Archive for the Organic Development Category

SCOD Design Methodology 202

Posted in Alternative Architecture, ecovillages, Organic Architecture, SCOD Designs, SCOD Online School, SCOD Thesis, Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , on April 7, 2020 by Drogo

How to Approach SCOD Design (updated 2020)

 

  1. Define linguistic terms for communication

Vocabulary: sustainable, community, cooperative, organic, dwelling, development, alternative architecture, art, science, nature, elements (parts), ecological (environmental), permaculture, homesteading

 

  1. Study statistics and discuss case studies (architecture types and styles): Historical, environmental, industrial (commercial), domestic (private), utilities, public (social), mixed-use, temporary, permanent, etc… [see scod blogs and references]

 

  1. Theory Assumptions: Commercial monopolies (Crony Capitalism) are destroying global eco-systems, contributing to dynamic climate change, and increasing consumerism and planned obsolescence that steals national wealth (socialism for plutocrats), which increases debt poverty and decreases democracy. [see scod philosophy and references sections]

 

  1. Design methods: Basic Needs Diagrams (3 survival, function, form, flow), 5 Elemental Forces Lists (air, fire, water, earth, spirit), Social Narratives (client description details of desires), legal framing (codes), cost estimates, construction procedure, timeline, etc. Develop your own scod design strategies based on case studies and assumptions.

 

5.  Design Images: drawings, models, multi-media

SCOD Design and Imagination

Posted in Cooperative collaboration, dreams, ecovillages, Ethics & Morals, Futurist, Organic Architecture, Psychology, relationships, Sustainability, Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on April 6, 2020 by Drogo

SCOD Design and Imagination – Theory Essay [recording]

Why study SCOD design? Be prepared not only for possible problems by designing better now; but also if there are systemic collapses, having a core homestead village for redesigning a new way of life will be important. People who can afford independent homesteads will have them, but those without enough money need more affordable housing now and in the future.

Some willing and able to share space will be the heart of a scod village, others will be on the fringes as independent owners or temporary visitors; but having communal space for everyone is important for social life, public events, and council meetings. If everyone could afford their own property and everything they need like rich people, then most would do that; but the reality is that currently the way our economy works is that most people cannot earn enough to afford an independent life, and so most people need shared public property but rarely get enough from our federal, state, or local governments.

SCOD focuses more on philosophy and psychology than militant or religious preppers, because the hardest test of conventional friendship or survival during an emergency is living with people. Knowing how to get basic needs met is critical, including during the most likely emergency scenarios (natural disaster, pandemic, or war); so that comes first. Once you know where to get your food, water, and shelter; the scod design method of infinite combinations will be based on access flow diagrams (see ‘SCOD Thesis’ for examples). SCOD does not encourage everyone to collect guns or have the same religion, because freedom and peace are mainly to be encouraged without force. Diversity of martial and work training, with healing arts and cultural beliefs are the core of scod negotiations, and the spices for the flavor of life.

Working and planning with all kinds of people does not need to be permanent. Diverse experience does not need to be a risky investment, it can best be achieved with limited projects with cooperative practice. The purpose of tests and exercises are to determine what works, and what does not for those involved. Dedication and trust are earned over time, and we simply cannot be dedicated to trusting everything in every way. We learn what is reasonable to expect with wisdom by trial and error, and we learn our own limits for negotiations. If there is no reason to invest in an unstable situation, it is wise to move on.   

If the factors work well they will, but there are so many possible scenarios that those who enjoy the joy of design and writing can explore possible plans without the costs of construction. We make do with what we have, and when we need more we can get it with will-power. The factors of design are as important to scod life as the basic elements they are based on, because scod design theory is a religion of architecture in that it should remind us the purpose of possessing, sharing, and maintaining structures and spaces. Exploring scod design theory is possible even if we never find the best possible factors with serious partners, and this point is the power of imagination. We can dream and be creative even if we have serious mental disabilities, physical disabilities, or are in prison or under quarantine. Enjoy yourself, scod.

*

Sharing Success

Posted in Cooperative collaboration, Crafts, Creativity / Imagination, Critical Commentary of Civilization, Ethics & Morals, jobs, Organic Development, relationships, Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on February 21, 2020 by Drogo

SCOD Sharing Culture and Brand Theory

Simply put, most of us cannot depend on financial success anymore, in an economy that is rigged against us more the harder we try. Also sometimes no matter how hard we try at things, we do not always get as good as others; but it is important to do what matters the most to us, even if we are disabled or never the ‘best’. Any success of my work is measured by who shares in the joy with me, because they understand the merits of doing what you love with friends by sharing, not trying to exclude by maximizing solitary ‘ownership’ profit at the cost of others. Those who like me for what I do and who I am will know that any concept of ‘brand’ that I have for myself is dedicated to changing the fake world of corporate representation into real organic cooperative democratic partnerships. I have been repulsed by the term ‘brand’ due to the painfully loaded corporate associations and assumptions that people will ‘buy into brands’ even when the corporate brand only considers them a consumer fan, and not a partner. It is possible that popular ‘brand’ ideology can be reclaimed from being like a cattle logo that is stamped on us, to something that we stitch into our own shared creations.

Organic cooperation is how we filmed our collective movies, how I do collaborative compositions and jam music, and how I produce art and books with other possessive egos involved. Those that want to do their own thing in order to always dominate attention, and have exclusive rights and profit just for their selfish inner circle are not part of what I define as being ‘worthy’ anymore. In previous decades I accepted that people felt forced to be greedy due to the rules; but I have been a part of sharing culture enough now to know that a viable alternative exists to the main-stream. Sure we cannot all get along all the time, and there will be some that we try to avoid; but as population increases compromises and truces built on love become more important to avoid hate and murder. We are all in this metaphysical mess together, whether you play with or against others is a personal choice. We all want to be left alone sometimes down by the creek; there will always be things we do not want to share all the time or in all ways, but relations dominate most of our lives and our proportion of sharing (willing or unwilling) increases with population density. 

One of the most important reasons for increased sharing at the highest levels has to do with top secret ‘national security’ issues that are defended by saying that there are no limits of the tyranny of power when it comes to perpetuating war and terror in the name of defense profit. The military industrial complex used our money and resources to wage war and destroy our global environment. Those in power who do not want to share have done terrible things that they have gotten away with, but it is very important to have more citizen journalists and non-fiction authors strive to share important facts that most of us would never know about.

In conclusion, ‘branding’ has the duality problem of “selling yourself”; selling out your integrity with an artificial facade vs marketing who you ‘really’ are. The more commercial a person is, the harder it is to distinguish the two, because they appear to be a ‘professional product’, not a real human. Most of us can be very competitive for survival, but collaboration is better than competition for sustaining happiness in any community.

In Garden of My Mind

Posted in Organic Gardens, Poems, Poems, Rhymes, Riddles, Spiritual, Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , on January 29, 2020 by Drogo

I did alot of digging and tilling by hand for years.

I also trimmed hedges and trees since i was a boy,

because it was just chore maintenance for our yard.

Then i earned a living working on organic farms; 

until i realized i could not competitively do hard labor anymore; 

and wanted to focus on other jobs like teaching and the military.

I prefer only working with plants on my terms now;

I enjoy nature in between indoor work, without a boss.

I worked so many years on gardens that i did not “own”, 

and then to have my own taken away from me with the sale of our house, 

has made me not want to get attached to gardens anymore.

The ways of working and designing for others only gets me so far.

It has come as a shock to me, to realize how attached I became to wanting

To be the master of my own garden and designs, or else to let it all go.

If i was able to walk out every morning into a garden that was mine for the rest of my life, then i would want to again shape a garden. 

The wilderness is a huge natural garden,

which requires less work to enjoy than a manicured artificial garden.

My efforts now are for the preservation of wild organic nature.

I am focused on protecting Nature for all to use, since i don’t “own” a garden.

I never want to leave the garden in my heart anymore, 

so i live with that state of mind as my goal.

–  Drogo

drogo in g2002

Trumpian Economic Report 2020

Posted in Book Reports, Cartoon Comics, Commercial Corporations, Cooperative collaboration, Crafts, Critical Commentary of Civilization, jobs, Legal / Laws, Multimedia Communication, news, Organic Development, portraits, relationships, Services, Sales or Trade, Society Clubs or Social Groups, Sustainability, Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , on December 31, 2019 by Drogo

Artisan Vs. Commercial Market Selling

By Drogo Empedocles – January 2020

In a Trumpian economy most of us are forced to be beggars even when we offer work in return for money, due to an excess of labor not needed or desired by the rich. Trickle-down Reaganomics has failed us, and is still being pushed on us by Trump and all corporate politicians who sold out. We must resist falling to the attacks causing the destruction of our lives and plan to not just survive but rebuild a better world for our children.

Trump’s tax plan benefits the rich, and diminishes the middle class. The estate tax is gone now so that rich children can inherit all their parent’s wealth freely without earning it, while poor children suffer without deserving it. Personal exemptions have been removed. You can still itemize donations, but the standard deduction bar was raised with an overall .5% tax rate reduction. Those basic changes might negligibly benefit lower incomes, but average to upper middle class households are losing thousands on whole due to other changes in the tax plan.

I lost some financial support despite my working through the holidays on several projects. I won’t be able to do as much free or low-budget work with others, until i can secure more income to cover my own expenses at least. my income is only $700 a year recently, so i feel like i get by with quite a little actually. I only currently use one sound program most weeks, and focus on word (writing) programs, which have glitches between formats, but i am able to publish that way. So for over a year i have only been using two editing programs.

Most people should know that any work has a price; and so my work is for sale, as with any artist; we need means to live so we try to sell prints and originals if we can. If people do not know how to want to share money with others, i am not sure how i can help them except to remind them by bringing it up sometimes. I focus on my work more than sales, because i do it for the work not the sales. If i am asked to be more of a sales person i would not do it. i dont know if stating that i will keep doing my own work the way i want no matter what will reduce interest in investing in me or increase it long term; but i really do not see many options to sustain my career legacy. I may get some temporary side jobs like working for Census, but even if i got a huge increase in income what matters to me is what is created with what i have ultimately.

SCOD social capital has increased overall i believe, which is hard to define since it is not income based. I am close to founding a tristate network for hosting art, music, and writing events; but the design is mostly socially dependent, using properties in WV, MD, and VA. The financial components like ticket sales and payments are totally based on how many people i can get to coordinate together. we currently have several proposals still being formed, for multimedia broadcasting and sharing local events, i can pursue these negotiations without financial losses. ive felt on the verge of something big over the years, but i never know when the tipping point will come because … and this is the hard part to talk about, the complex dynamics of partnerships.

I am proud to ‘beg’ with something of quality to offer in return. When you buy my work, you support many other people; because I collaborate with and buy from other artists and friends. To anyone that thinks I am begging by being honest that I do not earn much, I argue that bragging about how good your work is and saying you have been ‘financially successful’ by taking more than you need is worse than begging because to me that could be considered just as unworthy of support. Getting money from other people is not proof of deserving money, it is simply how people pay their bills. Also I am not just begging because I offer plenty of services and products in various fields. I am simply saying why I could use more income, as opposed to those who do not need more for basic living. I have many jobs, and i do them. I tend to give things away for free and make reasonable deals to work with lower income people.  I apply to better paying jobs, but I do not get them, and when i have had them before i cannot keep them for psychological reasons, one being i cannot stand authoritarian control because i desire to fight back against bosses the same as I would with any willful cruel or ignorant jackass; but when we trade self-respect for money we suppress our resentment which can fester and build to a break-down or illness.

I will not spend time defending myself by arguing against assholes, they are not worth my time. I am too expensive for them because they cannot pay me enough to work for them, and it is easy enough to block them and delete their petty comments. Their attempts to troll me are pathetic when i can shut them down easily. It is amazing that people will ‘friend’ me only to wait for chances to attack, without ever once being kind.  These are the type of people that would tell homeless street musicians to “get a job” too.

If fees are low enough with time i can advertise more without major losses on more websites; in hopes to get at least a few sales. Social reception is usually less than enthusiastic on a whole from audiences on platforms. Amazon is the best example ive had because ive been using it for years, i struggle to get a few sales a year even when i post the links and talk about them etc. I know it is not because my books are not as good as ‘Diary of a Whimpy Kid’ or ‘Captain Underpants’ which are best sellers, it has to do with commercial control of the market at the high levels. I mean sure we could argue whose art or story sucks more, but with enough exposure anti-authoritarian subversive books like ours do well with children and ne’er-do-wellz, which are a large portion of the population.

Ironically most of the people who buy my books are part of the vanishing middle class; not the lowest or the highest earning. There are more lower middle class people so they do buy more books, compared to the few upper middle class people who are interested in my books. I have had people with large incomes talk with me for hours, and i gave them books and they still did not buy any, so spending money has more to do with personalities than wealth; which is why those with less wealth will spend more if they have an income, which creates financial flow and opportunities in an economy.

All of these opinions of observations are reasons why many of us are not satisfied with status-quo commercial politics. We want more leaders like Bernie Sanders and progressives on the right or left who can be held to account by their voters who are also the majority of their campaign financing. We cannot afford allowing corporate sell-outsto further rig our own economy, environment, and country against us.

[ see also Lucas Chancel, World Inequality Lab ]

 

GND Tree Planting Plans

Posted in jobs, Organic Development, Politics, Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , on October 24, 2019 by Drogo

Thousands of forest acres have been lost in most counties nationwide in recent decades. The Green New Deal (GND) will replant trees. Currently in Frederick County there are local groups replanting 55 acres, to replace the 420 lost every year, but it is not enough. Bernie’s GND has several national strategies which would plant more.

1. Adding 20 million new jobs to Public Land Corps, CCC, & ACE

The Public Land Corps (PLC) is a work and education program for young people that is run by the United States land management agencies in association with state conservation and service corps. The objective is the rehabilitation and restoration of public land resources and infrastructure.

American Conservation Experience (ACE) has emerged as a national leader in recruiting, coordinating, and training volunteers to undertake practical environmental restoration projects in America’s national parks, forests, wildlife refuges and other public lands.

The Civilian Conservation Corps (CCC) was a voluntary public work relief program that operated from 1933 to 1942 in the United States for unemployed, unmarried men ages 17–28, as part of FDR’s New Deal. The CCC built heavy engineering projects for National and State parks, often using large stone masonry.

2. Supporting small family farms through RRA. Organic homestead farms have more trees and wildlife per acre than corporate farms because they are more ecological than profit driven, due to self interest and practicality. Small farms are more interested in sustaining communities and wildlife, and large farms are more interested in clearing land for increasing crop production profit, without needing to conserve natural resources for other uses.

3. Adding $40 billion to the CJRF. The Climate Justice Resilience Fund is a grant-making initiative dedicated to helping women, youth, and indigenous peoples create and share their own solutions for resilience. CJRF seeks to foster climate-resilient land management by communities; including agricultural practices, protecting public land and resource rights, and ensuring sustained access to wild foods.

4. Adding $200 billion to the eastern UN GCF. The Green Climate Fund (GCF) is a fund established within the framework of the UN-CCC as an operating entity of the Financial Mechanism to assist developing countries in adaptation and mitigation practices to counter climate change. The GCF is based in Incheon, South Korea. Currently humanitarians and environmentalists warn that the deal is not sufficient in its current scope.

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Pokeberry Plant

Posted in Crafts, Food & Drink, Nature Studies, Organic Gardens, Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , on October 20, 2019 by Drogo

Pokeberry plant leaves are edible when young, but most toxic when mature (like rhubarb). Many people are allergic to the toxins so all parts of the plant are poisonous to them. The roots are the most toxic. The leaves are edible when young after being boiled 3x in water changes, or for those of us not allergic to poke frying in oil or butter is fine. Documented cases are common for people allergic to poke, but there are people like me who have been around poke their whole lives, handled the plants often, and squished the berries for stain and ink without any problems beyond our skin getting stained crimson for a day or two. I have heard of someone getting a skin rash from poke (like poison ivy), as they are allergic to touching it; but I am not. My mother had us paint and print with poke berry ink on water-color paper as children, with no problems.

Poke berries are not edible, but when used with vinegar and salt (and other blends) can make ink for writing pens and printing on paper. Pokeberry ink is not archival because it fades over time on paper, even when not exposed to sunlight everyday. However pokeberry ink is a interesting local organic native alternative to industrial toxic inks, but modern use is still experimental although the chemicals in it are known. In gardens they are beautiful in full maturity, with their ornate ‘goblin’ fruits.

“Indians and early settlers used the root in poultices and certain drugs for skin diseases and rheumatism.” – Michael Owen, ISU

The late 19th century herbal, the ‘King’s American Dispensatory’, describes various folk medical uses that led individuals to ingest pokeberry products. Modern commercial medical companies (big pharma) snubs remedies that are found commonly, for obvious pharmaceutical sales reasons, and so serious testing might be hard to study at length with funding for the purposes of common good, for free but cautious home use.

CAUTION:  Many people are allergic to poke toxins, so limit your exposure to the plant to reduce possible effects. There are many medical claims that eating poke roots, berries, or anything from the adult plant can kill in sufficient quantities.

Other articles: ‘Making Pokeweed Ink‘; ‘Pokeberry Ink‘;

For safer printing for all people, perhaps black-berries or mul-berries or huckle-berries are better? For long-term organic industrial printing, using a weed like poke which is not used for human food would make more sense for sustainability though. [Link Process for making any type of berry ink]

[photo from Wikipedia]

Phytolacca_pokeberries

GREEN NEW DEAL – Our Revolution 2019

Posted in Climate Change, Cooperatives / Communities / Networks / Travels, Economics, Environmentalism, Ethics & Morals, Legal / Laws, news, Organic Development, Politics, Sustainability, Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on August 30, 2019 by Drogo

SCOD Transcript from the Sanders for President 2020 Website

The Green New Deal (GND) concept is public domain and so there are various versions (AOC, Sanders, SCOD) as thesis theories that propose comprehensive plans. This SCOD version is published as part of the Sanders’ ‘Our Revolution’ (evolved from Occupy) movement. Shout out to Standing Rock! [Listen to the Audio Recording of the GND read by Drogo Empedocles]

 

Statement Introduction and Assumptions:

The climate crisis is the single greatest challenge facing our country, The United States of America (USA); and also our single greatest opportunity to build a more sustainable egalitarian future in America, but we must act immediately. Climate change is a global emergency. The Amazon rainforest is burning, and Greenland’s ice shelf is melting. People across the world are already experiencing the deadly consequences of climate change; as extreme weather events like heat waves, wildfires, droughts, floods, and hurricanes have disturbed or destroyed millions of lives in communities, ecosystems, and economies. Poor lower working class and homeless people have borne this burden; many of them were formerly members of the devastated middle class who lost their jobs, families, homes, and property during the Great Recession. The scientific community tells us we have about a decade to transform our energy system away from fossil fuels, towards greater energy efficiency and sustainable renewable energy. We are going to make this planet great again, and healthy and habitable for us, our children, grandchildren, and future generations. Rising temperatures and extreme weather compounded by unrestrained crony corporate political power at the highest levels in government have created health and financial emergencies, causing many Americans to be disabled or commit suicide (see military statistics for soldier suicides and lethal drug epidemics). We must guarantee health care, housing, and a good-paying job to every American, especially to those who have been historically excluded from economic security (aka the basics of modern survival).

The scope of the challenge ahead shares similarities with the crisis faced by President Franklin Delano Roosevelt (FDR) in the 1940s. FDR’s ‘New Deal’ was successful at creating a larger middle class by improving the livelihoods of lower class workers. Battling World War 2 on two fronts, from East to West, the United States came together within 3 years and restructured the entire economy in order to win the war and defeat fascism (corporate government). As president, Bernie Sanders will boldly direct our nationalist patriotic power to embrace the moral imperative of addressing environmental terrorism threats. Environmental threats affect us more than other forms of terrorism due to corporations that create climate change pollution, poison natural resources, and weaponize racism (Coal Mine Wars). Over-population combined with reduction of resources and wealth for the majority of the population has led to support for hateful mass murder (public shootings). Our environment is not just natural, but also social, cultural, economic, and political (artificial). Those artificial aspects of our environment are dependent on people, so we must mobilize millions of people across the country in support of the Green New Deal (The GND depends on us). From the Oval Office to the streets, Bernie will help generate cooperative ‘Our Revolution’ spirit for changing our system (We The People). We can gather sustainable will power together for energy and transportation technology, and economic progress. Bernie Sanders has the courage, the vision, and the record to face down the greed of fossil fuel executives, and the millionaire and billionaire upper classes who have sabotaged environmental action. While being a millionaire now, President Bernie will accept his share of national responsibility (wealth taxes), and welcome the hatred of those among his upper class who refuse to sacrifice to solve crises they helped create. Bernie will lead our country in this Green New Deal movement, and bring the world together to defeat the existing threats of climate change and corporate control. Please join the GND movement with us!

President, Bernie Sanders Will Avert Climate Catastrophe and Create 20 Million Jobs

Main Proposal Plan:

As president, Bernie Sanders will launch the decade of the Green New Deal, a ten-year, nationwide mobilization centered around justice and equity during which climate change will be factored into virtually every area of policy, from immigration to trade to foreign policy and beyond. This plan outlines some of the most significant goals we have set and steps we will take during this mobilization, including (SCOD consolidated bullet points):

  1. Create 100% Renewable Energy – by expanding alternative sources for electricity and transportation by no later than 2030 and complete decarbonization by 2050; consistent with the United Nations (UN) Panel on Climate Change goals; by expanding the existing federal Power Marketing Administrations (PMA) to build new solar, wind, water, and geothermal energy infra-structure.
  1. Create 20 million new green jobs needed to solve the climate crisis. These jobs will be good paying, union jobs with strong benefits and safety standards in steel and auto manufacturing, construction, energy efficiency retrofitting, coding and server farms, and renewable power plants. We will also create millions of jobs in sustainable agriculture, engineering, a reimagined and expanded Civilian Conservation Corp (CCC), fully fund the Land and Water Conservation Corps, and preserve our public lands.
  1. Declare National Emergency for Transition – federal spending to be transferred from creating pollution, to ending pollution. Climate Change and the Great Recession are National Emergencies, so we will invest $16.3 trillion for public mobilization of resources to include more minority communities and democracy in the work-place.
  1. Transition workers from fossil fuels to renewable energy. Workers often are neglected by corporations and politicians. We will guarantee five years of a worker’s current salary, housing assistance, job training, health care, pension support, and priority job placement for any displaced worker, as well as early retirement support for those who need it.
  1. Save families money – weatherizing homes, lowering energy bills, building better public transportation, providing grants and trade-in programs for families and small businesses to purchase high-efficiency electric vehicles, and rebuilding our inefficient and crumbling infrastructure, including deploying universal, affordable high-speed internet.
  1. Supporting small family farms – by investing in ecologically regenerative and sustainable agriculture. This plan will transform our agricultural system to fight climate change with agro-ecology, provide perma-culture local foods, and break the corporate stranglehold on farmers and ranchers. [see Revitalizing Rural America plan (RRA)]
  1. Justice for frontline communities – special help for under-resourced groups, communities of color, Native Americans, people with disabilities, children and the elderly through a $40 billion Climate Justice Resiliency Fund (CJRF); providing those border or fence-line communities a just transition including real jobs, resilient infrastructure, economic development.
  1. Reduce global emissions throughout the world – by providing $200 billion to the Green Climate Fund (GCF), rejoining the Paris Agreement, and reasserting US international leadership in the global fight against climate change.
  1. US emission reductions – The United States has for over a century spewed carbon pollution emissions into the atmosphere in order to gain economic standing in the world. Therefore, we have an outsized obligation to help less industrialized nations meet their targets while improving quality of life. We will reduce domestic emissions by at least 71 percent by 2030 and reduce emissions among less industrialized nations by 36 percent by 2030; the total equivalent of reducing our domestic emissions by 161%.
  1. Massive investments in research and development. We will invest in public research to drastically reduce the cost of energy storage, electric vehicles, and make our plastic more sustainable through advanced chemistry. [see free Community College plan]
  1. This GND plan pays for itself over 15 years. – by Making the fossil fuel industry pay for their pollution, through litigation, fees, and taxes, and eliminating federal fossil fuel subsidies; by Generating revenue from the wholesale of energy produced by the regional Power Marketing Authorities. Revenues will be collected from 2023-2035, and after 2035 electricity will be virtually free, aside from operations and maintenance costs.; by Scaling back military spending on maintaining global oil dependence.; by Collecting new income tax revenue from the 20 million new jobs created by the plan.; by Reduced need for federal and state safety net spending due to the creation of millions of good-paying, unionized jobs – Making the wealthy and large corporations pay their fair share. The cost of inaction is unacceptable. Economists estimate that if we do not take action, we will lose $34.5 trillion in economic activity by the end of the century. And the benefits are enormous:  by taking bold and decisive action, we will save $2.9 trillion over 10 years, $21 trillion over 30 years, and $70.4 trillion over 80 years. Also the ecological value of preserving living green resources should be calculated into our current economy.
  1. Environmental Economy vs Corporate Greed – We cannot accomplish any of these goals without taking on the fossil fuel billionaires whose greed lies at the very heart of the climate crisis. These executives have spent hundreds of millions of dollars protecting their profits at the expense of our future, and they will do whatever it takes to squeeze every last penny out of the Earth. Bernie promises to go further than any other presidential candidate in history to end the fossil fuel industry’s greed, including by making the industry pay for its pollution and prosecuting it for the damage it has caused. Most importantly, we must build an unprecedented grassroots movement that is powerful enough to take them on, and win. Young people, advocates, tribes, cities and states all over this country have already begun this important work, and we will continue to follow their lead. Regional Economic Development – Provide targeted regional economic development. Communities especially in need of assistance during our transition to a clean energy economy will be eligible for an additional funding for economic development investments through regional commissions and authorities. Our federal regional commissions make targeted economic development investments in rural America. These commissions have funded projects that enhance workforce competitiveness, build and repair infrastructure, and increase community capacity like broadband projects, clean drinking water, organic farming, and energy efficiency.

Funding will be distributed Regionally as follows:

  • $2.53 billion for the Appalachian Regional Commission
  • $506.4 million for the Delta Regional Authority
  • $304 million for the Denali Commission
  • $405 million for the Northern Border Regional Commission
  • $94 million for the Southeast Crescent Regional Commission 
  • $2.02 billion for Economic Development Assistance Programs
  • Infrastructure investments for impacted communities. We will provide $130 billion for counties impacted by climate change with funding for water, broadband, and electric grid infrastructure investments.
  • Connect consumers with local farms and healthy foods. Establish a victory lawns and gardens initiative through a $36 billion investment to help urban, rural, and suburban Americans transform their lawns into food-producing or reforested spaces that sequester carbon and save water. Lawns account for 40 million acres in America, and we spend tens of billions of dollars each year taking care of them each year. Let’s reinvest that money in climate smart practices that encourage everyone to be a part of the solution.
  • Invest $14.7 billion in cooperatively owned grocery stores. Local groceries and co-ops are more likely to buy local products, which will help grow markets for farmers to sell their goods. We will also use these funds to bring grocery stores to food deserts ensuring all people have access to healthy, local food. 
  • Incentivize schools to procure locally produced foods. Institutional purchasing can be a huge boost to local producers and build local farm economies. We will give a meal incentive for schools that acquire at least 30 percent of their food from local sources. Invest $31 billion in local food processing, including slaughter and dairy processing. Rampant consolidation in processing has led to a lack of facilities for small-scale, local producers. Investing in local facilities will help smaller producers to compete with the Tyson Foods of the world. Allow meat slaughtered at state inspected facilities to be sold across state lines, to compete with imported meat.

 

* END SCOD Summary of the GND *

Datura: Moon Flowers & Jimson Weed

Posted in Nature Studies, Organic Gardens, Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , on August 3, 2019 by Drogo

Moon-Flower, [Datura Inoxia]; leaves are soft & rounded, with one point.

Jimson Weed [Datura Stramonium]; leaves are spiky, with a few points.

Both types of Datura have spiky seed pods. Folk names: Devil’s Trumpet, Thorn-apple, Hell’s Bells

Datura_stramonium_2Datura_innoxia_moonflower

The 3 most toxic chemical agents (tropane alkaloids) in datura plants seem to be: Atropine, Hyoscyamine and Hyoscine (Scopolamine); which are used in industrial medicines as an Anti-Cholinergic to treat some conditions, but the side effects can be as bad or worse than what they claim to treat, as with most powerful medicines it seems (as commercials are required to list for industrial medicines).

There are many cases of reported poisonings on Public Medication websites; here is a fatal example:

“Fatal poisoning from ingestion of Datura stramonium seeds.

Department of Forensic Medicine and Toxicology, Medical School, University of Ioannina, 45110 Ioannina, Greece.

Citation

Vet Hum Toxicol. 2004 Apr;46(2):81-2.

Abstract

A 19-y old male who intentionally ingested an unknown quantity of Datura stramonium seeds to experience its hallucinogenic effects was found dead. Hyoscyamine and scopolamine were detected in postmortem blood and urine. Blood concentrations of hyoscyamine and scopolamine were 1.1 and 0.2 microg/mL, respectively; in urine only hyoscyamine at 14.2 microg/mL was found. This fatality presents the highest blood concentrations ever reported and confirms that death was due to Datura Stramonium seed ingestion.

These plants are known to contain high concentrations of anticholinergic substances; ingestion can result in anticholinergic intoxication. Signs and symptoms that commonly occur include hallucinations, tachycardia, dilated pupils, and disorientation. In our patient, use of the Naranjo probability scale indicated a possible relationship between the moonflower seed ingestion and the patient’s signs and symptoms.

CONCLUSIONS: Ingestion of the Datura species can result in severe toxicity. Each plant varies in the concentrations of alkaloid substances. For this reason, it is very important for individuals to become educated on the toxicities and potential risks associated with recreational use of these plants.”

 

Wikipedia –

Anticholinergic drugs are used to treat a variety of conditions:

 

Toxicity

Acute anticholinergic syndrome is reversible and subsides once all of the causative agent has been excreted. Reversible Acetylcholinesterase inhibitor agents such as physostigmine can be used as an antidote in life-threatening cases. Wider use is discouraged due to the significant side effects related to cholinergic excess including: seizures, muscle weakness, bradycardia, bronchoconstriction, lacrimation, salivation, bronchorrhea, vomiting, and diarrhea. Even in documented cases of anticholinergic toxicity, seizures have been reported after the rapid administration of physostigmine. Asystole has occurred after physostigmine administration for tricyclic antidepressant overdose, so a conduction delay (QRS > 0.10 second) or suggestion of tricyclic antidepressant ingestion is generally considered a contraindication to physostigmine administration.[17]

Piracetam (and other racetams), α-GPC and choline are known to activate the cholinergic system and alleviate cognitive symptoms caused by extended use of anticholinergic drugs.

Hyoscyamine (also known as daturine) is a naturally occurring tropane alkaloid and plant toxin. It is a secondary metabolite found in certain plants of the family Solanaceae, including henbane (Hyoscyamus niger), mandrake (Mandragora officinarum), angel’s trumpets (Brugmansia spp.), jimsonweed (Datura stramonium), tomato (Solanum lycopersicum) the sorcerers’ tree ( Latua pubiflora ) and deadly nightshade (Atropa belladonna). It is the levorotary isomer of atropine (third of the three major nightshade alkaloids) and thus sometimes known as levo-atropine.

Hyoscyamine is used to provide symptomatic relief of spasms caused by various lower abdominal and bladder disorders including peptic ulcers, irritable bowel syndrome, diverticulitis, pancreatitis, colic, and interstitial cystitis. It has also been used to relieve some heart problems, control some of the symptoms of Parkinson’s disease, as well as for control of abnormal respiratory symptoms and “hyper-mucus secretions” in patients with lung disease.

It is also useful in pain control for neuropathic pain, chronic pain and palliative care – “comfort care” – for those with intractable pain from treatment resistant, untreatable, and incurable diseases. When combined with opioids it increases the level of analgesia (pain relief) obtained. Several mechanisms are thought to contribute to this effect. The closely related drugs atropine and hyoscine and other members of the anticholinergic drug group like cyclobenzaprine, trihexyphenidyl, and orphenadrine are also used for this purpose. When hyoscyamine is used along with opioids or other anti-peristaltic agents, measures to prevent constipation are especially important given the risk of paralytic ileus. Side effects include dry mouth and throat, increased appetite leading to weight gain, eye pain, blurred vision, restlessness, dizziness, arrhythmia, flushing, and faintness. An overdose will cause headache, nausea, vomiting, and central nervous system symptoms including disorientation, hallucinations, euphoria, sexual arousal, short-term memory loss, and possible coma in extreme cases.

Atropine is a medication used to treat certain types of nerve agent and pesticide poisonings as well as some types of slow heart rate and to decrease saliva production during surgery. It is typically given intravenously or by injection into a muscle.Large doses may be required to treat some poisonings. Common side effects include a dry mouth, large pupils, urinary retention, constipation, and a fast heart rate. It should generally not be used in people with angle closure glaucoma. While there is no evidence that its use during pregnancy causes birth defects, it has not been well studied. It is likely safe during breastfeeding. It is an anti-muscarinic (a type of anti-cholinergic) that works by inhibiting the parasympathetic nervous system. It is on the World Health Organization’s List of Essential Medicines, the most effective and safe medicines needed in a health system.

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These night-shades are toxic, but not well understood for medicinal purposes, although the toxic chemical is used in industrial medicine. I have eaten many seeds from both varieties over a few years, and felt no ill effects from them. I stopped trying them years ago because I felt no benefit either. They did not seem to even alter my consciousness as much as coffee or mugwort, after repeated weekly eating of several seeds a day. Obviously people react differently to any organic substances, due to digestive variations and allergies, so this plant is still very mysterious and therefore considered dangerous until substantial studies can be conducted by biologists and chemists. I have no idea why I was immune to moderate doses of seeds, but other people have told me they were affected greatly and it scared them. – Firewalker

SCOD Flora Survey Project

Posted in Nature Studies, Organic Development, Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on July 4, 2019 by Drogo

Volunteer efforts to make a ‘Washington DC Metropolitan Area’ survey map of identified flora species will be documented by SCOD over the course of several years, starting in a few local areas the team can access easily. Frederick and Thurmont are the first areas we are beginning with because of access and pre-existing information by naturalists.

Methodology:  Data Collection (field & archives); Digitizing Process; Database Analysis for Uses (historic land use, planning, locating existing species)

The SCOD Frederick Area Flora Species Mapping project has begun! Node 1a Block 1 of Spiral 1b is surveyed in my notebook. It will take several years to complete the region map, but more than 3 people will be working on it (Drogo, Christine, & Drumwise), and will focus on trees and shrubs estimates, but will include any info donated.

Please contact Drogo Empedocles, Chris Drumwise Ousse, or Christine Maccabee if you are interested in helping or contributing to our project. We are searching for partners to help us with GIS about trees and other plants. Find us on Facebook or leave a comment below. Thanks for your support!

References so far include: Frederick County MD Property Explorer, Arbor Pro USA, Science Direct Procedia, MD Department of Natural Resources, MD Forest Service, Garden Clubs, Nature Clubs, Park Groups, …

Arbor Pro USA – urban forest management for municipalities, universities, and you. 15 years of GPS tree inventories for risks and planning. Team members: Scot, William, Jeff, Ken

Science Direct – Procedia social and behavioral sciences: GIS for benefits and hazards of urban trees.

Tree-Keeper GIS for Frederick, MD – PDF11,158 Calculated Trees; Total Yearly Eco Benefits = $692,169

Frederick City of MD, Park Division Urban Forestry Program – Arborist

Maryland Manual On-Line: Plants & Trees

Frederick County Government, Maryland – GIS / Public Safety

Maryland I-Map – Mapping & GIS Data Portal

Frederick County, MD – Parks & Recreation Locations

Frederick County, MD – Property Explorer

 

Frederick County GIS Data [from email]:

  1.       We have Forest Polygons, they are available here:  https://www.frederickcountymd.gov/5969/Download-GIS-Data

The latest Forest Polygons are from 2017, we have and will update them about every 2-3 years, we started in 2005.

  1.       We have a Forest Canopy layer, made in 2011 by NASA and U of MD.  It is available for everywhere in the State of Maryland, https://www.arcgis.com/home/item.html?id=f70ada30bd29428395186ce5f3a618c5 .  I have a copy of the data if someone needs a copy of the GIS files feel free to send them my way.

 The County Tree Canopy Report can be downloaded by the link below  There are others for example Frederick City and Brunswick available here: https://www.nrs.fs.fed.us/urban/utc/pubs/ .  I also included in the download a map of our Green Infrastructure.  If you have further questions feel free to reply or email me. Download Link:  https://frederick.sharefile.com/d-s13e6f8f52834481a

Mary McCullough – GIS Analyst / Interagency Information Technologies

Frederick County Government Office: 301-600-2324

Website: Frederick County GIS

 *

Evan Keto  – Maryland Licensed Tree Expert #2221, ISA Certified Arborist SO-6594AM, and Owner / Fruitful Trees and Gardens, LLC  240-763-0764

The options are limitless, although resources always are. Personally, I think a handful of people in Frederick could have the greatest impact by plugging data into existing systems, like this map where you can document edible plant species: https://fallingfruit.org/

Even if you only focused on public areas where foraging would be allowed (or at least not prosecuted), documenting all the walnuts, hickories, persimmons, pawpaws, blackberries, serviceberries, etc. would still take quite a long time. But by trimming your plants list, geographical area, and eliminating the technological issues, you could just start creating a very valuable map, and perhaps get other people on social media to volunteer to add to your efforts. In the end you’d have a resource that would help increase environmental, social, and economic sustainability. Just one of many ideas.

A map of trees and shrubs in Frederick or the greater DC area would take dozens of volunteers years to complete. For example, Casey Trees has been working on a map of the trees in DC, and that has taken many volunteers many years, and as they keep it updated, it will never be finished:  https://caseytrees.maps.arcgis.com/apps/webappviewer/index.html?id=932aa4d49bfa45b39ecf3321cbb6cdbc

Eventually, hyper-spectral satellite imaging will be able to tell us what every tree is by its unique light signature. That way, we could instantly identify each tree species for an entire region, but that’s not going to be available for a while: https://link.springer.com/article/10.1186/s40490-018-0123-9

For instance, if you wanted to ask, “What species of trees and shrubs are growing in the DC area?”, that could be more of a list than a map, and can be compiled by cross referencing multiple resources, including – The City of Trees:

https://www.amazon.com/City-Trees-Complete-Washington-Center/dp/0813926882/ref=asc_df_0813926882/?tag=hyprod-20&linkCode=df0&hvadid=312065538926&hvpos=1o1&hvnetw=g&hvrand=4121470300927145656&hvpone=&hvptwo=&hvqmt=&hvdev=c&hvdvcmdl=&hvlocint=&hvlocphy=9007790&hvtargid=pla-493397652405&psc=1

Maryland Champion Tree Listing

http://www.mdbigtrees.com/view_tree.aspx

C&O canal species lists: https://www.nps.gov/choh/learn/nature/plants.htm

 (Monocacy battlefield, National Capital Parks, and other NPS units would also likely have species lists)

Towson Arboretum: https://www.towson.edu/campus/landmarks/glen/trees.html

National Arboretum: https://www.usna.usda.gov/

University of Maryland campus arboretum https://arboretum.umd.edu/

In the end, I think you’ll find hundreds of different species of woody plants, as I learned 200+ and those were just on the UMD campus. If you widen your interest to all plant species, then be prepared to learn to identify thousands and thousands of potential species in this area: https://www.missouribotanicalgarden.org/PlantFinder/PlantFinderProfileResults.aspx?z=7 

Or, if you did want to create a map, you might want to focus on a particular geographic area, such as some of the local parks, and perhaps with focus on the largest and most interesting trees. It might be worth contacting the city’s Sustainability Coordinator and the County Forestry Board, who may already have some items mapped and/or resources to help:

http://www.cityoffrederick.com/891/Sustainability

https://sites.google.com/view/fcfcdb/bigtreeprogram#h.p_vluyI_xWVRDU

Also, you might be interested in seeing the USFS iTree Tools suite, which is all free:

https://www.itreetools.org/

Hope this helps,

Evan

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Frederick County Planning Dept. – Tim Goodfellow (600-2508) spoke with me on the phone and mentioned more contacts:

DNR MD Forest Service, Local Forester at Gambril Park – Mike Kay

DNR MD Wildlife & Heritage Service

Frederick County – Office of Sustainability

Frederick County – OSER (Office of Sustainability) Shannon Moore SMoore@FrederickCountyMD.gov

Tom Rippeon – Arborist, Parks & Recreation, Frederick MD – 301.600.1233; C 240.409.4410

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SCOD Flora Project will be updated here as more data is processed.

To be continued…

Garden City Chapters

Posted in Economics, ecovillages, Futurist, Organic Architecture, Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , on September 25, 2018 by Drogo

Chapter Summaries of ‘Garden Cities of Tomorrow‘ by Ebenezer Howard

  1. Town-Country Magnet
  2. Revenue – Agriculture
  3. Revenue – Town Estates
  4. Revenue – General Expenditures
  5. Revenue – Expenditure Details
  6. Administration
  7. Semi-Municipal Enterprise
  8. Pro-Municipal Work
  9. Some Difficulties Considered
  10. Combination of Proposals
  11. Path Followed Up
  12. Social Cities
  13. Future of London

 

1. Town-Country Magnet

6000 acres, 30,000 people in the city and 2000 in agriculture estates

Central council for creation and maintenance of necessary public works

(Four gentlemen of responsible positions)

Garden City planning: division of acres into 6 radiating sections and rings

Garden City built at center of 6000 acres, but only covers 1000 acres

6 large radiant boulevards (120 ft wide) divide the 6000 acres into 6 pie parts

6 circular avenues: circus and rings of beltways (not including bypass)

Central Park is 5 acres apx. of circle garden and street circus

First Ring is 1 acre public buildings around the city center

Second Ring is 6 garden parks radiating from Central Park

Third Ring is a Crystal Palace for industrial stores and market avenue

Fourth Ring is masonry town-houses and avenue

Fifth Ring is Grand Avenue (inner beltway) with restaurant gardens

Sixth Ring is outer perimeter of industrial factories, near a bypass

Agricultural estates on 5000 acres outside of city

 

2. Revenue of a Garden City – Agricultural and Industrial estates

Entire revenue is from rent and fees, not taxes

Urban rent is higher than rural land

Rent goes from residents and businesses to city government who owns all property

 

3. Revenue of Urban Estates (Town-houses, Restaurants, and Crystal Palace)

How to manage rates with cost of living and inflation

Urban Lot sizes are 20′ x 130′

4. Revenue Expenditures 1 – general observations

Accounting for how revenue supports municipal needs

Enterprises with extreme capital are not needed or desired

Small businesses are promoted in the interest of a functioning population

5. Revenue Expenditures 2 – details

Building construction and city planning: zoning, methods, details

Discussion of how 6 radiant sections and 6 rings function and support each-other

Major component size, cost, and usage.

Importance of cooperation: how to balance against selfish demands due to inter-dependence

Rent Budget goes to public pay, pensions, property maintenance, constructions

 

6. Administration: who governs what?

Most of us are both Individualists and Communists: we believe in freedom and community

Public and Private issues; temperance

Democratic politics and representation vs Bureaucratic appointments without elections

7. Local Business

Public markets are owned by the City

Retail Business is limited to the Crystal Palace with local options

Introduce tenants, prevent waste and pollution, fair competition to avoid monopolies

8. Municipal Work – pro-public service

Philanthropic charitable institutions, religious societies, and educational agencies.

Work placement office.

 

9. Difficulties of Nature and Humans

Challenges of nature, human nature, and artificial constructs will always exist.

Nothing is perfect in reality, we just do the best we can.

Better society is worth our efforts, although perfection is impossible.

  •  Chapter summaries to be continued later

 

32,000 people in medium Garden City population (58,000 larger Central City)

Rail lines and other public transportation need to connect workers to work places, and products to warehouses and shops. Distribution and traffic flow is critical for city function.

Link to original article on Garden Cities:  Garden Cities by E. Howard

*

Garden City of Letchworth, England

Report by Drogo 1999 @ SCAD, Georgia USA. Ebenezer Howard’s first version of his book was published in 1898 , under the title ‘Tomorrow: A Peaceful Path to Real Reform’, and was revised in 1902. The version studied was ‘Garden Cities of To-morrow‘, published by M.I.T. press in 1965 (67 years after it was first written). The preface by J.H. Osburn and a commentary by Lewis Mumford called ‘The Garden Idea and Modern Planning’, were both written in 1945.

(to be continued)

Drogo’s additional notes:  I was contacted by Raphael Guena and told about his article on “two french architects who built 2 garden-cities near Paris a century ago. They are called Eugène Gonnot and Georges Albenque.”

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Arboritecture – Tree Architecture

Posted in Alternative Architecture, Crafts, Futurist, inventions, Nature Studies, Organic Agriculture & Horticulture, Sculpture, Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , on October 28, 2017 by Drogo

SCOD Tree Architecture – Arboritecture, a subset of Hortitecture

Trees could revolutionize our way of living, if we returned to living in and around them more. Conventional architecture is terrible at doing so, and is designed in opposition to trees, because vegetation touching dead building materials tend to make them rot. It is possible to live with an awareness of various levels of growth and decay, but it would require a culture more integrated with the natural environment.

Imagine devices that used living energy from photosynthesis. Design Science should explore the relationship of natural-artificial hybrids, methodologies of integrating plant matter into building fabric, issues of maintenance and sustainability, and ecological biological and organic architectural materials for environmental design.

20171028_134106

 

 

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Urban vs Rural Living Differences

Posted in Organic Development, Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , on September 3, 2017 by Drogo

Living in an Urban City is different than living in the Rural Country, in a few ways. Civilization and Wilderness both have advantages and disadvantages when contrasted with each-other (pros and cons). People that love cities tend to focus on night-life, restaurants, and dependence on technology. People that love the country tend to focus on tranquility, nature, and independence from artifice. Fans of both often talk about their flow within the setting, and desired emotions evoked.

Associated Generalizations of

Urban / Rural

expensive / affordable

artificial / natural

utilities / agriculture

technology and shows / plants and animals

crowded crazy people / isolated crazy people

congested & stressed / relaxed & lazy

sidewalks / no sidewalks

complex / simple

no stars / stars

loud / quiet

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Urban + Rural = Suburban Sprawl – Wilderness

One of the major planning issues has become Suburban Sprawl. Frank Lloyd Wright was one of the first American architects to address the problem of sprawl in his Broadacre City design. Broadacre city was a modern blend of libertarian and futurist urban, industrial, and agricultural aspects important for civic functions.

(add SCOD thesis essays on sprawl)

 

 

 

 

Why Would an Artist Architect write a book on Economics & Politics??

Posted in Alternative Architecture, Economics, Environmentalism, Organic Development, Philosophy, Politics, Sustainability, Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , on May 15, 2017 by Drogo

Wealth inequality is on the rise.

What does that mean for regular people?

Rising wealth inequality nationally means the rich are getting richer, more drastically than before; and the poor are getting poorer, which means they will soon have the rights of displaced Native Americans from 100 years ago. Imagine how that might affect minorities like many blacks and natives who already have the poverty of third-world countries, but are required to pay the fees of first-world plutocrats and corporate cronies?

Most of us are still feeling the Great Recession in our daily lives. The national economic ‘growth’ data that popular economists use, shows that after the corporate bail-outs sectors of our economy grew. Can you guess what percentage of the population benefited from that growth? About 1%.

Many of us middle-class people are losing our wealth when we try to sell our homes because of banker-real-estate fraud on the buyer’s behalf, devaluing old homes in areas of slow growth and using tax money to build new developments which makes a few rich while we get poorer without as many jobs, because money has been drained from the middle to go to the top.

I remember when I first noticed corporate take-over locally in the 1990’s when Walmarts began ‘out-competing’ all the mom-and-pop small family owned stores, and almost monopolized the market even for large franchise chains. Cable-companies made fortunes stringing wires around the country, into rural areas, competing with ‘WV state-flowers’ and antenna TV. Larger companies replaced smaller ones, every-where.

It is time to change the system, but it is not all or nothing. There are elements of alternative systems every-where in history, and around us in America today. If we do not have a right to live, our leaders do not have a right to rule, because they enforce the laws that make us unable to provide for ourselves, laws which we need to take responsibility to change.

Power for the people, and by the people is a constant struggle. ‘Power to the people’! We have to take the power back, from the plutocrats. Economics and politics are combined in America as a corrupt form of crony ‘State Capitalism’. No conspiracy or theory is needed to explain the reality of how corporations function, it is notoriously blatant and commonly accepted as ‘just the way things are’; so without defining every popular economic term that Madoff and Greenspan advocated, I will try to high-light the problems that affect most of us and propose solutions.

“People Power!!!” – AMM (Appalachian Mountain Militia)

I do not expect people to take my word as total truth. I want average people to get interested in how our system works, by helping them to feel that they can make a difference simply by beginning to question the establishment in intelligent ways. I am not a professional economist, I am studying finance as a hobby. For this book I am able to put forth theories by other economists, scientists, and philosophers; by rewording or quoting them. There are millions of people that disagree with my opinions, and I will not include all the information that a basic or advanced economic book would; but I will do my best to interpret and phrase jargon with references as best I can.

I designed and published SCOD Thesis in 1999 to address alternative ways to live. I was mocked by some students and professors for wanting to build a ‘commune’. It was considered absurd to be interested in village design that was not able to be financed by rich clients or the government, for ‘profit’.

I accepted the responsibility that I was a radical rebel, and system out-cast in college when I began to learn more about adult subjects, and got a clearer impression how the business world worked. My experience as a college graduate trying to ‘earn a living’ by selling myself to anyone willing to pay me, was even more discouraging and depressing.

As a drafting assistant, design partner, professor of architecture, and architectural adviser I was so in debt that any money I made had to go directly to pay debt bills, and did not allow me to save for the basics of middle-class property and personal benefit expectations that were promised to come to everyone that played by the rules of the system (higher education = more income). I found those platitudes to be hollow, even for many like me who wanted to find a life-long career within ‘good’ firms. Well it was clear the world for practicing architects was changing from what it had been. I did work with my father for years, and as partners we completed many designs and built many projects; however we made very little profit.

My father and I were successful designers, but that success did not transfer financially. Part of the reason capitalism did not work for us, was that many clients were poor, and even the rich wanted to save money. My father out of the kindness of his heart and joy to serve others, and enthusiasm for his craft, would charge fees that may have gone further during the 1970s. Combine low pay with the rise in cost of living, inflation, and this is why my mother had to support our family by working commercial retail at Walmart and teaching at schools; both jobs luckily she enjoyed as best she could. I worked many other jobs besides architecture, sometimes 5 jobs a month, and always actively found back-up jobs and projects that kept me busy. Despite only having one family car and very few luxuries for middle-class, we saw our wealth diminish no matter how hard we worked, and no matter how many clients we had.

I lived within my means, on the budget of a lower-class individual, while striving to serve the public as a middle-class citizen educated by ‘higher institutions of education’. I did not ‘drop-out’ of the system, the system was not interested in using me for the purpose that my education, psychology, and skill-set allowed. I still continue to live in this way, which I feel is the best I can do with what I have available to me.

I do not say these things to complain that my family suffered more than lower-class people, or disabled people (who can easily be disenfranchised by society and the system). I am not comparing how we lived to how other classes live, the point of being honest about my middle-class family experience is to show why I believe that alternative economic systems are important. I have always been interested in the definition of economics, and silly questions like “why do we say ‘trade & barter’ if those terms are synonyms?”. My favorite question as a child was “what makes a unit of something worth anything?”; or more humorously “can we just start using bottle caps or shells as money?”. I still think those types of questions are good.

Professionals whose public speeches, books, and conversations I have studied include Dr. Dean Baker, Prof. Noam Chomsky, Prof. Mark Blyth, Prof. Michael Hudson, politicians Bernie Sanders, Jill Stein, Jeremy Corbyn, and many others.

Regardless I think it is always good to hear that other people suffer from a type of economic exchange we could call the ‘oops I should have asked for more” syndrome. So I will try to include a few of those stories too for you. Enjoy the most boring theories you never thought might affect you, and keep on keepin’ on.

If I understand some economists correctly, they are saying we are living in a period like the 1920s when all growth was in the stock market; it was considered ‘capital gain’ but was really ‘striping assets’; which resulted in the Stock Market Crash and Great Depression. No pressure people.

Jeremy Corbyn in the Labor (Labour) Party in England, makes Bernie Sanders look like a centrist about public policies.

“For the many, not the few.” – Corbyn Labour party platform

“Our challenge to a rigged system, is bound to meet hostility. Change always involves taking on vested interests. The stakes are very high.” – Jeremy Corbyn, British Labour Party 2017

Great experimentation with individual and social action must take place now! I have been writing and publishing essays on Teaching, Colleges, Jobs, and systemic economic problems and solutions. In 2017 I am producing a series of recordings and essays on ‘SCOD Economics’. This Economic series includes interviews and biographies across disciplines, and intends to address both present injustices and futurist hopes.

We will discuss injustice within our educational and political system, that adversely affects people with alternative thoughts or theories that are not accepted by the conventional establishment corporate ideology frame-work that contains and controls most of the World. We are given their propaganda that “we can all have any job we want, so long as we try hard and get good grades”. Our reality based on my experience is more like “most of us can have at least a minimum-wage job with few benefits, for a limited amount of time, without job security, pathetic interest for savings accounts, the job we find may be against our own interests, and those who cannot get good grades or are bad at following orders get nothing and will probably end up in jail or homeless”. Despite these problems which I have personally witnessed and experienced, the final goal of the series is to plan for a better more sustainable tomorrow for future generations; even if the series conclusions are largely ignored within our life-times. Historic record has some worth.

From the book – SCOD Economics: Alternative Economic Theories

Economics affects everyone, even those that do not want to be concerned with money or finances. This book is a summary of alternative economic commentaries that emphasize democratic ethics. The Sustainable Cooperative for Organic Development believes in valuing human lives as responsible environmental stewards for our biosphere called Earth, and seeks ways to allow for biodiversity in civilization as well as the ecosystem. We believe in less monopolies, less corporate crony politics, less corruption in government, and more ways to support various ways of life and provide future generations with the ability to provide for themselves. Please let’s work together to leave something for the children that is worth inheriting.

 – Drogo Empedocles

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SCOD Economic Theory Series

Posted in Arts (Design & Performance), Economics, Multimedia Communication, Organic Development, Philosophy, Politics, Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , on May 3, 2017 by Drogo

Essays on Educational, Employment, and Systemic Economic Problems and Solutions

by Drogo Empedocles; May 2017

In 2017 I am producing a series of recordings and essays on ‘SCOD Economics’. This Economic series includes interviews and biographies across disciplines, and intends to address both present injustices and futurist hopes. We will discuss injustice within our educational and political system, that adversely affects people with alternative thoughts or theories that are not accepted by the conventional establishment corporate ideology frame-work that contains and controls most of the World. We are given their propaganda that “we can all have any job we want, so long as we try hard and get good grades”. Our reality based on my experience is more like “most of us can have at least a minimum-wage job with few benefits, for a limited amount of time, without job security, pathetic interest for savings accounts, the job we find may be against our own interests, and those who cannot get good grades or are bad at following orders get nothing and will probably end up in jail or homeless”. Despite these problems which I have personally witnessed and experienced, the final goal of the series is to plan for a better more sustainable tomorrow for future generations; even if the series conclusions are largely ignored within our life-times.

*

SCOD Economic Permaculture & Futurist Interviews:

Tom the Data Scientist, Libertarian

Cheri M. the Permaculturalist

Beamer the Scientist, Liberal

Aeyla the Care Giver, Independent

Scorpion the Homeless, Independent

Drogo the Architect, Green

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SCOD Economic Commentaries:

My Favorite Job Was Teaching

How Crony-Capitalism Affects Education

Homeless Ways of Life

Public Art and Street Teaching

Alternative Economic Education

Graduate School Politics in Colleges & University

Permaculture in Economics, Business, & Politics

Quest For Consciousness

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References:

Economics Professor Mark Blyth

Economics Professor Wolff

MIT Professor Noam Chomsky

(Page Under Construction – links and more will be added soon)