Damien Mander on Becoming an Anti-Poaching Warrior and Rediscovering His Heart: PYP 225

Damien Mander's entire identity centered around war: as a 19-year-old who joined the Australian Royal Navy and trained as a clearance diver; as a spec-ops sniper; as a member of an elite Tactical Assault Group; and as a special operations soldier in Iraq for three years. After leaving Iraq in 2008 after 12 tours of duty, Damien was burned out, dispirited, and ill-equipped to manage in civilian society. Still addicted to adventure and thrill, he found his way to Southern Africa, where he started working with the rangers and organizations dedicated to protecting the big animals of Africa from poachers. Read more »

Radically Self-Reliant Veganic Gardening with Will Bonsall: PYP 224

Will Bonsall is my new hero, and I say that without exaggeration. Check out the short video clip at the top of the Links section below to see half of the reason why. The other half of the reason take a bit longer to explain - hence this full-length podcast episode. Will is the visionary gardener whose half-century of experimentation and iconoclasm can help us save human civilization from collapse. His method, which he refers to as "gardening without borders," takes into account all the inputs and outputs of a garden or farm, in contrast to the usual methods of conventional, organic, and permaculture production. Read more »

Brian Kateman on Reducing Animal Consumption by Building a Big Tent: PYP 204

Brian Kateman is cofounder of the burgeoning Reducetarian movement, and one of the bright young stars in the fight to save humanity, animals, and planet earth from spiraling into an unredeemable mess. Brian reached out to me about a year ago, sharing a modest vision for an edited book designed not to turn ordinary people into vegetarians or vegans, but simply to encourage and empower them to eat less meat. Read more »

Saving America by Reforming Health Insurance with Ken Beckman: PYP 200

Ken Beckman is an actuary in the health insurance field. (Now hang on, you non-math folks - this is going to be a lot more interesting (and accessible) than you might think. Give us a chance here... :) After getting turned on to the health benefits of a plant-based diet, Ken began seeing the health insurance industry in a radically new light. If the best possible outcome is a slow decline mediated by appropriate drugs and timely procedures, then we're probably doing OK. Read more »

Healing from Whiteness with Tad Hargrave: PYP 192

Tad Hargrave is an environmental activist and marketing teacher whose heartfelt wisdom and elegant and ethical strategies inspired and guided much of my own thinking when I was in the online marketing field. We've stayed in touch over the years, and as Tad is a prolific writer, I spend a fair amount of time pondering his pensive and powerful essays on, basically, how to be a courteous and committed ally to those on the planet who are suffering. Read more »

Obesity, Disease, and Fat Shaming: a Conversation on the Curiously Veg Podcast

Josh LaJaunie and I had a spirited conversation with Hope Hughes and David Powell, hosts of the Curiously Veg Podcast, about a recent BBC documentary which featured the autopsy of an obese woman. Hope and David were taken aback by critics who accused the film of fat shaming. They reached […] Read more »

PYP 172: Marta Zaraska on Why We’re Meathooked and How to Unhook Ourselves

Marta Zaraska is the author of Meathooked: The History and Science of Our 2.5-Million-Years Obsession with Meat, which was just published this year (2016). Marta writes about science and health for some of the most influential and prestigious publications, including Scientific American, The Atlantic, and the Washington Post. And now that she's been published on the Plant Yourself Podcast, I suppose she's reached the height of achievement ;) Read more »

PYP 159: Glen Merzer on Writing, Standup, and the Politics of Healthcare

Glen Merzer juggles multiple careers with a grace and impact that makes me a bit jealous. From standup comedy in 1980s San Francisco, to sitcom writing, to screenplays, to non-fiction collaborations with plant-based authors, to his very own novel (now I'm a lot jealous!), Glen is doing a lot of good in the world through his pen. Read more »

PYP 157: Keegan Kuhn on Not Hurting Anybody and Questioning Authority

Keegan Kuhn was raised with two rules: don’t hurt anybody, and question authority. Judging by what’s he’s become and what he’s accomplished, I think those two rules may comprise a necessary and sufficient philosophy of child-rearing. Keegan is an accomplished bio-intensive farm and garden developer, a social activist, and a documentary filmmaker whose latest project, What the Health?, promises to rip the cover off the pharmaceutical / medical / agricultural conspiracy to ruin our health. Read more »