Chelsea Green Blog

Politics & Public Policy

Victory Over Big Ag: How a small town said “Yes!” to a pesticide-free future

May 29, 2018

A Precautionary Tale shares the inspiring story of a group of citizens in Mals, Italy who fought Big Ag and won and, in doing so, became the first place on Earth to ban pesticides by a referendum vote. Their colorful, courageous, and ultimately savvy campaign is being heralded around the world as a landmark effort in…

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VIDEO TED2018: A healthy economy should be designed to thrive, not grow

May 22, 2018

What would a sustainable, universally beneficial economy look like? “Like a doughnut,” says Oxford economist Kate Raworth. In a stellar, eye-opening TED2018 talk, Kate explains how we can move countries out of the hole — where people are falling short on life’s essentials — and create regenerative, distributive economies that work within the planet’s ecological limits. (Afterward,…

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Freedom from Poison: How One Small Town Banned Pesticides, Preserved Its Food Heritage, and Inspired a Movement

April 9, 2018

“The movement for freedom from poisons in our food and agriculture is the most important freedom movement in our times. . . . Read the story of Mals to get inspired. And act.” —from the foreword by VANDANA SHIVA The recent uncovering of The Poison Papers—a collection of documents revealing years of apparent collusion between companies…

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Books to Curl up with this Winter!

February 12, 2018

William Wordsworth was right when he said, “Nature never did betray the heart that loved her.” Nevertheless, the cold, dark days of winter can still get the best of even Nature’s most tenderhearted admirer. What’s one to do? We here at Chelsea Green have concocted the perfect cabin fever remedy with our suggested winter reading…

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BORN ON THIRD BASE author, Chuck Collins, to be interviewed by Bernie Sanders

October 2, 2017

On Tuesday, October 3rd at 11:30 a.m. EST, check out Facebook.com/SenatorSanders for a special Facebook Live event with Senator Bernie Sanders and Chuck Collins, Institute for Policy Studies, author of Born on Third Base, co-editor of Inequality.org. In case you miss the live broadcast, you can watch the replay on the Facebook event page. In…

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Q&A with Kate Raworth about her radical new book, DOUGHNUT ECONOMICS

April 26, 2017

Q: First things first: Why did you want to write this book? A: I studied economics at university 25 years ago because I wanted to make a difference in the world and believed that economics – the mother tongue of public policy – would best equip me to do that. Instead, its theories left me…

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Revisiting Naomi Wolf’s Call to Patriots–10 Years Later

February 23, 2017

Reading Naomi Wolf’s book The End of America: Letter of Warning to a Young Patriot today is an eerie experience. Written in 2007, it detailed the ways in which the Bush administration was beginning to chip away at the freedoms of American citizens. It outlined the ten steps dictators or would-be dictators take when their…

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Yes, America We Can Make It … Really

December 15, 2016

Uncertainty got you down? The political world may seem like it’s crumbling around us, but this we know: We can make it, America. Literally, we can make things. Houses. Gardens. Food. Below we’ve selected some of our classic how-to and DIY books (and some new favorites) to help you sustain your self, family, and community.…

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Chelsea Green on Instagram: Our Most Popular Photos of 2016

December 13, 2016

What a year for Chelsea Green on Instagram! We began the year with 500 followers and are now fast approaching 4,000 photo-loving brewers, gardeners, cheesemakers, permaculturists, foodies, seed-savers, homesteaders, foragers, and more. Our most popular posts of 2016 say a lot about what makes you happy: mushrooms, innovative garden designs and techniques, tiny cabins, and…

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Slack and Taut: Defining a System's Resilience

December 12, 2016

A resilient future (or a resilient present, for that matter) needs to be slack, not taut. What do we mean? Core to the concept of a Lean Economy is understanding the need to move toward a “slack” market rather than one that is “taut.” When British economist David Fleming died unexpectedly in 2010, he left…

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What's a Carbon Sink?

December 7, 2016

World leaders met in Marrakech this month as part of COP22, to discuss the next steps to reducing global climate emissions. One of the solutions being discussed is carbon farming. Author Eric Toensmeier participated in COP22, in part, because he literally wrote a book on it. First off – what is carbon farming? It’s a…

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A Minority President: Why the Polls Failed, And What the Majority Can Do

December 1, 2016

What’s next for the majority of voters who didn’t vote for Donald Trump? There are plenty of takeaways from the 2016 presidential election, but here is perhaps the most thorough examination of why the polls failed, why Hillary Clinton’s campaign failed, and what the majority of voters can do going forward. George Lakoff is the…

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Prehistory of the Next American Revolution

November 28, 2016

What now? A new Revolution? If we are to counter the dangers both of corporate domination and of traditional forms of socialist statism, decentralization is essential—both of economic institutions and of political structure. We are at a point in our nation’s history that could, decades from now, be taught as the prehistory of the next…

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The Seven-Point Protocol for a Lean Economy

November 28, 2016

In the future, what will our local economies look like? How will they function if there is little, to no, state or national support? The late David Fleming envisioned a post-capitalistic society that we could call “deep local” — in which all needs are met at the local level — from income to social capital…

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You won’t have a revolution if you don’t ask for one. So, what are you waiting for?

November 17, 2016

Get ready for the era of Big Organizing. In Rules for Revolutionaries, authors Becky Bond and Zack Exley lay out the 22 Rules the fueled the Bernie Sanders campaign and which provide a way forward for activists looking for ways to move forward post-Election Day. This model, which the authors call “Big Organizing” is the…

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The 20 Rules of Slow Democracy

November 17, 2016

Now, more than ever we need democracy. Why not make it Slow Democracy? Reconnecting with the sources of decisions that affect us, and with the processes of democracy itself, is at the heart of 21st-century sustainable communities — and with the most recent election cycle, a reinvigoration of local democracy will become more important than…

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The Six Vital Capitals of the Future

November 17, 2016

There is an increasing demand on businesses and governments to evaluate their impacts on multiple forms of capital – natural, social, and economic— and this book explains how they can make it happen. The MultiCapital Scorecard’s open-source methodology has been endorsed by the United Nations Environment Program, and it has been shown to help public…

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Author Nicolette Hahn Niman to Speak at Nobel Dialogue on the Future of Food

November 14, 2016

What does a former environmental lawyer and vegetarian turned cattle rancher have in common with Bob Dylan? They’ll both be — theoretically — in Stockholm in December during the Nobel Prize ceremonies. That’s right – Chelsea Green author Nicolette Hahn Niman will be one of several global opinion leaders and experts taking part in this…

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Success: Make the Intense Commitment, Plod On

November 11, 2016

How would you define “success”? To find out the answer to this question we meandered through David Fleming’s Lean Logic. A dictionary unlike any other, Lean Logic encourages readers to actively and intellectually engage with its entries. These entries are often cross-referenced so that you can delve more deeply into how various words, or concepts,…

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We Got Trump-ed. Now What?

November 10, 2016

As the country braces for a Trump presidency, this post-election playbook points the way forward. “We can win — but only if we continue to develop the kinds of tactics, tools, and vision laid out in this vitally important book, perhaps the first to explore how to organize at the true scale of the crises…

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The End of Stationarity

October 24, 2016

Welcome to the End … of Stationarity. And what is “stationarity”? We’re glad you asked. Scientists have devised a new term to explain the turmoil caused by climate change: the end of stationarity. It means that our baselines for rainfall, water flow, temperature, and extreme weather are no longer relevant—that making predictions based on past…

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Bullshit. *Charisma, Icon, Intelligence, Empty Sandwich

October 14, 2016

How does the word “bullshit” connect to Charisma, Intelligence and the notion of The Empty Sandwich? To find out the answer to this question we meandered through David Fleming’s Lean Logic. A dictionary unlike any other, Lean Logic encourages readers to actively and intellectually engage with its entries. These entries are often cross-referenced so that…

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From Farm-to-Table to Farm-to-Everything

October 13, 2016

No longer restricted to the elite segments of society, the farm-to-table movement now reaches a wide spectrum of Americans from hospital and office cafeterias to elementary schools and fast-casual restaurants. Nearly a century ago, the idea of “local food” would have seemed perplexing, since virtually all food was local. Today, most of the food consumed…

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The Three Cs of Farm-to-School

October 13, 2016

Most people know about the three “R’s” – reading, writing, and arithmetic. But, have you heard about the three “C’s”? If you, or your kid, is at a school that takes part in the Farm-to-School movement, then you may already know about them. October is National Farm-to-School month, and in their book Farm to Table,…

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"Rules for Revolutionaries" Offers New Political Playbook for Activists

October 11, 2016

A riveting behind-the-scenes look at the “rules” used by the “revolutionaries” who helped harness the volunteer power that fueled Bernie Sanders’ historic, and insurgent, presidential campaign. Authors Becky Bond and Zack Exley led the Sanders campaign’s efforts to recruit and engage volunteers at an unprecedented level, which was crucial to the Vermont senator capturing 46…

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