Posts Tagged ‘crimes against the future’
* Reality is a hoax: If you’re 27 or younger, you’ve never experienced a colder-than-average month. That’s right; there hasn’t been a colder-than-average month in twenty-seven years.
* “We Would Never Propose A Carbon Tax,” Says White House Spokesman. I’m so glad the pro-science, reality-based candidate won!
* The new normal: Missouri police foil mass murder plot at ‘Twilight’ screening, Walmart.
* And the frame giveth, and the frame taketh away: after the insanity of the last year, Americans describe themselves as pro-choice again.
9) Americans have decided they want catastrophe. There is NO significant force in US society pushing against having a disaster.
10) The US is trying to become a petro-state through fracking. It won’t help most Americans, and it will do massive environmental damage. It will also accelerate global warming. Yes, Obama is better on global warming than Republicans, but he’s not enough better to matter, he is, in fact, making it worse. Your grandchildren will ritually curse your very names.
Researchers from the University of New South Wales in Australia and Purdue University in the US said global warming will not stop after 2100, the point where most previous projections have ended.
In fact temperatures may rise by up to 12C (21.6F) within just three centuries making many countries into deserts.
…I’d call using a false identity to get inside a diabolical organization “journalism.” It might not be respectable and won’t get you invited to fun corporate-sponsored events. But Gleick has thrown the curtain back. And of course, he’s at fault here. Even if he broke the law, is that the real issue here? What is worse, using a false identity or advocating for policies that will destroy the entire nation of Tonga? Using a false identity or lobbying the U.S. government to halt changes in mileage standards for cars so that we don’t become a bunch of hippie Europeans or something and continue to change the climate with ever-greater rapidity? I think I know which side contains the moral monsters here. And it ain’t Peter Gleick.
Erik Loomis, in defense of Peter Gleick.
* There’s really only one label for the pathetic exercise we’ve just witnessed in South Africa: deceit. The whole climate-change negotiation process and the larger political discourse surrounding this horrible problem is a drawn-out and elaborate exercise in lying – to each other, to ourselves, and especially to our children. And the lies are starting to corrupt our civilization from inside out.
* Aaron Bady: The case for making a storm in the ports. I feel certain 90% of the impetus for this piece was the desire to use that pun.
* Oh, UVM. You know better.
* Plutocracy watch: More than 80 percent of giving to Super PACs so far has come from just 58 donors, according to the Center for Responsive Politics analysis of the latest data, which covers the first half of 2011. The Republican groups have raised $17.6 million and the Democratic groups $7.6 million. Those numbers will balloon, with American Crossroads, the main Republican Super PAC, aiming to raise $240 million.)
The exceptions are two public employee labor unions, whose massive donations match those of some of the largest moguls. The rest are individuals with vast fortunes at their disposal.
* Ladies and gentlemen, Andy Serkis: Official plot synopsis for The Hobbit. Rise of the Planet of the Apes director shares his sequel plans.
* Government shutdown, again? Really? Well, I guess it’s been a few weeks…
* Chris Newfield on the university in crisis.
The first is that this model has been shifting public university revenues to a specific kind of private source, for three decades. Voters are often told that the shift means that wealthy donors and research sponsors have picked up a big part of the educational bill, but this is simply not true. The AFM means shifting educational costs from the overall population to students and their families. The model also shifts costs from old to young, and in California from a 70 per cent white voting public to a 70 per cent student-of-colour secondary-school population. It destroys the mutualization principle of social development.
The second effect of the American funding model is that it has damaged American educational attainment. The USA has had a comparative educational advantage over the rest of the wealthy world for about 150 years – first at the high-school level and then in college degrees. Now, for the first time in US history, younger people are less educated than their baby-boomer parents. If you are wondering whether privatization caused this destruction, the answer is yes it did. The private investment process gives the least money to the colleges with the lowest graduation rates, which receive a disproportionately high percentage of low-income and first-generation students. The decades-old failure of the bottom three-quarters of the country’s students (measured by socio-economic status) to improve their educational outcomes has undermined overall advances in attainment. In about twenty years, the funding model has destroyed the USA’s educational advantage (it is now twelfth in BA attainment rates and falling).
The third effect of privatization is that it is wrecking the financial solvency of high-quality public universities. The funding model doesn’t produce stability because the net private revenues never make up for cuts to the public funding lost to cuts. This structural shortfall will result from the British government’s replacement of most of the teaching grant with a scheme of high fees and loans. It has been happening for a long time in California, and based on that state’s experience even a tripling of fees won’t make up for the teaching grant.
* Michael Tomasky crunches the numbers to prove bipartisanship truly is bunk.
* Exxon Makes Billion-Dollar Bet Climate Change is Real, Here Now and Going to Get Worse But Keeps Funding Deniers. Bring on the carbon trials.
* For my Texas readers: please be advised that statistically, you have a better chance of being executed by Rick Perry than dying in an airplane crash. Of course, if Perry gets elected president he’ll do his deregulating best to even those odds.
* Muslim American terrorist plots have killed since 9/11 — since the 3,000 killed on 9/11 — have killed 33 individuals in the United States since that time. Over that same period of time, there have been more than 150,000 murders in the United States, or 14 or 15,000 murders every year. Muslim American terrorism, then, has been a very small, very low percentage of the overall violence in the United States.
* And I’ve seen more than a couple links to this diary on the legacy of Martin Luther King on Daily Kos this weekend.
He ended the terror of living as a black person, especially in the south.
I’m guessing that most of you, especially those having come fresh from seeing “The Help,” may not understand what this was all about. But living in the south (and in parts of the mid west and in many ghettos of the north) was living under terrorism.
It wasn’t that black people had to use a separate drinking fountain or couldn’t sit at lunch counters, or had to sit in the back of the bus.
You really must disabuse yourself of this idea. Lunch counters and buses were crucial symbolic planes of struggle that the civil rights movement decided to use to dramatize the issue, but the main suffering in the south did not come from our inability to drink from the same fountain, ride in the front of the bus or eat lunch at Woolworth’s.
It was that white people, mostly white men, occasionally went berserk, and grabbed random black people, usually men, and lynched them. You all know about lynching. But you may forget or not know that white people also randomly beat black people, and the black people could not fight back, for fear of even worse punishment.
This constant low level dread of atavistic violence is what kept the system running. It made life miserable, stressful and terrifying for black people.
White people also occasionally tried black people, especially black men, for crimes for which they could not conceivably be guilty. With the willing participation of white women, they often accused black men of “assault,” which could be anything from rape to not taking off one’s hat, to “reckless eyeballing”…
* My father sends along this 3-dimensional tour of Detroit’s crumbling Michigan Station.
* And speaking of monsters: Climate scientists still can’t get their calls returned in Washington. History will not be kind.
When the Deepwater Horizon rig exploded, BP was presented with a stark choice: Let the oil float to the surface, reach the shore, and allow the world to see the full scope of the damage; or hit as much of the oil as possible with toxic substances called dispersants to break it up into trillions of tiny droplets, keeping some of it from reaching the surface and making landfall—but also potentially killing more sea life than the oil might have destroyed by itself. The company chose the latter.
Mother Jones has a huge report this month focusing on both the long-term effects of the BP spill (including the overuse of dispersant primarily for PR reasons) as well as the company’s attempts to cover these unhappy facts up.
The oil spill is one month old today. Heavy oil hits Louisiana shore, enters sea current. Scientists scramble to help Cuba. Coast Guard blocks journalists from filming oil on the shoreline, citing “BP’s rules.” Oceanographers attack Obama administration response. BP admits they underestimated the amount of oil leaking as more washes on shore. How big? An Exxon Valdez every three days. BP withholding information. BP skipped critical testing hours before explosion. BP told to stop using toxic dispersant. Fmr. EPA Investigator Scott West: US Has Told BP “It Can Do Whatever It Wants and Won’t Be Held Accountable.” No one could have predicted. The Gulf of Mexico is a crime scene. And then Kevin Costner fixed everything.