Wednesday, May 24, 2006

Where is The Center?

Got into this new interactive map thing -- CommunityWalk . You can put these maps inside blogs but it's too late (or early) now for me to get that one going.

For now if you don't know but want to know where The Center is click here to see the map.

That be it.


Tuesday, May 23, 2006

Wikipedia Question???

Anyone reading this in the greater Flathead Valley familiar or working with Wikipedia? Kalispell, Montana is there! It's pretty cool.

Open source architecture. There isn't any end to human imagination and the desire to show it to everyone. I really love it.

I have also been looking at RSS news feeds. What are they? I see the little buttons on a lot of things. Anyway, I signed up for one...NewsIsFree. It uses Lussumo Vanilla -- a "simple, extensible web forum."

I had no idea! But I have lots of ideas!

So back to the question....Wikipedia. Let me know please. We need to form an alliance.


Report: Movie Night! @ The Center

The showing of The Power of Community Cuba documentary went well. There were thirteen of us at The Center on Sunday afternoon for the viewing and a lively discussion.

The film had its own impact. Some said it was good to see that a whole country of people could make changes necessary after their 'peak oil' situation. We wondered what the follow-up of the story is and if the film accurately represented what happened for most Cubans, not just for those filmed.

The documentary was produced by The Community Solution. They have links to some very good slide shows: "Energy Modeling," "Community -- the Best Solution,"and "Cuba--A Peak Oil Country."

These were our discussion points:

--Are we hooked on oil?
--How does that look here in Kalispell, Montana"?
--What is our own energy footprint?
--What does community mean to you?
--Do you know your neighbors?
--Have you experienced major change before?
--How did you respond?
--Do you know how and what you are supporting when you:
Do your banking
Pay your grocer
Pay your taxes


-- Emotional Freedom Technique: ~ Gary Craig's website; downloadable manual and lots of testimonials

-- The Community Solution: ~ The people who put together The Power of Community film. Many PowerPoint slide shows with well-presented information on Peak Oil, Energy Solutions, Community, etc.

-- Food First – Institute for Food & Development Policy: ~ See “Cuba's New Agricultural Revolution: The Transformation of Food Crop Production in Contemporary Cuba at:

-- AERO (Alternative Energy Resource Organization): ~ With a 30-year history in Montana, AERO has played a huge part in education and support of alternative energy. They are Regional Coordinators of the international Buy Fresh / Buy Local movement (

-- Solari: ~ Solari means “to relieve anxiety through illumination.” Solari bylines are: Who's your farmer? Who's your banker? Where's your money? Lots of resources – places to start.

Still the question remains: what motivates people to take action? It's different for each individual and for every place. It's a question that really needs to be at the top of the list in talking about any action. What revs my engines and gets me going?

After a swing around the room with introductions and impressions of the film, we did some 'tapping.' The EFT process mentioned topmost of the Resources above. What did we tap on? Our set-up statement was: Even though I don't know how I can do it I......

So we don't know how to do IT -- whatever it is. I submit that a large chunk of the not knowing has to do with our own emotional blocks, fears, apprehensions, doubts, etc., etc. Clear those out and the unknown becomes the known replacing frozen inaction with positive forward movement.

...and move we will. Stay tuned.


Tuesday, May 16, 2006

Don't Forget MOVIE NIGHT!

A Documentary Film
About One Nation's Answers
to a Problem That Changed
All of Their Lives

(See post below for details.)

The Power of Community: How Cuba Survived Peak Oil
Sunday, May 21st
4pm to 6pm ~ $7 per person
Children Welcome with Parental Supervision ~ Yogi Tea Served

The President, The Dixie Chicks & Troops on the Borders

I am 'feeling' the state of our nation this morning. It could be because I listened to NPR with talk about troops on our southern border, or opening up today's truthout editorial talking about the Dixie Chicks, Valerie Plame & Bush., or hearing about flooding in the eastern US, kids out of school because of impassable roads and that being a problem (the kids being out of school.)

I wasn't aware of the situation with The Dixie Chicks although the situation came about in 2003. Here's an excerpt from the editorial.

The Bush-on-the-sidelines cases are illustrated by what happened to the Dixie Chicks, a three-woman country-western band that has faced three years of boycotts because lead singer, Natalie Maines, criticized Bush as he was stampeding the nation toward war with Iraq.

During a March 10, 2003, concert in London, Maines, a Texan, remarked, "we're ashamed the President of the United States is from Texas." Two days later - just a week before Bush launched the Iraq invasion - she added, "I feel the President is ignoring the opinions of many in the U.S. and alienating the rest of the world."

With war hysteria then sweeping America, the right-wing attack machine switched into high gear, organizing rallies to drive trucks over Dixie Chicks CDs and threatening country-western stations that played Dixie Chicks music. Maines later apologized, but it was too late to stop the group's songs from falling down the country music charts.

On April 24, 2003, with the Iraq War barely a month old, NBC News anchor Tom Brokaw asked Bush about the boycott of the Dixie Chicks. The President responded that the singers "can say what they want to say," but he added that his supporters then had an equal right to punish the singers for their comments.

"They shouldn't have their feelings hurt just because some people don't want to buy their records when they speak out," Bush said. "Freedom is a two-way street."

This is pretty outrageous and I am sure not an isolated action.

Troops on the border feels like the next step towards blocking the incoming AND the outgoing -- everyone -- illegal or not. Military. It makes my stomach twist.

And the kids I had an idea for. What if under circumstances where schools are closed and kids are out and about, parents not at work either because of the kids or the circumstance -- what if we called it an 'alternative education day'? What could kids learn when school is closed because of floods? A whole lot, and it could be fun. Bottomline is it's an opportunity for creativity for everyone. I would like to see it.

And right now I'm thinking about what I can do right here where I'm at -- no acts of god happening (yeah, right!), gas still flowing, sun shining, food in stores and my fridge.

How can I make myself and my community stronger?

I have ideas......

Right now I'm working on Solari. Take a look at Who's your farmer? Who's your banker? Where's your money? Not idle questions but under the Solari model, the subject of projects of discovering the answers to. I'm working on it.


Thursday, May 04, 2006

Movie Night @ The Center

A Documentary Film
About One Nation's Answers
to a Problem That Changed
All of Their Lives

The Power of Community: How Cuba Survived Peak Oil
Sunday, May 21st
4pm to 6pm ~ $7 per person
Children Welcome with Parental Supervision ~ Yogi Tea Served

"Try to image an airplane suddenly losing its engines. It was really a crash"... A crash that put Cuba into a state of shock. There were frequent blackouts in its oil-fed electric power grid, up to 16 hours per day. The average daily caloric intake in Cuba dropped by a third... So Cubans started to grow local organic produce out of necessity, developed bio-pesticides and bio-fertilizers as petrochemical substitutes, and incorporated more fruits and vegetables into their diets. Since they couldn't fuel their aging cars, they walked, biked, rode buses, and carpooled."
In 1989-1990, things changed drastically for Cuba. Before then the country was the centerpiece of the Council of Mutual Economic Assistance. Due to societal transformations in Eastern Europe and the former Soviet Union, COMECON as it was known, was dissolved. Cuba was faced, almost overnight, with a drastic shortfall of imports, and the disappearance of preferential markets for its own principal exports. (See a full report of this in the Food First sponsored "Development Report No. 14 - Cuba's New Agricultural Revolution: The Transformation of Food Crop Production in Contemporary Cuba", by Laura J. Enriquez, or the shorter article published in Harper's Magazine in June 2005 titled "The Cuba Diet".)

The hour-long documentary about how Cuba dealt with this new situation was produced by The Community Solution and it is getting very good reviews.

So how would we react under similar circumstances? Why should we are about Cuba? Is 'peak oil' affecting us? How will it when it does?

There are many who say we are on the verge of changes -- very HUGE changes.

I feel this is true but none of us knows for sure what the future will hold. What I do know is we are being presented with the opportunity to learn something. And then to take a look at our own community, our own family -- our own individual lives most importantly. Now, we can make our own decisions. Under duress of 'the HUGE change' this may be more difficult, or almost impossible. I really don't believe anything is impossible. Our options are as wide as our imagination and our ability to manifest our own destiny.

So the film is being shown. All are welcome, including children (with parents to watch them.) I've ordered some comfortable chairs for sitting on the floor -- you can bring a blanket or pillows if you wish. I will serve hot Yogi Tea.

Space is limited so a call or e-mail ahead of time will assure a seat. If we have too many people for one afternoon, we can play it again the next.

If you have a group that would like to see the film, please let me know.

The Center contact information is:
427 East Center Street ~ Kalispell, Montana
Phone: 406-756-3458
Look forward to seeing you there and to hearing your thoughts.