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 on the untold story - the impact of big corporations on society
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Updated: April 4, 2015

Maria Gilardin learned radio in the KPFA news department in 1980 and was one of the founders of the women's department. She co-wrote the GATT Guide for the Earth Summit in Rio, was founding producer of the national weekly public-affairs show Making Contact, and is a member of the International Forum on Globalization.

Since 1993, Maria has written and produced radio on global trade and great ideas of local resistance to globalization.

The first article ever written about TUC Radio and me:
"Gilardin's TUC Radio continues to report on the untold story: the impact of the big corporations on society. And despite the massive and growing barriers preventing her type of public-affairs programming from getting on the air, TUC is reaching thousands of listeners around the world."

While living for over 20 years in an artist coop in San Francisco I participated in the building's gallery and theater events. Now that I moved to the country I'm organizing my own art shows. The images and events are just another expression of what I do with radio.
Here are some of the collages and photos:

East Bay Express - review of art show, July 2008
An activist's artistic double-take on Life in These United States.

"Toasting the End of Capitalism at NoneSuch Space is Gilardin's two-pronged take on the state of the nation. Her social-documentarian photographs include "Earthquake, San Francisco Marina," showing a Loma-Prieta-damaged building under TV klieg lights; .. Her Dadaist/Surrealist montages include "Tasting Room," in which a gigantic turkey dinner sits on a showroom floor next to Cadillacs (one afire); and "Hard Rain," a scene of eco-apocalypse, with buildings crumbling and burning, and cars falling from a flaming heaven. Can capitalism learn to behave? Stay tuned."

SF Chronicle - review, July 2008
"Journalist and radio producer Maria Gilardin is well known in the Bay Area for her social-justice activities, but the NoneSuch Space gallery aims to show off her work as an all-around creative force... The show is titled "Toasting the End of Capitalism."

Oakland Hills Examiner - review - July 2008
"Surprisingly, Maria’s a great artist with a sense of humor too.  While her radio shows are quite serious, her visual artwork provides an amusing counterbalance."

Ukiah Daily Journal review, April 2009
“ We've all just been fired by capitalism, changing our world from an 8 hour work day to a 24 hour work-free day. Now, how do we make creative use of our time?"  That’s the theme of Maria Gilardin's show at One Earth! Gallery.

Invitation, desgin Ferlinghetti/Bjorkman
In January 2010 Lawrence Ferlinghetti and I had a collage, painting, poetry and photo show in a Northern California logging town at the Willits Center for the Arts. 
The show was entitled: End of Industrial Civilization.

Midway through the show we had a huge party with localization groups, music and a two question game: How far back do we need to go for a sustainable independent life AND What can you live without? I wrote "stone age"- quoting Derrick Jensen - and am moving in that direction, laptop and solar panels along for the ride.

Top image: Tasting Room by Maria Gilardin

Bottom image: Autogeddon by Lawrence Ferlinghetti

Left: High School students read Ferlinghetti poem from Coney Island. Right: Ferlinghetti's painting Too Stupid .. to save themselves. In front Maria's sculpture with turkey feathers.

Left: Reading from Ferlinghetti's pamphlet against Nixon: Tyrannus NIX. Right: Ferlinghetti's painting Autogeddon

End of Industrial Civilization - Party
Left: Filling in the survey: What can you live without? Right: Alien mask by Patrick Lofthouse from the play: AutoCracy. "Aliens looking down on earth would consider cars the dominant life form and human beings fuel cells injected when the car wants to move."

Anti Globalization banner, Francisco Aquino, 1994
No NAFTA - No Gatt
Shown again at: End of Industrial Civilization

By graffiti artist Twick, AKA Francisco Aquino. 1994 - This is my first "commissioned" art work. I went shopping with Francisco because he was too young to be allowed to buy spray paint. (SF anti graffiti ordinance)

Anti Globalization banner, Francisco Aquino, 1994
The 18 foot wide banner was first shown in 1994 on the day Congress adopted the GATT agreement. ("GATT" was later changed to WTO). It was tied to the truck of the San Francisco Mime Troupe, parked on the overpass over Highway 101, and seen by many thousands of perplexed commuters - who knew even less than Congress about this corporate bill of rights that was about to change international relations.


Toasting the End of Capitalism
closed three weeks before Lehman Brothers went under

My solo show at Oakland's NoneSuch Space had the first good reviews I have ever had (see above). Was it because - or in spite of the risky title??

Image: Hard Rain, collage by Maria

Summer 2009
Lawrence Ferlinghetti, sound designer Jim McKee with dog Smokey and Maria Gilardin in Bixby Canyon at a recording session for BARD, Bay Area Radio Drama.

Erik Bauersfeld, Director of BARD is not in the photo - he is taking this picture.

Gallery Statement for the opening of
Click here to look at the Collages and some of the Photos
"NoneSuch Space presents the photography and vivid Giclee prints of hand cut collages by Bay Area artist, Maria Gilardin. Her work ranges from spoofs on automobile culture, to corporate takeover of farms and dreams of escaping techno-economic absurdity."

"Some of us
no longer waiting
to see which will fail first

the economic system that feeds on us,
or the natural system
that nourishes us

sever our ties to the status quo,
declare our independence from things
and raise our glasses . . . to the end of capitalism!"
-Maria Gilardin.

Please help keep it that way

Over 75,000 people have downloaded programs within the last year. They came from 123 countries, many universities, and even the government and the military download – what exactly I can't tell from my site statistics. But since posting the interview on climate change with James Hansen, NASA, government downloads have increased 15 fold!

Downloads have changed dramatically over the last 11 years. Initially only radio stations picked up the programs for broadcast. But now so many of you have high speed lines that it is easy for you to listen on line or download.

I watched this development with pride and anxiety. Will anybody continue to buy CDs and DVDs – the only source of funding for TUC Radio? Friends advised me to limit or shut off access. I refused.

It is true - TUC radio can no longer survive by CD sales. The difference is made up from donations and subscriptions, which now amount to almost 25% of the budget. They come in via PayPal or as checks in the mail to: TUC Radio / P.O. Box 44 / Calpella, CA 95418.

I will continue to keep this site free and hope that you will continue to support it. I learned how to do radio from Quakers who believed in a tradition of gift giving. In an increasingly commercialized world, where everything is now for sale, they decided to offer radio for free hoping for listener sponsorship. 

So I am asking you: Please donate or subscribe if you can.

If you like to make a donation by check or money order please mail your gift to:
TUC Radio
P.O. Box 44
Calpella, CA 95418

If you wish to divert some of your money from uses you do not approve of you can make a tax deductible donation by making out a check to ISEC, my fiscal sponsor - who have moved their office to San Francisco:
2017 Mission Street, 2nd floor
San Francisco, CA 94110
telephone (414) 670-9054
Be sure to write
TUC Radio in the memo line.
They will take a small handling  fee and send me a check for TUC Radio.
Thank you very much!

This independent radio web-site has been offering broadcast quality,
noncommercial and free programming since 1992.

Please donate to help me keep it free and open to All!


What people have said about TUC Radio:
The letters below are from my collection, going back 17 years.

"Incredible production!"  "...the most comprehensive and interesting documentaries we've heard....We honor and are inspired by your work."
- Joe Bernard, RFPI, Costa Rica

"Since 1980 the artist turned activist and radio producer has generated groundbreaking programs on the third world debt crisis, WalMart, biotechnology and globalization."
- San Francisco Bay Guardian

"I heard your program on KPFK, Los Angeles: "The Emperor has no Clothes". You have given me more knowledge and insight than any other program I have yet encountered."
- R.M., State Prison, Norco, CA

"Along with David Barsamian and Counterspin, you help me and thousands of others obtain the information we need to retain our sanity."
- David Turner, San Francisco, CA

"Maria Gilardin is a resourceful investigative journalist who not only looks at the events of the day, but puts them into a deeper context - one that gives you an understanding of the powerful forces that exist in the country today."
- Michael Parenti, author and public speaker, Berkeley, CA

Jerry Mander, Director and founder of the IFG, wrote into my copy of the
IFG publication: Alternatives to Economic Globalization

For my dear friend Maria -
You have been a number #1 supporter of all this and a great colleague and friend.
I really appreciate you and your work.
Thank you,

"When looking for a name, I came across a pilot's handbook and found the acronym TUC, an aeronautical term. 

"Time of Useful Consciousness" is the time between the onset of oxygen deficiency and the loss of consciousness.

These are the brief moments in which a pilot may save the plane."

Maria Gilardin


Apocalypse Now
How Mankind Is Sleepwalking to the End of the Earth
"This headline appeared in the London Independent in early February of 2005, following a conference at the Hadley Centre in Exeter, England, where 200 of the world’s leading scientists issued the most urgent warning to date: that dangerous climate change is taking place today, and not the day after tomorrow."
September 21, 2005

Apocalypse Now
How Mankind Is Sleepwalking to the End of the Earth
The editor of the ECOLOGIST, UK, contacted me and asked to prepare a shorter, updated version of this article.

February 1, 2006

Who Killed Martin Luther King?
This article is based on the remarkable work of Dr. William Pepper who exonerated James Earl Ray
"In 1977 the family of Martin Luther King engaged an attorney and friend, Dr. William Pepper, to investigate a suspicion they had. They no longer believed that James Earl Ray was the killer. For their peace of mind, for an accurate record of history, and out of a sense of justice they conducted a two decade long investigation. The evidence they uncovered was put before a jury in Memphis, TN, in November 1999. 70 witnesses testified under oath, 4,000 pages of transcripts described the evidence, much of it new. It took the jury 59 minutes to come back with their decision that Loyd Jowers, owner of Jim's Grill, had participated in a conspiracy to kill King, a conspiracy that included J. Edgar Hoover and the FBI, Richard Helms and the CIA, the military, the Memphis Police Department (MPD), and organized crime. That verdict exonerated James Earl Ray who had already died in prison.

The news of the verdict, in one of the most important national security trials in modern history, was suppressed. And to this day - with very, very few exceptions - the public does not know that this trial took place and what the outcome was."

April 4th, 2008

Inviting the Cannibals for Dinner
This article was written as part of a, sadly unsuccessful, campaign to prevent WalMart from building a store in Ukiah, CA.
Although written in 1992 and focusing on the destruction of Main Street, the article is still timely. In early 2010 WalMart is trying to expand the grocery section, challenging the emerging vibrant local food market.


My Strawbale House
I got many requests for pictures of my straw bale house. Here are photos - from bale delivery to the passive solar floor, and the almost completed solarium, spanning six years.

Thanks to all of you who have supported TUC Radio. Looking around my new home there is so much evidence of your contributions. You have helped me buy everything this house is made of from straw bales and lumber to roll roofing and nails – a little over $15,000 over the past 5 years.

The land
I am 8 miles from the nearest town on a three mile dirt road. There is no water, electricity or other utility. We are collecting rainwater, pumping drinking water from a spring 2 miles away and are using an outhouse. "Out" is over 200 feet away - a long way when it snows!

This is so far from "civilization" that we have occasional encounters with brown bears and mountain lions. Coyotes come often at night, hunting for plentiful deer. There are rattlesnakes living under my house and inside the retaining wall. Some neighbors kill rattlers near their homes. I decided to let them live, treat them with respect and wear boots.

This is an old "back to the land" community. Many of the neighbors who moved here 30 years ago are still living here. I'm helping in a garden that has nourished 5 children, who have all left the ranch, in return for an abundance of vegetables, berries, and fruit. We are canning together in the summer. Another neighbor has a small farm with chickens and goats and we get eggs, cheese and occasional meat from them.

The sense of empowerment that comes from our independence from the system can be challenged when the water line breaks who knows where, the sun does not shine for days on end and I'm using candles to conserve the charge in the batteries for another TUC Radio program, the chainsaw does not start when a tree is down across the road, blocking the way to town - the list can be long.

But occasional visitors, unless I put them to work chopping firewood, only see its beauty - and I do too, every day.

Moving here
I decided to move here because the cost of living is less than half of city life. This is the only way to keep TUC Radio and me going without a retirement plan. I transferred all of TUC Radio and my life here in the summer of 2008.  Two weeks later the worst fires (the Summer Solstice Lightning Fires) since records were kept swept through the area and came close to my house. For 6 weeks the forests were burning on two sides - in the canyon to the North and around the famous sites of Montgomery (Red)Woods and Orr Hot Springs to the West.
Neighbors helped each other - even those who were not on speaking terms. In the end we were in awe of the fires we had seen and very happy that we had worked together so well and survived.

Living here:
July 16, 2013 - update from August 2012:


BEFORE and AFTER - This is my Sun Shed, for solar electric and solar hot water, a wood stove inside also makes hot water for a shower and a utility sink for laundry. A small electric pump brings hot water into the radiant floor of my straw bale house. All the difficulties building this are forgotten. The expanded electric system is now running a Sunfrost refrigerator and all of TUC Radio as well as my personal electric use.
One year summary:
There was hot water from the sun year round, except for 2 weeks. In one year I used 16 gallons of gasoline in my generator to replenish the solar electric system when the sun did not shine. During that same time I used our community ranch house shower 5 times. Net effect: Propane use for hot water: down to Zero. Gasoline for electric: 16 gallons in one year. I still share my neighbor's cook stove which runs on propane but use the solar cooker at least once a week - even in the winter - even in the snow.

Send a message when you visit:
<tuc@tucradio.org >

(come back for updates ..)

May 15, 2011
Catching the last rains in a small run-off: TUC Radio power station.
This past winter I used only 2 gallons of gasoline to run my Honda generator to replenish the batteries in my solar power system. That's due to my own power station, a converted automobile generator. The fan belt pulley is exchanged for a pelton wheel driven by water borrowed from the small winter runoff above and fed back into the wash once it goes through the generator. This hydro is a historic relic - a more refined version is in the Ukiah museum. It was invented in the early days of the back-to-the-land movement when creative people built low tech generators, pumps and wind mills from scrap.
Hydro System_ PickleBarrel

A recycled pickle barrel catches some of the water coming down the wash. Water shoots down the 1 1/2 inch line, bursts through a jet nozzle and turns the pelton wheel at the bottom of the hydro. It only works when it rains since this is not a year round stream - but it does work when it is most needed: on dark rainy days and weeks on end when little sun was reaching the solar panels.

November 2010
This retired tanker, once owned by tattoo artist Lyle Tuttle, was towed to the hill above my house to serve as emergency water supply in case of fire.

Leaves and branches had fallen into the open hatches while it was parked. I had to get inside and clean them out. My neighbor Dusty came by and helped.

It was pretty dark inside and I used a flashlight tied to my hat. They say that it is often easier to get inside a tight spot than to get out. It was a good thing that Dusty was there.

This fire from July 20/21, 2009 was the reminder that we need to protect ourselves.
The Sheppard fire started in Robinson Creek. Thanks to the amazing pilots who flew out of Ukiah!


CALFire plane dropping retardant.

Photos: Ukiah Daily Journal

Summer 2010

Hornets built their nest under my cabin roof overhang early this summer. Knowing that I needed to replace the roof I considered destroying the nest. Instead I decided to respect their space & provide water. The nest grew bigger. When time came to work on the roof they rammed but never stung me.

Summer 2010

My neighbor Debra has over 20 chickens in many shapes and colors. They run free in spite of roaming hawks. At night they are in a coop, protected from raccoons and bobcats. They like to come inside and sit on the sofa.

Early summer 2010

A young rattlesnake came inside my house on an unseasonably cool day and enjoyed warming up behind the slider window.

Early summer 2010

I bought a used Sun Oven and found SO many uses. The first whole chicken that I made was overcooked because I had not yet confidence into the power of the sun. It was still very juicy. On the right is my favorite sourdough rye bread with the sign of the sun carved into the top.

March 2010

My neighbor MB has 15 goats and I have come to realize how funny, easy to raise, and productive they are. MB milks them, makes cheese and yes, also has a butcher come by. I'm helping bottle feed Snowflake who was rejected by her mom.

December 15, 2009
I gave up the live-work studio that was the home for TUC Radio for 22 years
. It was sublet for the last year to give me time to figure out whether I was able to maintain a studio in town. I was unable to afford it and let it go. This 600 square foot studio on the second floor of the former American Can Company in the San Francisco Mission District was just an empty space with 14 foot high ceilings in 1987.

Over time I built the loft, sound studio for TUC, kitchen corner etc. The second photo is not sharp because the place was so empty when I shot this good-bye photo that the camera found nothing to focus on. Many good things happened here!

November 12, 2009

Phone line - the only connection to "civilization".

Just in time for the winter rains I replaced my old phone line with 400 feet of shielded cable. The old line had been chewed on by mice and dug up by wild pigs as it crosses the forest floor to the nearest phone connection. Now I'm ready to do interviews by phone

July 5, 2009
My neighbor gave me an oak tree.
It had fallen three days ago during the night. About 2 1/2 foot in diameter at the base, the trunk and crown of the tree had buried a fork in a back road cutting off access for two houses. The tree is one of the best gifts I have received. We do not cut trees for firewood. We wait for them to fall - and often they fall in very inaccessible places where it is impossible to load the rounds into a truck. Now I am the proud owner of a chainsaw and am learning how to use one of the more dangerous tools in the outback.

June 21, 2009
I went to the memorial for the attorney Susan B. Jordan at the Dark Horse Ranch on the Old River Road. I will write more about it when I am able. It was an afternoon to remember for many, many reasons. If you knew her you will guess why, if you don't come back and read more.

June 19/20, 2009
We had the annual solstice party in the barn at the ranch house. Yesterday I helped clean out the old huge hay barn for the dance. It had been a year since the last party and mice had moved into the sofas, big abandoned birds nests were in the rafter, and even deer had somehow gotten inside. We ended up using a garden hose to wash the ancient floor boards and the stage that had been built into one end of barn in the early days of the "back to the landers".

Today David Raitt, Bonnie's brother, came with his band. He joked about bands, even very famous ones, playing in small venues because there is much less touring due to the economic downturn. Bands, who love music, play obscure clubs, like the Blue Wing Saloon, because they want to stay together and play and see people dance.

You don't know the
Blue Wing Saloon? It's in Lakeport, right next to the Tall(-)man Hotel. Monday is blues night - no cover.

come back for updates ..

Many of my radio programs have a personal angle that I do no not mention in the recording.


Many thanks to Carol Brouillet who first inspired me to look at the most amazing secret in plain sight: The creation and control of MONEY

By luck, past connections, and a degree of obstinacy I have come up with four new programs on a radical analysis and change of the monetary system.

There are two reasons: The first - of course - is the collapse of the present system which allows us to look at the Federal Reserve, the power of banks to create money, and the upward distribution of wealth.

The second is the desire and wish to help each other, create safety nets, with community exchange and credit clearing systems. You can find them on the Newest Programs or the Community section as:

Stephen Zarlenga: THE AMERICAN MONETARY ACT; Paul Grignon: MONEY AS DEBT and  - The People of Ithaca print their own money.

The photo is by Sergio Lub. I was recording Tom Greco on May 5, 2009


Helen Caldicott and Lawrence Ferlinghetti

They have not met in person - but both are trying to express what living in the Nuclear age means. I had just recorded Helen again (at the end of June 09) who - for over 30 years - has so passionately described the consequences of radiation - when I got an e-mail from Lorenzo Milam (Who took the idea of community radio and popularized it.)

Milam wrote:

Ferlinghetti was slightly entangled in my life .. What I wanted to tell him (and never got to do so) was that he changed my life. I was working at KPFA as a volunteer in 1959, and one night they played Ferlinghetti reading "Tentative Description of a Dinner to Promote the Impeachment of President Eisenhower" I thought, "How great it would be to have that disc played in Washington D.C."

Milam then helped Pacifica get the license for WPFW. I had never heard about this piece and asked Ferlinghetti, who is now 90 years young, to read it again, 51 years later. The picture on the left is a frame from  the 8 1/2 minute film that I made on July 12, 2009. Ferlinghetti had seen Nagasaki a few weeks after the atom bomb destroyed it. That experience changed his life. The Tentative Description is less about Eisenhower than about all Presidents since then; and about the "strange rain that would never stop .. and perverted pollen blown on sunless seas - eaten by irradiated fish who spawned up cloudleaf streams and fell upon our dinner plates."
Here is a 7 min. 37 sec. audio recording of Ferlinghetti reading.
Here is the film: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fJ61bdAWYoE
Here is the text (as pdf file) in the original publication