Archive for the ‘Local Green’ Category

Aug16

Eric McDavid’s Philly Tour Stop

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Eric McDavid in Philly.mp3

Former eco-political prisoner Eric McDavid is near the end of a speaking tour where he goes into detail about life behind bars and how he managed to make it through nine years including significant periods in solitary confinement. If Eric does another tour and comes to your neck of the woods, definitely try to make it out to see him speak, it’s worth it.

Because of security culture, I did not record the Q&A portion of the talk where he goes into detail about the disgusting piece of shit informant who entrapped him. There has been much written on that subject if you want to learn more. What you will hear from him in this podcast is how he managed day by day life behind bars, details of the case against him, and his general thoughts and feelings on what it’s like now to be free.

Watching him speak was like being in the presence of a warrior who has returned from battle. He projects strength and self control, and it’s obvious that these aspects are what helped him survive for nine years behind bars; but there’s hardly a trace of the coldness or hardness one might expect. Prison did not break him or turn him into someone else. Part of the reason for this is the support he received while he was locked down; the letters, books, well wishes and visits obviously sustained him, and we must make sure we’re providing this support to all political prisoners.

If we’re engaged in activism, eco-defense, solidarity work, or anything that challenges the power of the government and corporate interests, we must be aware that Eric’s story could easily be our own under the “right” circumstances. For me personally, this has led to a certain paralysis. When I asked him how to combat paranoia and the paralysis it fosters, his very wise answer included a suggestion that we make sure we’re having one on one conversations instead of jumping to conclusions. If there’s a problem, a disagreement, or a misunderstanding, don’t let it fester to the point where suspicions begin to thrive. Problematic people and fucked up behaviors will always be a part of any community, and of course the feds have figured out how to exploit this quite well. The way we respond to the inevitable provocations and infiltrations determines the strength of our communities and our long term effectiveness in the struggle.

Mar31

The Health Impacts of Fracking

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Audio of the Clean Air Council‘s ‘Air & Health Effects of Shale Gas Infrastructure, at the University of Pennsylvania’. This recording features the presentations of Dr. Celia Lewis (Research and Communications Consultant for the Southwest Pennsylvania Environmental Health Project) and Joseph Minott (Clean Air Council Executive Director and Chief Counsel). For video of the full panel, please check the Clean Air Council’s website in the coming days.

From the event description:

Pennsylvania is the second largest natural gas producing state and there is a growing body of evidence to suggest that pollution from this industry can have a serious impact on the health of those who live in the surrounding communities.

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Health Impacts of Fracking.mp3

Click here to learn about the fight against the Mariner 2 pipeline.

Could Philadelphia be the next Houston? The Oil Industry Hopes So

8 Dangerous Side Effects of Fracking That the Industry Doesn’t Want You to Hear About

Sep19

Public Hearing on PES Refinery Permits [audio]

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The Philadelphia Energy Solutions refinery is applying for permits that would allow it to foul our air with even more toxic chemicals and CO2. Air Management Services (AMS) held a public hearing on September 17th where members of the public voiced our concerns about the refinery and Philadelphia’s possible future as [even more of] a sacrifice zone for the fossil fuel industry.

Part I

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Part II

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AMS Public Hearing pt.1 mp3
AMS Public hearing pt.2 mp3

Our city is at a crossroads. Will we continue down the same treacherous path we are on, relying on the antiquated, planet and human health destroying fossil fuel industry? Or will we look to a brighter future and embark on a path of clean, sustainable and just renewable energy? It can be done.

Click here and here for more information on Philadelphia Energy Solutions and the impact of refineries on local communities.

Sep17

A Moral Response to the Pope’s Message

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Audio of the ‘Climate, Jobs, Justice: A Moral Response to the Pope’s Urgent Message’ event hosted by the Philadelphia Friends Center

Part I – Forum

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Part II – Audience questions & comments

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A Moral Response to Pope Francis pt.1 mp3
A Moral Response to Pope Francis pt.2 mp3

From the event’s facebook page:

6:00pm: “A Just Transition” forum with compelling calls to action from community, faith, labor, and health leaders:
-Rabbi Julie Greenberg — Congregation Leyv Ha-Ir–Heart of the City and POWER
-Anthony Giancatarino — Center for Social Inclusion
-Clifton Bennett — Veterans for Clean Air, Sierra Club PA
-Gary Lytle – Sierra Club Pennsylvania
-Susan Saxe — Green Justice Philly
-John Braxton, Co-President Emeritus of Faculty and Staff Federation of Community College of Philadelphia
-Jennifer Hombach – 350 Philadelphia

7:30pm: Inspiring procession from Friends Center through downtown Philadelphia followed by a night vigil at LOVE Park.
-Rev Alison Cornish – PA Interfaith Power and Light
-Sergeant Gerald Brown – Veterans for Clean Air, Sierra Club PA

>>Co-sponsored by:
*350 Philadelphia
*Citizens’ Climate Lobby-Philadelphia Chapter
*Green Justice Philly
*PennEnvironment
*Pennsylvania Interfaith Power & Light – Philadelphia Chapter
*Physicians for Social Responsibility – Philadelphia
*Sierra Club Southeast PA Beyond Coal Campaign
*Shalom Center

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Jul16

Stop Oil Trains!

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Audio from a July 9th community meeting at the Kingsessing Recreational Center on the dangers of oil trains. The main presentation was given by a member of the Delaware Riverkeeper Network.
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From the facebook event page:

Come learn how the 19143 area could be affected by an oil train disaster, and talk about what we can do to protect our community and others across the city. Every day, dangerous mile-long trains bring explosive oil through Kingsessing on their way to the refinery in South Philly. They release toxic pollution into the air, and there is a constant risk of accidents and explosions.

Come to the auditorium at Kingsessing Rec Center for a conversation about the dangers that these trains present and about ways to take action!

An event a part of the national Stop Oil Trains Week Of Action!

For any additional information please contact Jeremy R Griffin by email: dygriff95@yahoo.com

Could this happen here in Philly?

Jul28

Interview With a Doula

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Natural Child-birthing From a Radical Perspective

It would not be an exaggeration to say that in general our culture is an extremely morbid one, overly obsessed with death, violence and the macabre. Even in the radical community we often fail to spend enough time celebrating life; we also fall well short of paying sufficient attention to what is needed to promote and sustain both life itself and a good quality of life.

As our twitter, instagram and facebook newsfeeds fill up with images of ethnic cleansing, brutalized children and widespread devastation, we can find ourselves slipping into either apathy or despair. This is why I am very happy to present this podcast with our guest Iresha Picot. We talk about her life-affirming work as a doula, what it means and how very important such work is in countering the dehumanizing influence of the medical-industrial establishment.

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Interview With a Doula mp3

If you would like more information, or if you would like to inquire about retaining Iresha as a doula you can contact her at Iresha.Picot@gmail.com

Visit Maternity Care Coalition for more info on general maternity care and related resources.

Jan07

Conquer the Cold & Flu Season

The cold and flu season is here once again with this year shaping up to be a pretty rough one compared to previous years. Use the information in this post to minimize the length of an illness or avoid it altogether.

A traditional Western diet is (surprise!) not compatible with good health. A diet over saturated with white bread, meat, alcohol and sugar will inevitably lead to a rarely talked about problem: unbalanced pH levels and eventual acidosis. A proper pH balance is crucial to maintaining good health; when too much acid is present within our bodies we become more vulnerable to viruses and bacteria. Excess acids in the body need to be neutralized and this takes up precious energy the body could be using to maintain itself at optimal levels. When the body is acidic it uses calcium, sodium, potassium, magnesium and other minerals to neutralize the acid and remove it from the body; if an acidic environment persists for a prolonged period of time this essentially means that our body’s minerals are perpetually diverted from other important functions. Here’s a list of some problems we will eventually encounter when we have an overly acidic pH:

– Cardiovascular damage, including the constriction of blood vessels and the reduction of oxygen.
– Weight gain, obesity and diabetes.
– Bladder and kidney conditions, including kidney stones.
– Immune deficiency.
– Acceleration of free radical damage, possibly contributing to cancerous mutations.
– Hormone concerns.
– Premature aging.
– Osteoporosis; weak, brittle bones, hip fractures and bone spurs.
– Joint pain, aching muscles and lactic acid buildup.
– Low energy and chronic fatigue.
– Slow digestion and elimination.
– Yeast/fungal overgrowth.

Here’s a chart of acidic vs alkaline foods to help illustrate how we can achieve a proper balance:

Acid-Alkaline Chart
(click to view full size)

As we can see, some of the most popular foods and drinks in the Western diet are also the most acidic. If your goal is to avoid the cold and flu, or shorten their duration, it would be a good idea to minimize the amount of acidic food in your diet and increase the alkaline foods. For those like myself who are on a budget this is probably one of the best options. Organic foods, supplements and other health products can be expensive, but we can get closer to optimum health by simply cutting out some foods from our diet and adding in others.

Phil of Good Mind Seeds has some advice for those looking to fight off the bugs and germs of winter:

Slowly chew raw garlic to coat the throat with its juices. Saltwater gargle after eating and drinking to keep any food and bacteria away from your throat. Wild black cherry bark is good for the throat – keeps it clean and free of bacterial mucus. Drink tons of fluids but make sure you keep up your electrolytes with a onion garlic broth with salt. Oregano, thyme and sage in the broth will serve to kill a wider range of pathogens in your throat and also decrease inflammation in the sinus and lungs. Small nibbles of cedar leaves stop coughing but too much will cause kidney stones. if you have access to an herb store i recommend astragalus for the immune system. You can also take osha for cough, and elderberry for immune too. Licorice root will help check any infection in the lungs along with the osha but if the cough persists with those you might want to consider going to a doctor eventually. After 2 weeks of a persistent cough i will go to a doc to prevent pneumonia.

My own cold/flu remedy involves trying not to get it in the first place, but of course this is not always possible. I’ve started using raw honey and bee pollen with organic cinnamon taken twice a day with a glass of warm water to help ward off germs. I’ve also recently decided to dramatically reduce my wheat and sugar intake and essentially eliminate alcohol from my diet (though this can be very hard to do at social functions). Creating an internal environment that’s conducive to good health is key; this way even if you do get sick you’ll be able to bounce back relatively quickly. Also keep in mind that taking herbal supplements and vitamins is pointless when your body has an overly acidic pH because then they cannot be absorbed – a balanced pH level is a necessity for good health!

For those who live in or near Philadelphia I would suggest checking out Fair Food Farmstand and the Herbiary, both located inside the Reading Terminal Market. There you can find organic foods and supplements at reasonable prices; Fair Food Farmstand even accepts EBT and offers a “double dollars” service for low income people, giving us more much needed access to healthy, organic foods.

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At the Herbiary

So good luck to you all! Go forth and conquer this year’s flu season!