SOS #7    J. Morris Hicks    (5-30-19)  
Willy-Nilly Planet Stewardship
What do I mean by willy-nilly? 

Spending trillions of dollars on replacing infrastructure with no  green  plan in place for the United States, much less for the planet. Here's the Webster definition of willy-nilly: without direction or planning, haphazardly. 

Hypothetically, imagine that a scouting team of aliens are observing life on our planet. No doubt those visiting aliens are far superior to us in terms of intelligence and knowledge - so just imagine what they might be saying about us Earthlings:

Look at those so-called human beings down there, busily going about the process of destroying the most-perfect planet in the known universe. They have a total of 195 so-called countries, none of which are seriously engaged in protecting the ecosystem that gave them life. 

The only thing they all seem to have in common is something they call GREED, an attitude of recklessly grabbing whatever you can, for as long as you can, from nature and from each other.

The question for us is, do we take them out now, or do  we just return to claim this planet for ourselves in  about 75 years when those stupid Earthlings will have driven themselves extinct?

So what is our plan?  The simple answer is that we have no "big picture" plan. In the United States alone, we're spending hundreds of billions of dollars on hurricane relief in the same areas where we know there will be many future storms along with permanently rising sea levels. 

And we're applying trillion dollar bandaids to a plethora of decaying infrastructure and transportation systems that are all part of a grossly unsustainable system of living.

One example in NYC. Have you heard about the new $10 billion subway line? Here's how David Wallace-Wells described it in his 2019 book, Uninhabitable Earth.

It took New York City forty-five years to build three new stops on a single subway line; [yet] the threat of catastrophic climate change means we need to entirely rebuild the world's infrastructure in considerably less time. 

Now don't get me wrong, I have ridden the trains and visited the new stations on the Second Avenue Subway. And they're all very well done and will be enjoyed by many New Yorkers - but they are simply a new piece of an overall way of life that has no reasonable chance of coexisting sustainably with nature for much longer.

A few more examples.  I took a look at two other areas that are accounting for much of our spending in the USA.
  • According to a recent piece on Bidnet.comthe annual cost of road maintenance in the USA is running well over $400 billion. 
  • Also, according to a 3-9-19 piece on Business Insider, the ASCE says that we need to spend a whopping $4.6 trillion on overall infrastructure in the USA by 2025 - an average of about a trillion bucks a year.
And still no plan. The problem with all of the above is the absence of a master plan for how our nation's populace can be living sustainably by 2050. All this spending is based on a continuation of those same wasteful habits in perpetuity. 

But a truly GREEN habitat will not be able to sustain habits like those - the kind that developed long  before  we knew what it would take to live in  harmony  with nature.
  • 275 million registered vehicles are on the road in the USA, although 250 million of them are parked at any given time. 
  • To accommodate all those vehicles, there are four million miles of roads in the USA, most of which are paved. 
  • The FAA is forecasting strong growth in domestic air travel in the USA over the next two decades - going up from 840.8 million passengers (2017) to 1.28 billion in 2038, an increase of more than 50%.
  • Obviously, all of the above means more houses will be built and more people will be buying more stuff.
Bear in mind that hardly any of these wasteful features of our current lifestyle would be part of a plan like Gratola, where I envision 80% less cars, 80% less roads and 90% less domestic air travel. And where all homes would be ultra-efficient and the new green economy would reward citizens for consuming less stuff. 

The Bottom Line. We must open the conversation about the perils of "willy-nilly" planet stewardship with the world's most influential people.  In last week's post , I appealed to a group of ten very well-known, capable and highly influential American billionaires.

Although it is not likely, I believe that if they all decided to instigate a serious global conversation about a "GRATOLA-like" solution to our sustainability crisis, that the entire world would be talking about it within weeks. And they wouldn't have to spend much of their combined net worth to make that happen.

To be clear, Gratola is the first of four envisioned corridors in the USA under the oversight of a future agency, AGRA (American Green Region Authority). When completed, those corridors would house some 300 million Americans in an area about the size of Oregon.

But, I am not trying to sell the GRATOLA idea to anyone. 

I am just trying to  use  the Gratola idea to help open the brains of highly influential leaders  everywhere w ho can build on the idea and eventually catch the  vision  necessary to bring the entire global community up to nature's requirements in far less time than anyone would've ever imagined.

As for the remaining 194 countries, I think they will need a model for how a truly sustainable living arrangement might look. And I am convinced that America is the place to create that model.

I often think about what the late W. Edwards Deming would do in a time like this - a time when billions of people are trying their best to do helpful things for the environment. 

But in the absence of a realistic plan, they have no chance of success. Here's what he says about "doing your best."  

The wisdom of "what to do" can only emerge after an overall global plan for a sustainable human habitat has been developed. And to my knowledge, no such futuristic habitat is even being discussed.

As a preview of next week's post that will feature Dr. Deming, I provide here the succinct advice he gave me privately in June of 1992 at George Washington University:

"Keep on learning. Study optimization of a system."     W. Edwards Deming

For now, I shall end this piece by providing links (in chronological order) to seven Gratola BSBs (out of  some  25 posted) that  may be helpful in jump-starting a process of thinking outside the box on this most crucial of all topics in human history. 

Read all twenty-five of them. That would take far less time than reading the Mueller Report and might be a great deal more satisfying.
As always, I will continue to focus on all of the above - in my research, my writing and my speaking.   

As for speaking, I am still looking 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 expenses and a modest honorarium.

Recently scheduled: An event with Dr. Joel Fuhrman at his   Golden Gate Summer Health Getaway  in California in July 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.

Or maybe we'll see you at the world's first Plant-Based EXPO next week. We'll be there under the 4Leaf flag and will be administering 4Leaf Surveys to the public. Click on this image below for more info:

What 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 to 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.

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:

Need  a speaker for your group?  My updated topic for 2019:  Saving our Civilization -- Earth as a "System"

 (now contains 5-minute video of me speaking in Tucson) 

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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