Is It Time YOU Write With Politics, Re-Spun?!

It’s time. Time to consider writing with us. We’re expanding our crew and you may be the kind of person we’re looking for.

How would you know? Here are the four steps.

  1. Read the About Politics, Re-Spun page. If you understand that, you’ve passed #1!
  2. Read George Monbiot’s essay called Career Advice, written more than a decade ago. It’s what motivated me to start Politics, Re-Spun in the first place!
  3. Read Jasmin Mujanović‘s entire piece about how to be a significant voice in the world. His clip about how he started with Politics, Re-Spun is right here, below. Read it, follow the link and read the whole thing!
  4. If you have made it this far, you’ve passed the initial informal screen. Congratulations! You likely have at least an acorn of an idea of how you could fit with us: niches, voice, agenda, ideology, individuality, insight, integrity. Scroll down below Jasmin’s excerpt and read about how to light that match.
  5. [Optional] Feel free to pass this onto anyone you deem worthy.

When I began seriously blogging, I did so with a terrific little outfit called Politics, Re-Spun. I was so eager for the opportunity to have someone (anyone) read my writing that I produced the equivalent of free verse prose. As it turns out, there is something to be said for editorial constraints after all.

Nevertheless, the blog was a launching pad and as my focus increasingly sharpened on the Balkans, so did the attention I received, in turn. Suffice it to say, from there I moved on to more region-specific blogs which, in time, eventually led to some general interest publications.

Asymmetric warfare: SOCIAL MEDIA FOR ACADEMICS – Jasmin Mujanović.

Politics, Re-Spun is Expanding Its Writing Crew!


12 years old now and just having passed 1,000 posts, Politics, Re-Spun is looking to expand its writing crew of editorialists.

Would you fit?

  1. Do you know what spin is?
  2. Do you know how to re-spin messaging by exploring the source, context, agenda, audience, etc.; then re-framing the issue to achieve a better policy goal?
  3. Are you interested in social, political, economic and environmental justice?
  4. Do you have a unique and compelling writing voice?
  5. Do you enjoy ranting, while staying grounded in facts?
  6. Do you have a vision for a better community, city, region, country, world?
  7. And, optionally:
    1. Since all art is political, what kind of artistic insight/talent/experience might you possess?
    2. Might you understand intersectionality?
    3. Are you maybe a member of a politically, economically or socially marginalized demographic/community whose voices are often ignored by elites and the media?
    4. Have you maybe enjoyed being published in the past, anywhere?

So whether or not you already have your own blog/outlet, if you can answer most or all of these questions, and you can relate to the work on the website, and you’d like an informed, intentional audience of thousands of people to see your work every month, you would probably fit in!

How to apply:

  1. Email me [see below].
  2. Commit to writing 50-800 word pieces at least 6-12 times each year. Yes! That’s the word range.
  3. Send us your name, email, whatever social media details you’d like to share, 2 samples of 200-800 word pieces you’ve written/published, and a 75 word bio [covering your writing, political/artistic and whatever interesting personal curiosities].

Thanks for pondering possibilities,

Stephen Elliott-Buckley

Alberta Government Begins to Sunset Oil Production

Edmonton’s Eastgate: What are those cylinders in the background?

This week, as an early Christmas present to the province, the world and future generations, the Alberta government has begun the process of completely ending oil, coal and gas production in the province within a generation.

Citing its historic mismanagement of oil royalties compared to Norway’s nearly trillion dollar endowment, the Finance Minister spent much of his speech to the Edmonton Chamber of Commerce defining the government’s new energy posture.

He apologized on behalf of former governments, saying we will now “get off the oil train” [see below], and announced the public consultation phase of new legislation to sunset carbon energy production would begin on February 2, 2015.

The government has established sunset legislation that must meet several principles:

  1. It must set an end date for all carbon energy production in the province within one generation.
  2. It must set a realistic, but brisk slowdown rate.
  3. It must set legislatively-bound targets for how to spend carbon energy royalties on helping build the post-carbon energy infrastructure for the province, nation and continent.
  4. It must show how the government can direct oil resources directly to the green energy manufacturing sector.
  5. It must recommend whether the province should nationalize the province’s oil, gas and coal reserves.
  6. It must maximize meaningful consultation with citizens, community and environmental organizations, First Nations, small business, academics, the energy sector and neighbouring provinces and states with whom we share an air and watershed.
  7. It must also establish the principles for a reclamation plan for healing the land from the abuse of the carbon energy sector.
  8. It must establish a date for a binding provincial referendum and a clear, unambiguous referendum question.

Citing models like Pincher Creek and Edmonton’s Eastgate solar array, the Minister quoted Premier Prentice’s recent comments, “what we should be doing is making investments in those (wind and solar) areas in the context of an overall climate plan for the province.”

The Minister concluded his comments with a story about a time fishing with some friends and their children and grandchildren near Jasper. The narrative about a clean planet and future, still unknown generations moved the audience comprised largely of carbon energy sector businessmen.

During an extended question and answer session following his speech, the Minister invoked the recent statement by Catholic bishops calling for the end of the fossil fuel era, and Al Gore’s warning that fossil fuels are like sub-prime mortgages, which supports the new analysis that carbon energy represents possibly trillions of dollars of stranded assets.

The event ended in a sombre mood as oil executives began ruminating how to avoid a massive write-down of assets that would bankrupt their sector, particularly with oil dropping from $100/barrel to less than $60 in the last 3 months alone.

The 23,700 people who work in green energy organizations outnumber the 22,340 whose work relates to the oil sands.

Alberta Finance Minister Robin Campbell said last week that the province has to “get off the oil train.”

via Green energy sector jobs surpass total oil sands employment – The Globe and Mail.

Confusing People with a Die-In in a Mall?

Shoppers didn't quite know what to make of the whole thing.

Shoppers didn’t quite know what to make of the whole thing.

via Protesters Bring West London To Standstill In Solidarity With Eric Garner And Michael Brown – BuzzFeed News.

I can see their faces, up on that top floor. Looking down. Confused. Concerned. Or…moved to silence?

Were they unsure of why the die-in was happening? Or was it just a lazy line to toss in there.

If the former, THAT’s why we need die-ins. If the latter, sigh.

I think it’s sigh, though. Thinking that a non-brutal mall is an odd thing misses several points, including that people of colour in malls don’t always get treated as others do: click this.

Why Are Capitalists So Lazy?

... Conservatism is So Counterintuitive and Ideologues are Lazy, Part 2Entrepreneurialism, innovation, competition, insight, optimization, excellence?

These are the self-satisfying hallmarks of our jackboot triumphal capitalism.

But what’s with the laziest of the lazy capitalists?

You know, the ones who run the fossil fuel sector. The science is in. They’re causing much of the climate change we’re seeing, except of course for the spoutings of the scientists they pay to say it’s just that the sun is, you know, hot.

But if capitalism is supposed to be this wealth of innovation and better mouse traps, why are these lazy folks sitting around STILL extracting oil, gas and coal from the ground for easy profit when they should show us how awesome they are by spending probably less than a decade converting everything to green energy and leaving the rest of the carbon in the ground.

And despite how there are pods of eco-entrepreneurs all over the place who want to build the post-carbon energy infrastructure and keep capitalism alive, it’s them, the lazy energy ones, and the politicians they fund who are doing it to us. They’re not innovative. They’re:

a.) lazy,

b.) psychopaths,

c.) not all that bright, or

d.) is it that they just believe in optimization and utilitarianism SO MUCH that the most efficient thing to do is get every last drop of dinosaur tears out of the ground because their processing, energy and transportation infrastructure is already in place and it would mean dismantling it to build the post-carbon energy infrastructure? And who cares about the ecological consequences.

Or is it

e.) All of the above?

How Selfish Are Old People?’s not so cut and arid. It’s not like old people didn’t create EarthShip.

But this graphic, that’s not the only study that shows how younger people aren’t so yuppie, so individualist, so consumerist, so selfish.

If you don’t have enough under-40s in your life, work on it.

The fall of the Communist regimes of eastern Europe, with the consequent loss of influence of the parties of Marxist inspiration, gave even more relevance to anti-consumerism–and therefore to “consumerism”–in alternative discourse in a wide variety of forms and topical associations: from catastrophism and radical ecologism to the discourse of movements against climate change and a good part of the “sharing economy.”

via A brief history of contemporary “consumerism” and anti-consumerism.

De-Spinning the Political and Re-Spinning it for Social, Economic and Political Justice