Have you Heard of Global Warming? | Apparently 60% of Providence Hasn’t | Simple Solutions | Turn off Your Idling Engines

Make America Cool Again

Make America Cool Again

You know that Facebook post in which the kid in the car seat is sobbing about the fact that people are killing animals and causing harm, well I’m feeling that way, except that the emotional devastation is being channelled into anger.

Although I had already heard that various oil companies had known of the dangers of extracting and burning petroleum…it wasn’t until I read this article two days ago
Losing Earth: The Decade We Almost Stopped Climate Change” By Nathaniel Rich
Photographs and Videos by George Steinmetz
….that laid it all out so clearly, that I feel fully incensed.

As I bicycle by idling cars continually and witness the complete disconnect – lack of awareness among the people, I realize that they are completely unaware.

My feeling of exasperation is not going away.

In fact, after talking to a German woman I overhead speaking German today on the sidewalk, walking with her three kids produced clearly through marriage of mixed race, that of course, Germans do not leave their engines idling, they are aware of how their individual and thus collective actions affect the environment.

It occurred to me today that the reason I came here was to encounter this. Coming from the outside and looking in, after having lived in several European cultures in which walking and gathering in public outside of their cars, is extremely more common. Americans are isolationists. They are spoiled. They feel entitled. They seem to be clueless. The technologies (which I use for contact) are pulling them away from an awareness of their connectedness to their immediate present environment. I see students passing by in the neighborhood housing the Ivy League Brown university walking around with heads buried in their cell phones. Incapable of walking without it being in their hand to perpetually be connected to FB or whatever.

This blog is born however from witnessing the exorbitant number of people I pass by sitting in their cars with their engines idling. I’ve asked individuals, have you heard of global warming? 1% respond with recognition. I don’t think that I’m exaggerating.

United States of Addiction, United States of Avoidance

How many times do people reach for their cell phone to avoid eye contact? Inconclusive at this point, but clearly apparent. What about rates of food, drug and alcohol addiction?

With reference to the media or governments’ lack of response, talk about betrayal. The article is long, yet methodically lays out the facts of recognition and then a series of doing nothing, if anything, exacerbating the problem by denying that it exists, discovered over one hundred and fifty years ago.

It was fully understood and undeniably something to act on through diligent awareness, but put aside for business as usual.

US Govts Misleading Public 50 years

US Government administrationss Misleading Public over 50 years regarding the connection between petroleum extraction and burning and subsequent climate catastrophe

in addition to polluting the immediate environment, idling cars and indiscriminate use of plastics are collectively suffocating the planet

This is the letter that I am still attempting to send within the ‘form within the RI governor’s office website’, which doesn’t allow specific characters – like email addresses – to be incorporated in the body of the automated system.

Climate change is real, enforce laws against idling engines to generate income.

This article should be required reading for someone running a US State government office. I have been riding bicycle every day and night for the last 13 weeks throughout the city of Providence, RI. I have discovered that no matter where I go – regardless of age, gender, race, socio economic class (in fact it seems to be more pronounced among middle class professionals), 60% to 80% or more of the population are habitually sitting in their cars with their engines idling. This is not for a quick pickup, but for sustained periods, leaving their engines running. I encounter, regardless of district or neighborhood, a startling number of cars, per block, per minute, with people sitting in their cars, or on top of their cars, or walking away from their vehicles, with their engine left idling. Perpetually running engines. I feel the heat as I cycle by and smell the fumes.

There appears to be a complete unawareness among the population of the fact

1) That global warming exists at all, and is happening all over the planet, today, every minute.
2) And that people in Providence (collectively), indeed affect the air quality of not only other people and animals (if they still exist) in the immediate vicinity of their vehicle as well as what is happening ecologically on other parts of the globe, where warming has already been apparent for the last decade.

What is going on?

• 31 other US states have anti-idling legislation; either statewide or in a particular municipality or county
• The NYC metropolitan area have $2,000 fines per bus if caught idling.
• Citizens in Germany and Scandinavian countries turn off their engines, ALWAYS, some even during red lights. They are completely cognizant of the ecological emergency and climate crisis, with which the United States is perpetually not dealing with, regardless of the fact that we are the primary perpetrators of this crime to humanity and to all other life forms and systems that also inherited the planet.

What are you going to do about it?

It is unconscionable that this is happening and no one is doing anything (except for the scientists and individuals aware who are perhaps silently suffering in the understanding of continued political deadlocks and misinformation due to participating in an economic system based on perpetual growth and profit that has already killed 87% of the other species and will have large swaths of the US turned into a dustbowl and submerge most coastal cities under water.

This is not an economic issue, this is above economics or the Gross Domestic Product.

This is about whether we want to take steps ourselves, together, to do what our federal government has not been able to achieve, and in fact submerges, suppresses and turns a blind eye.

Human actions are creating an inhospitable planet for most other life forms through blind, headlong consumption and a complete disconnection with the natural world and blind faith in advertising and manipulation.

We are destroying the habitats of most life forms on the planet, and simply turning a blind eye. It is your responsibility as a leader, to take measures to impose legislations that will raise the awareness of idling and censure the actions of your populace.




Officially the population of Providence is 179,300. 60 to 70 percent of the people who are in their vehicles, leave their engine on. Let’s say 60% of the inhabitants regularly sit in their vehicles with their engines idling = that’s about 107,500 people.

A fine to cars for idling of $50 x 107,500 residents = $5,375,000. That’s 5 million. Fines to diesel engines – city, state and independent contractors caught idling could be $200 + per vehicle. Fines for cutting down trees, $1,000, for endangering other creatures’ habitats through negligence or pollutants, ranging from $300 per individual to $10,000’s per business.

If nothing else, imposing fines would be a deterrent, and would immediately alert and inform people of their participation in increasing global temperatures and carbon monoxide levels, contributing to the continued increase CO2 levels and global temperatures rising to levels that in 30 years could prohibit human life. If citizens are not informed of this through education or the media outlets, it is your responsibility as a leader to recognize the crisis, and to enforce education and implementation of penalties as deterrents. Ecocide and homicide continues to take place, by ignoring the issue. Fines to coal and petroleum companies, could be in the $100, millions.

India planted 1.5 Million trees in 12 hours, https://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/asia/india-plant-66-million-trees-12-hours-environment-campaign-madhya-pradesh-global-warming-climate-a7820416.html by creating the possibility and enforcing it, certainly in a manner that brought people together to do something that will benefit each.

We could have many simple solutions through seemingly small actions, in steps that could make an enormous difference. Such as;

asking people to turn off their air conditioning units (except for hospitals and care facilities) – 3 days of the week – as a starter.
To attempt car pooling, public transportation, bicycling or walking several days of the week
To authorize penalties to the use of plastics
Create jobs for people to educate people about plastics
To inform people about how their participation in using plastics and idling cars are collectively suffocating the planet in addition to polluting the immediate environment

Measures could be taken globally to do this together as the human race, instead of being in competition with one another in terms of a race to increase the GDP.

With the fines, you could use the money to pay a fleet of bicycle cops to enforce the law and establish a safe bicycle infrastructure in various municipalities and between them as well as money to invest in public transportation.

After approaching people individually, talking to the mayor, sending a letter to the mayor’s office, talking to someone in a state legislative office to convey the message about the need to enact legislation to raise peoples awareness, I find it necessary to contact the governor.

Let’s do this together and make America a global leader in dealing with a crisis that we have alone caused, instead of turning a blind eye.


Rising Tide of Awareness, Great Pacific Garbage Patch, NYC Climate March 2014

Rising Tide of Awareness blogger talking about Great Pacific Garbage Patch at NYC Climate March 2014

“The Lie We Live” | short film by Spencer Cathcart | “Le Mensonge dans lequel nous vivons” | “Die Lüge die wir leben” | “La Mentira En Que Vivimos”

The Lie We Live  short film by Spencer Cathcart

The Lie We Live
short film by Spencer Cathcart


short film by Spencer Cathcart http://theliewelive.blogspot.com


Le mensonge dans lequel nous vivons

Le mensonge dans lequel nous vivons

die lüge die wir leben

The Lie We Live – La Mentira Que Vivimos

Script for the film

In front of you, you have access to more information than any human in history. But you probably don’t care. That curiosity we once had in the world is gone.

Why is it the older we get, the less questions we ask? Throughout history we’ve always accepted whatever world we were born into. And if anyone tried to question our world, they were ridiculed. It’s only years later we look back and ask ourselves: how could anyone accept that world?

Today we call ourselves developed, as if we have nothing left to learn. But in a hundred years, when people look back at our generation, will they too ask themselves: how did anyone accept that world? 

It’s no secret our world is full of problems. We rally, we protest, still the problems only seem to grow. And maybe, because they stem from a much larger problem we fail to see.

Why do we search the universe for new life, when we can’t even coexist with the life on our own planet? It’s as if we expect any life out there to be just like us. As if life can only be human. How is it in a world with millions of species we see ourselves as the only one that thinks, feels, or matters? It’s a reoccurring theme in our history, the belief that some life is inferior to others. We’ve always struggled to accept those unlike ourselves. To recognize because something’s different doesn’t mean it should be treated differently.

When we look at other life, we say our technology makes us more advanced. Yet all we seem to advance is the destruction of the world surrounding us. You look around and there’s little life to be seen. Most animals we know, we’ve only witnessed on screens.

It’s funny how we call them “animals” but ourselves “humans”. As if we’re two different life forms with nothing in common. We see them as beasts and ourselves as people.  Calling their actions barbaric, yet our actions tradition. But while they kill to survive, we kill even as we call ourselves civilized. And we don’t just kill; we raise life to be killed. Not because we need to. Because we like the taste, the look, the feeling. And when you see life as an object of value, it’s hard to see the value in life.

Why is it when some animals are killed it becomes a headline. But when others are murdered, we don’t blink an eye? Why are we enraged at the thought of a culture eating dogs? But laugh when another culture refuses to eat cows?

Our idea of normal may change depending where you are, but our desire to be normal has always been the same. It’s only when the norm changes that we criticize our former ways. Today we live in a nation where it’s normal to get cancer; to become obese; to develop heart disease. Clearly there’s something wrong with this way of life we call normal. But it’s all we’ve ever known.  

For as long as we can remember we’ve eaten animals. Growing up we’re taught meat gives us protein and makes us strong.  Yet so do many foods we don’t need to kill for, but we’re not told that. We hardly hear about the numerous studies showing the diseases associated with meat. Or all the food and land we waste fattening the animals we eat. When you drink the breast milk of another animal your whole life it doesn’t seem odd. It just seems normal. After all, it’s what we’ve always done and we don’t question tradition. We embrace it. But if we never questioned the traditions of our past, we would never evolve.

I’m sick of this politically correct yet morally fucked world. A world where we’re afraid others will be offended by our words, but not that others will be affected by our actions. A world where everybody says they want a solution, but nobody’s willing to admit they’re the problem. The choices we make travel further than we think, but we choose to ignore the impact we have. There was a time I thought we could change. But as I get older I find myself asking, even if we could change, do we want to?

Perhaps this is simply who we are. From the beginning, we’ve been unable to coexist with other life on this planet. And no matter how far we’ve evolved, it’s a theme that lives on. If the story of our planet were a film, up to this point humans would be the villain. And like any great villain, we’ve always refused to see ourselves as the bad guy.

Each generation comes into this world thinking they can make things right, only to be remembered years later for what was wrong. Today we may have more information than any other generation. But what good are answers if we never begin to ask the right questions.

None of us chose to be born into this world. None of us chose who we would be. But all of us have the choice to change what we become.

-Written by Spencer Cathcart

America in Decline: Built Through a Series of “Great Steals” | written by Louie Davis June, 26 1988 for his ElderHostel students |

I was recently introduced to the following paper, written by Louie Davis for his “Elder Hostel” students on June 26th,1988. Elderhostel  – now called “Road Scholars”  http://www.roadscholar.org/ – provides continued ‘travel education’, offering a wide range of subjects and geographical areas. (It could be that these travel educational voyages are a bit similar to the new trend of expeditionary, as opposed to classroom learning https://carolkeiter.wordpress.com/2012/05/17/hitchabout-san-francisco_expeditionary_learning). My parents participated numerous times through the years with courses on various subjects, which they’ve valued greatly. It was pointed out to me how strikingly relevant the content of Davis’s paper is, considering it was written in 1988, because many of the issues are facing all of us currently. Davis writes about the decline of the U.S., and the ways in which America rose to power through a series of “Great Steals”. He wrote about issues which he’d researched thoroughly, providing accurate and frighteningly prescient details. He describes problematic situations which were recognized then, which ironically affect our contemporary population now in 2012, and the various mechanisms people (still use) to avoid dealing with an issue. I believe it would be worth everyone’s time to read this, particularly as a presidential election hovers before us. I have typed his paper word-for-word, with the addition of a comma here and there.

Due to the fact that our American two-party system is buttressed by corporate interests and lobbying groups, with each continually rivaling each other, this system continually obstructs progress and any chance of moving in ‘healthy’ directions. I propose developing a (non-partisan) international panel, to oversee with ‘checks and balances’, programs and operations taking place globally. This would be instituted to hold all nations, and their citizens, accountable for shifting production towards building renewable energy and facilitating jobs which move the world in the direction delineated by Davis at the conclusion of his paper. Ironically, this idea was already created, it’s called the United Nations. However, it has become clear that the UN is by no means an egalitarian organization, equally representing each of the different member countries. Rather, it tilts towards the weight of those countries with more wealth and power. Is a non-partisan, incorruptible panel – not tainted by the pressure of corporate greed – possible? Please let me know.

Louie Davis’s letter June, 26 1988:

Dear ElderHostlers,

I received so many expressions of regret that I did not get to finish what I had to say in that last class about current events and the “Relative” Decline of the U.S., that I thought that I would take a few moments to outline my thoughts on that subject.

I do indeed believe that the nation is going into (already in) a decline, relative or not. The following remarks will indicate why I think that we are going into a decline and why I am pessimistic about our ability to reverse it.

I have sometimes characterized the wealth of our nation as being derived from a number of “Great Steals”.

The first Great Steal was the taking, with near genocidal action, of the land from the Indians. I have however been happy that I was not born south of the Rio Grande where the killing of the native population was so much greater, at least in the early years of Spanish rule.

The second Great Steal was the way in which farming methods developed that rapidly destroyed the productivity of the land. Almost simultaneously with the destruction of the land in the eastern colonies was the stealing of black labor from their homelands in Africa. Of course as one studies the history of farming in the USA, one finds that it was not until the dawning of this century that any thought at all was given to conservation of land, and certainly not forest lands. The people of South America, and elsewhere, who are now engaged in the rapid destruction of the rain forests, have a good example through the actions of their earlier North American neighbors.

When I was a CCC boy in Kansas (’36 to ’39), we were facing the destruction of the “bread basket of the world” by dust storms. We, the CCC boys, planted millions of trees along roads and field boundaries to slow down that destruction by providing wind breaks. Those wind breaks have now been largely cut down and plowed up to provide ever larger fields for ever heavier machinery, as ever larger corporations acquired the land for giant nonoculture farming [According to wikipedia; nonoculture is an ecological environment lacking in biodiversity or foundation species, defined as a bastardization of the word monoculture.]  (P.S. The dust is blowing again).

Right now the great Ogallalah aquifer, in Kansas and Nebraska, is on the way to being pumped dry to provide water to support corn farming, which supports giant beef growing operations. Which incidentally cause massive pollution of the rivers. The game, and point of discussion, in places like the Kansas legislature is how to so control the drilling of additional wells to make sure that those who have already invested large sums in such operations, recover their investment by the time the water runs out and forces the farms back to dryland wheat farming.  

This raping of the land was not confined to farmland. The forests were first burned to provide open land to farm between the Great Plains and the Atlantic. With the expanding population, whole states were clear cut and then fires raged uncontrolled, sweeping over vast areas.

As I mentioned, during the Civil war, skills were developed that provided the know how necessary to organize great operations. Those operations were geared to make money by the fastest possible way. The heads of those operations are commonly called “Robber Barons”.

The U.S. became a nation based on the consumption of raw material. During that time, a practice which haunts us even today in the setting of railroad tariffs, came into being. In order to aid the extractive industries, the cost of shipping raw materials, was (and still is) set lower than the cost of shipping finished materials. Today that practice mitigates against the use of recycled materials. The last time I checked, raw sand for bottle factories could be shipped more cheaply than crushed bottles.

The Third Great Steal is being practiced today on a scale too great for most of us to comprehend even if we wanted to do so. The third great steal is very simple: we are stealing the future of our children and grandchildren. In order to pay for the material things for which we have so much desire, and the military buildup that we are told that we must have, we are finding ourselves in the ultimately destructive position of selling the real estate and securities of the U.S.A. to foreign investors. That which we do not sell immediately, is in a great sense mortgaged.

I have read that one securities house in Japan now holds one third of the debt of the US federal government. (At this point let me urge you to read a fiction story called “The Panic of ’89” by Erdman. It will grab you.) One of the reasons that the U.S.A. is hated by the Central Americans is that they were held in commercial fiefdomship by American companies such as United Fruit. In much the same way, we are already beginning to hate Japan, but we owe our souls to the company (Japanese) store.

One has only to look at the sad state of American manufacturing to note the real effects of our decline. Not only are many countries producing goods cheaper than we are, but they are also producing them better. Even if Japanese cars are produced in the U.S.A., they are perceived to be better built than identical ones bearing American names, built in the same factory, which will sell in the U.S. for higher prices than the identical American named models. In a high tech business, American computer chip manufacturing companies complained that Japanese companies were dumping chips in the U.S. at unreasonably low prices. So an anti-dumping order was promulgated. The prices were trebled and the result was that the American companies could not match the import quality, and right now there is a shortage of those chips on the American market awaiting better American quality.

Much of the blame for such troubles can be laid at the door of American CEO’s. For example, GE got out of many engineering and manufacturing businesses because Jack Welch said “that is not the kind of business I want to be in”. In the process, he laid off 132,000 employees and became a giant financial, insurance and leasing operation. (Perhaps I should note: he laid off 131,999 and me.) During that time GE was paying no federal taxes. Reagan believed lowering taxes on giant corporations would give them resources to generate new products and hire more employees.

It is easy for us to look back and note the destruction of the environment by our forebears. The present destruction that is going on is viewed in a number of ways.

Way 1) It is not happening, at least we must do a few years and a few million (or more) dollars of scientific research to prove that it is going on. The damage to our environment due to acid rain is a case in point. The Reagan administration has steadfastly refused to acknowledge that acid rain is harming our environment. Years ago even when I was in high school, I was taught that the man-made acid in the rain was a recognized destroyer of marble art works and of limestone buildings and structures such as bridges.

Way 2) It is just a theory. For years, scientists have been concerned about the so called “greenhouse effect” that quite likely will destroy the climate as we know it. The problem here, is that we all are the problem and we can not bear to blame ourselves. We cannot blame the problem on a set of robber barons, they merely supply us with the things we want, which either burn fossil fuels or were manufactured by the use of fossil fuels. Scientists are getting more positive with every passing month that we are moving into the opening years of the “greenhouse effect”. I have recently read that, yes indeed, the ocean is starting to rise, the glaciers are receding and the world wide data on temperature indicates that 1987 was a record setter for being a warm earth. Indications are that the decade of the 1980’s may well be the hottest decade on record.

The problem is that the green house effect is the result of the dumping of billions of tons of carbon dioxide into the atmosphere. The varying concentration of carbon dioxide is a much easier thing to measure than the change in temperature of the earth. Of course, there are those who will argue that the case is not yet certain. Perhaps the oceans will suddenly develop a greater capability of absorbing the excess carbon dioxide than it seems to have.

How great a risk do we want to take that our great Midwest will turn into a desert and prime farm land will be pushed north into Canada and the USSR?

Should we be starting NOW to develop sustainable, renewable energy supplies?

Way 3) We think it is happening. A corollary to the green house effect is the loss of the ozone layer. The ozone layer is necessary to absorb the ultra violet light radiated by the sun, before it strikes the surface of the earth. There has been a lot of talk about the danger to humans from skin cancer due to the extra UV in the sun if the ozone layer is badly depleted. There has been little talk of the greater threat to non human forms of life, both plant and animal. How will we screen the UV from the fields of plants that are the primary source of our food? The problem is that we want the things that the CFC’s are used in, such as air conditioners, or to help to make such items as foam food trays at the butcher shop. Since the chlorine in the CFC’s act as catalyst to break down the ozone, the amount of chlorine already in the stratosphere will stay there for many years destroying the ozone. Only time will tell how close to the brink, or how far over the brink we already are.

I hope that the U.S.A. will see the giant problems facing us in the present and near future and once again call upon sufficient organizational skills, finances and engineering genius to stave off the really grim elements of the future and again demonstrate that we are and can be #1.






How can a nation burdened with a backbreaking debt, both public and private, hope to turn the situation around? Being by nature a pessimist, unless I see some reason for hope, I doubt that we can avoid a continual decline into disaster. I am not at all convinced that a nation which prides itself on never responding until a full blown crisis has developed, can make the adjustments to move back into the position of leadership which we have enjoyed. I doubt that we will be able to so change our habits and our lives [in order to] avoid the natural disasters which the U.S.A., with it’s unlimited appetite for an easy good life, always taking the quick way to self gratification has/will help to bring on. I see no indication in the attitude of our voters that we will ever vote in a government that can call a spade a spade and get the unified support of the people.

In closing, I would appreciate rebuttals, additions, comments, praises or condemnations from all who have had the patience to read this through.

-.-.-.–.-.- End to Louie Davis’s letter June, 26 1988 -.-.-.-.-.-.-
Green Machine
Those Who Don’t Learn from History are Destined to Repeat It

350.org attempt to educate people presently, about the need to reduce the number of particles per million of CO2 to 350 million.

Here’s an article that I was just alerted to, regarding tapping into offshore wind turbines to power the East coast. http://usnews.nbcnews.com/_news/2012/09/15/13864179-power-east-coast-via-wind-doable-with-144000-offshore-turbines-study-says “There’s zero fuel costs once they’re in the water,” he said. “Coal and gas are depletable resources, so their cost will inevitably go up over time. The cost of wind energy will remain stable, and the wind resource is infinite.”

United States of Amnesia