Democratic Forest Trusts (PDF)in Watson, Alan; Dean, Liese; Sproull, Janet, comps. 2006. Science and stewardship to protect and sustain wilderness values: Eighth World Wilderness Congress Symposium; 2005 September 30-October 6; Anchorage, AK.Democratic trusts with leadership elected by citizen-members promise to solve many of the problems afflicting both traditional government and corporate ownership of forestlands.Â This article explores these issues in some depth.Complexity and the Dream of Human Control of Eco-Systems (PDF)in Watson, Alan; Dean, Liese; Sproull, Janet, comps. 2006. Science and stewardship to protect and sustain wilderness values: Eighth World Wilderness Congress Symposium; 2005 September 30-October 6; Anchorage, AK.The title captures it.Â I then explore the kinds of institutions compatible with both nature and the modern world that are implied from this analysis.Rethinking the Obvious: Modernity and Living Respectfully With Nature (PDF)The Trumpeter: Journal of Ecosophy, Winter, 1997.Modernity is usually considered a wrong turn in terms of respect for and sustaining the environment.Â I argue the reality is more complex, for modernity has freed us from personal dependence on agriculture, ended the economic value of children, radically reduced the likelihood of large scale wat, and shifted much production to intellectual rather than material capital.Â This partially decouples society from nature, which gives us important opportunities as well as problems.Towards an Ecocentric Political Economy (PDF)The Trumpeter, Fall, 1996.This paper begins my effort at showing how liberal modernity can be harmonized with an ecocentric perspective on our relationship with the natural world.Â It is a corrective to much “free market environmental” literature that sacrifices Nature to money as well as to anti-liberal attacks by well-meaning but economically naÃ¯ve environmentalists.Unexpected Harmonies: Self-Organization in Liberal Modernity and Ecology (PDF)The Trumpeter, Journal of Ecosophy, 10:1, Winter 1993This is my initial paper exploring how what I term ‘evolutionary liberal’ thought can be an important means by which society and nature can be brought into greater harmony.Â The other Trumpeter papers build on it.Deep Ecology and Liberalism: The Greener Implications of Evolutionary Liberalism (PDF)Review of Politics, Fall, 1996.Liberal thought and deep ecology are usually regarded as mutually exclusive. But the “evolutionary” tradition offers a way to integrate the two through commonalties in the work of David Hume, Michael Polanyi, Arne Naess, and Aldo Leopold, providing a stronger foundation for liberalism while strengthening the case for an ecocentric ethic.(Related subjects: Ecology)Saving Western Towns: A Jeffersonian Green Proposal (PDF)in Writers on the Range, Karl Hess and John Baden, eds., University Press of Colorado, 1998.Developmental pressures in the rural and small town West involve three groups: long term residents, new arrivals, and environmentalists. Today their interests often conflict. This conflict is in part the outcome of institutions which prevent harmonizing competing interests. The concept of developmental trusts, both for rural regions and for small communities offers a means whereby these interests can be harmonized for the benefit of all concerned.(Related subjects: Politics)Social Ecology, Deep Ecology, and Liberalism (PDF)Critical Review, 6: 2-3, 1992.Murray Bookchin is considered a leading radical environmental theorist. However, his analysis is incapable of leading humankind towards a more respectful and sustainable relationship with the natural world. Criticisms of Bookchin from both the deep ecology and evolutionary liberal perspective complement one another, pointing the way towards a better understanding of how modernity relates to the environment.The paper as a whole offers an early discussion of issues that are more clearly addressed in later papers, particularly Deep Ecology and Liberalism (1996) and the three Trumpeter articles in 1997, 1996, and 1993. However, there are other ideas in the article which have not been developed more thoroughly elsewhere.
In the past year there have been many murderous terrorist attacks in the United States, and all have been from the radical right. Jim Adkisson killed two Unitarian church members and wounded others because they were “liberals.” Kieth Luke, a neo-Nazi, conducted a rape and murder spree after Obama was inaugurated. Right winger Richard Poplawski murdered several deputies in a ambush killing. Then Joshua Cartwright, similarly worried that Obama was president and might take away his guns, killed two other deputies in Florida. George Tiller’s murder was only the most recent in a long list of murders by “pro-life” monsters. And I imagine everyone knows the most recent act of right wing terrorism: James Von Brunn’s cold blooded murder of Stephen T. Jones at the Holocaust Memorial Museum.
About the only non-rightwinger involved in terrorism was a Muslim convert Carlos “Corey” Bledsoe, now Abdulhakid Mujahid Mohammed, who allegedly shot and killed Army Pvt. William Long and wounded another soldier outside
a Little Rock, Ark., mall.
Some of us, myself included, have argued that most of this blood also lies on the hands and tongues of men and women like Bill O’Reilly, Rush Limbaugh, Sean Hannity, Glenn Beck, and Michele Malkin. They are the moral monsters who create and constantly reinforce a emotional and intellectual climate where others create bloodshed and terror. But there is a problem here even deeper than murder.
Our identity as a nation is not innate, a fact of nature and biology. Instead our identity as Americans is a cultural construct. Like all cultural constructs, it must continually be recreated through the activities of people who regard themselves as Americans.
More than other nations, our national identity is rooted in ideas incorporated into our Declaration of Independence and Constitution. Unlike most European nations we are not primarily an ethnic group or former tribe. We do not share a history extending back into the distant past. We are a people who came together to make a vision of a free society real. This vision has never been fully realized, and the Dixie explicitly repudiated it before the Civil War, but its promise has remained our strongest source of national unity and hope for the future. As a country, our most important reforms and achievements have been in its name, our greatest failings when we failed to live up to it.
Like termites, the right wing media has been gradually eating away at this moral and intellectual heritage for decades. They have been teaching that other identities are more important than being an American: “Christian,” conservative, white, and so on. In doing so they have constantly taught that Americans who do not meet their tribalistic standards are inferior.
No greater treason is possible than that of undermining the bonds of peace and respect that hold a society together, substituting hatred, distrust, fear, and violence in its place.
The traitors of the right hide their treason against our nation by constantly talking about patriotism – the same way the communists talked about worker self rule while destroying it or Republican politicians praise “bipartisanship” while violating it at every opportunity. By reversing the meaning of words and destroying dialogue they make public debate impossible, and reduce it to yelling and shoving.
I fear we have seen only a taste of their bestiality. Much more will come.