By Lorna Salzman
September 2nd, 2011
Dear depressed frustrated American environmental activists: see article below please.
Leadnow.ca is yet another unfocused, fuzzy, unprovocative and unimaginative organization dedicated to all the good things liberals crave. They are a perfect fit for our 350.org/1Sky group, detached as they are from political reality and dedicated to distracting and detaching the rest of us from meaningful, forceful action on global warming and the environment.
There are some clever public relations people behind all this, including LeadNow’s own director, whose background in "global strategy and finance" qualifies him eminently to avoid the real causes of and solutions to the global ecological crises. If I were in his place I would do exactly what he and 350.org are doing: introduce all kinds of other extraneous issues into the mix, pretend that a few upbeat press releases about "action" and "renewable energy" will do the trick, and give the impression that serious political challenges to decision=makers and corporations will be forthcoming.
If I were a corporate bigwig, developer, foundation board member, congressman, or global financier, I could not be happier at seeing yet another feeble and fraudulent effort to fool people into thinking that something serious is being done. I would gladly open the deep pockets of my business or institution. I would pop the champagne cork and celebrate the ingenuity of 350.org and LeadNow in screening its disembodied hologram throughout the world.
But to be fair, let’s not blame opportunists for doing what they were born to do. Let’s look at our own society, at the paleoliberals, the centrists, the Democrats, the appeasers, the timid, the free marketees, the capitalists, the morally righteous, the religious, the uninformed populace, the corrupted media. But let’s give a special hard look at those purporting to be leaders and spokesmen and representatives of the "environmental movement", namely Bill McKibben and his faithful but blind acolytes, and their capitulation to big business, corporations, rich funders, and their stubborn refusal to confront the root causes and the radical remedies needed to save civilization.
THEY STILL HAVE NO AGENDA WHATSOEVER ON ENERGY AND CLIMATE CHANGE. THEY HAVE NO PROPOSALS ON HOW TO REACH THEIR STATED GOAL OF 350 PPM. THEY HAVE DELIBERATELY REJECTED POLITICAL AND ELECTORAL CAMPAIGNS AND CONGRESSIONAL LOBBYING. THEY HAVE FAILED TO PROVIDE THEIR SUPPORTERS WITH SPECIFIC TASKS AND CONCRETE SUGGESTIONS FOR ACTION BEYOND DEMONSTRATIONS AND TREE PLANTING. THEY HAVE PROPOSED NO SOLUTIONS EXCEPT THE USUAL HOMILIES ABOUT RENEWABLE ENERGY.
IS THIS LEADERSHIP? OR IS IT SABOTAGE?
Gone are the principled uncompromising voices and vision of people like Dave Brower. Gone are the heady days of the 1970s when Pres. Nixon signed our most important pieces of federal legislation, only to be followed by hollow men like Jimmy Carter, Bill Clinton and, now, Barack Obama, supreme appeaser and capitulator to all the regressive forces extant today. Gone are the days when the dozen largest national groups in Washington DC jointly challenged the corporate establishment, pollution, overdevelopment and wilderness destroyers. Today, at the most critical juncture civilization has ever reached, we are lacking in people of conscience, conviction, commitment and above all intellectual honesty about both the root causes and about the imperatively radical actions that must be taken across society….not just in front of the White House but in our congress, state legislatures, media, civic associations, churches and synagogues, and communities.
Cowardice and moral retreat have replaced courage and honesty. Fast-talking sales promotion consultants and analysts dictate the direction and content of progressive movement’s missions and campaigns. Neologisms like "framing" and "narrative" dominate the almost-disappeared public dialogue. Truly, we are living in a time of virtual reality that has captivated and hypnotized us, seemingly beyond rescue.
The consequences of inaction are already being manifested, but there is little response beyond hand-wringing and writing of small checks. So ask yourselves this question: are you silent and immobile because you are a doubter, or because you think there are more important things to do, or because you think the situation is hopeless? None of these are acceptable responses.
From: Cory Morningstar
Sent: Friday, September 02, 2011 12:25 AM
To: ‘Lorna Salzman’
Subject: VERY IMPORTANT – 350.org infiltrates Canada via new Canadian org. called leadnow.ca
Jamie Biggar is the co-founder and executive director of leadnow.ca (350.org is working with them-see below). It appears that he is likely a key organizer of, what will undoubtedly be, another state-sanctioned action Tar Sands Action in Ottawa. Biggar is also an endorser of the ‘action’.
Adam Shedletzky is founding director & board representative of LeadNow modeled after MoveOn.org (USA) and GetUp.org.au. Shedletsky was the Canadian coordinator for the 350.org 10/10/10 global work party and a former management consultant. His background/education is global strategy & finance. In 2005 he co-founded itsgettinghotinhere.org.
Something exciting is brewing in Canada right now. 350.org is working with a new political organization called Leadnow, spearheaded by our friend Jamie Biggar, and we wanted you to be on the ground floor of this exciting initiative:
Dear 350 Community,
We are huge fans of yours, and deeply grateful for the opportunity to write you today. We’re writing because toxic politics and division are holding our country back and hurting our people and our planet. With a possible federal election right around the corner, it’s time to work together for change.
We are part of a team that has just launched Leadnow.ca—a people-powered movement bringing generations of Canadians together to take action for our future and hold politicians accountable.
Canada needs a positive vision, political cooperation, and more and more people committing to use their vote for change. You can make it happen.
Right now, Canadians like you, from all across the country, are creating the Declaration for Change—a call for politicians to work together for progress on the major challenges facing our country. Before the next election, you will be able to send a powerful message by joining thousands of Canadians to back the Declaration for Change with a commitment to vote for the politicians who rise to the challenge.
But first, you can help create the Declaration for Change by adding your voice to our online values survey at:
Many of the people working with Leadnow.ca started organizing in the youth climate movement, and we have participated in many awesome 350 events. We’re excited for the opportunity to write you because we know that when Canadians like you work together, we can change Canadian politics.
Last week, in over 75 events across the country, from St. John’s to Whitehorse, Canadians came together to share their values and voices to help create the Declaration for Change. Click below to join the process online, tell our politicians what you think, and see what Canadians like you want for our country:
We need a new kind of politics to face the interlocking crises that define our young century. We need people to lead.
With hope and respect,
Jamie and Adam on behalf of the Leadnow.ca team
PS—Have you seen our launch video, "Canadian Hot Tub?" It’s a quick tribute video to a time when politicians were willing to cooperate for progress – check it out & share with your friends at
To join our list (maybe a friend forwarded you this e-mail) visit www.350.org/signup
350.org is an international grassroots campaign that aims to mobilize a global climate movement united by a common call to action. By spreading an understanding of the science and a shared vision for a fair policy, we will ensure that the world creates bold and equitable solutions to the climate crisis. 350.org is an independent and not-for-profit project.
What is 350? 350 is the number that leading scientists say is the safe upper limit for carbon dioxide in our atmosphere. Scientists measure carbon dioxide in "parts per million" (ppm), so 350ppm is the number humanity needs to get below as soon as possible to avoid runaway climate change. To get there, we need a different kind of PPM-a "people powered movement" that is made of of people like you in every corner of the planet.