2010-10-04 08:50:08US politics
Ned

ned.flounders@yahoo...
71.181.75.53
It seems like we ought to have a thread for US politics, what with the election coming up and all.  But I find the whole subject so phenomenally depressing that I can't bear to start a thread on this subject.
2010-10-04 16:04:53Depressing is an understatement
Robert Way

robert_way19@hotmail...
142.162.21.244
It really is quite depressing. All political parties aside I find it amazing how little reasoning is being done in American politics. It used to be that there were two parties working somewhat together and uniting a core of the country. Now the left and right is so polarized that it makes everything frustrating. I watch the daily show religiously (and colbert too) and some of the things you learn just make you ask, how can someone in their right mind have voted for this person?

The biggest problem I see is that there is no middle ground arbiter. The media is supposed to be filtering what is true and what isn't but instead they're just trying to stir up debate and entertainment. I would think its the responsibility of those in the media in particular to be like hey wait a second... what you just said was clearly a lie?
2010-10-04 17:21:29
nealjking

nealjking@gmail...
84.151.46.226

- The role of the media has clearly been re-focused to just making money. Fox News is the exemplar.

- I was quite disappointed that Obama didn't try to do climate-change stuff early enough in his first term: Instead, he went after health-care first. Maybe he figured that he'd get enough done there that he would have momentum to carry through the rest of his agenda. A few key deaths on the senatorial side (specifically Ted Kennedy) made his slim majority inoperable, and the Republicans have dug their heels in against any progress of any kind. I am hoping that the GOP don't take the Senate, at least; the situation for the House of Reps looks very grim. If elections go as currently projected, the best that can happen for a couple of years is a holding action.

- Or maybe there will be some environmental disaster that blows apart the political stall: Remember that what popped GWB's balloon was Katrina, essentially an accident of nature. Yes, it exposed the incapability of the Administration; but it was an accident in the sense that if it had hit ground 50 miles or so away, it wouldn't have smashed New Orleans, and the Bushies would still be dreaming of competence.

- It's quite a change to think that perhaps the best hope for climate-change progress in the US is the fact that China seems to be spending real money on climate-change technology (or so I see in The Economist). Maybe the US will wake up and smell the coffee, at some point.

2010-10-04 22:17:06
Ned

ned.flounders@yahoo...
129.170.23.6

There's a lengthy article in the New Yorker examining how and why climate change legislation failed in the Senate:

As the World Burns (by Ryan Lizza)

 

2010-10-04 22:41:26
doug_bostrom

dbostrom@clearwire...
184.77.83.151

As Neal says, Katrina was a remarkable punctuation point; the fact that it took an act of nature to expose vacuous swagger is perhaps a uniquely American phenomenon? Oops, my  exceptionalism is showing again...

This election is another fearsome inflection point, a test of whether a maelstrom of inchoate resentments can be harnessed and ridden to dominance by a gang of money-men.

Apathy and unrealistic dreams of instant gratification on the part of Democrats are the double edges of the weapon that will bring victory to the GOP.

2010-10-05 00:41:07Comment
Robert Way

robert_way19@hotmail...
134.153.163.105
I think its incompetence of the dems that will bring the GOP what they like. The DEMs were too fractured whereas the GOP tries to remain solid. The dems should of stayed together and working on the major issues and then just showed that the GOP was unwilling to work on anything. The problem is too many DEMs started voting against their own party giving validity (or the sense of it) to the GOPs actions.

The GOP did not let the DEMs get any victories... Even the 9/11 first responders act and repealing don't ask, don't tell, failed. As well as extending Jobless benefits. These shouldn't have failed but the DEMs didn't have the backbone to fight for these issues. If they came into this election with those three pieces of legislation passed as successes, things would be different.

Another issue, the health care debate, too much in-fighting and too many amendments. Should have be turned into a single payer system to reduce costs. Take health care away from the insurance companies and give the power back to the government in one way or another. Canada, France, England, Norway and Sweden all have variations of an integrated single payer system and their health care costs are much lower.

They should have fought the fight for the single payer system, the GOP would have called it too expensive and then the DEMs could have said, okay? Prove it? All these other countries have cheaper health care because of this system...
2010-10-05 01:05:02
nealjking

nealjking@gmail...
84.151.46.226

The problem is that the majority possessed by the Democrats was thin: Not just in numbers, but also in solidity. There were basically centerish states that the Democrats carried because of Obama's appeal. These guys were not willing to take a bullet for the party, because they knew they would have a hard time justifying it to the voters of their district/state.

Of course, theses guys are mostly gonna get kicked out anyway. So their lack of courage didn't buy them anything either.

If they had had any cojones, they would have decided, "I'm probably out in the next election no matter what I do. Might as well go out with a bang, and vote for what will help the country."

But I think politicians don't tend to think along such lines.

2010-10-05 02:35:15
doug_bostrom

dbostrom@clearwire...
184.77.83.151

Robert, to your remarks I'll reply or add that if blame is to be found, a lot of it may be located where bad faith resides. This country works on good faith; the Constitution can't function unless it's respected at a basic level. On a more prosaic plain the extra-Constitutional "gentleman's" agreements in the Senate permitting the filibuster only worked if indeed the opponents on opposite sides of the aisle behaved as gentlemen.

As they were prepared to abandon faith with their country even as they entirely ceased to behave as gentlemen, the GOP  put the Democrats in a position of having  to consistently produce lock-step party solidarity in order to pass any legislation. Such monolithic party behavior is an unattractive thing in itself, permitting of no dissent, allowing no expression of intra-party discussion with teeth. Were it not for the abuse of the filibuster, various Democrats might have been able to act with a little more independence on individual votes, meaning more bills could be agreed on for up/down votes, etc. The GOP relied on the filibuster to make useful compromise impossible.

Not to excuse the Dems; I've got problems with their courage as well as what I believe is their underestimation of citizens' ability to grapple with truth if it's explained properly. But at the end of the day, the GOP have been exposed as quite willing to torch our government if doing so fits their narrow interest. The filibuster is just another log on the pyre. 

2010-10-05 02:54:56depressing
dana1981
Dana Nuccitelli
dana1981@yahoo...
38.223.231.249

Depressing is definitely the best way to describe American politics these days.  It was so encouraging in '08 with Obama elected and Dems getting a majority in the House and supermajority in the Senate.  But things went downhill so quickly.  Putting health care ahead of climate was a mistake.  Letting Baucus dictate the health care bill was a mistake.  I wish Obama had taken control and said "here's what the health care bill needs to look like", but he let Congress handle it, and they took way too long.

And the Republicans did what they do best.  They lied and misinformed the public, feeding off their fears.  They remained a solid unit in opposing absolutely everything the Democrats tried to get done.  This was particularly effective with their filibuster abuse after Ted Kennedy's death and Scott Brown's election (and Martha Coakley completely blew that election which she should have won easily).  Democrats did what they do best too - they were completely ineffectual.  They should have hammered Republicans as obstructionists.

And now despite offering no solutions over the past 2 years (to the problems which they mostly caused), despite blocking progress for their own political benefit, the American public is going to reward the GOP with gains in Congress and quite possibly a House majority.  It just makes me embarassed to be American that we can be so stupid as a whole.  The analogy that Republicans drove the country into a ditch is quite appropriate.  They then obstructed all Dem efforts to fix our problems.  And because Dems didn't take our country from a massive recession to prosperity in the span of less than 2 years while the GOP blocked their every effort, we're going to elect more Republicans?

I agree with Robert - the media is largely to blame.  They've become stenographers, with every story "he-said, she-said" (or just he said) without any effort to verify if what the parties are saying is actually correct.  The media is the enabler allowing Republicans to misinform the public.  It's sickening.

2010-10-05 03:09:11
nealjking

nealjking@gmail...
84.151.46.226

As Paul Krugman pointed out, for the last few years some of us have been thinking that "Fox News works for the Republicans."

Such cynicism! How wrong we were!

In fact, a look at the panel of FN commentaters who are also likely presidential candidates, and Rupert Murdoch's millions in donations to the GOP, lead instead to the conclusion: "The Republicans work for Fox News."

Now, doesn't that make you feel better?

It's good to know that the media cannot be corrupted by the GOP - because the GOP has already been corrupted by the media.

 

P.S. Has this point already been made on The Colbert Report, or will it show up there in a week or two?

2010-10-21 18:46:51Grim news - but not surprising
nealjking

nealjking@gmail...
91.33.123.185
http://www.nytimes.com/2010/10/21/us/politics/21climate.html?_r=1&th&emc=th
2010-10-22 02:12:45
doug_bostrom

dbostrom@clearwire...
184.77.83.151
Watching this election cycle unfold, I'm pretty sure at this point that SCOTUS completely screwed us w/their recent gift of "free speech" to the  dispersed sociopathic dissociative personality disorders known as corporations. It's a horrific experiment conducted in a leaky test tube.
2010-10-22 02:59:54
Ned

ned.flounders@yahoo...
129.170.23.6

Thanks for spoiling my lunch hour, nealjking.  I should have known not to read that...


2010-10-22 14:27:27
James Wight

jameswight@southernphone.com...
220.238.207.27
I don't really understand the US electoral system. What kind of power are the Tea Party likely to have? Are they part of the Republican Party or are they separate? They sound utterly mad.
2010-10-22 14:45:16
doug_bostrom

dbostrom@clearwire...
184.77.83.151

Frankenstein's Monster is nice way of thinking of the Tea Party. A misshapen assemblage of parts crudely stitched together then electrified with inchoate anger and xenophobia. The giggling megalomaniac in this case is the GOP, which imagined this agglomerated force of nature could be controlled. We've already seen a number of mainstream GOP careers ripped apart as the creature has gone out of control, it having been unleashed under supposedly controlled circumstances in town hall meetings over the past year only to promptly break its chains and barge off on a spree of mindless destruction. The industrialists funding the GOP laboratory don't care, yet.

Seriously, Tea Baggers won't have enough power to create, but they'll have enough to  paralyze or even destroy. 

2010-10-22 14:59:55
doug_bostrom

dbostrom@clearwire...
184.77.83.151

Come to think of it, perhaps the Tea Party will play the role of the Lib Dems in the UK, a relatively small catalyst enabling the unleashing of vast pent-up ideological forces. Electoral reform was so important to the Lib Dems they were prepared to apply a match to the torch the Tories planned using on UK civil society. Oops, LD were suckers and don't even have the guts to admit it.  "Deficit" my ass, this is just Thatcherism having the "pause" button released.

Not quite the same in the U.S. case, I suppose. The Tea Party does not seem prepared to cooperate with anybody, even themselves in the sense of knowing why they want to be elected, as opposed to the Liberal Democrats. All the same, they can take away the Democratic majority in the House and they will in the end frequently caucus with the GOP because TP members and "leaders" are ignorant and therefore maximally gullible. 

2010-10-22 17:50:17
doug_bostrom

dbostrom@clearwire...
184.77.83.151

Beyond my ravings, people looking for analysis of the Tea Party might find this to be worth reading:

http://home.cc.umanitoba.ca/~altemey/drbob/Comment%20on%20the%20Tea%20Party.pdf

By Bob Altmeyer:

http://home.cc.umanitoba.ca/~altemey/

2010-10-23 11:33:26Abolishing government departments
James Wight

jameswight@southernphone.com...
220.238.207.27
Melbourne newspaper The Age recently reported that the Tea Party want to abolish all but four government departments! I shudder to think what they would do to government funding of science... Is there any chance of policies like this being implemented?
2010-10-23 15:28:56
doug_bostrom

dbostrom@clearwire...
184.77.83.151

Who really knows, James? For my part, I laughed when Reagan was nominated, failed to learn when he was elected, laughed even harder when George Bush was nominated and then began to harbor serious doubts. After all, Bush appears to have randomly killed at least 100,000 people by following his imagination, in the process made Tony Blair a co-conspirator in what by any measure is a crime of epic scale.  Is anything out of the question, after that? A wry grin is the best I can manage now.

My mother said "We will abide" when Reagan was elected, but apparently she did not guess we were facing seemingly numberless episodic bouts of stupidity, as though our intelligence waxes and wanes like the tide. Even worse, the excursions are becoming deeper and more frequent, more resemble psychosis than plain lack of intelligence.

2010-10-23 22:10:17
nealjking

nealjking@gmail...
84.151.50.86

James Wight:

There are not enough TPers to take over the government by themselves, so they will need to cooperation from the Republicans to do anything massive.

I think even most conservative Republicans would hesitate before pulling the trigger. There's a big difference between screaming for blocking "big government" when you're outside than when it's your own "big government".

That said, it's possible that climate research could come under a lot of scrutiny and face funding reductions. We probably need to raise its profile as a national security issue (as the CIA has mentioned previously).

2010-10-24 00:20:24
Paul D

chillcast@googlemail...
82.18.130.183

Ha, you think US politics is nuts??

Everything is being cut here in the UK.

Science by less than 10% and that is a small cut compared to other areas of public spending.
The only good thing is that there is still support for renewable energy, although that is some what patchy.

There is a smart grid test project being set up that will try out new technologies and to see how the grid will handle the change:

http://www.newenergyfocus.com/do/ecco/view_item?listid=1&listcatid=32&listitemid=4490§ion=Solar

 

2010-10-24 01:24:21
nealjking

nealjking@gmail...
84.151.50.86

The UK seems to have been taken over by cut-onomics, completely ignoring Keynes.

This will not happen in the US, because as soon as someone tries to cut something major, the people benefit from that will scream bloody murder.

2010-10-25 06:10:57Tea Party
dana1981
Dana Nuccitelli
dana1981@yahoo...
71.137.148.215

The Tea Party seems to basically be pawns of Fox News.  They think what Glenn beck tells them to think.  There was a fascinating example where Glenn Beck told his viewers the US Chamber of Commerce is "fighting for small businesses" and "They are us".  There is of course no truth to these claims - the Chamber is comprised of big businesses.  Many companies left the Chamber in recent months because of its global warming denial and attempts to kill climate legislation in the USA.

But because Beck told them to, so many of his Tea Party viewers went to donate to the Chamber that they crashed its website.  And of course most Tea Partiers think global warming is a scam, Obama is a socialist, Obama wasn't born in the USA, Obama is a Muslim, we need to dismantle every government agency and program, etc. - whatever Beck and other Fox News personalities tell them.

The good news is that a large number of Tea Party candidates are going to lose.  The bad news is that a number will be elected.  And enough Tea Party and other Republican candidates will be elected to give Republicans the majority in the House of Representatives, which will basically bring our already ineffective government to a halt.  They may very well begin a climate science inquisition.

It will be a case of "be careful what you wish for".  Americans have this irrational fear of government programs until they realize that they benefit from those programs.  Fox News tells them 'government is bad', so they believe it, until the government programs are killed and people feel the consequences.

It will be interesting to see what happens to the Republican Party too, because they have an internal rift.  The Tea Party is much more like the Libertarian Party than the Republicans.  Republicans want Tea Party votes, but they don't really want the Tea Party agenda.  Most likely although they'll get a few candidates nominated, the Tea Party won't get the results they want.  So they question becomes whether the Republican Party will move even further to the right, alienating moderates, or whether they'll remain somewhat sane, alienating crazy Tea Partiers.  I think they'll have serious problems in 2012.

2010-10-25 11:08:52In preparation for the coming storm
John Cook

john@skepticalscience...
124.186.160.198
I think one contribution SkS can make if climategate explodes again after Nov elections is to provide lots of ready resources debunking all the various climategate arguments. James is currently working on some resources - I'd like to adapt these into rebuttals that go into the iPhone app and Firefox Add-on. The Firefox Add-on is especially useful - as blog posts and online discussions turn to climategate, hopefully we'll have lots of people surfing around using the plugin to post rebuttals and links to our climategate rebuttals.
2010-10-25 11:43:57good quote for climategate
Robert Way

robert_way19@hotmail...
142.162.11.6
Here's a quote from Gavin Schmidt good for the climategate stuff

"More interesting is what is not contained in the emails. There is no evidence of any worldwide conspiracy, no mention of George Soros nefariously funding climate research, no grand plan to ‘get rid of the MWP’, no admission that global warming is a hoax, no evidence of the falsifying of data, and no ‘marching orders’ from our socialist/communist/vegetarian overlords. The truly paranoid will put this down to the hackers also being in on the plot though."
2010-10-25 11:49:10
nealjking

nealjking@gmail...
84.151.35.28

John,

I absolutely agree that there will be a hailstorm of climategate crap after the November elections, or at latest in the new congressional term.

Maybe somebody should think about / imagine the kinds of things that could come up, and the kind of responses that will be needed: Specifically, can SkS provide material and TOOLS for generating a response, to people who may be OUTSIDE the SkS community? 

That would mean that we wouldn't have to do everything ourselves, but facilitate other being able to join the fray.

For example, if Cuccinelli is still pursuing Mann in a legal suit, what could we provide that would facilitate people shining some light on that?

(This is kind of an open-ended question.)

2010-10-25 12:51:21Girding our loins for Climategate II
John Cook

john@skepticalscience...
124.186.160.198

Thinking just from a grassroots point of view, I think the Firefox add-on could play a large part in the following:

  1. Alert us to new blog posts rehashing climategate arguments
  2. Send lots of Firefox Add-on users to these threads where they can use the Add-on for both content (so they can post the facts in a comment) and links to the relevant rebuttal pages
  3. Hopefully if we have enough users on the case, it means we can get comments posted early in the discussion threads which can have a significant effect on a blog post's impact
  4. More links to SkS rebuttal webpages means those pages are more likely to come up when someone googles a climategate topic
But maybe there needs to be more of an organised system for dealing with this - a type of 'rapid response system' that is more open than the Authors Forum so any user can access it. I have toyed with the rapid response system before but not made much headway with it - perhaps I'll use Climategate II as impetus to get it going.
2010-11-04 03:10:37mixed results
dana1981
Dana Nuccitelli
dana1981@yahoo...
38.223.231.252

The election results were mixed.  The House of Reps was an utter disaster, with Republicans gaining a significant majority in a 65-seat swing, even larger than most projected.  The Senate on the other hand was better for Dems than projected.  There are 3 seats still undecided, but it looks like Dems will probably win 2 of them (Colorado and Washington), and Alaska is down to Murkowski (moderate Republican) vs. Miller (Tea Party psychopath).  At the end of it all, Dems may hold 53 seats when most were projecting just 51.

Tea Party candidates lost in Nevada, Colorado (probably), Delaware, and hopefully Alaska.  The Tea Party nomination of Sharron Angle in Nevada saved Harry Reid's butt - any other candidate would have defeated him.  It appears that the Tea Party helped Republicans in the House, but hurt them in the Senate.

Perhaps most importantly, California resoundingly rejected Prop 23, which would have killed our state climate bill.  In fact, it was defeated by the largest margin of any Proposition on the ballot this year, 61.3% to 38.7%.  A major victory for climate hawks.  We also elected Democrats to the Senate and governorship by double-digit margins.  An embarrassing day to be an American, but a proud day to be a Californian.

2010-11-04 08:22:03
nealjking

nealjking@gmail...
84.151.39.22

The other point about California:

- A pretty good environmentalist, Barbara Boxer, was re-elected to the Senate over the million$ spent by ex-HP CEO Carly Fiorina, who refers to concern about AGW as "worrying about the weather".

- Someone who is sensible (if occasionally wacky in his youth), Jerry Brown, was elected governor over the 160 Million$ (personal bank account) spent by the ex-CEO of Ebay.

2010-11-04 22:24:19Shudder
nealjking

nealjking@gmail...
84.151.31.54
http://www.care2.com/causes/global-warming/blog/top-5-quotes-from-new-climate-deniers/#comment-1281985
2010-11-05 03:38:40indeed
dana1981
Dana Nuccitelli
dana1981@yahoo...
38.223.231.252

Yes, California rocks.  We also passed a proposition to change voting requirements on the annual state budget from 2/3rds to a simple majority.  Hopefully this will help with some of our economic woes, so deniers can stop claiming our economy is in the crapper because of our environmental policies.  I hate that argument.  It's like saying people in Japan live longer because they eat a lot of rice.  The two statements are true but are not causally related.

Those were some ugly climate quotes.  I think my IQ just dropped reading them.

2010-11-05 23:06:30
MarkR
Mark Richardson
m.t.richardson2@gmail...
192.171.166.144

The UK politics of cuts are quite scary: but we do need to save a lot of money somehow. Science cuts fo 10% over 4 years were the best we could hope for I think...

 

Annoyingly they're keeping a 'Feed in Tariff' which pays ridiculous money to domestic solar roofs. The subsidy is about 10 times what offshore wind needs, or about 20 times what nuclear or onshore wind does. It's absolutely ridiculous, but it's currently a vote winner so they're keeping it. We'll end up paying billions for an embarrassing amount of renewable energy and we'll get a backlash in a few years: "see, the daily mail told you renewable power was worthless" :/ 

2010-11-12 19:26:06from Science Magazine: Ominous aftermath of the US elections
nealjking

nealjking@gmail...
84.151.28.248

The full page is here:

http://www.sciencemag.org/content/vol330/issue6006/news-summaries.dtl

 

U.S. Elections:

Researchers Anxious and on the Defensive After Republican Gains

Jeffrey Mervis

Many researchers fear the worst after a Republican resurgence at the polls produced a 25-plus-seat majority in the U.S. House of Representatives and loosened the Democrats' grip on the Senate. The 2 November vote ended a 4-year streak of district, state, and national successes by Democrats that paved the way for unprecedented increases in federal research funding. The 112th Congress that will convene in January could be headed down another path. Budget hawks are preparing to reduce overall federal spending, newly elected members are questioning the need to take action against rising levels of greenhouse gases, and advocates for smaller government are eying pieces of the Department of Education, the Department of Energy, and even the National Science Foundation. Still, science lobbyists point to some bright spots amid those dark clouds.

Full Text »   PDF »  


U.S. Elections:

Election Means Change in Climate for Efforts to Curb Emissions

Eli Kintisch

With "No on cap-and-tax" among their key talking points, Republicans who triumphed in the U.S. Congress and in dozens of state capitols have vowed to block President Barack Obama's plan to limit greenhouse gas emissions and reject state laws with a similar goal. And many Democrats are likely to join them. Although a California state referendum that would have effectively repealed a statewide cap-and-trade law was defeated, the Obama Administration is already bowing to the inevitable.

Full Text »   PDF »  


Ralph Hall Bids to Lead Science Panel

Jeffrey Mervis

In an election that saw Republicans gain control of the U.S. House of Representatives, it's perhaps fitting that the presumptive new chair of the House science committee, Representative Ralph Hall (R–TX), is a former Democrat. But the committee's traditional bipartisan culture could take a hit if Hall's first public comment on how he might run the panel is any guide. Hall issued a statement the day after the election pledging "strong oversight over the [Obama] administration in key areas including climate change, scientific integrity, energy research and development, cybersecurity, and science education."

Full Text »   PDF »  


U.S. Elections:

Retiring Legislators Warn of Pitfalls Facing Science in New Congress

Two days after last week's midterm election, Science talked with four veteran legislators who have been staunch defenders of science and science education. Three are retiring next month: representatives Brian Baird (D–WA) and Bob Inglis (R–SC) of the House science committee and appropriations subcommittee chair Alan Mollohan (D–WV). A fourth, Representative Sherwood Boehlert (R–NY), a former chair of the House science committee, left in 2007. Science offers excerpts from that discussion with Deputy News Editor Jeffrey Mervis; the full-text transcript and audio podcast are available online.

Full Text »   PDF »  



 

2011-01-25 23:00:48Carol Browner, chief of the President's climate-change initiative, leaving
nealjking

nealjking@gmail...
91.33.99.193

http://www.nytimes.com/2011/01/25/us/politics/25browner.html?nl=todaysheadlines&emc=tha23

 

2011-01-26 13:08:01Newt Gingrich: EPA Should Be Eliminated
John Hartz
John Hartz
john.hartz@hotmail...
98.122.68.19

 

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/01/25/newt-gingrich-epa-should-_n_813873.html?ir=Green

2011-01-26 20:15:36gonna be some hard times in DC
citizenschallenge
Peter Miesler
citizenschallenge7@gmail...
96.14.46.246

nealjking- "I was quite disappointed that Obama didn't try to do climate-change stuff early enough in his first term"

~ ~ ~

Heck he didn't mention it once in his State of the Union speech this evening

So now the EPA should be eliminated - they can't even image it having a valuable, heck necessary function.

And they want to do away with IPCC funding too - when are they going to start shooting down satellites?

 

2011-01-26 20:58:46
nealjking

nealjking@gmail...
91.33.98.91
I think there was a line about carbon-free power; embracing "clean coal", whatever the heck that is.
2011-01-27 00:15:24Greens play public health card - Politico
John Hartz
John Hartz
john.hartz@hotmail...
98.122.68.19

Virtually every major Clean Air Act program since the law’s inception in 1970 has met fierce resistance from industry and opponents on Capitol Hill, but clean air champions fear the polarized climate debate has made public health rules more vulnerable than ever.

Joe Mendelson, director of global warming policy at the National Wildlife Federation, said that because attacking the administration’s climate policies had resonance in last fall’s elections, there is a “feeling of empowerment among polluters that they can go all in on the EPA, not just on greenhouse gases.”


Read more: http://www.politico.com/news/stories/0111/48157.html#ixzz1C98NfmI5
2011-01-27 00:31:13Energy czar’s exit sparks intrigue over next steps - Politico
John Hartz
John Hartz
john.hartz@hotmail...
98.122.68.19

The safe bet is that Obama will phase out the climate office after Browner leaves, as part of a broader White House staff overhaul that’s focused on the 2012 campaign and building his image as business-friendly while he battles Hill Republicans on environmental rules.

In many eyes, expectations are high the Obama administration will return to a more traditional role in dealing with Browner’s portfolio, especially considering the shift in legislative priorities away from the sweeping cap-and-trade bill that died last year in the Senate.


Read more: http://www.politico.com/news/stories/0111/48186.html#ixzz1C9EItgrA
2011-01-27 02:35:14Rogues' Gallery or a "Who's Who?" of Americans blocking progress on climate legislation
BaerbelW

baerbel-for-350@email...
93.231.159.60
Most of you will most likely already have seen this handy rogues' gallery of no-do-gooders when it comes to climate-legislation in the US. I just thought it fit in "nicely" with this thread and the comments for each of the twelve are spot-on and don't mince words.
2011-01-27 03:12:10Prominent Conservative Threatens "Mass Bloodshed"
John Hartz
John Hartz
john.hartz@hotmail...
98.122.68.19

Prominent Conservative Threatens "Mass Bloodshed"

At tonight's State of the Union Address some Democratic and Republican lawmakers are making a hilariously empty gesture towards the "New Civility" by sitting next to each other instead of across the aisle (to resolve a lack of chumminess in Washington, the Nation's biggest problem).

Meanwhile, here's the latest from the people whose job it is to deliver right-wing political wins by hatemongering, demonizing opponents and flattering conservatives with absurd comparisons to the Founding Fathers:

 

 

CNN's Erick Erickson is also Editor-in-Chief and "Dear Leader" of the conservative blog Red State, so this charming passage posted by "The Directors" is presumably his doing:

Here at RedState, we too have drawn a line. We will not endorse any candidate who will not reject the judicial usurpation of Roe v. Wade and affirm that the unborn are no less entitled to a right to live simply because of their size or their physical location. Those who wish to write on the front page of RedState must make the same pledge. The reason for this is simple: once before, our nation was forced to repudiate the Supreme Court with mass bloodshed. We remain steadfast in our belief that this will not be necessary again, but only if those committed to justice do not waiver or compromise, and send a clear and unmistakable signal to their elected officials of what must be necessary to earn our support.

 

 

As Jamison Foser at Media Matters points out, Erick Erickson is providing State of the Union Address coverage for CNN tonight.

http://www.alternet.org/newsandviews/article/449106/prominent_conservative_threatens_%22mass_bloodshed%22/

2011-01-27 15:51:21Where the GOP presidential contenders stand on climate
John Hartz
John Hartz
john.hartz@hotmail...
98.122.68.19

This not a pretty picture.

http://www.grist.org/article/2011-01-21-gop-presidential-contenders-ways-to-screw-climate/P10

2011-02-04 00:05:57Off-topic: GOP presidential candidates
Ned

ned.flounders@yahoo...
129.170.22.212

This is completely off-topic for SkS, but I personally found it hilarious:

 

http://www.tnr.com/blog/jonathan-chait/82634/preliminary-breakdown-the-gop-contenders

 


The entry of Jon Huntsman into the Republican primary field has created strong competition for what has to be a tiny number of Republican voters who want a nominee who's both sane and Mormon:

Note that while the GOP field has two sane Mormon candidates, which is probably two more than there's room for, the "sane, non-Mormon"and "insane Mormon" fields are wide open. I'm not sure who's the best fit for the former category, but the latter is just screaming for Glenn Beck.


 

2011-02-12 06:37:49Deep Ideological Divide on Jobs Drives Fight Over EPA's CO2 Authority
John Hartz
John Hartz
john.hartz@hotmail...
98.122.68.19

A bitter GOP-led hearing on EPA's climate regs highlights an intractable ideological division over whether CO2 rules will create jobs and prosperity

http://solveclimatenews.com/news/20110211/deep-ideological-divide-jobs-drives-fight-over-epas-co2-authority?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=Feed%3A%20solveclimate%2Fblog%20%28SOLVECLIMATE%20NEWS%3A%20Daily%20Climate%20News%20and%20Analysis%29

2011-02-12 08:52:41US science agencies targeted for cuts
John Hartz
John Hartz
john.hartz@hotmail...
98.122.68.19

Energy research and environmental regulation among areas hardest hit in proposed budget plan.

http://www.nature.com/news/2011/110210/full/news.2011.84.html

2011-02-15 11:56:39East the Future - Paul Krugmann
John Hartz
John Hartz
john.hartz@hotmail...
98.122.68.19

Blog Post, February 12, 2011, 10:10 am

Eat the Future

The public says it wants to see government spending cut — and the Tea Partiers really, really want spending cut — but people don’t want to cut any program they like; and they like almost everything. What’s a conservative to do?

The obvious answer, once you think about it, is to eat the future: to cut spending in a way that undermines the nation’s long-run prospects, but doesn’t impose all that much pain on voters right now.

And that, as best as I can tell, is the running theme in the cuts proposed by House Republicans. The proposal is, deliberately I think, hard to read and interpret; I hope and assume that the good folks at CBPP will do the detail soon. But on a quick read, here are some of the cuts that jumped out at me:

WIC 1008 million

Food for Peace 544 million

NOAA 450 million

NASA 579 million

Energy efficiency and renewable energy 899

Science 1111 million

Nuclear nonproliferation 648 million

Federal buildings fund 1653 million

Homeland security administration 489 million

FEMA, various, around 1.2 billion

EPA clean water and drinking water about 1.8 billion

Community health centers 1.3 billion

Centers for disease control 900 million

WIC is nutritional aid for pregnant women and women with young children; let’s cut that, because the damage to the nation from malnourishment is a problem for future politicians. NOAA is weather and climate — hey, what we don’t know can’t hurt us. Nuclear nonproliferation — well, we probably won’t feel the pain of a terrorist nuke assembled from old Soviet fissile material for a couple of years. FEMA — well, how often do hurricanes hit New Orleans? CDC — with luck, by the time plague hits someone else can be blamed.

Don’t start thinking about tomorrow.

http://krugman.blogs.nytimes.com/2011/02/12/eat-the-future/

2011-02-15 19:18:41
citizenschallenge
Peter Miesler
citizenschallenge7@gmail...
96.14.32.21

Right ok, so consensus climatology is being attacked by all sorts of powerful Washington people these days.

What avenues are available to regular folks to influence what is going on in Washington these days?

2011-02-17 10:49:45Citizens Climate Lobby
John Hartz
John Hartz
john.hartz@hotmail...
98.122.68.19

There's a new player on the scene in the US and Canada:

http://www.citizensclimatelobby.org/

2011-02-17 20:23:17
MarkR
Mark Richardson
m.t.richardson2@gmail...
134.225.187.80
Should have called themselves 'Climate Hawks'. I think Romm's right, that sounds better
2011-02-20 05:56:14EPA fight heads to the Senate
John Hartz
John Hartz
john.hartz@hotmail...
98.122.68.19
http://www.politico.com/news/stories/0211/49857.html#comments