Democratic Forest Trusts (PDF)in Watson, Alan; Dean, Liese; Sproull, Janet, comps. 2006. Science and stewardship to protect and sustain wilderness values: Eighth World Wilderness Congress Symposium; 2005 September 30-October 6; Anchorage, AK.Democratic trusts with leadership elected by citizen-members promise to solve many of the problems afflicting both traditional government and corporate ownership of forestlands.Â This article explores these issues in some depth.Complexity and the Dream of Human Control of Eco-Systems (PDF)in Watson, Alan; Dean, Liese; Sproull, Janet, comps. 2006. Science and stewardship to protect and sustain wilderness values: Eighth World Wilderness Congress Symposium; 2005 September 30-October 6; Anchorage, AK.The title captures it.Â I then explore the kinds of institutions compatible with both nature and the modern world that are implied from this analysis.Rethinking the Obvious: Modernity and Living Respectfully With Nature (PDF)The Trumpeter: Journal of Ecosophy, Winter, 1997.Modernity is usually considered a wrong turn in terms of respect for and sustaining the environment.Â I argue the reality is more complex, for modernity has freed us from personal dependence on agriculture, ended the economic value of children, radically reduced the likelihood of large scale wat, and shifted much production to intellectual rather than material capital.Â This partially decouples society from nature, which gives us important opportunities as well as problems.Towards an Ecocentric Political Economy (PDF)The Trumpeter, Fall, 1996.This paper begins my effort at showing how liberal modernity can be harmonized with an ecocentric perspective on our relationship with the natural world.Â It is a corrective to much “free market environmental” literature that sacrifices Nature to money as well as to anti-liberal attacks by well-meaning but economically naÃ¯ve environmentalists.Unexpected Harmonies: Self-Organization in Liberal Modernity and Ecology (PDF)The Trumpeter, Journal of Ecosophy, 10:1, Winter 1993This is my initial paper exploring how what I term ‘evolutionary liberal’ thought can be an important means by which society and nature can be brought into greater harmony.Â The other Trumpeter papers build on it.Deep Ecology and Liberalism: The Greener Implications of Evolutionary Liberalism (PDF)Review of Politics, Fall, 1996.Liberal thought and deep ecology are usually regarded as mutually exclusive. But the “evolutionary” tradition offers a way to integrate the two through commonalties in the work of David Hume, Michael Polanyi, Arne Naess, and Aldo Leopold, providing a stronger foundation for liberalism while strengthening the case for an ecocentric ethic.(Related subjects: Ecology)Saving Western Towns: A Jeffersonian Green Proposal (PDF)in Writers on the Range, Karl Hess and John Baden, eds., University Press of Colorado, 1998.Developmental pressures in the rural and small town West involve three groups: long term residents, new arrivals, and environmentalists. Today their interests often conflict. This conflict is in part the outcome of institutions which prevent harmonizing competing interests. The concept of developmental trusts, both for rural regions and for small communities offers a means whereby these interests can be harmonized for the benefit of all concerned.(Related subjects: Politics)Social Ecology, Deep Ecology, and Liberalism (PDF)Critical Review, 6: 2-3, 1992.Murray Bookchin is considered a leading radical environmental theorist. However, his analysis is incapable of leading humankind towards a more respectful and sustainable relationship with the natural world. Criticisms of Bookchin from both the deep ecology and evolutionary liberal perspective complement one another, pointing the way towards a better understanding of how modernity relates to the environment.The paper as a whole offers an early discussion of issues that are more clearly addressed in later papers, particularly Deep Ecology and Liberalism (1996) and the three Trumpeter articles in 1997, 1996, and 1993. However, there are other ideas in the article which have not been developed more thoroughly elsewhere.
The Washington Post reported in a front page article, that in retrospect the Bush regime’s practice of torture saved no lives, led to no critical information, foiled no plots, and like most everything else that group told the American people, was based on lies. Dan Froomkin provides a more accessible account of the Post’s findings. The always wonderful Digby does as well, here and here.
Further, we now know that incarcerating innocent people was a deliberate strategy of the Cheney/Bush administration. Even when they knew most of these men were innocent, they continued to hold them. Col. Lawrence Wilkerson, a Republican and former Chief of Staff to Colin Powell added In his important posting for the Washington Note blog,
“U.S. leadership became aware of this lack of proper vetting very early on and, thus, of the reality that many of the detainees were innocent of any substantial wrongdoing, had little intelligence value, and should be immediately released.”
Former Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld and Dick Cheney opposed addresing the problem because “to have admitted this reality would have been a black mark on their leadership.” Far better to leave hundreds of innocent men, from 13 to 90, locked up indefinitely.
The initial disregard with whether the incarcerated were actually guilty of anything was apparently due to some computerized model for finding information that happily sacrificed the innocent in a failed effort to capture the guilty. Their continued incarceration was due to the depravity of Rumsfeld and Cheney. For more, see here.
Given this widespread and depraved criminality it was with enormous pleasure that I read war crimes charges have now been filed in Spain against many key players behind torture in the Bush administration. Because Spanish citizens and residents were arrested and tortured by the US, Spain has standing under the law. The judge who nailed Pinochet will handle the case. At this writing it looks as if the case will go forward and arrest warrants will be issued. It cannot be too soon, even if in practice it only means that these thugs will be confined to American territory for the rest of their lives to avoid arrest for their crimes.
The United States government, Democratic and Republican alike, may no longer believe in the rule of law, but happily other nations do. Decent Americans can only hope Rumsfeld and Cheney will be next.