SOS #13    J. Morris Hicks    (7-10-19)  
Donkeys, Spaceships and Survival
To me, it's like a blinding flash of the obvious that we must totally reinvent, or reengineer, the way we live on this planet. Tweaking what we have is not going to work.

It's time to go back to the drawing board and figure out exactly how we must live in order to survive. And it's not a matter of just pleading with everyone to choose a more sustainable lifestyle; it's a matter of a well-designed systemic fix to replace our current civilization that has evolved willy-nilly for the last 200,000 years of our existence as a species. 

I concluded long ago that spending trillions of dollars and dozens of years on projects that we hope will convert our harmful and wasteful civilization into one that can coexist indefinitely with nature is somewhat like... 

...trying to convert a donkey into a spaceship !

It simply ain't gonna happen! Meanwhile, we're wasting crucial time, energy and resources on a process that will never enable us to live in harmony with nature. 

It is time to start over from scratch, and with the miracle of AI (artificial intelligence), we just might be able to save ourselves. 

And we can also save the donkey.

Where is the VISION and the PLAN? After almost seventeen years of researching the broad topic of sustainability, I've heard of no scientist, head of state, environmentalist, inventor, philanthropist, corporate tycoon, engineer or anthropologist who has concluded that we must totally  re-invent our civilization. 

I've also heard of no one who has a VISION for what that new civilization might look like. And w ith no vision or conceptual design of a completely re-invented civilization, there can be no planning process and; therefore, no workable implementation PLAN. 

Of course, without a workable, coordinated plan, all global efforts to convert the donkey  will be willy-nilly and that spaceship  will never fly.

VISION is the first step. As far as I know, no prominent leader is talking about developing a plan for reinventing our civilization and saving humanity. 

But  Dr. James Lovelock, who turns 100 this month, comes close to suggesting what must be done when he voiced this conclusion on BBC in 2010:

If the Earth improves as a result of our presence, we will flourish, if it  doesn't , then we will die off.      

Since  Lovelock's body of work suggests that humanity is living nowhere near a sustainable level, he is obviously implying (in the above statement) that without some HUGE changes, or reinvention of our civilization, that we're doomed as a species. He adds:

When you see the whole picture, it is really fearsomely bad...I fear that not many of us will survive, at best about a billion - possibly a lot less than that.

What about the environmental groups? What are they saying? What are their plans? I have heard none of them say anything remotely close to articulating a global need to totally re-engineer our entire civilization in the developed world? 

I also feel that their work actually leads to complacency among their donors, who are also doing lots of recycling, and a host of other "sustainability" initiatives that have zero chance of saving us. 

All of which begs the question: What exactly are they doing that will result in the "Earth improving because of our presence?" Do they have a "big picture" plan?

A revealing anecdote. Less than ten years ago, I found myself in a relatively small meeting (less than thirty people) that was attended by leaders of two of the environmental NGOs shown above: the CEO of one and an EVP of the other. Someone asked them both a question: 

Knowing that it takes far more land, water and energy (per calorie) to produce animal based foods, why is there no information on either of your websites about humanity's environmentally disastrous habit of eating meat, dairy, eggs and fish?
Within minutes, they both admitted that if their NGO was identified as being "anti-meat" that it would seriously hurt their fundraising efforts. 

To me, that speaks volumes!

If they've not got the courage and integrity to tackle a simple issue like promoting plant-based eating for their members, how could they ever come up with a comprehensive sustainability PLAN for our planet - one that would certainly require many drastic lifestyle changes, in addition to the relatively painless adoption of an eco-friendly diet?

The simple answer is that they won't. Now I'm not saying that some of them aren't doing some good work, but it would a giant stretch of the imagination to suggest that the ongoing combined efforts of all such organizations would even scratch the surface when it comes to making our civilization GREEN ENOUGH for us to live in harmony with nature.

So if they're not tackling the most important task in the history of humanity because it might hurt their funding, why are they even in existence? All of which leads to these two questions:
  • If the world's environmental groups are not even attempting to develop a comprehensive, workable PLAN for how we can save ourselves, then who will? 
  • First we must answer this question:

The Bottom Line. What we need is an urgent, global conversation about tackling the mission described in the above slide from my latest presentation that I will deliver at Dr. Joel Fuhrman's Health Getaway in California next week.
I have been researching this topic for about ten years but only last September did I finally publish a "creative idea" for how we in the USA might create an exceptionally sustainable way of living that the rest of the world could emulate. 

In an attempt to generate more thinking and conversation on the necessity of a sustainable global "living" plan for humanity, I launched my GRATOLA series of blogs.

In  a nutshell, GRATOLA is an acronym for "Green Region Atlanta to L.A." and would be the first of four envisioned living corridors in the USA and they would ultimately house up to 300 million people. Occupying a total area about the size of Oregon - the entire area would be governed by AGRA (American Green Region Authority). Here is a link to that first blog, published on 9-21-18. 

As for the actual adoption and execution of that  creative idea, I am not so naive as to think that it could be implemented as written. Hence...

My primary goal with that "idea" was to spark the conversation and that is still my goal.

Arctic Update. The daily loss of sea ice extent since June 24 has averaged 115,000 square kilometers - and the rate is accelerating as we move into uncharted waters.  We lost a near record 176,000 square kilometers yesterday - an area almost half the size of California. 

Next week's SOS Memo will provide you with a more detailed, up-to-the-minute analysis. Meanwhile, you can check out the NSIDC for more data. What does this mean? Dahr Jamail is much better equipped to answer that question than I am.


I have posted another 42 blogs on my Gratola topic since 9-21-18 and you can find all of them at this page on my website. Here are five of them:
As always, I will continue to focus on this crucial topic - in my research, my writing and my speaking.   

As for speaking, I continue to search for mainstream audiences who may have an interest in learning more about a realistically hopeful vision for our future - and their role in making that vision come true.

As such, I will travel anywhere for an opportunity to speak to one or more groups in each city that I visit. I only ask for travel expense reimbursement and a modest honorarium.

Recently scheduled: An event with Dr. Joel Fuhrman at his   Golden Gate Summer Health Getaway  in California on July 18 and at a VegFest in Sedona, Arizona in January.

As for the specifics of my topic, I invite you to  contact me directly  about how I might tailor my presentation to best suit an audience you may have in mind: 

Universities,  churches,  think-tanks, legislative bodies, environmental  organizations, alumni associations, leadership clubs,  and/or civic groups who may appreciate a message of reality and hope for our future. 

Please let me hear from you directly regarding any ideas or questions you may have.

What else can you do to help? Three things:

1. Live as greenly as possible while doing all that you can to raise the awareness of "big picture" solutions that are crucially necessary for saving our civilization.

2. Share this BSB and my  "Mama Ain't Happy" BSB with prominent journalists, thought leaders and/or elected officials whom you respect. They need to learn a lot more about the many reasons why  Mama ain't happy.

3. Here are a few more GRATOLA-related blogs that you can share with your most powerful friends, leaders, journalists and movie producers.

Click here for links  to all blogs and SOS Memos since 2016

Until next time, just remember...

Humanity is on a collision course with Nature.
A damaged Nature will survive. We may not.
We must change course to avert an ecological disaster.

Be well,

J. Morris (Jim) Hicks 
CEO, 4Leaf Global, LLC

I welcome your feedback and/or questions at:

In the past 12 months, I have spoken at a  VegFest in
Fort Myers, at  in Honolulu and Kahului, Maui, the   College of the Holy Cross  in Worcester, MA, a  Plant Powered Manhattan  event in New York, and at a lakeside health conference in  South Haven, Michigan and most recently in Buffalo, NY, and at the University of Scranton.

To schedule a presentation at a venue near you, please contact me at

Promoting health, hope and harmony on planet Earth

Moonglow J. Morris Hicks

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