Paul Haeder, Author

writing, interviews, editing, blogging

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OSU grad student researches the furry animal’s Oregon re-introduction

Even in the vast and mysterious reaches of the sea we are brought back to the fundamental truth that nothing lives to itself.

— Rachel Carson

“I’ve never lived on the West Coast, but I really have absolutely fallen in love with the place.”

Dominque Kone and I are talking at the Hatfield Marine Science Center, covering a lot of ground in the 28-year-old’s narrative, from early years in small towns like Blue Hill and Bucksport, Maine, and then his undergraduate days in the big town (50,000) of Waterville where Kone entered Colby College on a track and field scholarship.

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The beauty of going deep on these stories is that readers learn how the NCAA Division III’s fastest athlete in the 100- and 60-meter dashes finds himself in Washington DC working for the PEW Charitable Trust and goes on to set down roots in Corvallis with much time spent completing a master’s in science at the Oregon Coast.

We first meet at an American Cetacean Society gathering where Kone is giving a large audience a thorough and enlightening rundown on his work as a community ecologist studying the possibility of the sea otter finding a home back on Oregon Coast’s waters.

These iconic tool-using mammals, sometimes reaching five feet in length and hitting 100 pounds, have not been a presence on our coastline for decades. Many residents and naturalists might see another member of the weasel family scurrying around the tidewaters and creeks, but those mammals are officially river otters.

Dominque (Dom) Kone’s work is tied to interdisciplinary approaches studying a species like the sea otter (Enhydra lutris).

The Power Point’s title is a typically erudite one associated with grad work: “An Ecological Assessment of a Potential Sea Otter Reintegration to Oregon” under the auspices of the Geospatial Ecology of Marine Megafauna Lab.

Communicating Science His Gift

The powerful element to Kone’s presentation is his at-ease presence and articulateness with a crowd that considers itself amateur biologists.

In the parlance of OSU and other institutions, “transdisciplinary” and “interdisciplinary” define what Dom and his two project fellows are doing to make science much more vigorous and relevant across many disciplines.

This sea otter project is part of a grant OSU received from the National Science Foundation, spurring multiple disciplines in higher education to study the risk and uncertainty in marine science. Dom is one fellowship recipient in his team of three – the others are a social scientist and geneticist.

While the reader will get some of the history surrounding sea otters on the Oregon Coast — from Warrenton to Brookings — and then their localized extirpation and subsequent reintroduction and disappearance, two vital questions in the fellows’ research have been posed and require answering:

  1. Does Oregon have suitable habitat for reintroducing the sea otter given the overlapping human activities that have developed over time?
  2. What are the potential ecological effects of sea otter reintroduction?

Dom makes it clear that those questions are much more complicated and overlaid with other factors related to potential resource competition, such as interactions with human-based fisheries, which target the same food sources otters do. Add to the mix a marine mammal with the sea otter’s history in California, Washington, Canada and Alaska both positively and negatively affecting the ecosystem separate from Homo Sapiens’ needs.

Systems Thinking, Holistic Practices

“My advisor is a professor in the fisheries and wildlife department, but I study within the marine resource management program.” That means Dom has a thesis/project adviser and committee members that include two OSU faculty — a marine ecologist and public policy expert — in addition to an Oregon Department of Fisheries and Wildlife (ODFW) shellfish manager and a sea otter ecologist from Halifax, Nova Scotia.

The reason inter- and multi-disciplinary approaches are a hot topic, Dom says, is “because a lot of issues facing resource managers involving the environment are really complex to address requiring multiple disciplines to find solutions to all the challenges they face.”

For Dom, who went from four years in the highly diverse and energized DC, to our laid back Corvallis and Coast, he says he has been surprised how gratifying it’s been to be in a place where he can listen to the interests and needs of so many people directly affected by environmental policies and ecological and climatic changes.

He went from a kid who had no robust science classes or ecology clubs in high school in Maine, to this sparkplug of a graduate student working on cutting-edge research. Both places, Maine and Oregon, have that one identity issue in common: He was one of three black students in his high school (one was his sister), and he is often the only black student in an OSU classroom.

He touts the added-value of the interdisciplinary project: “I gained skills I wasn’t expecting, like being a good teammate, collaboration and accountability. And I’ve benefited from interacting with people from different disciplines. I’ve increased my communication skills and learned valuable conflict resolution tactics.”

A perfect toolbox for anyone working on endangered species and environmental policies while attempting to integrate the public’s and business stakeholders’ perceptions, needs and demands.

Read on as Deep Dive on line.

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In otter news: part II

We talk about conservation biology, ecology, environmental issues and what needs to be done to address many coalescing problems we face on the Central Oregon Coast, in the state and around world in general.

“It’s really important to look at connections and feedbacks,” Dom says as we cover myriad topics. “We need to understand the ecological processes. And scientists can play an important role in listening to stakeholders and their values and concerns. As a scientist and educator, I see my role as educating people on how complex these impacts and variables are in our ecosystem.”

Continually, we talk about the idea that for too long, humans have not considered themselves as part of the natural world. That dominating role has created untold damage to ecosystems that are at the same time both resilient and fragile.

I liken it to arrogance and myopia.

Whether it’s DDT used to kill insects or bringing the American beaver close to extinction, the unintended consequences are apparent to ecologists like Dominque: The American bald eagle almost went extinct due to the DDT causing eggshells to thin and the unhatched chicks to die under the crushing weight of their parents. The eagle’s recovery – largely by banning DDT – is a success story.

For the beaver, much of the East Coast waterways and standing ponds and lakes (wetlands and storm buffers) were created by the beaver, that once numbered 200 million in North America. The fur trade brought them close to absolute extinction. About five percent of the total number of beavers before the fur trade now lives in North America (10 million).

Moreover, the fur trade almost brought sea otters to the brink of extinction, Dom states. There were around 150,000 to 300,000 sea otters before heavy hunting, dating from 1741 to 1911, brought the world population to 1,000 to 2,000 individuals living in a fraction of their historic range.

There’s an international ban on hunting them, and from what Dom has studied, we have more than 50 years of managing them through conservation efforts. Dom tells the naturalists with the American Cetacean Society that reintroduction programs into previously populated areas have aided some of the rebounding.

These translocation efforts, from 1965 to ’72, shuttled sea otters form the Central Coast of Alaska to other parts of that state and then British Columbia, Washington and Oregon.

These creatures are enigmatic and iconic. We surmise that the last native sea otter in Oregon was shot and killed in 1906. Those 95 sea otters transplanted from Amchitka Island, Alaska, to the Southern Oregon Coast were our best chance at recovery. Sightings make the scientific journals — in 2004, a male sea otter hung out for six months at Simpson Reef off of Cape Arago. Then, in 2009, another male sea otter was spotted in Depoe Bay. Both otters could have traveled to from either California or Washington

“Within five or six years, the otters mysteriously disappeared,” Dominque states.

He nuances the Alaska population’s vitality by pointing out that maybe three of the stocks are doing well, while the Southwestern Alaskan stock is threatened. Ironically, in 1970, another OSU graduate student, Ron Jameson, monitored the 95 otters while they were here, with sightings along the 276 miles of Oregon coast.

“Very few sea otter carcasses were found on the Oregon coast,” Dom said. “Mortality can’t explain their disappearance.”

Otters Doing What Otters Must Do – Explore!

Other explanations for their exit from our coast could be “otters were doing what otters do – disperse and explore other locations.” The mystery spurs scientists to find answers: Lack of food? Lack of habitat? Human disturbances?

Dom is deft at fielding questions from the crowd of 35, and he explains how conservation biologists consider sea otter recovery an important link in marine conservation. The interrelationship of one species with the total ecological health of other species was first named in 1969 by Robert Paine who looked at the sea otter and other fauna as “keystone species.”

The Central Oregon Coast should think of kelp forests as one key benefit of sea otters making a comeback: These are nurseries for many different aquatic species. Kelp forests give protection to juvenile aquatic animals, who would otherwise be vulnerable targets.

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Here’s the interconnectivity of otters and kelp forests: Sea urchins multiply, forming barrens that sweep the ocean floor consuming entire stands of kelp.

The keystone element to this species Dominque and his cohorts are studying is that since the sea urchin is a main food source for the sea otter, the mammal acts as “protector of the kelp beds.”

We call this “balancing the ecosystem,” so by keeping urchin populations down, the kelp thrives, and the result is other aquatic species are able to mature and live in their natural environment, and sea otters, a threatened species, are able to survive.

The California and Aleutian Island sea otter populations have either declined or plateaued, and therefore the sea otter remains classified as a threatened species.

This otter research project is really a look at how viable a recovery or restoration project is for Oregon — considering all the implications of so-called human resource management.

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The graduate student is looking into the entire suite of unanticipated outcomes or impacts a sea otter reintroduction program might have on the following individual and intersecting issues: law and policy; ecology; fisheries management; politics, economics; social and cultural stakes; genetics; even oceanographic.

Interestingly, while Dom is working as a scientist pulling together the history, biology, fisheries management and public policy sides to Oregon’s possible sea otter reintroduction, he is quick to point out powerful indigenous groups’ spiritual-centered connection to the sea otter, such as the Confederated Tribes of the Siletz Indians and the Coquille Indian Tribe. “We also are looking at what restoring the cultural connections to the sea otter before tribes were forced from coastal lands will do for those communities.”

This once prevalent species comes with it more than its tool-making and cute coastal presence. We have stakeholders with the urchin, Dungeness crab, mussel and clam fisheries. We have all these other human activities, too, along the coast that might make the recovery effort difficult: pollution, shipping lanes, recreation and toxins.

The lynchpin for much of my life interviewing people is what makes them tick and from where they came: family, significant emotional events, perspectives honed by trials and tribulations.

Diversity Sets the Standard

Dom’s parents met at Husson University in Bangor, both on basketball scholarships – she having been a white woman with many generations tied to Maine, and his father an African from the Ivory Coast.

Dom says he identifies strongly as a black man, not as bi-racial. While he got interested in science watching religiously PBS’s Nature, he did have opportunities in our country’s national parks through an outing club.

He was the only black child and teen in many situations. When he went to Colby College as a star sprinter and long jumper, he still did not experience much diversity there. It was when he got to DC, as an intern for the National Wildlife Federation and then later as a policy researcher at PEW, that he got a taste of real diversity.

“Sometimes as the only person of color in a room, I have to be aware I am not just representing myself, but my race, yet I don’t want to represent a group since that group is very diverse, too.”

Dom is aware that he can be put into situations of borderline tokenism, and that he has to understand that for younger people, seeing someone like him excel in the sciences gives younger people of color not only a role model but proof that there are inroads being made to accept a more diverse student body, faculty and scientific community.

“Diversity and inclusivity are almost buzz words these days,” he said. “Getting into a program like this one doesn’t solve all the problems. Half the battle is won, part of the systemic hurdle to overcome, but they have to make people of color feel valued and heard, so they will want to stay.”

Dom defends his thesis in December and says he wants to step back from academia for a while, hoping to work in a science policy arena, for a non-profit or governmental agency. He likens his work experience and academic background as a good foundation to be a “boundary spanner” – that is, someone working on scientific research but also developing public policy and drawing on his communications skills to be a workshop facilitator.

“I’ve always wanted to get into endangered species,” he said. “It is amazing, though, how much work goes into any one species, let alone the ecology as a whole where that species interacts with other species.”

One thing we can gather from Dom – he is highly motivated to understand “intersectionalities” in the environmental world. The sea otter seems like a talisman for him to move forward.

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Much like the rain forests of the Amazon, Kelp forests are considered by scientists to be one of the more effective sequesters of carbon dioxide. The linkage between sea otters, sea urchins, kelp forests and ultimately climate change mitigation are coming to the fore.

“A recent study shows kelp forests with higher sea otters present can absorb up to 12 times more CO2 from the atmosphere than if they were just left to the urchin explains the linkage between sea otters, sea urchins, kelp forests, and ultimately climate change mitigation,” according to the organization Friends of the Sea Otter.

Count Dominque, 28, as one of those sea otter’s friends.

they wanted to leave during Reagan, Bush, and now many during this Trump Dunce Period, but in fact, Yankee Doodle Dandies and Stars and Bars never leave their DNA behind when they attempt to game other people’s systems

Words, and spin, and the Mad Men and Mad Women of this perverse consumerism and cultural wasteland tied to Predatory Capitalism, Celebrity Culture and Americans who have perpetual ennui because of their perpetual dumb-downing, perpetual swallow of exceptionism as a core value of the American Project To Take Over the World.

So many, and they are mostly center or center left (sic) people who want to head out of la-la land and end up in some paradise where their Social Security earnings and savings and investment accounts can stretch so they can lie in, again, someone else’s paradise.

I get disgusting things all the time, just to gauge how much more disgusting the USA becomes minute by minute — you know, Fox un-News, or crap from Rachel Maddow or CNN, or any of the mainstream media or Alt-right crap, I will peruse to see just how effective the Edward Bernays Form of Marketing and Brainwashing is turning out.

International Living, that’s yet another example of the crass — “I have mine, and you can just deal with it” as they want to parachute into other people’s lands and utilize the higher income and money savings to live a comfortable life somewhere quaint, sleepy, near a beach, palm trees, rum, topless men and women walking around.

I’ve put my money where my mouth is on this one. I bought two lots in this gold-standard community myself.

The community is in Fortim, a little town on Brazil’s northeast coast. I wrote yesterday about why I believe that now is the time to buy Brazil.

There are three megatrends happening right now in Brazil…

Brazil is rebounding from an economic downturn—this is a chance to ride the country’s next phase of substantial growth.

The U.S. dollar is extremely strong compared to the Brazilian real right now. As I write, one dollar is worth 3.96 reals. In April 2014, one dollar only bought 2.24 reals. This currency play essentially lets us buy real estate for a sizeable discount.

This particular deal taps into the Path of Progress I’ve been following for years on this coast.

My first investment in Brazil was in Fortaleza, a booming city on this northeast coast. In 2008 and 2009, I, along with members of my Real Estate Trend Alert group, bought condos close to the boardwalk in Fortaleza while prices were low. As Brazil’s economy roared ahead and middle-class numbers soared, real estate prices shot up. A member of my group bought a condo in Fortaleza for 215,000 reals. He later sold for 450,000 reals—more than doubling his money.

Here are other sites on how to find the best place as an American or Western to live, with or without thrills —

The 13 Best Countries for Americans Who Want to Live Abroad

Ranking the Most Dangerous Countries for Americans To Visit

Look, this is where the white race is, or the Western Culture — looking to leave their homes of conquest — for some happy and safe (sic) Third World (under-developed, developing, exploitable) country to create an enclave of Western mindset, judgement, values, and disgusting influences. As Andre Vltchek says

It is no secret that Western migrants are taking advantage of poverty, low prices, and corrupts legal systems. Their arrival raises prices for housing and land. It leaves millions of local people literally homeless, and it raises the prices of food and basic services for the local population.

In a way, people in many poor countries get robbed twice: by Western corporations, and then again, by Western migrants.

In one of the hotels in Sao Paulo, Brazil, in a bar late at night, I overheard a conversation between a visiting Swiss businessman and his Chilean counterpart:

“You know, those immigrants that we call ‘paperless’”, lamented Swiss man. “It’s too many of them… too many! We should just throw them directly to the sea; we should drown them! We don’t need such scum in Europe.”

A few days earlier, my friend, an Ecuadorian government official based in Quito, told me a story:

“Lately, many Europeans keep coming to Ecuador and to other Latin American countries, searching for jobs, trying to migrate. Their economies are collapsing, but there is no humility when they come here, only arrogance. Another day, a Spaniard came to me, applying for a job. I asked him for his CV. He looked at me with total outrage: ‘But I am a Spaniard!’ he shouted. ‘So what?’ I replied. ‘These days are over, comrade; days when just being a white European man would be enough to land you a job anywhere in Latin America!’”

On the touristy island of Kos, German tourists, showing indifference, even spite, are stuffing themselves on fresh seafood, downing gallons of local wine. This year, “Greece is bit cheaper than other destinations”, a German couple at Athens’s airport tells me. “That is why we come”. Few meters from the seafront of Kos, a local hospital literally collapsed, with no ability to save human lives.

On top of it, thousands of destitute refugees from destabilized countries (destabilized by the West) from all over the world are now everywhere, at every corner of Kos. It feels like “the last supper of Europe”, repulsive orgy of indifference, consumerism, and moral decay.

But no artist bothers to depict it, as there is hardly any political art left in Europe.

So the International Living is talking about Brazil — and we know how bad off Brazil is, but read this guy’s bullshit: “Why I’m Betting on Brazil” by Ronan McMahon

The timing on this deal is perfect. But you might not think it from watching your news feed…

In recent years, Brazil has made headlines around the world for crisis and corruption.

But that façade of scandal has always masked massive opportunities…opportunities I and members of my Real Estate Trend Alert group have successfully acted on time and again. (Find out how to become a member of this group, here).

I’ve written repeatedly about the sound fundamentals underlying any Brazil play.

Brazil is an agricultural superpower. It’s one of the world’s biggest exporters of soy, beef, coffee, orange juice, and chicken. The country sits on a huge aquifer, so there’s plenty of water to support agricultural activities. And, with a massive amount of unused land, plenty of capacity for future growth. This taps into two demographics: world population growth and the rise of the middle class.

The United Nations predicts the world population will add a billion more people by 2030, and another billion by 2050. That’s 2 billion more mouths to feed.

And as the middle class grows, they buy more meat, use more fuel, and ultimately want more of what Brazil produces. Brazil manufactures everything you could think of—from shoes to cutlery to cars to planes. It’s home to companies like brewer AmBev, aerospace firm Embraer, and JBS, the largest meat processing company in the world.

Rich in minerals like gold and copper, Brazil is also an energy giant. Oil and gas production is expected to reach 7.5 million barrels a day in 2019, making Brazil one of the world’s top producers.

Brazil is the eighth-largest economy in the world, ahead of Italy, Russia, and Canada. Back in 1960, its gross domestic product (GDP) was only $15 billion. Today, it’s more than $2 trillion.

I’m not the only one that thinks the time is right to buy Brazil.

These deal makers and deal seekers do not care about the people in those countries, but they do care about real estate, cheap this and cheap that and gorging on their own insides. Nothing like these article headlines from the Intercept to put a kink in the old International Living’s underwear:

THE BOLSONARO GOVERNMENT’S AGGRESSIVE RESPONSE SHOWS WHY OUR REPORTING ON THE SECRET BRAZIL ARCHIVE IS SO VITAL

On the Front Lines of Bolsonaro’s War on the Amazon, Brazil’s Forest Communities Fight Against Climate Catastrophe

Bernie Sanders Calls for Brazil’s Judiciary to Release Lula in Wake of Corruption Exposure

Watch: Interview With Brazil’s Ex-President Lula From Prison, Discussing Global Threats, Neoliberalism, Bolsonaro, and More

Bad Chemistry Brazil’s Pesticide Industry Is Creating Massive PFOS Contamination

Brazil’s Jair Bolsonaro Meets With Donald Trump to Consolidate Their Far-Right Alliance

In Jair Bolsonaro’s Brazil, Far-Right Billionaire’s Media Empire Is Being Exploited to Investigate Journalists — Including The Intercept

Son of Jair Bolsonaro, Fascist Leading Brazil’s Presidential Polls, Tweets Fake Poster Linking LGBT People to Pedophiles

Brazil’s Marielle Franco Denounced Three Murders in the Days Before Her Assassination. These Are the Stories.

NOVA: If this region—New Orleans, the wetlands, and all—were a patient in the hospital, how would you describe them? At what stage are they?

IVOR VAN HEERDEN: Close to death.

[…]

There is the potential for extremely high casualties—people not only killed by flying debris, drowning in the soup, but also just imagine, how do we rescue the survivors? Unlike a river flood, it doesn’t come up and go down. The water stays. And it stays for months and months and months. How do you rescue all of these people? If there’s 200,000 survivors, you get 20,000 out a day, that’s 10 days. So how are they going to hang on? You know, this is one of the big nightmares: how do you rescue those survivors? What are they going to need?

They’re going to need to be detoxified. And this is Louisiana—it’s 100 degrees Fahrenheit, 100 percent humidity. Putrefaction and fermentation go on very, very rapidly. So those folk are going to be surrounded by the proverbial witches’ brew of toxins.

Ron Mikulaco, left, and his nephew, Brad Fernandez, examine a crack caused by an earthquake on highway 178 Saturday, July 6, 2019, outside of Ridgecrest, Calif. Crews in Southern California assessed damage to cracked and burned buildings, broken roads, leaking water and gas lines and other infrastructure Saturday after the largest earthquake the region has seen in nearly 20 years jolted an area from Sacramento to Las Vegas to Mexico. (AP Photo/Marcio Jose Sanchez)

I have talked about (written in a hundred articles and blogs) this single moment in a political prostitute’s career that defines not only the inhumanity of that person, but also his/her backers, his or her “people,” and those who continue to pad pockets with bribery money.

Little W Bush voting to vote down legislation for making chemical companies to put into their mixes of poisons chemical markers (only in 12 common/major poisons) that would help medical experts treat poisoned youth, babies, and adults when coming into an ER catatonic or seizing. He did the veto because the chemical purveyors lobbied, threw money at candidates of whoring support, and to PR spin-masters who lie lie lie to confuse the public. Those built-in lifesavers would cost some money. Profit Profit Profit Prostitution Prostitution Prostitution.

Remember Emmett Till, and his mother Mamie, and seeking a civil rights investigation into her son’s torture-murder-dismemberment from that bastion of Presidential Prostitution, Ike Eisenhower? That crappy general wouldn’t even open Emmett’s mother’s letter, or thousands of letters supporting an investigation into her son’s murder. No response from that five star mercenary:

Mamie Till-Mobley telegram
A telegram from Emmett Till’s mother, Mamie Till-Mobley, to President Dwight D. Eisenhower requests justice in the investigation of her son’s death. The White House did not respond. [Image courtesy Dwight D. Eisenhower Presidential Library, eisenhower.archives.gov)

Will Ike rot in hell (haha)?

It doesn’t have to be an “elected” official that paves the way for the pimps of Wall Street, Big Energy, Big Everything, that so-called “Complex,” tied to the coined Military Industrial Complex, to wrest control of the people’s futures. Take EpiPen, and that head of that Big Pharma company —

She was the first woman to take over a Fortune 500 company. She lied about her MBA. And, her father is a senator and former governor of West Virigina — Heather Manhcin err Bresch. These people are emotional, economic, spiritual tyrants —

Heather Bresch
Happy and bribed multi-millionaire, maybe a cool half a billion now!

Bresch’s time at Mylan featured confusion back in 2008 when the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette found that she hadn’t earned enough credits for the MBA listed on her résumé. In the end, West Virginia University rescinded a degree it retroactively awarded—but turned out, Bresch didn’t need it to keep her post.

More recently, Mylan disclosed that it is among a group of generics companies facing price-fixing allegations from dozens of states, and federal prosecutors are investigating the issue on their own. Mylan’s president, Rajiv Malik, is among the executives personally named in the lawsuit, although Mylan has stood by its president.

But Mylan first became something of a household word back in 2016, when the EpiPen pricing controversy broke. News surfaced that the drugmaker had been hiking prices for years on its lifesaving epinephrine injector to the point where many parents had a hard time paying for their back-to-school packages. Lawmakers struck up investigations and consumers blasted the drugmaker’s motives.

Bresch, for her part, defended Mylan’s pricing by pointing to the drug pricing and rebating system in the U.S. Along with the EpiPen fiasco, Mylan paid $465 million to the federal government to settle claims it underpaid Medicaid rebates.

Image: A pharmacist holds a package of EpiPens epinephrine auto-injector
One child with a family and school and after-school activities and thus would need seven or eight of these, and they go bad in a year’s time, meant to be thrown away. $600 each, that’s $5000.00 each year!

Again, the EpiPen, which is required for more and more people today as we are a society with broken immune systems — largely caused by plastics in our food, pesticidees in our bread, herbicides in our cereal, lead in our water, and a bombardment of gene-spliced crap in our foods, like that old fish gene in tomatoes . . . forget about nanoparticles in our beer and beef! The entire food system and general living systems in the USA have been so adulterated that more and more children I teach are in school with major food allergies requiring an EpiPen, which should be free, but instead it went up to $600 a shot under Bresch’s misleadership, and she was touted as the highest paid Pharma CEO, male or female, in the land. Mis-Fortune 500!

One action speaks volumes!

Think of your own communities and your own legislative districts or states, or regions. Think of that group of prostitutes allowing fracking and earthquakes; coal ash ponds made of crumbling earth and over-spilling. Think of all those CAFOs — confined/concentrated animal feeding operations — polluting the air, land, soil and watershed/water table with billions of gallons of blood, aborted animal fetuses, urine, shit, antibiotics, fungicides, and nitrates, to name a few lovely by-products of that crispy bacon burger or tender chicken nugget with cheddar cheese or big ass T-bone! How many commissioners, state ag bureaucrats, leading scientists with leading universities /lie/lied, cover up/covered up, spin master/spin mastered confusion to the point that you are now there, living a virtual chemical and chronic disease hell?

One decision that puts health, welfare, safety of a community in jeopardy or in fact creates those diseases, hazards, injustices, well, that is the defining moment of any single man’s or woman’s humanity, or lack thereof. You think citing “well, in politics, it’s about compromise after negotiation after compromise” as the way democracy run for, by, because, in the name of the rich is going to fix it? After those prostitutes turn thy cheek and see-speak-hear no evil when it comes to the greater good of supporting and propping up and turbo charging the terrorists’ regime — Capitalism’s quadruple profit schemes!

One stupid remark, as we get in all the presidential debates, both sides of the political feedlot manure pile, and if the remark is steeped in injustice, seeking the power of money and inside trading (as all lobbying efforts at the predatory capital level engage in), then there should be hell to pay.

You got the head creep in the head office (POTUS — Perverted Occupant of the US), with so many lies, crimes, incompetencies and the like defining NPD Trump, but alas, the harbingers of money — networks, newspapers, all the Little Eichmann’s and boot-lickers with bended knees or backwards flips awaiting Trump’s economic, environmental, international buggering — they are defined by their own prostitution and whoring and pimping.

But it’s all about compromise — how many millions will lose school lunches or measly food stamp benefits? Compromise across both aisles. How many millions are on the brink of houselessness because of that fine group of prostitutes and pimps in the landlord category gouge and gentrify and gut families into eviction hell? Compromise at your local state legislature.

One decision exposed paints a thousand other crimes hidden or about to be perpetrated:

Ask about health care at a summer cookout, and you’ll likely get an earful about how drug corporations are gouging us, leaving many families to choose between buying medications or putting food on the table.

Why? Because corporations put profits before patients.

Look at a corporation like Mylan, the maker of EpiPen, which raked in $480 million in profits last year and paid its chairman $97.6 million, all while raising the price of the medication to more than $600 per dose.

And take Michael Pearson, the former CEO of the drug corporation Valeant, who put it bluntly: “The capitalistic approach to pricing is to charge what the market will bear.”

Meanwhile, I’ve been hearing from people around the country who are terrified that the health care repeal now before Congress will put life-saving medications even farther out of reach for them and their families.

From Alaska to Alabama, people are worried sick about being able to get insulin for diabetes, blood pressure drugs, and prescriptions for panic attacks, ovarian cysts, lupus, celiac disease, thyroid cancer, hemophilia, and many other conditions.

So how many hundred of gallons of herbicides are acceptable for humanity, wildlife, flora and fauna, fetuses? Which compromise will your cancer-inflamed aunt or developmental delayed/disabled child applaud and say, “That’s politics . . . haha”? eOh, those Poison Papers:

The “Poison Papers” represent a vast trove of rediscovered chemical industry and regulatory agency documents and correspondence stretching back to the 1920sTaken as a whole, the papers show that both industry and regulators understood the extraordinary toxicity of many chemical products and worked together to conceal this information from the public and the press. These papers will transform our understanding of thehazards posed by certain chemicals on the market and the fraudulence of some of the regulatory processes relied upon to protect human health and the environment. Search instructions for the Poison Papers.

Which of these culprits will rot in Hell? Right! Getting down to headlines:

Roundup Trial: Monsanto Used Fake Data to Win Over Regulators

Trump’s EPA Is Undermining New Law to Regulate Chemicals

But in a chaotic society, where we throw millions at a millionaire, like, what’s his name, Anderson Cooper, or where we listen to the third grade debate (sic) antics of idiotic debate (sic) moderators (faux), well, none of these realities are brought to the fore, since America, even in this hateful iteration, is a play nice kinda place, or at least the medium is the message, since there is a cabal of few controlling 95 percent of media, 95 percent of all communication and education platforms. These chosen people will not tolerate anything outside the discourse, outside the controlled opposition, paid for and militated by the same chosen few.

The game can’t be won by George Carlin wannabes, the Jon Leibowtiz “Daily Show” Stewart or the Stephen Colbert crap. Funny as hell is like Nero Fiddling While Rome Burns — Laughing all the way to the bank for those media mucksters, but diluting thought and intellect, those Daily Shows . . . har, har, har!

Back to my neck of the woods. Living in a town where the forest meets the sea, as the PR spin puts it. I spend a lot of time on the Highway 101 working as a journalist, environmentalist and family advocate for a new gig I just got hired for to lead in Lincoln County.

That beautiful Pacific, hard-edged Oregon coast, blustery winds, amazing crags and reefs and hard escarpments into the sea. That Highway 101 right up against the near tide line, with tens of thousands of visitors in their RVs and cars, renting beach houses for a span or all summer. The town of Newport is 10,000 residents, but some warm sunny summer days, up to 50,000 from around the USA and world.

So, that big emblematic moment in this state, Oregon, not the liberal bastion portrayed by Holly-dirt or the oh-so-tragically-hip Media?! WE have their names, these culprits who call themselves representatives. Sure, there they are in living color, with their districts in bold. Imagine, Oregon’s Little Eichmann Politicians-Prostitutes voting DOWN an Early Warning system for Earthquakes and Wildfires.

If there is a hell (haha) then these will burn in it, but not in the mindset of the Chamber of Commerce or Developers or Real Estate or Construction or Hospitality felons! Read and weep!

Researchers were shocked when nearly $12 million to expand ShakeAlert and AlertWildfire — early warning systems to help detect significant earthquakes and wildfires — unexpectedly went up in smoke last month, just days before the end of the legislative session. Money for the projects was included as part of a larger funding package, but was stripped in a last-minute amendment.

Disaster preparedness has continually been a focal point as Western states are poised to enter the hottest and driest months of wildfire season. And two massive earthquakes in remote areas of Southern California this month reminded the public it’s only a matter of time before the next destructive quake hits.

“We don’t know when the next big earthquake or wildfire will strike, but we know it will happen at some point,” said Douglas Toomey, a seismologist and earth sciences professor at the University of Oregon who helps run both early warning detection systems. And Oregon is “woefully” unprepared, he said.

Here, my lite article on Oregon State University’s marine sciences center in Newport, 13 miles from mile current tsunami vulnerable home:

Bridging the Divide

Again, this is a lifestyle and tourist-travel-stay-and-eat-and-buy magazine, where I make a few shekels:

The next big one

For some, maybe the glass is half empty, especially when considering just when, how big, how long and specifically where the next earthquake will occur along the San Andres Fault and Cascadia Subduction Zone.

For Chris Goldfinger, geology and geophysics professor, it’s not a matter of “if,” but when. He was pretty clear that an 8.0 or above magnitude quake has a 37 percent probability of hitting our Cascadia zone in the next 50 years.

He was quick to criticize the Coastal Caucus, comprising of the eight legislators from districts along the Oregon Coast, who, on June 24, voted down a statewide tsunami zoning code which would have prevented some public services, hospitals, schools, fire and police facilities from being built in tsunami zone sites.

The final activity for the day was a tour of, ironically, a new building that was designed and is currently being constructed to withstand some level of tsunami, with design features that incorporate vertical evacuation from the lower floors to the roof. Then, contingency plans include horizontal paths to avoid tsunami inundation, including Safe Haven Hill west of Highway 101, about a mile from the campus.

Thomas Robbins, from the architecture firm who designed the building, Yost Grube Hall, pointed out other design features that make this new building sort of a model for other structures, including deep-soil mixing to stabilize the ground under the building.

“Augers went down a hundred feet,” Robbins said. “Then thousands of cubic yards of grout [27,380] were injected. We designed this as state of the art, for functionality, safety and aesthetics.”

The expected growth in resident students, up to 500 in 10 years, has necessitated university housing plans — dorms — to be built on higher ground, away from the Hatfield, out of tsunami zones. There was and still is controversy about siting this new building in a tsunami inundation zone.

The OSU Marine Science building under construction, April 2019. It’s on a sandbar at sea level in Newport, Ore., and can be overtopped by the largest of the modeled tsunamis, as well as battered by the NOAA ships docked just to the left out of the frame. It’s not often you can take the “after” picture ahead of time, but this is what it may look like after being destroyed by the next tsunami. Credit: Chris Goldfinger.
The OSU Marine Science building under construction, April 2019. It’s on a sandbar at sea level in Newport, Ore., and can be overtopped by the largest of the modeled tsunamis, as well as battered by the NOAA ships docked just to the left out of the frame. It’s not often you can take the “after” picture ahead of time, but this is what it may look like after being destroyed by the next tsunami. Credit: Chris Goldfinger.

Here, one of the outlier scientists I quoted in my “lite story” and for whom I am seeking a longer story to discuss the bastardization of the science, or what many call engineer-stitutes — the American Society of Civil Engineers, who blew one thing after another, including NOL, Katrina.

– I had this man on my radio show in the early 2000s in Spokane, where he visited one of the colleges where I taught, Spokane Community College, Ivor van Heerden

breach
Breaches like this one (middle distance, beyond the bridge) on the 17th Street Canal caused the extensive flooding. It was not simply a matter of Katrina’s storm surge overtopping the levees.Courtesy U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, New Orleans District

Prof. Chris Goldfinger, Ph.D., Oregon State University

ASCE models: Simplistic, no peer review, no publication

Oregon, however, already had high-end tsunami models. By comparison, the ASCE models are simplistic, a first cut at best, that failed to incorporate the geologic, geophysical or geodetic data. They did not attempt to “balance” the slip along the subduction zone so it made sense in terms of the total budget of motion between the two colliding plates, failed to use the latest geologic evidence, and did not test the models against the geologic evidence of tsunami run-up. The ASCE models and sources were never peer reviewed in any serious way nor published. In fact, it remains pretty hard to ferret out exactly what ASCE did, as there is no documentation to speak of. At a meeting where the results were presented to Oregon specialists including me, they were heavily criticized. But the process was already complete, and our comments were not incorporated.

So in the end, Oregon was sold this package to replace the 1995 law, and also to cut DOGAMI out of the picture. Legislators wanted to shoot the messenger, as so often is the case. Now Oregon will have two sets of tsunami lines, one in the new building codes, and one from DOGAMI. They are not the same, and don’t serve the same purpose. Nonetheless, the DOGAMI lines are defensible, published and available to all, while the ASCE lines are not in the same league. But many in the Oregon legislature became convinced that they were improving things, while others pushed the pro-development agenda, and others appeared to be confused about exactly what they were signing due to the press of other business. 

Worse than the tsunami models is that now there is no statewide uniform guidance or law to govern what can be built in a tsunami zone. Decisions will be made by local building inspectors who decide which risk category a project belongs in, and these people, in my honest opinion, are easily influenced by politics. While a given city is free to go above and beyond the codes and place things in safe locations, it will also be free to do dangerous things if the local politicians push it. To some extent this was always true, and fixing that was a problem a state task force was working on when short-circuited by the legislative attack on DOGAMI.   

A stealth war on science

It gets worse. The bill that passed last week was done in stealth mode, under the radar, when all news was focused on a climate and carbon tax debate. It was attached to another bill very late in the session, and had no real discussion, hearings or debate. Even if some of the supporters were well intentioned, some are conflicted with strong pro-development agendas. As Rep. David Gomberg, a Democrat who represents the Central Coast, stated many times, tsunami protections were costing people money (a dubious claim at best), thus the attacks on the existing law and on DOGAMI.

In the end, the result may well be measured in lives lost for the simple cause of profits for developers on the coast.

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B. Traven’s novel The Treasure of the Sierra Madre (1927):

All right,” Curtin shouted back. “If you are the police, where are your badges? Let’s see them.”

“Badges, to god-damned hell with badges! We have no badges. In fact, we don’t need badges. I don’t have to show you any stinking badges, you god-damned cabrón and chinga tu madre!

This is not just flippancy, but the reality in our chaos, that capitalism is all about survival of the fittest, the dog-eat-dog mentality. I got mine, so screw you if you don’t have yours. You understand the paradigm. And the captains of industry, the titans of tech, lords of war, shufflers of laws, and all the others in the Fortune 1000 hit men/women in the Industrial Pharma Chem Energy Prison Ed. Finance Banking Insurance AI Tech Military Media Med Complex.

I am working on another job I have, part-time, site manager here in Lincoln County with national outfit– with backing by Google and others — looking to get families in Lincoln County to move toward self-sufficiency via working on their own strengths and individualized skills to then communicate with others facing poverty to collectively solve some of the issues around episodic poverty. I’m reading books, articles, watching videos, tied to a sense of collective action and working as people who have the solutions, versus the so-called “experts” having the answers. I am listening to Peter Moskowitz, the author of ‘How to Kill a City: Gentrification, Inequality, and the Fight for the Neighborhood.’

Holding out hands for hand-outs, well, that has been the problem of our times, tied to the war on poverty, all part of the white man’s burden, etc. We have to show people the space and agency to make choices. And, we have to free up capital. Yes, I am a socialist, so the methods of production are the largess of we the worker. We need safety nets that are set — single health payer bill, strong social security, progressive taxation, putting the tax dodgers and off-shorers in jail, free education, public transportation to the tenth power, dental care to the tenth power. Universal Basic Income that doesn’t put money directly into the Amazon’s and Home Depots. We need Small Business incubators by the 100th power. We have to stop sprawl, auto use, death of parks, death of schools, and penury capitalism. NOW. We need true democracy, not this predatory, parasitic, disruptive, violent capitalism.

I’ve talked with several people in my circle, over the past days who are facing evictions, loss of a truck that one depends on to make a living (a good one at $35 to $45 an hour as a craftsman), physical health issues, mobility issues, and so many more hurdles this neoliberal and capitalistic society throws at us to the 10th power. In each case, the powers that be — developers, bankers, doctors, repo men, landlords, property managers, insurance outfits, zoning and city code thugs, cops, prisons, more — have put hurdles up in front of my people, my friends, my family.

You see, if it does take a village to raise a child or a village to help a young couple get their business going or assist aging or medically fragile people to survive with dignity or to provide with the health, welfare, safety and well being of our fellow humans, then we have to as a society make that happen. Us, which is what solidarity is about. We have to support us. We do that by listening, having people tell their stories, and allowing ourselves space to facilitate creative thinking and outside the box solutions.

Solidarity is based on the principle that we are willing to put ourselves at risk to protect each other. — Starhawk

When ‘I’ replaced with ‘We’, even the illness becomes wellness. — Malcolm X

There is no power in the world that can stop the forward march of free men and women when they are joined in the solidarity of human brotherhood. — Walter Reuther

The most important word in the language of the working class is “solidarity.” — Harry Bridges

I don’t believe in charity. I believe in solidarity. Charity is so vertical. It goes from the top to the bottom. Solidarity is horizontal. It respects the other person. I have a lot to learn from other people. — Eduardo Galeano

Solidarity is not a matter of sentiment but a fact, cold and impassive as the granite foundations of a skyscraper. If the basic elements, identity of interest, clarity of vision, honesty of intent, and oneness of purpose, or any of these is lacking, all sentimental pleas for solidarity, and all other efforts to achieve it will be barren of results. — Eugene V. Debs

If you come only to help me, you can go back home. But if you consider my struggle as part of your struggle for survival, then maybe we can work together.—Aboriginal wise woman

My friends, it is solidarity of labor we want. We do not want to find fault with each other, but to solidify our forces and say to each other: “We must be together; our masters are joined together and we must do the same thing.”—Mother Jones

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Criticizing the USA and Israel and Australia and any white country doesn’t mean one is ANTI-Jewish/Protestant/Evangelical/Catholic/Quaker. Criticizing ALL military nations is righteous and should be the SOP for all activists.

So, Alaska, now part of Israel! That big bad ass state with those big bad ass white people cutting timber and culling oil, now they have to serve hummus with those elk burgers.

Israel, US carry out successful test of Arrow-3 missile over Alaska
JERUSALEM (AP) — Israel and the United States say they have successfully tested a jointly developed missile defense system in Alaska.
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So while America withers away under the weight of the Mad Men of Military Murder-Theft-Rape-Pollution, and as the country is in a trillion and trillion dollar deficit for infrastructure repair, and as the populous is frozen in fear at its own shadow, whistling while they pass their own graveyards, we have a hummus and Big Mac fest in Alaska. Imagine, 150 million Americans with chronic illnesses, student debt 1.9 trillion dollars, a society that is a fine-levy-tax-fee-toll-poll-mortgage-loan shark economy, and we have Israel getting billions thrown at them every year from toothless and arthritic and broke-back mountain citizens of the US of I.

Oh, a few words are worth a million blogs. From Joe the Farmer from Merced:

Vivian Majors spent her life cleaning houses while her husband, Martin, worked as a carpenter.

Their bodies broke down in their 60s. Martin now lives in a nursing home and has Parkinson’s disease. Vivian, now 71, lives on her own and ekes by on a $960 in social security, plus $50 in food stamps.

In this sense, elder poverty isn’t really about elders; it’s about whole lifetimes of economic marginality.

 Counterpunch

 Paul —

I’m so much better off than Vivian. I get $968.00 rather than Vivian’s paltry $960.00 dollars from Social Security. I don’t get the $50.00 dollars in food stamps though. I can’t really do any hard physical work for any length of time anymore because my body is broken down much the same way as Vivian’s husband Martin. Thankfully I don’t have Parkinson’s disease like Martin does. But I sure am glad as a pig in a puddle of slop that Trump and the republicans gave Bill Gates, Jeff Bezos, Warren Buffet and company a huge tax break so that they don’t have to suffer.

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We are not going to get under the skin of poverty and near poverty, and about to be broken people. Of course, the narrative is controlled by the American Jewish Media Complex, American Jewish Publishing Complex, and the Billionaires Club so nary a word comes out of the mouths of presstitutes in this under-performing/UNDER DEVELOPING economy, which Manfred Max Neef discussed well here —

MANFRED MAX-NEEF:

I mean, your country is the most dramatic example that you can find. I have gone as far as saying — and this is a chapter of a book of mine that is published next month in England, the title of which is Economics Unmasked. There is a chapter called “The United States, an Underdeveloping Nation,” which is a new category. We have developed, underdeveloped and developing. Now you have underdeveloping. And your country is an example, in which the one percent of the Americans, you know, are doing better and better and better, and the 99 percent is going down, in all sorts of manifestations. People living in their cars now and sleeping in their cars, you know, parked in front of the house that used to be their house — thousands of people. Millions of people, you know, have lost everything. But the speculators that brought about the whole mess, oh, they are fantastically well off. No problem. No problem.

First of all, we need cultured economists again, who know the history, where they come from, how the ideas originated, who did what, and so on and so on; second, an economics now that understands itself very clearly as a subsystem of a larger system that is finite, the biosphere, hence economic growth as an impossibility; and third, a system that understands that it cannot function without the seriousness of ecosystems. And economists know nothing about ecosystems. They don’t know nothing about thermodynamics, you know, nothing about biodiversity or anything. I mean, they are totally ignorant in that respect. And I don’t see what harm it would do, you know, to an economist to know that if the beasts would disappear, he would disappear as well, because there wouldn’t be food anymore. But he doesn’t know that, you know, that we depend absolutely from nature. But for these economists we have, nature is a subsystem of the economy. I mean, it’s absolutely crazy.

And then, in addition, you know, bring consumption closer to production. I live in the south of Chile, in the deep south. And that area is a fantastic area, you know, in milk products and what have you. Top. Technologically, like the maximum, you know? I was, a few months ago, in a hotel, and there in the south, for breakfast, and there are these little butter things, you know? I get one, and it’s butter from New Zealand. I mean, if that isn’t crazy, you know? And why? Because economists don’t know how to calculate really costs, you know? To bring butter from 20,000 kilometers to a place where you make the best butter, under the argument that it was cheaper, is a colossal stupidity, because they don’t take into consideration what is the impact of 20,000 kilometers of transport? What is the impact on the environment of that transportation, you know, and all those things? And in addition, I mean, it’s cheaper because it’s subsidized. So it’s clearly a case in which the prices never tell the truth. It’s all tricks, you know? And those tricks do colossal harms. And if you bring consumption closer to production, you will eat better, you will have better food, you know, and everything. You will know where it comes from. You may even know the person who produces it. You humanize this thing, you know? But the way the economists practice today is totally dehumanized.

The principles, you know, of an economics which should be are based in five postulates and one fundamental value principle.

One, the economy is to serve the people and not the people to serve the economy.

Two, development is about people and not about objects.

Three, growth is not the same as development, and development does not necessarily require growth.

Four, no economy is possible in the absence of ecosystem services.

Five, the economy is a subsystem of a larger finite system, the biosphere, hence permanent growth is impossible.

And the fundamental value to sustain a new economy should be that no economic interest, under no circumstance, can be above the reverence of life.

What more needs to be said? Israel has its second country, United States of Israel, and enjoys the benefits of statehood in that supposedly rough and tumble Alaska, that is full of white guys and gals who laugh at the Native Alaskan culture they have helped to decimate.

This is truly a sick thing, and that troika of religions — Judaism, Christianity, Islam — you have to wonder about the big daddy in the sky troika and those who support them hook – line – and- nuke!

Fundamental Human Needs are not on the minds of Millionaires and Billionaires and their Little Eichmanns.

CAN ANYONE IMAGINE those of the Judaeo “faith” and white Jews in Israel living the high life like these Americans below?

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Here we have Israeli’s watching their country shoot missiles at children, old men, hospitals, apartments. Where’s that American Flag? Laughing, no less. A picture is worth a thousand years!

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Just kicking back while that USA-paid for armament hits Palestine.
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Oh, those couches and happy invaders of Palestine enjoying taking photos of death and mutilation.

We fight these human traffickers and despoilers of whole nations by learning their tricks through a different paradigm —

Economics Unmasked: From Power and Greed to Compassion and the Common Good by Phillip B. Smith and Manfred Max-Neef, Green Books, UK, 2011

Manfred Max-Neef is a Chilean-German economist noted for his pioneering work in human scale development and his threshold hypothesis on the relation of welfare to GDP, as well as other contributions, for which he received the Right Livelihood Award in 1983. Phillip B. Smith (deceased, 2005) was an American–Dutch physicist with a devotion to social justice that led to an interest in economics. Smith died before this collaborative work was completed, so it fell to Max-Neef to finish it, respecting what Smith had done. Although this results in differences in style and approach between chapters, Max-Neef informs us that they both read and approved each other’s contributions, so it is a true collaboration. These differences between the physical and social scientists are complementary rather than contradictory.

As clear from the title, the book argues that modern neoclassical economics is a mask for power and greed, a construct designed to justify the status quo. Its claim to serve the common good is specious, and its claim to scientific status is fraudulent. The latter is sought mainly by excessive mathematical formalism to the neglect of concrete facts and real values. The mathematical formalism is in imitation of nineteenth century physics (economics viewed as the mechanics of utility and self-interest), but without any empirical basis remotely comparable to physics. Pareto is identified a villain here, and to a lesser extent Jevons.

The hallmark of a real science is a basic consensus about fundamentals. There is no real consensus in economics, so how can it claim to be a mature science? Easy, by forcing a false “consensus” through the simple expedient of declaring heterodox views to be “not really economics,” eliminating history of economic thought from the curriculum, instigating a pseudo-Nobel Prize in Economics, and attaining a monopoly on faculty positions in economics departments at elite universities. Such a top-down, imposed consensus is the opposite of the true bottom-up consensus that results when independent minds all bow before the power of the same truth. “Mathematics was simply built into the laws that describe the behavior of the atomic nucleus. You didn’t have to impose it on the nucleus.” (p.67). The same cannot be said of people, even atomistic homo economicus.

The authors give due attention to the history of economic thought, drawing most positively on Sismondi (for statements of value and purpose), Karl Polanyi (for his treatment of labor, nature, and money as non commodities that escape the logic of markets), and Frederick Soddy (for his thermodynamics-based analysis of money, wealth, debt, and the impossibility of continuing exponential growth of the economy). Negative references are reserved mainly for Friedrich von Hayek and Milton Friedman, with a mixed review for Amartya Sen. While I understand their antipathy to Hayek I found their case against him less than totally convincing. More convincing and fruitful is their building on the neglected work of Sismondi, Polanyi, and Soddy. That effort cries out to be continued by others.

Their criticisms of globalization, free trade, and free capital mobility are well founded. Economists must remember that the first rule of efficiency is to count all costs, not to specialize according to comparative advantage, especially if that “advantage” is based on a standards-lowering competition to externalize environmental and social costs. Indeed comparative advantage is irrelevant in a world of international capital mobility that gives priority to absolute advantage. While specialization according to absolute advantage gives gains from trade, they need not be mutually shared as in the comparative advantage model.

Chapter 10 provides a summary of the basics of ecological economics as “the humane economy for the 21st Century,” as well as a review of Max-Neef’s insightful matrix of needs and satisfiers.

Of particular interest is Chapter 11 on “the United States as an underdeveloping nation” — the process of development in reverse, or retrogression in the U.S. is chronicled in terms of unemployment, wage stagnation, increase in inequality, dependence on food stamps, bankruptcy, foreclosure, health care costs, incarceration, etc. Not happy reading, but a necessary reminder that gains from development are not permanent — they can be squandered by a corrupt elite employing a self-serving economic model to fool a distracted populace.

As a teacher of economics I was especially glad to read Chapter 12 on “the non-toxic teaching of economics.” I concur with the authors’ view that the teaching of economics today is a scandal. Reference has already been made to the dropping of history of economic thought from the curriculum — why study the errors of the past now that we know the truth? That is the arrogant attitude. And we certainly do not want any philosophical or empirical questioning of the canonical assumptions upon which the whole superstructure of mathematical deduction teeters. Growth must not be questioned because it is by definition the solution to all problems — even those that it causes.

As late as the 1960s economics students could study approaches other than the neoclassical — there were the remaining classical economists, institutional economists, the Marxians, the Keynesians, the Austrian School, Labor economics, Fabian Socialists, Market Socialists, Distributists, etc. Now there is a cartel of elite, expensive universities, “the Big Eight” as the authors call them (California, Harvard, Princeton, Columbia, Stanford, Chicago, Yale, and MIT) to which we could add Cambridge, Oxford, and a few others. They all teach the same growth-oriented, globalizing economics. The IMF and the World Bank hire economists from many countries and pride themselves on their diversity. But the diversity of nationality and color masks homogeneity of viewpoint since 90% of these economists graduated from the Big Eight, and are comfortable with both their position and their economic views. One wag succinctly described a frequent career path as: “MIT-PhD-IMF-BMW.”

Further evidence of the corruption of economics arrives daily. The documentary film Inside Job exposed the complicity of some Big Eight faculty in the financial debacle of 2008. I recently read that the Florida State University economics department has accepted a grant from the right-wing Koch Brothers to hire two prestigious economists with acceptable views, no doubt products of the Big Eight, whose presence on the faculty will raise FSU a step on the academic ladder. All corruption in academia cannot be blamed on economics departments, but the toxicity level there is high, and Max-Neef and Smith are right to accuse. One good way for honest economics professors to fight back is to recommend this book to their students!

The book ends with a hopeful review of some concrete, real world, bottom-up, human-scale development initiatives. The World Bank and the IMF are necessarily absent from this final chapter’s discussion of moving from village to global order. Might it be that after globally integrated collapse we will move to village reconstruction, and then to a global federation of separate national economies under the principle of subsidiarity?

Part of my gig is writing columns for the Oregon Coat Today, and they are deep and long and cover, in each case, one person’s mental, spiritual, intellectual, humanistic, and community-tied footprint. It’s called, Deep Dive with Paul Haeder.

As discussed in the below entry, I was one of many attendees for a marine sciences media summit at OSU, Hatfield Marine Sciences Center. I’ll post that column on the event here soon.

As I stated, though, I am living on the Pacific Coast, Central Oregon, now in a small community that is deemed Oregon’s most vulnerable town in the state for sea water inundation, tsunami, tidal surges, stormy weather, sea expansion.

There you have it, Mister Sustainability and Radical Ecosocialist, living the life (a lie) right near a sandy bay outlooking toward the Pacific. A few inches about sea level.

In this March 11, 2011, file photo, car headlights form a steady stream of cars as residents evacuate the coastal town of Seaside, Ore., after tsunami warnings were issued as a result of an earthquake in Japan. AP Photo/Don Ryan

The summit had a couple of folk really working hard on earthquake mitigation and sea level rise. I’ll get those two individuals as column space subjects.

But the tour we all took at the end of the day was of the Marine Studies Building. More than $62 million, for classroom, meeting, lecture auditorium, coffee and food court, and some research facilities right there in Newport, Oregon, again, on a spit of land-sand, vulnerable to tsunami. Done in 2020, with the projection of adding hundreds of more students to the Hatfield campus — up to 500 in ten years.

This building has tsunami mitigation — earth cored out with grout injected underneath, an elevator that runs continuously with its own power source, thicker walls, supports that will collapse “safely” and a design that puts the building in an “l” shape, with the two parts not connected. Finally, a roof 42 feet high for the worse case scenario so students, staff and others can run up to the roof for that wave after the big quake.

Our bridge is supposed to collapse during quake and subsequent tsunami. That’s Highway 101. Hmm. There is an exit pathway to a summit, Safe Haven, a mile away.

Yikes. Who gets to live through that mess? And, that’s daytime. Ironically, the powers that be have designs and a site for dorms for up to 350 students somewhere else, out of the tsunami zone. Don’t want Johnny and Jane killed during their sleep . . . during classes, well . . . .

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OSU geologist: Building marine science center in tsunami zone is ‘completely inexplicable’

Chris Goldfinger, a professor in OSU’s College of Earth, Ocean and Atmospheric Sciences, said Friday that he will continue to oppose President Ed Ray’s decision to build the Marine Studies Initiative building in a tsunami-inundation zone near the mouth of Yaquina Bay.

The professor said Ray is going in the opposite direction of safety. “For the university administrator to essentially ignore all the science and double down on building in a tsunami zone is completely inexplicable to me,” Goldfinger said.

Goldfinger, who directs OSU’s Active Tectonics and Seafloor Mapping Laboratory and was featured prominently in the New Yorker‘s Pulitzer Prize-winning story about a Cascadia Subduction Zone earthquake, said Ray’s decision is “just the beginning.”

“Not only as an earthquake geologist, but as a taxpayer and as an Oregonian, I think this is a matter for public debate,” Goldfinger said. Last year, the Legislature approved $24.8 million in bonds for the project. OSU hopes to finish the building by early 2018. Earlier this year, Goldfinger and about two dozen faculty and staff signed a letter opposing the Newport site.

So I came across this bit of psychological hell — while writing and working in another job as a Site Manager for a non-profit out of SF-Boston, Site Manager for Lincoln County, where I live!

Don’t say retreat when talking about sea rise in California — Imperial Beach and Del Mar have taken that word off the table

This is the crap I have been working with since my teens — the Edward Bernays, psychological fascism, social engineering, marketing ploys that started here, a sucker born every minute, snake oil salesmen, Puritans Not the First Illegal Aliens.

Oh Americans as Disneyfied, McDonalds-ized, AmazonDotCom-ized, Walmartized, Militarized, Market-ized, Consumer-ized, and Infantilized beyond anything I could have predicted when I was a scuba diving, newspaper writing, hard-ass in Mexico more than four decades ago.

Read and weap — “

A workshop on July 12 brought together the League of Cities, California State Association of Counties, local government officials, and the California Coastal Commission. Sea level rise was a key topic, along with one of the most controversial tools in the arsenal.

“The big elephant in the room is managed retreat,” said Imperial Beach councilmember Ed Spriggs, who helped develop the workshop agenda, and whose low-lying community is one of the most vulnerable in California to sea rise.

Unfortunately, we have a gap between what scientists are saying and the general population on this issue,” Spriggs told the workshop. “We’ve got to close the gap before we can have the kind of discussion we need to have.”

Managed retreat has been politicized in almost every community where it’s gone into early drafts of the local coastal plan, Spriggs said. That hampers planning, with the focus turning to the taking of private property, and eminent domain.

Commissioners suggested they should change the name to make it more palatable, but by any name, retreat means homes are removed so beaches can migrate inland. And that rarely goes down smoothly with homeowners.

Our own Oregon just voted down zoning restrictions for us in the Earthquake Tsunami Flooding area — you know, making sure police, fire, hospitals, schools and other public service outfits DO NOT get built in the known tsunami zones.

When you have the US Chamber of Commerce, the Developers, the Builders, the Faux Business Community, the Road, Paving, Hammering community dictating where public buildings go, at the expense of us — all of those of us — survivors — who will be scrambling to pick up the dead, to find missing loved ones, to find some shelter, some bit of food, water and medical help.

So many things about a country that shows its insanity — still spraying a million chemicals on baby Johnny and Janey’s food; guns, nukes, jets, ships, bombs to Israel, Saudi Arabia, UEA, et al.; a Pedophile in Chief and Bumbling Democrats and Repulsive Republicans still sauntering around as our old time religion of pitchforks, tar and feathers, and massive work stoppages has been replaced by screen-time with the idiots writing screen screed and un-News.

These stories stack up every day — how Capitalism is Insane, Mean, Murderous, A Death Ray for the 80 Percent, A Predatory and Parasitic System of Theft, Rape, Destruction.

Here, a big report by graduate students, out of state (U of Michigan), on:

Resilience of Oregon Coastal Communities in Response to External Stressors Hell, the New Yorker is writing about us down here: Oregon’s Tsunami Risk: Between the Devil and the Deep Blue Sea

So, these legislators (sic) voted down sanity, as they always seem to do:

Oregon Legislature repeals ban on building in tsunami zone

Rio Pescado stubfoot toad (Atelopus balios).

I’ve been lucky to be here in the Newport area, seeing what the Oregon State University is doing around many many issues tied to marine biology, marine engineering, oceanography, geophysics, fisheries science, and sea life as food products.

I went to a media summit, Monday, where 12 journalists in Oregon met with many scientists, some from OSU, some from other agencies. This is at the Hatfield Marine Sciences Center, which has been teaching students and doing research for more than 50 years. I’ve written about some of that research in this blog space. I’ll continue to do more.

I was there to learn and to make sure there was a realized tension between journalists and scientists, between a writer and reporter and scientists who are doing research around myriad of issues, some of which are looking to help communities (human), some to help marine (like gray whales, oysters) and others helping develop boondoggles like wave and wind “energy” in our near shore seas.

Drones over gray whales to study their size, activities, levels of stress. We’ve had many strandings of whales, and I am sure, there are twice as many whales dead out in the ocean, dead but sunken to the bottom that do not get recorded. Plastics, chemicals, noise pollution, and food sources diminished.

Some OSU scientists are working on “the next big one,” that is, a huge (8.0 or higher magnitude) earthquake as part of the Cascadia Subduction Zone. Others on coastal hazards (erosion, inundation, stormy waves, more) tied to rising oceans, which of course is tied to climate change, which is global warming, which is the melting of the world’s ice!

Missing in some of this was any discussion about biodiversity for biodiversty’s sake, that is, for the right of nature. EVERYTHING is tied to the human lens, really, even gray whale research — how fishermen and ships can get along with whales. Imagine, 333,000 cetaceans and pinnipeds killed globally from fishing gear. Imagine, how blithe the human condition is, not only to the death of biodiversity, but to its own race, species.

Chestnut-sided warbler (Setophaga pensylvanica).

Here, Carl Safina, writing at Yale360 about why scientists need to stop their anthropomorphic b.s. by saying holding firm on biodiversity is a non-starter.

In the early 20th century, a botanist named Robert F. Griggs discovered Katmai’s volcanic “Valley of Ten Thousand Smokes.” In love with the area, he spearheaded efforts to preserve the region’s wonders and wildlife. In 1918, President Woodrow Wilson established Katmai National Monument (now Katmai National Park and Preserve), protecting 1,700 square miles, thus ensuring a home for bear cubs born a century later, and making possible my indelible experience that day. As a legacy for Griggs’ proclivity to share his love of living things, George Washington University later established the Robert F. Griggs Chair in Biology.

That chair is now occupied by a young professor whose recent writing probably has Griggs spinning in his grave. He is R. Alexander Pyron. A few months ago, The Washington Post published a “Perspective” piece by Pyron that is an extreme example of a growing minority opinion in the conservation community, one that might be summarized as, “Humans are profoundly altering the planet, so let’s just make peace with the degradation of the natural world.”

No biologist is entitled to butcher the scientific fundamentals on which they hang their opinions.

Pyron’s essay – with lines such as, “The only reason we should conserve biodiversity is for ourselves, to create a stable future for human beings” and “[T]he impulse to conserve for conservation’s sake has taken on an unthinking, unsupported, unnecessary urgency” – left the impression that it was written in a conservative think tank, perhaps by one of the anti-regulatory zealots now filling posts throughout the Trump administration. Pyron’s sentiments weren’t merely oddly out of keeping with the legacy of the man whose name graces his job title. Much of what Pyron wrote is scientifically inaccurate. And where he stepped out of his field into ethics, what he wrote was conceptually confused.

Pyron has since posted, on his website and Facebook page, 1,100 words of frantic backpedaling that land somewhere between apology and retraction, including mea culpas that he “sensationalized” parts of his own argument and “cavalierly glossed over several complex issues.” But Pyron’s original essay and his muddled apology do not change the fact that the beliefs he expressed reflect a disturbing trend that has taken hold among segments of the conservation community. And his article comes at a time when conservation is being assailed from other quarters, with a half-century of federal protections of land being rolled back, the Endangered Species Act now more endangered than ever, and the relationship between extinction and evolution being subjected to confused, book-length mistreatment.

White rhinoceros (Ceratotherium simum).

Time now to get the perspective of friend and farmer, fellow hard left socialists, Joe the Farmer from Merced. What he writes as a 66-year-old, is powerful, something the powers that be never hear, never consider, or never take seriously. Safina is amazing.

Paul

I’ve been busier than a cat covering shit lately but finally took time to read the “In Defense of Biodiversity” essay you sent. This Pyron asshole doesn’t surprise me at all. He’s just another corporate tool cranked out by one of the Ivey League schools whose job it is to keep predatory capitalism on track. It’s funny, as I read his name, “Pyron” I thought of Prions* the little maladjusted, juvenile delinquent proteins that don’t need DNA to reproduce, that attach themselves to a healthy proteins and transform them into a identically maladjusted Prions. The little buggers are also known for mad cow disease. Pyron is the perfect Prion in the brave new world of Andrew Wheeler.

One only look at the nut scrotum of California, Merced County to get an idea of how man is destroying everything he touches in his pursuit of profits. In my lifetime the changes to this area are unfathomable. The plants and wildlife I was so familiar with as a kid are almost, if not all gone. Canals that once teamed with life are now void of almost all life.

Horned toads that young fellows used to walk around with to scare the Hell out of young girls at school are long gone. Same goes for the toads that used to be everywhere on a hot night around a porch light feasting on a dinner of bugs. The transformation happened at incredible speed. Ground water has fallen at incredible rates killing many trees and plants that used to thrive in this area.

What has been left is an environment that has been altered by chemicals and machinery that keeps the agribusiness system of farming chugging along. Nothing else has any value to these assholes that no longer call themselves farmers but rather producers or growers. In their zeal to farm fence-post to fence post everything is drenched in herbicides. What few creatures that managed to adapt to the chemicals get mowed by flail mowers or swathers that they can’t flee from because the machinery is so powerful and fast. The extensive use of herbicides has turned what used to be fairly easy plants to control into super weeds that you can barely chop out of the ground with an ax. Every time a new problem occurs an army of University students show up and dedicate their energies to creating a new chemical or machine to further take us into a new world of sci-fi wackery.

It’s a world I find so disgusting that I have started rooting for the weeds and viruses and bugs to take it all down. I hate what agriculture has become. The humanity is gone from it. It’s just another factory dumping its effluent on the environment at the expense of everything else. And then a clown like Monty Pyron comes along and declares what I have valued all my life doesn’t matter. It makes me want to strangle the highly educated shit out of the idiot along with the army of Trumpian imbeciles that make of his agencies leaders.

In a way Monty Pyron is right. New species have evolved to fill the niche that was left when others went extinct. They are the soulless MBA’s, CEO’s, K-Street Lobbyists, Military Industrialist, Congressmen and Senators, Banksters and Judges that have evolved to keep this inhumane system going. Scientists with a conscious are a dying breed just like I am. Relics of the past.

Joe

*Prions are misfolded proteins with the ability to transmit their misfolded shape onto normal variants of the same protein. They characterize several fatal and transmissible neurodegenerative diseases in humans and many other animals.