Demoting Our Ecological Tyranny by Local Jurisdictional Dominance: Recent Examples
Echoing the previous post on local watershed jurisdictions and how they are connected to achieving sustainability and democracy is how another feature of local jurisdictional dominance in court decisions and resource use is how it creates a durable local political feedback against degradative ecological tyrannies of state politics and can preserve biodiversity politically as well (noted in another previous post).
Here is a short film about the expansion of local jurisdictional power in Namibia, Africa as the country sees its first political stability, finances for education and livelihood--combined with wildlife protection--in its 50 year postcolonial history.
Community Sponsored Conservation is the Financial Infrastructure in Namibia: John Kasaona: How poachers became caretakers, and created a sustainable developmental, financial, and consumptive framework
Another example of local community jurisdictions getting stronger and facilitating ecological restoration comes from Indonesia:
John Kasaona is assistant director for the Integrated Rural Development and Nature Conservation (IRDNC), Kasaona works on ways to improve the lives of rural people in Namibia by involving them in the management of the lands they live on -- and the species that live there with them.
In his home of Namibia, John Kasaona is working on an innovative way to protect endangered animal species: giving nearby villagers (including former poachers) responsibility for caring for the animals [and the local environment instead of turning jurisdiction over to a distant, corruptible gatekept state of ecological tyranny like in Ecuador]. And it's working.
Kasanoa's Community-Based Natural Resource Management (CBNRM) program helps rural villages set up communal conservancies, which manage and use local natural resources in a sustainable manner. Essentially, it's about restoring the balance of land and people to that of pre-colonial times, and allowing the people with the most interest in the survival of their environment to have control of it. His work was featured in the recent film Milking the Rhino.
"Our attitude is important. If we pretend to be concerned and helpful but still see the community next to a conservation area as a threat, conservation won't work."--John Kasanoa
Willie Smits restores a rainforest
By piecing together a complex ecological puzzle, [a] biologist [forced to become a local community developer to preserve the environment] Willie Smits has found a way to re-grow clearcut rainforest in Borneo, saving local orangutans and local communities -- and creating a thrilling blueprint for restoring fragile ecosystems.The same recovery of local jurisdictional dominance in material decisions can occur in more 'developed' areas that have historically been more core to the ecological tyrannies of the current extensive global system encouraging environmental degradation. It seems 'core' areas are finding their ecological voice once more.
These areas require it just as much, to defend themselves against the ecological tyranny. For instance:
In the ongoing BP oil disaster, areas in the United States are rejecting the mismanagement of an uncaring federal government in league with BP polluters--instead of linked to local people in particular environments. Local people are taking back their 'natural jurisdiction' over their local ecologies and over their politics by challenging the claims of a corrupt state that maintains their ecological destruction.
For example, there is the Governor of Louisiana as well as the Plaquemines Parish President (in deep coastal Louisiana at the mouth of the Mississippi River). These were some of the first places to experience the oil hitting land from the portion of this oil disaster on the surface waters. Both complain that the so called organization of response is keeping them from saving their areas and failed to protect them in the first place--as it spent more time policing to keep people from responding than actually responding.
The Coast Guard stopped Louisiana Governor Jindal from cleaning up oil as well as earlier challenged his desire to protect the coast of his state with sand berms as BP was doing nothing. Governor Jindal's independent response without the federal government is illegal, though he is doing it anyway because the federal jurisdictions are unwilling to help--and only willing to claim policing jurisdiction.
The mayor of Grand Isle, LA asked for clean up technology and booms--and was refused aid by BP and the Coast Guard. Thus, local elected leaders declared an open challenge to the federal government, paraphrasing 'go ahead & and try to arrest us for protecting ourselves while you fail to do so.'
Being unwilling to help while claiming jurisdiction over someone and trying to stop them protecting themselves is the recipe for an ecological tyranny.
Other areas see the federal corruption associated with protecting environmental degradation of their areas and keeping them from living in a cleaner environment:
Alabama Governor Riley blasts the so called federal 'oil spill response leadership,' and he as well wants a more decentralized response like the Lousiana Governor Jindal wants. So has Florida Governor Crist.
Palm Beach County, Florida mistrusts a BP-compromised Coast Guard and Florida state. It independently (in federal eyes, 'illegally') started own oil oil disaster protection against BP/US's mismanagement.
Other areas of Florida beg for assistance and receive zero help like the oil washing up on shore at Destin Pass or heavy tar balls on Santa Rosa Beach, Florida from June 18, without any BP or Coast Guard clean up despite repeated calls for several days.
Snorklers at Panama City were shocked 'their' government (they thought) would warn them of oil contamination, and they learned otherwise that it was hardly their government anymore. Authorities refuses protect in Panama City. Florida snorkelers were "covered in crude oil", though officials failed to issue warning.
This is why the Florida Keys is (once more in the eyes of a corrupt government, 'illegally'--I would say 'naturally') organizing itself to fight both the oil disaster and claims of federal jurisdiction or of criminally negligent BP corporation over them. Both are doing little to help, and the little help they do is more harmful.
In the Florida Keys, residents are planing their own oil cleanup without the federal government ('illegally' in the eyes of the federal government that has given criminal BP jurisdiction over them). Dan Robey of KeysSpill.com gathered 4,000 volunteers with 300 boat captains, who offered to help before and after potential arrival of oil. Patrick Rice, the dean of marine science and technology at Florida Keys Community College said: "we will not allow inept responses...to happen here."
However the "problem" (sic) with plans for grass-roots activism is federal inept responses are the only ones the U.S. wants, as BP (Deepwater Horizon's Unified Command, run by BP with Coast Guard and others) "has so far insisted on complete [monopolized, mismanaged] control of the cleanup operations."
As the BP spokesman told the Key's volunteers to register with BP leadership, the Key's leadership shot back that this is foolish because "according to BP's numbers, only a third of 7,200 boats 'under contract' to BP are in active service."
Moreover, Robey said they started this independent organization of Florida Keys' captains to protect themselves since they were unable to register with BP. Robey said BP is a "total joke" because they called BP for over a month to register. No one at BP returned their phone calls.
Plaquemines Parish Pres. Nungesser said while visiting Louisiana, Obama "chewed me out" for hurting the President's projected fake 'image' of credibility with facts on the ground. What was he saying? Just the truth as experienced by Floridians in the Keys, that BP refuses to deploy all the people it claims to be 'organizing' for cleanup. The frustrated Plaquemines Parish Pres. Nungesser lashed out: there is "no leadership" and "they let it happen" (4:34 min.) CNN reports the same. Parish Pres. Nungesser said fisherman 'hired' by BP are left unorganized with no calls." "Shame on you BP," he says.
In late June, U.S. Rep. Gene Taylor, flying over the oil and viewing BP's non-response, got off his oil-disaster tour flight angry. "It’s criminal what’s going on out there [in Mississippi],"; "This doesn’t have to happen." More than 60 days after the disaster started, he saw no skimmers as oil was going into Mississippi State water. Confirming this was "a scientist onboard, Mike Carron of Northern Gulf Institute, [who] said without skimming, there will be oil" on Mississippi beaches of the mainland shortly. "There’s oil in the Sound and there was no skimming," Carron said. "No coordinated effort." Rep. Taylor said as well: "I'm having a Katrina flashback. I haven't seen this much stupidity, wasted effort, money and wasted resources, since then." The U.S. Representative was shocked and "concerned Coast Guard Cmdr. Jason Merriweather, assigned to Mississippi, doesn’t have the authority to act independently."
However, as this ecological tyranny expands in the United States, the federal government seems both to be banning local self-organizing aid and banning local states from responding--and by doing so encouraging 'disaster justifications' for a national military and an international military 'invasion of help'. Tyranny is always justified with disasters and crises, so tyrants love to encourage their destabilizing creation.
As it bans local response, the Department of Defense approved 17,500 National Guard troops from other states to travel to the Gulf States. It does this while refusing to allow Governors the right to use their own state guard for the same thing.
Furthermore, international troops are being considered by the U.S. to be brought into the Gulf states to police people. Ban local states from responding, while federal gov't troops consider teaming with international troops/workers, policing the USA in an oil disaster?
Currently, the Department of Defense says, other countries' militaries under consideration for being let into the United States during this 'non-response exacerbated disaster' include: Canada, Mexico, Britain, Croatia, France, Germany, Ireland, Netherlands, Norway, Romania, S.Korea, Spain, and Sweden. Even United Nations teams want into the Gulf states.
(The same foreign response was allowed to occur in Hurricane Katrina in 2005. Bush let in foreign military teams into the United States--from Mexico, Canada, the Netherlands, Germany and Russia into the Gulf States with their technical aid groups, while demoting or stopping local response. Unbelievable, you say? You are simply kept ignorant of what this ecological tyranny has been doing. Go look at the pictures they posted proudly on U.S.'s NORTHCOM's website. Go look.)
So, we have an ecological tyranny waiting for disasters to act to justify itself--disasters that it socially created and let happen by poor regulation administration in the first place. Why would you think that THAT kind of government will help you, when it just harmed you?
While hypocritically parading the "Jones Act" to keep out '25 foreign registered oil skimmer ships'--really owned by a Dallas, Texas banker and merely registered overseas though in the Gulf and already fitted for oil skimming ("no returned calls" he says from Coast Guard or BP), the U.S. ignores other constitutional bases and invites foreign military into U.S. coastal waters. The tyrants running the U.S. wait until a day before Hurricane Alex to bring international military into the Gulf--when it could have invited them in earlier for oil disaster prevention if prevention was their goal. It could have done this over a month ago if prevention of disaster, instead of capitalizing on disaster, was the U.S.'s goal. I am skeptical 'help' was their goal if they wait to 'invite' foreign military until extensive contamination makes clean-up superfluous and a hurricane is already in the Gulf as well. Remember when you were taught that 'inviting a foreign military' into your country (while stopping your own citizens from defending themselves) was the height of treason and tyranny? Well, it still is.
"US accepts international assistance for Gulf spill"
US [only] accepts international assistance in dealing with massive oil spill in Gulf of Mexico [and represses aid from its own States and citizens]
On Tuesday June 29, 2010, 6:43 pm EDT
WASHINGTON (AP) -- The United States is accepting help from 12 countries and international organizations in dealing with the massive oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico.
The State Department said in a statement Tuesday [June 29] that the U.S. is working out the particulars of the help that's been accepted.
The identities of all 12 countries and international organizations were not immediately announced. One country was cited in the State Department statement -- Japan, which is providing two high-speed skimmers and fire containment boom. [While the U.S. tyrant neglects to 'invite' 25 oil skimming ships moored in Texas and unused.]
More than 30 countries and international organizations have offered to help with the spill. The State Department hasn't indicated why some offers have been accepted and others have not."
Instead of only via material pollutions and their protected creation, an ecological tyranny expresses itself in propaganda. It studiously ignores and edits out its own damages. It represses people from talking about its self-created and self-protected damages.
For example, the BP brainwashing department attempts to dominate independent information. BP bought the top Google search result for 'oil spill'. Second, BP ordered its cleanup workers to destroy evidence and to be blind to what they see, and to stop documentation of dead animals and sea life as they clean up.
A BP contract worker said BP told them to avoid taking pictures, and to avoid helping dying/dead animals. The worker said BP knows ocean will destroy the evidence of its crimes.
(Others note this as well, since BP is incinerating endangered live turtles in oil (3:14, video) to destroy the evidence out at sea, interfering with turtle rescues called off because of BP thuggish interference.)
However, one BP worker rejected being a BP propaganda tool. He talked to the media, leading them on a tour of the devastation: "When we found this dolphin filled with oil, oil was just pouring out of it. Saddest darn thing to look at."
More ecological tyranny on the ideological level is how media is curtailed by a degradative, corrupt state protecting its ongoing destruction. Within hours of the now famous oil disaster fly-over video (5:38) by Riverkeeper Alliance member John Wathen on May 7, the FAA imposed a no-fly zone ("no media zone") over much of the Gulf spill area. (FEMA has that tyrannical power as well: to ban local media coverage.)
And Obama lied to the world (what's news about that?) in his speech addressing the oil disaster, by saying "we’re years off and some technological breakthroughs away from being able to operate on purely a clean-energy grid." Totally false. He's lying because his lips are moving.
Additionally, for positive formal institutional news toward recovering a local jurisdictional dominance--taking it away from an ecological tyranny--the Florida Supreme Court a few days ago gave rights to Floridians to sue for destruction of public property instead of only for destruction of their private property.
This is an encouragement for similar collective, democratic, local environmental jurisdictional sovereignty against placeless, external destruction via an formal ecological tyranny that groups like BP take advantage of or other corporations that destroy more capital than they produce:
Florida Supreme Court says tourism and sea-related companies can sue polluters of public waters instead of only sue for damage to private property:
Floridians & Gulf Oil Spill
ABC Channel 20 WCJB
North Central Florida
Jun 18th 2010
"A Florida Supreme Court ruling Thursday [6-17-2010] may have significant implications for future legal action against BP.
The Court overturned a ruling by the 2nd District Court of Appeals, by saying that commercial fishermen in Hillsborough County can sue and recover damages from a fertilizer company that polluted the public waters they fish, even though the anglers have no ownership rights in those waters....
Floridians that argue the spill, though in public waters, affects livelihoods such as fishing, tourism, and other sea-related commerce, will have the state’s backing in those claims against BP."
And here is a video of the malfeasance of state ecological tyrannies federally in the USA, where federal officials have the rights to stop local protection pressures or clean-up. This is an intentionally gatekept form of non-action that endangers our health, ecologies, and economies.
Tar balls ashore on the beaches of Seaside, FL, 6-19-2010 as US and Florida without much care for the people or environment
Oil reaches the beaches of 'planned community' Seaside, Florida on June 16, 2010. Though authorities would rather it was ignored than solve the issue. Coast Guard actively refusing to shut down the beach, and "waiting for BP" to tell them what to do. What about the kids with carcinogenic oil on their bodies? Well, they gave them some paper towels. Beach remained open.