||J.P. Morgan Loan (mind)
|| 53 sor
||meadows rovat (mind)
|| 118 sor
||Earth Times (mind)
|| 14 sor
|+ - ||J.P. Morgan Loan (mind)
Our effort to influence J.P. Morgan was successful: I received a letter from
their vice-president, indicating, that they will not finance any project in
Slovakia, which is either illegal or environmentally damaging.
Thanks for your earlier letters: I am sure, that if J.P. Morgan received only
my letter, I would not have received even a reply. This shows the value and
power of HL. Please give your support to the attached letter also, if you
agree with it.
Best regards: Bela Liptak
July 25, 1996
Margaret W. Southerland
60 Wall Street
New York, N.Y. 10260-0060
RE: Loan to Slovakia
Dear Ms. Southerland,
I am glad to learn that you are not involved in the financing of any part of
the illegal C variant, neither at its Cunovo, nor at its Gabcikovo end. As
you know, the pending lawsuit at The Hague requires, that the temporary C
variant be frozen until the conclusion of the lawsuit and therefore ANY
attempt to finalize it, would be illegal.
For the above reasons, I would be grateful, if you could state that none of
your loan is earmarked for finalizing the C variant and that you have the
means to make sure that this does not occur.
As to the environmental impact of the C variant: it has already damaged the
Szigetkoz wetlands, and if finalized, it would destroy it. Since that region
has survived since the last Ice Age, and because it is the common treasure of
all mankind, President Clinton has sent the Undersecretary of State, Eileen
B. Claussen (in June, 1996) to inspect the tragedy of the Szigetkoz. For that
reason I am copying her.
Awaiting your kind reply and reassurance.
cc: Undersecretary Eileen B. Claussen
|+ - ||meadows rovat (mind)
THE ENVIRONMENTAL TESTAMENT OF A CZECH FREEDOM FIGHTER
When Josef Vavrousek was killed last year, buried by an avalanche with his
19-year-old daughter Petra while hiking in the Tatra mountains, the Czech
people ached with sorrow. The budding green movement was especially
Vavrousek had been their leader. After his nation liberated itself from
communism, Vavrousek served as its environmental minister. Like his
Vaclav Havel, he fought for freedom and he did his best to bring humane
governance to his newly free republic.
Recently I received from Pavla Polechova of the Green Circle in Prague her
translation of an article Vavrousek wrote in 1993. Especially now that he is
gone, the article reads like a testament, a warning, a benediction and a work
program. It also shows how confused are the people who accuse
environmentalists of being green on the surface and red underneath.
knew first-hand the evils of a communist regime. That did not lead him to
conclude that free-swinging capitalism is the way to go. He sought earnestly
for a way to transcend both systems.
Here is my Americanization of Polechova's translation of Vavrousek's words.
outlines nine "relations" that modern society has got wrong and suggests nine
The relation of human beings to nature is one of depredation, based on the
assumption that nature is a bottomless resource for our whims and a passive
playing field for our purposes. The alternative: an awareness that we belong
to nature, a respect for life in all its forms, use of the environment only
within its carrying capacity, and a rapid transition to the sustainable use
The relation of individuals to society is either competitiveness and
individualism, based on the assumption that the egotistical behavior of
individuals somehow serves society as a whole, OR a false collectivity, based
on the assumption that individual interests should always be subordinated to
the whole. Either extreme leads to the concentration of power in the hands
a few, depriving the people of rights and freedoms. The alternative: a
between competition and cooperation and between individual and collective --
where the collective is not just family, community, state or nation, but
humanity as a whole.
The relation to goals for society and self is dominated by an obsession with
material growth, based on the belief (central to both capitalism and
that ever more production and consumption are evidence of progress.
Individually that goal translates into accumulating money and goods as the
measure of success. The alternative: qualitative development, focused on
human relationships and on science, culture, spirit, and intellect.
Our relation to freedom stresses rights while ignoring responsibilities. The
freedom of an individual is reduced to the freedom to make money and consume
goods. The alternative: respect the symmetry of freedom and responsibility,
both in our relationships with other human beings and with nature -- and
realize that there are more freedoms, and more important freedoms, than just
Our relation to knowledge overestimates the extent, depth, and reliability of
our knowledge and of our ability to foresee and regulate development. We
glorify rationality and narrow causal thinking. The alternative: take care
with our interventions into society or nature, expect consequences that are
foreseen, go more cautiously, complement the rational approach with intuition
and feelings. Bring together the scientific and the artistic ways of viewing
the world. (Vavrousek, by the way, was trained as an engineer.)
Because our relation to our own lives is one of alienation, we have a society
full of people who see no positive purpose for themselves and have never been
taught to correct unsuccessful or destructive behavior. The alternative:
positive role models and continuous, systematic correction of negative
against health and the environment.
Our relation to future generations is nonexistent, because of our short-term
focus. We draw down nonrenewable resources and spoil renewable ones, leaving
behind irreversible damage. Neither centralized planning nor the market has
demonstrated its ability to act with a long time perspective. The
alternatives: a commitment to future generations and sustainable resource
regulation of the market within the framework of law, with the law written
from a long-term viewpoint.
The relation to those who are different is one of intolerance. We try to
conflict by force, we undervalue other cultures and fail to learn from them,
come to them with aggression, expressed through war or economics or culture.
The alternative: better understanding of other kinds of experience,
that we can learn from others, mutual tolerance while conserving our own
The relation to government is overwhelmingly passive and resentful,
in the one-time socialist countries, but also in the Western democracies.
Civic participation is limited to casting a ballot once every four years --
that. (Pavla Polechova told me of the years of fake elections under
when you were required to go vote but there were no candidates you really
wanted to vote for. I told her we have the same situation, except that we're
not required to vote.) The alternative: a strongly participatory democracy
where elections offer real choices and every citizen can truly take part in
In one sense we all know these truths that Vavrousek articulated; in another
sense, we are strengthened every time they are spoken or written, because so
many people and especially so many leaders actively pursue their opposites.
The Czechs were not the only people who lost a strong moral compass with
Vavrousek's death. The loss was the world's.
(Donella H. Meadows is an adjunct professor of environmental studies at
|+ - ||Earth Times (mind)
meg egy majszolgatnivalo halozati zug....
From: Jerome Simpson
The Earth Times
An independent, nonprofit paper focusing on environment, sustainable
development, population, human-rights, trade and related issues. Published
twice monthly in New York and Geneva. Soon to be searchable, the site
currently is looking at Haiti's future, and whether or not the UN
Conferences are worth the $$$$.