The Rise of the People – Out of the Shadow

I like to think this . . . it’s not what our government is doing to us . . . it’s what it is doing FOR us, like those words of Paul Hawken. The time for people to awake and understand what our government has become is NOW . . . we have merely been sleeping.

As our country begins to redefine itself, please to not misconstrue this as an event of deterioration. No, it’s better than that. We are RECREATING our values after living in the shadow of the Reagan Era for 35 years. As we come to understand who and what we’ve been, we come to hard truths and will look at history, the old Cold War and more from a very different light.

Our perceived national heroes may become villains as we understand the propaganda that has basically brainwashed us, the American people. Carter had called Reagan a right wing radical, and he was right. The policies that affected our country related to economy, labor, environment, media . . .were all driven by Reagan and we’ve living with them, like shadows, without seeing them.

I’ve been down this path before. The year was 1981 when I was 13 years old and witnessed a leader take over our country with the same energy as Trump is doing today. It hurt two generations of my family. But, this isn’t just about my family, it’s about our entire country. My story is your story. Today, Trump is merely a reflection of what Reagan did with healthcare, energy, big money and more thirty five years ago. Good people gave up when Reagan bulldozed our country, if not world. And it’s happening again. I have one thing to say – not under my watch this time.

I am no longer that 13 year old child who dealt with blows from that “Hero of the Republican Party”. And I will not allow that to happen again to my country or to my children and future children. There is another way of doing business . . . good business. And I will live the rest of my life with this mission.

Our children, all children in this world, are dealing with a major catastrophic reality – global climate change, ocean acidification and more. It’s time to dream big and act big . . .  I advocate a new Cold War. As I said, there is another way of doing business. Just ask me.

Here’s my report from The People’s Summit, 2017, in Chicago, Illinois. The launch of The Sander’s Institute. Time to rise and get real. It’s a good organization with fantastic values. Let’s live by them.

The People’s Summit – Chicago!

People are rising for TRUTH!!!

I feel very privileged to have been chosen to join Bernie Sander’s The People’s Summit this upcoming weekend . . . in Chicago. It’s three days to organize, rally and talk about our country, values and more.

And it’s time!

I’ll be posting events on my facebook page and I’ll update here on Sunday! Look forward to meeting lots of coal country activists, those running for congress and talk about democratic socialism – time for big ideas!

And I’ve got some ideas brewing too!

Tonight! Sunday, June 4, 9pm

Tonight at 9pm on Marin Community Media Center of Marin . . . As the daughter of a federal criminal under Ronald Reagan, I got a few bold things to say about the state of the planet AND the Hero of The Republican Party as our political leaders decide to pull out of the Paris Climate Accord.

And I’m saying them. . .

PLEASE TUNE Into public access television. Tonight at 9PM live stream!


-Barbara McVeigh

New Radio Show – check it out!



Take Back!
The Universe LOVES to Laugh!


Tues 12-1pm
102.3 FM San Rafael OR
world wide @

Take Back! is a one hour political, arts and public affairs radio program highlighting the thinkers of today, with emphasis on California residents, to discuss how to challenge and reshape American ideals. The program introduces environmentalists, artists, intellectuals, comedians, writers, professors and more as a positive message of change and inspiration. We will get deep, and we will laugh at the absurdity of being human too!


Barbara McVeigh is a filmmaker, radio host, writer, producer, activist and mother in Marin County. She is also a former graduate student of Humanities at Dominican University of California.

SCHEDULE and GUESTS Coming up Next!


102.3FM San Rafael or world wide at

Upcoming Talk!

Please join us for film, food and conversation. I’ll also share some excitement about my upcoming film The Man Behind the White Guitar – it’s time for some positive vision and good energy. It’s the 50th anniversary of the Summer of Love. Let’s make it happen, California!

I’ve lived 35 years suffering under The Republican Party’s policies. And finally I thought I could start having some peace in my life when . . . what happens? Oh, my.

I look to share my story, as the daughter of a federal criminal under Ronald Reagan. What happened to me when I was 13 years? And what has happened to all of us, including Mother Earth? Time to change tracks!


Warming Hearts


At first I had a very frigid conversation with this great man. I tend to be shy and I knew he was an important figure, who understood truth. So, I was on guard and hesitant to tell him all the worries and concerns I have of the world these days. But, no one was around and we were alone, so I thought, well, maybe I should just be honest and frank and . . . trust. That’s not such a crazy way of being.

So, I opened my heart and I told him all my fears about what’s happening in the world today. And to my astonishment, he continued to sit thoughtfully beside me for a good long time, without interrupting or disagreeing once.

In fact his face actually grew stone cold  as my words continued to spill. All he remained gripping his pipe and clutching his book with hard knuckles, and stared at the snow covered mountains beyond, as if looking thoughtfully for the right words, a shimmer of light to inspire a spark, the essence of life and meaning for everyone in the world today.

And he remained  lost for words, or so it seemed, and I began to recognize he was clearly speechless.


The snow began to fall around us, and I didn’t want to become cold, like so many others have become. Slightly disheartened, I finally got up to leave him staring off into the distance alone that cold wintery day.

I looked back one final time, and I swear I heard him say “stone hearts, please thaw and start beating again.”

Mark Twain. . .

“Courage is resistance to fear, mastery of fear – not absence of fear.”

“Always do right. This will gratify some people and astonish the rest.”


A Dystopian Story . . . Post the Great Collapse

So, I’ve been writing again. When I get into these modes it’s hard for me to even function as me, as I begin to see the world through my characters. Every waking hour I experience the world through the lens of my characters and perhaps even mindfully become them as I distill fodder blasting at me, from the sips of coffee I take in the morning to the way I chop vegetables for dinner  . . . is it a gift or a curse?

So these days I’m Patricia, the protagonist in the fictional account of the future, a story called FAN, Inc., where two worlds have emerged forty years from now, a Patriarchal World that is highly controlled and a Matriarchal Society, called the The Mushroom Colony which lives in secret underground in the wild lands, where people of The Patriarchial World are forbidden to go. Each world is governed by the divorced parents of Patricia (a feminized name of patriarchy), as she is the link to restore balance. Yet, how can she believe the task rapture-ready-angels.jpgshe’s been bestowed, especially when she is told the mentally ill in her father’s society, those who have been imprisoned and soon to be executed, are actually the healers, the shamans who bridge our world to the other world, the world of angels, without sounding mentally ill herself?

Patricia lives with her father, a madman who has built walls around his country in order to contain them and control them. “People can’t be trusted, Patricia,” he has told her since she was young.

Patricia has heard rumors about The Mushroom Colony but dismisses the rumors. Her thmother is dead, her father has also told her for years. Besides, she’s happy shopping and living the good life, why upset any order? And, her father is responsible for stopping Global Climate Change and saving humanity when the air had become so foul that his company FAN,Inc. commodotized fresh air, allowing every citizen to have their own “I-Oxogenizer” and “I-Mask.” He’s a hero, isn’t he? But, here’s the thing, Patricia learns her own father is now poisoning people through the air of his company, air that they are dependent on,  if they don’t abide by his laws as he’s taken every personal power from them – including the power of sex, art, music, information and even motherhood itself? Can Patricia stand up to her own father, learn to love her mother after years of hate, forgive her own brother for past abuse and risk sounding mentally ill herself when she takes a stand for the mentally ill who she’s learned are the healers, the shamans of society? She must expose her own father as well as her own mother and then sacrifice her own self serving happiness to help all society restore balance and begin anew?

It’s a story of anger, betrayal, spite and heroism . . . that ends with love on the highest level possible . . . going for it!


The crazy thing about writing this story is I get so much fodder every time I open the newspapers! When our own oceans are acidifying at an alarming rate, we are truly at risk of the very idea of oxygen becoming a commodity and being controlled . . . it’s time we appreciate what we have and fight for our own existence as caring, compassionate humans, taking responsibility for our actions.

Most of our oxygen comes from the ocean, not just from trees.

It’s an amazing awakening when you consider we abuse what is most dear to us . . . maybe we all need to learn how to love again, especially our own foibles.


I hope to be done with this novel by the end of February, and have it ready for readers by the first of May – Why May?

“May” the fifth month is named after the goddess of spring, renewal. It also means illusion in Sanskrit. It’s also May Day: ” The earliest May Day celebrations appeared in pre-Christian times, with the Floralia, festival of Flora, the Roman goddess of flowers. The festival of Flora:

“In ancient Roman religion, the Floralia was a festival in honor of the goddess Flora, held April 27 during the Republican era, or April 28 on the Julian calendar. In Latin, the festival was known as the Ludi Florae, the Games (ludi) of Flora. Under the Empire, the games lasted for six days.[3]

The festival had a licentious, pleasure-seeking atmosphere. In contrast to festivals based on Rome’s archaic patrician religion, the games of Flora had a plebeian character.[4]


The Awakening Begins – January 20, 2017

Narada Michael Walden – “We need to stand up for each other. And make a change. I thought we made more progress. And here we are trying to come back together again. Hey, let’s not forget we love each other. We need each other. And if we don’t, this whole thing will fall apart again.” Interview, January 20, 2017

Harry Belafonte – “We need our artists. They are the truth seekers.” Interview, January 20, 2016

16112883_644043392435478_8559806566319947128_oJanuary 20, 2017 –

At 4am this morning, I heard an electric blast from the sky. Thunder ripped and then a streak of lighting bolted through the pouring rain. The last time I heard such a blast was when Jose Neto, a founding member of Fourth World with songs “Burning Money” and “Seventh Wave” ripped on his electric white guitar. It woke me up to the living. Imagine.




Brazilian Filmmaker Ronaldo Aguiar arrived in San Francisco yesterday from New York. Today we conduct our final interview with Narada Michael Walden, musician and producer.



Ronaldo and I will work toward finalizing the film The Man Behind The White Guitar this next week. It’s been a two year passion project and we’re almost there. We plan to share big.


Listen to music and begin to dance.

Then, be a rebel and be kind, generous and serve one another instead of your own self interest.  This makes you a rebel in
American society today.

We’ll all be dancing angels.

Be a rebel. Be a rebel. We need our rebels.
– Barbara McVeigh


I Need a Hero. Could It Be Reagan? Here me out . . .

img_5836So, I’ve always had this little problem. It used to get me into trouble a lot when I was young. It might have started when I was six and hopped over a chain link fence that said “Do Not Enter” to play with my pollywogs in the ditch below. Then there was the one time I snuck out of my bedroom window to gather with teenage friends in the middle of the night. We’d head into a local train tunnel, hold fast to the wall and wait for a train to roar by as we screamed our heads off feeling the rush and power.  Or, there were the other times in high school when I got so bored learning information I knew would prove useless in my life that I began to forge parent letters and convince my other high school friends to pack up in my car and head to the beach. Yep, that was me. I do not recommend this subversive behavior. And, how I got through those years, I’ll never know. And why my parents put up with me, that’s another story.

I still have that rebel spirit, but as an adult I’m getting smarter and understanding how to have more fun with it without compromising integrity. The values of honesty and justice ensure your spirit soars  . . . because these values demonstrate how human we are and not just mechanical computers or fragile porcelain sitting pretty on mantels. At this point,  I don’t know about you, but the values I see roaring like a train through our country right now make me want to scream my head off. And, no, I don’t want to climb any fences or think about forging letters even if my buttons are getting pushed and I feel I’m about to crack.

I do like to listen to Jimmy Carter’s Crisis of Confidence Speech of 1979 for inspiration. screen-shot-2017-01-05-at-9-10-23-amNobody listened to him then but that speech should be screaming at us today. President Jimmy Carter should be honored with the highest level prize a person could get.  .  . What? Right, he did already. Nobel Peace Prize 2002. So, why does the international community recognize and honor this American president but he’s not valued so much in our country? In fact, I bet most people would be hard pressed to think much of what he did. Why is that?

Maybe we should reflect on that speech he gave in 1979. He said “people are beginning to value more what people have than what they do.” I thought of these words while looking at our entertainment media, advertisements and television programs. I thought of this value again on November 8 when we elected a new president. We value people with money, property and looks. That’s the way it’s always been, right?

Well, maybe we have forgotten. In the years of the 1970s there was a very strong environmental movement and very passionate people who understood the consequences of fossil fuels and importance of biodiversity. Earth Day was created in 1972 following hard establishment questioning during the 1960s. In addition, a number of bills were passed: National Environmental Policy Act of 1970 (NEPA), the Clean Air Act of 1970, the Federal Water Pollution Control Act of 1972, the Environmental Pesticide Control Act of 1972, the Endangered Species Act of 1973, and the Toxic Substances Control Act of 1976, just to name a few.

Screen Shot 2017-01-11 at 6.52.54 PM.pngI remember watching a number of shows when I was a kid that made me think about nature. One of which was the story All Summer in A Day about a group of children living on Venus and never feeling or seeing the beauty of the sun until one day they do. Then of course, I remember the powerful Crying Native American ad   – that tear, that single tear said it all as he witnessed the pollution and traffic we had created in the modern world.  I cried my eyes out watching Born Free and I remember holding the phone begging my mom to call and donate money to the starving African organizations when TV commercials came on showing images of starving children and Screen Shot 2016-05-30 at 3.32.57 PMhorrific disparity.

There was a large passionate community of people doing great things for everyone in that time period of the 1970s. Wikipedia calls it the “Environmental Period.” In fact, a film was recently made documenting the ocean activists of that time period  Coastal Heroes  about those who fought hard for us today so we can enjoy beaches and have a better understanding of uncontrolled development and consequences of fossil fuels, as the consequences of CO2 were already understood. In fact, the writes that environmentalism was so mainstream that the U.S. Forest Service’s Woodsy Owl interrupted Saturday morning cartoons to remind kids to “Give a Hoot; Don’t Pollute.”

Then at the highest government level we had President Jimmy Carter who placed solar panels on The White House and 17,000 wind turbines in the State of California. He called upon the American people to embark on an “adventure” toward sustainable and independent energy, calling it the moral equivalent of war.

So, if we had such a large movement of passionate people in the 1970s, what has happened to us for the last 35 years? The answer is more entertaining or tragic, depending on your viewpoint, than any Hollywood production could produce.

President Jimmy Carter also warned us of a right wing radical presidential candidate. Hisscreen-shot-2016-11-25-at-1-59-44-am name was Ronald Reagan, the same leader who called Carter’s “moral equivalent of war” statement “MEOW.” Our country in 1981 experienced a pivotal cultural shift, aligning with conservative values and new polices ranging from labor, environmental, health and economic trickle down agendas paving the way for billionaires to rise higher than the Trump Tower and our oceans to acidify, melting polar ice caps to threaten us with rising seas and global oil warfare. Then you can add 35 years of oil wars and spills, along with Global Climate reality today and understand it all makes a story for Hollywood . . . and appropriately so since the starring role was an actor himself. The first act, symbolically so, was the day Reagan removed the solar panels off The White House and said “get those off there.” Then he fired a striking union which lead to the dismantling of many unions, the binding thread to ensure a middle class, he pushed foreign oil back into our economy full throttle, and believed with his economic plan money would trickle down from the wealth to the rest of population. Was Reagan an idealist, believing in the good of people, and that billionaires would have ethics? Or, was he simply naive? Or, worse – criminal?

The judgement by us doesn’t matter anymore. Reagan simply forgot one simple yet vital fact, money produces greed and corruption. It’s found in literature since before the days of The Decameron and the Roman Church. It stirs drama and has created reason to build international churches and temples for thousands of years. Greed is part of the Western Mind Set, not human mind set. The Ohlone Indians actually valued friendship over the collection of wealth, and hunters always gave the most prize meat to the most in need, so maybe there is hope for humanity.

Essentially we’ve been living in the shadow of the Reagan Era for 35 years and we didn’t know it. Our culture shifted so powerfully in 1981 that we haven’t been questioning our values because we couldn’t see the light, that perspective and wisdom of a previous generation that went dark and silent.

So, what happened to those die hard environmentalists of the 1970s who put their time and energy into protecting us, the future generation, against environmental peril? Simple. They burned out. And who could blame them? Our current California governor Jerry Brown was in office at the time of Carter, interestingly so. Brown was a leading advocate, along with Carter, pushing for sustainable energy and working tight with solar and wind business consultants to ensure a growing future economic viability. But, when a political train comes roaring through a tunnel, as it seemed to do with Reagan, and as we can see so clearly with Trump today, who could blame those 1970 environmentalists when a president is elected on a landslide receiving the most electoral votes for any incumbent president, as Reagan received? Environmentalist today can have compassion and should not blame the 1970 activists for giving up then as we head into Global Climate Change reality today. But, we can thank them for making us smarter, because we understand the environmental stakes are at the peak and we’ve got big work ahead of us.

California is taking a stand for environmental work as a new conservative president and cabinet members take position. “They are the most dangerous group in the history of humanity,” the leading intellectual Noam Chomsky warns us today. Global oil and anti EPA leaders are taking charge in our federal government after a new generation of people have tirelessly been building environmental efforts with green energy. We understand how a train can come roaring through and this time there will be no laughing or hugging walls.

We must stand collectively in front of that proverbial train to ensure it stops, so we can all get on a new track of living right and take heed of Carter’s 1979 speech, understanding that we must value people for what they do and how they do it for all of us.

It’s time to change tracks.

screen-shot-2017-01-05-at-9-13-33-amOne final note. Michael Reagan writes about his father in his book Lessons My Father Taught Me and says Reagan would say it’s important to own up to your mistakes. Could the Reagan leaders of the Reagan Museum and Library own up to Reagan’s mistakes related to his fossil fuel push, economic policies and labor agendas that have taken this country down a dark road?

This is a test to see if the power of Reagan’s idealism shines through to those who truly value his legacy. If they can come clean, perhaps Reagan’s true potential as a great leader, a human being who cared about humanity with the ability to impart those ideals to society will shine bright and forever and help us out of the darkness.

Last year The Vatican had an art exhibit at the Reagan Museum. Even Pope Francis embraces today’s environmental movement and is trying to inspire. Reagan was tight with Pope John Paul II, his strongest ally. There’s a strong disconnect, one that is so evident.

db4d0d68f3ef3d6206e9f727aca06584I could use a hero. I’d love to see Ronald Reagan come riding in on a proverbial horse with cowboy hat and lasso and say “Whoa, I made some big mistakes. I am so sorry.” And make his namesake, “The Hero of the Republican” true and powerful for us all.

It’d take guts, a sign of a true leader.

And it’d be a class act, a perfect ending to any Hollywood production.









My Book is Available!

Passion continues and I have a powerful story to share – love, life and politics. And I reveal the most powerful shadow in American politics today resulting in 35 years of oil wars, oil spills, terror organizations and now ocean acidification.

14339208_10157424270400634_1274946778_o“My father is a federal criminal, my father is my hero,” Barbara McVeigh writes in her memoir Redemption, How Ronald Reagan Nearly Ruined My Life. Reagan fired her father for a union strike in 1981 leading him and 11,500 other families into years of strife. She lost her dream to be an oceanographer and her guitar lessons as her family struggled emotionally and financially. She blamed her father for not placing family first. Years later she takes up sailing, her late great uncle’s passion, who had been her best friend and by doing so, she learns to take the helm of life. As bitter truths emerge about her own fifteen year marriage, against all odds, Barbara makes a passionate project reclaiming her childhood dreams resulting in two first time films with the most important oceanographer and Brazilian guitarist of our time. Then she confronts the dark shadows of Reagan’s policies revealing the greatest crime in the history of humanity.

Barbara has a new dream now and the spirits are guiding her, as they had been all along.

Barbara McVeigh is a Bay Area sailor, writer, producer, film maker, activist and educator and knows the universe loves to laugh. She lives in Northern California. She calls on all Musicians, Mortals, Mariners, Angels, Gods and Goddesses to join her for one mission, “let’s advocate respect for our natural world and ensure a healthy, happy future for all our children.” Her film The Man Behind the White Guitar releases January 17, 2017, days before the US presidential inauguration as a message of positive spirit, devotion and loyalty. Racing with Copepods with Dr. Sylvia Earle is free online.