Tag Archive: United States



Publication Note: This blog article by XiNeutrino was first published in The Urban Times. It is repeated here because of its relevance to current times here in America. Don’t let lifelines go to waste.

It is global. Anger, deep resentful and destructive anger is circling Earth. We are in a turmoil of economic and cultural change that breeds unrest because of weak, indifferent, self-serving politics that ignore their respective electorates. The fiery reaction is totally unproductive and stands to shove us backwards not forward. Muscle, long an enemy of logic, is halting our evolutionary progress. So, what are these lifelines?

Right now we need to soothe and ease our unrest. Normally some of this would occur as we reach out to each other, but our reaching right now is hostile. So, fortunately, we are not the only life form on this planet. Those other lives can and do provide the  release we need, but we must initiate it and be receptive to its intricacies Before I explain, here is a partial litany of lifeline interactions that have personally restored my life many times over..

LITANY OF PERSONAL LIFELINES

  •  My bond with my cougar friends Charlie and Carolion
  •  My dance with a three-legged black bear
  •  My morning meetings with the Reef Squid gang in St. Thomas, USVI
  •  Cautious discussions on family care with an 11 foot momma Alligator with five youngsters  – Cape Romain National Wildlife Refuge
  •  My rescue and release of a wounded Mourning Dove whose relatives visit me in the Spring of  every year.
Yes, the above are personal lifelines and are not listed as directions, but only as examples of the benefits of our reaching across to the life that surrounds us and in doing so restoring our own. The delightful aspect of lifelines is that they are individually arranged and therefore are uniquely each persons own linkage. This is the secret restorative process that renews our perspective and neutralizes our venom toward fellow humans. We find we can become hopeful and constructive again. The future is no longer an ugly, dark and blank wall. As we establish more lifelines, that wall begins to disintegrate and the views through it sparkle with renewed challenges.
IMAGE CREDIT:
Pachyderm lifeline from “Life As A Human” http://tinyurl.com/3xr3mxq
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Not to worry, Googling, or Yahooing or Binging Verdantia yields a variety of “what do you means ” or “what are you talking about” questions and no real answers. Verdantia  is a proposed place-name. It is intended to be generic in its application so that it fits all levels and modes of urban life.
My Verdantia: Before I take us on the road, I offer my experience as a resident of a micro-Verdantia. I live right in the core of an urban environment that borders an historic river and has the support of both city and state services because the area is a state capital. It is lush through Spring and Fall and though stark in Winter it carries promise of coming greenery by virtue of its thick, and regal tree population. This is a population that includes residents that date back over 300 years (Elm and Oak trees). Natural wildlife of a wide variety are both residents and seasonal visitors that serve to animate the reality of my Verdantia.
The residents of this area walk, jog , canoe and bike their way in and around this urban green-space and are obviously both soothed and enriched in the process. No long road trips to get here, for most of us it is a 15o foot walk across a busy thoroughfare to the river’s edge. Here are some quick snapshots of what awaits all of us.
Design and Build or Modify and Upgrade:  Or it could be both. The key consideration is that the urban area begins going green from the inside out. By this, it is meant that the inhabitants are the ones that begin the greening process in their own residences, retail centers and offices. For this to happen property owners, landlords and governmental organizations need to facilitate the greening process. The process in the office, for example, can be as simple as a plant on a desk as depicted on the right, or an entire greenery enclave that includes cubicle office spaces like that shown on the left.  Most importantly this individualized process must have full encouragement by management. This will not be an overnight change and will require considerable adjustment by management to insure that employees feel secure in going green at work.
Design and build is equally important and in major urban areas represents a commitment by local government, developers and realtors to replace aging or condemned structures with designs and construction that are totally green-based. In many cases this calls for matching the structures to an overall plan and pattern for urban greening. This, again, is never an overnight event. It will take political and financial actions to bring about the necessary support by all participants to make it a reality. Citizen commitment to action and long-term support is vital. Transportation concepts and programs must change, including automobile access to city centers. It will be a struggle, and unfortunately some areas both economically and politically avoid struggles.
Its about science too: Ignore Nature and even the best efforts will fail and that could fatally set back the greening concept permanently. Plopping trees and plants in the middle of a intensely busy urban area will do little more than exhibit how plants cannot live outside a supportive environment. The greening process must create that necessary environment and this again is not an overnight event. Financial, political and ecological decisions and actions are absolutely necessary to bring about even one city block of long-lived greenery.
Go or No-Go:  This post has barely touched on all the necessary considerations and steps required to create a green city. Suffering from acute phlegmatosis both the public and its politcal leaders find a variety of excuses to at least stall and in many cases never act on the greeening process. So, how do we embed both the idea and the motivation?
Back to school and the woods: We must build within our children a deep love, respect and desire to protect the environment. From this effort comes the fundamentals that produce a populus that not just supports greening, but demands it. Yes, another non-overnighter. Do we give up because the road ahead is long and sometimes bumpy? Did we give up getting where we are today? Chances are we did not, so the vigor is within us; we just need to activate it. Actions to increase public education on the environment and its protection right now face all kinds of political interpretations and incantations; the results of which are more defeating than encouraging. We, therefore cannot simply pass on to our children responsibility for the greening process. Without legislative support for this kind of educational element, it will not happen. Tired already aren’t you? Exactly and that is the high price we face to make a long, lasting roadway to Verdantia.
Oh, one more thing: While we are working up the steam to begin the push toward Verdantia, we must at the same time insure that what we already have is protected and preserved. The chainsaw gangs are always out there and ready to attack if we are not vigilant and dedicated. Chainsaw by-the-way encompasses all elements of environmental endangerment or destruction. It is not just an emotional scene from Avatar, it is often very subtle and goes unnoticed until all the green is either brown or gone.
Our Native American brethren are those of us who were born with greening an inherent belief and force within them. Nature is kin and as such is worshipped, protected and above all else preserved because it is themselves they are preserving. I, as an infant was infused with this spirit by virtue of being nursed into full life by my Navajo nanny. It is real and the ulitmate reward from all life on this planet. You may click here to enjoy that Native American tribute to all that surrounds us.

IMAGE CREDITS:

Top Image:  Atlanta Garden Design  http://tinyurl.com/3c84upb

My Verdantia: All images by the author, Waddell Robey

Office Greenery: (1) Desk plant – http://www.ehow.com  (2) green enclave: http://www.ecofuture.net

Urban Greenery: http://freegreenliving.blogspot.com/


The hand, as far as the article is concerned, is governance (local, state, national and territorial). The cradle is the entire spectrum of commerce and industry that represents the economy of a community of people, commonly known as a nation. Rocking the cradle, barring some horror movie contexts, represents part of the parental nurturing process of offspring. Offspring within the context of this article represents all those productive elements of a nation’s economy. Those productive elements include all the citizens of that national entity.  Governance is, of course, all the above when we think about democratic societies, and this immediately imposes a web of interactions and reactions that affect management.

Considering the complexity of the above cradle-rocking process, it is no wonder that there is often more than one hand on the cradle and that each hand has fingers in which each finger represents an array of nurture elements. So let’s look at nurture within the context we have created for this article.

Nurturing with respect to parenting involves a host of efforts from early life sustenance to the process of enabling the growth and development of the offspring. This includes behavioral adjustments, physical enrichment, education, and, in many ways, moral integrity. Multiply the offspring by a population mix of citizens, businesses, educational institutions (at all levels), and a host of governmental agencies (also at all levels) and rocking the cradle is no easy task. Most critically, the hands doing the rocking are equally required to have been nurtured to the same rigorous standards. As history has informed us, repeatedly, it does not always come out successfully; quite often in the area of moral integrity.

So what can happen?

The focus must be on the hands and fingers, in other words all aspects of governance, but especially the hands. The hands are the choice of the people who jointly and cooperatively decide exactly which hands are best to help rock the cradle. This is good and has served democratic nations well and successfully until the hands come under the influence of special interests (groups, industries, financial). When this happens the cradle gets jiggled more than rocked and the hands become impaired because they no longer respond to the people. Obviously the fingers, become confused, and often dysfunctional. When all this comes together, the cradle is no longer rocked, much less jiggled. It is abandoned!

Inside the cradle are all the operations and policies that insure a nation is safe, economically strong, progressive and dedicated to the enrichment of all life, including the environment. Obviously, when the cradle is only jiggled or, worse, abandoned the entire nation suffers. This can have dreadful, long-range effects that can retard the nation’s global standing which in turn has serious economic impact. The nation struggles and shrinks, the crippled hands are overpowered by special interests and democracy becomes just a tattered label.

What to do? What to do?

Well here are five steps that can help restore the hands and fingers and repopulate the cradle with all the important policies and practices that will help nurture the nation back into a strong, progressive and democratic country.

  1. Completely revise the electoral process to insure that the people select the hands.

  2. Insure that the fingers are carefully controlled to serve the well-being of the nation and its citizens.

  3. Respect the presence of special interests, but only within the framework of the will of the people. Special interests must gain approval from the people, not the hands.

  4. Governance is a mutual process that involves people, hands, fingers and the cradle. This must be sustained and never allowed to weaken. This means the people need to be alert, committed, and active in support of rocking the cradle.

  5. Progress is non-political. It is the joint activity of all elements of governance that move the nation forward. Rocking the cradle is the summary of that process and represents the continual nurturing of democracy.

Right now, the cradle is nearly empty, the hands twisted and manacled by special interests and the people all have either turned away or turned on each other.  We better hurry before there is no cradle to rock.

IMAGE CREDIT: The Constitutional Convention (Philadelphia) courtesy of faculty.polytechnic.org


The Coralyea Community, above, was founded in 1842 on a small Cay near Cat Island in the Bahamas. Catamara Reef was founded approximately 5,000,000 years ago. It is located in  the chain of islands that make up the West Indies. Like the Coyalyea community, Catamara was formed by living organisms. This is the essential vitality that defines all life above the sea, beneath it, and beyond the boundaries of planet Earth.

Coralyea is fictional and exists as an example for this presentation. The coral reefs of the Caribbean are not fictional. Their sister reef in Australia (the Great Barrier Reef) is the largest living organism on this planet. The key phrase is living organism.

The key to life on Earth and as we now know on any Earth-like extra-solar planet is water. Planetary water is primarily what we call oceans, and it is our ocean that is the essential and vital resource that supports our existence. Simple logic: let that vital resource die and soon thereafter all of its dependents will also expire.

Yep, the “ho-hums” crescendo along with cries of “boring” as we under-react to the decline of life on Earth; better known as species extinction. What we are letting happen to our oceans and the life within them and the lives they support outside is an essential act of self-annihilation. This is absurd. There is too much to live for, there are too many adventures yet experienced, and too little life enrichment yet received to toss it all away.  Please, smirky shrugs will not make any of this go away.

No, no, we are not essentially naughty. We are ill-informed, possibly a bit stupid, and generally indifferent to this critical issue. The deniers tell us it is all out of our hands, sprinkling their shouts with mysticism-based threats. They even pontificate that it is happening to us as punishment. Well it is punishment of all life, but it is BY OUR HANDS! Oh, oh, guilt trip coming! Yes, that is definitely the wrong way to even begin to address life on Earth. Let’s start out by agreeing that, overall, it is absolutely beautiful and wonderful. If we can agree on that, then we are set for the greatest love affair in our lives.

I, personally, was blessed by both being raised my first three years by Navajo Native Americans, and also by living right in the middle of a National Forest. Respect for life, for nature and planet Earth were ingrained in me. The Navajo deep reverence for Earth was imprinted on my daily life. This taught me to be always aware of Mom Nature’s blessings. So, I was lucky, that does not mean the rest of you are unlucky. It has just not been a first order of your early childhood education. Well, it is not too late to acquire that deep awareness and appreciation for our planet, and especially our mother oceans.

Today, opponents to environmental awareness bark warnings about what we could lose or what it could cost us in productivity if we become more in love with dear sweet Earth. They either intentionally ignore or simply do not know about the costs to all life if we continue to ignore this planet and all its marvelous resources. Sure, we take advantage of them daily. The problem is we make no effort to preserve those resources to make sure they remain abundant and available. This is no different than all the things sane, healthy humans do each day for themselves to stay well and alive. What those Navajo’s taught me was that the whole idea was a respect for a community of life that included all things within the environment; including humans. This attitude of worshipful respect ensured that we were blessed by Earth’s beneficence because we carefully nurtured that community of life.

We are at a brink now. Our indifference, even in some cases, our defiance of preserving our community of life now threatens our continued existence. Perhaps the most dangerous argument is the one that espouses the inevitability of our extinction. This is a direct disregard of the amazing process that brought human life onto this planet, and most probably across the Cosmos. In short it is blatant self denial. With this philosophy it is no wonder there is a grab and run attitude about this precious Earth.  Most probably, civilizations on other distant planets (exoplanets, if you wish) have faced these same challenges, and we may eventually find out that many failed and became extinct. So can we, but we also can learn to preserve our community of life and thus eventually meet up with those civilizations that also fell in love with their planetary homes and resources.

In my own mind, I consider my Navajo mentors were really emissaries from some distant planetary culture that had learned to save their communities of life and were now here to help us do the same. We can do it. Do we want to? Do we care? Look below to see the probable outcome if we do not care.

Lastly, if you wish, watch this video which is a Cherokee expression of their respect and love for this sweet Earth. Yes, the Eagle, the Wolf, the Bear, and the Lion as well as the Buffalo are special treasures, but they hold to this day that the entire community of life around them is truly an Amazing Grace.

Shall we agree to defy extinction, or…?

A DEAD COMMUNITY IS A DEAD COMMUNITY IS A……?

Publication Code: 88GMF5BV7HTW


Tinkering, tinkering here and there and everywhere.

Tinkering here, tinkering there, tinkering that’s getting us nowhere. I see this as a rising mantra that evokes our current approach to both a ballooning energy crisis and a blind-mans bluff management of global warming and its attendant climate change.

Encouraged by Wall Street, corporate management in our petroleum industry and our auto industry cannot tear themselves away from the profit well.  This is even though they are fully aware that the well is running dry. This is so uncharacteristic of the real backbone of American industry. I say this because we got here by virtue of the bold, risk-taking entrepreneurs who raised this nation to become a world renown productive giant. That giant, in turn, raised the opportunities and hopes of millions of us.

I had the distinct privilege of working in the aerospace industry in those times. Way before the Apollo 13 crisis, “Failure Is Not an Option” was our hymn of progress. We must, for the sake of all humankind, go there again.

Instead of punishing Big Oil, Congress needs to redirect and inspire them. The inspiration should come in shared investments that are part petro-profit and part from we-the-people though our taxes. Why, on Earth, why? The petroleum industry already has the processing and distribution capabilities and components that would allow it to take hydrogen power and put it in every service station across America. At the same time, we need to resurrect the Lee Iacocca‘s and Henry Fords and inspire them to turn a stumbling auto industry into an eruption of inspired fuel cell designs that keep this nation on the move, and, yes, even in the air and on the seas. Most important of all, we need to start believing that we can do it, and that we want to do it. As dispirited as we are now, we just grab nibbles of escape and pleasure hoping that something will change. Tinkering again, but only this time with the future of humanity.

Taking inspiration from Marshall College’s courageous chant we must start our own that boldly proclaims, “We Are America.” We come to believe it again, and in believing we rise up and turn this current adversity into rousing success. This is the real American way.

IMAGE CREDIT: Tinker image courtesy of “Dvorak Uncensored” http://tinyurl.com/4uqqmoo

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