More Disaster for Top Soil


Heinberg Wins Award

Richard Heinberg Wins Book Award

Post Carbon Fellow Richard Heinberg has just been awarded the Bronze medal in Current Affairs in the 2007 Independent Publisher Book Awards for The Oil Depletion Protocol. The Protocol is an international agreement that will enable the world's nations to cooperatively reduce their dependence on oil.

The Oil Depletion Protocol Project is a program of Post Carbon Institute to lay the groundwork for and facilitate the successful adoption and implementation of the Protocol.

We Also Are

Great apes 'facing climate peril'
The great apes are facing an "inevitable crisis" arising from climate change, a leading conservationist warns.
Full story: http://news.bbc.co.uk/go/em/-/2/hi/science/nature/6704549.stm

The Scoop on Fast Food

see Fast Food Nation. Available thru Netflix.

The Scoop on Oil

see A Crude Awakening. It's available thru Netflix


Artist/Poet Featured at Artist Alley

On Friday, June 1
you are invited to join Emily Whittle at Artist Alley
in Southern Pines from 5-9 pm, for refreshments and to see her latest work.
Emily, from Red Springs, is the featured artist for the rest of the month
but would love to see you in person if you can make it.
Artist Alley is now located at 167 E. New Hampshire Ave., Southern Pines, NC
just two doors from the Greek restaurant, Corfu.

Why Not Here, in Drought?

California Assembly Considers Solar Water Heater Law
A bill aimed at making solar heating systems widely available is expected to move through the California State Assembly's Appropriations Committee on Wednesday and to the full body next week.

Fear and Dominance

Jules Witcover
Repairing the Damage Done
"President Bush's detour in Iraq off the multilateral track adhered to throughout the Cold War years has caused a deep drop in American prestige abroad, requiring extensive repair by his successor, regardless of which party wins in 2008," writes Jules Witcover.

War Made Easy

War Made Easy: How Presidents & Pundits Keep Spinning Us to Death

Protests against the Bush administration and the Iraq War continued across the country over the Memorial Day weekend. Today we spend the hour looking at how presidents from Lyndon Johnson to George W. Bush sold wars to the American public.

Media critic Norman Solomon and the Media Education Foundation have released a documentary titled "War Made Easy: How Presidents and Pundits Keep Spinning Us to Death." The film is based on Solomon's book of the same name. The film features extended commentary by Solomon and is narrated by Sean Penn.


Summary on GM Foods

Seventy per cent!

Impeachment, Charlotte, June 1

Town Hall Meeting: A Public Discussion About Impeachment of President Bush and Vice-President Cheney
Friday, June 1, 2007, 7:30 pm
Charlotte Energy Solutions, 337 Baldwin Ave, Charlotte, NC 28204

The discussion will be moderated by Ahmad Daniels, Executive Director of Creative-Interchange, and a Vietnam-era Marine War Resister who appears in the film "Sir, No Sir".

Guest speakers & participants:
Cindy Sheehan, Gold Star Families For Peace
David Swanson, AfterDowningStreet.org
Rev. Lennox Yearwood, Pres., Hip Hop Caucus
Al McSurely, civil rights attorney & Grassroots Impeachment Movement
Debra Sweet, World Can't Wait - National
Lauren Guy McAlpin, World Can’t Wait - GreensboroTroops Out Now Coalition
Action Center For Justice

Info: 704.492.8527 or operationimpeachment@yahoo.comhttp://www.OperationImpeachment.org

That's Accountability

Death penalty for China official
China sentences the former head of its Food and Drug Administration to death for corruption, state media says.
Full story: http://news.bbc.co.uk/go/em/-/2/hi/asia-pacific/6699441.stm


Who Will Speak Out?

"Somebody Had to Speak Out. If Not Me, Who?"
Maj. Gen. John Batiste

Fired by CBS News for Anti-Iraq War 'Advocacy'

Major General John Batiste was offered a promotion to become a three-star general, the second-highest-ranking military officer in Iraq. Instead, he quit over the war.

After he appeared in a commercial for VoteVets.org, CBS News fired him as a paid news consultant. MoveOn.org collected 230,000 signatures on a petition demanding he be rehired.

In a wide-ranging interview, Maj. Gen. Batiste discusses the Iraq war, calls for the closing of the US prison camp at Guantanamo Bay, says private security firms like Blackwater USA should be investigated and says President Bush has failed by surrounding himself with "like-minded, compliant subordinates."
Listen/Watch/Read http://www.democracynow.org/article.pl?sid=07/05/25/1456251

Important Piece, Pilot's OpEd Page

[Pferdekamper attends Pinecrest High School]


Stripping States' Rights for GM

DTN Ag Policy May 25, 2007
Provision Would Strip States of Control

The House Subcommittee on Livestock, Dairy and Poultry passed on the full committee on Thursday a briefly-worded provision that could have huge ramifications for the abilities of state and local governments to effectively oversee anything involving agriculture.

Under the heading Miscellaneous Provisions, Sec. 123 USDA Inspection and Determination of Non-Regulated Status, the subcommittee approved a provision that would ban a state or locality from "prohibiting an article the Secretary of Agriculture has inspected and passed, or an article the Secretary has determined to be of non-regulated status."

The provision passed on to the full committee without discussion. It's a brief statement that, based on the interpretation, could prevent a state from establishing rules tighter than USDA or protecting the interests of local producers. It would seem as well the tiny provision would also tell states they don't have any right adopt food-safety or recall standards.

This proposed restriction on the rights of states is being offered at the same time dozens of lawmakers are pushing to allow state-inspected meat to be sold across the country. So on one hand, Congress is trying to clamp down on they way a state can regulate and on the other hand, Congress wants to give states more authority over meat inspections.

The Center for Food Safety was about the only group to challenge the intent of this proposal. The center stated in a news alert that the provision appears to be aimed at enacted state laws that restrict the planting of genetically engineered crops.

Further, the provision could prohibit states from taking action when food contamination cases occur, the center pointed out. This biotech battle in a variety of states. Some, such as Iowa, Nebraska and others have passed legislation making sure local counties cannot adopt their own biotech planting bans.

Voters in at least four California counties passed such measures, leading biotech seed and chemical companies to go into action and get lawmakers to make sure such bans could not occur in major biotech crop states.

Still, states in recent years have had to take action to protect the interests of markets, even when USDA has approved a product. Rice, in particular, comes to mind. Lawmakers in Arkansas, Missouri and California have created legislation against biotech rice because USDA approved a product that, if grown, would have caused major international or domestic commodity buyers to stop buying rice from those states.

In other situations, USDA regulators didn't do enough to ensure companies prevented the spread of an unapproved product into the general crop planting. Arkansas, not exactly a bastion of liberal, locally-grown, organic consumerism, had to take action because two of its best varieties of long-grain rice were contaminated. European countries have continued to kick back shipments because of that.

It's not known at this point why this provision was added or ended up in the purview of a subcommittee on livestock, poultry or dairy. But if such a law is needed and would effectively strip authority from states and counties to follow the wishes of voters or the needs of their farmers, then shouldn't such a proposal demand a hearing, open debate and discussion before Congress offers a new, broad power to the Secretary of Agriculture with fewer than 40 words in the farm bill?


In The Garden, Adam has just bitten the apple, God is pointing to the Eden Exit sign. Eve says to God, "Don't be silly. We're not going anywhere; I just planted perennials."

Two vehicles gassing up. Driver of SUV speaking to driver of small car: "It's not as selfish as it looks. We all live in here, and there's a subsistence farm in the back."

Colossal Waste--Are You Part of It?


Kingsolver Review, Year of Vegetables



Farmers Feed the World

International peasants' movement vs. G8

Privatizing Iraqi Oil for US Corporations

What Congress Really Approved: Benchmark No. 1: Privatizing Iraq's Oil for US Companies

Retired Army Colonel Ann Wright says the supplemental bill Congress passed to continue funding the Iraq war is really about "stealing Iraq's oil - the second largest reserves in the world. The "benchmark," or goal, the Bush administration has been working on furiously since the US invaded Iraq is privatization of Iraq's oil. Now they have Congress blackmailing the Iraqi Parliament and the Iraqi people: no privatizationof Iraqi oil, no reconstruction funds."

VIDEO Keith Olbermann: The Entire Government Has Failed Us on Iraq
Keith Olbermann presents a special comment on betrayal saying, "For thepresident - and the majority leaders and candidates and rank-and-file congressmen and senators of either party - there is only blame for this shameful and bi-partisan betrayal."

American Self-Portrait


Locke Foundation vs. Science

[from Conservation Insider Bulletin]
Tar Heel Heads Sierra Club: UNC professor Robert Cox this week was elected as president of the national Sierra Club. This marks the third time that Cox has been chosen to head the 1.3 million member organization, having served as its president previously from 1994 to 1996 and from 2000 to 2001. Cox told the press, "The number one priority is global warming."

The Other Side: Global Dumbing Tour

The Locke Foundation (North Carolina's very own version of the Flat Earth Society) announced with much fanfare a multi-stop "Global Warming Tour" of presentations by "highly respected American Enterprise Institute scientist and environmental consultant Joel Schwartz" to debunk Al Gore on global warming. (Good Old Al is the wacky anti-environmentalists' favorite whipping boy, especially since the release of his award winning documentary, "An Inconvenient Truth".)

Now, we're sure that Mr. Schwartz (no doctorate of any kind) is a fine fellow and an entertaining speaker. But to trot him out as your top gun scientist to confront the world's genuine scientific community on the reality of climate change?

Out of curiosity, we checked Mr. Schwartz's own website for his background. Without doubt, he is a professional in his field--but that field is advocacy on behalf of anti-regulatory organizations: American Enterprise Institute, Reason Public Policy Institute, Competitive Enterprise Institute, John Locke Foundation, etc. He has authored a host of articles for such groups critical of the case for stronger air pollution rules.

His scientific credentials to do so, or to critique the mainstream scientific community's conclusion that global warming is taking place and is human-related, are less impressive. Schwartz's online resume reveals no special training or research in climatology; no teaching positions; no academic professional posts (unless one counts a year as a research associate 6/86 to 5/87 immediately following his BA); and no involvement since 1991 in any publication which appears to include peer-reviewed scientific research.

Mr. Schwartz does have a master's degree, in Planetary Science, and his earliest post-graduate work seems to reflect that field--small parts in articles on Uranus, Neptune, and Titan. That's a fascinating field, but we suppose it's a tough gig in which to make a long-term living. In any event, he quickly turned to writing instead on topics like welfare reform, charter schools, child development--and air pollution control policies.

The point of our uncharitable critique of Mr. Schwartz's credentials is this: The Locke Foundation and its organizational peers are trying to get away with portraying a scientific squirt gun as a Niagara Falls. It's a mismatch of quality which typifies their advocacy, yet they are consistently granted equal-time quotes by major media to present their ideology as science.

They attack N.C.'s Legislative Commission on Global Climate Change, and DENR's Climate Action Plan Advisory Group (CAPAG), as scientifically biased because they decline to treat the Lockies' politicized "experts" as sources of real scientific information. They even have the gall to challenge DENR's contract facilitators for the CAPAG process, the Center for Climate Strategies (CCS), as a biased advocacy group.

At best for the Lockies, that would be the frog calling the tree leaf green. In contrast to the Locke standard-bearers, however, CCS can boast real and relevant scientific expertise among its team members. (For a review of the CCS staff and consultant credentials, go to www.climatestrategies.us.)

Be warned that the Locke "Global Warming Tour" will travel around our state the last week in June. We have no doubt that they will seek as much media attention as possible to their cavalcade of misinformation.

Without alert local watchdogs on behalf of the environment, this latest effort to dumb down public discourse on global warming could be mistaken as real science. So when the Locke flying circus comes to a media market near you, be sure to let your local reporters and editors know the facts about climate change (and about the Locke Foundation).

Flat-earthers around our nation have already stalled meaningful action on global warming for far too long.

US Opposition at G8

US 'opposes' G8 climate proposals
The US has "fundamental concerns" at German plans to curb G8 emissions, a leaked document shows.
Full story:http://news.bbc.co.uk/go/em/-/2/hi/science/nature/6694227.stm


Culture Change


Global Web of Abuse

In Annual Human Rights Report, Amnesty International Says U.S. Unrepentant About Global Web of Abuse

Amnesty International is accusing the United States of turning the world into a global battlefield in the so-called war on terror. That charge appears in Amnesty's new report on the state of human rights around the world.

The authors of the Amnesty report write, "The U.S. administration's doublespeak has been breathtakingly shameless. It is unrepentant about the global web of abuse it has spun in the name of counterterrorism."

We speakwith Amnesty International USA Executive Director Larry Cox.
Listen/Watch/Read http://www.democracynow.org/article.pl?sid=07/05/24/143235

Remember the Wife

The Rooster’s Wife

Polecat Creek
The Danny Daughtridge Trio will open at 6 p.m.

May 27
The Postmaster’s House
204 E. South Street, Aberdeen, NC
Admission $8., Children under 12 free
Gates open at 5:30 Picnics welcome.
Info: (910)944-750 theroosterswife.org
The Rooster’s Wife is a private non-profit association
organized to celebrate the performing arts in
Aberdeen, North Carolina.
Created to serve the community by preserving our cultural heritage
and presenting the talent of the next generation, the Rooster’s Wife is committed
to offering affordable programs for every age to enjoy.



Followers Must Now Lead

Blair: US may back carbon deal

Germany has made climate a priority for the G8 presidency

The US may be willing to back an agreement at next month's G8 summit on cutting carbon dioxide emissions, Tony Blair has said on BBC TV.

Up to now, the Bush administration has championed voluntary agreements as an alternative to imposing binding caps.

Germany has made climate change a priority for its G8 presidency.

The prime minister said awareness of the issue among Americans was growing and it was possible the US will sign up to "at least the beginnings" of action.

Last September, California became the first US state to set targets to reduce greenhouse gas emissions.

Speaking on the BBC's Newsnight programme, Mr Blair was asked how he was going to persuade President George W Bush to agree to national impose limits on CO2.

"You've got several of the states now doing it," Mr Blair said.

"I can't think that there're going to be many people running for presidential office next time round in the US who aren't going to have climate change in their programme."

He added: "I think it is possible that we will see action - and at least the beginnings of that action at the G8 - I hope so. That's what I'm arguing for."

Mr Blair's comments on Newsnight came after the G8 countries, together with China, India, Mexico, Brazil and South Africa, have been holding talks on emissions.

"For the first time, at least the Americans are in this G8 plus 5 process," Mr Blair said.

But only last week a UN-hosted meeting ended with the US indicating it was unlikely to take part in negotiations at the end of this year on a global agreement to cut emissions.

And according to documents seen by the BBC, the US is trying to block sections of a draft agreement on climate change prepared for the G8 summit.

Washington is said to object to the targets to keep the global temperature rise below 2C this century and halve greenhouse gas emissions by 2050.


CCNC Green Tie Awards

Green Tie Awards
Submitted by ryanteaguebeckwith
May 24, 2007

Four lawmakers were recognized for environmental efforts Wednesday.

House Speaker Joe Hackney, Sen. Janet Cowell, and Reps. Pricey Harrison and Carolyn Justice were honored by the Conservation Council of North Carolina at its first "Green Tie" dinner.

Hackney was given the Jane Sharp lifetime award for leading a state ban on phostpates in the mid 1980s and sponsoring the Clean Water Act of 1999.

Cowell, a Raleigh Democrat, was honored as "Senator of the Year" and Harrison, a Greensboro Democrat, was "Representative of the Year."

Justice, a Hampstead Republican, was recognized as a "Defender of the Environment" for a bill to increase environmental standards on hog farms.

Hummers Et Al


Population Tsunami in NC


RALEIGH – The Partnership for North Carolina's Future, a coalition of groups advocating increased state investments in school construction, affordable housing, roads, land and water conservation, and water and sewer services, urges the General Assembly's action.

Members of the partnership include Land for Tomorrow, the North Carolina League of Municipalities, the North Carolina Rural Economic Development Center, the North Carolina Housing Coalition, the North Carolina Association of County Commissioners, NC Go!, and the North Carolina Metropolitan Coalition.

According to the partnership, North Carolina is facing a "population tsunami" that the General Assembly must meet with significant new capital investments to protect the state's economy and quality of life.

At a news conference today in Raleigh, Tom Lambeth of the partnership urged the General Assembly to take "bold steps to protect the basic foundation upon which our communities' quality of life and economy is built – schools, roads, clean water and land protecting natural resources."

Lambeth is chairman of the Rural Economic Development Center board of directors and former director of the Z. Smith Reynolds Foundation.

"We stand together to say to the public: Your future is at risk," said Lambeth. "If the General Assembly doesn't address these critical needs now, it will cost our state jobs, damage our economy and adversely affect the livelihoods of families across North Carolina."

Lambeth said North Carolina is facing a "population tsunami" of four million people arriving between 2000 and 2030 for a total of 12 million, or a 50 percent increase. That will make North Carolina the seventh largest state, ahead of both Michigan and Ohio, and up from the current ranking of 10th.

Such a population increase will be nearly equal to South Carolina's current population of four million. "We've got to build the equivalent of a new South Carolina within this state," Lambeth said.

"We are falling behind," Lambeth said. "Existing sources of revenue are not enough to keep up with the combination of aging facilities and extraordinary population growth."

  • More than 178,000 K-12 students go to school every day in mobile units.
  • More than 3,000 miles of streams and rivers do not meet clean water standards.
  • More than 100,000 acres of forests, farmlands and natural areas are lost annually to Development.
  • Jammed roads and long-delayed highway construction plague cities and towns statewide.
  • Rural communities with inadequate and aging water and sewer services that create potential public health hazards.
  • More than two million people living in substandard housing or housing they can't afford, which contributes to health problems in children.
According to Dr. June Atkinson, state superintendent of public instruction, North Carolina school systems need to build 258 schools, or one per week on average every week for five years. Another 1,000 schools need renovations and still another 1,000 will need renovations during that five-year period.

"Whether it's rapid growth, poor roads, worn-out school buildings, or aging sewer lines and the lack of clean water, this state needs to make the necessary investment to repair, replace and get ready," said Asheville Mayor Terry Bellamy.

The partnership said that all funding options should be on the table to address the needs. Those include bond referenda, the local option land transfer tax, impact fees and the highway use tax.

More than 50 bills have been introduced recommending new sources of capital investment funds for schools, roads, affordable housing, water and sewer, and land that protects natural resources.

For more information about the Partnership for North Carolina's Future, visit www.ncfuturenow.org.


Cedars Cut in Southern Pines, Tree City

[Cedars cut on Ashe Street, Southern Pines]
"Shaylor said the First Baptist church will preserve trees on the street by moving the construction site through less sensitive places on the property." - from "SP Council to Consider Plans for Church Expansion," The Pilot, February 2006

It's the Water

[Water is also a central issue in Moore County's zoning questions. Don't develop without it!]

The Trailer on Farmer John


Get the Dirt on Farmer John



Security Violations--Shearon Harris

Problems, Action at Shearon Harris – and Annual Safety Meeting

1. More security violations confirmed at Shearon Harris N-Plant

NC WARN release:
Supervisors admit forcing guards to cheat on exams; feds earlier confirmed
other charges by guards

Today’s News & Observer: Nuke plant guards cheated
Federal probe says security bosses at Shearon Harris gave answers to tests

2. Rep. Price and local officials take action on fire violations
Today’s News & Observer: Shearon Harris dispute ramps up
Congress' staff asked to step in

* If you haven’t yet thanked Rep. Price, please make the short call:
Raleigh office: 919-859-5999

3. ANNUAL SAFETY REVIEW for Shearon Harris
Wednesday, May 23 New Horizons Fellowship, 820 East Williams St., Apex

6pm Citizens’ Meeting: The real Harris safety record
7pm NRC’s Meeting: Watch them play “Hide the Truth”

Come and discuss new and ongoing safety issues – and how to increase the public pressure for risk reduction measures – with NC WARN and allies at 6pm. Show Progress Energy that people of this region insist the company live up to its corporate slogan, “safety is our top priority.”

N.C. Waste Awareness & Reduction Network
P.O. Box 61051
Durham, NC 27715-1051
919-286-3985 fax
email: ncwarn@ncwarn.org


Next Concert, Aberdeen, May 27

The Rooster’s Wife
Summer on the Porch

Polecat Creek
The Danny Daughtridge Trio will open at 6 p.m.

May 27
The Postmaster’s House
204 E. South Street, Aberdeen, NC
Admission $8., Children under 12 free
Gates open at 5:30 Picnics welcome.
Info: (910)944-750 theroosterswife.org

The Rooster’s Wife
is a private non-profit association
organized to celebrate the performing arts in
Aberdeen, North Carolina.
Created to serve the community by preserving our cultural heritage
and presenting the talent of the next generation, the Rooster’s Wife
is committed to offering affordable programs for every age to enjoy.

The Science of Happiness

Happiness wins science book prize
An exploration of how people make themselves happy wins the prestigious Royal Society Prize for Science Books.
Full story: http://news.bbc.co.uk/go/em/-/2/hi/science/nature/6657843.stm

It's the Petrol

Locals seize Nigeria oil facility
Ogoni youths take over an oil facility in Nigeria's volatile Niger Delta leading to oil production cuts, officials say.
Full story: http://news.bbc.co.uk/go/em/-/2/hi/africa/6658773.stm


from Rooster's Wife, Aberdeen

What a wonderful start to a summer full of great music! The Drops were in great form. And how about Willa Brigham? Was she not terrific? You can email them and tell them how much you enjoyed their performances, and pick up more cds.
www.carolinachocolatedrops.com www.willabrigham.com

A special thanks goes out to the great sound team, Mike and Kathy Marion, and Mike Thamm who provided not only crisp sound but perfect weather.

In less than two weeks, the Rooster’s Wife will return to the porch at the Postmaster’s House with a pair of terrific trios. The Danny Daughtridge Trio will bring their original songs and great harmonies to the stage to open for Polecat Creek. This fine group offers up the best original roots country music that you will ever hear. If you did not get nearly enough when Polecat Creek opened for Garrison Keillor last spring, make your plan to be in Aberdeen, May 27th.

I want to make you aware of an important event in our area. The attachment will invite you to the opening of Laura Gingerich’s exhibit at the Hastings Gallery at Sandhills Community College. In addition to their beauty, these photographs are important for the intimate portrait they show of life in Lebanon, the West Bank, Israel, and Afghanistan. The exhibit runs through July.

Season passes for Summer on the Porch may be purchased a the gate with cash or check. $70. buys admission to any ten concerts. Individual admission is $8. with children under 12, FREE. The gates open at 5:30. Picnics are welcome. Bring a chair or blanket if you like. Show goes on rain or shine. We’ll see you there.


No Organic Bee Losses


Today! Please Call!

[from Helen Livingston, Laurinburg]

Below is an email that I sent to Senator Purcell. In case you have time to make some calls, I have listed committee members of the Senate Ag Committee. The meeting starts at 11:00 am on Tuesday, 5/15. Also included are excerpts from the Senate and the House Bills. I am sorry about the short notice.

Other than including municipal solid waste as a Renewable Energy and Energy Efficiency Portfolio Standard (REPS), these are grand bills, so be sure to include appreciation!


---------- Forwarded message ----------From: Helen Livingston < livingston.helen@gmail.com>Date: May 14, 2007 10:44 PM Subject: SB3To: "Senator William R. Purcell" < Williamp@ncleg.net>
Hello Bill,

I understand that the Senate Agriculture/Environment/Natural Resources is taking up SB3, the Renewable Energy Bill, on Tuesday, May 15th. The house equivilant does not include municipal solid waste as a renewable source. The waste industry very much wants state and federal tax dollars for their latest (unproven) "state of the art" technologies, under Renewable Energy Portfolio Standards. To do so would take funds and focus away from research and development leading to genuine energy efficiency progress. More trash leads in the opposite direction to the real solution, zero waste. The industry's interest in corporate profits provides powerful PR and lobbying. Please do not allow that to dilute NC's potential to accomplish true energy efficiency and environmental safety.

With appreciation,

Helen Livingston

Members of Senate Agriculture/Environment/Natural Resources
Sen. Charles W. Albertson
Vice Chairman
Sen. Austin M. Allran
Vice Chairman
Sen. Bob Atwater
Vice Chairman
Sen. Janet Cowell
Vice Chairman
Sen. Eleanor Kinnaird
Vice Chairman
Sen. A. B Swindell
Vice Chairman
Sen. David F. Weinstein
Sen. Daniel G. Clodfelter , Sen. Stan Bingham, Sen. Andrew C. Brock, Sen. Harry Brown, Sen. Don East, Sen. Fletcher L. Hartsell, Jr. , Sen. Clark Jenkins, Sen. Ed Jones , Sen. Jean Preston, Sen. Joe Sam Queen , Sen. Fred Smith, Sen. John Snow , Sen. Jerry W. Tillman

Below for both bills:
SECTION 2. Article 7 of Chapter 62 of the General Statutes is amended by adding a new section to read:"§ 62‑133.7. Renewable Energy and Energy Efficiency Portfolio Standard (REPS).
(a) As used in this section:
(4) [Senate] 'Renewable energy resource' means a solar, wind, hydropower, geothermal, ocean current or wave energy resource; a biomass resource, including agricultural waste, animal waste, wood waste, energy crop, or landfill methane; or hydrogen derived from a renewable energy resource. 'Renewable energy resource' does not include a fossil fuel or nuclear energy resource. [note: see house bill below, which "does not include ... municipal solid waste ...".]
(4) [House] 'Renewable energy resource' means a solar, wind, hydropower, geothermal, ocean current or wave energy resource; a biomass resource, including agricultural waste, animal waste, wood waste, energy crop, or landfill methane; or hydrogen, metered waste heat, or other metered thermal energy derived from a renewable energy resource. 'Renewable energy resource' does not include a fossil fuel, municipal solid waste, or nuclear energy resource. 'Renewable energy resource' does not include renewable energy generated as part of the NC Green Power Program. [note: this is the preferred wording for the Senate Bill]
Below is further detail about the two bills, FYI.

SB 3
Short Title: Promote Renewable Energy/Energy Efficiency.
Senators Albertson; Allran, Atwater, Bingham, Boseman, Cowell, Dalton, Jenkins, Kinnaird, Purcell, Queen, Snow, Stevens, Tillman, and Weinstein.
Referred to:
Agriculture/Environment/Natural Resources.
AN ACT to promote the development of renewable energy and ENERGY EFFICIENCY in the state through implementation of a ten percent renewable ENERGY and ENERGY Efficiency portfolio Standard (REPS).
(1) 'Electric power supplier' means a public utility, an electric membership corporation, or a municipality that sells electric power to retail electric power customers in the State.
(2) 'Energy efficiency measure' means a physical change to a building or equipment implemented on or after 1 January 2007 that results in a permanent reduction in overall demand for electric power while maintaining the same or improved level of energy service.
(3) 'New renewable energy facility' means a facility that generates electric power that is placed into service on or after 1 January 2007 and that delivers electric power generated by the use of a renewable energy resource to an electric power supplier.
(4) 'Renewable energy resource' means a solar, wind, hydropower, geothermal, ocean current or wave energy resource; a biomass resource, including agricultural waste, animal waste, wood waste, energy crop, or landfill methane; or hydrogen derived from a renewable energy resource. 'Renewable energy resource' does not include a fossil fuel or nuclear energy resource. [note: see house bill below, which also"does not include municipal solid waste".]

Short Title: Promote Renewable Energy/Energy Efficiency-2.
Representatives Harrison, J. Harrell, Martin, Justice (Primary Sponsors); Adams, Alexander, Allen, Bell, Bordsen, Braxton, Brown, Bryant, Carney, Church, Coates, Cole, Coleman, Dickson, England, Farmer‑Butterfield, Fisher, Glazier, Goforth, Goodwin, Haire, Hall, T. Harrell, Holliman, Hurley, Insko, Jeffus, Jones, Love, Luebke, McAllister, McLawhorn, Owens, Parmon, Pierce, Rapp, Ross, Saunders, Spear, Stiller, Thomas, Tolson, Tucker, Underhill, Wainwright, E. Warren, Weiss, Wiley, Wilkins, Williams, Womble, and Wray.
Referred to:
Rules, Calendar, and Operations of the House.
February 6, 2007
AN ACT to promote the development of renewable energy and ENERGY EFFICIENCY in the state through implementation of a twenty percent renewable ENERGY and ENERGY Efficiency portfolio Standard (REPS).
SECTION 2. Article 7 of Chapter 62 of the General Statutes is amended by adding a new section to read:
"§ 62‑133.7. Renewable Energy and Energy Efficiency Portfolio Standard (REPS).
(a) As used in this section:
(1) 'Electric power supplier' means a public utility, an electric membership corporation, or a municipality that sells electric power to retail electric power customers in the State.
(2) 'Energy efficiency measure' means a physical change to a building or equipment implemented on or after 1 January 2007 that results in a permanent reduction in overall demand for grid‑connected electric power while maintaining the same or improved level of energy service. 'Energy efficiency measure' includes combined heat and power (CHP) or other thermal energy. 'Energy efficiency measure' includes a demand response measure or load limiting measure only to the extent that the measure results in a demonstrated, long-term shift in the consumption of electric power by a retail customer from a peak demand period to a nonpeak demand period.
(3) 'New renewable energy facility' means a facility that generates electric power that was first placed into service on or after 1 January 2007 and that delivers electric power generated by the use of a renewable energy resource to an electric power supplier.
(4) 'Renewable energy resource' means a solar, wind, hydropower, geothermal, ocean current or wave energy resource; a biomass resource, including agricultural waste, animal waste, wood waste, energy crop, or landfill methane; or hydrogen, metered waste heat, or other metered thermal energy derived from a renewable energy resource. 'Renewable energy resource' does not include a fossil fuel, municipal solid waste, or nuclear energy resource. 'Renewable energy resource' does not include renewable energy generated as part of the NC Green Power Program. [note: this is the preferred wording for the Senate Bill]


It's the Climate

US seeks G8 climate text changes
The US tries to block sections of a draft agreement on climate change prepared for next month's G8 summit.
Full story: http://news.bbc.co.uk/go/em/-/2/hi/science/nature/6651295.stm

Charity warns of migration crisis
The effects of climate change could cause massive waves of migration, says the charity Christian Aid.
Full story: http://news.bbc.co.uk/go/em/-/2/hi/in_depth/6652573.stm

Birds 'starve' at S Korea wetland
Thousands of migrating birds face hardship because of a South Korean land project, conservationists say.
Full story: http://news.bbc.co.uk/go/em/-/2/hi/asia-pacific/6649233.stm


Karl Marx, Sou. Pines, May 18, 19, 20

Howard Zinn brings Karl Marx back to life to address a contemporary audience in Soho in this witty and insightful “play on history.” Marx has agitated with the authorities of the afterlife for a chance to clear his name. Through a bureaucratic error, however, Marx is sent to Soho in New York, rather than his old stomping ground in London, to make his case. Zinn introduces us to Marx's wife, Jenny, his children, the anarchist Mikhail Bakunin, and a host of other characters. Marx in Soho is a brilliant introduction to Marx's life, his analysis for society, and his passion for radical change — and the relevance of Marx's ideas for today.

(“I’ve read Marx in Soho and watched Fenton morph into Karl Marx. I highly recommend this fun and educational opportunity to learn some very important things about ourselves and the world we all live in.” — Tom Thompson )

May 18th & 19th at 7:30 p.m.
May 20 at 2:30 p.m.

Cost: $10.00

1:00 Today


"Sharon Mehdi wrote a wonderful short story for her five-year old granddaughter, The Great Silent Grandmother Gathering that has inspired us. A quick summary of the story is:

A busboy who worked in a café whose window faced the public park noticed that two grandmotherly looking women had been standing in the park all day without moving at all and without talking. They were dressed up in their Sunday best and were just staring at the town hall.

He asked the other patrons in the café what they thought the women were up to. They speculated on a variety of things. Then, a five-year old year who was in the café spoke up and said “One of them is my grandmother and I know what they are doing. They are standing there to save the world.”

All of the men in the café hooted and howled and laughed. On his way home the busboy decided to ask the women what they were doing and sure enough their answer was “We are saving the world.”

Over dinner that evening the busboy told his parents and he and his father hooted and howled, but his mother was totally silent. After dinner, the mother called her best friends to tell them.
The next morning the busboy looked out the café window and the two women were back, along with his mother, her friends, and the women who had been in the café the day before. All were standing in silence staring at the town hall.

Again, the men hooted and howled and said things like “You can't save the world by standing in the park. That is what we have armies for,” and “everyone knows you have to have banners and slogans to save the world–you can't do it by just standing in the park.”

The next day the women were joined by the women who were in the café the day before and a number of their friends. This brought the local newspaper reporter to the scene. He wrote a derisive article about the women.

The day after it appeared, hundreds of women showed up to stand in the park in silence.

The mayor then told the police chief to make the women leave because they were making the town appear to be foolish. When the police chief told them they would have to disperse because they didn't have a permit, one of them responded that “we are just individuals standing in our public park, and we are not giving speeches or having a demonstration, so why would we need a permit?” The police chief thought about this and agreed with them and left the park.
At this point 2,223 women including the mayor's wife, the police chief's wife, and one five-year old girl were standing in the park to save the world. The news quickly spread and soon women were standing all over the country. The story ended with women standing in every country throughout the globe, standing to save the world.
See www.grandmotherbook.com.

We will be standing for the world's children and grandchildren, and for the seven generations beyond them. We dream of a world where all of our children have safe drinking water, clean air to breathe, and enough food to eat. A world where they have access to a basic education to develop their minds and healthcare to nurture their growing bodies. A world where they have a warm, safe and loving place to call home. A world where they don't live in fear of violence–in their home, in their neighborhood, in their school or in their world. This is the world of which we dream. This is the cause for which we will stand.

If you share this dream, please stand with us for five minutes of silence at 1 p.m. your local time on May 13, 2007, in your local park, school yard, gathering place, or any place you deem appropriate, to signifiy your agreement with our dream.

We ask you to invite the men and boys who you care about to join you. We ask that you bring bells to ring at 1 p.m. to signify the beginning of the five minutes of silence and to ring again to signify the end of the period of silence.

During the silence, please think about what you individually and we collectively can do to attain this world. Please feel free to sit rather than stand. Afterwards, hopefully you and your loved ones can talk together about how we can bring about this world.

Balancing Act

Iran's Ahmadinejad to visit UAE
Iranian leader Mahmoud Ahmadinejad visits the United Arab Emirates, the first such visit since the 1979 revolution.
Full story:http://news.bbc.co.uk/go/em/-/2/hi/middle_east/6650745.stm


Petrol Blues

Putin starts Central Asia energy tour
Russia's President Putin begins a trip to Central Asia's main energy exporters - Kazakhstan and Turkmenistan.
Full story: http://news.bbc.co.uk/go/em/-/2/hi/asia-pacific/6641103.stm

China warns over climate change
China says is likely to be hit by more adverse weather this year than in the past decade, due to climate change.
Full story: http://news.bbc.co.uk/go/em/-/2/hi/asia-pacific/6641397.stm

Call Rep. Boylan, Support House Bill 77

H77 Promote Renewable Energy and Energy Efficiency

This legislation promotes the development of renewable energy and energy efficiency in North Carolina, implementing a 20% renewable energy and energy efficiency portfolio standard.
Passage of this legislation is supported by both NC Conservation Network and The Conservation Council of NC.

Boylan's phone: 919 733 5903 CALL TODAY PLEASE. Simple message: "I support House Bill 77."


Anti-Big Box Bill


Don't Forget

The Carolina Chocolate Drops
kick off the summer season
Sunday, May 13th
Postmaster’s House, 204 E. South St, downtown Aberdeen, NC
Grounds open at 5:30, picnics are welcome
Willa Brigham will open at about 6

Bring a chair or blanket if you like
Children under 12 free, admission $8 for everyone else
Cash and checks accepted, ATM at First Bank, intersection US 1 and Main St.
No pets please
Performance rain or shine

Go to www.theroosterswife.org for the entire schedule.
Looking forward to a great summer of music on the porch!

The Queen's Carbon Footprint



PUD Vote May 8--Be There!


This Council vote can forever change the character of our town.
The proposed PUD zoning was written by a developer, for the developer, for a specific development. It is a deeply flawed ordinance. It will allow massive high-density development in our town, including Morganton Road and other undeveloped areas.

PUD zoning is up for approval on May 8th


Twinkies Vs. Carrots

Compared with a bunch of carrots, a package of Twinkies is a highly complicated, high-tech piece of manufacture, involving no fewer than 39 ingredients, many themselves elaborately manufactured, as well as the packaging and a hefty marketing budget.

So how can the supermarket possibly sell a pair of these synthetic cream-filled pseudocakes for less than a bunch of roots?

You'll find the answer in this NYTimes article (link below) called "You Are What You Grow." Read the article. It will explain not only the answer to the above question, but why Americans are so obese and how our U.S. agricultural policy--the farm bill in particular--is going to continue fattening us up.

Click Read Enjoy


Moore Co. Beekeepers, May 8

7 PM

IMF vs. Asia

Asia to pool financial reserves
By Chris Xia BBC East Asia editor

Asian finance ministers have agreed to plans to pool the region's vast financial reserves to protect their currencies from speculative attack.
The agreement, reached at a meeting in Japan, comes almost 10 years after speculators triggered an economic crisis across the region in 1997.
Its effects were felt across the region and exposed the Asian economic miracle as having very shaky foundations.
It also forced a suspension of the New York stock exchange.
Under attack from the speculators, the so-called Asian Tigers like Thailand, Malaysia and Indonesia saw their currencies collapse.
In South Korea, bad debt among large corporations fuelled a stock market crash.

Pooling finances
But for many, the worst effects were yet to come.
Governments appealed to the International Monetary Fund for help. But the IMF imposed punitive conditions in return for stabilisation packages.
These often involved sharply reducing government spending, and raising interest rates, thereby forcing companies out of business.
Unemployment and poverty rose, and governments fell.
It is to prevent this kind of chaos that China, Japan, South Korea and members of the South East Asian grouping, Asean, have agreed the new plan to pool financial reserves in case they are needed.
It builds on an earlier initiative, aimed at allowing Asian countries to tackle a crisis locally before having to ask for help from the IMF.


Contaminated Ingredients

Need another reason to eat pastured meat from the farmer whose kids go to school with your kids? This week, the USDA admitted that the contaminated food ingredients that have killed thousands of pets across the U.S. were also used to feed hogs and chickens that have already been processed and eaten by several million Americans.

goto: organicconsumers.org

Preview the Chocolate Drops for May 13

Hi music lovers.
Go to mvyradio to listen to the live recording of the Drops performances at Merlefest this past weekend.

The Rooster’s Wife is offering season passes good for any 10 admissions for $70. You save a little cabbage for that souvenir CD you will want to pick up at the concert.

Our web site will be up the end of this week. Until then feel free to call for any information.

Looking forward to seeing you and all your friends at the Postmaster’s House, 204 E. South St., Aberdeen, May 13th, when we welcome Willa Brigham to start things off around 6 followed by the Carolina Chocolate Drops.

Bring a chair or blanket, and be ready to have a great time. Admission is $8, children under 12 are free. No smoking in the music area. No pets allowed. See you then!

Janet Kenworthy

Please Vote No on PUD

The Pilot has started a "PUD poll" to determine public support for the Southern Pines Town Council's adopting the Planned Urban Development.

Here are directions for PUD voting:

1. goto: http://www.thepilot.com
2. See the red check mark on opening page, right hand side.
3. Click on "READ MORE" appearing at bottom of wording.
4. Please VOTE "NO."

Let's hold out for a moratorium that will allow time to write a better zoning ordinance.

Zinn on Activism

Published on Friday, May 4, 2007 by Yale Daily News
Historian Howard Zinn Calls for Activism
by Lea Yu
NEW HAVEN, Conn. - Howard Zinn may be a historian, but he lives in the present.
As demonstrators for immigrant rights made their way around New Haven on May Day, Zinn assumed the stage at the Center Church on the New Haven Green, stressing the need for youth to engage in activism, to understand the darker aspects of American domestic and foreign policy, and to distinguish between allegiance to a government and allegiance to a country.
Evoking a rare mixture of political seriousness and light-hearted wit, the 84-year-old history professor spoke conversationally, prompting many audience members to laugh at his sense of humor or applaud when his musings culminated in calls for change.
“Our interests are not the same [as the government’s], despite our culture and the way it tries to indoctrinate us into thinking our interests are the same … we and the government, Exxon and me,” Zinn said to long, drawn-out laughter.
“Bush,” he then said with a pause, “and the young person he sends to war do not have the same interests.”
Strenuous clapping ensued.
The event, sponsored by Labyrinth Books, coincided with the release of Zinn’s “A Young People’s History of the United States,” a youth-oriented articulation of his seminal “A People’s History of the United States.” Though he emphasized that the two books do not differ substantially and that his message was the same to Americans both young and old, Zinn’s speech on Tuesday focused on the need for the “next generation of youth” to question the government and understand its complexities - an implicit criticism of what he sees as older Americans’ failures to do the same.
“We need something better,” he said. “With the situation we’re in, we can’t afford to have another generation that will go along with war. Or another nation that will go along with the nation’s enormous militarism.”
Youth today need to recognize the presence of social upheaval in America’s past in order to recognize the importance of activism, Zinn said, but history teaching has traditionally emphasized American unity while ignoring social movements and conflicts of interest that steered the country toward historical change.
As a result, he said, young people become discouraged when only 20 people show up for a war protest rally; they have no idea that the civil rights protests failed on multiple occasions before the movement saw even an inkling of attention or success.
Also lost upon American youth is the nation’s history of ignoring the interests of common people, Zinn said. He said events such as the Vietnam War exemplify the United States’s long record of using foreign policy to acquire needed resources, while operating under the guise of liberty, self-determination and freedom.
In short, youth today have the daunting task of separating themselves from a self-righteous national culture, Zinn said. In spite of the hubbub over America’s greatness, the historian said, the nation significantly trails many other countries when it comes to literacy rates, infant mortality and the promotion of human rights. Illustrating what he termed the hypocrisy of America’s condemnation of nuclear weapons, Zinn recalled a letter that his friend, the late Kurt Vonnegut, had sent to the New York Times.
“Not saying anything about Iran or North Korea, his letter just said this: ‘I know of only one country that has dropped nuclear weapons on defenseless people,’” Zinn said. “The Times did not print his letter.”
Most in the audience were old enough to have lived through the 1960s and ’70s, when Vonnegut first attracted a cult following, although young adults nearly composed a third of the audience. For New Haven resident Pat Topitzer, Zinn’s words reminded her of her own youth protest experiences and addressed what she considered a pressing issue.
“I think for people … it is startling [to see] the lack of involvement of young people,” she said. “We had [an anti-war] demonstration last year on the corner of Elm and York streets and it absolutely rocked me - there we were on the corner of two residential colleges and only one college student came out.”
Local resident Baub Biden said he found the youth turnout at the talk encouraging, but that it would take more than a re-evaluation of American history to change young people’s mentalities.
“You have a lot of people you are distracted by VH1, MTV, BET, and every time you turn on the TV there’s a reality show that’s kind of catchy,” Biden said. “So these people are at home, and they’re watching all of these distractions and they’re all talking about Britney Spears cutting her hair.”
Although he was not in attendance at Zinn’s speech, history professor Jean-Christophe Agnew said he had a great deal of respect for Zinn’s historical work, which he called highly influential and widely used. Though historians make it their work to study the past, it is not unusual for prominent professors such as Zinn to weigh in on current events, he said, citing a resolution opposing the war in Iraq that was recently ratified by the American Historical Association.
But that does not mean that all historians share the same point of view.
“In these moments of crisis, when the country is split … so historians are split,” Agnew said.
Copyright 1995-2007 Yale Daily News Publishing Company, Inc.

Bush Doesn't Matter

Rice-breeder joins world leaders

A Sierra Leone scientist is voted among the world's most influential people by the US Time magazine.

Full story:http://news.bbc.co.uk/go/em/-/2/hi/africa/6625931.stm

To Stop the Trawling

South Pacific to stop bottom trawling [devastation to coral and other marine life]

A quarter of the world's oceans will be protected from bottom trawling, South Pacific nations agree.

Full story:http://news.bbc.co.uk/go/em/-/2/hi/science/nature/6627425.stm

Environmental News to Use

Conservation Insider Bulletin
Published weekly for the Conservation Council of North Carolina
Conservation News to Peruse & Use
Editor: Dan Besse, earthvote@ccnccpac.org

May 4, 2007

Few new environmental bombshells dropped this week in policy debates being monitored by CIB, but there was noteworthy forward movement on some important fronts:
--Legislative Watch: Tax Relief for Wildlife Conservation
--Around the Globe: Climate Change Report Advances
--Washington Watch: Energy Legislation Moves Forward
--Movement Politics: Mund Moves to SELC

Legislative Watch: Tax Relief for Wildlife Conservation

CCNC lobbyist Mike Nelson made proposals to use tax law for conservation ends the focus topic of his legislative report "Hot List" this week. In particular, he pitches for SB 1203, "Present Use Value Changes", as an important tool for wildlife conservation. (SB 1203's principal sponsor is Sen. Martin Nesbitt, D-Buncombe.)

The problem, as explained by Nelson and remedied by SB 1203, is that land in North Carolina is normally taxed at its potential market sales value, not its actual use value. This tends to pressure many landowners into selling for development land that they would be just as happy otherwise to retain in some lower-impact use.

There are limited exceptions under present law, especially for land actively used for the commercial production of agricultural or forestry products. Private land which is deliberately managed for non-commercial wildlife habitat or water quality protection does not receive similar treatment. SB 1203 would fix that problem, by establishing a new "present use value" taxation category for lands managed for wildlife conservation. To be eligible for the property tax break, owners would have to get a management plant approved by the N.C. Wildlife Resources Commission.

Yes, we know that the details of tax relief excite few folk beyond the ranks of accountants and tax lawyers, but the impacts of these changes could make for big green mojo. North Carolina is losing 100,000 acres of forests every year under current law. We need incentives to cut that rate of loss. This is one. Nelson encourages CCNC members and volunteers to contact their legislators in support of SB 1203.

Around the Globe: Climate Change Report Advances

Back in early February, CIB reported on the new conclusions by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) and its international panel of hundreds of climate scientists. The science panel's unanimous conclusions found that global warming is already taking place, and that human impacts are responsible for pushing its pace. The IPCC was created by the United Nations in 1988, and has come to involve 113 governments (including the United States). Its reports, updated about every five years, have become increasingly insistent about the reality of climate change, its human origins, its potential for disastrous impacts, and the urgent necessity for action to address it.

Since the IPCC's scientists reached their consensus conclusions on what's happening and why, the participating governments have been wrangling over the language of the IPCC's final 2007 report, on how we should respond. This latest report addresses technologies and policies that could help to mitigate climate change and its damages. Most participating governments want strong language and aggressive recommendations. Some, including China and (shamefully) the U.S., have tried to water down the suggestions.

As of the news reports from early today, the advocates for aggressive suggestions and goals are said to have largely prevailed. CIB certainly hopes that is the case. We look forward to seeing strong IPCC recommendations used in Congressional and state-level policy debates around the nation.

Washington Watch: Energy Legislation Moves Forward

Legislation under consideration by Congress nearly always moves with the lightning speed of thick molasses on a Mount Mitchell winter morning, and a major energy bill under development this year is no exception. The good news this week, however, is that the process has now passed at least one important milestone.

The U.S. Senate's Energy and Natural Resources Committee on Wednesday approved, on a 20 to 3 vote, legislation that would set a goal of cutting gasoline consumption nearly in half by 2030. The bill would accomplish this goal through a combination of increased biofuels (including cellulosic ethanol), production of more gas-electric hybrids, and other fuel-saving approaches. The bill also includes requirements for more efficient appliances and lighting.

The committee rejected on a 12-11 vote a proposal to require the use of liquefied coal as an alternative motor fuel. (Creeping crunch! Burning less oil by burning more coal? There's noting remotely environmentally friendly about that. It would have pleased the financial backers of certain coal-producing states' senators, though. The committee was right to reject that non-biodegradable additive to the bill's recipe.)

National energy legislation has long rows yet to hoe this year, but we commend the Senate committee for one step in the right direction.

Movement Politics: Mund Moves to SELC

Former CCNC lobbyist Nat Mund will soon wear a new hat in Washington. Mund has been hired to start the Southern Environmental Law Center's (SELC) new Washington office as its first national Legislative Director. Since his five years (1996-2001) as CCNC's Director of Governmental Relations, Mund has been the green man in demand in D.C. He's worked for the Sierra Club, the League of Conservation Voters, and now SELC. (The remarkable thing is that everybody he's worked for still likes Nat and wishes him the best! His experience puts him in a great spot to assist with inter-organizational cooperation.) He officially starts his new post in mid-June.

Petrini Food Lecture, May 23

Farm-to-Fork Exploration: A Free Carlo Petrini Lecture

Wednesday, May 23, 7:00 p.m.
NCSU McKimmon Center
1101 Gorman Street, Raleigh

Carlo Petrini will lead a discussion on the meaning and value of preserving food traditions, defending biodiversity, and protecting food that is good, clean, and fair.

The lecture is free and open to the public. Reserved seating is available. For reserved seating information, visit on-line at www.cefs.ncsu.edu or contact Lisa Forehand at 919-513-0954.


Karl Marx in Southern Pines

[May 5 is Marx's birthday.]
Marx Is Back!
The Awakened Heart Center will present
Marx in Soho
A one character play, written by renowned people’s historian Howard Zinn, which combines hard-hitting information with humor, sharp politics and sheer delight. Marx in Soho won the 2000 Independent Publisher Award for best visionary fiction.

Directed by Marcela Casals, and
produced and performed by Fenton Wilkinson.

Howard Zinn brings Karl Marx back to life to address a contemporary audience in Soho in this witty and insightful “play on history.” Marx has agitated with the authorities of the afterlife for a chance to clear his name. Through a bureaucratic error, however, Marx is sent to Soho in New York, rather than his old stomping ground in London, to make his case.
Zinn introduces us to Marx's wife, Jenny, his children, the anarchist Mikhail Bakunin, and a host of other characters. Marx in Soho is a brilliant introduction to Marx's life, his analysis for society, and his passion for radical change — and the relevance of Marx's ideas for today.

The Gilbert Theater
Bow & Green Streets Fayetteville, NC
May 4th, 5th, 11th & 12th at 8:00 p.m.
May 6th & 13th at 2:00 & 8:00 p.m.
Cost: $10.00 For reservations: 910 678-7186

The Awakened Heart Center
130 N Ashe St Southern Pines, NC
May 18th & 19th at 7:30 p.m.
May 20 at 2:30 p.m.
Cost: $10.00 For reservations: 910 315-9252

Global Movement Popping

Paul Hawken A Global Democratic Movement Is About to Pop

Paul Hawken writes: "I have given nearly one thousand talks about the environment in the past fifteen years, and after every speech a smaller crowd gathered to talk, ask questions, and exchange business cards.
The people offering their cards were working on the most salient issues of our day: climate change, poverty, deforestation, peace, water, hunger, conservation, human rights and more. They looked after rivers and bays, educated consumers about sustainable agriculture, retrofitted houses with solar panels, lobbied state legislatures about pollution, fought against corporate-weighted trade policies, worked to green inner cities, or taught children about the environment.
Quite simply, they were trying to safeguard nature and ensure justice."

Climate Change--Solutions?


Zinn on Anarchism

A Power Governments Cannot Suppress By Howard Zinn City Lights
Thursday 03 May 2007
An excerpt from Howard Zinn's new book - a collection of essays on history, class and the strength of ordinary citizens - explores the unfair trial of Sacco and Vanzetti and the flawed justice system that still haunts us today.
Fifty years after the executions of Italian immigrants Sacco and Vanzetti, Governor Dukakis of Massachusetts set up a panel to judge the fairness of the trial, and the conclusion was that the two men had not received a fair trial. This aroused a minor storm in Boston.
One letter, signed John M. Cabot, U.S. Ambassador Retired, declared his "great indignation" and pointed out that Governor Fuller's affirmation of the death sentence was made after a special review by "three of Massachusetts' most distinguished and respected citizens - President Lowell of Harvard, President Stratton of MIT and retired Judge Grant."
Those three "distinguished and respected citizens" were viewed differently by Heywood Broun, who wrote in his column for the New York World immediately after the Governor's panel made its report. He wrote:
It is not every prisoner who has a President of Harvard University throw on the switch for him .... If this is a lynching, at least the fish peddler and his friend the factory hand may take unction to their souls that they will die at the hands of men in dinner jackets or academic gowns.
Heywood Broun, one of the most distinguished journalists of the twentieth century, did not last long as a columnist for the New York World.
On that fiftieth year after the execution, The New York Times reported that: "Plans by Mayor Beame to proclaim next Tuesday 'Sacco and Vanzetti Day' have been canceled in an effort to avoid controversy, a City Hall spokesman said yesterday."
There must be good reason why a case fifty-years-old, now over seventy-five years old, arouses such emotion. I suggest that it is because to talk about Sacco and Vanzetti inevitably brings up matters that trouble us today - our system of justice, the relationship between war fever and civil liberties, and most troubling of all, the ideas of anarchism: the obliteration of national boundaries and therefore of war, the elimination of poverty, the creation of a full democracy.
The case of Sacco and Vanzetti revealed, in its starkest terms, that the noble words inscribed above our courthouses "Equal Justice Before the Law" have always been a lie. Those two men, the fish peddler and the shoemaker, could not get justice in the American system - because justice is not meted out equally to the poor and the rich, the native-born and the foreign-born, the orthodox and the radical, the white and the person of color. And while injustice may play itself out today more subtly and in more intricate ways than it did in the crude circumstances of the Sacco and Vanzetti case, its essence remains.
In their case, the unfairness was flagrant. They were being tried for robbery and murder, but in the minds, and in the behavior of the prosecuting attorney, the judge, and the jury, the important thing about them was that they were, as Upton Sinclair put it in his remarkable novel Boston, "wops," foreigners, poor workingmen, radicals.
Here is a sample of the police interrogation:
Police: Are you a citizen?
Sacco: No.
Police: Are you a Communist?
Sacco: No.
Police: Anarchist.
Sacco: No.
Police: Do you believe in this government of ours?
Sacco: Yes, Some things I like different.
What did these questions have to do with the robbery of a shoe factory in South Braintree, Massachusetts, and the shooting of a paymaster and a guard?
Sacco was lying, of course. No, I'm not a Communist. No, I'm not an anarchist. Why would he lie to the police? Why would a Jew lie to the Gestapo? Why would a black in South Africa lie to his interrogators? Why would a dissident in Soviet Russia lie to the secret police? Because they all know there is no justice for them.
Has there ever been justice in the American system for the poor, the person of color, the radical? When the eight anarchists of Chicago were sentenced to death after the Haymarket riot (a police riot, that is) of 1886, it was not because there was any proof of a connection between them and the bomb thrown in the midst of the police - not a shred of evidence. It was because they were leaders of the anarchist movement in Chicago.
When Eugene Debs and a thousand others were sent to prison during World War I, under the Espionage Act, was it because they were guilty of espionage? Hardly. They were socialists who spoke out against the war. In affirming the ten-year sentence of Debs, Supreme Court Justice Oliver Wendell Holmes made it clear why Debs must go to prison. He quoted from Debs' speech: "The master class has always declared the wars, the subject class has always fought the battles."
Holmes, much admired as one of our great liberal jurists, made clear the limits of liberalism, its boundaries set by a vindictive nationalism. After all the appeals of Sacco and Vanzetti had been exhausted, the case was put before Holmes, sitting on the Supreme Court. He refused to review the case, thus letting the verdict stand.
In our time, Ethel and Julius Rosenberg were sent to the electric chair. Was it because they were guilty beyond a reasonable doubt of passing atomic secrets to the Soviet Union? Or was it because they were Communists, as the prosecutor made clear, with the approval of the judge? Was it also because the country was in the midst of anti-Communist hysteria, Communists had just taken power in China, there was a war in Korea, and the weight of all that could be borne by two American Communists?
Why was George Jackson, in California, sentenced to ten years in prison for a seventy-dollar robbery, and then shot to death by guards? Was it because he was poor, black, and radical?
Can a Muslim today, in the atmosphere of the "war on terrorism" be given equal justice before the law? Why was my upstairs neighbor, a dark-skinned Brazilian who might look like a Middle East Muslim, pulled out of his car by police, though he had violated no regulation, and questioned and humiliated?
Why are the two million people in American jails and prisons, and six million people under parole, probation, or surveillance, disproportionately people of color, disproportionately poor? A study showed that seventy percent of the people in New York state prisons came from seven neighborhoods in New York City-neighborhoods of poverty and desperation.
Class injustice cuts across every decade, every century of our history. In the midst of the Sacco Vanzetti case, a wealthy man in the town of Milton, south of Boston, shot and killed a man who was gathering firewood on his property. He spent eight days in jail, then was let out on bail, and was not prosecuted. The district attorney called it "justifiable homicide." One law for the rich, one law for the poor-a persistent characteristic of our system of justice.
But being poor was not the chief crime of Sacco and Vanzetti. They were Italians, immigrants, anarchists. It was less than two years from the end of the first World War. They had protested against the war. They had refused to be drafted. They saw hysteria mount against radicals and foreigners, observed the raids carried out by Attorney General Palmer's agents in the Department of Justice, who broke into homes in the middle of the night without warrants, held people incommunicado, and beat them with clubs and blackjacks.
In Boston, five hundred were arrested, chained together and marched through the streets. Luigi Galleani, editor of the anarchist paper Cronaca Sovversiva, to which Sacco and Vanzetti subscribed, was picked up in Boston and quickly deported.
Something even more frightening had happened. A fellow anarchist of Sacco and Vanetti, a typesetter named Andrea Salsedo, who lied in New York, was kidnapped by members of the Federal Bureau of Investigation (I use the word "kidnapped" to describe an illegal seizure of a person), and held in FBI offices on the fourteenth floor of the Park Row Building. He was not allowed to call his family, friends, or a lawyer, was questioned and beaten, according to a fellow prisoner. During the eighth week of his imprisonment, on May 3, 1920, the body of Salsedo, smashed to a pulp, was found on the pavement near the Park Row Building, and the FBI announced that he had committed suicide by jumping from the fourteenth floor window of the room in which they had kept him. This was just two days before Sacco and Vanzetti were arrested.
We know today, as a result of Congressional reports in 1975, of the FBI's COINTELPRO program in which FBI agents broke into people's homes and offices, carried out illegal wiretaps, were involved in acts of violence to the point of murder and collaborated with the Chicago police in the killing of two Black Panther leaders in 1969. The FBI and the CIA have violated the law again and again. There is no punishment for them.
There is little reason to have faith that the civil liberties of people in this country would be protected in the atmosphere of hysteria that followed 9/11 and continues to this day. At home there have been immigrant round-ups, indefinite detentions, deportations, and unauthorized domestic spying. Abroad there have extra-judicial killings, torture, bombings, war, and military occupations.
Likewise, the trial of Sacco and Vanzetti began immediately after Memorial Day, a year and a half after the orgy of death and patriotism that was World War I, when the newspapers still vibrating with the roll of drums and the jingo rhetoric.
Twelve days into the trial, the press reported that the bodies of three soldiers had been transferred from the battlefields of France to the city of Brockton, and that the whole town had turned out for a patriotic ceremony. All of this was in newspapers that members of the jury could read.
Sacco was cross-examined by prosecutor Katzmann:
Question: Did you love this country in the last week of May, 1917?
Sacco: That is pretty hard for me to say in one word, Mr. Katzmann.
Question: There are two words you can use, Mr. Sacco, yes or no. What one is it?
Sacco: Yes
Question: And in order to show your love for this United States of America when she was about to call upon you to become a soldier you ran away to Mexico?
At the beginning of the trial, Judge Thayer (who, speaking to a golf acquaintance, had referred to the defendants during the trial as "those anarchist bastards"), said to the jury: "Gentlemen, I call upon you to render this service here that you have been summoned to perform with the same spirit of patriotism, courage and devotion to duty as was exhibited by our soldier boys across the seas."
The emotions evoked by a bomb that exploded at Attorney General Palmer's home during a time of war - like emotions set loose by the violence of 9/11 - created an anxious atmosphere in which civil liberties were compromised.
Sacco and Vanzetti understood that whatever legal arguments their lawyers could come up with would not prevail against the reality of class justice. Sacco told the court, on sentencing: "I know the sentence will be between two classes, the oppressed class and the rich class ... That is why I am here today on this bench, for having been of the oppressed class."
That viewpoint seems dogmatic, simplistic. Not all court decisions are explained by it. But, lacking a theory that fits all cases, Sacco's simple, strong view is surely a better guide to understanding the legal system than one which assumes a contest among equals based on an objective search for truth.
Vanzetti knew that legal arguments would not save them. Unless a million Americans were organized, he and his friend Sacco would die. Not words, but struggle. Not appeals, but demands. Not petitions to the governor, but take-overs of the factories. Not lubricating the machinery of a supposedly fair system to make it work better, but a general strike to bring the machinery to a halt.
That never happened. Thousands demonstrated, marched, protested, not just in New York City, Boston, Chicago, San Francisco, but in London, Paris, Buenos Aires, South Africa. It wasn't enough. On the night of their execution, thousands demonstrated in Charlestown, but kept away from the prison by a huge assembly of police. Protesters were arrested. Machine-guns were on the rooftops and great searchlights swept the scene.
A great crowd assembled in Union Square on August 23,1927. A few minutes after midnight, prison lights dimmed as the two men were electrocuted. The New York World described the scene: "The crowd responded with a giant sob. Women fainted in fifteen or twenty places. Others, too overcome, dropped to the curb and buried their heads in their hands. Men leaned on one anothers' shoulders and wept."
Their ultimate crime was their anarchism, an idea which today still startles us like a bolt of lightning because of its essential truth: we are all one, national boundaries and national hatreds must disappear, war is intolerable, the fruits of the earth must be shared, and only through organized struggle against authority can such a world come about.
What comes to us today from the case of Sacco and Vanzetti is not just tragedy, but inspiration. Their English was not perfect, but when they spoke it was a kind of poetry. Vanzetti said of his friend Sacco:
Sacco is a heart, a faith, a character, a man; a man lover of nature and mankind. A man who gave all, who sacrifice all to the cause of liberty and to his love for mankind: money, rest, mundane ambition, his own wife, his children, himself and his own life ... Oh yes, I may be more witful, as some have put it, I am a better babbler than he is, but many, many times, in hearing his heartful voice ring a faith sublime, in considering his supreme sacrifice, remembering his heroism I felt small, small at the presence of his greatness, and found myself compelled to fight back from my eyes the tears, quench my heart throbbing to my throat to not weep before him - this man called chief and assassin and doomed.
Worst of all, they were anarchists, meaning they had some crazy notion of a full democracy in which neither foreignness nor poverty would exist, and thought that without these provocations, war among nations would end for all time. But for this to happen the rich would have to be fought and their riches confiscated. That anarchist idea is a crime much worse than robbing a payroll, and so to this day the story of Sacco and Vanzetti cannot be recalled without great anxiety.
Sacco wrote to his son Dante: "So son, instead of crying, be strong, so as to be able to comfort your mother ... take her for a long walk in the quiet country, gathering wild flowers here and there, resting under the shade of trees ... But remember always, Dante, in this play of happiness, don't you use all for yourself only ... help the persecuted and the victim because they are your better friends .... In this struggle of life you will find more love and you will be loved."
Yes, it was their anarchism, their love for humanity, which doomed them. When Vanzetti was arrested, he had a leaflet in his pocket, advertising a meeting to take place in five days. It is a leaflet that could be distributed today, all over the world, as appropriate now as it was the day of their arrest. It read:
You have fought all the wars. You have worked for all the capitalists. You have wandered over all the countries. Have you harvested the fruits of your labors, the price of your victories? Does the part comfort you? Does the present smile on you? Does the future promise you anything? Have you found a piece of land where you can live like a human being and die like a human being? On these questions, on this argument, and on this theme, the struggle for existence, Bartolomeo Vanzetti will speak.
That meeting did not take place. But their spirit still exists today with people who believe and love and struggle all over the world.

Agrichar a New Industry? Biofuel

Kelpie Wilson Birth of a New Wedge
As delegates met in Bangkok this week to debate climate change solutions contained
in the IPCC's latest report, one technology not mentioned in the draft report was being closely examined at a conference in Australia.

The first meeting of the International Agrichar Initiative convened about 100 scientists, policymakers, farmers and investors with the goal of birthing an entire new industry to produce a biofuel that goes beyond carbon neutral and is actually carbon negative. The industry could provide a "wedge" of carbon reduction amounting to a minimum of ten percent of world emissions and possibly much more.

"The exceptional properties of charcoal in soil were first noticed in
the Amazon where there are large areas of what is called "terra preta"
or Amazonian dark earths. These dark earths can be several feet deep and
contain up to nine percent carbon, as compared with nearby soils that
have only about half of one percent. In one of the most fascinating
aspects of this story, the terra preta soils turn out to have been
deliberately created by a lost Amazonian civilization. Some of the areas
have been dated going back to more than 7,000 years, and they are still
highly fertile.
Field trials and experiments in pots show impressive yield gains in
charcoal-amended soils, but so far researchers don't completely
understand why. One question is whether the effect is primarily chemical
and physical or primarily biological. Charcoal is a highly porous
material that is very good at holding nutrients like nitrogen and
phosphorus and making them available to plant roots. It also aerates
soil and helps it retain water.
Charcoal's pores also make excellent habitat for a variety of soil
microorganisms and fungi. Think of a coral reef that provides structure
and habitat for a bewildering variety of marine species. Charcoal is
like a reef on a micro-scale.
One of the research papers presented at the conference documented an
increased diversity of beneficial microbes in terra preta soils as
compared with unamended soils, but there are still no answers about
whether the fertility increase is due to physical or biological factors.
The best answer may be that it is both.
One very evident tension at the conference was between the
scientists who are trying to better understand how agrichar works, and
the farmers and investors who want to apply the technology as soon as
possible. But one obstacle to deploying agrichar is the ability to
quantify its effects in order to create both a reliable product for
farmers and a solid guarantee of agrichar's carbon-fixing capacity for
the carbon-trading market. "

Natural Hives Less Vulnerable

"Natural" beehives appear less affected by the strange new plague dubbed colony collapse disorder.
Colony Collapse Disorder in domestic honey bees is all the buzz lately, mostly because honey bees pollinate food crops for humans.
However, we would not be so dependent on commercial non-native factory farmed honey bees if we were not killing off native pollinators. Organic agriculture does not use chemicals or crops toxic to bees and, done properly, preserves wildlife habitat in the vicinity, recognizing the intimate relationship between cultivated fields and natural areas.
While no one is certain why honey bee colonies are collapsing, factory farmed honey bees are more susceptible to stress from environmental sources than organic or feral honey bees. Most people think beekeeping is all natural but in commercial operations the bees are treated much like livestock on factory farms.
I’m on an organic beekeeping email list of about 1,000 people, mostly Americans, and no one in the organic beekeeping world, including commercial beekeepers, is reporting colony collapse on this list. The problem with commercial operations is pesticides used in hives to fumigate for varroa mites and antibiotics are fed to the bees to prevent disease. Hives are hauled long distances by truck, often several times during the growing season, to provide pollination services to industrial agriculture crops, which further stresses the colonies and exposes them to agricultural pesticides and GMOs.
Bees have been bred for the past 100 years to be much larger than they would be if left to their own devices. If you find a feral honeybee colony in a tree, for example, the cells bees use for egg-laying will be about 4.9 mm wide. This is the size they want to build – the natural size.
The foundation wax that beekeepers buy have cells that are 5.4 mm wide so eggs laid in these cells produce much bigger bees. It’s the same factory farm mentality we’ve used to produce other livestock – bigger is better. But the bigger bees do not fare as well as natural-size bees.
Varroa mites, a relatively new problem in North America, will multiply and gradually weaken a colony of large bees so that it dies within a few years. Mites enter a cell containing larvae just before the cell is capped over with wax. While the cell is capped, the bee transforms into an adult and varroa mites breed and multiply while feeding on the larvae.
The larvae of natural bees spend less time in this capped over stage, resulting in a significant decrease in the number of varroa mites produced. In fact, very low levels of mites are tolerated by the bees and do not affect the health of the colony. Natural-size bees, unlike large bees, detect the presence of varroa mites in capped over cells and can be observed chewing off the wax cap and killing the mites. Colonies of natural-size bees are healthier in the absence mites, which are vectors for many diseases.
It’s now possible to buy small cell foundation from US suppliers, but most beekeepers in Canada have either never heard of small cell beekeeping, aren’t willing to put the effort into changing or are skeptical of the benefits. This alternative is not promoted at all by the Canadian Honey Council, an organization representing the beekeeping industry, which even tells its members on their website that, “The limitations to disease control mean that losses can be high for organic beekeepers.” [ref link]
Organic beekeeping, as defined by certification agencies, allows the use of less toxic chemicals. It’s more an IPM approach to beekeeping than organic.
Commercial beekeeping today is just another cog in the wheel of industrial agriculture – necessary because pesticides and habitat loss are killing native pollinators, and vast tracks of monoculture crops aren’t integrated into the natural landscape.
In an organic Canada, native pollinators would flourish and small diversified farms would keep their own natural bees for pollination and local honey sales.
The factory farm aspects of beekeeping, combined with an onslaught of negative environmental factors, puts enough stress on the colonies that they are more susceptible to dying out.
Some small cell beekeeping resources:
Organic Beekeeper list http://pets.groups.yahoo.com/group/Organicbeekeepers/
Michael Bush’s site: http://www.bushfarms.com/bees.htm
BeeSource: http://www.beesource.com/pov/lusby/index.htm

Sharon Labchuk Earth Action (and organic beekeeper) Sharon Labchuk is a longtime environmental activist and part-time organic beekeeper from Prince Edward Island. She has twice run for national Parliament, making a strong showings around 5% for Canada’s fledgling Green Party. She is leader of the provincial wing of the party.