Peace seminars

Swords to Ploughs

a project of the Houston Space Society, Inc.

Depart from evil and do good; seek peace and pursue it.
~ Psalm 34:14

Our idea is to create a series of Peace Seminars. The first of these seminars will be later in 2019, feature two speakers and at least one musician, and include a catered after party. Subsequent seminars this year and next are intended to focus attention on wars and on violence in our homes and communities, including especially violence toward those least able to defend themselves, and slavery. By holding these seminars during 2020 and bringing attention to their topics, we may expect to encourage people to speak on the issue.

In the mid-1970s there was great interest in space travel, especially the concept of building artificial space habitats the size of cities in various orbits from lunar and asteroidal materials.  After the revelations of the Pentagon Papers, the Watergate hearings, the Select Committee on Assassinations hearings, and the Frank Church committee hearings on intelligence agencies, there was great interest in America in fewer wars, ending the draft, pardoning the draft avoiders, curtailing the powers of the CIA and its tendency to assassinate domestic and foreign political leaders, and in making our environment better.  The space settlement movement was about "turning our swords into ploughshares" by using missile technology not for delivering explosions to other people, but for moving people and equipment into space.

"And he shall judge among the nations, and shall rebuke many people; and they shall beat their swords into ploughshares, and their spears into pruninghooks: nation shall not lift up sword against nation, neither shall they study war any more." ~ Isaiah 2:4

A great deal of research was done between 1968 and 1975 on the topic, including quite a lot by Dr. Gerard K. O'Neill of Princeton.  His ideas included space solar power satellites to create concentrated power that could be beamed to Earth much as Tesla had envisioned fifty years earlier.  Many dirty industries such as mining and refining would be moved into space, where there are no endangered species of plants and animals to disturb.  There are hundreds of novels and hundreds of thousands of science and engineering papers on these proposals.

So we are creating a "Swords into Ploughshares" project to describe how war among humans might be ended forever, how people might come to occupy our place in the Solar System, have access to the cornucopia of resources in our universe, and cooperate on the grand adventure of exploring and understanding where we are in the vast scheme of things. 

It seems to us that the first big step is to build a single seminar with two speakers, some music, an audience of perhaps 1,200 to 1,500 persons, catered food, a venue in, say, Las Vegas where people frequently travel for events, or, say, in Atlanta which is also a travel stopover, especially for folks who fly on Delta Airlines, or wherever it seems most appropriate.  Our preliminary calculations on this topic suggest that gate, sponsors, merchandise, and other revenues might bring in a total of $300,000 before film rights and other fees, and so it would be possible to generate net cash flow of perhaps $50,000 from this first event.

Who would you choose to hear from about war, about peace, about being prepared for the future, about space settlement, about domestic violence, about sexual violence, about the predatory child trafficking in Hollywood, DC, New York, London, and elsewhere?  Please write to us or join the conversation on Twitter, and share your thoughts.

War and violence affects everyone. It is time to end the strife in our world. Please join us.

The Houston Space Society is a 501c3 organisation founded in 1988. Write to us at:
Swords to Ploughs
c/o Jim Davidson
1349 Wyoming Street
Dayton, Ohio 45410



Jim Davidson is vision director for and founder of Individual Sovereign University and the Resilient Ways Foundation. He is currently chief financial officer for a start-up social networking and talent agency company and chief executive officer for a self-storage structure start-up. Jim grew up in Kansas where he became a National Merit Scholar and Kansas Scholar, won debate trophies, and acted in theatre. He attended Columbia University as a John Jay Scholar, studying history, astrophysics, and economics. He completed an MBA at Rice University. He has worked in banking, aerospace, real estate development, management consulting, software development, digital currencies, and many other industries. He’s the author of several hundred business plans, business documents, and four books.