Identity            May 14, 2016

One Planet II

A photo taken in Sydney, Australia in 2008 – one of those used in my new One Planet video.

My 1983 pro-environment anti-nuke song that appeared less relevant a decade ago has gained new, urgent relevance with the relentless provocation of Russia by neocon-controlled “New American Century”  revivalists that, for some time now, have hijacked US foreign policy.

Back then the situation was so scary that I wrote two songs on the nuke issue. We seem back in perilous times.

I’ve replaced the old One Planet video with a much better video produced using new equipment and software. It is in new, HD photos taken by me with great quotations from female and male thinkers on world issues.

I call the video, “One Planet II.” It is also on the My Songs page in my header.

Dr. Vandana Shiva, author of the photo’s quote, is a brave, brilliant agricultural activist from India, known as the Seed Lady for her successful securing of seed banks of key, traditional plants against their extinction. Traditional seeds are now threatened by the patenting of seed for profit perpetrated by all-powerful corporations like Monsanto.

The #TPP: A Disgrace of Planetary Proportions

imageToday is a key day in the negotiations for the Trans Pacific Partnership trade agreement. Japan is going home on Monday. I hope that it does not pass.

This is a quick summary of some stuff I tweeted today in response to a tweet by a concerned @inky_mark that links to a Globe and Mail article about the now or never aspect of this trade deal.

The Globe and Mail falsely holds up #TPP as vital to Canada’s future trade and growth.

What the Globe doesn’t say is that the TPP is anti-CBC, anti small farms, anti Canada Post, anti public utilities and any vital national service that is publicly funded and not “profitable.”

Wikileaks has exposed the TPP as a “backdoor to privatization” of State-Owned Enterprises (SOE’s).

The TPP would be an impregnable legal fortress defending the unsustainable, planet-killing growth of unfettered capitalism. A vehicle for corporations to sue countries for enacting laws that protect the environment or the marginalized if these laws impact the sacred “God-given” rights of multinational corporations (MNC’s).

In their otherwise useful article, the Globe and Mail deceives by omission as usual. It has shed light on some of the details, but has left out the dangerous points I raise above.

Then there is the overall picture:

In essence the TPP, led principally by U.S. corporations, including the beneficiaries of its obscene war machine, is America’s latest attempt to isolate China, Europe and BRICS Nations. It ignores issues of environmental sustainability. By replacing publicly-funded institutions with more expensive private corporations it wages a class war against the middle class and the planet’s poor. It will take us back to poverty, sickness and, ultimately, serfdom.

Finally, I fear, this competition about power and scarcity will take us into a military WWIII.

One Planet

Planet Earth Photo, courtesy of Wikipedia
Planet Earth Photo, courtesy of Wikipedia

In 1983 I wrote One Planet. It was during the height of the Cold War and addressed the immediate and long term risks that the extremely profitable arms race was creating for Planet Earth and, by extention, Homo sapiens.

Now the risks are multifaceted and include many other threats, such as for example, the chemical and mechanical ruination of our environment for extremely short-sighted corporate goals. The arms race continues apace and the wars of scarcity have begun. Agribusiness and the extraction of fossil fuels and minerals have caused pollution and population displacement to an unprecedented degree.

There are far fewer toe holds available for those of us who continue to grapple for hope, but there is no choice but to “keep the faith.”

One Planet will also be up on the My Songs page.

I’m Not Whining Alone… Oh, Shit! Pete’s gone!

Just to prove that I’m not alone here whining (and singing) in the forest…

Oh shit! Pete’s gone!

On February 2 Michael Enright played the following quote from his 2000 A.D. interview with Pete Seeger – while interviewing Alec Wilkinson about his short (at Pete’s insistence) biography of Pete called The Protest Singer: An Intimate Portrait of Pete Seeger. 

The average person is now gradually  coming to realize that settling problems with guns, bombs and other forms of violence will have to be phased out – quickly or slowly. The bombs have gotten too powerful and war is no longer something that is engaged in by a few professional soldiers. It’s something that wipes out whole countries and civilian populations Continue reading “I’m Not Whining Alone… Oh, Shit! Pete’s gone!”

Fries Or Politics With That?

When an author nails a subtle concept and then distills it into a few sparkling lines, adding humour as a bonus, the moment is magic.

While reading Steven Galloway’s The Cellist of Sarajevo I enjoyed the passage below from pages 82 and 83. Galloway’s book describes life in Sarajevo during the troubles suffered after the fall of the Tito regime in the former Yugoslavia. Sarajevo is in a bowl surrounded by mountains from which snipers and artillery randomly attack its besieged citizens who only walk through the streets if they must – to collect water or perform brave, charitable works in a city whose services and institutions have  broken down. Continue reading “Fries Or Politics With That?”