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Gender: Female
Home country: USA
Member since: Thu Dec 1, 2011, 12:59 PM
Number of posts: 7,830

About Me

FDR Populist Progressive who believes the environment trumps all. We\'re sinking the only ship we\'ve got, and govt leaders are ignoring it.

Journal Archives

Green group endorses Hillary Clinton, and feels the Bern

Green group endorses Hillary Clinton, and feels the Bern
By Juliet Eilperin November 9 at 7:37 PM

The League of Conservation Voters Action Fund’s endorsement of Hillary Rodham Clinton Monday has prompted a backlash from many of its members, who argue Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) deserved the nod.

The endorsement, which was first reported by The Washington Post, marked the first time in more than three decades that the group had endorsed a presidential candidate before a single primary vote was cast. The group’s board Chairwoman Carol M. Browner, who served as the Environmental Protection Agency administrator under President Clinton and advised President Obama on climate change during his first term, said Hillary Clinton won the endorsement because she was best prepared to advance environmental priorities in office....

But the move touched off a furor among Sanders supporters, who noted that he had a 95 percent lifetime rating from LCV compared to Clinton’s 82 percent. While the group does not evaluate governors, the third Democratic presidential contender, former Maryland governor Martin O’Malley, received an A-minus rating from LCV’s Maryland affiliate for 2007-2008 and a B-plus for 2009-2011.

Backers of Sanders posted a slew of comments on Facebook and Twitter, suggesting that the League of Conservation Voters’ federal political action committee had made a politically expedient choice.....

Several vowed to withhold future donations to LCV in retaliation for the move and either give the money to other environmental groups, or Sanders himself........

Read in full~

I didn't take to twitter, I just looked in my inbox for the latest email from them, unsubscribed and left feedback on my thoughts on their backing a candidate before the primary and without input from their supporters. I left some links to articles on Hillary's ties to BigOil and fracking and stressed how vital it is now to have someone lead who realizes that in order to stem this sixth mass extinction we're experiencing right now, we need radical change.

There are many incredible environmental organizations out there doing great things. I don't want to waste my money on one that's only in it for political posturing.

GO Bernie!!!

Don't Underestimate Bernie's Brand

Don't Underestimate Bernie's Brand
by Nigel Hollis 8:01 AM ET
The Atlantic

Like many new and different brands, Bernie Sanders has a message that resonates with supporters. But just as big brand managers make the mistake of dismissing new competition, the media has discounted Sanders’s chances of nomination. Indoctrinated by years of “business as usual” both groups assume that history will repeat itself; they assume that the frontrunner has the upper hand; they assume that the parameters of success are fixed and what has worked in the past will work in the future. The real challenge when forecasting future success—for brands or politicians—is to test existing assumptions, not simply to accept them at face value.

Detractors of Sanders’s campaign often write off his early popularity by contending that his supporters are little more than a grumbling and ultimately powerless economic minority. This group, according to critics, may make a lot of noise in the beginning, but it has neither the staying power nor the voter turnout to truly impact an election. But Sanders’s early success is far more indicative of a serious disillusionment with the American Dream and a discredited political mainstream. The cultural and economic context does not merely allow for Sanders’s popularity; rather; it gives grounds to his resonance.

Sanders’s message of economic and social fairness is resonating with Americans in exactly the same way that many successful brands do—by addressing societal tensions. Sanders, for example, tapped into a public that felt trapped after the Great Recession. Similarly, Dove’s Campaign for Real Beauty succeeded by addressing the idealized portrayal of female beauty in popular culture that many women found unobtainable and demeaning. IBM has found success with its promise of making the world a Smarter Planet through technology, and Chipotle is appealing to those who may not agree with the practices of big agriculture.

Audi, Under Armour, and Apple have gained traction by taking their differences and making them meaningful and salient to a wider audience. People find it difficult to agree that a brand is relevant and appealing to them if they are unfamiliar with it, but they will readily admit that it is different. The trick is then to demonstrate how that difference is relevant to more people. This logic equally applies to the presidential race....

Read in full here~

I really don't like couching Bernie's run in capitalistic terms, it just doesn't seem right. But I found this interesting, and hopeful.

GO Bernie!!!

I hope this works out for them. And the drilling doesn't trigger an earthquake...

When I lived in that region, we used to go to Montserrat for hiking every so often, about 10 years after the volcano destroyed half the island. The volcano destroyed the airport, so the only way to go was by boat. Its an incredibly beautiful island, so devastating what happened to it.

The tropical forest portion we used to hike looked like this (these pics don't capture the incredible beauty, but you'll get an idea)~

Once, they were allowing certain cab drivers to take tourists through a portion of Plymouth, the capital. It looked like this, still, 10 years later~

This video shows the destruction to Plymouth~

This video shows Montserrat's comeback~

Given the responses here,

or lack thereof, I'd say you're most likely (& sadly) spot on.

Or maybe this just isn't much of a LW gathering place after all.

Hard to say.

THE FIGHT IS ON! - People & Planet vs Greedy 1% (TPP Team call tomorrow!)

Since Thursday's early morning release of the text, experts agree on one thing: the reason the TPP has been kept under wraps for the last 6 years is because it stinks to high heaven!

In every meaningful way the TPP could have set benchmarks higher than former trade agreements, it fails miserably, especially when it comes to jobs, access to healthcare and lifesaving medications, environmental protection, digital rights, food sovereignty, and democracy.

Think about this for one minute: Our representatives are being told by a handful of corporate interests, to approve a treaty that is required to set up a separate bureaucracy of foreign corporate interests to harmonize our laws so they can do away with Buy American policies and kill country of origin food labeling, so countries like Viet Nam, with its poor labor standards and toxic fish have unhampered market access. And let's not forget the words "global warming" aren't mentioned a single time.

I hate to say global corporate dominance for want of sounding alarmist, but if we're not careful and don't stand up and fight now, those who follow us are going to pay the price for generations to come, because this treaty is open-ended.

There is no expiration date.



Click this link to login to the online meeting room: http://login.meetcheap.com/conference,87610294

Online meeting room opens 15 minutes before the call

DIAL-IN NUMBER AND ACCESS CODE: 605-562-3140 / 951146#

ALTERNATE NUMBER: 559-726-1300 / 951146#


Join the National TPP Team to discuss how TPP would further impact food sovereignty and safety, and jobs,
with John E. Peck, Executive Director, Family Farm Defenders and Oscar Gutierrez, Director Nacional Dignidad Agropecuaria por la soberanía alimentaria de Colombia (National Executive Director of Dignity in Agriculture, working for food sovereignty for Colombia).

Mr. Gutierrez will address the continuing detrimental impacts of the U.S. Colombia Free Trade Agreement on agricultural workers in Colombia. Also with us will be the coalition partners reporting on the current state of Congress when it comes to the unpopular coming vote.

Kathryn Johnson, Policy Impacts Coordinator, American Friends Service Committ, will give her analysis on the recent leaked text of the TPP;

Emilianne Slaydon, TPP Media March, will update us on the TPP Tuesday Twitter Storm;

Adam Weissman, TradeJustice NY Metro, will update us on coming events; Mackenzie McDonald Wilkins, Popular Resistance / Flush the TPP will fill us in on the imminent #FallRising D.C. Days of Action against Toxic Trade, November 14-18, and how we can participate; And

Andrea Miller, Co-Executive Director, People Demanding, will moderate the call.

Please join us,

Harriet Heywood

Co-Coordinator, National TPP Team

P.S.: Please sign and help spread Peter's petition which we will deliver in D.C. during #FallRising:

Please JOIN the FIGHT!!!

(xposted in GD)

Exxon, Keystone, and the Turn Against Fossil Fuels

The New Yorker
Exxon, Keystone, and the Turn Against Fossil Fuels
November 6, 2015

The fossil-fuel industry—which, for two centuries, underwrote our civilization and then became its greatest threat—has started to take serious hits. At noon today, President Obama rejected the Keystone Pipeline, becoming the first world leader to turn down a major project on climate grounds. Eighteen hours earlier, New York’s Attorney General Eric Schneiderman announced that he’d issued subpoenas to Exxon, the richest and most profitable energy company in history, after substantial evidence emerged that it had deceived the world about climate change.

These moves don’t come out of the blue. They result from three things.

The first is a global movement that has multiplied many times in the past six years. Battling Keystone seemed utterly quixotic at first—when activists first launched a civil-disobedience campaign against the project, in the summer of 2011, more than ninety per cent of “energy insiders” in D.C. told a National Journal survey that they believed that President Obama would grant Transcanada a permit for the construction. But the conventional wisdom was upended by a relentless campaign carried on by hundreds of groups and millions of individual people (including 350.org, the international climate-advocacy group I founded). It seemed that the President didn’t give a speech in those years without at least a small group waiting outside the hall to greet him with banners demanding that he reject the pipeline. And the Keystone rallying cry quickly spread to protests against other fossil-fuel projects. One industry executive summed it up nicely this spring, when he told a conference of his peers that they had to figure out how to stop the “Keystone-ization” of all their plans.

The second, related, cause is the relentless spread of a new logic about the planet—that we have five times as much carbon in our reserves as we can safely burn. While President Obama said today that Keystone was not “the express lane to climate disaster,” he also said that “we’re going to have to keep some fossil fuels in the ground rather than burn them.” ....

.......Snipping...don't want to...its great stuff....

In many ways, the developments of the past two days are more important than any pledges and promises for the future, because they show the ways in which political and economic power has already started to shift. If we can accelerate that shift, we have a chance.

It’s impossible, in the hottest year that humans have ever measured, to feel optimistic. But it’s also impossible to miss the real shift in this battle.

Read in full here~

My step was a little bit lighter today. Anyone else?

Even the birds looked happier. And the frogs probably were as well...

I don't have time right now, kk, to really delve into this. But here's a fair summary~

....As with NAFTA, the TPP will benefit U.S. companies relocating jobs to low-wage, high-repression nations, argues economist Mark Weisbrot, co-director of the Center for Economic and Policy Research (CEPR). This would also exert strong downward pressures on the pay of U.S. workers, “Most U.S. workers are likely to lose out from the TPP,” Weisbrot says. “This may come as no surprise after 20 years of NAFTA and an even-longer period of trade policy designed to put lower- and middle-class workers in direct competition with low-paid workers in the developing world.”

Obama has billed the TPP as a “trade agreement” that will create U.S. jobs. The pact, however, actually has little to do with reducing trade restrictions. Tariffs are now a minimal factor for most global trade. Lori Wallach, director of Public Citizen’s Global Trade Watch, points out that only five of the TPP’s twenty-nine chapters are about trade at all. But the remaining provisions cover such immensely important measures as the creation of a kind of corporate supremacy over the democratically established regulations enacted by member nations. If an existing law threats to diminish profits, corporations in the TPP nations would be entitled to bring their complaint to an international dispute panel of anonymous corporate members, who could impose major financial penalties on the “offending” countries. “The Trans-Pacific Partnership,” Wallach concludes, “is a Trojan horse for a host of awful measures that have nothing to do with trade and would never get through Congress in the light of day.”


Its expanding NAFTA to more countries. Like Malaysia. (see Obama Won’t Let Some Mass Graves Stop the TPP http://www.democraticunderground.com/10026962420 )

I imagine labor is even cheaper than Vietnam in Malaysia. Lots of profits to be made!!!

She would have been a extremely beneficial prez, and Bernie is right up there with her.

Luckily he's willing to take on the challenge of running.

If you watch these videos, the indescribable "it" factor for being President of the US is self-evident in Elizabeth Warren~

My tremendous disappointment in Barack Obama turning out to be a corporate dem is matched only by Warren deciding not to run for president.

I can't take too much more of these letdowns, so for me personally, I'm not allowing myself to become too personally invested in Bernie's run. I hope I get to vote for him in my primary, but out of self-preservation, my enthusiasm is low-key.

Elizabeth Warren is trying to right a wrong by Bill Clinton & help SS at the same time.

As you may have heard, there will be no Cost of Living Adjustment for Social Security beneficiaries next year. Despite average annual benefits of just $14,375 and rising medical and housing costs, Social Security payments will remain flat.

CEO pay for the top 350 US Firms, meanwhile, saw their pay increase by 3.9% last year, according to data compiled by the Economic Policy Institute. Why are we stretching thin seniors and people with disabilities while CEOs whose average pay is $16.3 billion—much of it paid through a tax-free “performance pay” loophole—are making more than ever?

Thankfully, Social Security champion Senator Elizabeth Warren has just introduced a bill which will give a 3.9% raise to Social Security beneficiaries in 2016 – around $580 – and pay for it for by eliminating the CEO performance pay tax break.

At a time when more than half of households 55 and older have zero retirement savings, and when two-thirds of retirees depend on Social Security for the majority of their income, Senator Warren’s legislation is critical to providing financial security to Social Security recipients in 2016.


A bit of history on the "tax-free “performance pay” loophole", posted last April~
...The story begins during Bill Clinton's earliest days in the White House. Soon after his election, he worked with Congress to limit corporations' ability to deduct executive compensation from their taxes, as they do for ordinary workers' wages and other expenses of doing business. A limit of $1 million was set for deductions for executive compensation. There was a big exception, though. Compensation that was dependent on the firm's performance was exempt from the threshold.

...As a result, the new limit didn't prevent executives from receiving ever fatter paychecks -- but they got the money in stock and options, rather than in cash. Clinton and Congress had failed to solve the problem.

"My cynical opinion is that they were trying to look like they were doing something," said Steven Balsam, a professor at Temple University.

Some, like Warren, say the provision was worse than useless. In a speech last week, she called on her colleagues in Congress to change the rules, although without discussing how they'd come about.

"This tax incentive has encouraged financial firms to compensate executives with massive bonuses – bonuses that too often reward short-term risk-taking instead of sustained, long-term growth," she said. "We can close that loophole and stop pushing companies to reward short-term thinking."

Lynn Stout, a law professor at Cornell University and an outspoken skeptic of today's corporate governance, says the Clinton-era shift led executives to try to boost stock prices in the near term by laying off employees and spending less on research and development. These measures, according to this line of thinking, made firms more profitable in the short term because their costs were lower, which resulted in high stock prices, but less able to generate value in the long term for investors and the economy....


Let's hope this pragmatic bill, with common decency to boot, passes into law!! I hope even corporate Dems can see the massive good it would do for US.

Introducing 'Keep It in the Ground' Bill, Sanders Goes Big on Climate

Introducing 'Keep It in the Ground' Bill, Sanders Goes Big on Climate
Published on Wednesday, November 04, 2015
Common Dreams

Proposed legislation by presidential candidate and Senate colleagues—which would keep majority of fossil fuels on public lands and offshore areas from being exploited—described as 'historic'

by Sarah Lazare, staff writer

.....The Keep It in the Ground Act was introduced by Sens. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.), Jeff Merkley (D-Ore.), and Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.).

The bill was cosponsored by Sens. Ben Cardin (D-Md.), Barbara Boxer (D-Calif.), Kirsten Gillibrand (D-N.Y.), and Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.).

Specifically, the proposed legislation would block corporations from pursuing new and non-producing leases for coal, oil, gas, shale, and tar sands extraction on federal land. In addition, it would ban offshore drilling in the Arctic and Atlantic Oceans and halt new and non-producing leases in the Pacific and Gulf of Mexico.

"We are taking on the Koch brothers and some of the most powerful political forces in the world who are more concerned with short-term profits than the future of the planet," said Sanders in a statement accompanying the bill. "I’ve got four kids, and I’ve got seven beautiful grandchildren. We have a moral responsibility to leave our kids a planet that is healthy and inhabitable."

The introduction of the bill follows an appeal issued in September by over 400 climate organizations and environmental leaders—including Asian Pacific Environmental Network and Indigenous People's Power Project—calling on Obama to halt new leasing on public lands and oceans, and insisting this is the single greatest thing he could do as president to curb the climate crisis.

"Over the past decade, the burning of fossil fuels from federal leasing has resulted in nearly a quarter of all U.S. energy-related emissions and nearly 4 percent of global emissions," the letter stated.

In a study published in the journal Nature earlier this year, scientists concluded that, in order to stave off climate disaster, the vast majority of fossil fuel deposits around the world—including 92 percent of U.S. coal, all Arctic oil and gas, and a majority of Canadian tar sands—must stay "in the ground."

Bill Snape, senior counsel to the Center for Biological Diversity, told Common Dreams that—because of this stark warning—Wednesday's legislation is "historic."

"Obviously Obama's Clean Power Plan is not enough, and not even close if it is by itself," Snape emphasized. "All of the technical standards, all of the state cooperation, it matters for nothing if we do not keep the vast majority of fossil fuels in the ground."


*This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 3.0 License

(Bold for emphasis is my own)

(xposted in environment & energy forum)
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