Theme: Alternative Media

Sunday, December 6th

Have you ever watched a flock of birds fly overhead and wondered how they all know when to turn and where to go? Or a school of fish, or a swarm of gnats? It turns out that with each wingbeat, each swimming motion, each movement, they’re all voting, and the majority decides. Thom Hartmann, the nation’s leading progressive radio talk show host, bestselling author and among our most penetrating socio-political thinkers, will share his passionate conviction that democracy is the organizing principle of all life, as most Indigenous cultures have been trying to tell us for millennia. He will explain how understanding the essence of democracy can give us insight into how we to reinvent our society, from the local to the national level, in ways that uphold the values of life and sustainability, and that can lead to a brighter, profoundly more meaningful future.

December 6th | 11:41 am to 11:56 am

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Keynote


Thom Hartmann
Progressive Talk Show Host

Saturday, December 12th

NOTE: This is a 120-minute session in which we will break up into 5 cohorts of 6-8 people, so register early because it is limited to 35 participants.

This session will be an interactive intergenerational futurist role-playing game in which people of all ages will collaborate to create a new future based on resilience and justice, centering the vision and leadership of younger generations. Participants will be placed into separate groups of 6-8 people who will then embark on an immersive journey through an eco-futurist, post-apocalypse world. Upon registration, you will receive a packet that explains the game, and each of us will select a specific character to embody in the scenario. 

A game master will facilitate each separate cohort. The intention is to be in the play and practice of collective decision-making for resilience and justice, honoring the wisdom and visions that different generations and identities hold. Youth participants will make up the majority in every cohort, ensuring that youth voices are centered in self-determining the world of the future.     

At the end of the game, the whole larger group will come back together and each team will share the choices they made and how those decisions shaped their outcomes. Inevitably, each group will have made different choices based on who was in the room and whose voices were most valued. This game is also designed to help demonstrate the multiplicity of imagined futures that we could step into at any given moment. By exploring themes of apocalypse and resilience through play, we open up space for radically imagining what is possible together from a place of curiosity and possibility.

If you are a youth (age 13 – 22) that would like to register for this session on scholarship, please email maya@bioneers.org.

December 12th | 2:00 pm to 3:30 pm

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Panelists


Sunday, December 13th

It is long past time for us to work effectively on critical climate, justice and economic issues, but agreement that something is an urgent need does not necessarily lead to effective action, as our handling of COVID-19, healthcare, racial justice and the economic crisis sadly illustrate. Although we need to develop the capacity to effectively address complex challenges, how can we do so when we are so intensely polarized on so many issues? Somehow, we have to come together and share ideas with a belief in each other’s good will and intelligence, even if we have disagreements. Facilitated by Joan Blades, co-founder of MomsRising.org, MoveOn.org, and LivingRoomConversations.org, this session will be an open-source effort to build respectful connections across ideological, cultural and party lines. We will gain skills for engaging in peace-building with friends, family and in our community. Because our ability to live with and care for people who hold different views has diminished over the last many year, come discover how meaningful, structured conversations across differences, in person or by video, can help us overcome our current system’s socio-political paralysis.

December 13th | 2:00 pm to 3:30 pm

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Panelists


Joan Blades
Co-Founder
LivingRoomConversations.org