by Mark Goldes, CEO (Updated August 12,2008)
...the most completely satisfying structure of any
A monument to
man's ingenuity and creativity, this world famous steel suspension bridge
connects Brooklyn and Manhattan. It was
built between 1867 and 1883.
Inspired by the extraordinary film, Mindwalk, Bridgewalk is intended to provide constructive alternatives that offer hope of preventing the looming Global Warming apocalypse. The Manhattan Project was the incubator for nuclear weapons –
Bridgewalk is a path to what might be called The Brooklyn Energy
Project, the other side of the bridge. It is intended to open and
accelerate new paths, as well as provide new perspectives, toward
averting catastrophe and creating a more peaceful and prosperous planet.
The Manhattan Project was secret, centralized in a few locations, and
run by the government. Calls for a new Apollo type energy development
project depend on awaiting approval of a massive new government
program. The Brooklyn Energy Project is open, decentralized,
world-wide, and encourages the support of private, innovative,
Dr. James Hansen testified on June 23rd,
2008 that: “A wide gap has developed between what is understood about
global warming by the relevant scientific community and what is known
by policymakers and the public. …Frank assessment of scientific data
yields conclusions that are shocking to the body politic. …I can assert
that these conclusions have a certainty exceeding 99 percent.
have used up all slack in the schedule for actions needed to defuse the
global warming time bomb. …(Action is needed now) …Otherwise it will
become impractical to constrain atmospheric carbon dioxide, the
greenhouse gas produced in burning fossil fuels, to a level that
prevents the climate system from passing tipping points that lead to
disastrous climate changes that spiral dynamically out of humanity's
Changes needed to preserve creation, the
planet on which civilization developed, are clear. But the changes have
been blocked by special interests, focused on short-term profits, who
hold sway in Washington and other capitals.
argues) that a path yielding energy independence and a healthier
environment is, barely, still possible. It requires a transformative
change of direction in Washington in the next year.”
Health Organization statistics show that human-induced climate change
is already responsible for at least five million cases of illness and
as many as 150,000 deaths each year.
life on earth is threatened with extinction by a little publicized
lurking disaster – the release of huge quantities of methane trapped in
the Arctic tundra. Twice before, 55 million and 251 million years ago,
naturally occurring methane “burps”, possibly resulting from volcanic
eruptions, almost wiped out life on our planet. If humanity continues
to emit carbon as a result of the burning of fossil fuels, we are in
serious danger of triggering this irreversible event by the middle of
the current century.
urgent need is an emergency changeover, within a decade, to widespread
use of new sources of energy that eliminate the need for fossil fuels.
That goal is now in sight. Several firms, including our own
affiliate, Magnetic Power Inc. (MPI), are pioneering revolutionary,
inexpensive, renewable, energy conversion technology that can yield
cost-effective, mass-produced, alternatives in the immediate future.
Our own breakthrough technologies, can turn future cars into power
plants when suitably parked, and thereby help to eliminate the need to
build new coal burning and nuclear power plants.
John Atcheson has pointed out that a temperature rise of 11 degrees
Fahrenheit, substantially less than the upper figure predicted by
computer models from the burning of fossil fuels, could launch this
runaway effect. Earlier data suggested this could occur by 2050.
However, the reality is likely even worse, as the arctic regions are
showing the greatest temperature increases from greenhouse gas
emissions. Burning fossil fuels each year spews into the atmosphere the
equivalent of almost 17,000 volcanoes the size of the presently active
one in Hawaii. This catastrophic time bomb is more likely to explode
with every passing year.
It is even more
of a problem than water shortages, widespread hunger and disease,
melting arctic ice, the predicted flooding of major cities such as New
York, London, Tokyo and Miami and the increase in destructive
The question is no longer is climate change actually happening? But,
what do we do about it? We urgently need to cut our carbon dioxide
emissions to the point where the environmental scales start tipping
back - away from catastrophe. Avoiding further devastation may require
a 90% cut in CO2 emissions well before 2030. Our response needs to be
immediate, and decisive.
this new threat may serve to gradually cause terrorism to subside. It
is a classic axiom of political science that a people will unite
against an external enemy. Since everyone on earth is threatened by
continuing to burn fossil fuels, it is conceivable that the people of
this shrinking planet will begin to find common ground in a manner
previously thought to be unimaginable.
If we define toil as work not freely chosen, no matter how seemingly
simple, all work we choose, no matter how difficult, falls under the
psychological category of play. Another goal of Bridgewalk is to
encourage efforts to reduce the time people spend -- at work they have
not chosen -- to twenty hours each week. The money earned during the
remaining half of the nominal forty hour week will need to be replaced
with diversified investment income, ideally derived from investments
that reflect high ethical standards.
can think of a twenty hour week as five four hour days. Alternatively,
as a thought experiment, examine the possibility of two ten hour days –
with five days each week to employ and enjoy as you wish. Some of the
positive implications are obvious. One small example would be a
dramatic reduction in commute traffic.
Many, if not
most, people are trapped by mortgage payments, car payments, etc., in
jobs they do not love. There is a simple test: Would they continue to
do the same work without pay?
a few fortunate individuals have the freedom to learn who they are, and
more important, who they might become, given the time for both
spiritual reflection and inner growth, as well as genuine opportunities
to prosper and contribute to the greater material good of mankind; not
just in a narrow financial sense. Such truly free citizens would also
help to insure an ongoing, enlightened, political discourse, not easily
The late Robert Edmonds, an
iconoclastic economist, argued that excess wealth concentration is the
root cause of inflation and recession, thus broadening the ownership of
wealth may not simply be an ethical concern, but an economic necessity.
He designed incentives that could create what he termed “overfull”
employment, without inflation, accompanied by expanded ownership
opportunities, such as those initiated by the late Louis Kelso and the
Council for Economic and Social Justice, which can produce substantial
second incomes. As a consequence the toil component of the work week
would gradually diminish.
This program of accelerated evolution would initiate the most genuinely free society in human history.
is about leverage. Aikido is the most subtle of the martial arts. It
turns the energy of an opponent in such a way that small efforts
encourage enormous effects. When the Greek mathematician Archimedes
first defined the principle of leverage 23 centuries ago, he said,
“Give me a place to stand, and I will move the Earth.” Aikido is an
attitude that can leverage social, economic and political movement. The
Brooklyn Energy Project will enlist concerned allies and apply the
principle of Aikido to catalyze the urgently needed changes.
dashboard style scorecard might be developed to provide a daily, widely
diffused, set of indicators to monitor worldwide progress toward
Project goals, such as the daily progress toward reduction in the use
of fossil fuels. The intention is to make this scorecard as commonplace
as the reporting of stock exchange averages. Following a film or television or internet video introduction, four
quarterly annual celebrations, at the solstices and equinoxes, could be
encouraged on television and the internet. Each of these quarterly
events will have maximum impact if it launches a television/internet
series. These are intended to publicize practical new energy solutions,
with a very personal, emotional, touch, well laced with humor. For
example, one series might be called: Improbable Innovations
Incorporated. It would chronicle the human stories of those, such as
Nikola Tesla, whose work produces profound, constructive, change.
The combination, of celebrations and follow-on programs, constitutes an
informal curriculum - in the free university that the planet has
become. The objective is widespread understanding of the process of
learning how to learn, and the distinction between wisdom and mere
knowledge. In this way it should prove possible to rapidly accelerate
the changeover to non-fossil fuels, encourage charity and justice, and
help to heal the many wounds that threaten the world. The discussion of
these possibilities by a handful of individuals, during their bridge
walk from Manhattan to Brooklyn, can constitute the heart of a film, or
series of television or internet videos.
Goldes is founder and Chairman of Magnetic Power Inc. in Sebastopol,
California. Earlier, he founded SunWind Ltd. and began the non-profit
Aesop Institute. He previously was CEO of The Aesop Company, a
financial and economic consulting firm. Once a student of Electrical
Engineering, he earned BA and MA degrees at San Francisco State
University, and later served two years on active duty with the USAF,
culminating as a Senior Director of the Berlin Corridor control radar
in Germany. Afterwards, from 1956 thru 1958, he was a Fellow in the
Graduate Program in the History of Ideas, at Brandeis University. In
1960, he founded Emerson College of the Monterey Peninsula, and later
initiated the free university movement, which spread to at least 600
locations worldwide. The intent was to illuminate the fact that the
planet has become a universal university.
BRIDGEWALK to THE BROOKLYN ENERGY PROJECT is being born at
the non-profit Aesop Institute. Magnetic Power Inc. was created as a
For more information, contact Mark Goldes, CEO (707) 829-9391
© 2008 Magnetic Power Inc. All rights reserved.