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  • Dare we ask how you became so familiar with the goings-on at The Club, Peterr?

  • We should just start referring to him as “Hash Master Todd.”

  • Gus, yesterday we had an amazing book salon with James Risen re his “Pay Any Price.” His reporting on the BILLIONS of dollars wasted in Iraq, Afghanistan and the “war on terror” is staggering. [I highly, highly recommend his book and the ensuing discussion.] We’re talking about millions stolen, “lost,” embezzled or otherwise misappropriated. All this in ADDITION to the gobs of money spend on weapons.

    Amid the perpetual howls re budget-balancing, it would be terrific if environmentalists and others could get folks to focus on this outright thievery. Recover the money and put it to good use.

    Of course this is why the government is hounding Risen and others on this issue.

  • for example Chuck Todd who made a hash of it today.

    Chuck Todd is a Hash Master of many subjects.

  • I have a friend who works in the LA office of NRDC. For several years they have been able to take advantage of the rotten market for new lawyers by providing a place where some can work, on their law firm’s dime, for a year. [Firms made offers to grads, then didn't want to go through because insufficient business/income. So firm offered a reduced rate of compensation if grad would go "work for a non-profit" for a year, then firm would reconsider if they could renew their original job offer].

    They’ve had some really high quality talent via this. So, one small “good thing” out of bad.

  • Yes, I’m really scared about Keystone. Particularly the “Obama may use it as a bargaining chip.”

    What horrid deal is he going to make in exchange for the health of our planet? Based on his past record, nothing good.

  • Maybe one possible Good Thing to come from the horrid student debt/post-grad impoverishment situation is that more people will opt out of Black Friday shopping, gadget envy and all the other consumer ills. Instead they’ll discover that life can be pleasant without the “frills.”

    Of course they need enough for food and shelter, but maybe they’ll learn to reject this other junk. I’d really love to see folks boycott “Black Friday” and Walmart.

  • One of the points you make in the book is how the country has adopted the worst of the traits of the South.

    [quoting Peter Applehome] Think of a place . . . where the word ‘liberal’ is a negative epithet, where hang-’em-high law-and-order justice centered on the death penalty and throw-away-the-key sentencing are politically all but unstoppable. Think of a place obsessed with states’ rights, as if it were the 1850′s all over again . . . Such characteristics have always described the South. Somehow, they now describe the nation.

    Certainly rings true to me!!!

    Do you see any way that the BETTER qualities of the South — the ones you spend a lot of time describing and defending — and ever be revived and utilized for good?

  • I totally agree. All too many folks are too tired, from working too many jobs, and too fearful, to have much energy to place in “protest.”

    I wish we could go back to those old days of unions, demonstrations and strikes. All of these have been painted as demons.

  • I’d like to echo Bev’s thanks. Your writing really is wonderful.

    As she mentions re “class:” how do we convince the “non-elites” that environmental quality is THEIR issue, not just one for effete hippies? I guess we need more movies re Silkwood and other ordinary folks who fought corporate power.

  • Yup. Just ask Rahm.

  • I was touched by the description of your growth as you went from Orangeburg to Yale. At that time, college really did offer an opportunity for reflection, for determining what your path in life might be, for examining your values.

    Do you think that the transformation of college from that [a period of self-examination and discovery] to the current “what job are you preparing yourself for, and BTW you’re going to be in debt forever” is a factor in kids not having the idealism and energy of the 60′s & 70′s?

  • Gus, I am only a couple of years younger than you. Your tales about racial issues in Orangeburg — and what a rural childhood experience was like — resonated with me.

    I was also around for the environmental energy of the 70s, with a husband and friends who worked at OEO, EPA and the Hill. Really what’s happened to that energy, idealism and commitment?

    I was glad to see that at the end of your book you have suggestions for progress, but seriously, where’s that going to come from?

    As you so deftly articulated, the forces resistant to environmental decency are so well-funded and so well-organized, and have such political power, that it’s hard to get our individual votes to count.

  • And how were her questions/reception?

  • Have you been on Bill Moyers’ show recently? That seems one place that’s not “captured” and could be a good means of broadcasting your revelations.

    Of course, PBS might refuse to broadcast . . .

  • I’m also amazed at the apparent number of “hit shows” featuring torture, “defending the Homeland” etc. I don’t actually watch much “Mainstream tv;” my knowledge comes from the ads for these ridiculous shows during football games, esp. on Fox.

    And then there are the “kill, kill, kill” video games they’re advertising, just in time for Christmas.

    All of this brainwashes the public to accept the whole range of “permanent war” elements.

  • I assume you’re doing a book tour? If so, how have your audiences been?

    I don’t see how anyone can fail to be outraged after reading this book — it’s clear why they want to silence you.

    Perhaps a remark to your audiences to “contact your congress-folks.” We all know that won’t really do any good [I used to be on a congressional staff], but letters/calls/e-mails DO at least get counted and might, over time, make some difference in the Congressional ho hum attitude.

  • I use the exercise equipment at my local community center. The tv is ALWAYS on CNN [despite my pleas to change the channel to ESPN], and it’s “fear, fear, fear” plus beheadings. Really a relaxing and invigorating experience — NOT!

  • Welcome Jim and Tim.

    Tim, I had the same reaction you describe in your introduction: absolute horror, “how did this happen?”, and what can we do.

    As to the “Greed” portion, where are those howling, budget-balancing Republicans [and Blue Dog Dems]? Is all the looting and shoveling of money to the Dennis Montgomerys of the world undiscovered?

    Are there no Congresspersons [or their staff] with sufficient security clearances to inquire into these matters? Are the powers for quashing these inquiries that strong?

  • George, thank you so much for coming by here. Thank you for your original book, which was wonderful, and for this one, which is even better.

    I hope more folks will listen [read] and learn.

    Thanks again.

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