Fuck Environment California

by B.J. Delas Armas on 7/16/2003 09:19:00 PM 0 comments Print this post

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Do Not Support Environment California

Let me just say from the onset that these people, Environment California released me within less than a week. I simply did not meet their quota because I did not think I had to. The shady people of Environment California didn't even know there was a quota to meet within a few days. I was lead to believe that I had all the time in the world to improve and become a better canvasser, but they did not give me the chance. As a result, they have fractured my confidence towards accomplishing anything quickly. So much for caring for the people (well they did before my fatal 3rd day acting as if I was the best thing since sliced bread; I didn't even exist during the 3rd day). I'm against the organization for what they did to me and what they are doing to other people, an not necessarily against the environmental issues. So do not take this post as an excuse to be apathetic towards social issues. This is a post directed at Environment California, and Environment California only. The stuff in this post is through my own observation.


In a nutshell, here's what's wrong about them in my eyes (with wrong meaning that they hurt the consumers and are not really progressive thinkers at all):
1) They are yet another business first, consumer second organization
2) They confuse and sucker you into joining their group
3) They make you lose the bigger picture; you should decide what you spend your money on
4) It's highly ineffective

Environment California is a group of lobbyists ranging from college students to career advocates that barge into your neighborhood and ask you for money and signatures door-to-door. Here's their sales pitch:

"Hi. How are you?

My name is __________ and I'm with Environment California! We're the statewide environmental group.

Right now we're working to fight air pollution here in _________. *

Unfortunately, almost 90% of the state's electricity comes from dirty power plants. We know that pollution from these plants causes asthma, birth defects, and lung disease.

We could dramatically reduce this pollution if we got more of our electricity from cleaner sources like solar power, so we're working to pass a law that would make solar more affordable.

The utility companies just want to build more dirty power plants, and they've got some powerful lobbyists...but we can definitely win if we build enough public support, and that's why we're out here today.

Here's our statement of support (hand over clipboard, point to statement). This outlines our work.

The best way for you to support this effort tonight is to join as a member of Environment California. We suggest a contribution of $60 for the year, because it's our members that give us the resources it takes to win.

With your membership, we'll send you a newsletter during the year to keep you posted on our progress. And the best way to contribute is with a check."

*connotes Southern California, Los Angeles or town.

First of all, they make the issue confusing as to what exactly are people's options in supporting their assembly or congressmen. They give the impression that you have to join their group as the only alternative to fighting the organization. Secondly, Their canvassers are not told to research the issues and be informative, but rather be salespeople. It's an elitist organization in itself as the best salespeople or "fundraisers" stay on and canvass with beginners holding scripts every day. They do not fight for the underrepresented. The people who do not have a script and talk about it with enthusiasm are the more experienced salespeople, which means they've lost some genuine or realness. Thirdly, they are the traditional type of environmentalists and they do not recognize racism and classism as issues to the cause like the new and improved environmental justice movements. Environment is what people make of it and they deserve to decide what to do with it without being misled. Don't impulsively throw away 15 dollars for becoming a member of their group. Finally, the kicker is they will ask you for 60 dollars and eventually make their way down to $5-15. My advice: Just take some information from them, pick their brains (at least the experienced ones) and scram.

Don't support Environment California or at least do not fork over more than 10 dollars when they come to your door because you will regret it and this organization doesn't give a shit. CALPIRG, Western Service Workers, I still support because they are people/consumer-based. And CALPIRG, Western Service Workers, are disassociated with this group. Those consumer-based organizations are not as exclusive and cutthroat as Environment California, who heavily target middle to upper class people (that means watch out if you live in Santa Monica, Valencia, Manhattan Beach, Long Beach, Pasadena, Agoura Hills).

There are reasons CALPIRG distanced itself from Environment California as a different entity on which I am heavily speculating: 1) Environment California is not really for the consumer and their rights, which is what CALPIRG does 2) CALPIRG does not canvass, and try to keep together a fake smile 3) Who gives a shit about pollution ? A little bit of pollution in the lungs helps build strength in the lungs anyway. 4) CALPIRG actually empowers the underdogs and gives voice to those who do not have any, whereas Environment California smothers the big dogs in advocation of the opinion that they are working for the people.

In comparison with my experience as a Western Service Workers canvasser, I found myself not caring for the people as much as I thought they needed be. This Environment California group is definitely about business and making a lot of money instead of for the people because these canvassers get paid $275-475 a week depending on how much they sell, which is where half the funding from Environment California goes. They are about getting to as many houses as possible. In fairness to them, the canvassers work hard going to about 100 houses a day. However, as one of their leaders told me, no one would canvass if it was not profitable. To sustain profits and remain a business, they garner up an issue every season of the year. Another ringleader talked about how car pollution accounted for 70% of the pollution in the air rather than the actual power plants. So everyone just get a Honda Civic or Toyota Prius and call it a day. But right now the moneymaker is the Solar Homes Bill, and they're drumming up support for that. The solar bill is in assembly now.

If you are interested in passing the solar bill, you can write to assemblywoman Carol Liu of Pasadena and George Nakano of Manhattan Beach for example. You can find and contact other assembly members by visiting this site. Or if you feel like appealing to the national government you can contact Barbara Boxer or Senator Feinstein. You could also contact the U.S. House of Representatives. For the California state government, you can find your state senator here and find your senator's e-mail dress here.

Don't let Environment California think for you. It's largely ineffective anyway. Sure they will point out victories in the environment, but they never state their involvement with the victories. Ask em about that.

People don't need to be pressured into giving up money for something that they do not have the full truth about.

People deserve to know and find the truth on their own. Take my observations however way you want to, except as libel or any kind of tort because my info was just taken from observation and my own opinion and instinct.

I felt like I just got my 6th criminal star on GTA 3. . .

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