This website was borne of a frustration that our world is headed in the wrong direction, with a belief that a new approach might possibly bridge our political divide to address intractable problems: excessive incarceration rates, income disparities, healthcare in chaos, communities under attack from guns and drugs, and environmental decline that threatens a stable future.
Political gridlock tragically ignores growing problems, yet a command-and-control response won’t work in a free society. Rules and regulations criminalize a working economy, and our lock ’em up mentality is fundamentally contrary to our great social experiment of a free and democratic society.
In the following pages, I outline solutions that protect freedoms within our constitutional framework. Proposals require accountability by means of fiscal responsibility, enlisting peer pressure to ensure both “liberty and justice.” I begin with social justice, with respect for fellow Americans.
Page 1: The “Jury of Peers” essay is the exact copy of a handbill I handed out at the entrance to a county courthouse, with considerable effect forcing prosecutors to double the jury pool. It’s a powerful tool – I suggest a coalition of activists carefully consider reasonable reforms in a coordinated campaign to expedite changes in the criminal justice system. If frustrated citizens are in need of an outlet, know that “juror (pool) education, including handing out informational materials outside courthouses, is protected by the First Amendment” (Paul Butler, Let’s Get Free, p. 76). Please do not leaflet actual jurors or specific cases.
Page 2: I explain the reasons for peaceful resistance to civil rights abuses to our own citizens.
Page 3: The “Policing Reform” page offers a proposal that could save lives of both the public and the police.
Page 4: The “tipping point” of invasive plants taking over our forests is a compelling reason for tax reform, starting with property tax breaks that incentivize stewardship. I also suggest encouraging housing density to reduce homelessness, and to motivate emergency preparedness – all natural and national security issues. In the words of the Sightline Institute, this appeal is for a “tax shift, off our backs and on our side.” It takes “taxation without representation” one logical step forward – I call it “source taxes,” linking cause and effect, as opposed to “ticky taxes” which fail at addressing the source of the problem.
Page 5: “Fare Enforcement and Riders’ Rights” outlines compelling reasons to rethink Sound Transit 3, a piecemeal approach paid with flawed taxation, that does too little, too late to keep our economy flowing.
2nd Blog post: “Donate your Diet to Science” suggests a revenue source and fundamental foundation for healthcare reform.
This blog is a response to reactionary populism. The proposals share fundamental concepts: free will, personal and peer accountability, respect for science-based statistics, and faith that competition within Responsible Market Economics (full-cost accounting) can have a better environmental outcome than command-and-control mandates/standards/targets and regulations.
At its core, the root problem of social injustice and environmental degradation is the same: the “plunder not just the bodies of humans but the body of the Earth itself (author Ta-Nehisi Coates).” It is the core unwillingness to accept responsibility, the unwillingness to pull our weight and pay as we go, the unwillingness to compensate for damage done to others from our choices.