Progressive Calendar 04.10.14 /3
From: David Shove (shove001umn.edu)
Date: Thu, 10 Apr 2014 14:07:25 -0700 (PDT)
PROGRESSIVE CALENDAR  04.10.14

1. Midstream Reading -  4.10 7:30pm

2. Gary Engler            -.To Save our Planet We Must End Wage
                                   Slavery and Rebuild the Commons
3. Harvey Wasserman - Winning the Green Energy Revolution
4.ed                           - Invisible hand; SubReam Court - haikus &
graffitti

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Midstream Reading Series
When: Thursday April 10, 7:30-8:30pm.    2014
Where: Blue Moon building,  corner of 39th and (3820) East Lake. Upstairs.
Entrance just west of the Blue Moon coffee house; up the stairs and to the
left. Not wheel-chair accessible. Plentiful street parking.
  Best to arrive 10-20 minutes early to get coffee and food/dessert from
the Blue Moon, and to be seated by 7:30 so we can begin on time. And, the
venue will easily hold about 30; after that, standing or floor-sitting room
only. The early bird gets the seat. Please occupy the up-front seats first.
Be an up-front person.

Original poems and stories read/performed by their creators:
Kris Bigalk
Rich Broderick
Rebecca Paradis
Brendan Todt

Kris Bigalk is the author of the poetry collection Repeat the Flesh in
Numbers (NYQ Books, 2012); her work has appeared in The Water~Stone Review,
The Foundling Review, and Revolver, and is forthcoming in The Blue Earth
Review, Paper Nautilus, and the anthology The Liberal Media Made Me Do It.
Bigalk has been twice awarded a Minnesota State Arts Board grant in Poetry
to attend Bread Loaf Writers' Conference and Sewanee Writers' Conference,
and was the Writer-in-Residence at Banfill-Locke Center for the Arts.  She
serves as Director of Creative Writing at Normandale Community College.

Rich Broderick has published a number of collections of poetry and fiction,
received awards, etc., and has had work appear in several anthologies. But
his biggest literary payday came when his poem "The Boxing Lesson" was
chosen for inclusion in the reading comprehension section of the
standardized test packet that will be administered to every high school
student in Massachusetts for the next five years. Following his reading
tonight, Broderick will quiz audience members about what is taking place in
each of the poems he has recited, who is the speaker in each poem, what
passages are metaphor, which are literal, and whether any incidents in the
poems resonate with personal experiences in the listeners' own lives.

Rebecca Paradis. Poet and Spoken Word Artist, Rebecca Paradis has performed
poetry at the Turf Club in St Paul, St Cloud MN, Jerome AZ and Honolulu HI
via ralo Heineman's "Earth Mother Mind Jam" festival. She has also
participated in Maureen Skelly's poetry productions, including "Women and
Water" at the U of M in 2012. Rebecca's poetry has appeared in The Tenth
Muse, Milkweed Chronicle and Minnesota Monthly. Her chapbook is called "The
Cat's Echo"  She will be reading from her work in progress, "Waitress
World."

Brendan Todt's poetry and prose can be found in Ninth Letter, South Dakota
Review, Roanoke Review, NANO Fiction, and elsewhere.  His short fiction has
been featured online as part of the Tin House Flash Friday series and his
poem, "At the Particle Accelerator at Krasnoyarsk," was included in Best
American Nonrequired Reading 2013.  The Idea of Leaves within the Dying
Tree, his chapbook of poetry, was named a finalist in the 2013 New Michigan
Press/Diagram chapbook contest.  He teaches composition at Western Iowa
Tech Community College, which has temporarily stifled his poetry writing
but cultivated his desire to explore the novel.

Before and after: The Blue Moon, downstairs, has coffee, sandwiches,
desserts. Merlin's Rest, a bar/restaurant 3 blocks west, has a full bar,
good food, a late hours kitchen, some outside seating

For further information:
David Shove shove001 [at] umn.edu     651-636-5672


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To Save our Planet We Must End Wage Slavery and Rebuild the Commons
by Gary Engler / April 6th, 2014

Who runs your workplace?

For most of us the answer is a boss, who reports to a higher boss, who
reports to an even higher boss, who reports to a ... all the way up to the
"owner" of the enterprise. This is called a chain of command.

The words "chain" and "command" are both suggestive of a fundamental truth:
Today's rules about the power of bosses and workers evolved from a time of
masters, servants and slaves. While many norms and expectations have
changed over the years the fundamental truth that bosses give orders and
workers are required to obey remains the same.

This explains the use of the term "wage slavery" by some who oppose
capitalism. It suggests that working for wages is similar to being a slave.
The Wikipedia entry on wage slavery offers a good introduction to the
subject, pointing out the concept is much older than capitalism and that
even ancient Romans argued accepting wages for work put one into a
slave-like position. The idea that giving up your free will for any reason
or length of time makes you a slave is as old as wage work itself.

Interestingly, the usage of the term wage slavery has diminished as a
greater and greater proportion of us work for wages. The notion that most
of us are effectively slaves is probably too uncomfortable to contemplate.
And, of course, not talking about this serves the interests of those who
profit from our labour.

But I'd like to suggest there's another reason as well.

As more and more of us work for wages it becomes more and more normal and
we lose the sense of an alternative. I was reminded of this while reading
Peter Linebaugh's stimulating new book Stop, Thief!: The Commons,
Enclosures, and Resistance, a series of 15 essays "written against
enclosure, the process of privatization, closing off, and fencing in."

Contrary to the mythology of a modern, progressive and democratic
capitalism replacing backward feudalism, most ordinary people had more say
in their day-to-day work life before our current economic system came
along. In fact, the rights and privileges of "commoners" (the majority of
people, whose independent livelihood depended on the shared commons) were
destroyed as part of capitalist expansion. To this day, everywhere
capitalism goes the rights and privileges of indigenous people disappear as
the commons are enclosed (become private property) so that rich people can
steal their profits.

When commons were common, through tens of thousands of years, people mostly
developed technology and systems of usage that respected the land, ocean,
river, forest, grassland and creatures that lived there. They did this
because it was in their collective self-interest to do so. This was
reflected in their religions and how their societies were organized,
including the ways people thought of themselves.

Mutual respect, independence, collective responsibility, reciprocity,
community and what we would now call a sense of ecology were encouraged
because all served a society that held its resources in common.

As Linebaugh points out in Stop Thief, 200 years ago poets bemoaned the
loss of these values as well as the ugliness created when capitalism
enclosed the land and resources that people depended on for their
livelihood. Capitalism waged war on the rights, privileges and ideology of
commoners. Enclosure of the rest of the world (colonialism) was the logical
next step. That war has continued ever since, with today's military
interventions, as well as the mass marketing of never-ending consumption
and individualism just the latest in a long line of assaults.

But this is not just interesting history. People who work for wages today
can learn important lessons from those who resisted, and continue to
resist, the enclosure of the commons.

We should learn that:

-- Every enclosure of the commons is an assault on the environment. The
point of capitalism is to exploit nature and other human beings for private
profit.

-- Our strength is always collective; it flows from the commons. As
individuals we are weak and defeated.

-- We must insist that everywhere people work together be transformed into a
commons. The factories, the shops, the distribution systems, all the places
of our employment -- the entire means of production -- are a commons enclosed
by capitalists in order to profit at our expense.

-- To create an environmentally sustainable, healthy, nurturing economy
requires we no longer accept being wage slaves. We must take responsibility
for what we do. We must understand that our world is a commons, not private
property, and begin to act collectively to protect the resources that
belong to all of us.

-- We must re-learn the values of mutual respect, independence, collective
responsibility, reciprocity, community and living in harmony with the
environment that were once the hallmarks of commoners.

During most moments of sudden, great change in human history people have
been motivated by rights that were lost, insisting they be restored.

To accomplish the great change necessary today let us demand that which
requires social labour be recognized for what it is, the common property of
all. Let us rebuild the ways of thinking, the social relations, as well as
the rights and responsibilities that were lost when our commons were
enclosed.

The term that best describes what we would be fighting for is economic
democracy. The commons was always an economic democracy.

The term also helps explain a key flaw in our current so-called democracy --
power flows from control of the economy, which is "owned" by a tiny
minority.

The most successful social movements in the past two centuries have all
pushed for an expansion of democracy. The fight for economic democracy
would be a continuation of these movements.

Let's build an economic democracy to rebuild the commons!

Gary Engler is an elected union officer and co-author of the just released
New Commune-ist Manifesto -- Workers of the World It Really is Time to
Unite, an updating of the original designed to provoke discussion about the
future of unions and the Left. Read other articles by Gary.

This article was posted on Sunday, April 6th, 2014 at 9:12pm and is filed
under Capitalism, Privatization.


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Winning the Green Energy Revolution
by HARVEY WASSERMAN

High above the Bowling Green town dump, a green energy revolution is being
won.

It's being helped along by the legalization of marijuana and its bio-fueled
cousin, industrial hemp.

But it's under extreme attack from the billionaire Koch Brothers, utilities
like First Energy (FE), and a fossil/nuke industry that threatens our
existence on this planet.

Robber Baron resistance to renewable energy has never been more fierce. The
prime reason is that the Solartopian Revolution embodies the ultimate
threat to the corporate utility industry and the hundreds of billions of
dollars it has invested in the obsolete monopolies that define King CONG
(Coal, Oil, Nukes & Gas).

The outcome will depend on YOUR activism, and will determine whether we
survive here at all. Four very large wind turbines in this small Ohio town
are producing clean, cheap electricity that can help save our planet. A
prime reason they exist is that Bowling Green has a municipal-owned
utility. When it came time to go green, the city didn't have to beg some
corporate-owned electric monopoly to do it for them.

In fact, most of northern Ohio is now dominated by FirstEnergy, one of the
most reactionary, anti--green private utilities in the entire US. As owner
of the infamous Davis--Besse reactor near Toledo, FE continually resists
the conversion of our energy economy to renewable sources. Except for the
occasional green window- dressing, First Energy has fought fiercely for
decades to preserve its unsafe reactors while fighting off the steady
progression of renewable generators.

FE's obstinance has been particularly dangerous at Davis--Besse, one of the
world's most profoundly unsafe nukes. To the dismay even of the Nuclear
Regulatory Commission and other notoriously docile agencies, undetected
boric acid ate nearly all the way through a reactor pressure vessel and
threatened a massive melt-down/explosion that could have irradiated the
entire north coast and the Great Lakes. FE's nuke at Perry, east of
Cleveland, was the first in the US to be substantially damaged by an
earthquake.

Both Perry and Davis--Besse are in the stages of advanced decay. Each of
them is being held together by the atomic equivalent of duct tape and
bailing twine. A major accident grows more likely with each hour of
operation.

Small wonder the nuclear industry has been shielded since 1957 by the
Price--Anderson Act, which limits corporate liability in any reactor
disaster to less than $15 billion, a drop in the bucket compared to what
has already happened at Chernobyl and Fukushima, and could happen here.

Should either of those reactors blow, FE and other investors will simply
not have to pay for the loss of your home, family or personal health.
Should that federal insurance be removed, the reactors would shut soon
thereafter since for the last 57 years, no private insurers have stepped
forward to write a policy on these reactors.

As for the wind turbines in Bowling Green, there are no such problems. With
zero federal insurance restrictions, they initially came in ahead of
schedule and under budget. They have boosted the local economy, created
jobs and produced power is that is far cheaper, safer, cleaner and more
reliable than anything coming out of the many nearby trouble-plagued
burners of fossil and nuclear fuels.

Throughout the world similar "miracles" are in progress. According to the
Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, 92 percent of the new electrical
generating capacity installed in the US in the first two months of 2014 was
renewable.

That includes six new wind farms, three geothermal facilities, and 25 new
solar plants. One of those wind installations is a 75 megawatt plant in
Huron County, Wisconsin.

Four solar arrays will produce 73 megawatts for Southern California Edison,
which was just forced by agrassroots upsurge to shut its two huge reactors
at San Onofre, between Los Angeles and San Diego.

SoCalEd and the people of southern California are now in the process of
filling that void with a wide range of renewable installations. Many home
owners will be doing it by installing solar panels on their rooftops, a
rapidly advancing technology that is proving extremely cost--effective
while avoiding production of millions of tons of greenhouse gases and
radioactive waste.

By comparison, according to one report, new development in "fossil fuel
-based infrastructure was almost non-existent for January and February,
with only one natural gas facility brought on line."

Across the nation, public opinion polls show an accelerating embrace of
renewables. According to a Gallup Poll taken last year, more than 70
percent of Americans want more emphasis put on solar and wind power, well
over twice as many as embrace coal (31 percent) and nearly twice as many as
those who support new nukes (37 percent).

And here Wall Street agrees with Main Street. Despite gargantuan federal
subsidies and its status as a legal fiefdom unto itself, major investors
have shunned atomic energy. The smart money is pouring toward Solartopia,
to the tune of billions each year in new invested capital.

There have been the inevitable failures, such as the infamous Solyndra
which left the feds holding more than a half--billion in bad paper.

But such pitfalls have been common throughout the history of energy
start-ups, including all aspects of the fossil/nuke industry. And in
solar's case, Solyndra has been dwarfed by billions in profits from other
green investments.

Ironically, one of the biggest new fields ---advanced bio--fuels ---is
being opened by the legalization of marijuana and its industrial cousin,
hemp. Hemp was the number two cash crop (behind tobacco) grown in the early
American colonies. Both George Washington and Thomas Jefferson were
enthusiastic cultivators. Jefferson wrote passionately about it in his farm
journal, and Washington took pains to import special seed from India.

As a crop with many uses, hemp has been an essential player in human
agriculture for 50 centuries.

In early America, hemp's primary early service was as feedstock for rope
and sails for ships. But it was also used to make clothing and other
textiles. Ben Franklin processed it in his first paper mill. And it has
wide applications as a food crop, especially thanks to the high protein
content of its seeds, which are also a core of the bird feed business.

Some of the early colonies actually required farmers to grow hemp. During
World War II the military commandeered virtually the entire state of Kansas
for it, using it primarily for rope in the Navy.

But since then it has been almost everywhere illegal.

There are many theories behind why, including a belief that the tree -based
paper industry does not want to compete with hemp feedstock, which--- as
Franklin knew--- makes a stronger paper, and can be grown far more cheaply
and sustainably.

China, Japan, Germany, Rumania and other nations have long been growing
hemp with great profit. Canada's annual crop has been valued at nearly
$500,000,000. Estimates of its domestic consumption here in the US run
around $550,000,000, all of it imported.

The US hemp industry is widely regarded as an innocent by-stander in the
insane war against marijuana. (Some believe that because it threatens so
many industrial interests, hemp is actually a CAUSE of marijuana
prohibition).

But because marijuana prohibition seems finally to be on the fade, the laws
against hemp cultivation are falling away. The national farm community is
in strong support, for obvious reasons. Hemp is extremely easy to grow,
does not require pesticides or herbicides (it's a weed!) and has centuries
of profitability to back it up.

When Colorado legalized recreational pot it also opened the door for
industrial hemp, with the first full- on crop now on its way in. Washington
state is following suit. In Kentucky, right -wing Republican Senators Rand
Paul and Mitch McConnell both strongly support legalization. The federal
law against its cultivation in states where it's being legalized has now
eased.

Hemp's role in the Solartopian revolution is certain to be huge. The oil
content in its seeds make it a prime player in the booming bio--fuels
industry. The high cellulosic content of its stems and leaves mean it might
also be fermented into ethanol. (The stalks and stems are also highly
prized as building materials and insulation).

There has been strong resistance to bio--fuels now derived from corn and
soy, for good reason. Those are food crops, and their use for industrial
fuel has pitted hungry people against automobiles and other combustion
technologies, bringing on rising prices for those who can least afford them.

Corn and soy are also extremely inefficient as fuel stocks (corn is far
worse). In a world dominated by corporate agri-business, they are generally
raised unsustainably, with huge quantities of pesticides, herbicides and
petro--based fertilizers. None of those are required for hemp, which is
prolific, sustainable and can be raised in large quantities by independent
non-corporate growers.

Along with on-going breakthroughs in other feedstocks (especially algae)
hemp will be a major player in the Solartopian future. As pot inches its
way toward full legalization, we can reasonably expect to see a revolution
in bio--fuels within a very few years.

Likewise wind and solar. Windmills have been with us for at least five
centuries. Coming from the plains of Asia, they covered our own Great
Plains in the Great Depression and have rapidly advanced in power and
efficiency. Newly installed turbine capacity is far cheaper than nukes and
has recently surpassed all but the dirtiest of fossil fuels. As at Bowling
Green, installation can be quick and efficient. Actual output often exceeds
expectation, as do profits and job-creation.

But the real revolution is coming in photo-voltaics (PV). These
technologies ---and there's a very wide range of them ---convert sunlight
to electricity. Within the next few decades, they will comprise the largest
industry in human history. Every home, office, factory, window, parking
lot, highway, vehicle, machine, device and much more will be covered and/or
embedded with them. There are trillions of dollars to be made.

The speed of their advance is now on par with that of computing capability.
Moore's Law ---which posited (correctly) that computing capacity would
double every two years ---is now a reality in the world of PV. Capacity is
soaring while cost plummets.

It's a complex, demanding and increasingly competitive industry. It can
also be hugely profitable. So there's every technological reason to believe
that in tandem with wind, bio--fuels, geo-thermal, ocean thermal, wave
energy, increased efficiency, conservation and more, the Solartopian
revolution in clean green PV power could completely transform the global
energy industry within the next few years.

"Only flat-earthers and climate-deniers can continue to question the fact
that the age of renewable energy is here now," says Ken Bossong, executive
director of the Sun Day Campaign.

But there's a barrier ---King CONG, the Robber Baron energy corporations.
In fact, the Koch Brothers and their fossil/nuke cohorts are conducting a
vicious nationwide campaign against renewables. It puts out all sorts of
reasons for the bloviators to blurt.

But the real motive is to protect their huge corporate investments.

Because what's really at stake here is the question of who will control the
future of energy ---King CONG, or the human community.

Though it would seem it could also be monopolized, Solartopian energy is by
nature community -based. Photovoltaic cells could be owned by corporations,
and in many cases they are.

But in the long run PV inclines toward DG (distributed generation). The
nature of roof-top collectors is to allow homeowners to own their own
supply. The market might incline them at various stages to buy or lease the
solar cells from a monopoly.

But in real terms, the price of PV is dropping so fast that monopolization
may well become moot. As futurist Jeremy Rifkin puts it more generally his
"Rise of Anti-Capitalism." "The inherent dynamism of competitive markets is
bringing costs so far down that many goods and services are becoming nearly
free, abundant, and no longer subject to market forces. While economists
have always welcomed a reduction in marginal cost, they never anticipated
the possibility of a technological revolution that might bring those costs
to near zero."

But that's what's starting to happen with photovoltaic cells, where fuel is
free and capital costs are dropping low enough that the utility industry
and its fossil/nuke allies can't quite grab control.

When individual building owners can generate their own PV power, when
communities like Bowling Green can own their own windmills, when small
farmers can grow their own hemp-based fuel, who needs King CONG?

We know this powerful beast will fight against the renewable revolution
right down to its last billion, especially now that American elections are
so easily bought and stolen. Defending the green -powered turf will not be
easy.

But sooner or later, if we can survive fracking, the next few Fukushimas
and the oil spills after that, Solartopia must come.

Our economic and our biological survival both depend on it.

See you there!

Harvey Wasserman edits www.nukefree.org and wrote Solartopia!  Our
Green-Powered Earth.


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Wise men ask, What is
the invisible hand the
hand of? Destruction.


SubReam Court

To be courted in the
the SubReam way, just bare it,
bend over, spread 'em

graffitti

Never take a shower
with the SubReam Court

For a good SubReam
call SCOTUS



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