Collapsed Civilization. Leadership. Harmony.

There are examples of all three in “Dawn of the Planet of the Apes.”

Dawn-of-the-Planet-of-the-Apes1Yesterday, I was among the first hundred people on the East coast who watched Dawn of the Planet of the Apes—enjoying it in a plush theater at 10 o’clock in the morning in 3D. (Don’t worry, no spoiler alert necessary here.)

Why did I want to see it? Last week, I watched an interview of the movie’s producers and realized that not only did it contain a powerful social message, it had other things in common with Avatar. Turns out that the producers met with Avatar’s director, James Cameron in addition to the great Steven Spielberg, collaborating with them on technology and ideas for their movie.

It would appear that those consultations with the greatest two movie directors of all time—paid off handsomely for the viewers. It is a masterpiece. In the paragraphs below, I will try to describe the valuable “take-aways” for me in the movie—without giving away the plot for those of you who have not yet seen it.

Of course, on the morning of 7-12-14, that would be over 99% of the world’s total population. Here are those three powerful examples that I saw:

The apes see the first human that they've seen in ten years.

The apes see the first human they’ve seen in years.

1. Harmony. The first scenes of the movie were set at John Muir State Park north of San Francisco and featured a large colony of highly intelligent apes who were living their lives in complete harmony with the planet.They hadn’t seen a human in years and were thinking that their species may no longer exist.

Later in the movie, the few surviving humans of San Francisco realized that, unlike themselves, their perceived enemy—the throng of apes north of the city didn’t need electric energy or fossil fuel like they did. In fact, they fully understood that the apes didn’t need anything to survive—just mother nature.

Alpha male Caesar in the foreground

Alpha male Caesar in the foreground

2. Leadership. Shortly after the movie began, I noticed the powerful “leadership” example in the alpha male ape who went by the name of Caesar.

Without giving away the movie’s plot, this special creature exhibited the wisdom of Job as he strived to orchestrate a peaceful coexistence for themselves and the planet’s remaining humans. I should point out that one or two of the humans exhibited exceptional leadership as well—but not quite enough to prevent unnecessary loss of lives on both sides.

In the past year, leadership has been my primary focus. As a corporate headhunter for the last fifteen years, I have essentially been operating in the leadership business. That experience has taught me that we should never doubt the incredible miracles that can occur when the right leadership is in place.

That’s why I continue to serve my client (all the children of the world) as I relentlessly search for that one powerful leader we need to help move us rapidly in the direction of living in harmony with nature.

Downtown San Francisco, one of the world's most beautiful cities---before the collapse of civilization

Downtown San Francisco, one of the world’s most beautiful cities—before the collapse of civilization

3. Collapsed Civilization. Lately, as I write about the almost certain collapse of our civilization before the end of this century, I realize that it might be difficult for most people to visualize what that might look like.

This movie does a great job of painting a very graphic picture of a completely collapsed and fragmented civilization. With no electronic communications, the San Francisco survivors have no way of knowing whether there are other pockets of survivors around the world.

What was in it for me? Without a doubt, the three examples so clearly illustrated in the movie, further strengthened my resolve to continue my search for that one powerful leader and a few caring billionaires. Many people continue to tell me that I’m wasting my time—but I have decided not to stop until I am convinced that there is another, more viable path to preventing the collapse of our civilization during the lifetimes of my six grandchildren.

Three reasons for my optimism

  1. We only need to find one powerful leader. Then, he/she brings in the few caring billionaires. In all likelihood, that leader is not now “fully aware” of the importance of our food choices. But if he/she truly cares about the future of their own grandchildren AND has an open mind, it won’t take us long to bring about the conversion to a Caesar-like leader who is ready to give his/her all to save our civilization. And that leader will URGENTLY begin to sell the idea to billions that moving rapidly toward a mostly plant-based diet—is by far the single biggest step we can take—doing more for sustainability than all other possible steps combined. Consider that, right now, NO PROMINENT LEADER anywhere is fully committed to getting that done. And most are completely unaware of the possibility.
  2. I don’t think any other approach is going to work. We simply don’t have enough time. As a business executive and corporate recruiter, I know a thing or two about the miracles that can happen when you have the right kind of fully committed leadership. I’m talking about a leader who fully realizes that we are now facing the most important issue in the history of humanity—and is willing to make it his/her TOP PRIORITY: 24–7–365. This is not the job for a half-hearted, “meatless Monday” or “sustainable beef” kind of person.
  3. Understanding mission and recruiting leadership is what I do.  And I have concluded that it’s the single biggest contribution that I can make personally—leveraging my unique combination of engineering & business experience, skills and talent to the greatest extent possible. I have already made some headway with a few potential “candidates” and have a few others that I am pursuing. I will not give up.

The Bottom Line. Go see the movie and be on the lookout for those three examples that I mentioned. One more thing, like Avatar, Rocky and many others—there will be more sequels to this remarkable film. Enjoy!

You're going to like Caesar, the kind of leader we need.

You’re going to like Caesar, the kind of leader we need.

A few other blogs on this topic:

The following five books and one DVD can be purchased on Amazon for a grand total of less than $60—and will enable you to understand the overwhelming challenges we face—along with the single most-powerful solution of all.

Six-Pack from Hicks—for health, hope & harmony on planet Earth

  1. Healthy Eating, Healthy WorldThe “big picture” about food (our book)
  2. A life changer for millions, including James Cameron. Forks Over Knives DVD 
  3. An essential scientific resource: The China Study by Dr. T. Colin Campbell; the primary book that influenced Bill Clinton to adopt a whole food, plant-based diet.
  4. What have we done to our planet? Full Planet, Empty Plates by Lester Brown
  5. A horrifying wake-up call for leaders. TEN BILLION by Dr. Stephen Emmott
  6. Food choices are the primary cause of our environmental problems, yet our world leaders, scientists & experts are Comfortably Unawareby Richard Oppenlander.

Why should we be eating mostly plants? The “big picture” in 4 minutes.

Want to find out how healthy your family is eating? Take our free 4Leaf Survey. It takes 2 or 3 minutes and you can score it yourself. After taking the survey, please give me your feedback as it will be helpful in the development of our future 4Leaf app for smartphones. Send feedback to

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J. Morris Hicks, working daily to promote health, hope and harmony on planet Earth.

To order more of my favorite books—visit our online BookStore now For help in your own quest to take charge of your health, visit our 4Leaf page and also enjoy some great recipes from Lisa’s 4Leaf Kitchen. Got a question? Let me hear from you at Or give me a call on my cell at 917-399-9700.

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About J. Morris Hicks

A former strategic management consultant and senior corporate executive with Ralph Lauren in New York, J. Morris Hicks has always focused on the "big picture" when analyzing any issue. In 2002, after becoming curious about our "optimal diet," he began a study of what we eat from a global perspective ---- discovering many startling issues and opportunities along the way. In addition to an MBA and a BS in Industrial Engineering, he holds a certificate in plant-based nutrition from the T. Colin Campbell Center for Nutrition Studies, where he has also been a member of the board of directors since 2012. Having concluded that our food choices hold the key to the sustainability of our civilization, he has made this his #1 priority---exploring all avenues for influencing humans everywhere to move back to the natural plant-based diet for our species.
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2 Responses to Collapsed Civilization. Leadership. Harmony.

  1. Mary Guay says:

    Like Carolyn, the idea that you are wasting your time is the opposite of the truth. Given the crisis humans face, to not do all you can to save a livable planet for grandchildren is unthinkable. Joanne Irwin read my book and turned me on to you and your efforts. I had read several of your recommended books and have now read them all. My book, CLIMATE CHANGE: OUR CHILDREN ARE IN DANGER, explains climate change, its consequences and actions I was able take to decrease my carbon footprint. You have convinced me that working to urge others to move to a plant-based diet is the most effective and quickest life saving measure we can take. Once we understand what is at stake, it is impossible to give up. I must “leave something to the kids”-a planet to live on!
    I believe you have tried Ted Turner. He understands climate change and has been trying to get our leaders to learn about climate change and act to protect our children’s futures. Could Lester Brown assist you in urging Ted Turner to take on the leading role? Mary Guay

  2. Carolyn Hogg says:

    Thank you for this post, Jim! I’m disappointed to hear that some people tell you that you are wasting your time. Please keep up your efforts because you give many of us hope! A suggestion for the powerful leader – Steve Wynn! He’s also a billionaire and is vegan.

    Many thanks, Carolyn Hogg New London, Connecticut

    Sent from my iPad


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