1. Hey Guest !

    Welcome to the new Higherside Forums. To start participating, you'll need a password for the system. You can get one established by clicking the "forgot password" link, and a URL to create one will be sent to your THC+ email. Your username should be the same, but these are now two independent systems. As a result, changes to your THC+ username/password will not be reflected in your THC Forum username and vise versa. Also, as a bonus, your ability to participate in the forums will continue beyond the life of your THC+ membership.

    Enjoy the upgrade! Users can now make a full profile, start conversations (private messages) between each other, give and track likes, utilize trophies, conduct polls, write public statuses, comment on statuses of others, subscribe to forums, receive alerts, see latest activity, share media, and much more!
    Dismiss Notice

Community Activism 101 - Are we Neckbeards or are We (Wo)men?

Discussion in 'Guest/Topic Suggestions' started by joshhinnenkamp, Mar 17, 2019.

  1. joshhinnenkamp

    joshhinnenkamp New Member

    Joined:
    Feb 20, 2018
    Messages:
    27
    Likes Received:
    18
    I think a show on DIY Community Activism would be a nice change of pace for Higherside. All of us Brother and Sisters and Other would love an episode that inspires hope in changing our community and world, by seeing the work of various individuals, groups, and communities, and giving us a taste on HOW to make those changes. Wouldn't it be great to see positive, meaningful work being done all around us?

    We don’t have to agree with the politics or worldview of an organization/group/individual in order to learn HOW they helped create a movement, HOW they created change, HOW they structured their movement. You don’t want to start your food shelter that is full of radical anarchist politics, crusty punks, and smelly squatters? Start your own (just be prepared to learn from them since they've been doing it for 30 years).

    So, I guess what I am proposing is a show that gives the audience
    1) Success stories of organizations, groups, individuals that have used alternative building and community organizing to create the future they wish to see AND to positively change the community around them. This would provide the uplifting portion of the show. We would also get:
    2) Nuts and bolts "how tos" in navigating the corporate and state terrain intent on crushing you. These success stories not only show their success but HOW they did it. How did they find like-minded people? How did they organize around an issue? Did they incorporate? Are they a loose affiliation? A neighborhood group? Are they operating under the radar? How do they deal with police, with city ordinances, codes, snoopy neighbors? Do they have a governing board or nothing so concrete? What advice can they give to help someone else that wished to either do something similar or wanted to use a similar operating structure (but instead of helping feed the homeless, they wished to use the same structure as an anti-gov't libertarian lending library)?

    My thought would be this could be an episode with a series of clips that would make up a whole as each interview might provide another piece of the puzzle to help us make a difference in this world.

    THIS IS NOT AN EXHAUSTIVE LIST

    For instance -- there could be a guest on to discuss how they started and successfully run a Food Not Bombs chapter that helps feed homeless populations without having to go through state involvement. Lots of nuts and bolts could be discussed along with how the organization has dealt with the cops, zoning, health laws, etc.
    * Food Not Bombs website http://foodnotbombs.net/new_site/

    There could be a guest on that talks about their quest and success in starting a community garden or community food forest in a low income, grocery-scarce area (or any area). Land issues, money issues, water issues, city government issues, etc.
    * Basic how to start community garden: https://www.wikihow.com/Start-a-Community-Garden
    * Community permaculture food forest in Seattle: https://beaconfoodforest.org/

    You could bring an (anarchist) activist like Scott Crow (Austin, TX) or Lisa Fithian (Houston, TX) to talk about the founding of the Common Ground Relief (later Common Ground Collective), originally a DIY group that formed in the immediate aftermath of Hurrican Katrina, that provided basic supplies, homeowner assistance, and even startup DIY medical clinics, as the US government showed its incompetence and unconcern during this humanitarian crisis. Topics could center around the importance of working with the people in those communities, and the necessity of citizens' involvement and leadership (as opposed to you coming in and imposing your ideas and will). Common Ground had a government informant in their midst (Brandon Darby -- now a Fox and Breitbart pundit) and Scott could talk about mistakes made in dealing with infiltration, the necessity of strong security culture, etc.
    * Scott Crow on founding Common Grounds: https://www.thedailyliberator.com/scott-crow-common-ground-collective-leftright-alliances/

    Shit, you could have a quick 15 minute "Know Your Rights" training in dealing with the police. What are your rights when they knock on your door, stop you in the street, pull you over in your car? What is the protocol for when you do go through something like this? What common mistakes do people make in these situations? What are the tactics of the police? What are they allowed to do and what are they not? What happens if you are arrested? -- ALL of this knowledge can really help make a community stronger and healthier.
    * This is a know your rights pamphlet (catered more towards activism -- but building alternatives, which we should all be doing, is a form of activism) from the National Lawyer’s Guild -- https://www.nlg.org/know-your-rights/

    There could be a clip with someone talking about their activism around changing/ending the drug laws -- working within policy part, on the streets action, even lobbying action. How they got rural white and inner-city blacks to give a stronger voice to the necessary changes, etc.
    * 2010 article about legalization activists in Colorado -- https://www.thenation.com/article/budding-prospects-youth-activists-push-marijuana-reform/

    Someone like Lucas Benitez who cofounded the Coalition of Immokalee Workers, which helped end some of the more egregious working conditions and mistreatment among workers in the tomato fields of Florida. He also significantly helped increased workers' pay in the process. He later helped improve the relationships between farmworkers and corporations (through mass boycotts), including fast food industries, and getting worker much higher pay (Fuck Wendy's). He could talk about he dealt with the corporate elites and local franchise owners. He could discuss how bad things had to get, how low people had to sink, before that change was possible, and what was done to awaken others.

    How to start a cooperative. Jackson, Mississippi has sort of reinvented itself through all kind of grassroots community activism, including the startup of dozens of cooperative that are actually democratically run. * https://cooperationjackson.org/

    Groups that help to stop human trafficking. How did they start their group/organization, get funding, legality issues, etc.

    How to start a community intention and prayer group for a neighborhood. Or people could join Gordon White on Rune Soup for his intention experiments, they could join Mitch Horowitz for his daily intentions or they could sign up an participate in Lynne McTaggart's experiments. It would be cool if neighborhoods started holding daily or weekly intention experiments for their own communities. Has that been done in the West?

    Creating EMF-free zones (or as close as possible)

    Farming and permaculture activists to talk about their growing movement, land issues, food issues, marketing and distribution issues, farmer's markets, etc. how to get involved.

    Union activists. I know the listening audience may be divided upon this issue. And I know the bigger unions often sell out its people, but as the power of the elites get more concentrated and as fewer and fewer decent-paying jobs are available, union activism will end up becoming a person's only real ability for change and agency among the workplace. There are plenty of activists that can speak on this (and how fun and fulfilling it is to start a union that gets you better pay, along with the difficulties from the state and corporations). Even if some sort of universal income comes about, we will still be underpaid for our work and still need unions to increase that pay.

    Community barter systems --
    * This is a pretty big (maybe too big) and successful barter system in Maryland/Virginia – this is just an example. http://bartersystemsinc.com/
    * How to start a neighborhood barter group -- http://www.grassrootsgrantmakers.org/wp-content/uploads/2011/10/Neighborhood_Bartering_Club.pdf

    Community bike project and collective:
    * Austin Texas Yellow Bikes Project -- https://austinyellowbike.org/
    * Columbus Ohio used bike collective - https://www.bikeco-op.org/

    FREE 40 PLUS HOUR PERMACULTURE COURSE -- in classroom setting from North Carolina State
    https://mediasite.online.ncsu.edu/online/Catalog/Full/f5a893e74b7c4b7980fd52dcd1ced71521

    MORE GREAT potential for community activism 101:

    GMO food activists

    Internet security culture and protocols for anonymity-- how to be as under the radar as possible

    Alternative health practices and clinics

    Under the radar farmer's markets that barter and sell all kinds of alternative health medicines and even illegal drugs (for medicinal and other)

    Free speech activists,

    the radical doula movement,

    home birth movement,

    inner-city breakfast programs

    how to start a community lend/lease program (so we don't buy shit we rarely use)

    how to start a skill share space

    how to stop a pipeline or a fracking site

    Homeschool movement

    Wikileaks and related sites used for whistleblowers/insiders

    Sex work activism

    Local election work (local elections can be very important for local communities)

    How to start a school that teaches ancestral language and culture (like we see popping up all over various indigenous reservations). https://www.stjo.org/
     
    #1 joshhinnenkamp, Mar 17, 2019
    Last edited: Mar 18, 2019
    thwolf, rani and (deleted member) like this.
  2. joshhinnenkamp

    joshhinnenkamp New Member

    Joined:
    Feb 20, 2018
    Messages:
    27
    Likes Received:
    18
    PEOPLE -- PLEASE FEEL FREE TO ADD IDEAS OR SUCCESS STORIES -- at the very least we could start compiling ideas of how we can get involved, even if Greg wouldn't find such a show a good fit (or if such an undertaking would be a little overwhelming).
     
  3. rani

    rani Active Member

    Joined:
    Jul 5, 2018
    Messages:
    212
    Likes Received:
    185
    https://www.growingabundance.org.au/grow/harvest-program/

    Local food, no waste.
    The Growing Abundance Project is all about Local food.
    From Growing it to Eating it.
    We harvest from backyard trees.
    We prepare local feasts.
    We share produce between our volunteers and the community.
    We love community.
     
  4. enjoypolo

    enjoypolo Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jun 17, 2016
    Messages:
    600
    Likes Received:
    264
    Thanks a million for this thread. It's like planting an oak tree seed.
    I started recently a thread on the blue economy, a movement spearheaded by eco-entrepreneur Gunter Pauli with tons of ingenious circular economy ideas based on local resources, usually from waste. For some examples, here are 120 unique cases inspired by actual projects.
    The thread has great contributions from other members with many ideas.

    My favourite project is growing mycelium using coffee grinds. It's been lots of trial and error, but I'm finally getting better at growing oyster mushrooms from coffee-waste, and things like cardboard (cup sleeves), saw-dust from work's tool shop. I'll be sure to write a quick-and-easy guide on doing just that soon. Only a few months I had taken for granted how valuable mycelium (and mushrooms) are, at human and cosmic scale.

    Another great tip for using waste, is to re-consider glass-ware. I use my kombucha bottles filled with water to grow mint, oregano, lettuce heads in glass jars. I found out this method is very similar to what's known as Kratky method, or simply put, it's a hydroponics without need for electricity. I will be testing this very shortly as well, and keep updates.


    Some links I found useful lately:
    https://nestmakerspace.weebly.com/designing-with-nature.html

    https://www.cbc.ca/parents/play/view/how-to-plant-a-small-space-garden

    Coffee to Oyster mushrooms:
    https://www.gourmetmushrooms.co.uk/growing-oyster-mushrooms-using-waste-coffee-grounds/
    https://uwaterloo.ca/ecology-lab/about/blogs/oyster-mushroom-blog
    Rotterzwam, Netherlands:


    Mushroom Education resource - Four Sigmatic coffee

    PS: I also get inspiration from design contests, like the following:
    James Dyson Award:
    https://www.jamesdysonaward.org/en-ca/past-winners/

    Biomimicry Institute's Global Design Challenge:
    https://challenge.biomimicry.org/en/custom/gallery/directory
    Non-Circulating Hydroponic Growing System by World Hunger Team, from Nashville, TN
     

    Attached Files:

    #4 enjoypolo, Mar 18, 2019
    Last edited: Mar 18, 2019
    thwolf likes this.
  5. joshhinnenkamp

    joshhinnenkamp New Member

    Joined:
    Feb 20, 2018
    Messages:
    27
    Likes Received:
    18
    thwolf and (deleted member) like this.
  6. enjoypolo

    enjoypolo Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jun 17, 2016
    Messages:
    600
    Likes Received:
    264
    Incredible!! It’s funny, I’m just about to pickup David Holmgren’s book on permaculture, so this will be a great accompaniment.
    Many, big thanks!
     
  7. enjoypolo

    enjoypolo Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jun 17, 2016
    Messages:
    600
    Likes Received:
    264
    I've been spending the past few days doing gardening work quite a bit, both at home, and outside.
    Finally today, I was able to complete my DIY garden, and plant some veggies, as well flowers. I have been reading a book on the importance of bees, and so I decided to plant a corner of flowers (black-eyed susans) for them.

    The wood I got it from scraps at work that was going to get wasted, and so I really just spent money on a cordless drill (small & cheap, but really handy!) and the seeds. I also used wasted cardboard in layers as liners to absorb the water.
    My goal is to colonize the cardboard (and soil) with my oyster mycelium to make it water-repellant, and moisture-retaining, as well helping the roots with nutrients; and maybe, I'll even have some oyster mushrooms growing at some point, who knows!

    I also germinated 10 Freedom Dreams cannabis seeds (1%THC/10% CBD) (5 control; 5 with mycelium to test efficacy of myco-plant symbiosis) as well as a small Kratky setup with nothing but a small plastic tray and cardboard.

    It's gonna be a fun spring! Hard work will pay off I hope. As you can tell, I'm no handy man, but for the first time, it ain't too bad! I'd be happy to share some details if anyone's interested, but seems like I have much to learn.:D:p
     

    Attached Files:

    joshhinnenkamp and thwolf like this.
  8. rani

    rani Active Member

    Joined:
    Jul 5, 2018
    Messages:
    212
    Likes Received:
    185
    Mate,! That is a flippin' brilliant idea. I have been wanting to build some wicking beds for a while, but I have had pause because I don't like the plastic liners, and couldn't really think of a better alternative. Please let me know how your experiment goes!
     
    thwolf and (deleted member) like this.
  9. thwolf

    thwolf Member

    Joined:
    May 11, 2018
    Messages:
    66
    Likes Received:
    34
    #9 thwolf, Mar 22, 2019
    Last edited: Mar 22, 2019
    1 person likes this.
  10. rani

    rani Active Member

    Joined:
    Jul 5, 2018
    Messages:
    212
    Likes Received:
    185
  11. enjoypolo

    enjoypolo Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jun 17, 2016
    Messages:
    600
    Likes Received:
    264
    I discovered this upside-down technique yesterday, planning to give it some try soon with tomatoes:


    An interesting note, is how ironically, growing food efficiently is sought out by none other than.. NASA, for growing food in space.
    I wonder if this is our prelude to growing interstellar food. :rolleyes:

    I've gotta give Callum Coats book another read, because vortexing water does an incredible job for nutrient absorption in the water, as well killing pathogens and bacterias (great for mycelium). And bottles should provide an ideal design for that.

    PS:
     
    #11 enjoypolo, Mar 24, 2019
    Last edited: Mar 24, 2019
  12. rani

    rani Active Member

    Joined:
    Jul 5, 2018
    Messages:
    212
    Likes Received:
    185
    So.Much.Plastic.

    I would be very wary of trying to grow 'clean food' in plastic containers. They should be a last resort if you ask me.
     
    1 person likes this.
  13. rani

    rani Active Member

    Joined:
    Jul 5, 2018
    Messages:
    212
    Likes Received:
    185
    Super excellent guide to building solidarity networks.
    "
    The Seattle Solidarity Network (or “SeaSol” for short) is a small but growing workers’ and tenants’ mutual support organization that fights for specific demands using collective direct action. Founded in late 2007 by members of the Industrial Workers of the World (IWW), SeaSol is directly democratic, is all-volunteer, has no central authority, and has no regular source of funding except small individual donations. We have successfully defeated a wide variety of employer and landlord abuses, including wage theft, slumlord neglect, deposit theft, outrageous fees, and predatory lawsuits.
    "
     
    1 person likes this.
  14. enjoypolo

    enjoypolo Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jun 17, 2016
    Messages:
    600
    Likes Received:
    264
    In the spirit of regenerative and resilient communities, I wanted to share this documentary on this very subject.

    It's called Voices of Transition (2012) by Nils Aguilar, and features the work and activities of organic and permaculture farmers around the world, from France, UK and even to Cuba.
    It also features Rob Hopkins, co-founder of Transition Towns Movement which is a movement aiming to create local ecosystems harnessing the power and diversity within towns/cities to create more resilient communities.
    Cuba is a fascinating case-study for locally produced, organic Food Systems as it's an entirely self-sustainable economy (or at least, close to it).

    So yeah, very great film, and hopefully it will inspire you. Since I couldn't find it anywhere, I purchased a copy and uploaded the files to my Mega account. I like to think it's fair-use, and for the greater-good.:p

    Upon looking more into Transition Movement, it's really awesome. For instance, one of the pillars of communities is of course, the economy. As a result, some of the towns have come up with their own micro-currencies often based on time-spent on activities (e.g., like growing food).
    I love the concept of a currency based on regional activities, made by the effort of the community. These initiatives are spreading all over Europe, although you won't hear about it in the news.

    Here's an article by Rob Hopkins talking about the Totnes Pound. Variants in towns across France also exist, one of my favourites is the one called La Graine (meaning 'The Seed') in the southern city of Montpellier.

    For more information on the Economics, visit Reconomy.org
    More information on Transition Movement, visit their website, and the guide here to get an idea.

    Link to download/stream (Voices of Transition) (English with international subtitles);)
     

    Attached Files: