I aquired the magnet and map in the above picture during my visit to Washington during the summer of 1997. At the time I'd only been thinking about the relationship between information compression and political pressure for a year or two at the most. I'd recently read a book about economics by Herman Daly, in which he had explained that micro economics maps into macro economics as a digestive thing. For example, I eat food, use the energy to walk and breathe, and dump out what I can't use in toilets. My life is seen by the commercial sector in terms of the food and other goods I buy and the trash and pollution I cause. These are a superset of the stuff that goes through my body. In the same way, my community's impact is a superset of mine, and so on up through the County, State, National, and global economies.

I'd been a big fan of that saying "think globally, act locally" for a long time already. I was trying to think of what old saying would be compatible with the above ideas about economics, and I remembered Cheif Seattle's "man is not the web of life. He is only a strand in it." I'd been a fan of Cheif Seattle ever since I read what's popularly known as "Cheif Seattle's Speech".  I learned that there was a statue in honor of the guy up in Seattle, so I decided to visit the guy and throw a coin or two in his fountain. The above map shows where he was. I had to do some digging to find that out. They don't brag about him the way they do about the Space Needle.

Thinking back on the experience now, it's been even longer since Chief Seattle himself ate a good meal than it had been at that time. I still see the influence of Cheif Seattle's speech in the words of another environmentalist every now and then. I would say that the people that listen to the guys ideas are more likely to have sustainabile habits than the average American. Does that make Chief Seattle a saint of the green movement? What other term is there for someone like that?

Anyhow, I was surprised by how similar the magnet I got then and the coin that I got in my change at the farmers market last May (5/12/07) are.