Toward the end of his life, Art Rosenblum became the Kelp King. Taking generous quantities of kelp was, for him, a kind of Fountain of Youth. Kelp – common seaweed – has vast health benefits. Besides being an excellent source of minerals from the sea – especially iodine, essential for thyroid function – kelp raises metabolism, lowers cholesterol, promotes healing, increases energy, boosts immunity and detoxifies the body.

Keep kelp capsules on the shelf in case of nuclear catastrophe. And then, build a bomb shelter or a safe room. And hide.

If Art Rosenblum had not been killed at age 74 in an automobile accident early this summer, who knows how long kelp, and the Higher Power, might have kept him alive. This man was a national treasure. Wishing him a final “peace and love,” his wife, Judy, poignantly memorialized him:

Art Rosenblum was a peace activist since the ’60s, a writer, printer, pilot, mechanic and inventor who lived in the future, called himself a futurist and had a clear vision of the planet ruled by love.

When he was 20, Art went to Paraguay to join the pacifist Christian community called the Society of Brothers, which followed the teachings of Jesus and held all things in common. He lived with them until he was 38, when he struck out on his own. For two years, he traveled all over the country, setting up print shops for groups opposing the Vietnam War, asking only room and board in communes along the way.

In 1969, he came to the Germantown neighborhood of Philadelphia to start a commune devoted to finding ways to bring about a whole new age of peace and love to the world. He created a small nonprofit organization called Aquarian Research Foundation. He wrote a newsletter for over 30 years about alternative lifestyles, safe energy, psychic research and sustainable living. The first five years of the newsletter are published in his book, “Unpopular Science.”

Art had an offset press in his dining room, which he used to print newsletters and also a booklet on natural birth control, which became a book that sold over 90,000 copies. When we married in 1976, after a 28-day courtship, I helped him edit the fifth edition. The next year, Art became a pilot at age 49 and started flying people all over to visit intentional communities. He took in printing apprentices to work for peace groups that needed printing done at cost. He printed and distributed 300,000 “Big Party” invitations in 1984 to visualize and celebrate, in advance, world disarmament.

In 1988, he flew a Soviet social scientist to visit intentional communities in the U.S., and we wrote and produced the first video on such communities, called “Where’s Utopia?” He influenced Ted Turner to create the Turner Tomorrow Award, resulting in the prize-winning book, “Ishmael,” by Daniel Quinn, who befriended Art.

He raised our two kids, April and Joel, to be loving, free, creative and caring about the needs of the world. He picked up every hitchhiker on the road that could fit in the car. He took in homeless people. He championed home birth, home schooling, communal living, natural foods, alternative medicine and every cause that came down the road.

He flew his small plane to Cuba a few times at age 70. He took in Freedom Summer kids to sleep on our floors every year. He got himself arrested for civil disobedience trying to free Mumia Abu-Jamal. He promoted the Disclosure Project’s efforts to get UFO information out in the open.

At 74, Seaweed Man still bounded down stairs two at a time and built a loft with our daughter. He spent his last years writing articles to his listserv and teaching our son about electronics and politics. He started a free radio station, which the FCC shut down. He threw out our old printing press and got two old copy machines and made handouts about Dennis Kucinich, and Israeli refuseniks.

On his last drive out, he was transporting a computer for a project mentoring local disadvantaged kids.

Art wanted a world without money where everyone’s needs would be met. He deeply believed if he worked for the universe, the universe would work for him. He never gave up trying. He said, “The difficult things we do right away. The impossible takes a bit longer.” He didn’t believe in death. He thought he could be more effective from the other side. He said that death is just a change of lifestyle.

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