Dissent is Not Terrorism! Except in Oklahoma City.

The Great Plains Tar Sands Resistance is doing great work opposing the industrialization of rural Oklahoma and the construction of dangerous pipelines through farm country. As many of you know, I was arrested earlier last year for chaining myself to an excavator. I know it seems like a useless activity, but when I went through my decision process, I decided that the future was worth the personal risk. And however useless it seems to people on the outside, the energy industry seems to be taking it very seriously, judging by their way out of proportion reaction to the most recent escapade of the Great Plains Tar Sands resistors.

During their protest at the new skyscraper headquarters of Devon Energy — our very own Dark Tower that looms over our city lol — a banner was unfurled featuring a “Hunger Games Mockingjay” holding a monkey wrench. The banner was decorated with glitter.

I know, how subversive is glitter, right?

During the demonstration, some of the glitter fell on the floor.

In response, Oklahoma authorities have charged two of the demonstrators with the crime of “terrorism hoax”. Below is the statement of Stefan Warner, who I have known for many years and he is a stand-up guy with love and concern for the planet, its critters, and all people. He is not a terrorist, he is an honest man attempting to speak truth to power. It’s like Oklahoma authorities setting the dogs on the Civil Rights protestors in the 1960s. It seems as though we haven’t changed much.

Devon Energy, on its part, seems well prepared and even excited to play its dominating role in this our very own Hunger Games saga.

We here in Oklahoma have a great need for solidarity actions. If we don’t hang together, we most assuredly will be hung out to dry by the increasingly cruel and merciless social darwinist attitudes of our governor, mayor, many city council people, the state legislature, and etc. who are making a mockery of the rule of law as they subvert the democratic process to take from the people and give to their campaign contributors and special interest supporters.

Oklahoma has a long history of vicious racism, as bad as anything that has gone on further south of us. Events that happen here are not widely publicized elsewhere.

So the great need of the moment is SOLIDARITY!  Solidarity is not just a feel good emotion.  It is action on behalf of others during a time of grave need.  Here are four things everyone can do.  It’s especially important for our leaders to hear from people outside the state.

+ If you’re into prayer. . . Pray for us and those who have been arrested, and for Oklahoma authorities involved with this.

+ Make this injustice visible. Write letters to your local papers. Publish this statement in your blogs, newsletters, on your websites. Tell your friends in other states about this outrageous situation. Tweet! Facebook! Instagram! Pinterest!

+ Write letters to Oklahoma authorities (suggested addresses and names below). Tell them that you are watching what happens with this. Tell them that charging people with the crime of “terrorism hoax” is a terrible over-reaction that speaks very poorly of the commitment of the government of this state to protecting the rights of citizens to dissent and protest. Tell them that branding dissent as terrorism is evil and violates the First Amendment of the Constitution. It is already making Oklahoma the laughing stock of the nation.

Send copies to Great Plains Tar Sands Resistance so we will be encouraged by your solidarity! gptsrmedia@gmail.com  .

In solidarity,

Bob Waldrop Oscar Romero Catholic Worker House

Mayor Mick Cornett
City of Oklahoma City
200 N. Walker
OKC, OK 73102
mayor@okc.gov

Governor Mary Fallin
State Capitol Building
Oklahoma City, Ok 73105

David Prater
Oklahoma County District Attorney
320 Robert S. Kerr, Room 505
Oklahoma City, OK 73102 —-

RELEASE: ANTI-FRACKING ACTIVISTS ARRESTED ON “TERRORISM HOAX” CHARGES RELEASE STATEMENTS. by GPTSR

Please consider sharing this and donating to our legal defense fund! http://gptarsandsresistance.org/donate/

For Immediate Release:

ANTI-FRACKING ACTIVISTS ARRESTED ON “TERRORISM HOAX” CHARGES RELEASE STATEMENTS.
Contact: gptsrmedia@gmail.com

Moriah Stephenson: 405-203-3675 Stefan Warner: 405-863-2888

Oklahoma City, OK: On December 13th of last year, anti-fracking activists with Great Plains Tar Sands Resistance staged a demonstration at the Devon Tower to protest the State of Oklahoma’s subsidizing of irresponsible and dangerous oil and gas extraction and the health effects that Devon’s practices have on communities in Oklahoma and elsewhere.

Four were arrested—two for locking themselves inside a revolving door, and two for hanging a banner inside the (open to the public) atrium of Devon Tower. Moriah Stephenson and Stefan Warner, the two Oklahomans arrested for dropping the banner, were booked in on charges of “disorderly conduct,” “criminal trespass,” and “terrorism hoax”—the latter referring to a small quantity of glitter that fell off the banner.

The escalated charge of “terrorism hoax” carries a maximum sentence of 10 years in prison, and serves to brand activists with the “terrorist” label to delegitimize real concerns for the health and safety of Oklahomans. The charges against Stephenson and Warner are a part of a larger campaign to criminalize dissent—the Canadian-based corporation TransCanada has been meeting with local law enforcement, including the Oklahoma Fusion Center in April of 2013, and encouraging them to pursue terrorism charges for acts of peaceful protest.

From journalist Will Potter: “TransCanada offers police a playbook on how to go after activists. The company suggests prosecuting using criminal trespass, criminal conspiracy, criminal instrument or device (the PVC pipe used for non-violent civil disobedience), grand juries, and “federal/state anti-terrorism statues [sic]. http://www.greenisthenewred.com/blog/transcanada-police-presentation-on-protests/7094/

“My intention on December 13th, in the tradition of Rev. Martin Luther King Junior was to ‘arouse the conscience’ of a state that refuses to provide storm shelters for children at public schools yet has the gall to pay out $645,000,000 in tax subsidies to the oil and gas industry the past three fiscal years,” says Stefan Warner, one of the Oklahoma City residents facing 10 years behind bars on possible “terrorism hoax” charges for a glittery banner.

[See also: http://okpolicy.org/unnecessary-and-unaffordable ]

“I know what the water looks like after a frack site has wreaked its havoc, and I know what cancer looks like after the water has gone bad and the flares stop burning,” said Moriah Stephenson. “At every stage of the fracking process, there’s contamination. 93% of the chemicals used in hydraulic fracturing processes have been proven to damage health, and with the scale of fracking close to Oklahoma communities I’m worried for the health of folks who live nearby.”

[See also: http://www.catskillmountainkeeper.org/our-programs/fracking/whats-wrong-with-fracking-2/health-impacts/ ]

Stefan Warner’s statement can be viewed here: http://bit.ly/1er7TE0

Moriah Stephenson’s statement can be viewed here: http://bit.ly/1ghJrX5

Both Moriah and Stefan are available for comment and are willing to go on camera. Email gptsrmedia@gmail.com for photo requests. ###

Posted in Good and Frugal Government, Climate Instability, Corporation shenanigans, Environmental Sustainability, Health, Oklahoma City, Oklahoma Living, Peak Oil, Safe Community, Social Justice | Tagged , , , , | Leave a comment

A WARNING to the President and Congress of the United States of America, and to the Governor and Legislature of Oklahoma. On the Solemnity of Christ the King, AD 2013.

What do you mean by crushing my people, and grinding down the poor when they look to you? Says the Lord, the God of Hosts. Woe to those who build their houses on wrong, their upper rooms on injustice, who works his neighbors without pay, and gives them no wages.

Lamme

Woe to those who call evil good, and good evil, who change darkness into light, and light into darkness, who change bitter into sweet, and sweet into bitter! Woe to those who are wise in their own sight, and prudent in their own esteem! To those who acquit the guilty for bribes, and deprive the just man of his rights!

Woe to those who enact unjust statutes and who write oppressive decrees, depriving the needy of judgment and robbing my people’s poor of their rights, making widows their plunder, and orphans their prey! What will you do on the day of punishment, when ruin comes from afar? To whom will you flee for help? Where will you leave your wealth, lest it sink beneath the captive or fall beneath the slain

Yes, I know how many are your crimes, how grievous your sins; oppressing the just, accepting bribes, repelling the needy at the gate!

Those who shut their ears to the cry of the poor will themselves also call and not be heard. Injure not the poor because they are poor, nor crush the needy at the gate; for the Lord will defend their cause, and will plunder the lives of those who plunder them. A rich man who oppresses the poor is like a devastating rain that leaves no food. Like a roaring lion or a ravenous bear is a wicked ruler over a poor people.

God hears the cry of the oppressed. He is not deaf to the wail of the orphan, nor to the widow when she pours our her complaint. Do not the tears that stream down her cheek cry out against the one that causes them to fall?

Hear, therefore, kings, and understand; learn, you magistrates of the earth’s expanse! Give ear, you who have power over multitudes and lord it over throngs of peoples!
Because authority was given you by the Lord and sovereignty by the Most High,  who shall probe your works and scrutinize your counsels!

Because, though you were ministers of his kingdom, you did not judge rightly, and did not keep the law, nor walk according to the will of God, Terribly and swiftly he shall come against you, because severe judgment awaits the exalted. For the lowly may be pardoned out of mercy but the mighty shall be mightily put to the test. For the Ruler of all shows no partiality, nor does he fear greatness, Because he himself made the great as well as the small, and provides for all alike; but for those in power a rigorous scrutiny impends.

Then he will say to those on his left, ‘Depart from me, you accursed, into the eternal fire prepared for the devil and his angels. For I was hungry and you gave me no food, I was thirsty and you gave me no drink, a stranger and you gave me no welcome, naked and you gave me no clothing, ill and in prison, and you did not care for me.’ Then they will answer and say, ‘Lord, when did we see you hungry or thirsty or a stranger or naked or ill or in prison, and not minister to your needs?’ He will answer them, ‘Amen, I say to you, what you did not do for one of these least ones, you did not do for me.’

And these will go off to eternal punishment, but the righteous to eternal life.”

Print print these words and mail them to your representatives in Congress and your state legislature.

Scripture references:  Isaiah 3:15, Jeremiah 22:13, Isaiah 5:20-21, Isaiah 10:1, Amos 5:12, Proverbs 21:13, Proverbs 22:22, Proverbs 28:3, 15, Sirach 12:13-15, Wisdom 6:1-6. Matthew 25:41-46.

Posted in Good and Frugal Government, Catholic, Social Justice, War and Peace | Tagged , , , , , | Leave a comment

Another Regulatory “Obamanation”!

President Obama’s Food and Drug Administration is set to deploy another regulatory “Obamanation” if their proposed rules for implementing the Food Safety and Modernization Act are allowed to go into effect.  Below is a press release from the Oklahoma Food Cooperative outlining the issues and the negative impact we expect to experience in our local food systems, as well as instructions on how to protest by filing a comment with the FDA and contacting your congress people.\

Do not delay! Act today! The deadline for comments is November 15, 2013!

Oklahoma Food Cooperative
311 South Klein, Oklahoma City, POB 681, 73101, (405) 605-8088
Serving Oklahoma farmers and cooks for ten years with
the best food that is locally grown for a healthy home.

Press Release – for immediate use, November 4, 2013

For more information, contact Bob Waldrop at 405-200-8155 or bwaldrop1952@att.net. We can arrange media interviews with Oklahoma market gardeners.

Summary: Proposed FDA regulations governing the growing, harvesting, and distribution of fresh produce at farmers markets and food hubs may gravely harm the economic viability of Oklahoma’s small produce farmers.

Responding to food safety problems in the large scale conventional and imported vegetable production systems, the US Congress passed the Food Safety and Modernization Act in 2010. It included the Tester-Hagan Amendment, which protected small farms, farmers markets, and food hubs from compliance with the act, because there is no scientific evidence that small farms are contributing to the nation’s food safety problem. There has never been a USDA food recall in a local food system. Congress also believed that it is unjust to require small farms to comply with rules designed for very big production operations.

Unfortunately, the proposed FDA regulations to implement the act have so many loopholes and complications that it appears the exemption is being deliberately undermined by non-science based regulatory action. This will have grave consequences for Oklahoma’s farmers who produce for direct sale to the local food marketplace. The FDA proposals are inimical to economic freedom and are a classic case of regulatory over-reaction.

Bob Waldrop, President of the Oklahoma Food Cooperative, gave this comment:

“This month the Oklahoma Food Cooperative celebrates its tenth year of connecting Oklahoma families with Oklahoma farmers. We were the first food coop in the United States to focus on locally grown and made food and non-food items. These proposed FDA regulations will hurt our ability to continue in business! Big business can better afford these regulatory costs than small businesses, and it is just that they bear those costs because that is where the food safety problems are found, not at your local market gardener growing and selling at the Oklahoma Food Cooperative. No one has ever produced evidence that the Oklahoma local food community has a food safety problem and they haven’t done that because the evidence doesn’t exist.”

Yesterday the Coop’s Board of Directors adopted a resolution opposing the regulations and encouraging everyone to comment to the FDA and contact their congressional delegation before the November 15, 2013 deadline for comments. A copy of the resolution is attached, which details our concerns about the act. Instructions for commenting online can be found at our website at http://www.oklahomafood.coop/Display.aspx?CN=fsmadetails.

RESOLUTION OF THE BOARD OF DIRECTORS OF THE OKLAHOMA FOOD COOPERATIVE REGARDING FDA REGULATIONS IMPLEMENTING THE FOOD SAFETY AND MODERNIZATION ACT.

WHEREAS the Food and Drug Administration is proposing regulations to implement the Food Safety Modernization Act, and has solicited comments about their proposed regulations, and

WHEREAS there is a general consensus in the local food communities across the nation that the proposed regulations may cause grave problems for food hubs and farmers who grow for direct sale to the public, to wit:

1. Implementation of their regulations, as proposed, will be too expensive for direct to market growers.

2. The Small Farm Exemption, required by the law, as proposed for implementation by the FDA, is too complicated and has too many loopholes that could result in a small farmer being forced out of business by being required by an inspector, who decides, without any due process, to remove the small farm exemption of that grower. Too much latitude is given to local inspectors to revoke the small farm exemption and require compliance which could drive small growers out of business. This regulation is in direct opposition to the spirit and letter of the FSMA which clearly requires the exemption of small growers from these new regulations. The exemption revocation process allows for only minimal due process that does not protect the farmer’s rights.

3. The rules would practically prohibit long standing organic production practices that are critical for sustainable agriculture.

4. The rules require excessive water testing and set unreasonable, non science based standards.

5. The proposed rules discriminate against diversified farms. They treat low risk activities as though they are high risk.

6. The rules lay excessive burdens on small food hubs such as our organization, the Oklahoma Food Cooperative, via a non-science based requirement for an expensive hazard analysis plan and annual monitoring.

THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED by the Board of Directors of the Oklahoma Food Cooperative, that –

1. The Tester Hagan amendment be strictly interpreted so that any farm with less than $500,000 in product sales that are covered by the FSMA are exempt from the provisions of these regulations. We oppose calculating this exemption by adding in the value of the sales of other products, not covered by FSMA rules, to determine the exemption threshold.

2. We oppose application of the preventive controls rules to food hubs with sales of less than one million dollars a year in produce covered by the FSMA rules. We oppose including the value of non FSMA-covered foods and non-food items in determining the exemption threshold.

3. We oppose any regulations that substantially prohibit sustainable agriculture methods or that discriminate against diversified farms.

4. We oppose all of the non-science-based requirements of these regulations and condemn them as attempts to distort the purpose of the law so that it discriminates against and suppresses small farms and protects large agricultural corporations from competition.

5. The President of the Cooperative is authorized to file this comment with the FDA.

Posted in Good and Frugal Government, Corporation shenanigans, Economic Prosperity, Environmental Sustainability, food, Local Food Systems, Oklahoma City, Oklahoma Living, Safe Community, Social Justice | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

Why I’m going to Des Moines to Occupy the World Food Prize.

I am headed out in a few hours by bus to Des Moines, Iowa to Occupy the World Food Prize.

I don’t travel casually any more, so it takes something to get me out of Oklahoma and onto a bus for a 12 hour ride to Des Moines. No, I don’t fly anymore either.  Been there, done that, had enough.  One of the critical things I do to keep my household emissions below the Kyoto Protocol annual allowance is to avoid air travel.  I am not one to tell myself that I am so important that, you know, it’s OK for me to fly because I am a North American of the White Persuasion and thus entitled to burn all the hydrocarbons I please. Bus travel is about as frugal as it gets in terms of both fuel and troublesome emissions into the atmosphere so if I am going outside of a 200 mile or so range, and I can’t get there by bus or train, then I am not going.  If I don’t have time to take the bus, I don’t have time for the trip.

I recommend that everybody follow this same example. Stop telling yourself that you are entitled to all the hydrocarbons you can gulp, because you are not that entitled.

But anyway, enough pious exhortations, let’s get back to Occupying the World Food Prize.

One of the lies the proponents of GMOs say is that we will have to farm with genetically modified crops, because (a) there will be so many people in the future we can only feed them if we can grow franken-foods, and (b) the climate will be so terrible that we will need franken-food plants so they can survive.  Leaving aside the Very Interesting Admission from a group of Very Rich and Powerful CORPORATIONS that the climate future looks GRIM, let us examine the real truth about hunger on this planet.

The primary driver of famine is not an absolute shortage of food, but rather toxic political and economic systems.  The work of Nobel Prize winter Amartya Sen is definitive on this issue.

As the Irish peasants, dependent upon potatoes, starved, the English landlords were exporting grain for cash money. Because their tenants had no money to buy grain, they starved. The British ruling class political and economic aristocracy at the time refused to allocate any money for famine relief.  They didn’t care much for the Irish anyway, and were content to let them starve or emigrate.

Stalin starved the kulaks to get rid of them. The Bengal famine of 1943 was caused by rapidly rising prices for food, driven by British military acquisitions, and aggravated by colonial bureaucracies too stoopid to see what was going on around them. In areas close to the border of Japanese-occupied Burma, the British military seized all transport, including boats and elephants, but then provided no rations for the people who were no longer able to fish or trade for food. Much of the male population was sequestered in labor camps, but their families were left outside to starve.  The wages of urban laborers did not keep up with the inflation, and so it came to pass that 3 million starved to death.

In the Ethiopian famine of 1973, food was moved out of the areas of most extreme hunger because better prices could be found elsewhere.

The government of North Korea follows economic, social, and political policies so toxic that more than a million have starved to death there.

So it goes into the modern world.

The United States subsidizes grain and corn production. This encourages gigantic surpluses. We dump them on the world food market at low prizes. This drives many small farmers in poor countries out of business because they can’t compete. So they migrate to the slums on the outskirts of major third world cities and live with malnutrition and hunger every day.

Here at home, the policy of “get big or get out” has reduced the number of farms, made them bigger, and more reliant than ever on government subsidies to make up for basic economic insanity of our political criminality and economic irrationality.  Rural hunger is as big an issue as urban.

The eyes of many will be on the World Food prize narrative — get big or get out, use GMO seeds, blast your plants with herbicides and pesticides, nature is our enemy, we must make war!  This is a narrative of famine and hunger and world scale disaster.

We will offer a counter narrative of food systems as communities and ecosystems, a human scale project that works with nature with an approach of stewardship and an avoidance of domination.

That’s a necessary message and makes it worth the trip.

 

Posted in Catholic, Climate Instability, food, Local Food Systems | Tagged , , , , | Leave a comment

An open letter to the unknown person(s) who took my rosemary bush.

I hope you really needed and will truly enjoy and appreciate the rosemary arp bush you took from my yard.  It was one of the first plants that I put into the ground here 14 years ago and it was truly a magnificent specimen of the rosemary family.  I assume you must be a person of discriminating taste and that you recognized just how wonderful that plant was and judged that I had had it for too long and now it was your turn to care for it.,

Rosemary arp is not a demanding plant. This one has survived all the tosses and turns of our weather these past 14 years, from frigid ice storms through searing drought  and heat. It freely gave of its branches to flavor the foods of this household — and also of others in the neighborhood.  I love my plants, I am that way.  I wonder about whether you transplanted it correctly so it will continue to flourish or if it died as a result of you doing the wrong thing at the wrong time.

I don’t mind when people pick food from my yards.  That’s partly why I garden. If you need an apple, or an apricot — be my guest.  Do you need some leaves of sage or some sprigs of mint?  How about a branch of rosemary?  I have plenty, except of course for the rosemary, because Now I Have None — and that impacts not only this household, but others in the neighborhood who have shared in the bounty of this beloved plant.

I’m not surprised it’s gone.  It’s not the first plant to completely disappear overnight from my yard.  It won’t be the last. That’s the way things are these days. As such things go  it’s a minor event. But “minor events’ have a way of adding up over time and then they become a cascading series of actions than lead to no good outcomes.

Come the spring, I will find another Rosemary Arp, in fact, I will get two.  I will plant one in the place where this other has grown, but I will plant the other in a more hidden spot, behind my fence and its locked gate, so that if the one in plain view disappears, we will not be deprived of our own homegrown rosemary.

I freely forgive you for what you have done and pray that you will come to understand whatever it is within you that drove you to do this deed.

Posted in food, garden, Local Food Systems, Oklahoma City, Permaculture | Leave a comment

How to get a better government.

The impasse in Washington has everybody talking about the government.  I have yet to hear anyone say anything very complimentary about Congress, even the Republicans, and I know lots of Republicans.

It seems to me that there is bad news and good news.

We have the government we have because we are the people that we are.

If we want a better government, we will need to become better people.

That’s not what we want to hear. We’d like to think that we can change the government without changing our own lives, but that isn’t happening and it won’t happen tomorrow, the next day, or the day thereafter.

Forty years ago this year Robert Ringer published “Winning through Intimidation” and that’s been our mantra ever since.  We put our personal needs, greeds, desires, and purposes ahead of the common good. Our political ideologies and parties are waaaaay more important to us than what’s left of the Republic. We let ourselves be led by the nose astray onto pathways of irrelevance and division. We are not dismayed when the lead story on the evening news, during a time of major national crisis, is about a petty but scandalous crime.

We load up on drugs, sex, shopping, and eating, moving through life in an orgy of consumption and excretion, sort of a grand bulimia of life.  Yee-haw for compensatory and distractive activities!

We demonize people who disagree with us.

It is not surprising that Congress can’t get along.  We the People can’t get along with each other. To expect Congress to somehow be more than what we are is political delusion.

So if you want to do something about Washington, start with the man or the woman in the mirror.  Become a better person and help others to do likewise.  That really is where it starts. Right at your doorstep.

But that isn’t where it stops. No one is an island. We all live in community.  Better people make for better communities because we stop trying to be an island. We stop retreating in selfishness behind closed doors and we don’t put “Not In My Back Yard” signs on our lawns. We work together with our neighbors to increase the safety, security, and quality of life of our families and neighbors. We begin to demand more of leaders and hold them accountable.

In other words, we start moving towards a revolution.

Posted in Good and Frugal Government, Financial Crisis, Safe Community, Social Justice | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

My email today to James Lankford, who was sent to Congress by a minority of the residents of my congressional district.

I heard your message loud and clear today Congressman Lankford.

You told me that you think that it is just fine that when I lose my job, I should not be able to buy health insurance because I have a condition that health insurers don’t want to cover.

You told my friends under the age of 26, that it is just fine for insurance companies to kick them off their parents insurance.

You told my low income friends that your solution to poverty is that the working poor should SUFFER AND DIE when they get sick or hurt.

You told Jesus, who comes to us in the distressing disguise of the poor to SUFFER AND DIE. See Matthew 25 for the details about that.

It is JESUS that you persecute with your enthusiastic embrace of the demonic social darwinist gospel that blames the poor for their own situation.

It is James Lankford who today turned his back on Jesus, and worshiped the false gods of greed, money, and corrupt power.

“Come now, you rich, weep and wail over your impending miseries. Your wealth has rotted away, your clothes have become moth-eaten, your gold and silver have corroded, and that corrosion will be a testimony against you; it will devour your flesh like a fire. You have stored up treasure for the last days. Behold, the wages you withheld from the workers who harvested your fields are crying aloud, and the cries of the harvesters have reached the ears of the Lord of hosts. You have lived on earth in luxury and pleasure; you have fattened your hearts for the day of slaughter.” Epistle of James 5:1-5

The demons who prowl about the world seeking the ruin of souls rejoice that you are their disciple and you do their bidding.

+++++++++++++

Don’t tell me that Republican politicians don’t hate and despise the poor, because I won’t believe you.  I’ve been reading the newspaper and until March of this year watching TV regularly since I was in grade school and that began 50 years ago.  I’ve seen how Republican politicians demonize poor people for their own selfish political gratification.

Where is the Republican plan to deregulate the economy so that poor people could start micro-enterprises that could perhaps in time and with work grow into full time jobs that they own themselves!

Will they allow food sales and flea market sales at all highway rest stops?

Can peddlers set up on public sidewalks and in parks?  Can we have some economic freedom that would benefit the working poor?

Should we maybe stop those monthly helicopter dumps of money from the Federal Reserve that make Wall Street so happy?

WALDROP YOU ARE SUCH A FOOL!!!!!!!!  To even say something like “economic freedom for the working poor” obviously labels you as a filthy disgusting political agitator full of dangerous ideas about the benefits of economic freedom in a society.  Ask any Republican politician, they will tell you — BY THEIR VOTES AND LEGISLATION — that they LOVE our regulated economy just fine.

That’s because it is carefully regulated and fine tuned to benefit their friends.  If just any old group of poor people could set up shop at a freeway rest stop selling hot dogs and lemonade, well, the owner of the Junk Food Franchise down the road might lose some business, and he can be reliably counted on for contributions that support favored politicians.  If he loses business, he doesn’t pay as much so the Republicans can certainly be counted upon to protect his business by suppressing others.

What about three goats in a back yard, milked every day, and the milk sold to neighbors? WRONG!  Can’t do that, we do not want ANY competition with Big Dairy.

And so it goes, on down the line.

I am not a fan of big government programs.  I didn’t vote for our present Tyrant Emperor, and I don’t think I have ever voted for a Democrat for Congress.  If I did, it was sometime in the mists of my antiquity.  But there’s no such thing as economic freedom in health care.  The choice is not “Economic Freedom or Regulated Health Care”.  The choice is whether health care will be regulated to benefit all, for the common good, or whether it will be regulated to restrict access to health care by lower income families, which is the situation the Republicans want to maintain.

And that’s why I am so over the top about the latest Republican insanity.  I am not joking when I talk about “demons who prowl about the world seeking the ruin of souls.”  I mean that literally. Those demons have captured the heart and soul of the Republican caucuses in the House and Senate, as well — as I have already noted — right here at home in the Governor’s office (All Hail Mary Queen of Lynch Mobs Fallin, Dominatrix of Oklahoma) and the Oklahoma Legislature.

Got food storage?  Got super insualtion? Got a way to heat without fossil fuels? Stocked up on wood? Ready to lose your job in the approaching economic apocalypse?

If not, I say everybody best get busy.

Whiskey and car keys and teenagers producer a predictable outcome.  And that’s what we have, in political terms, right now.

 

Democrats are only marginally better.

Posted in Economic Prosperity, Financial Crisis | Tagged | Leave a comment

Getting us into wars.

My grandfather John Cassidy was a man of few words.  I only remember two things from him on the subject of politics.

The first was — “Follow the dollar,” if you want to understand what is happening with government.

The second was — “Democrats always get us into wars.”

John Cassidy was a veteran of World War 1 in France and he was not a man to tell war stories.  When I asked him to, all he said was, “It was pretty terrible.”  And that was it.

I had to concede the point.  World Wars 1 and 2, Korea, Vietnam. . . pretty much encompassed the recurring nightmares of his life.  With his knowledge of World War I, how did he experience WW 2, Korea, and finally Vietnam?

Since then, not to be left far behind in the race towards even more death and misery. . . the Republicans have gleefully taken the lead on war. They can always count on the Democrats  generally sticking to the official program on national security issues.

We’re back full circle to the Democrats on this one.  Without a coherent plan evident to anyone, we are moving directly towards firing high explosive ordinance into a neighborhood of the world stocked everywhere with kegs of gunpowder and fuses just waiting to be lit.

How stupid do you think the world will judge this bi-partisan consensus on the role of war in the life of the United States?

Me, I say it’s time for spiritual warfare, full on, no holds barred, rosaries and novenas and processions with waving signs and banners and icons, ringing bells, incense smoking, and dowsing them with holy water.  Followed right on with multiple random acts of goodness, beauty and kindness.  Also. . . Even more carefully planned and implemented structures that propagate goodness, beauty, and kindness.

Why do we put up with insane structures of mega death on a continental scale?  Maybe we should just start living as though, you know, the Reign of God was an actual daily moment by moment reality here in Oklahoma City and wherever we are.  It’s seems to be a subversive thing to do.  It would be a grand under-mining of the systems of organized stupidity that so often throw up terribly complicated situations where there is no evident good guys but only a proliferation of bad guys.  Maybe then the systems of organized  stupidity won’t work so well because they no longer are what they were.

Demons who prowl about the world seeking the ruin of souls should watch out because we are coming after them to chase them back to the hell from which they came.  BY the way we live our lives. . . by the way we grow communities of purpose. . . Living as if the reign of God is a reality calls for a radical rearranging of personal, economic, and social realities.

It will be worth the effort.  “The fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self control.”

In the meantime, more short term, I pray every moment for all the people of Syria and that whole region of the world, that the fruit of Spirit will be poured out on them.  I want peace to prevail and evil to fail.  If someone can show me something I could actually do, I would do it. Bringing weapons of mass destruction to bear on Syria will solve nothing. It only serves the interests of the terrorists, who will see it as proof of their assertions about the U.S. It will drive them to propagate their own responses of violence, thus escalating the cycle of violence.

It is organized stupidity at work. Runnin amok I should say.

Don’t be quiet, say something about this. Talk to people at work.  Don’t take war for granted. Never give up on peace ever even when the bombs fall.  Make noise.

Posted in Uncategorized | 1 Comment

Oklahoma needs term limits for municipal offices!

With any political office, TWELVE YEARS IS ENOUGH! I don’t care how great some people think that a particular politician may be, TWELVE YEARS IS ENOUGH!

Electoral systems without term limits always become, to a greater or lesser extent, personality cults.  This causes grassroots political activity to wither on the vine.  Why get involved?  Our “savior” is in office!  Our “savior” will do “everything we need”!  There is nothing that I need to do other than vote for “our savior”, whoever that may be.

That attitude will destroy a democracy much more quickly than anything else.

We see this problem in Oklahoma City right now with the personality cult revolving around the mayor.  A great remedy for that would be TERM LIMITS for the Mayor and City Council.

We the People can put this into law by starting an initiative petition.  And this year is the time to do it, since the number of signatures required is a percentage of the vote in the previous City election.  In this particular case, our previous City election had a low turnout, so the signature requirement is low to qualify a city initiative proposal.

Contact me at bob@bobwaldrop.net if you are interested in working on this.   Let’s git ‘er done!

 

Posted in Good and Frugal Government, Campaign News, Oklahoma City | Tagged , | 2 Comments

Responding to the Oklahoman

Last Saturday, the Oklahoman attacked the Great Plaints Tar Sands pipeline protests as “pointless” and included a picture of me chained to an excavator.  I wrote a response, and today, a truncated, poorly edited version of my letter was printed.  The Oklahoman’s standards have really declined under the new ownership. Under the previous ownership, my letters were occasionally edited, but I never had an issue with the editing because it was done for readability purposes.  Indeed, I learned a bit about my writing craft from studying the Oklahoman’s editors take on my letters.  Alas, those days are gone.  Here is what the Oklahoman printed:

Regarding “No point to these protests” (ScissorTales, June 29): An early result of completion of the Keystone pipeline will be an increase in the retail price of gasoline of somewhere between 10 and 25 cents per gallon. Oil companies and their stockholders will rejoice. As the U.S. price for oil rises to meet the world price, however, the rest of us will experience economic disaster. TransCanada’s purpose is to facilitate the ecological devastation of an area of pristine boreal forest the size of Great Britain. Burning the Albertan tar sands will release enough emissions to drive even more extreme weather.

Here is what I actually wrote. It was well within the Oklahoman’s word limit of 225 words:

The editors of the Oklahoman claim that the Great Plains Tar Sands protest actions at Keystone pipeline sites are “pointless.” If that’s so, why has the Oklahoman publicly attacked the protests using such cheap propaganda slurs as are found in your June 29, 2013 editorial? Perhaps the paucity of the  case for the pipeline drives the editorial writers to talk such trash.

An early result of completion of this pipeline will be an increase in the retail price of gasoline of somewhere between ten and twenty-five cents per gallon. Oil companies and their stockholders will rejoice. As the US price for oil rises to meet the world price, however, the rest of us will experience economic disaster.

Trans Canada’s purpose along the Great Plains is to facilitate the ecological devastation of an area of pristine boreal forest the size of Great Britain. Burning the Albertan tar sands will release enough climate forcing emissions to drive even more extreme weather here along the Great Plains.

As to the success or failure of the protests, as a Christian, my concern is to be faithful. So the fact that a notable media organ of the culture of death criticizes my actions as “useless” is nothing at all to me and my house, for we serve the Lord, not the merchants of greed and destruction.

 

Posted in Climate Instability, Corporation shenanigans, Environmental Sustainability, Oklahoma Living, Peak Oil | Tagged , , | Leave a comment