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July/August 2000 Planet Main
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The Planet Newsletter

by Jenny Coyle

Forget Blue Chips: Buy

Don't invest in wobbly dot-coms. Instead, put your hard-earned cash into the dot-orgs.

That's the tongue-in-cheek advice in a New York Times commentary by Andy Borowitz, author of "The Trillionaire Next Door: The Greedy Investor's Guide to Day Trading." And he makes some salient points.

Borowitz praises the predictability of dot-orgs. "The nonprofit organizations promise no profits and consistently deliver on that promise," he says. "If people ask when the dot-orgs will turn a profit, there's a simple answer: 'When pigs fly.'"

He quotes Buster H., a full-time day trader, saying, "Dot-orgs may earn nothing, but when you've lost as much money as I have, nothing starts to look like something." awaits his investment.

This Dot-Org Has a New Board

At its May 19 meeting in San Francisco, the Sierra Club Board of Directors welcomed newly elected members and chose a slate of officers for 2000.

Re-elected by the Club's general membership in April were directors Phil Berry of Lafayette, Calif.; Michael Dorsey of Ann Arbor, Mich.; and Chad Hanson of Sierra Madre, Calif. New directors are Robbie Cox of Chapel Hill, N.C., and Lisa Renstrom of Charlotte, N.C.

Cox was chosen to serve as board president. Cox, a board member from 1993 to 1999, served as president twice. He's also a past recipient of one of the Club's highest awards, the William Colby Award for outstanding leadership, and helped develop the Club's Project ACT and the Sierra Club Training Academy.

Other officers are Nick Aumen of Lake Park, Fla., vice president; Chuck McGrady of Flat Rock, N.C., treasurer; Charlie Ogle of Eugene, Ore., secretary; and Jennifer Ferenstein of Missoula, Mont., fifth officer. Continuing on the board are Anne Ehrlich of Stanford, Calif.; Rene Voss of Washington, D.C.; Larry Fahn of Mill Valley, Calif.; Kim Mowery of Providence, R.I.; and Michele Perrault of Lafayette, Calif.

During the week of the board elections, director David Brower, a Club member for nearly 70 years and a former executive director, tendered his resignation, which was accepted by the board with regrets. No replacement was selected by press time.

Club Could Make A Millionaire

Dan Lavery, program assistant with the Club's lands team in Washington, D.C., wasn't the only one who caught the following item, but he was the first to admit in writing that he was watching television on June 6. That's when the $64,000 question on "Who Wants to be a Millionaire?" was:

What organization did John Muir found in San Francisco in 1892?
(a) Boy Scouts of America
(b) Audubon Society
(c) Sierra Club
(d) YMCA

The contestant had to think a while, but he got it right.

Not a Millionaire, But a Chapter Chair

Okay, so you're not a millionaire. But.... "Who Wants to be a Chapter Chair?" That was the name of the game for chapter chairs at their annual training meeting in San Francisco in May.

Wannabe game-show host Kevin Kosik, the Club's director of member services, emceed their version of the hit television show. What stumped every team was the tie-breaking round in which they had to put in chronological order four Sierra Club achievements, starting with the earliest:

(a) The Club plays a leading role in the passage of legislation designating 6.8 million acres of wilderness in 18 states.
(b) The Club collects 1.2 million signatures on the Environmental Bill of Rights and successfully defeats congressional proposals to dismantle the Clean Water Act and the Endangered Species Act.
(c) The Club plays a leading role in passage of the Alaska National Interest Lands Conservation Act, protecting 103 million acres.
(d) The Club gathers 1.1 million signatures in support of ousting Interior Secretary James Watt.


He Makes James Watt Look Good

"Wise-use" advocates are gleefully quoting passages from "Hard Green: A Conservative Manifesto," a new book by Peter Huber, a Manhattan Institute fellow and Forbes magazine columnist.

Turns out Sierra Club members can quote him, too, as an example of why we work so hard to protect the environment. Says Huber in his new book: "Cut down the last redwoods for chopsticks, harpoon the last blue whale for sushi, and the additional mouths fed will nourish additional human brains which will soon invent ways to replace blubber with olestra and pine with plastic. Humanity can survive just fine in a planet-covering crypt of concrete and computers."

Unfortunately, he's serious.

Take Note

Vicky Husband, conservation chair of the Sierra Club of British Columbia, will receive the prestigious Order of BC Award from Premier Ujjal Dosanjh in June. Husband is known for her tireless efforts to protect ancient temperate forests and wildlife areas.

The Maine Chapter will host Women's Summer Encampment 2000 on August 25 through 27 at Camp Vega. Workshops, speeches, rallies and campfire talks will serve to inspire women of all ages to work for a healthy environment. Singer and songwriter Libby Roderick will perform. Deadline for registration is Aug. 1. Check out or contact Catherine Corkery at

Oh yeah - the answer to the "Who Wants to Be a Chapter Chair?" quiz: (c),(d),(a),(b).

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