The Cage ran at middays on Monday on 4ZZZ for a year. It’s premise was that we lock you in until you answer the question. Every interview began with the statement ‘The Crimes Act of Queensland 1908 dictates that we cannot lock you in for more than eight hours and only four of those hours may be spent under interrogation. Do you understand?” We also randomly fired three questions from our library of placement questions which placed the interview subject in the moral landscape for the listener.
The questions were things like, Do you think abortion should be legalised, do you think climate chaos is caused by human burning of fossil fuels … . The show had an active website, facebook page and twitter feed. The show incorporated the Generator news at the top of the hour, and regular segments from The Cross.
Former Vice President of the United States, Al Gore comes from a wealthy political dynasty and has been a global advocate for action on Climate Change. His film Inconvenient Truth, spawned a global climate movement and an army of climate change speakers who he personally trained.
His latest book and film, An Inconvenient Sequel deals with the diminishing capacity of the political process to engage in rational debate and decision making. It follows on from The Assault on Reason, “a call to rebuild the vitality of American democracy by restoring the nation’s information ecosystem so that we can start making good decisions again”.
US Presidential candidate in the 2000 election, Al Gore lost to George W Bush in a narrowly contested result. After decades as a US Senator and two terms as Bill Clinton’s Vice President he resigned his political positions to found The Climate Reality Project, The Deep Space Climate Observatory and Generation Investment Management.
A book by Ted Nace, Corporate Gangs of America is an account of the direct lobbying from company directors to raise the status of corporations, starting with personhood in the late nineteenth century and culminating in the protection of their profits under so called free-trade agreements.
While reviewers have criticised the book for failing to take into account the positive benefits of corporations it has been widely recognised as well-researched, and factually accurate. The book has a large amount in common with the 2003 Canadian film The Corporation. in both structure and background research. The film does not credit Corporate Gangs of America as an inspiration or source, however.
Ted is a publisher and environmental activist who made his money through publication of technical books in his company Peachpit Press and then his reputation as an activist for his work Corporate Gangs of America.
He has since focused on activism around Coal.
The history of Peachpit Press is well described in the introduction to one of its many publications, Photoshop CS for Windows.
The Cross is a project, centred on social media, that attempts to put religion in context. On one hand it has evolved from our relationship with nature and the search for meaning that developed from a thoughtful examination of that relationship. On the other, it is a tool of power used by the state to manage the populace more effectively than through the force of arms. Religious and military authority have jostled for position at the head of society for time immemorial, across cultures. The Cross is a project that accepts this fundamental reality and discussed contemporary issues around religion in that context.
It was specifically created to isolate the anti-theists and distinguish its arguments from their simplistic stance. Their position can be characterised as “religion is foolish because it is illogical” or “religion is bad because it is hypocritical”. The Cross assumes that both of these statements are self-evident and significant but have no bearing on the relevance or role of religion in society.
Founder of the Ebono Institute, Giovanni Ebono, is the nom-de-plum of Geoff Ebbs.
He was formed as a comic, working the club circuit in Byron Bay and the NSW Northern Rivers. In the tradition of Bob Dylan, David Bowie, Mark Twain or Lewis Carroll, the character became more famous than the originator, and took on a life of his own.
Giovanni had his own radio show, comedy circuit and theatre following before I decided to legitimise him through a legal name change and run him for politics. He ran for the Federal seat of Richmond in 2007 and 2010, did much better than Geoff Ebbs in 2013 and 2014 and has his own Wikipedia page.
Among other mainstream positions he was the general manager of sewage and water engineering firm, Simmonds & Bristow. I am still asked to present as the character or comment on historical events that he was involved in. Most recently he was asked to contribute a chapter to a book on the history of the NSW Greens and the role of the socialist workers clique that took over the NSW Greens party in the mid nineties and have dominated it since.
The Generator is a news service that started life as a radio show in Byron Bay, northern NSW in 2005. The Generator News was broadcast via the Community Radio Network to 40 stations around the country from 2007 until 2010. Most recently it was broadcast on 4ZZZfm Brisbane at midday on Monday and Wednesday. The website, thegenerator.news. continues to provide a valuable historical record of environmental news from 2005 until the current day.
Cry Me A River is the account of one man’s journey to the heart ofAustralia’s water crisis. A lifetime engineer in the water industry and successful businessman, Steve Posselt put everything on the line to paddle or drag a kayak from Brisbane to Adelaide down the full length of the Darling and lower Murray so he could see, first hand, what is happening to Australia’s rivers.
Along the way he talked to school children, farmers and local councils about climate change, water management and sustainability, eliciting their visions for the future. He started out a water engineer with an open mind and some concerns. He ended up alarmed, ashamed and determined to change.
Accompany Steve every step of this 3,000 kilometre journey. Weigh up what he saw with what he was told. Experience the adventure with him; the highs, the lows and the occasional confusion. Enjoy the father and son relationship. Make up your own mind about the state of the rivers.
Steve Posselt calls himself a civil engineer who, he says, happens to be able to read the writing on the wall, telling us that our rivers are dying. And after his extraordinary journey paddling and walking thousands of kilometres along the Murray Darling river system which he so entertainingly chronicles here, he speaks with authority. While his journey is exhilarating as he sweeps us along in his personable style, the way he describes the beauty of our landscape and its devastation, becomes a wake up call to everyone in Australia.
We simply cannot continue as we have been – burning fossil fuels, putting in infrastructure to sell our resources to other countries, having questionable irrigation practices and simply taking and taking without heeding the laws of nature. Steve explains how wetlands serve a purpose, how our rivers are the arteries of our landscape and how we must share water wisely – with each other, the wildlife and the landscape and that long term management of the natural systems is a necessary condition of our survival.
Steve’s journey, his knowledge and experiences, are a beacon, a warning and, hopefully, the start of a solution. Join him on his travels through the pages of this book and learn, as I did, how close we are to midnight when our rivers will perish. Steve does not preach, but he is an acute and interesting observer who concludes. . .
“We all want build a way of life that benefits our children and our grandchildren. If what we build is not sustainable, then we have robbed them of their inheritance. From my observations that is exactly what we have done.
Our river systems are precious. If they die, we die. And they are dying.”
“Thank you, Steve – I hear you cry and I cry too” Di Morrissey February 14 2009
“ This is a ‘must read’ for those interested in discovering how rivers really are the arteries of our country. Steve has chronicled his discovery of the current state of one of our greatest rivers and challenges us all to be a part of the remediation and protection of all rivers. It is a challenge that he has taken on with amazing courage.” Mark Pascoe, CEO, International Water Centre
“One man’s amazing and selfless journey to highlight the plight of our major inlands river systems.
Queensland Canoeing wholly congratulates this effort to sustain the waterways for future users.” Mark Priestley, Executive Officer, Queensland Canoeing Incorporated
“Steve Posselt is one of those amazing people that will risk all for an issue. He doesn’t just talk about the problems facing the planet, he goes and sells his business, gets out there amongst it, and draws attention to the crises that we face. In this easy to read camp fireside chat, Steve vividly highlights the dreadful damage that we have done to, and continue to inflict on our rivers. Highly recommended for anyone concerned about our environment.” David A Hood, FIEAust CP Eng
Chairman of Australia’s College of Environmental Engineers
Chairman, Australian Green Infrastructure Council