Why Can’t We Harvest Trees Like Carrots or Potatoes?


This videos represents an in-depth dialogue with long-time residents of one particular geographical location–Mendocino County–as they come to terms with the reality of continued deforestation. An attempt is made to keep it from becoming an “us versus them” situation. Therefore this series on logging includes the voices of long time residents who have changed their minds, timber workers for big corporations and independent loggers (gypos). The continuity is the intermittent voice of Norman De Vall, a supervisor of Mendocino County.

This tape which was done over three years from 1990 to 1992, includes Redwood Summer with confrontations in the woods and on the streets. It includes the “resolution” of these conflicts, as independent loggers and Earth First! come together in opposition to corporate methodology and ends. In particular, Judy Bari (Earth First!), and Ernie and Tony Pardini (fifth-generation loggers), form a sustained-yield wood co-operative.

The tape has lots of music, either in context of demonstrations or as scene bridges. Musicians include David Raitt, Gene Parsons and Dwayne Cherney. Much of the methodology of recording was to use ambient sound for visual cues i.e. old growth cuts are recorded on site. The tape includes the aborted Forest Practice Rules Hearings with corporate foresters assailing the opposition together with representatives of Mendocino’s fishing fleet who connect deforestation with the demise of independent fishermen.

1 video: $10

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