perhaps it is the only antidote. There are times when remaining human is the only victory possible.
The necrophilia of war is hidden under platitudes about honor, duty or comradeship. It waits especially in moments when we seem to have little to live for and no hope, or in moments when the intoxication of war is at its pitch to be unleashed. When we spend long enough in war, it comes to us as a kind of release, a fatal and seductive embrace that can consummate the long flirtation with our own destruction. In the Arab-Israeli 1973 war, almost a third of all Israeli casualties were due to psychiatric causes—and the war lasted only a few days. A World War II study determined that, after 60 days of continuous combat, 98 percent of all surviving soldiers will have become psychiatric casualties. A common trait among the 2 percent who were able to endure sustained combat was a predisposition toward “aggressive psychopathic personalities.” In short, if you spend enough time in combat you go insane or you were insane to begin with. War starts out as the annihilation of the other. War ends, if we do not free ourselves from its grasp, in self-annihilation.
Those around me at the protest, at once haunted and maimed by war, had freed themselves of war’s contagion. They bore its scars. They were plagued by its demons. These crippling forces will always haunt them. But they had returned home. They had returned to life. They had asked for atonement. In Lafayette Park they found grace. They had recovered within themselves the capacity for reverence. They no longer sought to become gods, to wield the power of the divine, the power to take life. And it is out of this new acknowledgement of weakness, remorse for their complicity in evil and an acceptance of human imperfection that they had found wisdom. Listen to them, if you can hear them. They are our prophets.
The tears and grief, the halting asides, the catch in the throat, the sudden breaking off of a sentence, is the only language that describes war. This faltering language of pain and atonement, even shame, was carried like great, heavy boulders by these veterans as they tromped slowly through the snow from Lafayette Park to the White House fence. It was carried by them as they were handcuffed, dragged through the snow, photographed for arrest, and frog-marched into police vans. It was carried into the frigid holding cells of a Washington jail. If it was understood by the masters of war who build the big guns, who build the death planes, who build all the bombs and who hide behind walls and desks, this language would expose their masks and chasten their hollow, empty souls. This language, bereft of words, places its faith in physical acts of nonviolent resistance, in powerlessness and compassion, in truth. It believes that one day it will bring down the house of war.
As Tennyson wrote in “In Memoriam”:
Behold, we know not anything;
I can but trust that good shall fall
At last—far off—at last, to all,
And every winter change to spring.
So runs my dream: but what am I?
An infant crying in the night:
An infant crying for the light:
And with no language but a cry.

Sunday, December 19, 2010

Make Mine of Mud

FIRST EARTH is a documentary about the movement towards a massive paradigm shift for shelter — building healthy houses in the old ways, out of the very earth itself, and living together like in the old days, by recreating villages. An audiovisual manifesto filmed over the course of 4 years and 4 continents, FIRST EARTH makes the case that earthen homes are the healthiest housing in the world; and that since it still takes a village to raise a healthy child, it is incumbent upon us to transform our suburban sprawl into eco-villages, a new North American dream.
  
From the FIRST EARTH website: "Because we believe that as many people as possible should have the option of seeing the FIRST EARTH film, regardless of their financial abilities, for a limited time only we are making beta versions of the 12 chapters of the film available over the internet for free! The DVD version of the film has high-quality video and audio and includes extras.
The individual chapters of the film can also be watched separately from one another. It won't have the same effect as watching the whole film from start to finish, but as part of our vision to make the content as accessible as possible, the chapters can be viewed one at a time."

Chapter 1 - What's Wrong With Architecture



Chapter 2 - African Earth
Chapter 3 - American Earth
Chapter 4 - Why Earth
Chapter 5 - Empowering Earth
Chapter 6 - Another Earth Is Possible
Chapter 7 - European Earth
Chapter 8 - Arabian Earth
Chapter 9 - Urban Earth
Chapter 10 - Inner City Earth
Chapter 11 - International Earth
Chapter 12 - Future Earth

Learn more about the resurgence of earthen architecture and Natural Building at the Permaculture Activist book and video catalogs.

Saturday, December 18, 2010

1/4 Century of Permaculture

Take a tour with Joe, Doug and Sam Bullock on their Orcas Island homestead, site of a yearly Permaculture design course. Using nature as their model, they create edges and wildlife habitat, move water through the landscape, promote diversity, and raise an astonishing variety of plants from sub-arctic to tropical -- a wise investment in these climate-changing times.
(From Peak Moment TV)

Thursday, December 16, 2010

The Simple Joy of Unconsciousness

The image shows the material which becomes chicken McNuggets.
Most folks assume that a chicken nugget is just a piece of fried chicken, right? Wrong! Did you know, for example, that a McDonald’s Chicken McNugget is 56% corn?
The following paragraphs are taken directly from The Omnivore’s Dilemma
“The ingredients listed in the flyer suggest a lot of thought goes into a nugget, that and a lot of corn. Of the thirty-eight ingredients it takes to make a McNugget, I counted thirteen that can be derived from corn: the corn-fed chicken itself; modified cornstarch (to bind the pulverized chicken meat); mono-, tri-, and diglycerides (emulsifiers, which keep the fats and water from separating); dextrose; lecithin (another emulsifier); chicken broth (to restore some of the flavor that processing leeches out); yellow corn flour and more modified cornstarch (for the batter); cornstarch (a filler); vegetable shortening; partially hydrogenated corn oil; and citric acid as a preservative. A couple of other plants take part in the nugget: There's some wheat in the batter, and on any given day the hydrogenated oil could come from soybeans, canola, or cotton rather than corn, depending on the market price and availability.
According to the handout, McNuggets also contain several completely synthetic ingredients, quasiedible substances that ultimately come not from a corn or soybean field but form a petroleum refinery or chemical plant. These chemicals are what make modern processed food possible, by keeping the organic materials in them from going bad or looking strange after months in the freezer or on the road. Listed first are the "leavening agents": sodium aluminum phosphate, mono-calcium phosphate, sodium acid pyrophosphate, and calcium lactate. These are antioxidants added to keep the various animal and vegetable fats involved in a nugget from turning rancid. Then there are "anti-foaming agents" like dimethylpolysiloxene, added to the cooking oil to keep the starches from binding to air molecules, so as to produce foam during the fry. The problem is evidently grave enough to warrant adding a toxic chemical to the food: According to the Handbook of Food Additives, dimethylpolysiloxene is a suspected carcinogen and an established mutagen, tumorigen, and reproductive effector; it's also flammable. But perhaps the most alarming ingredient in a Chicken McNugget is tertiary butylhydroquinone, or TBHQ, an antioxidant derived from petroleum that is either sprayed directly on the nugget or the inside of the box it comes in to "help preserve freshness." According to A Consumer's Dictionary of Food Additives, TBHQ is a form of butane (i.e. lighter fluid) the FDA allows processors to use sparingly in our food: It can comprise no more than 0.02 percent of the oil in a nugget. Which is probably just as well, considering that ingesting a single gram of TBHQ can cause "nausea, vomiting, ringing in the ears, delirium, a sense of suffocation, and collapse." Ingesting five grams of TBHQ can kill.”

 Just thought you should know.