Bare Bones Biology 061 – Fracking II

“A lot of the issues that affect this industry, every industry is having problems, and that goes into agriculture, that goes into everything. This is not just a problem for this industry, this is every single industry. How are people in my generation who are completely apathetic and feel there is nothing we do that matters . . ?”

Yes indeed, every industry is having problems. Of course they’re having problems, because industries are not more powerful than God, and they’re not more powerful than nature. And for at least the past 200 years, they’ve been behaving as though they think they are. The question is, what do you propose to do about it?

If you want what you want, regardless of what the living earth needs, then you will make it worse. Whatever your reasons, emotions, opinions, intentions, desires, wars, tantrums, Presidents, cannot change what the earth needs to stay alive. The living earth does not operate according to whatever people want.

If you mean to force the world to operate the way you think it should, then the answer still is that you cannot. If you mean how can you have yours, regardless of who must pay the price, that behavior will end soon, because the corposystem has already destroyed a large portion of what the earth needs to provide for your needs, and your generation is about to pay the price.

If you mean you are very angry because the corposystem — your culture, in which you deeply believed – probably still believe – has been lying to you, then I don’t blame you. So am I. But being angry will not change what we have done. Neither will blaming someone nor griping nor apathy nor doing nothing. No living thing on this earth has ever had the power to get whatever it wants, over the long term, without doing what is required to get it. And that requires first knowing what you want, and second knowing what is the problem, and third knowing what is possible and what is not possible on the small surface of this tiny living planet.

I’ll take up those issues next time. This time, I’m blowing off steam.

We can not improve life on earth using the laws of physics or engineering or mechanics or technology to suck the life out of this living planet. The living planet is many levels of organization more complicated than physics or engineering or mechanics or even the new biological technologies. If we ignore the requirements of life because we think physics is more powerful or less complicated — then physics will survive because physics represents a real law of nature. But life will not survive.

Physics functions just fine on the sun and the moon and earth, but life on earth is more than the laws of physics, and it will not survive if we take away what it needs to survive, which is mostly a balance among all its parts.

In fact, life on earth is not surviving in good health, as you clearly describe when you say all the industries are failing. But I think your focus is failing. Water is not an industry; air is not an industry; soil is not an industry. These things are the products of a healthy living earth. Yes, they are failing, because the living earth is not healthy.

If you want all that living ecosystem to stop being sick and suddenly start to do what you want it to do? Ahhhhh, should we try force? A revolution? A war against the ecosystem? We’ve been doing that for the past 200 years. For 100 years at least we have very clearly understood the problem. We have known what we have to do to fix it. We don’t want to do it. So we just throw another technological tantrum and complain because it only makes the earth sicker.

I don’t blame you for being angry; I am angry too, knowing all my life how we could help this earth back toward health and watching our children throwing technological tantrums because – they want what they want – but they won’t do what it takes to get it.

Bare Bones Biology 061 – Fracking II
KEOS radio, 89.1 FM, Bryan, TX
Download at
Later this week.

Peach Clubhouse Newsletter 110625

    Movie Schedule (Subject to Change)

Thursday, June 30 – 12 noon (air conditioned) – David vs. Montsanto
Tuesday, July 05 – 6 pm (air conditioned) – The Corporation
Thursday, July 14 – 12 noon – Bioneers Lecture about the Precautionary Principle, and about legal actions mentioned in the film David vs. Montsanto
Tuesday, July 19 – 6 pm – Biography of the Dalai Lama
Thursday, July 28 – Peach Clubhouse will be closed
Tuesday, August 02 – TBA

    Thursday June 30, at noontime

We will rerun the movie David versus Monsanto, and take up where we left off developing a file on this project. Some new events in the news involve birth defects in embryos and a new pathogen in the soil ecosystem that has been disturbed by the heavy applications of Roundup herbicide. We will talk a little about the biology of these problems, and also about the whistleblower who warned us 30 years ago.

    The Corporation July 05

This disk was provided by Debby, and she was right when she said that it’s another of those documentaries that we really do want to see, because knowing the truth gives us power, but we will not leave the room smiling. Long-term power does not come from wielding the biggest stick – it comes from knowing how to cope when the big guy crashes under his own arrogant, ignorant behavior. That is what I learned from my enemy; that’s what my blog has been about from day one.

    Friday Insight Meditation Group – Friday July 01

Meditation group will meet at 2 pm to continue Pema Chodron’s workshop: “The Four Limitless Qualities – Loving Kindness, Compassion, Sympathetic Joy and Equinamity.”

This is a classic teaching of all major lineages of Buddhism, but is presented in a fashion that can be accessed and put to work by anyone, even Americans. We will have also the new book of Sharon Salzburg on the same subject and a presentation that was made at IDP, and some scientific findings that support this ancient method of achieving personal wellbeing.

    A Group of Concerned Progressives

has met to develop an ongoing discussion of what we can expect from fracking in the Brazos Valley. It would be lovely to have input also from other groups.

    1. Our First ten-minute Vidcast
  • will be on a topic critically impacted both by chemicals and by availability of clean water. This is the soil. Without the soil our supply of organic energy (food) would be drastically reduced, both for ourselves and to maintain the ecosystem. Lester Brown has statistics on his web site relative to global loss of available soil resources. And how many people have almost no idea what they are walking around on? Or trying to improve? What are your questions about the soil? Our outline so far includes:

    A-Introduction to soil as an ecosystem.
    B-Definition of an ecosystem.
    C-Description of how an ecosystem responds to stress.
    D-Some documented stresses on soil ecosystems.

    If that doesn’t push your buttons, you can let us know why not.

    The Peach Clubhouse is located in Bryan at 1110 Justine Street. Justine is one block off of Texas, you have to turn off Texas at 17th. Regular hours are Monday and Friday from 10 AM to 4 PM and Thursday from 10 AM to 2 PM.

    Play to Win

    Our culture is a fascinating imitation of reality:

    Fake love/compassion of the hero-winner who must rescue the victim, in order to believe that he is doing something worthwhile;

    Fake victims, must espouse (or truly have) some kind of malaise, so the hero-winners will have someone to rescue;

    Even – God help us – fake villains to make sure the hero/victim game keeps on cycling and recycling so that the majority of people will continue distracted with their communal malaise — while the villains gather in the fruits of everyone else’s (fake) emotional energy.

    It’s the co-dependence game played out at level two (the community/cultural level) and formalized at level three (the corposystem).

    Down here at level one (the individual) it’s not easy to see how to lead a successful life without getting tangled up in all the fake games. Especially because the players get real upset with non-players. But the first step might be to look to the future instead of to one’s own self, and try to image and now live the kind of culture that we say we are trying to build. This helps to clear away the clouds of fake conflicts enough that we can then look at how all these games feed our own egos but do not build real community.

    Everyone gets to pretend she is better than some one of the others. Heroes are better than villains and victims, villains are better than heroes and victims. The victim lifestyle feeds the infinitely voracious egos of the villains and the heroes. And we spend all our lives either doing something “worthwhile” or making someone else feel “worthwhile.” And we never get wherever we thought we were going, but only pass this lifestyle of suffering on to the next generation.

    Look around you – whoever you are! The nicer we are the more suffering we are causing, and we are all spinning that wheel harder and harder and harder, like a bunch of little mice all running in the same direction in our self-enforced categories on the wheel of our culture – sacrificing our personal power on the altar of our co-dependent culture.

    It’s time to wake up and look at the reality of what we are doing, why we are doing it, and the pain it causes us and each other. Certainly we are not changing anything about the future that we claim to be working for. We are working like hell to reinforce the system that we claim to fight against, and in so doing we are causing yet more suffering for future generations.

    But it’s really hard to opt out. The Heroes won’t like you and the villains will try to extinguish the flame of your personal power.

    Whoever wins this game – loses, because we cannot stop the game by playing the game. Nor can we find love or compassion in a life-style that is so focused on ourselves. Because everyone else is also focused on themselves, and none of them really cares about a compassionate whole. They think they do — but love is NOT a game, and it is not about focusing on ourselves, whether we are victims – or heroes – or even villains.

    It Rained!!

    I should go away more often. This time it actually put some inches on the ground and in the pond, and now we are only about 15 inches behind average for the year.

    Bare Bones Biology 060-Fracking I

    I have lived in a Tokyo suburb, and in the shade of a mountain in Montana, but it’s in rural loneliness where I learned the most about community. I learned to sit under a tree in the forest until the little creatures gathered around to investigate this stranger in their midst. Almost like a Bambi forest glade with the little birds and flowers, but I learned this before I ever saw a motion picture. And I always knew it was no fairy tale, but the deepest source of life itself.

    So I already knew this when I went to college, and there I found the wonder of basic science and I dedicated my life to learning how we humans can use our knowledge of basic science to bring to ourselves a life of ordinary happiness, in a perpetual way, like a forest glade that blooms for us and for our children unto the seventh generation yet to be born, and beyond. I mean learning how the whole system works so that we can help us to continue nurturing us on into the future. And now we know; we are choosing not to do it, and that is our human tragedy.

    For a long time, I have been wondering how anyone could make that choice.

    This morning I woke up remembering how exciting it was in college, that three year period when I understood how forest glade ecosystems function – using all the species at once, and all the cycles, and the flow of energy at all the levels (see the Bare Bones Ecology Energy Handbook) – to maintain the well being of us all, the rabbits and birds and flowers and all of us who are a part of the ecosystem.

    This morning after the fracking ]presentation, I woke up remembering how that felt and wondering how anyone, as we heard yesterday and have been hearing for the past 15 years or so – how anyone could dedicate his life to tearing down this wonderful dream of a forever fine future.

    And then I realized there isn’t very much difference between a young person who dedicates her life to understanding the factual truth of a functioning world ecosystem (that would be me). There isn’t that much difference between me and, say, a young man who grows to that age of enlightenment and observes the amazing power of the workings of the corposystem. A young man raised on Star Wars make-believe instead of the beauty of factual reality can believe in the corposystem very much in the same way I believe in the ecosystem. Very much as Bernie Madoff’s clients and even his sons believed in his Ponzi scheme, even though anyone can do the math and know there is no future in it. Star Wars economics is of course impossible to sustain for the same reason that any Ponzi scheme is impossible to sustain within a universe that operates according to the laws of energy and the law of cause and effect. Anyone can do the math. But when we are dreaming big dreams and deciding where to devote our lives, if we don’t know about schemes and scams and the first and second law of thermodynamics we get big ideas and are willing to make big sacrifices for them. That’s the tragedy of human kind.

    Of course there are no tragedies at levels three and four (corposystem and ecosystem), so far as I know. It’s all about cause and effect. But level one, the individual person and level two, the communities – the tragedy is all around us now, in the air and the water and the soil and every forest glade. Not only the sacrifice of our best human values – honor, honesty, compassion — but also the promotion of suffering – and the effort it takes for idealistic people to believe that what they are doing is for the best.

    Even though anyone can do the math.

    Bare Bones Biology 060 – Fracking
    KEOS Radio, 89.1 FM, Bryan, Texas
    Audio download later this week at

    Juneteenth Weekend in Bryan

    What an interesting place Bryan is. In the middle of town the farmers’ market is bulging with people and produce, on my end of town the Juneteenth parade — for some reason they switched directions, but exuberant as usual, and downtown a number of events including students of the Marian Anderson Quartet.

    Did you Think it was About People?

    If you follow TomDispatch, they ran an what shall we say – the guy was trying to prove that he is sophisticated by showing that he was not? (Lapham) Using the cleverest of word combinations. I couldn’t resist answering.

    “Nice to be able to talk funny but the answer is there will be neither food nor money. In the first place food has a history of millions of years since the first animal ate something, and in the second place money does not exist — or at least has no value — unless it represents goods, and all goods that relate to life come ultimately from growing plants. Especially organic food energy that people require to stay alive and can not get anywhere else in the whole universe (we tried). When the crash comes it will be because we ran out of goods. Because we don’t have enough photosynthetic capacity to produce enough organic food energy to keep the earth ecosystem healthy. Because people ate it right out of balance.

    Did you think it was about fig newtons? It’s about the ecosystem staying in balance.”

    Doesn’t it make you think of old whatsisname playing around while Rome was burning? That we care more about our sophistication than we do about our one and only home?

    Peach Clubhouse Newsletter 110607

      Fracking Tour

    The fracking tour was a thwacking big success, beyond expectations, and the reverberations are still reverberating in a number of ways. We aren’t dropping the subject. It will be one of our ongoing tentacles and you will hear more from time to time.

    In Anne’s interview, Sharon Wilson stated that fracking uses an “unsustainable amount of water.” Good point Sharon. My guess is that it would use more energy to recycle the water – more energy than the wells are producing.

    Check out the Bloomberg comment on the relationship between drought and energy production.

    (And BTW, the same problem with trying to “make” food. Making any of these natural products requires more energy than it produces. It’s all about the second law of thermodynamics.)

    Maps of the water aquifers and the proposed drilling can be downloaded from our blog, lower right side:

    For more information, literature is on file at the public library and at the Peach Clubhouse.

      Friday Insight Meditation Group – Friday June 17

    Meditation group will meet at 2 pm to continue Pema Chodron’s workshop: “The Four Limitless Qualities – Loving Kindness, Compassion, Sympathetic Joy and Equinamity.”

    This is a classic teaching of all major lineages of Buddhism, but is presented in a fashion that can be accessed and put to work by anyone, even Americans. We will have also the new book of Sharon Salzburg on the same subject and a presentation that was made at IDP, and some scientific findings that support this ancient method of achieving personal wellbeing.

      Change of Pace !

    – June 21 — in an air conditioned clubhouse –
    a special Tuesday movie

    At 6 pm we will show Kiki’s Delivery Service, one of my all-time favorite movies produced by Hayao Miyazaki, in English. You will leave smiling.

    The Clubhouse will be closed on Thursday, June 23.

    Thursday June 30, at noontime, we will rerun the movie David versus Monsanto.

    On the first Tuesday of July we are trying to decide whether to show:
    Journey to Planet Earth – or
    The Corporation

    The Peach Clubhouse is located in Bryan at 1110 Justine Street. Justine is one block off of Texas, you have to turn off Texas at 17th.