# James Van Bruggen

Events coming up this weekend

Less than two weeks remain before the election. If you have time to volunteer this weekend, please contact a Democratic office to offer to help. Remember, there are many ways to help that do not involve phone calls to strangers or knocks on strangers’ doors.

If you live in the fourth or fifth Congressional districts, I encourage you to volunteer for Becky Greenwald or Rob Hubler. Or, contact the nearest field office for Barack Obama’s campaign.

One Iowa is also coordinating a “Weekend for Equality” volunteer effort. For more information, click here.

If nothing else, vote early so that other volunteers do not waste their time contacting you.

The other exciting event this weekend is another free concert in Des Moines by Justin Roberts and his Not Ready for Naptime Players. They’ll be playing in the lower court of Merle Hay Mall at 1 pm on Sunday. As I’ve written before, Justin’s music is fantastic, and his live shows are a lot of fun for kids and adults.

Please post a comment or send me an e-mail (desmoinesdem AT yahoo.com) if you know of another important event I’ve missed.

Thursday, October 23:

Becky Greenwald will visit State Center and Eldora with State Senate candidate Steve Sodders and State House candidate Tim Hoy. They will be in State Center at 2 pm in the home of Rita Figgins, 502 4th St. SE. They will be at the Ahoy Foundation, 1266 Edgington Ave in Eldora, at 4 pm.

Rob Hubler is holding a “Servant versus the King” event at 7 pm on the Morningside Campus – UPS Hall, Sioux City.

Tom Harkin Senator Tom Harkin will attend a phone bank at the AFSCME Hall, District 61, 4320 NW 2nd Ave, Des Moines, from 5:30 to 8:30 pm. RSVP at


Questions, Call Joseph O’Hern at 515-447-5888.

From the Department of Natural Resources:

A series of informational meetings to highlight proposed rule changes regarding public lands will be held in October in Des Moines, Dubuque and Spirit Lake. […] The primary intent of changing the rules is to clarify the application procedure, formalize the permit denial process and provide better management of public lands and waters. The proposed rules will also provide for potential penalties associated with the violation of permit conditions or failure to get a permit prior to construction on public lands. The proposed rules also provide for greater enforcement ability by the DNR in cases where private entities have encroached on public land.

Public lands are owned by the citizens of Iowa and include many lakes, 14 rivers, wildlife management areas, state forests and state parks.

The proposed rules do not pertain to docks which are covered under a separate chapter of Iowa law and have recently been revised. […]

“The meetings will be an opportunity for the public to learn about what changes are being proposed, but it is also an opportunity for us to hear from the public. Policy always benefits when the public is able to participate in the discussion and provide valuable input,” said Ford-Shivvers.

   * Thursday, Oct. 23rd; 6-8 pm at EB Lyons Interpretive Center, Mines of Spain State Park, 8991 Bellevue Heights, Dubuque.

For more information, contact Inga Foster at 515-281-8967.

Friday, October 24:

At 8 am, Rob Hubler will appear on the Conversations radio program with Dordt University’s President.

Becky Greenwald will attend a house party at 1027 Angela Drive Indianola at 6 pm.

Iowa Public Television will broadcast a debate between Senator Tom Harkin and Christopher Reed at 7 pm.

From Michael Richards (the full conference schedule is after the jump):


SEED Conference II:    A Wake-Up Call

Cedar Rapids, Iowa       October 24/25        2008

In 2008 we have been hit with two of the most challenging crises in the history of Iowa;

1.      The most extreme flooding in the entire history of our state.

2.      The most serious global financial crisis in history.

S.E.E.D Conference II will explore root causes of these two major crises.

S.E.E.D  provides  an effective, non-partisan, local citizen capacity to activate reality based, sustainable solutions.  

For thousands of years, the native ecology of Iowa was resilient, incredibly diverse with  immense capacity to absorb water and sustain life.  These natural systems have been dramatically disrupted through our uninformed policy and economic actions of the past 100 years.   SEED serves as a community catalyst to apply intelligent biomimicry for land, water and resource management to restore ecological resilience.

Iowa has the base economic resources of fertile land, bountiful water and hard working, honest people. Out of necessity, we are entering a time of real economy; We will conserve, scale down, simplify, save, and spend prudently for the things that we actually need.  We will now create a sustainable economy.    As “The Sustainable State”, Iowa can lead the way to restore sane national economic systems and intelligent political discourse.

The false economy is collapsing, but the real economy remains.  Did we forget how to make things that people need?  Can we no longer grow local food?  Did Iowa factories burn down?  Are our tools lost?  Did we run out of good people to work in farms, factories and offices? No!  The real economy remains as our sustainable foundation.  The  present financial crisis is simply the evaporation of the false and illusory world of derivatives, collateralized debt, index funds, credit default swaps, structured investment vehicles, and the hard-sell marketing of sub-prime mortgages and super-sized homes.  That house of cards has collapsed.  We will now build a sane and sustainable economy.

Six years ago as the Iraq war started, I launched Sustainable Ecological Economic Development (S.E.E.D.) to address root, causal factors of war; the deluded pursuit of the false and destructive economy of Empire rather than productive and sustainable Creative Enterprise.  Economies based on Empire exploit other nations, the natural environment and even our own citizens through usury, labor exploitation, and unfair wealth-transfer through corporate welfare and coercive bailouts. Excessive national debt is irresponsibly relegated to future generations.  Average U.S. Citizens have been reduced to powerless serfs, indentured by fear, complex webs of wealth-transfer taxation and oppressive debt to fuel the totally unsustainable military/industrial-Wall St. Machine. Our founding fathers would not recognize the State of our Nation.  The bright light of the American Dream is now shrouded with dark clouds of fear, greed and deception.  We need a wake-up call and restore our nation to ecological and economic health.      The S.E.E.D. Conference is a call to community action.

                                “Without vision, a people perish”-(Book of Proverbs)

Six years ago, I issued a common sense clarion call to my fellow Iowans to shift out of Empire into Sustainable/Ecological Enterprise.  That was a really good idea six years ago.  Today, this paradigm shift is an urgent and absolute necessity.  We invite you to build a Sustainable State.          

                                                                                           -Michael Richards, SEED Founder

Saturday, October 25:

If you have time, volunteer for a Democratic campaign or a progressive interest group this weekend. Web links are at the top of this post.

Rob Hubler’s campaign has the following public events scheduled:

1 p.m., Sioux City Rally for Real Representation.

Special Guests: Governor Tom Vilsack and Iowa Democratic Party Chairman Scott Brennan

The Sanford Community Center

1700 Geneva St, Sioux City, IA

2:30 p.m., Le Mars Rally for Real Representation.

Special Guests IDP Chairman Scott Brennan and HD 3 candidate TJ Templeton

Plymouth County Democrats office

27 Central Ave Northwest, Le Mars, IA

3:45 p.m., Orange City Rally for Real Representation.

Special Guests IDP Chairman Scott Brennan, HD 3 candidate TJ Templeton,

HD 4 candidate James Van Bruggen

De Koffiehoek & Bistro

819 Lincoln Pl SE, Orange City, IA

5 p.m., Sheldon Rally for Real Representation. Special Guest IDP Chairman Scott Brennan

Family Table Restaurant

710 2nd Ave, Sheldon, IA

7 p.m., Fundraiser and dinner with Special Guest IDP Chairman Scott Brennan

(free will offering graciously accepted)

Minerva’s Restaurant

1405 Highway 71 N, Okoboji, IA

The Motor Mill Foundation will host a benefit concert by Big Blue Sky at the Elkader Opera House at 7:30 p.m. on Saturday, October 25. There will be a guest appearance by singer/songwriter Dave Moore of Iowa City. Doors open for a silent auction at 6:30 p.m. Tickets are $15. All proceeds go to preservation of the Motor Mill Historic Site on the Turkey River near Elkader. For details, go to www.motormill.org, or call Larry Stone at 1-888-807-1828.

Sunday, October 26:

Rob Hubler will attend a House Party with Senator Mike and Connie Gronstal at noon. Special Guest IDP Chairman Scott Brennan. 220 Bennett Avenue,

Council Bluffs, IA

At 3 p.m., Hubler will hold a rally in Sioux City (details TBA)

Justin Roberts and the Not Ready for Naptime Players will perform at Merle Hay Mall in Des Moines (lower court) at 1 pm. Bring money even though the show is free, because you’ll want to buy some CDs.

Monday, October 27:

The Department of Natural Resources will be holding another public meeting to discuss proposed rule changes for public lands (see above) from 6-8 pm at the Dickinson County Community Building, 1602 15th St., in Spirit Lake. For more information, contact Inga Foster at 515-281-8967.

From the Sierra Club of Iowa’s e-mail loop:

CEDAR FALLS, Iowa — The Dry Run Creek Watershed Management Project will be the topic of a lecture hosted by the University of Northern Iowa Department of Earth Science at 4 p.m., Monday, Oct. 27, in Latham Hall, Room 125.

Rebecca Kauten, UNI alumna and urban coordinator in the Watershed Assessment and Monitoring Section of the Iowa Department of Natural Resources (DNR) will speak on “Water Quality in the Built Environment: Examples from a Local Watershed Project.” Her presentation will focus on Dry Run Creek, an impaired watershed, and efforts to implement best management practices in the drainage basin.

The lecture is free and open to the public. For more information, contact Jim Walters, professor and head, UNI Department of Earth Science, at (319) 273-2707.

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So that's why my eyes are itchy

Global warming is making spring come earlier in much of the United States:

And sneezes are coming earlier in Philadelphia. On March 9, when allergist Dr. Donald Dvorin set up his monitor, maple pollen was already heavy in the air. Less than two decades ago, that pollen couldn’t be measured until late April.

Pollen is bursting. Critters are stirring. Buds are swelling. Biologists are worrying.

“The alarm clock that all the plants and animals are listening to is running too fast,” Stanford University biologist Terry Root said.

Blame global warming.

The fingerprints of man-made climate change are evident in seasonal timing changes for thousands of species on Earth, according to dozens of studies and last year’s authoritative report by the Nobel Prize-winning international climate scientists. More than 30 scientists told The Associated Press how global warming is affecting plants and animals at springtime across the country, in nearly every state.

But look on the bright side: Iowa legislator Dwayne Alons (Republican, of course) says we don’t need to worry about global warming in this age of air conditioning and refrigeration technology.

By the way, James Van Bruggen is running against Alons in House District 4, which is in the northwest corner of the state.

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