Global Warming

The Copenhagen Fix?

Submitted: Dec 10, 2009
By: 
Badlands Journal editorial board

Those interested in reading the "Danish text" can find it through the link to the article. - ed.s


12-9-09
The Guardian (UK)
Copenhagen climate summit in disarray after 'Danish text' leak:
Developing countries react furiously to leaked draft agreement that would hand more power to rich nations, sideline the UN's negotiating role and abandon the Kyoto protocol
John Vidal in Copenhagen
http://www.guardian.co.uk/environment/2009/dec/08/copenhagen-climate-summit-disarray-danish-text

The UN Copenhagen climate talks are in disarray today after developing countries reacted furiously to leaked documents that show world leaders will next week be asked to sign an agreement that hands more power to rich countries and sidelines the UN's role in all future climate change negotiations.

The document is also being interpreted by developing countries as setting unequal limits on per capita carbon emissions for developed and developing countries in 2050; meaning that people in rich countries would be permitted to emit nearly twice as much under the proposals.

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Big muddy meetin' in Ole Merced

Submitted: Nov 09, 2009
By: 
Badlands Journal editorial board

 

There seems to have been an interesting speaker in town last week, Vaughn Grisham, director of the McLean Institute for Community Development at Ole Miss. The elite was there, led by Bob Carpenter, Mr. UC Merced. According to the local McClatchy Chain outlet, Grisham thought Merced had it made in the shade because of UC Merced. It made us wonder if that was his view, why he was invited at all to the sixth most economically stressed county in the nation with one of the three highest national foreclosure rates. But, apparently, Mr. UC Merced is now leading something called the Tupelo Committee of Merced County.

 

Prior to looking into Grisham and McLean, the editorial board only knew about Tupelo for two of its famous sons, Jimmy Rogers, the Singing Brakeman, and Elvis Presley, “T for Texas” and “You Ain’t Nothing but a Hound Dog (jest a-cryin’ all the time).”

 

George McLean was a great man. We’ve included some very inspiring material below about him and what he did in his lifetime in northeast Mississippi.

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Welcome to the Age of Ordinary

Submitted: Oct 27, 2009
By: 
Badlands Journal editorial board

 

The claims for economic, social and environmental justice are ultimately based a moral claim not to waste, oppress or despoil the biosphere. The idea is that if people rationally consider the arguments, they will go and do better in these areas. However, a completely different side of those arguments is provided by natural reality: the economy is based on oil, the quantity of oil is diminishing, therefore the economy will have to

change; systematic impoverishment of the working class destroys the market for the nation's industries and leads to sharper and sharper criticism of the rich and finally to social unrest; and impacts of accelerating global warming are themselves the greatest material argument for the existence of a grave environmental crisis.

 

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Subprime/junk carbon credits

Submitted: Oct 11, 2009
By: 
Badlands Journal editorial board

Today, as the twentieth anniversary of the Rio summit rapidly approaches, the world ecological struggle is more polarized than ever. A considerable part of the environmental movement (including many formerly on the left) has gone over to strategies of "green capitalism" and "ecological modernism." Sustainable development has become increasingly identified with the promotion of accumulation within the system, and even with some kind of alliance with neoliberalism. Environmental reform is no longer seen mainly as the reformist creation of an environmental state on top of the capitalist economy (in a manner akin to the old welfare state), but is now frequently conceptualized, even more conservatively, as an investment-driven process that is simply the leading edge of the economy. This view has been popularized by the Breakthrough Institute and Thomas Friedman's market-driven model of a "green revolution." The business of "sustainability," in this view, is simply a new frontier for accumulation, in which carbon trading is the model scheme." --John Bellamy Foster, The Ecological Revolution, p. 139.

 

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Welcome to Pipelineistan

Submitted: Oct 04, 2009
By: 
Badlands Journal editorial board

At the most basic level, it's a matter of the West yet again trying, in the energy sphere, to bypass Russia. For this to happen, however - and it wouldn't hurt if you opened the nearest atlas for a moment - Europe desperately needs to get a handle on Central Asian energy resources, which is easy to say but has proven surprisingly hard to do.

10-3-09
Asia Times
Jumpin' Jack Verdi, it's a gas, gas, gas
By Pepe Escobar
http://www.atimes.com/atimes/Central_Asia/KJ03Ag01.html
BRUSSELS - Oil and natural gas prices may be relatively low right now, but don't be fooled. The new great game of the 21st century is always over energy and it's taking place on an immense chessboard called Eurasia. Its squares are defined by the networks of pipelines being laid across the oil heartlands of the planet. Call it Pipelineistan. If, in Asia, the stakes in this game are already impossibly high, the same applies to the "Euro" part of the great Eurasian landmass - the richest industrial area on the planet. Think of this as the real political thriller of our time.

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Response to a Sun-Star editorial

Submitted: Sep 30, 2009
By: 
Bill Hatch

 

Merced Sun-Star Executive Editor Mike Tharp flew part of the Westside in a private plane with a realtor/Westside rancher named Gail McCullough and came back with revelations. It reminded him of Iraq, where he seems to need to go, whenever the reality of Merced and the San Joaquin Valley overwhelm him, to find refreshment in the Pentagon propaganda mill. You can sugar-coat failure with belief but it is still failure, out there on the imperial frontier or here at home.

 

He begins by announcing, “We live in a desert,” then extends the sentence to include everyone in California. But, I didn’t imagine dry-farming orchards on the coast for a decade. Tharp must be writing about Los Angeles.

 

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The WalMart project public comment period

Submitted: Sep 27, 2009
By: 
Badlands Journal editorial board

The Merced City Council is to be commended for holding two lengthy public hearings on the WalMart distribution center project including citizens with sharply opposed views on health, human safety and economic growth, who spoke their mind in an orderly, safe process. This begs the lie of Rep. Dennis Cardoza, the Pimlico Kid, that citizens in his district could not meet together in town hall meetings to discuss health care reform. In fact, on another contentious issue, Riverside Motorsports Park, a large number of town hall meetings were held, some by proponents, some by opponents. We observed several moments of tension and name calling in those meetings, held without security, but only feelings were bruised.

 

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Corruption at the Department of Interior

Submitted: Sep 19, 2009
By: 
Badlands Journal editorial board

The federal Justice Department is looking into the alleged corruption of former Interior Secretary Gale Norton. Under Norton, Interior’s corruption reached baroque proportions, particularly in issues involving California, as stories beneath indicate. For underlying documentation, readers are urged to consult Interior’s Office of Inspector General’s special reports at http://www.doioig.gov/index.php?menuid=2&viewid=-1&viewtype=REPORT&pgid=598&rpttype=special

 

 

Badlands Journal editorial board

 

 

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High-speed rail EIR inadequate

Submitted: Aug 27, 2009
By: 
Badlands Journal editorial board

Planning and Conservation League

August 26, 2009                                                                             

 

Court Supports Claims that the High Speed Rail Authority's Environmental Review is Faulty

 

Sacramento - Today Superior Court Judge Michael Kenny issued a decision supporting contentions by the Planning and Conservation League and other plaintiffs that the California High-Speed Rail Authority (HSRA) did not adequately study the potential impacts before choosing the Pacheco Pass route into the Bay Area from the Central Valley. This decision means the choice to build the train along the Pacheco Pass route will be rescinded and the impacts and alternatives thoroughly studied.

 

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California water: some recent theological texts

Submitted: Jul 12, 2009
By: 
Badlands Journal editorial board

Every culture has its sacred texts. Chinese, the Sumerians, Indians, Persians, Hebrews, Greeks, Romans, Arabs -- and on and on. You name the culture and we'll name the sacred text -- from the I Ching to the Koran and beyond. It is the world's greatest literature,

the true treasury of the deepest human values and highest human visions.

 

In California, we have the water news. Because we are so young, dynamic and full of the belief that economic growth equals population growth, the notion that natural resources, especially water, may have limits, has created a theological crisis here in California.

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