"There's not a Red America, or a Blue America, there's the UNITED STATES OF AMERICA." ---Barack Obama, 2004

Saturday, December 20, 2008

Another hero rises up: Tim DeChristopher

This article from the Daily Kos was brought to my attention by my helpful assistant...we need more people like this to rise up and monkey wrench the system over the next month to combat these eco-saboteurs.

Remember This Name: Tim DeChristopher Hotlist

Sat Dec 20, 2008 at 09:58:12 AM PST

Per UTVoter's excellent diary, "Holiday oil and gas sale & civil disobedience" and the Salt Lake Trib article, "Impostor disrupts lands bid: Civil disobedience » U. student drives up bids, may face charges", Tim DeChristopher is a hero.

Tim DeChristopher, 27, faces possible federal charges after winning bids totaling about $1.8 million on more than 10 lease parcels that he admits he has neither the intention nor the money to buy -- and he's not sorry.

"I decided I could be much more effective by an act of civil disobedience," he said during an impromptu streetside news conference during an afternoon blizzard. "There comes a time to take a stand."

The Sugar House resident -- questioned and released after disrupting a U.S. Bureau of Land Management lease auction of 149,000 acres of public land in scenic southern and eastern Utah -- said he came to the BLM's state office in Salt Lake City to join about 200 other activists in a peaceful protest outside the building Friday morning. But then he registered with the BLM as representing himself and went to the auction room.

I would love to post the SL Trib's photo of Tim DeChristopher right here. If someone could post it in a diary, that would help bring this important person to the prominence he deserves.

Effective Action

Not only did he disrupt oil and gas lease sales, DeChristopher provided an important and effective example of modern civil disobedience. He came up with a creative, effective, pragmatic solution--one that would not disrupt, inconvenience or anger the general public on whose behalf he was acting--and then summoned the courage to act on it.

Legal Consequences

David Thoreau would be proud.

In addition to disrupting the sales AND providing a good example of civil disobedience, DeChristopher's may have a legal consequence, which is in fact a customary feature and one of the points of civil disobedience: to demonstrate against law of a state that would allow a particular injustice to take place.

Most acts of civil disobedience lead to a night or a few in jail. In DeChristopher's case, as the Trib article notes, the federal charges may lead to larger penalties. Only time and the courts will tell what the outcome might be. No matter what, however, the risk Tim DeChristopher took on behalf the current and future general public for having "monkey-wrenched a federal oil- and gas-lease sale Friday" was substantial, calculated and taken.


We owe Tim DeChristopher a great debt of gratitude.

  1. As we follow this story, we should consider and act to raise funds, as necessary, for the following expenses, if any:
* legal defense leading up to and during the trial, * legal defense during his prison stay * fines * loss of income (if any)

Whether or not these funds are needed, IMHO, he deserves a financial demonstration of gratitude, to him or in his name.

  1. This event is also worthy on many levels of a documentary:
* To expose the Bush administration's 11th effort to enable private entities to plunder public lands and wreak environmental havoc pursuing more carbon-based fuel. * To document the sale event itself: the preface, including public outcry, including voices such as Robert Redford's and Terry Tempest Williams; the event, including footage of the protest at the location, and a review of the transactions and DeChristopher's involvement; the aftermath, in terms of what happens to DeChristopher and the parcels he impacted with his action, what happens to the other parcels, and what happends to DeChristopher. * To shine a light on modern civil disobedience. This country is in definite of information and educaton; i.e., voting is not the only responsibility or answer. Direct action and civil disobedience also have had, have and should continue to have important roles in civic involvement.

I will be contacting the following and encourage you to do the same:

Geralyn Dreyfus, Executive Director, Salt Lake Film Center
Sundance Film Institute
Robert Redford
Marshall Thompson, "A Soldier's Peace"

I urge you to contact anyone/everyone you know who could help make a documentary happen.

  1. It might also be worth considering raising money over time to one day acquire a plot of land near Arches and put up a small monument commemorating and expressing gratitude for his act. This may sound over the top, but raising awareness for and inspiring direct action and civil disobedience is no trivial matter, especially with so many significant problems weighing on us. We need activists to spur and accelerate progress.

Thanks you, Tim DeChristopher.

Tags: Tim DeChrisdtopher, Civil Disobedience, Direct Action, Utah, Salt lake City, Arches, Canyonlands, Nine Mile Canyon, Federal charges, Federal gas and oil lease sale, fundraising (all tags) :: Previous Tag Versions

Monday, December 15, 2008

Bush's Boot Camp

Check out this new video game for some shoe flickin' fun! You try to shoot the shoes as they're being hurled at the President.

Sunday, December 14, 2008

It's "SHOETIME," baby!!!

Applause! Applause! What a wonderful performance! Encore! Encore!

Monday, December 8, 2008

If it reeks of EVIL, and acts EVIL, then it must be...EVIL?!?!

Ahhhh, so THAT'S what he's been up to, apparently, in recent weeks since the economy tanked?

It turns out Dubya has a "legacy team" together, bec
ause rumor has it that it needs some assistance.

Just a hunch.

What a sad joke. This team can try to churn out whatever hocus pocus crap that it wants, but the American people -
and the world, for that matter - aren't stupid.

Bush's "legacy," if you even want to call it that, will be fodder thrown to the wolves...and if you beg to differ, consider this:
the former Presidents that have always been the brunt of the biggest jokes, before Nixon at least (who had positive attributes, but still abused his power), have been Herbert Hoover and James Buchanan. Come on...remember your grandparents stories about "Hoovervilles" during the Great Depression? There ya are.

Bush's failures eclipses all th
ree of the aforementioned leaders, IMO.

Nixon, from my vantage, was simply a tortured soul who thought the Presidency was untouchable. He thought he could get away with anything, and was proven wrong as he was forced to resign over Watergate. He was an extremely insecure man who generally didn't like people and was out of touch as President. He would have fared much better as a college professor.

Nevertheless, Nixon still performed some tasks that are commendable, such as ending Vietnam (after waging a secret campaign in Cambodia, of course), signing into effect environmental legislation, and his foreign relations abilities were amazing -- as evidenced by how he handled China -- and are the standard by which all who follow him are measured...and despite it all I still do an impeccable impression of him, as he's the former President that entertains me the most.

Hoover, FDR's predecessor, sat like a deer in the headlights while the Nation slid deeper into the Great Depression...he was ill-equipped to handle the crisis, and stood in a mental prison of the cowardly ideology that "it will all work itself out," as Bush has essentially done today.

The only thing I will say, in his defense, is that this President was dealing with a situation that had no precedent...yes, I intentionally typed that so I could write President and precedent in the same sentence (yuck yuck yuck).

Buchanan, Abraham Lincoln's predecessor, sat idly by without any effort to intervene while the Civil War began...and while it can be argued that he didn't start that war per se, and that the issues of slavery and the related economics had grown into a bubble about to burst, he certainly didn't help matters by either doing nothing or fanning the flames as 1861 approached and the nation unraveled -- literally -- as southern states seceded and the war began leading right up to Lincoln's inauguration.

That being said, and despite having the lessons of history at his disposal, somehow Bush has managed to channel the legacies of Buchanan, Hoover AND Nixon at the same time, and in some ways SURPASSED their failures.

My first reaction would be to think "Isn't that pretty hard to do?" Maybe not...not if you have no tendency to see yourself and your decisions in retrospect, as that obviously seems to be a trait that Bush lacks.

Nevertheless, it is what it is...the economic collapse and Bush's policies speak for themselves...and while Iraq has not been a civil war fought within our borders -- in which Americans have bloodied each other up -- thousands of Americans, and untold numbers of Iraqui civilians, have still died. George W. Bush has lots of blood on his hands.

In addition, Bush has presided over the turbulence of this first 21st century decade thus far, and only fanned the flames of the deepest divisions in the nation since the 1860s...but the gravity of the American Civil War is made up by the fact that Bush ignited the Iraq War all himself, through mass deception, with some advisement from his cronies. Sure, blame Cheney, Rumsfeld and Rove too...they share it...but the buck stopped with Dubya.

Then, when he's not deceiving the planet, he spends his time thumbing his nose at everyone who disagrees with him or "dares to question him." No remorse, no willingness to listen...only arrogance...just intoxicated with power.

If that's not evil, I don't know what is.

So I rest my case. Bush's horrible legacy will be the "new low" in terms of the low bar set for Presidents of the future...and he'll be the brunt of jokes for generations to come...that's just how it works.

I don't believe he's in denial of these emerging facts, as a team designated for the task of "rewriting history" would seem to indicate...and if arrogance wasn't bad enough, he's making every effort to go out with a middle finger to the American public by selling our environment down the river to mining interests, and appointing new public officials who seemingly can't be fired...intentionally making things that much more difficult for the new Obama Administration.

So...as far as that new Bush library goes?

I can't wait to relieve myself in a few years when I visit Texas...I'll be sure to drink lots of water and have oat bran for breakfast before I stop by.

And as far as the Bush team's efforts to try to "rewrite history?"

Uh, good luck with that.