Category Archives: Finance

Humboldt Pot, a Petroleum Product

sour diesel skull

I don’t know why we worry so much about Big Tobacco getting into the marijuana industry when the industry has already sold out to Big Oil. When you consider all of the hash labs littered with thousands of empty butane canisters,


all of the lit-up greenhouses and the indoor grows,

grow room big

the big generators,

diesel generator exhaust

the earth moving equipment,

excavator digs

the quads,

quad atv

the giant 4×4 vanity trucks

4x4 truck

and the endless snorting, stench-spewing caravan of soil and water trucks crisscrossing our watersheds,

Image of red colored truck with very dark exhaust, possibly polluting the environment.

it’s no wonder all of the weed we grow around here stinks of diesel fuel. Truth be known, Humboldt weed is primarily a petroleum product, and the industry becomes more oil intensive every day.


The cannabis industry’s thirst for fossil fuel has only grown since coming out of the closet, at least judging by auditory evidence. I’ve never heard so much racket coming out of these hills as I have in the past year, and it’s not just my neighborhood. Yesterday, in town, I heard three different people, independently, complain about loud generators disturbing their peace and quiet in three separate watersheds.

diesel generator camo

In the Redway Post Office, I saw a flier posted by yet another angry forest dweller encouraging people who value their peace and quiet to to report their noisy neighbors to the CA Air Quality Management Board. The flier also reminds people of the health risks associated with noise pollution, like tinnitus, ear damage and hearing loss. I doubt the bureaucrats at CAAQMB want any more than to collect a fee from the offenders, but why not make them pay any way you can.

make them pay

Now that the marijuana industry has come out in the open, apparently, so has the greed. The sun just can’t shine bright or long enough to satisfy our dope yuppies anymore, so they flood the forest with noise pollution and air pollution so they can make light pollution. Besides annoying neighbors, stressing wildlife, degrading the environment and creating a public health threat, every year, a few of these generators blow up and start forest fires. Dope yuppies don’t care, unless it’s their house that burns.

forest fire

Dope yuppies don’t care about anyone but themselves and their own greedy scheme to get rich off of prohibition. All Summer, their soil and water trucks pounded the county roads out in the hills, to rubble, in yet another sacrifice to their insatiable greed. Humboldt’s marijuana industry destroys roads because, every year, all new “farmland” has to be trucked in, as well as a substantial portion of the water needed to grow the crop. Thanks to prohibition, and the massive taxpayer subsidies that go along with it, Humboldt’s dope yuppies make so much money from marijuana that they still turn a profit despite their disgracefully wasteful farming practices.

HOOPA, CA - NOVEMBER 15, 2012 --  Aaron Pole, a wildlife technician with the Hoopa Tribal Forestry, walks inside the forest where marijuana growers left piles of trash after vacating the area on the Hoopa Indian Reservation in eastern Humboldt county on November 15, 2012.  The grow was raided by the sheriff in August and deputies cut down 26,600 plants in eight interconnected clearings along Mill Creek.  Pole and Mark Higley, a wildlife biologist on the Hoopa Indian Reservation, suspect that the huge marijuana grows are killing wildlife in the area. (Photo by Genaro Molina/Los Angeles Times)

Meanwhile, Supervisor Estelle Fennell has the nerve to remind us that homeless people and working single mothers who shop in town, will pay to fix those roads, so that dope yuppies can continue to have Amazon deliver everything they need, right to their door, avoiding the Measure Z sales tax completely, and effectively externalizing yet another business expense to the poorest taxpayers. Way to go Estelle! That’s how you steal from the poor and give to the rich, and that’s why the dope yuppies love her.

estelle fennell quote

Yes the weed around here depends heavily on Big Oil, but it’s not just a matter of contamination, I believe there’s also an element of imitation. I think that cannabis itself responds to our obsession with fossil fuels. Think about it. We know that cannabis responds to its environment. When hippie gardeners grew marijuana by hand, it smelled like fruit and sage, because hippie gardeners love fruit and burn sage,

hippie gardeners

but now, the people who grow pot around here love their big trucks and their quads and their generators. The weed can smell the trucks, and the generators, and all of the exhaust fumes, and the weed thinks we like those smells, so the weed expresses those aromas in its attempt to please us. That’s why so much of the pot around here smells like diesel fuel. How apropos!

this stinks skunk


Cannabis can be a lot of things, but right now cannabis thinks we want a stupefying anesthetic that stinks like diesel fuel, and she is doing her level best to satisfy us. How long do you think it will be before cannabis realizes that we don’t really care about anything but money, and starts to smell like that? Unfortunately, marijuana already smells like money to too many people. That’s the problem.

smelling money

Class, or Class War


In recent weeks, I’ve enjoyed the opportunity to vent my spleen about the people who cause the most problems in my community, especially because I hear so much poisonous rhetoric on the other side, targeting the poor. I’m not a fan of class warfare, but when served, I will answer. It’s always shameful and small to pick on someone weaker than you, and it’s always heroic to stand up to a bully. The way I see it, in this current class war, unless you are squarely allied with the poor, you work for the rich.

join the elite

If you take sides with the rich, in this war, you deserve a punishment a thousand times worse than my stinging words. In this war between the rich and the poor, the middle-class becomes the battlefield, and no one deserves to be pounded into a smoking heap of rubble and ash more than the American middle-class, because the middle-class acts as the mercenary army of the super-rich.


The poor have nothing to lose, and everything to gain by standing up to their oppressors, while the middle-class face trauma and disillusionment, as they slowly wake up to the fact that, in this war, they were the bad guys all along, who wasted their lives, and the planet, on a fantasy lifestyle, that became an economic and environmental monstrosity beyond their darkest nightmares.

game over

When you’ve sold your life for trinkets and find yourself on the wrong side of history, denial becomes a coping mechanism For the rich, losing the class war compares to losing the civil war. Resentments and prejudice will linger, as today’s middle-class conservatives becomes the bitter poor white crackers of the future.


But it doesn’t have to be that way for us here in SoHum. Here in SoHum we have no class, and that’s a kind of poverty that unites us all, from the richest dope yuppie, to the most wretched street urchin, so why should we let class war divide us? We shouldn’t! We should recognize that we’re all poor. Really, I pity us all.

pity us all quote

Why do we work so goddamn hard? Why do we break laws and sell our weed to out of state drug dealers? We do it because we don’t have enough money, right. If we don’t have enough money, it means that some of our wants and needs will go unmet. Am I wrong? Unmet needs equals poverty, and poverty means you’re poor. So face it! We’re all poor. It’s really true. I don’t care how entranced you are with your trinkets, or how jealous you are of anyone else’, we all live in poverty, and our lives are being stolen from us right before our eyes.

a ztolen life

That said, everything we do to make life easier for poor people, makes life easier for us. Think about it. What are the chances that you, or any of your progeny will find yourselves counted among the nations wealthiest one-tenth of one percent? It could happen. You could hit the lottery. Your new cannabis start-up could blow-up big, or your daughter could marry a rich old guy with a heart condition, but I wouldn’t hold my breath.

hold your breath

On the other hand, what are the chances that you, or any of your kids or grandchildren might find yourself short on cash with no place to crash, or be blessed with a personality ill-suited for gainful employment, or fall victim to alcoholism, or become addicted to drugs, or for some other reason, fail to thrive, economically? I don’t know the exact odds, but I’d bet on it, if I were you.

safe bet

That’s why it always makes sense to make life easier for poor people. When you make life easier for poor people, you make life easier for yourself. I’m not saying we have to spend a lot of money to help the poor, but if we at least stop paying people to punish, harass, and humiliate them, we’d all be ahead. If we could recognize that a lot of people who live here will never earn enough to money to afford a place to live under our current system of building codes and zoning ordinances, we could begin to solve a lot of problems by changing the system, instead of trying to change people. People don’t need more money; people need a place to be. Life is hard enough, let’s not make it any harder.

life is hard enough

When you make life easier for poor people, you make life easier for your self, and you make the world richer for everyone, because making it easier to be poor, lowers everyone’s stress level, which benefits everyone, and makes it easier to be an artist, craftsman, musician, poet or writer; you make it possible for the people who don’t care so much about making money, to put their energy into the things that really matter to them. When you make life easier for poor people, you make life better for everyone, and you encourage a flourishing culture. That’s why they call New Orleans “The Big Easy.” and that’s why people love it.

the big easy

People who appreciate an easy life and a flourishing culture, have class. Punishing the poor for their poverty only fuels their resentment, and perpetuates class war. So, we have a choice: We can have some class, or we can have class war. We’re all poor, and we all need somewhere to get out of the weather this winter. We can solve this problem together, or we can make more problems for each other. It’s up to us.

buy some class trump

Understanding SoHum’s “Local Economy”

cannabis tops

In most of America, people understand that drug dealers destroy communities. Neighborhoods either band together to drive them out, or they fail to do so, and drug dealers take over, bringing violence, crime and poverty with them as they undermine community values, corrupt innocent youth, and drive property values down.

drug ghetto

Here in SoHum, when the drug dealers arrived, both property, and community values had already hit rock bottom, and the youth they corrupted were largely their own. Today, after a couple generations of cultural inbreeding, our population now skews strongly towards the greedy, myopic, and ethically challenged, and have united around their shared willingness to exploit the injustice of cannabis prohibition, rather than stand against it.

hey kids wanna buy weed

For some, it has been a very profitable strategy, and now that they’ve become successful, they don’t like to be reminded that their success has come at the expense of millions of poor working people who could ill afford it. They don’t want to see how good people, who make very little money, have to live, in order to afford their medicine. And they especially don’t want to see the refugees of the War on Drugs, the ones who lost their jobs, lost their homes, and lost their way, and then show up here, hoping for some kind of break in the sleazy game that has already cost them so much of their lives.

help i need money

Drug dealers create poverty all over the country, and then complain about all of the poor people around. Drug dealers just don’t care. Either they take drugs that suppress empathy, or they lack the faculty for it. Either way, they have intentionally chosen a path of personal gain at the expense of the larger community. They should not be trusted. They’ll say or do anything, so long as they believe it will benefit them.

truth lies

At first glance, they seem like decent people, and they talk a good game. They spew platitudes like a squid spews ink, and for the same reason, to conceal their sucking tentacles and genuine sliminess. “Community blah blah blah, sustainable, blah blah blah, positivity, blah blah…” they say, but to them, “community” means: “me and my drug dealing friends,” “sustainable” means: “maintaining a high-consumption lifestyle, indefinitely” and “positivity” means: “no matter how gross and slimy we are, I can always find something nice to say about us.” That’s what “community values” means to SoHum’s dope yuppies.

squid spews ink

Still, a lot of people rely on them. Merchants love them. Merchants love stupid people with too much money because they easily become infatuated with shiny objects, and purchase them. Non-profits love people with too much money, and a guilty conscience. Where would community non-profits be without the boundless guilt of rich liberals? So the dope yuppies take advantage of working people, the merchants take advantage of the dope yuppies, and the non-profits take advantage of everyone’s guilty conscience, and they call it “the local economy.”

buy freedom sell conscience

Then they have the nerve to complain about all of the poverty they created, and wonder why no one wants to work for them. Oh, right, I want to work for one of our local merchants for $10-$15 bucks an hour, waiting on rude, obnoxious dope yuppies all day, just so I can spend half of my income on rent, if I’m lucky, and a quarter of it on overpriced cannabis that I need, just to cope with the stress. Fuck that! I’d rather shit and piss on your front step, and beg for beer money on the sidewalk all day.

begging for beer

Why not? Do SoHum’s dope yuppies want cannabis consumers to continue to pay ridiculously high prices for cannabis? You bet they do! They’re lobbying right now for a regulatory framework that preserves prohibition prices and requires more law enforcement activity than ever.

armored truck for pot

Will Humboldt’s merchants, landlords, bankers and real-estate agents do anything to make SoHum more livable, comfortable, or affordable for working people? Fuck no! They’ll squeeze every last dime out of everyone in town, and then complain that it was such a bother, and barely worth their time.


Will any of the non-profits, who have gladly accepted thousands upon thousands of hours of free labor, donated by people who lack adequate housing, ever launch a campaign to make housing affordable, and available to the people in this community who need it? I wouldn’t hold my breath. The non-profits around here are much more likely to buy up homes in the area, and build new structures, not to house people, but just to have a place to store all of the other crap they own. Besides, our local non-profits have more important things to do, like protecting endangered cannabis from salmon extinction, or looking out for some people’s civil rights, or providing subsidized entertainment for bored dope yuppies.

concert at mateel

If you aren’t part of that dope yuppie/merchant/non-profit clusterfuck, they don’t even know you exist, except in the vaguest sense. By that I mean, they understand that all of their money and labor comes from somewhere, but they have no idea where. Together, they’re trapped in a death-spiral of greed, consumption and guilt that feeds on itself, while it sucks the life out of the the rest of the community.


The War on Drugs has ravaged this country, killing millions, and leaving millions more scarred for life, but here in SoHum, the War on Drugs is highly addictive, and too many people remain far too intoxicated by the money it brings in to recognize the damage it does right here in our own community.

dope yuppies suck

Columbus’ People Rule


Today we remember the most horrific genocide ever perpetrated, the most virulent epidemiological event in the history of mankind, and the radical transformation of an entire continent.

Columbus lands

We named the day for the man who started it all, Christopher Columbus. Columbus and his crew brought a plethora of diseases with them on their long, perilous journey across the ocean, diseases of the body, as well as diseases of the mind, notable among them, syphilis, influenza, and the concept of private property.

columbus day hanging

Unfortunately, penicillin only cured one of them. The flu, and private property plague us to this day. The flu sickens millions, and kills thousands, in this country alone, every year, but private property has done far worse. The concept of private property has destroyed more than 95% of the natural habitat in North America, and it impoverishes billions of people all over the world, who starve, sicken and die in squalid, dangerous and abhorrent conditions. Whether you own it or not, we all pay a high price for the concept of private property, and in some way, it enslaves us all.

houses on coins

I realize that this seems like kind of a bummer of a holiday, but not everyone thinks about it this way. For bankers and government workers, Columbus Day is a very important holiday. That’s why bankers and government workers get the day off. To them, Columbus Day represents the epitome of what is possible when banks and governments work together. Only when banks and government work together, is private property even possible. Without banks and government, private property amounts to nothing more than an enormous pile of meaningless paper.

mortgage industry

Private property has no basis in reality. It is a contrivance, an artificial, arbitrary system rooted in violence and oppression, and only through violence and oppression can the system of private property continue. That’s why we have a sheriff’s department, and that’s what sheriffs do: They evict people, and they arrest trespassers. You can’t have private property without lots of well armed, and well paid thugs, and lots of violence. Private property is a complex system of greed and thuggery, that, if stripped of it’s longstanding illusion of legitimacy, could only be described as organized crime.


Here in Humboldt County, however, we talk about property rights like they were sacred, and as though there were some principled reason to support them. There isn’t. Property Rights! Is just the rallying cry of greedy land owners complaining that government doesn’t kiss their ass enough. Calling them “rights” doesn’t make it any less wrong.

humcpr wrong

I could understand people being pissed off about human rights violations. I see plenty of those around here. I can certainly understand why patriotic Americans would be outraged by the civil rights violations I see, especially on the streets of Garberville. Believe it or not, all people have the right to peaceably assemble in all public places, including sidewalks, malls and shopping centers. Everyone has the right to carry a sign, to engage you in conversation, and to ask for your help, even persistently. Those are clearly established civil rights, that this country was founded on, and that veterans fought and died for. Make damn sure you respect them, and that your neighbors respect them too, before you come whining to me about your goddamned property rights.

buy me a pizza

When you think of “property rights” it should remind you that in addition to the high-minded ideals, like democracy, the separation of church and state, and inalienable human rights, for which the Founding Fathers are so rightly famous, their thinking was ultimately, firmly rooted in the same disease that afflicted Christopher Columbus, namely, the system of institutionalized violence known as private property.


We learn a lot about civil rights, human rights, and the Bill of Rights, in public school, but they mostly gloss over the implications of property rights, until you get to college, and take economics. That way, by the time you learn that property rights ain’t right, you’re already too far in debt, and too deeply invested in the system to oppose it, and/or you’ve already returned from some bloody hell-hole where you saw what happens to those who do oppose it. The fact remains that the concept of private property may be the most deeply flawed and most destructive ideas ever forged by the human mind, and we all suffer enormously for it.

teacher from the wall

This Columbus Day, let’s recognize Columbus’ legacy for what it is, a disease, a terrible disease, and by all indications, a terminal disease, and that the concept of private property forms the nucleus of this pathogen. The “CPR” in HumCPR might as well stand for Columbus’ People Rule, and it’s time we brought their reign to an end.

slavery goethe quote

What the Gyppo Ale Mill Controversy Says About SoHum

gyppo ale mill

In the latest evidence of the moral bankruptcy of my community, a standing room only crowd turned out to pressure the Redway Community Services District into permitting a new brew-pub to suck water from Redway’s already overtaxed water system. If there’s anything this community needs less than another industrial scale water waster, it’s more beer, and encouragement to drink it.

beer five at once

We have a huge problem with alcohol abuse here in Southern Humboldt, and you don’t need statistics to see it. It hits you in the face everywhere you go. Homeless alcoholics litter our streets from one end of town to the other, but the people with homes drink even more. Just attend one of the many non-profit fundraisers, and watch how fast people suck down those $6 beers. Try showing up, sober, at around 10:30pm. See if you can find one person who’s not too drunk to talk to. Most community events around here feel like a college frat party, except that half of the drunks are old enough to have kids in college, or grandkids.

drunk-girl old-man

Read the papers. Without DUIs, alcohol related traffic fatalities, disorderly conduct arrests and editorial complaints about public drunkenness, our local papers would have to investigate our corrupt county government just to fill the pages. Can you imagine that?. Linda Stansberrry reports, in her recent story in the NCJ, that people die of drug and alcohol related causes here in Humboldt County at THREE TIMES the state average. We’re so drunk here in Humboldt that even our statistics are staggering.

staggering home

Do we care? Fuck no! I guess we like it when our neighbors and our kids die, or when our kids run people over and leave them to bleed to death on the street. That’s just part of growing up, right? Funerals give us another excuse to get sauced, and there’s too damn many of us around here anyway. Let’s build a new brew pub so our kids can get drunk and run people over a little closer to home.


Here in SoHum, all we care about is getting drunk and making money. That’s why we think the marijuana industry should look like the wine industry. So, when the Redway Community Services District raised concerns about how this proposed new brew pub might negatively effect the small town’s water supply, greedy drunks came out in force to express their outrage, in an all out effort to ram the project through.

Bloody Ram

No one expressed concern about how this new brew pub, proposed for the Meadows Business Park, might lead to more traffic fatalities, especially since the proposed location lies halfway between SoHums two most densely populated residential areas, but not within easy walking distance of either.

Drunk_Driving getting people home

The out-of-the-way location, in an industrial park, will not attract tourists, or promote shopping in downtown Garberville. Instead, the proposed new brew pub would cater to locals who like to drink and drive, and it would encourage us all to drink and drive more. How is this good for us as a community?

no conjdition to drive

Thankfully, the Redway Community Services District stood up to the pressure, and the brewmongers went home angry, and got drunk. We may be famous for our cannabis, but the cannabis industry supports a destructive alcoholic lifestyle. Cannabis has the capacity to alter consciousness, but in SoHum’s dope yuppies, greed, and the thirst for alcohol, clouds their thinking so completely that even the best cannabis doesn’t reach them. They grow weed, but they think like alcoholics.

scotty kisses bottle

No, weed is not wine. Weed is nothing like wine, but SoHum’s dope yuppies think like alcoholics everywhere. Alcoholism is the disease that spawned our unsustainable culture of violence and environmental destruction to begin with, and alcoholism shapes our culture to this day. That’s why we inhabit such a cruel, heartless society, and face a looming environmental crisis. Alcoholism destroys lives. It destroys families. It destroys communities, including ours, and it is destroying the world.

alcoholism the diseaese

Cannabis is the solution, but SoHum’s alcoholic dope yuppies are just part of the problem.

cannabis is the solution

Welcome, Willcommen, Bienvenida, to SoHum

welcome languages

As the days grow shorter, and the pervasive aroma of ripening cannabis flowers fills the air, young travelers from all over the world descend on Southern Humboldt to remind us how provincial we are by comparison. What we lack in culture, class and common courtesy, we make up for with money and marijuana. Believe me, if it weren’t for the money and the weed, these adventurous world travelers wouldn’t waste one minute of their precious time on us, but here they come, again.

here they come again

Sure, lots of interesting people come from all over the world to see the giant redwoods, but only marijuana and money brings interesting people here to see us, mainly in search of boring work. I’d think the opportunity to have a crew of people from far flung places like France, Brazil and New Zealand, sharing their diverse backgrounds, as well as their travel stories, as they trim your weed, must be one of the best things about the life of a Humboldt Dope Yuppie. Of course, I don’t think like a Dope Yuppie.

too much weed

Dope Yuppies don’t care about cultural exchange. Still, trimmigrants often advertise their cultural diversity to entice would-be employers. “Two Germans looking for work.” one sign I saw recently read. “For hire: Spanish couple, from Amsterdam…” began the classified ad I heard on KMUD.

get a job in marijuana fields

They have no idea. Ideally the ad should read: “White woman, under 30, with two breasts, seeks employment. Willing to work, ogling tolerated.” Face it. No guy, who has been stuck on a hill in the middle of the forest all by himself for the last six months wants to hear another guy tell him about how hot the women in Berlin are, or about the club scene in Brazil, or even about farming on a Kibbutz in Israel. He knows that he is not getting off of that hill until all of that weed gets clipped. He wants to see pounds of marketable product, and tits. That’s it.

woman with weed

Growers generally don’t maintain facilities for these seasonal workers, and at the time when growers need them, every square foot of indoor space is usually full of freshly harvested cannabis. Often, trimmigrants sleep on the floor of the drying shed, in the crawl space beneath the hanging herb, usually just a few feet away from a folding chair in which they will spend almost every waking minute of their entire two week, or month long stay. That is the life of a trimmigrant.

trimming pot

Yes, people from all over, come here, to one of the most beautiful places in the whole world, to spend 16 hours a day locked in a windowless room full of weed, operating a pair of scissors under unchanging artificial light. The work is not difficult, but it is extremely dull, and it demands long hours. If you can tolerate the boredom, muscle cramps and eye-strain, don’t mind watching a few weeks of your life evaporate, and don’t have a life to lead that you can’t just disappear from for a month or so, trimming weed can seem like a decent gig. A good trimmer can earn $1000 or more per week, and sometimes they even get paid.

not getting paid

Local merchants should celebrate this influx of foreign tourists. I’ve seen these kids eat at all of the local restaurants and cafes. I see them buy groceries and beer, and I’m sure they’d even pay for a place to camp, if they could find a reasonably priced campground. They spend money, but a lot of them come from places where they just naturally expect to be treated like human beings by the businesses they patronize. I guess that’s kind of a European thing, but, you know, we could give it a shot.

give it a shot

I haven’t seen much by way of hospitality extended to these people who have come such a long way to visit our little community. I mean, we put out porta-potties and throw a barbeque for the bikers when they come here to get drunk and loud at the Harley Run. I’ll bet we could get trimmigrants to spend more money here, if we treated them like we were glad to see them, and offered them things they needed and wanted.

give them what they want

They couldn’t be any scummier than the bikers; there’s more of them, and they stay longer. Really, these are some the nicest, most interesting people you are likely to meet in Humboldt County at any time of year. We should all make the most of our time with them while they are here. In that spirit, I say: “Welcome to SoHum. How may I be of service?” and “Wir sprechen Deutsch”

wir sprechen deutsch

(not really, but I’ll do my best to dredge up what I can remember from watching Hogan’s Heroes)

hogans heroes

Choice and Change in Humboldt County


People talk about homelessness as though it were a choice. How many times have you heard someone say, “If that’s how they choose to live…” when talking about homeless people? What a ludicrous idea! Homelessness happens to people. They don’t aspire to it. They don’t plan it, and few are well prepared for it when it happens to them. People don’t choose homelessness. Homelessness is what happens to people who run out of options.


On the other hand, people do choose to become middle-class. The aspiration to become middle-class is so pervasive that it has acquired a nickname. We call it the American Dream. Yes, people choose to become middle-class. They aspire to join the middle-class. They work to achieve middle-class status, and even after they’ve established themselves within the middle-class, they never quite feel middle-class enough.

not middle class enough

A lot of people choose to live a middle-class lifestyle, and it’s a choice most people make without giving it a lot of thought. It’s an expensive choice. The middle-class lifestyle consumes people’s lives as greedily as it consumes the earth’s resources. The middle-class lifestyle doesn’t happen by accident. It takes dedication and lifelong commitment to join the ranks of the middle-class.

chance of middle class

At the same time, the middle-class lifestyle has a very poor record of making people happy. As anyone raised in a middle-class home can tell you, the middle-class lifestyle ain’t all it’s cracked up to be. Still, people throw themselves at the middle-class, like proverbial lemmings over a cliff. Even real lemmings aren’t that stupid. What gives?

another way to go

You see, most people don’t choose a middle-class lifestyle because it looks particularly attractive. Most people choose to become middle-class because the prospect of homelessness frightens them so much. In this way, the middle-class are a lot like Christians, who abstain from earthly pleasures, not so much because they dream of someday flying through the clouds playing a harp, but because they fear the fires of Hell.

hell fear

This kind of fear grows into resentment. In the same way that deeply frustrated Christians vent their resentment at gay people and women seeking abortions, the middle-class vent their resentment at the poor and homeless. In both cases it’s a gross display of stupidity, gullibility and cowardice aimed at the most vulnerable. Like Christians, the middle-class have been frightened into believing a fairy tale that controls their lives and makes them resentful of non-believers.


No one forces them to become middle-class. I’m sure they feel a lot of pressure from family and friends, not to mention the media, and society at large. Even the government tries to enforce a middle-class lifestyle through policy, sanction, and ordinance. However, the decision to pursue a middle-class lifestyle remains a personal choice, and one that can only be realized through dedication and hard work. Still, it’s a choice most people make without much serious thought.

choice consequences quote

We know that most of the serious crises we face today, like global climate change, habitat loss and the extinction crisis, result directly from too many people choosing a conventional American middle-class lifestyle. From a scientific perspective, it seems clear that the single biggest threat to our long-term survival, is our global infatuation with becoming middle-class. If we actually thought about it, we’d realize what a destructive, high-maintenance, low-satisfaction lifestyle the middle-class have chosen. Few of us would eagerly repeat their mistakes. But instead of thinking, we blindly perpetuate a culture of fear and oppression that serves only the super-rich, while it pushes us all relentlessly towards extinction.

extinction c n h

Who do we blame for this? Invariably, we blame the poor. We blame the poor for not pulling their weight. We blame the poor for frightening children, driving off tourists, blocking sidewalks, and especially for not going away. Then, when they finally crack, under the pressure of poverty, lack of sleep, poor diet, constant harassment and social isolation, we blame their poverty on mental illness. How does this make sense?

no logic exists

If you ask me, I say, “Blame the middle-class.” Blame the sniveling cowards who turned their backs on humanity and stuck their tongues deep into the rectum of the super-rich, just for the chance to spend the future, today. Blame the middle-class for their greed, stupidity, and cowardice. Blame them for their choices, because the choices were all theirs to make.

thats so middle class

Whether it was their lack of imagination, their gullibility, or their infatuation with bright shiny objects that lead middle-class people to make the dreadful decisions that define their lives and shape our world, ultimately, blaming people doesn’t solve the problem. To solve this problem, people have to learn to live differently.

learn to live differently

I realize that you’ve heard this before. “Create a sustainable lifestyle” has been a mantra of environmental organizations for decades, environmental groups that rely mainly on the middle-class
for their support. Still, if we manage to survive this century as a species, it won’t be because we developed some new clean energy source, it will be because we learned to live differently.


Do you remember that part of our Humboldt County heritage? You’ve seen the experimental houses, the strawbale, cobb, ferro-cement, and wattle-and-daub buildings, the yurts, tepees, wikiups, and benders, the domes, tree-houses, house-trees, and the thousands of funky, idiosyncratic little wooden dwellings that grace our Humboldt County hillsides. Those houses exist because a lot of people came to Humboldt County to experiment with different ways of living, not to become middle-class yuppies by growing dope.

funky tree home humboldt

We’ve seen how these experiments pay off economically. The Solar Living Center in Hopland, and the Schottz energy lab in Arcata come to mind immediately, as examples of how a modest cultural experiment can catalyze change and create real economic opportunities.

solar living center

We have a long history of experimental, owner-built housing in Humboldt County. We need housing now more than ever, and we need housing that works for people, rather than vice-versa. We need to learn to live differently, and few things reflect the way we live more than the homes we live in.

tiny home-tile

Here in Humboldt County, we have the opportunity to take a humane approach to our housing shortage, and open a door to the future, or not. People need a place to live. We can continue to deny our neighbors the dignity of privacy and a place to escape the elements, or we can create the kind of cultural incubator that solves problems, sets trends, and creates the economic opportunities of the future.


Class War against the poor will never succeed, and the middle-class will never be happy with what they have. We need to find another way to live, and if we want to know what that looks like, we need to allow the people who need it the most, an opportunity to build it for themselves.

build it yourself1


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