A Facebook page is being created to share the tools principles techniques of this trade.
The elderly senior engineer said it could not, should not, be built, 17 Mos ago. And maybe he was right. But my blood boils with such naysayers. And I have defied these my entire adult life. That vehicle shouldn't be built, it defies the laws of physics, the engineer said 17 months ago. Khanh Dam's Sol has just arrived on the West Coast. Maybe I'm cheating in declaring Victory two days early but that's what I'm doing. It is too dangerous, the engineer said. Dangerous to whom? The pickup trucks or semis? I wouldn't make a dent. Too dangerous to the rider? Half a dozen times on a traditional bicycle, I would have been dead. So inconsiderate. No, I am extremely considerate, piercing lights front and back out of courtesy to drivers, carefully choosing my route and time of travel to avoid interfering with others, so that they would not be surprised. Pulling off every 0.2 mile if necessary to avoid people being behind and almost never that's the case. 10 honks of encouragement, maybe fifty, for every honk of anger. And I suppose this 70 year old stage 4 cancer survivor has defied the laws of physics as well. Is any of this important? I don't know. I just think when we're called to do something constructive we should not give up prematurely. Certainly not to be discouraged by the pitiful naysayers. And certainly not to do it to spite them, they are so pitiful, so not worth the effort. But not to be discouraged. Oh, and well over 99% of this journey was done on renewable energy, the solar array. And traveling across the country was never the mission. Attempting to stir the occasional Soul that still has any life left in it, with the example and the words of the man Jesus about how we might live as brothers and sisters to one another, that was and Remains the goal. And probably thousands of souls have been stirred by what their eyes saw and occasionally by the conversation they initiated in a parking lot or on the side of a road when they asked me to stop. Pitiful on my part, several Advanced degrees, lifelong learning and expertise. But better than anything else I can think to do. And joyful for me. Making otherwise unbearable life, bearable for me, this hell that we have created for our children and grandchildren. PS. In four years, just over 45,000 miles, today was the best day of cycling ever. Millennium Falcon, move over.
If I am not shocking, foreign, to most in this world, though that is never my intent, then I am of vastly too little hope for the world.
Standing Rock update : the extreme darkness is lifting. My experience of this camp, and I think I was not alone, is that weeks ago , 10 days ago, tremendous Darkness had descended upon the camp. 10000 Souls, many of them very brightly burning spiritual Jedi, Departed and this was appropriate as the legal battle was initially won. Yet, tho appropriate, this departure of so many bright lights introduced a tremendous stress on the camp. Those Bright Lights many of them did tremendous amounts of work everyday to feed, heat, provide water for, construct for the others in the camp. That Workforce Departed. What was left for a while was a fairly corrupt power structure. Again, probably I was more acutely aware than most but I am not the only one that was aware. Slowly I learned the lesson to stop attempting to help by coming alongside those in power, and instead to avoid at all costs those with ego issues and to seek out the more lowly who were of good spirit and providing some level of help, and to see how I could support them. Surely my days are infinitely more joyful now, I am more productive personally, and those good souls and I are undoubtedly feeding and amplifying and encouraging one another. Decades ago I brought to one of the largest computer companies in the world a training system for salespeople the heart of which was the idea of not seeking those in official power but rather to seek those more lowly who were hugely influential but not of official power. Finally I am again avoiding that mistake. There are beautiful souls here that move me with great emotion. The young indigenous man from Florida who is here in the camp awaiting his trial 4 unviolently standing against theft of Native American land and resources and the destruction of their water. A beautiful soul. Earlier in his life he told me involved with a gang. Clearly saved now spiritually in part due to being introduced to Serious Sign Language in prison and now doing coursework to become an interpreter. his profound love and admiration for those without the gift of speech is very very deep and genuine. He must have a record. So the risk, the huge costs that this young person faces to fight for the future of us all must be enormous. But his spirit is so totally selfless, so light. A young mom who runs a kitchen, 1 of 8 or more in the camp, and probably my favorite. 2 absolutely adorable Kids approximately 3 and 5 years old. With her in the kitchen every moment. Infinite patience for them and us has this young woman. cooking simple healthy meals for us from 7 in the morning until 8 o'clock at night. College students, people normally employed in everyday life , who have in the face of existential species emergency, existential emergency for all creation, have said goodbye to their normal lives and work from sunup till sundown to help those in need in this community. The Dark Souls remain. I have removed myself from much ongoing visibility to their activities. but I have a hunch that this unofficial tribe of good Souls is growing in strength and number and thereby in some cases converting and in other cases obscuring these points of Darkness that were so strong only 10 days ago. And I know that my sun up till bedtime menial manual pitiful weak labor is one of those candles encouraging others. I get thanks and feedback every day. Recently I saw one of the folks who exhibited considerable darkness of Soul only 10 days ago or so, saw me on my daily rounds spanning the camp serving those in greatest need, asked if we could talk, said, I appologize. We exchanged glad hugs. Daily I repeat and will repeat again here my favorite quotation, a quotation from Albert Schweitzer , example is not the major thing in influencing people, it's the only thing. we had our first serious Storm 2 days ago, 10 inches of snow, 40 mile-an-hour sustained winds, 10 degrees Fahrenheit, minus 40 degrees wind chill , gusts exceeding 60 miles an hour. clearly I have no conception of the strength of tents. How mine and hundreds of others survived that wind is beyond me. I suspect that this storm will be viewed as very very gentle within another month or so. many of our finest Jedi, some very mature, some very immature, are gathered in this space. By the way, since the storm the Verizon signal has not been available down in the camp, only on a small hill in this very cold weather where I currently sit. Hence my access to Internet is greatly curtailed for now. I can't know whether Verizon plans to repair the Tower or whether they have decided it is not worth maintaining it with a camp of only a thousand people.
"You inspire others to do more. We can always do more. I so love you, brother!" I replied: What deeply touching and encouraging words. So very kind. You move me. I do what I do simply because it is where the joy is, serving from the soul in solidarity our neediest sisters and brothers. But it's also the only place that hope is, for any of us to find peace and joy in each moment of the attempt, and collectively as a species in all creation. If I understand anything it is simply that every healthy successful bit of tissue, in any plant or non-human creature, any and every organ, any and every individual member of a species, does this from the instant of its creation until the instant it expires, Devotion to the neediest among it. Except for cancer, the form of existence that we westerners have embraced long ago and is now in the final stages of killing everything, unless one by one we learn to turn in a different direction. This is the entirety of what Gandhi intended when he said, be the change you wish to see in the world. We have no other responsibilities than this. And in exercising this responsibility, Breath by breath, one by one, we become a hope for the future. Each moment that we do not, we contribute to the now all but certain Doom of the future. James
EFLIUS ND: Leading Engineers are now donating their time to the mission. I think that the following is accurate, not too grandiose. The development of the Wright flyer, the original Wright Brothers plane was a major achievement. Also a major achievement was the early pioneers who used the technology. In this I am no expert but my sense is that early Flyers of the mail across the country were the epitome of such pioneers.
Relative to renewable energy travel on land this EFLIUS Voyage, first supported exclusively by me, everything I have, including credit card line of credit, and now with material support from others, is very much that kind of pioneering.
In Washington DC a Bright Young retired dirt bike professional in a small bike chain took substantial political risk to convince his shop and Executives to invest themselves in enhancing this vehicle to my specifications beyond the standard content, making it much more versatile and robust for the unprecedented Journey for this vehicle.
2 days ago catastrophy struck, a critical part that enables the motor to move the vehicle went instantly and totally inoperable. Had it happened 20 miles earlier in the day it would have cost days and possibly many hundreds of dollars to rectify. It was a disaster, and a miracle. A miracle because it happened where it did, a very mountainous region, Wake Forest, with exactly the right Bike Shop in the country , expert in recumbent bikes, knowledgeable in electric bicycles, and with exactly the right owner with a terrific imagination, and heart, and passion for advancing the technology, and mission. He and his staff member worked much of the afternoon at little to no charge to me looking at the vehicle from the perspective of the huge Journey it was about to undertake, with their extreme experience, and tweaking here and there to make the vehicle more ready, and generously training me at the same time. I didn't ask, I didn't beg, I simply explained the mission and the need. And my commitment, and seriousness of purpose, and dignity of mission, are pretty self-evident. And their hearts took over from there. Same with the guy and his team in Washington DC.
As strong as the manufacturer of this vehicle is in terms of design that is how weak they are in terms of execution. It's just a sad fact and also often happens with engineering strong companies. Extremely competent and part of what is required, profoundly incompetent in other areas.
They are unable to hold onto good personnel and sadly that's been the case with this company year after year after year. In late spring their only senior support executive Departed the company. He is Far and Away deleting support engineer on this vehicle in the country and he has backed completely away from the business due to their management incompetence, so sad. The void is crushing. This morning he spent hours on the phone with me working through issues because I have become so expert and I'm pushing the technology so far into the future of where it belongs. And the commitment he sees in me inspires him to be substantially more committed than otherwise he would be. After the hours I asked for his address so I could send remuneration. He just laughed. Call me whenever you need help, he said.
There have been some extremely significant exceptions, but a central story of my adulthood has been a pattern of extremely intense leadership actions in dire human circumstances, attended by at least a small Cadre of excited colleagues only to find that in the midst of battle there was just one person out on the field of battle actually taking the risks, paying the price, fighting, me, alone, colleagues safely and immovably, with all the excuses in the world, on the sidelines.
The theory that I'm operating under explicitly, is one that I have implicitly held Central for my entire adulthood, the need for, and the need from me to be, catalytic change. My sense is that catalytic change is the most dramatic, transformative, powerful available in nature. A miniscule amount of an element is introduced into a system, the right type of element, and the right type of system and the entire Mass transforms almost instantaneously. This notion was Central to Leo Tolstoy’s ideas expressed in his book, the kingdom of God is within you, that was read by Young Gandhi in England that caused Gandhi to totally change the course of his life, 180 degrees. Tolstoy I was that kind of catalyst for Gandhi, and Gandhi became that sort of catalyst for India and the world for a brief period in time.
That I am explicitly pursuing this strategy in no way is a statement that I think I'll succeed. Quite the opposite. Few people in history have succeeded at this although few have tried. But I pursue it of necessity and I think you should consider doing the same. Unless some small element, some minuscule elements, evolve and emerge quickly that cause a massive immediate catalytic Global transformation.... the game's over.
Nobody is serious about stopping global warming, or stopping corporate fascism, that is not approaching near zero in personal consumption and ownership.
Axioms for Organizers by Fred Ross, Sr. 1989
Every Day –
Organizing isn’t a job done once and done with. If organizers don’t renew their efforts every day of their lives, then only the grasping and greedy people remain active.
Doing It “For” People –If you think you can do it for people, you've stopped
understanding what it means to be an organizer.
Lead By Pushing –An organizer is a leader who does not lead but gets behind the people and pushes.
Duty of Organizer – The duty of the organizer is to provide people with the opportunity to work for what they believe in.
Follow-up –90% of organizing is follow-up.
Never Give Up –Good organizers never give up –they get the opposition to do that.
Urgency –A good organizer must be able to charge an issue with a supreme sense of urgency.
“From The Heart”–How can you move others unless you are moved yourself?
Little Things –
If you are able to achieve anything big in life, it’s because you paid attention
to the “little” things.
Half-Assed Job –In any kind of work if you do a half-assed job at least you get some of the work done; in organizing you don’t get anything done.
People –It’s the way people are that counts, not the way you’d like them to be.
Short-Cuts –Short-cuts usually end in detours, which lead to dead ends.
Organizing Is –Organizing is providing people with the opportunity to become aware of their own capabilities and potential.
Hope –To inspire hope, you have to have hope yourself.
Winning Hearts & Minds –to win the hearts and minds of people, forget the dry facts and statistics; tell them the stories that won you to the cause.
Questions –When you are tempted to make a statement, ask a question.
Temporary Organizer – An organizer tries to turn each person she meets into a temporary organizer.
Ask #1 – Don’t tell the people – ask them.
Build New – Don’t try and rebuild a dead organization; start over and build a new one.
Organizing or Manipulating? – If you are moving people to act through truth and for truth, as you understand it, then you are organizing them. If you are moving them to act through deception, then you are manipulating them.
Do It Now #1 – If there is something to be done, do it now.
Do It Now #2 – If you wait until you have all the time, people and resources to go ahead, you may still never get there because you did not fill the interval with the action needed to get you there.
Winning & Losing People – it's easy to win people – and twice as easy to lose them.
Losers – Losers are loaded with alibis.
Maybe – maybe is a double, triple, no.
Messages #1 – Rare is the delivered message.
People Power – People power must be visible.
Reminding – Reminding is the essence of organizing.
Organize – The only way to organize is to organize, not sit around and jaw about it.
Burn-Out – organizers don't burn out. They just give up and cease being organizers.
Presssure – it's not the quantity of pressure we exert that counts, it's the quality.
Willpower #1 – There is no substitute for willpower in an organizer.
Ask #2 – Usually those who can spare a little time for the cause are actually ready to give it all if only someone would ask them.
Concentration – When you are pushing a big drive or issue, you stay on it to the total
exclusion of everything else – until it is done.
Live Wires – when you find, live wires, put them to work immediately. Find something they can do – any little thing – get them ready and starting to do more, or you will lose them for the cause.
All the Way – When you do something – do it all the way!
Leadership – you don't develop leaders. You push people into action by refusing to do it yourself. You are then providing them the opportunity to become aware
of their own capabilities.
Willpower #2 – An organizer has to want to win badly enough to succeed.
Volunteers – Never get so hungry for volunteers that you do their work for them instead of insisting they do it themselves.
Hardest Choice – The hardest choice is usually the correct one.
Vacations – Injustice never takes a vacation.
Monotony – the way to break monotony is with motion and emotion.
Appreciation #1 – Appreciation has an exceedingly short memory so strike while the iron is hot.
Appreciation #2 – People are infinitely more appreciative of what they do for you than what you do for them. (Cesar Chavez)
Respect Yourself – don't let them kick you around. You have to live and organized in such a way that you can respect yourself and be treated with respect by others.
Put People To Work – Don't talk at people – put them to work.
The Disrupter – The disrupter is the lowest form of organizational life.
Be Ready – A good organizer delegates responsibility but is always ready to jump in and do the job himself if necessary. (Saul Alinsky 1947)
Social Arsonist – A good organizer is a social arsonist who goes around setting people on fire.
Messages #2 – There is nothing less likely to be delivered than a message.
Reaching People – if you can't reach people at home during ordinary hours, you've got to go after them during extra-ordinary hours, to the outer edge of your tenacity and forbearance.
Brick By Brick – it isn't too hard to organize if you take it granule by granule, Brick by Brick.
Fast Talkers – Look out for the fast talkers.
Details – The measure of a good organizer is the amount of attention she pays to the most minute details.
Helping People – organizers must grow Beyond helping people too, egging them on.
A Time For Silence – There is a time for sound and a time for silence and a good organizer needs to be able to differentiate between the two.
Finding That Person – to keep an organization alive you've got to find that person who has to do something about it.
The Incidentals – The incidentals make up the fundamentals.
Those of us who are at all enlightened know reflexively, and somewhat practice, that in a personal relationship there is one thing, and one thing only that we can change, me, myself, ourself. We know almost instinctively and reflexively because we have heard it so often, that we cannot, cannot, cannot, change anyone else to achieve the change we want to see in that personal relationship. We can only change our self. But the left, the best intended, the most informed, rarely if ever carry that understanding into an arena where it is not a one on one personal relationship, but probably a situation involving many many many many people. But nothing changes with respect to the fact that the only thing that one can change is one self. I think my moment by moment reaction to the evils, the atrocities, that I spend all day studying around the world, first and foremost in Palestine, one way or another this is my reaction time and time and time again. I am horrified at the otherwise well-intended people that work to make President Obama change, the Republicans change, the deprived and frightened white people in this country change, Netanyahu change, the UN, the oil industry...change. They look to change anyone and everyone except the only person that they are in a position to change, themselves, and of course, that is the last person in the world that they intend to change.
It is the example of others lives that has moved my life back in the direction of sanity, humanity, compassion, empathy, decency... the self into which we are all born. The lives of those like Eleanor Roosevelt, Malala, Teresa of Calcutta, Alice Paul, Dorothy Day, Gandhi, Martin Luther King jr.... It is only then that their words have helped me understand how to accomplish that move. "Example is not the major thing in influencing people. It is the only thing." Albert Schweitzer