Friday, July 4, 2008

Happy July 4th

Running a little behind on trash listings but i'll catch up tomorrow night for sure.

In the meantime, I thought I'd post the Decalration of Independence, which, within the context of it's time, was truly amazing and allows me the right to be doing what i'm doing.



IN CONGRESS, July 4, 1776.

The unanimous Declaration of the thirteen united States of America,

When in the Course of human events, it becomes necessary for one people to dissolve the political bands which have connected them with another, and to assume among the powers of the earth, the separate and equal station to which the Laws of Nature and of Nature's God entitle them, a decent respect to the opinions of mankind requires that they should declare the causes which impel them to the separation.

We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.--That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed, --That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new Government, laying its foundation on such principles and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their Safety and Happiness. Prudence, indeed, will dictate that Governments long established should not be changed for light and transient causes; and accordingly all experience hath shewn, that mankind are more disposed to suffer, while evils are sufferable, than to right themselves by abolishing the forms to which they are accustomed. But when a long train of abuses and usurpations, pursuing invariably the same Object evinces a design to reduce them under absolute Despotism, it is their right, it is their duty, to throw off such Government, and to provide new Guards for their future security.--Such has been the patient sufferance of these Colonies; and such is now the necessity which constrains them to alter their former Systems of Government. The history of the present King of Great Britain is a history of repeated injuries and usurpations, all having in direct object the establishment of an absolute Tyranny over these States. To prove this, let Facts be submitted to a candid world.

He has refused his Assent to Laws, the most wholesome and necessary for the public good.
He has forbidden his Governors to pass Laws of immediate and pressing importance, unless suspended in their operation till his Assent should be obtained; and when so suspended, he has utterly neglected to attend to them.
He has refused to pass other Laws for the accommodation of large districts of people, unless those people would relinquish the right of Representation in the Legislature, a right inestimable to them and formidable to tyrants only.
He has called together legislative bodies at places unusual, uncomfortable, and distant from the depository of their public Records, for the sole purpose of fatiguing them into compliance with his measures.
He has dissolved Representative Houses repeatedly, for opposing with manly firmness his invasions on the rights of the people.
He has refused for a long time, after such dissolutions, to cause others to be elected; whereby the Legislative powers, incapable of Annihilation, have returned to the People at large for their exercise; the State remaining in the mean time exposed to all the dangers of invasion from without, and convulsions within.
He has endeavoured to prevent the population of these States; for that purpose obstructing the Laws for Naturalization of Foreigners; refusing to pass others to encourage their migrations hither, and raising the conditions of new Appropriations of Lands.
He has obstructed the Administration of Justice, by refusing his Assent to Laws for establishing Judiciary powers.
He has made Judges dependent on his Will alone, for the tenure of their offices, and the amount and payment of their salaries.
He has erected a multitude of New Offices, and sent hither swarms of Officers to harrass our people, and eat out their substance.
He has kept among us, in times of peace, Standing Armies without the Consent of our legislatures.
He has affected to render the Military independent of and superior to the Civil power.
He has combined with others to subject us to a jurisdiction foreign to our constitution, and unacknowledged by our laws; giving his Assent to their Acts of pretended Legislation:
For Quartering large bodies of armed troops among us:
For protecting them, by a mock Trial, from punishment for any Murders which they should commit on the Inhabitants of these States:
For cutting off our Trade with all parts of the world:
For imposing Taxes on us without our Consent:
For depriving us in many cases, of the benefits of Trial by Jury:
For transporting us beyond Seas to be tried for pretended offences
For abolishing the free System of English Laws in a neighbouring Province, establishing therein an Arbitrary government, and enlarging its Boundaries so as to render it at once an example and fit instrument for introducing the same absolute rule into these Colonies:
For taking away our Charters, abolishing our most valuable Laws, and altering fundamentally the Forms of our Governments:
For suspending our own Legislatures, and declaring themselves invested with power to legislate for us in all cases whatsoever.
He has abdicated Government here, by declaring us out of his Protection and waging War against us.
He has plundered our seas, ravaged our Coasts, burnt our towns, and destroyed the lives of our people.
He is at this time transporting large Armies of foreign Mercenaries to compleat the works of death, desolation and tyranny, already begun with circumstances of Cruelty & perfidy scarcely paralleled in the most barbarous ages, and totally unworthy the Head of a civilized nation.
He has constrained our fellow Citizens taken Captive on the high Seas to bear Arms against their Country, to become the executioners of their friends and Brethren, or to fall themselves by their Hands.
He has excited domestic insurrections amongst us, and has endeavoured to bring on the inhabitants of our frontiers, the merciless Indian Savages, whose known rule of warfare, is an undistinguished destruction of all ages, sexes and conditions.

In every stage of these Oppressions We have Petitioned for Redress in the most humble terms: Our repeated Petitions have been answered only by repeated injury. A Prince whose character is thus marked by every act which may define a Tyrant, is unfit to be the ruler of a free people.

Nor have We been wanting in attentions to our Brittish brethren. We have warned them from time to time of attempts by their legislature to extend an unwarrantable jurisdiction over us. We have reminded them of the circumstances of our emigration and settlement here. We have appealed to their native justice and magnanimity, and we have conjured them by the ties of our common kindred to disavow these usurpations, which, would inevitably interrupt our connections and correspondence. They too have been deaf to the voice of justice and of consanguinity. We must, therefore, acquiesce in the necessity, which denounces our Separation, and hold them, as we hold the rest of mankind, Enemies in War, in Peace Friends.

We, therefore, the Representatives of the united States of America, in General Congress, Assembled, appealing to the Supreme Judge of the world for the rectitude of our intentions, do, in the Name, and by Authority of the good People of these Colonies, solemnly publish and declare, That these United Colonies are, and of Right ought to be Free and Independent States; that they are Absolved from all Allegiance to the British Crown, and that all political connection between them and the State of Great Britain, is and ought to be totally dissolved; and that as Free and Independent States, they have full Power to levy War, conclude Peace, contract Alliances, establish Commerce, and to do all other Acts and Things which Independent States may of right do. And for the support of this Declaration, with a firm reliance on the protection of divine Providence, we mutually pledge to each other our Lives, our Fortunes and our sacred Honor.

The 56 signatures on the Declaration appear in the positions indicated:

Column 1
Button Gwinnett
Lyman Hall
George Walton

Column 2
North Carolina:
William Hooper
Joseph Hewes
John Penn
South Carolina:
Edward Rutledge
Thomas Heyward, Jr.
Thomas Lynch, Jr.
Arthur Middleton

Column 3
John Hancock
Samuel Chase
William Paca
Thomas Stone
Charles Carroll of Carrollton
George Wythe
Richard Henry Lee
Thomas Jefferson
Benjamin Harrison
Thomas Nelson, Jr.
Francis Lightfoot Lee
Carter Braxton

Column 4
Robert Morris
Benjamin Rush
Benjamin Franklin
John Morton
George Clymer
James Smith
George Taylor
James Wilson
George Ross
Caesar Rodney
George Read
Thomas McKean

Column 5
New York:
William Floyd
Philip Livingston
Francis Lewis
Lewis Morris
New Jersey:
Richard Stockton
John Witherspoon
Francis Hopkinson
John Hart
Abraham Clark

Column 6
New Hampshire:
Josiah Bartlett
William Whipple
Samuel Adams
John Adams
Robert Treat Paine
Elbridge Gerry
Rhode Island:
Stephen Hopkins
William Ellery
Roger Sherman
Samuel Huntington
William Williams
Oliver Wolcott
New Hampshire:
Matthew Thornton


Thursday, July 3, 2008

Better Hand Towel Dispenser

I pulled this off of the No Trash Challenge website, a really cool site that follows a month long attempt to create no trash whatsoever for a month.  And i thought what i was doing was tough!  Check it out.

How cool would it be if all dispensers of paper towels (and other products) had something like this built into it that immediately made you think about the consequences of your consumption habits.

Very Cool.



Tuesday, July 1, 2008

Fu of the Week

Epic Fu asked to come out to the house about a month ago and the video they shot went up today. Apparently I'm the Fu of the week, which sounds kind of cool. I'm hoping there's some sort of compostable statue that goes with that. You can also check out the shorter cut here and the whole show here.



Take The Challenge!

OK, I've officially made it six months now and I'd like to celebrate by sharing the love.  I'm putting this out there to see who wants to join the insanity and hang on to your garbage like I do. That's right, alienate your friends, confound your neighbors and scare your spouse just like me (OK, that hasn't really happened). Now I'm not talking about six months, just a week, and I'm perfectly happy to tailor it to whatever you feel comfortable doing (like I'd have any idea anyway).

If you want to go whole hog and fill the basement, have at it, and let us hear how it goes. How about just saving all of your recycling, or maybe just your plastic bottles? Or, if you don't feel like actually hoarding, keep a running tally for a week and let us know in the comments what you came up with. 

Everyone is going to be different in how they do things, but for me, I keep a bag on the basement door and everything goes in there.  When I get a chance (hopefully every night but not always), I pull it all out, note it and where it goes, and pop it in the basement.  If you're keeping a list, maybe just keep a pad with you, and note down what you threw out and when, and where it will end up (recycling, landfill, re-purpose).

The main thing is to remember that this is about understanding your consumption habits and nothing else.  Whether you keep everything or not is not what's important, but recognizing the footprint you are leaving behind is.  Hopefully, it'll change your thinking a bit and you'll start making better and smarter choices from here on in.

So who's with me?



Week 25 Pics - Half A Years Worth of Trash

There you have it, half a years worth of garbage and recycling.  Certainly not the average joes, but this average joes.  Let's hope the second half fits as well as the first

125 bottles and jars.
20.5 lbs of misc. recycling.
2.5 lbs of plastic bags and 9 lbs of e-waste/hazardous waste.

29 lbs of actually landfill bound garbage.

10.5 lbs of cardboard boxes.
And last but not least, the greatest amount of waste created in the house (or any for that matter) 46 lbs of paper - receipts, newspapers, bills and the occasional junk mail that sneaks through.


Monday, June 30, 2008

Day 181 - Monday 6/30/08

Today's Haul:

  • 1 tea bag - worms
  • 1 tea bag wrapping w/chewed gum - garbage
  • 1 tea bag staple - garbage
  • 1 used q-tip - worms
  • 1 muffin holder - worms
  • 1 ice cream bar wrapper - garbage
  • 1 ice cream bar stick - worms


US Mayors Vote To Ban Tax Payer Purchased Bottled Water

This is a huge step forward as 250 Mayors around the US have agreed to stop buying bottled water for their employees. According to the article in the Herald Tribune, that cities spend about $70 million a year to dispose of plastic water bottles. Wow. It's high time people started waking up to the fact that these things are not economical on any level and basically make no sense.



Corn or Beans?

A quick update on my friend Marcus and Joel who are sailing across the Pacific on a raft named Junk. Apparently keeping the canned goods on the side of the boat was a bit of a mistake!


Cloth vs Paper vs Air, How To Dry Your Hands

An interesting little article from Seattle on the choices in hand drying. Just goes to show you how complicated some of these things can be.



Sunday, June 29, 2008

Day 180 - Sunday 6/29/08

Today's Haul:

  • 1 chips bag - garbage
  • 1 plastic nuts bag - recycle
  • 1 cardboard top from nuts package - recycle


Day 179 - Saturday 6/28/08

Today's Haul:

  • 2 styrofoam plates - recycle
  • 3 paper napkins - worms
  • 1 plastic mayonaisse jar PETE 1 - recycle
  • 1 sticky cover from netflix package - garbage
  • 1 pasta box - recycle


Day 178 - Friday 6/27/08

Today's Haul:

  • 1 set of film sides - recycle/worms
  • 1 staple from film sides - garbage
  • 2 pieces chewed gum in wrappers - garbage
  • 1 muffin paper holder - worms
  • 1 call sheet for next days work - worms