In two weeks the Peoples Climate March in New York, organized by 350.org, is expected to draw as many as 200,000 people. The march is to take place only days before a special UN meeting called by Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon to discuss the November 2015 U.N. Climate Conference in Paris.
Christopher Hedges has called this march a “last gasp of climate change liberals;” and “a climate themed street fair.” Our only hope, according to Hedges, “comes from radical groups descending on New York to carry out direct action, including Global Climate Convergence and Popular Resistance.”
Humanity is flying headlong over a climate cliff and reversing course does not project to be very profitable for the global elite.
So, without a growing number of us holding their feet to the ever warming fire, a much need reversal will not happen and the corporately controlled main stream media will continue to portray this topic as one where there are two sides to the story. Consider this typical news copy, filed by the AP, describing the 2012 UN Climate meeting, “the two decade old talks have not fulfilled their main purpose, reducing the greenhouse gas emission that scientists say are warming the earth.” (Emphasis added)
What is that extraneous phrase always included – “that scientists say” included as a qualifier? I mean, it is not as if the AP would, in captioning a satellite picture of Earth, would write, “here is a picture of the planet earth, which scientists say is not flat.”
To make matters worse, the worst offenders will be the last to suffer the consequences. One of the main stated goals of last year’s conference was finding ways to raise climate aid for poor countries at a time when budgets are strained by financial turmoil. Tim Gore of Oxfam said developing countries, including island nations for whom rising sea levels pose a threat to their existence, stand before a “climate fiscal cliff.” and said “So what we need for those countries are firm commitments from rich countries to keep giving money to help them to adapt to climate change.”
In summary: The parties to the UN Climate conference represent governments whose policies and philosophies enable crimes against the environment that have and will continue to cause devastation of the ecological, moral and financial variety to the quote developing countries who do not possess the infrastructure or the wherewithal to contribute to Sodom and Gomorrah show that us developed countries are visiting upon the planet, and will present an existential threat to the less developed countries actual existence, so we will pay them reparations. We all agree that we owe them reparations, I mean, our way of life, to channel Dr. Suess for a moment, our biggering and biggering and biggering turning more Truffala trees into thneeds that everyone NEEDS, is now or will in the not too distant future, literally killing people in less developed countries who are not so busy building thneeds that everyone needs.
So, in addition to destroying the ecosystem and straining to hold up the house of cards that is the global Hyper capitalist financial system, we are thinking that things might get down right scary in a mad max kind of way so we might want to prioritize helping the victims in developing countries who suffer or will suffer the homicidal side effects of our lifestyle. But actually change our lifestyle?No, silly. That’s not on the table, is it?
Question, and again, I am no expert on the subject, but is Capitalism compatible with the health and survival of all of the living things on this rock we call Earth?
What comes after Capitalism? Identifying the correct answer to that question, one I do not pretend to know, in addition to facing the fact that the question is a life or death one on a global scale, is a basic requirement for the life, liberty, and happiness of the human race.
Rushton outlines how investors, pension funds and banks are so heavily invested in companies that earn money by destroying the planet that when the actual wake-up call comes, when the alarm clock goes off and the climate change deniers and their corporate blood sucking psychopaths who pay for the propaganda that enables climate change deniers to pretend that there is still a debate to be had over the Apocalyptic course that human induced climate change has us on – when those people and those beliefs that together want to extract fossil fuel reserves when we KNOW that if the human race is to survive we must leave at least half of current fossil fuel reserves in the ground if not three quarters — when, all the Sean Hannity’s, and Sarah Palin’s and Sen. James Inhofe of Oklahoma – he who, parenthetically it should be noted, likes to quote quotes Genesis 8:22 (While the earth remains, seedtime and harvest, cold and heat, summer and winter, day and night, shall not cease”) and added, ”God’s still up there. The arrogance of people to think that we human beings would be able to change what He is doing in the climate is to me outrageous” – when Tomorrow or tomorrow or tomorrow all these aiding and abetting murders meet the fate of all our yesterdays that have lighted fools the way to dusty death and we wake collectively from our slumber brought on by the gears and the levers that operate the odious machine and we become so sick that we can not take part, even passively take part, and we come together like old flattop grooving up slowly to indicate to the people who own this capitalist machine that unless we are free, this machine will be prevented from working at all and we transition on a massive global shift towards more sustainable energy practices occurs, that funds with heavy carbon exposure- and that number is 95% of all global investment according to the study- will face a shock, that in fact, the carbon bubble will burst and bring own the global financial system.
Ok, that may have been a run on sentence.
To sum up: The economy will crash again, according to Rushton, because we are so addicted to constant growth, and quarterly capitalism that the global financial elite will march us to the edge of the 2 degree climate cliff just to squeeze some more profit from the products and systems that are killing us.
So add one more obstacle to slow the glacial pace (and I mean that in the pre-climate change era of the word) of a coordinated global effort to get the human race untied from the train tracks before the locomotive that is a 2 degree rise in global temperature: our inability to ditch the written and unwritten rules of capitalism.
An Interview with Tim DeChristopher, the founder of Peaceful Uprising. DeChristopher is widely known known for one of the more creative acts of nonviolent insurrection and civil disobedience in recent memory when he disrupted a government oil and gas lease auction in order to protect fragile land in southern Utah from long term damage. That story became the subject of the documentary Bidder 70, and that act resulted in DeChrispher spending 21 months in federal custody.
an education and direct action campaign beginning this spring, with “10 days to change course,” running from Earth Day to May Day. It provides coordinated action and collaboration across fronts of struggle and national borders to harness the transformative power we already possess as a thousand separate movements. These grassroots justice movements are sweeping the globe, rising up against the global assault on our shared economy, ecology, peace and democracy. The accelerating climate disaster, which threatens to unravel civilization as soon as 2050, intensifies all of these struggles and creates new urgency for collaboration and unified action.
The Convergence creates a unifying call for a solution as big as the crisis barreling down on us – an emergency Green Economic Transformation through a Global Green New Deal including universal jobs, health care, education, food and housing security, economic and political democracy, demilitarization, an end to deportations, and 100% clean renewable energy by 2030.
For the State Department to suggest that the Keystone XL pipeline will not have a negative impact on the environment is like Walter White telling Phillip Seymour Hoffman that heroin is as healthy as kale.
If one reads the Obama administration State Department’s Final Environmental Study on the KXL pipeline it is almost as if the State department subcontracted the study to a company with vast financial ties to the oil and gas industry.
“in early March, the State Department released a 2,000-page draft report downplaying the environmental risks of the northern portion of the controversial Keystone XL pipeline (…) But when it released the report, State hid an important fact from the public: Experts who helped draft the report had previously worked for TransCanada, the company looking to build the Keystone pipeline, and other energy companies poised to benefit from Keystone’s construction. State released documents in conjunction with the Keystone report in which these experts’ work histories were redacted so that anyone reading the documents wouldn’t know who’d previously hired them. Yet unredacted versions of these documents obtained by Mother Jones confirm that three experts working for an outside contractor had done consulting work for TransCanada and other oil companies with a stake in the Keystone’s approval.”
Barack Obama may as well have delivered his 5th State of the Union address to and for the Superstate Oceania, the fictional empire mired in perpetual war from George Orwell’s 1984.
No, Obama did not come directly out and tell us that war is peace, freedom is slavery and ignorance is strength so much as he embodied those ideas in a nuanced, measured performance that inspired the political pundits like Chris Matthews to wax poetic like a theatre critic praising an aging stage actor who was able to find the old magic one last time.
Lee Camp and I discuss the (actual) state of the union, Obama’s “all of the above” energy policy as it relates to jobs, corporate profits and the climate crisis, and how blindly “supporting for the troops” is unhealthy for children and all other living things.
Lee Camp (bio)
Lee is comedian, writer, and activist. He is the host of the popular Moment of Clarity, which is now a video series, a book, and a full show. His stand-up comedy has garnered praise from a who’s who of comedians and activists alike.
In what should be another colossal embarrassment for the United States- recently leaked internal documents show how little our government is prepared to take responsibility for the damage done by climate change, the negative effects of which are caused by our hyper capitalist culture of consumption without consequence.
“In an internal briefing paper prepared for its diplomats across the world ahead of the Warsaw climate negotiations, which The Hindu has accessed, the U.S. has opposed the setting up of a separate process on ‘loss and damage’, pushed primarily for the role of private investments and finance in providing the promised money to the poor countries to adapt to climate change and have a 2015 climate agreement where no country is forced to take higher emission reduction pledges than the ones they initially volunteer. It also informed its diplomats to keep pushing the line with other countries that the U.S. was doing enough domestically on the climate change front and these were priorities for President Barack Obama and John Kerry.”
There are two things at play here. One is setting limits and playing a chess game over who will pay for the climate change damage that will come – and disproportionally affect less developed countries that have not the means to defend themselves from human induced climate change or contribute to the conditions that will harm or kill them The other thing at play, the Giant Pink Elephant in the room that our world leaders can’t seem to deal with is the reality, as outlined in a study by the Global Carbon Project, of a 4 or 6 degree Celsius increase in global temperatures that could mark a significant and perhaps final chapter in the story of our species.
The scale of death and destruction is hard to wrap your head around. Several days after Super Typhoon Haiyan slammed the Philippines, we still do not have a full picture of the scale of death and destruction that lay in its wake.
Estimates put the number of dead in the city of Tacloban alone at 10,000, and scores of survivors in that city are now in desperate need of food, clean water and shelter.
Trying to make sense of the disaster, many are quick to point to the man-made causes for the increase of violent weather events, like the scene that played out on Piers Morgan recently wherein Mark Hertsgaard berated Morgan for allowing a “climate denier” to speak on live television. CNN’s Morgan held his ground, insisting it is only fair to allow both sides of the debate to be aired.
The problem with this “debate” is that when 97% of climate scientists assert that climate change is linked to human behavior, and then there should no more be “two sides” to this debate than there are two sides to a debate concerning creationism vs. evolution.
If there truly are two sides to the argument, lets have a fair debate. Consider the following scenarios:
Scenario A: Climate activists and hippie tree huggers are spending their paltry little budgets in a global conspiracy with 97% of the worlds climate scientists to trick you into changing civilizations unsustainable consumption without consequence way of life?
Scenario B: Exxon, BP, Chevron and others are spending their and bottomless budgets bribing anyone with their hand out to create misleading ad campaign of the covert overt and embedded variety to protect and expand their profits, limit their future criminal liability.
In what will come as a surprise to almost no one, 2012 was another record year for the volume of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere, according to the World Meteorological Organization (WMO).
Breaking records every year for the greenhouse gases that cause climate change make it less likely than we humans can slow or reverse the effects of human caused climate change and keep global warming within the 2 degree Celsius target, set at a Copenhagen summit in 2009. WMO Secretary-General Michel Jarraud, speaking at a press conference ahead of next weeks UN conference to work on emissions cuts said: “The increase in CO2 is mostly due to human activities. The actions we take now or don’t take now will have consequences for a very, very long period. Even if we were able to stop today — we know it’s not possible — the ocean would continue to warm and to expand and the sea level would continue to rise for hundreds of years.”
Right now, nearly 200 countries begin meetings in oil-and-gas-rich Qatar for annual talks on slowing global warming- and no, I am not quoting the Onion, I am quoting the AP, which goes on to sum up the effectiveness of the UN Climate Change conference by saying “The two-decade-old talks have not fulfilled their main purpose: reducing the greenhouse gas emissions that scientists say are warming the planet.” (emphasis mine)
Why that qualifier still? It’s not as if, when describing a satellite picture of earth, the AP would say here is a picture of earth, which scientist say is not flat.
There is a scientific consensus on this. Human behavior is causing global warming. And I not talking about those lazy days when you get the Styrofoam cup at dunkin dougnuts instead of brining your canteen for them to fill up – it is the sheer volume of dunkin doughnuts in strip malls serving syburbs populated with big ass houses with cars that drive to many places to buy shit that we don’t need shipped in fropm all over the world at low low low basement bargain prices kept that way by a domineering military enforcing a global economic system of Imperialism and disaster capitalism.
Now, I don’t claim to be the brightest bulb in the world, but hosting a Climate Change conference in a country whose wealth depends on the global addiction to the greenhouse gas emitting, global climate crisis creating black sludge seems to be a bit counterintuitive, no? In actuality, the UN Climate Conference is in no hurry to slow global warming; instead one of the main stated goals of this year’s conference will be raising climate aid for poor countries at a time when budgets are strained by financial turmoil.
Tim Gore of Oxfam said developing countries, including island nations for whom rising sea levels pose a threat to their existence, stand before a “climate fiscal cliff.” And said “So what we need for those countries in the next two weeks are firm commitments from rich countries to keep giving money to help them to adapt to climate change,”
In summary: The parties to the conference have committed crimes against the environment that have and will continue to cause devastation of the ecological, moral and financial variety to the quote developing countries who have not the infrastructure to contribute in soddam gamora shit that us developed countries are visiting on the planet, so we will pay them reparations. We all agree that we owe them reparations, but we developed countries, lead by the United States– in addition to destroying the ecosystem are also straining to hold up the house of cards that is the global Hypercapitalist financial system, and we are thinking that things might get down right scary in a mad max kind of way so we might not prioritize helping the victims in developing countries who suffer or will suffer the homicidal side effects of our lifestyle.
Question, and again, I’m no expert on the subject, but is it possible that to save the planet the developed nations actually need to become, well, less developed?
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