“No Fear” – A Call to Protesters

Dear America,

I have hated you for most of my life since the time you chose not to stand with the national union strike of 1981, when families stood for YOU to demand political honesty and fair wages. I was a thirteen year old kid watching national news media spin negative stories about my own striking father, having neighbors turn against us and feeling the all too powerful government threatening us with arrest. As working class union members, most of whom were Vietnam Veterans, the families of 1981 had the guts  to risk EVERYTHING and stage that illegal strike against the United States Government, an act that could put them in prison, because they  believed in something big – a government with integrity.

Our lives fell apart and the level and anger I felt toward you for not standing with us, especially the activists of the 1960s and 70s, grew profoundly through the years. I watched how Reagan’s polices of greed and exploitation also grew, his trickle down economics, union busting and ego drive turned a good part of this country into the working poor and billionaire class. I watched the lies emanate from the media and wars ravage countries. Later I learned about President Jimmy Carter’s energy policies when an honest president actually tried to stop climate change and stand up to OPEC. And I find it hard today not to scream each and every day “why didn’t you stand with us?”

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That’s history that can’t be changed, but I do have a message for all Americans today – we have work to do. And don’t be afraid. Though that anger may still reside in me, there is also another feeling of boldness . . . and to never be driven by fear. That which we, the families of the 1981 union, lost, has actually emboldened me today to recognize it’s not about what you lose in life, it’s about what you gain.

Everything that we lost during that strike, including my child hood dreams, resulted in something grander and bigger than “little me”, understanding the underling principle of what it means to be a responsible citizen in a democracy and what our power is when we collect. This is not about what the government can do for us, it’s about “we, the people” can do by uniting and standing. That union strike in 1981 by a mere 21,000 families threatened the entire US economy and put the fear of god into our politicians because they began to understand our true power. And it’s likely one of the great reasons that strike is not taught in our schools or mentioned much in the media today.

I also learned about the media and the favoritism it gave the government at that time, making the union look like nothing but criminals. Let it be known today that Ronald Reagan, the very president who had lured the union vote and then busted them across the country, today stands in the US Labor Hall of Fame. No political democrat or many newspapers spoke out about this three years ago when he was inducted. Let it also be known that Congresswoman Nancy Pelosi put the Reagan statue in Washington DC about ten years ago – to represent the State of California with zero public input opportunity.

We have big work to do, as the people. This fight today is not just a fight between the left or the right, or even black or white. It is a fight for integrity, for peace, for unity and for a government we can trust. But no government of integrity can build until we, the people have demonstrated our own integrity and that we’ve been lacking as a nation.

My message – don’t be afraid to stand. Don’t be afraid of material losses. They are all meaningless, as I learned because your gains are much more powerful.

It’s time we take back our democracy and stand by our brothers, sisters and children for a new era. An era of integrity. WE can do it.

Time for Peace – We Have the Answer

Dear America,

I hear your outrage. I feel the pain and I see us all crying for something better. I hear the call for peace and unity while more violence begins to rage. I’m asking kindly, please stop. There is a better way.

As a white woman, I have also been shamed online. I am told I have no voice in the matter. I cannot state an opinion without sounding racist. But, at the risk of of it all, I intend to speak my mind, because we women have been shamed for centuries if we speak our mind.  I refuse to stop speaking my mind even if it kills me.

All violence is unacceptable. As Jimmy Carter also said, war is an unnecessary evil. The greatest leaders – Ghandi, MLK – advocated nonviolence. There is a better way. Kindly, hear me out, please.

The violence against George Floyd surely was a racial agenda, but it was more than that. It’s based on a deep seeded Patriarchal, controlling disease that has been growing in our country and being accepted. We created it. We have fed it and we are all responsible for it. And we must stop it.

Be mindful, there were three other officers accused in George Floyd’s death. Were they all white? I don’t think they were. We have a greater problem with male identity and value of violence, the kind of power and control that has become acceptable by men. This has been a disease perpetuated by media, schools and validated and it’s also being sold to our children, our boys, through video games for billions of dollars a year today.

HBO and other media outlets ran programming for years about cops and the violence on streets, hyper sensationalizing street violence, luring people into cultivating a culture of what a cop life is all about. Take that type of media and compare it to a program like Andy Griffith Show and you can see how violent we have become in our society, how the mask of a man’s identity has shifted in the media. Add that the level of military gain and might, mixed with forty years worth of wars, has created, as President Jimmy Carter said again, “America is the most violent country in the world.”

We weren’t always like this. We had made major shifts in the 1960s and 1970s with tackling civil rights, feminism, Indigenous Rights, Latino Rights, Labor Rights and more. A black man, Frederick Douglas, ran on the same presidential ticket as Victoria Woodhull in 1872. We can get there again. We’re smarter this time.

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You’ll ask who am I to talk about this? I come from a national community that striked against the federal government, President Ronald Reagan. I know the fear of waiting for the FBI to take you away. The historic national union striker of 1981 was comprised of 21,000 families who were willing to lose their livelihoods to demand political honesty and fair wages. You’ve probably never heard of the historic strike, likely because it is one of the most powerful and most dangerous stories in our nation’s modern history – how 21,000 families could take down the American economy. Air traffic controllers refused to go to work to stand for the American people and they were both white and black. 

When you consider most of those union strikers were Vietnam Veterans, the story becomes more meaningful. Yes, they lost their jobs, but they maintained their integrity, proved to be nonviolent and didn’t allow someone’s lack of integrity ruin their own.

48427782_2250818844952373_558543986990514176_oToday those 1981 union families are the only ones who get to claim they stood up to the most fascist president of the United States who created climate change, knocked down unions and created the divisiveness in today’s economic inequality, creating the working poor. These union members, both white and black, had the guts to stand up to a dangerous president of the United States WITH NO VIOLENCE. That’s integrity, because it makes everyone else in this nation look like shit. Why didn’t you stand with them? With us? Why did you shame the strikers of 1981? They were shamed nationally by regular people on the streets when they were putting their entire lives on the front line for you and your families, for political honesty in our country, along with the demands of fair wages.

Journalist Thom Harman makes the claim that had President Carter gotten a second term, it’s possible we wouldn’t have climate change today. Carter rolled out the First Green Deal of 1979 – and not many politicians, journalists, educators or environmentalists have the guts to say it. Why? It makes them look like shit. Where have they been for the last forty years and why don’t they talk about Carter’s First Green Deal of 1979?

Let me remind you, we have all been sleeping and have been manipulated. This violence on our streets today is the same kind of violence our country has been exerting on other countries, using the most vulnerable Americans, against unarmed civilians, women and children, so you can drive your fancy car, have a fancy phone or feel like a big shot. Yes, we are all guilty – you and me, because we have failed to stop this violence for forty years. Why do I say forty and not centuries? Because dead people can’t change. It’s up to the living to stop the cycle. We’ve read our history books. Our power today is to stop the cycle.  Full stop.

Outrage? Yes, there has been a tremendous amount of outrage. There is outrage by our youth as our oceans fill with pollution at an inconceivable level, the very location where most of our oxygen comes from, while plastic producing companies (oil businesses) make billions of dollars. Yes, there has been outrage, while children are being locked up and America still has not come clean with the wars of Central America, when the most vulnerable civilians, Mayan women and children, were slaughtered.

That’s on white people, black people, Chinese people, Immigrant people and anyone else who lives in America. That’s on living Americans. There are NO excuses.

It’s been the greatest propaganda of forty years, my friends. “The American Dream” has been perverted from the pure concepts of JFK and MLK, those words to pursue triumph, justice, truth to the absurd dreams of having big houses, big cars and money. What has happened to us? Who have we become? And why did we allow “us” to become this way? Because we all got trapped in the money game, fancy shoes, looking good. No, we all look like shit and we ALL gave the power to the corporations and those who were pushing the propaganda on us.

We are all guilty. We can humble ourselves to recognize we have also squandered our democracy in the name of competing with one another for wealth, we must recognize we allowed this to happen right under our noses and we MUST take responsibility. Once we do, we are free. We are all free.

There are those on the outside laughing at us fighting amongst ourselves. We look ridiculous, petty, violent and more importantly, lack the intelligence to unionize as “the people.” When together, we are strong and we can starve this massive giant that has squandered our rights and our future. We have the power – but we must not work against one another. “We are the people.”

As a woman, I have seen and felt injustices. And, I am no different than you.

And there have been many who stood for others with no recognition today. Let us find those who can inspire us all to be stronger, kinder and resilient as we starve the giant and rise “as the people.” We have the answer.

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Welcome to the Corona Age & Goodbye to the Reagan Era.

We have an opportunity to step into a new age, a shift of consciousness and chance to heal, ourselves and our planet. And it has nothing to do with politicians OR billionaires.

“We, the people” proved to ourselves these last months that “we, the people” can make the needed sacrifices, as President Jimmy Carter had called for in the late 1970s – sacrifices to curb our materialistic desires, commercialism and money agendas in order to make a difference. Carter had spoken in the 1970s about an energy shift, a move from big oil use to sustainable wind and solar. But, we can take it to a higher level now – we can heal ourselves and Planet Earth after forty years and understand his words more vibrantly today than ever before  –  “it’s the moral equivalent of war” but based on construction rather than destruction.

It’s the calling now. We’ve come this far. Let’s push it far, like brothers and sisters, together.

And one day, our kids will look back at our generation and say “wow, look what they did!”

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Celebrate – President Jimmy Carter

We’re on!

Just launched! –    Youtube Channel with regular updates about President Jimmy Carter’s legacy related to human rights, peace, health, energy policies and history. . . we have not forgotten!

Let’s remember the kind of values we honor and put a smile on our faces, just like Carter here, and plan some national parties to honor a living president.

This will be our fourth year in Marin County with city and county wide Proclamations, California Resolutions, musicians, restaurants, bars and speakers, including ABC Host Spencer Christian, environmental activist April Peebler!

What’s more? We’ve called out some of our favorite citizens with birthdays in October, too, those who remind us of our power, as the people! Happy birthday to Peter Coyote, Angela Alioto, Kathleen Russell, Jose Neto and and. . . John Lennon, too!

Let’s get the party going! We’re planning events, including a one hour special on Marin TV, to be announced soon!

President JImmy Carter!
Get the party started – http://www.jimmycarterjamboree.org

Meeting with the Iranian Delegation in India – A Peace Movement?

Join us for my talk following the Alwar International Film Festival in India where a peace movement has been seeded.


AND we did it! Our film The Man Behind The White Guitar received an award – Best Bio Pic!

A huge congratulations to the international team for creating this wonderful project to help share the values of kindness, generosity and humility with the power of the White Guitar! THANK YOU!

We Got Exploited – AGAIN, But Maybe We Deserve It.

My reaction was likely the same as yours. . . what the hell?

The recent Senate bill supporting our American society after a global economic and health crisis was nothing less than a corporate frenzy feeding by our politicians. This should be a dire wake up call right now for “we, the people.”

We have not been heard. It took Bernie Sanders screaming for four years and beyond to wake us up. And without a penny from a corporation or billionaire, it may be evident that they did their fancy foot work AGAIN and squashed him quietly so we would forget what it means for the working class and the working poor to stand on our own two feet and scream as loud as Bernie.

But, I ponder if we are truly ready for this act, when “we, the people” are not living into the integrity we so demand of others. Over the last few years I’ve had enough examples in my life to show that it’s not the politicians who are corrupt and exploitative – it’s everywhere in our society, even in my own neighborhood against the most vulnerable people, including my eight year old son.

I think the moment hit me hard as I sat in the driveway one sunny afternoon. My  eight year old son wanted to have a garage sale and he was determined to do it all by himself, including signage and him choosing which possessions of his to sell. I loved his determination. I chose not to tell him his signage was barely legible. I smiled when he hung it upside down on the curbside post. He grabbed his big collection of hot wheels which he rarely used and laid them out on a blanket on the driveway, waiting patiently for his first customer who turned out to be his only customer – a passerby. An older woman out on her walk greeted my son and my son worked hard to be the professional. He greeted her and showed her all he had to sell. She especially liked the cars, and he offered each one for 5 cents. She gave him three dollars for the entire collection. He packaged them up in a bag with a big thank you. He turned to me and smiled. “See mom, I can do it.”

My jaw had dropped. The woman walked away with an extra skip to her walk as if she was happy to get the deal of a lifetime, for her own grandkids, as she had told me. Any other garage sale would have had a sticker price of at least 30 dollars for my son’s collection.

My jaw was still dangling, but I put myself together for my son. I wanted him to own this feeling of accomplishing something himself, and I resisted the urge to tell him that he was robbed blind. That woman completely exploited an eight year old boy and she felt good about it.

Now, my own mother, a generous sort, would have entertained the young boy, understanding his age and ability. She would have spotted him a good $20 bill at least and given him a pat on the head. My mother’s view of the world is how I grew up, believing we help each and neighbors are honest with one another. Her rearing did not prepare me for our world today.

About five years ago I went through a divorce and lost pretty much everything. I had to struggle back into the “game” realizing wages in my own Marin County, California were literally slave wages for the working class. I started to accrue debt rapidly, just to survive, believing that I’d soon find a job to make a decent living. However, after four years I found myself in $40,000 in debt which kept me awake at night. I had never experienced such debt in my life.

I kept getting letters in the mail about loans to eliminate my credit card debts, so I decided to check one out, feeling a bit uncertain given that many such “deals” are often scams. I made the call. The nice man Michael talked me through the process which sounded like a great deal. I was enormously stressed given I had been working as a substitute teacher and I found myself telling him some of these woes and how criminal it is that teachers make such low wages. He really listened and played into the “friend” role. I began to trust him. He’d call just to check in, understanding I was stressed and he genuinely sounded like this method could help me get over the financial hump. Like my mother, my innocence goes deep. I found it difficult to question the integrity of a professional and could not imagine one exploiting a single mother in debt and working the way I was.

Michael wouldn’t send me the full documentation over email, saying at the time it wasn’t complete but he’d have it complete the night I’d meet his notary (anywhere and anytime), so then I could read the contract. It was in the dark of night, at a local cafe, where I sat down with a woman whom I had never met before and she presented me the financial contract. My jaw dropped again though I didn’t reveal my shock right away. Did they really suspect I was THIS STUPID? The idea was they’d give me a lump sum, make a deal with my bank, screwing them (and I liked my bank – a community credit union) and ruin my credit for years. But there was more. If the bank sued the company for the bully deal they were preparing the bank,  I would be responsible for all litigation and lawyer fees!

I realized the notary kept looking at her phone. Michael had been texting her and it was completely evident to me that I was set up for a complete scam. I looked at her hard and then started to laugh uncontrollably. There was pure humor in this moment. “Did you really think that I was THIS STUPID!” She got very quiet and actually, in the end, sided with me and said  “we women really need to stick together, don’t we?” She felt bad. At least, I think she did. I even told her I’d pay her notary fee for the evening. She declined and disappeared into the night. I never heard from Michael or the company again.

Tonight, days after the Senate bill sold the people out,  I sat down with my son again. He’s now almost 14 years old and continues to have a strong independent nature. He had wanted a “credit card” to use for online purchases. So, together we went to our local CVS store where he picked out a card and added a value of $20 to it, money which he had earned. I pointed out to him that he was also spending $3.95 simply for buying the card. He didn’t care and made the purchase. Later he made a few online purchases until he discovered this: for every purchase, the credit card company takes a dollar. A full dollar!

Now, you could think that I’m stupid for not reading the small print or teaching my son to read the small print. You could say I’m naive and should have researched these contracts or at least have stood up to that woman who jipped my son over the hotwheel set. That’s right, I could have. But, my point here is how do we even question our government and their exploitation when our entire culture operates in a predatory and exploitative approach. It’s everywhere! How can one develop trust in a system when one has to question everything. What has happened to honesty and making an honest living?

It’s not the government that needs to be reworked. It’s not even about newly elected officials representing us. We, the people need to step up integrity and stop pointing fingers at others until we face ourselves. We need a system to call out those who continue to exploit us and we need to stand up for one another.

As we experience lockdown, and dwell on our own mortality, let us also think about life and what we want out of life, community and society. Let us go deep with a cleansing of our entire culture of the exploitation and be prepared to stand up for the vulnerable and call out those who are robbing us blind.

We are better than this. And we deserve better.

If it’s not a revolution we undertake, let’s make it a cleansing and create a just world for ourselves. I, for one, would love to see my children grow up and look back at our current generation and be inspired by our power of honesty, integrity and justice and accept nothing less. Listen to my mother.

My suggestion: No more profit for the corporations.
Buy second hand only
Buy from small businesses
Create community gardens, own local food sources
Share, barter and trade goods
Get creative and never give them a penny more.

What are your ideas?

-Barbara McVeigh

Alwar, India – Representing Our International Film!

I’m in Delhi right now and in a few hours I board the train for Alwar south to meet up with international film makers, writers and industry leaders. Yes, we were selected to screen our film The Man Behind The White Guitar at the Alwar International Film Festival this weekend!

Why is this location important? This film which has been a collaboration by artists around the world, including Brazil, UK, NY and California, shares the life and music of a Brazilian Guitarist named José Neto who walks the talk with kindness, generosity and humility. Despite the fact he shares global stages with world leading musicians, as he is one himself, most people do not know his name. He has never promoted himself, as many have done these last 40 years. Let’s call it old school method or how Paul Liberatore Music Journalist says about him – “he’s in service to music, not fame or money.” These are good values in our world today and it’s an opportunity to shine the light on what can inspire us.

What’s also significant about this location in India is that Neto jammed with George Harrison in London and we all know the significance Indian music had on The Beatles. The White Album was written in India, not too far from Delhi, as The Beatles were on a spiritual quest themselves.

Yesterday I had the time to visit the Gandhi Smriti to give my respect to India’s legendary leader and I was so moved. His words reminded me of a spirit we can all get in tune with as the year 2020 brings in vast changes, and we must start dreaming big in order to make the positive changes needed for everyone in this dark hour of Australia burning, global war brewing, authoritarian regimes breeding and ocean acidifying. We, the people, must take a collective stand because we have forgotten our power and our responsibility, despite the fact we have had those before us who have lead the way in writings, music and their legendary lives.

Isn’t it our time now?

I have always felt as an outsider in my own country. That division began when I was 13 years old watching politics and life fall apart for my family. Most people don’t understand when I tell the story of my father’s 1981 national strike because they didn’t live it and it’s not in history books – in fact, the strike has nearly been erased from history. And, it was, with reflection, the last act of solidarity in this country, by a group of families who risked everything in order to demand political honesty when President Ronald Reagan had lied to them and gave them false promises in order to be elected. The trauma that strike left on my family and others, as many lost everything, committed suicide, were jailed or fine, taught me something . . . it was a gift, because it’s allowed me to see the truth of these last forty years and to scream them, post President Jimmy Carter who actually tried to stop climate change and the impact of foreign oil. Now, we do not have a second chance with the environmental policies, energy policies and more . . . that the GOP has delivered, along with the submitting Democrats who cashed out. We MUST clean up these last 40 years. Trump is merely the mirror demonstrating who and what this country became. And now we can shatter that mirror into shards and recreate the reflection we want – and that, I will say, includes kindness, generosity and humility.

We can do it. We can do it all over the world. “We, the people.”

KPFA Interview with Dennis Bernstein – Friday, Dec 13, 5pm

FLASHPOINTS, Friday, Dec 13, 5pm
KPFA, Berkeley CA/Pacifica News Radio

Here is the full interview.

I was very excited to join Dennis J Bernstein’s KPFA/Pacifica news program Flashpoints at KPFA Berkeley, CA, December 13, 2019.

It’s time to recognize those 12,000 families of the 1981 historic national union strike who stood up for the people of this country demanding political honesty – they are our inspiration today of what it means to be a citizen in a democracy, as written in the constitution “we, the people”.

And, it’s time to come clean, America. What happened in the 1980s under Reagan – wars, economics, labor and media policies that have devastated our country today? After all, wasn’t it the Iran hostage siege that determined the 1980 elections? That would essentially mean Iran controlled our elections. Was it truly a manufactured Hollywood style propaganda presidency that hoodwinked the American people? Why are we NOT talking about the war crimes of the Reagan Administration today? Reagan is known as the “Hero” of the Republican Party and has been worshiped by both the GOP and Neoliberal Democrats. It’s time to look at history with 20/20 vision and set the record straight.

We will not forget President Jimmy Carter and A Road Not Taken – Carter’s visionary solar and wind energy initiatives at time when we KNEW about carbon consequences. It’s a miracle he wasn’t shot when asking the American people to take a stand against OPEC. Carter is the shining light in our election year . . .let’s “Jimmy” these elections, and remember what integrity is all about. http://www.jimmycarterjamboree.com

Listen for what is a very dynamic, sobering conversation! Time to come clean, America!

A Road Not Taken – Time To Come Clean, America. Dec 4

The Swiss made film, “A Road Not Taken.” A powerful historic look at President Carter’s visionary green energy policies.

About this Event

December 4, 6:30pm (film begins at 7pm)
Museum of International Propaganda, San Rafael, CA
to reserve your spot.

A Swiss made film, A Road Not Taken, offers a powerful look at history revisiting President Carter’s historic solar initiatives and conservation efforts in the late 1970s when America knew about big oil consequences. Barbara McVeigh, author Redemption, How Ronald Reagan nearly Ruined My Life and DSA Member introduces this documentary with exclusive interviews with President Jimmy Carter.

The film showcased locally three years ago with College of Marin in honor of Carter’s 93rd birthday and the inaugural California celebrations of the Jimmy Carter Jamboree, celebrating a living legend and whistleblowing the greatest forty year propaganda act ever delivered to US Citizens. http://www.jimmycarterjamboree.org

Carter’s historic green energy efforts have nearly been wiped out in US history books, by the corporate media and even by modern day environmentalists who refuse to acknowledge a president who urged the people to stand up to OPEC and big foreign oil and to adopt aggressive energy conservation habits. His solar panels on the White House were symbolic of his efforts and California (under Governor Brown, at the time) was leading the world toward solar and wind clean energy.



We do know that Reagan, the “Hero” of the Republican Party took down the solar panels. And by the looks of it, we’ve endured 40 years of the greatest political propaganda act driven by politicians, corporate media, educational institutions, including text book history writers, to conceal the most important environmental and political history of our time – when we had a president who tried to stop greenhouse gasses, big oil and our current global ecological disaster. It’s time for America to come clean.

Carter is more than a peanut farmer. He is the leading visionary of our time and The Father of the Solar Age.


Screen Shot 2017-09-04 at 7.42.40 AMBarbara McVeigh will introduce the film. Barbara is host of People’s Environmental News on Marin TV. She also wrote a memoir “Redemption, How Ronald Reagan Nearly Ruined My Life” about being the daughter of a union member in the 1981 national strike of air traffic controllers as they stood up to Reagan, risking everything, for political honesty. She was 13 years old waiting for the FBI to come arrest her father. She wants Reagan to be held accountable for the ecological disaster we are facing today, and ensure Carter is recognized properly as the Father of the Solar Age, as he tried to mitigate climate change 40 years ago. . . “Reagan has nearly ruined ALL of our lives with his big business and big oil policies post the visionary President Jimmy Carter!” Barbara says. “Our history books are backwards!”


The filmmakers of A Road Not Taken, Roman Keller and Christina Hemauer, presented the film in Marin County, along with Michael Stocker of Ocean Conservation Research in the year 2017 in honor of Carter’s 93rd birthday. You can see the talk here. This film has been unable to find distribution for over 12 years. It’s been given to the Redford Center and the events of the last three years have been shared with nearly every top level journalist, comedian, environmentalist . . . and NOBODY wants to talk about it.



It’s Here! Film Release in Marin County!

After five long years . . . a group of international artists made it happen! We are ready to share a story of inspiration, one to showcase the values of kindness, generosity and humility with the power of diversity and world music to unite us all!

This film is my take back – a childhood dream I had to play the guitar after I lost my lessons when my family went broke. My father took a stand for political honesty in the 1981 union strike of air traffic controllers. He broke his federal contract, risked arrest and heavy fines. We endured years of emotion and financial turmoil.

My hope with our film is for us all to gain the power to rise and take a stand for the values we want in this country . . . and we could do it. Neto says, “believe in yourself to live the dream.” Believe in yourself.

Film Screening at the Smith Rafael Theater on June 10! Neto also performs the day before at the Fairfax Festival. Join the fun!!!

The theater will definitely sell out – so, get your tickets fast!