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By Michael Collins
We don’t have a substantial cushion between today's climate and dangerous warming. James E. Hanson
The head of NASA's Goddard Institute for Space Studies, James E. Hansen, announced the results of break through global warming research last week. The earth's temperature is rising at a much quicker pace than previously anticipated according to research by the nation's preeminent climate scientist. We have little time to reverse the trend. (Image)
An example of the dangerous pace of change is emerging on Russia's Eastern Siberian Arctic Shelf. Long-frozen permafrost is beginning to melt due to global warming. This threat was identified years ago due to the potential for highly toxic releases of heat-trapping methane gas. Recent changes are both a surprise and a cause for alarm. There is more methane gas released from the Russian cauldron "than the CH4 emissions estimate for the entire world ocean." Methane is a "far more potent GHG [greenhouse gas] than CO2" with a greater potential to cause "abrupt climate change."
By Dave Lindorff
Student Interrupts US Climate Destoyer, You Can Tell It's an International Forum Because They Applauded Rather Than Yelling U-S-A
By Dave Lindorff
Wanted: Sculptor who works in bronze to construct life-sized group of statues of President Barack Obama, House Speaker John Boehner, House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid and Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, all to be mounted at the high tide line below a high cliff in Maine’s Acadia National Park.
There what’s left of American posterity can watch as the seas rise inexorably over the coming years and decades, first lapping at the feet of the statues, then the knees, then the waists, then the chests and finally cover over the heads of these “leaders” in Washington who have cynically and foolishly squandered the last opportunity to take effective action to combat climate change.
As the Occupy Wall Street movement pushes forward, evolving daily in mission and meaning, its cinematic companion has arrived on the scene. Heist: Who Stole The American Dream? is the latest socially and politically relevant documentary executive produced by Earl Katz, President of Public Interest Pictures. Heist will soon premiere as the fundamental primer on the historical and present-day inequities which gave rise to the Occupy Movement. From its 1930s depiction of Depression Era breadlines to Wisconsin Governor Walker's current assault on Collective Bargaining, Heist tells the story of America in decline due to the excessive greed of corporate executives and politicians bent on destroying the middle class.
Hazardous Hydrofracking in America - by Stephen Lendman
Hydraulic fracking involves using pressurized fluids to fracture rock layers to release oil, gas, coal seam gas, or other substances.
Earthworks says the process provides easier access to deposits and lets oil or gas "travel more easily from the rock pores," where it's trapped, "to the production well."
By Harvey Wasserman
The global upheaval that is the Occupy Movement is hopefully in the process of changing---and saving---the world.
Through the astonishing power of creative non-violence, it has the magic and moxie to defeat the failing forces of corporate greed.
A long-term agenda seems to be emerging: social justice, racial and gender equality, ecological survival, true democracy, an end to war, and so much more. "When the power of love overcomes the love of power," said Jimi Hendrix, "the world will know peace."
Urgent Call to Action:
Go to Zuccotti Park Now!!!
By Charles M. Young
Mayor Bloomberg has announced that Occupy Wall Street must leave Zuccotti Park/Liberty Plaza from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. on Friday, October 14, allegedly so the city can clean it.
Almost verbatim notices have been served on other occupations around the United States and the world. Invariably, they have turned out to be a ploy to clear the space and not let demonstrators back in. Mayor Bloomberg has a long history of lying and police state tactics of crowd control.
By Dave Lindorff
While this statement by Occupy Wall Street is a powerful list of grievances against capitalism, it fails to even once mention the word "war." This is a significant failing, and cannot have been an oversight. The activists in Liberty Park and in cities across the country, if they want to make this a mass movement to confront the corporate domination of American politics and society, must be willing to confront head on the reality that the corporate elite have made the U.S. into the world's greatest war-monger. It is not just "colonialism," an outmoded term, that is the problem. It is a vast web of imperialism, imposed by a war machine that is bigger and costlier than all the rest of the world's armies combined, and it is the single biggest reason that this country is descending into a state of social and economic decay and decline.
By Charles M. Young
1) I had brunch on Sunday in Chinatown with a friend who works in local television news. He complained that the Occupy Wall Street people had sent over video that they said showed demonstrators getting maced. It didn’t show any such thing, my friend insisted. After brunch I walked over to occupied Zuccotti Park (two blocks north of Wall Street) and told somebody at the Media table that they had to be careful about claiming more for their video than it actually showed. Then I went home and looked at the video, and it clearly showed several young women, who presented no physical threat, getting wrapped up by police in a plastic net and pepper sprayed in the face.
MIC at 50 – Charlottesville, VA, September 16-18, 2011
Coleman Smith and Clare Hanrahan of New South Network of War Resisters
Militarism is killing us. It is waging a war on the Earth and the devastation wrought is far beyond what can be presented here. We are not academics; we’re activists and organizers who care deeply about our homeland in the Southern US, the region where we live and work, and the most militarized region in the country. We have limited most of our report to the Southeast US and a special place we refer to as Atomic Appalachia. Like Middle Earth in a Tolkien story, Atomic Appalachia is a little known part of our region squeezed in between the Central and Southern Appalachians. It is a region where the impact of militarism is especially evident.
They Torture Horses (To) Don't They?: Graphic Exposé of How the BLM is “Managing” America’s Wild Horse Herds
(Thanks to activists Laura Leigh and Marilyn Wargo)
By Charles M. Young
By John Grant
It’s a sad reality of our day that denial and bullshit seem the most useful talents to getting elected and to govern in America.
Bullshit is meant in the sense used by Harvard philosopher Harry Frankfurt in his popular book titled On Bullshit. He defines bullshit as language with no basis in truth or fact focused on obtaining power. A liar knows the truth and tries to sell falsehoods; bullshitters simply don’t care what the truth is.
Some of the most popular candidates for the Republican Party (think Rick Perry and Michelle Bachman) are classic bullshitters who completely disdain rational analysis. For them it’s OK to say anything, like Perry and others' denial of evolution and global warming. Reason and responsible history are for the weak.
Come on Irene!
Poor old Michele B
Sounds deranged on the radio, breaks a million rules of logic, so ...
Fox Newsers cry and sing along and blame storms on ...
God yeah God, oh God! now I must say more than ever
Go Toora Loora Toora Loo-Rye-Aye
and they can sing just like they're loon ah tics
Come on Irene
I know what you mean. At this moment you mean anything,
But now I digress, my thoughts I confess verge on kooky
Ah come on Irene.
Dum duh Dum ..
In this sprawling memoir–cum–political exposé, Coleman-Adebayo, a former senior policy analyst at the EPA, describes her ascendance to the top ranks of the federal agency, and the hostility and harassment that compelled her to speak out against the unfair treatment she received.
by Debra Sweet, Director, World Can't Wait
Last Friday, I joined 53 others in getting hand-cuffed by Park Police after we sat in front of the White House for a few minutes in protest of the Keystone oil pipeline proposed to run from Alberta Canada down to Texas refineries. Before Hurricane Irene hit North Carolina a day later, it was hot and still in Washington, and sweaty sitting on the pavement in front of the White House. I realized that most often it’s been cold or rainy when we stood or laid down there in protest against U.S. wars and torture.
Standard would reduce dangerous US oil dependence, save Americans billions at the pump
The El Niño global climate cycle is triggering regular conflicts across the globe, new research suggests.
By Emma Woollacott, TGDaily
Its arrival every three to seven years boosts temperatures and cuts rainfall, doubles the risk of civil wars across 90 affected tropical countries, and could be behind as many as a fifth of worldwide conflicts during the past half-century, says the Columbia University team.
While climate has been linked with many historical conflicts, this is the first study to examine whether the connection exists today.
"The most important thing is that this looks at modern times, and it’s done on a global scale," says Solomon M Hsiang of the university's Earth Institute.
"This study shows a systematic pattern of global climate affecting conflict, and shows it right now.”
The El Niño-Southern Oscillation, or ENSO, is a periodic warming and cooling of the tropical Pacific Ocean, which affects weather patterns across much of Africa, the Middle East, India, southeast Asia, Australia, and the Americas. Half the world’s people live in the affected regions.
During the cool, or La Niña, phase, rain may be relatively plentiful in tropical areas; during the warmer El Niño, land temperatures rise, and rainfall declines in most affected places. On occasion, it brings scorching heat and multi-year droughts.
The scientists tracked ENSO from 1950 to 2004 and correlated it with the onset of civil conflicts that killed more than 25 people in a given year. The data included 175 countries and 234 conflicts, over half of which each caused more than 1,000 battle-related deaths.
And for nations whose weather is controlled by ENSO, they found that during La Niña, the chance of civil war breaking out was about three percent; during El Niño, that doubled to six percent. Countries not affected by the cycle remained at two percent, whatever the stage of the ENSO cycle.
Overall, the team calculates that El Niño may have played a role in 21 percent of civil wars worldwide — and nearly 30 percent in those countries affected by El Niño.
"No one should take this to say that climate is our fate," says Mark Cane of Columbia’s Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory. "Rather, this is compelling evidence that it has a measurable influence on how much people fight overall."
It's pretty clear why. Some examples leap out of the data, says the team: in 1982, for example, a powerful El Niño destroyed crops in impoverished highland Peru; later that year, guerrilla attacks by the Shining Path movement kicked off a 20-year civil war.
Not everybody agrees.
"The study fails to improve on our understanding of the causes of armed conflicts, as it makes no attempt to explain the reported association between ENSO cycles and conflict risk," says Halvard Buhaug of the Peace Research Institute Oslo in Norway.
"Correlation without explanation can only lead to speculation."
"Shrinking government" in American political discourse has, for decades now, meant the following. We enlarge the government's budget through taxation and penalties on working people and through borrowing and printing money. We not only tax the wealthy and corporations less, but we massively subsidize them with public funds. We move away from taxes and fees meant to limit the damage greed can do to the world, and we defund regulation of and law enforcement against the oligarchy. We transfer an ever greater share of the budget to the military. We expand the domestic and international surveillance-police states while merging the two. This, again, we call "shrinking government."