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Action Camp

The Road to Resilience

I’m continuing to take a break from discussing how we become more effective and resilient as a community so as to address the need for all of us (you and me) to rise up to meet the threat of climate change disaster that is actively being locked into place by the shortsighted corporate global agenda.
The list of stupid ideas is long and illustrious:
• We demand a continually growing economy on a finite planet.
• We subsidize the oil and gas industry so they can spend hundreds of millions of dollars searching for more fossil fuels when we already have five times more in reserves than we can burn between now and 2050 if we are to keep global warming at or below 2 degrees C.
• We concentrate the production of goods globally that could be produced locally with minimum transport required; those centralized sources then cause global rather than just local panic if any part of the production process is disrupted.
• Our economy depends on consumers consuming while systematically depriving consumers of the means to consume.
• We have a profit recovery system that eliminates any incentive for long term planning.
• We are driven to replace free, self-regulating services of Nature with expensive, undependable, and possibly dangerous man made replacements, i.e. GMO seeds, artificial fertilizer, distribution of water, disposal of waste. Their natural counterparts, which have an estimated annual value of $26 trillion, are not conserved because our economy places no value on them.
• And on and on.
I avoid depression when I contemplate these things by cultivating the "Monte Python" view of the world; it’s much closer to the way the world really works than I ever imagined.
Again, I want to stress the importance of continuing to become more self reliant and resilient at the local level, but the local economies that should define our future will have no overall economy to operate in if we allow the climate to morph into state that will not support an economy or life as we know it.
If you have ever imagined that there might be a time that you would have to "gird your loins" and actually fight to defend your family, community, nation, world, I want to tell you that that time is now. Not in the next ten years or next year or next month: now! I don’t know about you, but I don’t see that our votes, our donations, or signing petitions have really moved leaders to change course. I’m not saying that we need to commit violence, but I think we do need to leave our homes or workplaces and actually take part in non violent direct action in order to get our governments to put carbon reduction before profit. Again, we can build a strong economy that prioritizes carbon reduction; we just have to decide to do it.
So, how do we create a massive upwelling of demand that our business and government leaders, and the media that reflects their view, can’t avoid responding to? Let’s see; we need a way to organize ourselves into a coordinated national, even international force. We also need to know how, when, and where to most effectively get our point across to those that need to hear it. It just so happens that we need look no further than our own Backbone Campaign. If you are wondering how you yourself can become a cog for change, you are in luck! Experienced activists and organizers from all over the country are coming together right here on Vashon Island between July 31 and Aug. 5 for Backbone’s Localize This! Action Camp. People from all over the country are coming here to participate, but you only have to make a short trip across the island (or maybe next door, depending on where you live). You can find out the schedule and register for one or all days here: When you register, you will receive an email with the location. If you aren’t an internet person, you can call 408 8058. You can also talk to them at their booth this weekend at the Festival.
As we enjoy the Strawberry Festival this weekend, be sure to check out some other booths of organizations that are building community here: Vashon Timebank, community woodworking shop and tool library, Vashon Be Prepared, Vashon Household, the Land Trust, Greentech, Fruit club and many more. Have a great weekend either immersing yourself or steering clear of the whole thing, whatever works for you. But give the Backbone camp some serious consideration.