This blog compiles all publications related to forestry, energy, affordable housing, women in trades, women in religion and women in society. This blog is filled with humor, sarcasms and reality investigations.

The politics of woods

I am an independent thinker. I don't belong to any political entity, organization, association, group, club or what so ever would represent a union of people. I don't follow any idea that would be driven by the need to belong to a group. I am a "free spirit", "esprit libre" in French. I work a lot, study a lot, I try to develop my own ideas, I may change ideas, I may listen to other people arguments, I may compromise, I may not compromise sometimes, I don't have any partisanship other than being a "free spirit" and an independent thinker. I have an idea of the kind of humanity I want, what kind of men, what kind of women, what kind of society, the way people work and live together, so as a consequence, I have political ideas, but my ideas are more on the level of the sciences of politics, it tends to reach an ideal. What means, like a journalist, that when I witness something, I tend to make it public and have a round table with the people while most the time, governments and international companies would prefer secrecy.

I have been working on social and environmental affairs since September 1992. I have a good experience of the field what means that all my investigations are part a research from reading and part a research from investigating on the field. An investigation is conducted by meeting people, interviewing, and drafting a map of contacts to link facts, events and people together. Someway, I work my researches like a detective.

I started my career in 1992 as an ethnographer. I was still a student, but aside of school, I had won a concourse to conduct a very different kind of learning. I went in Indonesia for four months to conduct a research on the field. Indonesia was still a military dictatorship. I was making a research about the traditional architecture in a country that was building its nationalism on the destruction of traditional assets. Before nationalism, colonialism has conducted its invasion on the destruction of forest and at the end of the dictatorship period, in 1998, International companies continued what colonialism had started with a spit of flavor from dictatorship. The rainforest of Sumatra has died and I have been its witness.

During my first travel in Indonesia in 1992, I could hear the orang-hutan singing in the forest. In 1995, I could only hear the sound of the trucks bringing the wood to pulp industries. When back after the tsunami of December 2004, Indonesia was "modern". The forest had been converted into agricultural land, people where going to the SUPER market, and everybody was quite comfortable with the idea that tradition had died, only survived the folklore.

As I said earlier, I am not partisan of anything and would not judge the desire of young Indonesian to access as much facilities as young Americans or young Europeans. I am not an ANTI or a PRO but I feel sad that young generations are OK with orang-hutan living in zoos. I feel sad that trees never grow old. I feel sad that the kind of humanity we have today is the SUPER humanization where man think himself as a God. Behind this idea of a man-like God, there is also the man who becomes sectarian with the elite at the top of the rest of the people.

I see in America something I never saw before, the struggle of massive immigration to try to reach the leadership. I see poor people, under-educated, SUPER religious, communitarian, representing the proletarian. Some of them have been long enough in the US and start to access the middle class when they become landlords. Above is a class of green cards who come in the US to make money, and above are the wealthiest native Americans. Way above are the tycoons and the stars from showbiz and sports.

In fact, it's not America that shocked me in the US, but my own behavior to survive in this country. I remember conversations to explain my rights as an author, as an artist, as a free spirit, as a woman, as a worker, as an immigrant and I am not a green card. My status in the US only grants me to survive after my free spirit ideas had become the target of some international companies. I came in the US with the belief that I would find a fair country, the leader of the world and as a leader, a country who knew to take its own responsibilities independently from Europe, both England and France. A country made by the people, for the people, not for a king or a government. A country made to last with reasonable leadership. The United-States are a constitutional republic. Its is not a democracy and this is THE reason why I came in the United-States because this constitutional Republic could grant me to stay independent and free. Freedom does not mean to destroy the order, but to be part of it with different and independent ideas. The United-States is a country where ideas have a voice and where the jurisdiction have a voice to help any individual to stand their rights against a majority, against a crowd, against tycoons and international businesses. I always use the interview of Aaron Russo (minute 16:10) to remind myself that I have rights because as an individual, immigrant, female, it is easy to forget. It is easy to become a slave and to get use of it.

The politic of wood is a difficult subject because there are different periods that bring to different evolutions and it is still taboo nowadays to talk about the forestry. There is a world of secrecy around the management of forest that raise tensions and rivalries from many actors of the politics. Among them, the influencers who belong to corporate entities and who pull the strings of land management. In France, I have observed many absurdities from the politics themselves. Many of them were tighten to China and its influence on the wood industry. Others were related to the development of biomas. Others to the activities of France in Africa. Others to the activities of France in the Middle East. At some point you discover that forestry can become a weapon in the hands of foreign governments that control and manage the wealth of your territory.

Forest is an asset as valuable as gold and money. It creates envies from the old territories who still battle on the US as they did in 1745 to keep the leadership on some sectors of the US economy. Globally, they will trigger their influence to fulfill their own needs. With the green movements, the "Paris Agreement", and modern media, the level of influence they have come to use loosen the ordinary man to understand the battle. Most people won't even see the economical war that reaches their door step and their door way.

If we compare the old territories to the map on the US forestry, the green land is the land of the old European traditions.

The same old territories were the land of slavery with a black concentration in the green broadleaf forest areas.

This is still in 2007 where US timber products comes from.

And this is still where extremely high poverty perseveres.

The map of poverty coincides with the map of slave states in 1854. The kind of slavery has changed but it has only changed nature. The way it affects people still be the same and mostly by the lack of a US politics on woods.

On the following video, raw materials are described as an asset, along with the slaves. Black people were considered an asset and they are still considered the same way.

They have become a live stock with a bulletin vote in a world where European countries enforce their new strategies through the ideology of a democracy. A democracy all made for finance and the rules made by Empires.

On the following map, we see the real war of empires, sawmills closing while wood pellets factories open. Big trees, hundred years old, are turn into bullets.

198 pellet plants are located in America, what means that gold is turn into nickel in order to flow in the market as low as could be and leave the road open to European influence on international politics and economy.

If you ask most US timber and hardwood associations, they will tell you that they are happy, because they don't have any alternatives but with a real politic on hardwoods, we would develop innovations, technologies, industries, employment, education, wealth, and we would give to the US territory the power to resist the financial influence from external powers. We would be independent from external powers and instead of being under influence, we would have the leadership to influence with new ideas and a new vision for the world of forestry.

I urge the American people to stand with their forests, to create the innovations that will turn a poor and undergraduate territory into a wealthy and creative land. Technologies exist, solutions exist, powers exist, markets exist but what we really need is the political impulse that will create the growth from American forestry.
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