The Ashby Arts Spaces welcomes you to join us for an educational documentary screening of “Merchants Of Doubt” on September 7th, with doors at 7p, introduction to begin promptly by 7:30p, and a brief discussion after the screening.

Praxis Makes Perfect: The Climate Edition

“Are you, too, overwhelmed by Climate Anxiety and Grief? Are you looking for more understanding of how things came to be this way, and what to do about it? Come learn how the Climate Crisis is Capitalism itself.

In Climate Capitalism, we will learn the history and mechanism of the collapse of the planet, including words and concepts like Commons, Enclosures, and Extraction. And with our better understanding of the problem, we will better understand what we can do to help

“Merchants Of Doubt” is a 2014 American documentary film directed by Robert Kenner and inspired by the 2010 book of the same. The film traces the use of public relations tactics that were originally developed by the tobacco industry to protect their business from research indicating health risks from smoking. The most prominent of these tactics is the cultivation of scientists and others who successfully cast doubt on the scientific results. Using a professional magician, the film explores the analogy between these tactics and the methods used by magicians to distract their audiences from observing how illusions are performed. For the tobacco industry, the tactics successfully delayed government regulation until long after the establishment of scientific consensus about the health risks from smoking. As its second example, the film describes how manufacturers of flame retardants worked to protect their sales after toxic effects of the retardants were reported in the scientific literature. The central concern of the film is the ongoing use of these tactics to forestall governmental action to regulate greenhouse gas emissions in response to the risk of global climate change.

Pierce Delahunt (he/they) holds an M.Ed. from the Institute for Humane Education. Their research was a study of activist-education programs throughout the country.​ They grew up in the occupied Lenape territories of New York and New Jersey. They currently live in the occupied Muwekma Ohlone territory of Berkeley, California, and pay the respective Land Tax.

Pierce has worked with CISV, Youth Empowered Action, SMASH Academy, the Coalition for Healthy School Food, Camp Common Ground, MySexBio, and other activist and education programs since 2010. They teach the interpersonal and the institutional as integral to each other, because they are. Their fields are Social Emotional Learning and Political Economy, including activism, social justice, class analysis, and Socialist economics (or as they like to call it: economics).

Pierce works from the frame that individualist social-emotional learning is insufficient: Our capacity to have fulfilling lives and relationships cannot come at the expense of others’ abilities to do the same. If our peace, love, light, and whole-child education movements do not address systemic injustice, then they are none of those things.