Issue 26 - Stick Season 2008
- The Greatest Looting Operation in History Chris Martenson
- Editorial—V for Vermont: Vanishing the U.S. Empire, Visualizing the Vermont Republic Rob Williams
- Letter to the Editor
- Vermont’s Vulnerable Election System Gary Beckwith
- Vermont Vox Populi—Moving Toward a Solar and Biomass Heating Economy Gaelan Brown
- Sense Beyond the Dollar: A Primer on Local Currencies Amy Kirschner
- LocalVore Living—What the Tomatoes Tell Us About Growing Locally Robin McDermott
- Notes from the Middlebury Institute—Why Secession Is A Tough Sell, Part II Thomas Naylor
- Free Vermont Media—Honing The Argument for Vermont Independence Bill McKibben ...
by Dan Dewalt
Find out more at www.replaceVY.org
“Shall the voters of the town of ___________request the Vermont legislature to:
1. Recognize that the 2% of our New England region's power grid supply that is provided by Vermont Yankee Nuclear Power Plant can be replaced with a combination of local, renewable electricity and efficiency measures, along with the purchase of hydro generated electricity, and excess power already in the New England electricity market;
2. Given the viable alternatives and the risks posed by continued...
The budget should be balanced, the treasury should be refilled, public
debt should be reduced, the arrogance of officialdom should be tempered
and controlled, and the assistance to foreign lands should be curtailed
lest Rome become bankrupt. People must again learn to work, instead of living on public assistance. - Marcus Tullius Cicero, 55 B.C. –
People should not fear their governments. Governments should fear their people.
- V for Vendetta, 2005 -
If the remarkable economic events of the past six weeks have proved anything about the United States as a nation, it is this:
Like the Roman republic in Cicero’s time, the U.S. republic is dead.
Author’s note: I had planned to write a follow-up to Exponential Money in a Finite World (published in Vermont Commons,
Fall 2008), where I would continue to make the case that our financial
system is incompatible with reality and is due either for collapse or a
major overhaul over the next 20 years – max. National events have
obviously overtaken the publication schedule, so I will instead focus
on the recent bailout and what this means to each of us over the next
"See, you know the way a bailout works? Here's the way a bailout works. A failed president and a failed Congress invest $700 billion of your money in failed businesses. Believe me, this can't fail."
Editor, Vermont Commons:
Sarah Palin's secessionist sympathies sparked minor hysteria last week.
Her crime was hailing with round praise the work of the cranky Alaskan Independence Party, which advocates a statewide plebiscite on the secession of Alaska from the Union. “The fires of hell are frozen glaciers compared to my hatred for the American government,” the party’s late founder, gold miner Joe Vogler, once said. “And I won...
To learn more, get involved, receive a free newsletter, and to sign a
petition calling for random audits in Vermont, visit the Vermonters for
Voting Integrity website.
Begin by asking yourself this simple question: Who counts the votes?
The counting of votes used to be done by people, in public view,
as required by the 1965 Voting Rights Act. Representatives from
both major parties, the press, and federal election observers could
watch the counting process. The reasons for this seemed obvious:
you can’t cheat when people are watching.
But what would you think of a plan to take all the ballots on election night, and give them to a...
The following interview considers the feasibility of wood being a
primary heating-fuel source for Vermont. New wood stove technology,
combined with sustainable forestry, offers a real opportunity for
Vermont to become more energy independent. According to the Vermont
Department of Forests, Parks and Recreation, Vermont’s landmass is 78
percent forest with 4.5 million acres of woodland and an average of 26
cord of standing wood per acre, for 117 million cord of total standing
In 2005, just over 800,000 cord of wood was harvested, with about 250,000 being used for wood chips and pulp (for paper mills, firewood for homes, and electricity generation), and the rest going to wood products. Since 1966, the...
"Money alone sets all the world in motion."
- Publius Syrus, 42 B. C.
“Yet habit -- strange thing! What cannot habit accomplish?”
So wrote Herman Melville in his epic novel Moby-Dick. More than 150 years later his face would appear on currency near his home in Pittsfield, Massachusetts, and his quote would become relevant not only for describing a captain in search of an elusive whale, but also for a group of citizens searching for an elusive economic vision.
Like many towns in Vermont, Great Barrington, Massachusetts (population 15,000), has a strong sense of community identity and a spirit of self-reliance. Maintaining that vibrancy and independence is a challenge,...
Our tomato crop is way down this year from
last. In 2007 our garden produced more than 230 pounds of
tomatoes that we canned, dried and froze, and enjoyed all the way up
through the middle of July of this year. But with less than a
measly 125 pounds from this year’s garden, I was starting to
panic. How would I fill the gap? Would I have to resort to
buying canned tomatoes in the grocery store?
One night over dinner, we were sharing our disappointment with our garden mentors, Nancy Turner and Dave Cain. They also had a much smaller crop of tomatoes this year than they had in previous years. While I sat there wringing my hands over where I was going to get more tomatoes, Dave said, “I guess we...
Even though 77 percent of the eligible voters in Vermont believe the U.S. government has lost its moral authority and 49 percent think the United States has become unsustainable politically, economically, militarily, and environmentally, only 11.5 percent are in favor of Vermont seceding from the Union and becoming an independent republic. Secession is one of the few subjects about which liberals and conservatives agree: it is an anathema.
In Part 1 of his essay, “Why Secession is a Tough Sell in Vermont and Beyond” (Vermont Commons, Fall 2008), Thomas Naylor, co-founder of The Second Vermont Republic, examined several reasons why the perfectly...