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Sun Feb 24, 2019, 12:27 PM

This is an emergency, damn it


This is an emergency, damn it
Green New Deal critics are missing the bigger picture.
By David Roberts@drvoxdavid@vox.com Feb 23, 2019, 11:50am EST


Earlier this month, Sen. Ed Markey (D-MA) and Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY) introduced a Green New Deal resolution laying out an ambitious set of goals and principles aimed at transforming and decarbonizing the US economy.

The release prompted a great deal of smart, insightful writing, but also a lot of knee-jerk and predictable cant. Conservatives called it socialist. Moderates called it extreme. Pundits called it unrealistic. Wonks scolded it over this or that omission. Political gossip columnists obsessed over missteps in the rollout.

What ties the latter reactions together, from my perspective, is that they seem oblivious to the historical moment, like thespians acting out an old, familiar play even as the theater goes up in flames around them.

To put it bluntly: this is not normal. We are not in an era of normal politics. There is no precedent for the climate crisis, its dangers or its opportunities. Above all, it calls for courage and fresh thinking.

Rather than jumping into individual responses, I want to take a step back and try to situate the Green New Deal in our current historical context, at least as I see it. Then it will be clearer why I think so many critics have missed the mark.

The earthís climate has already warmed 1 degree Celsius from preindustrial levels, unleashing a cascade of super-charged heat waves, wildfires, hurricanes, storms, water shortages, migrations, and conflicts. Climate change is not a threat; itís here. The climate has changed.

And it is changing more rapidly than at any time in millions of years. The human race is leaving behind the climatic conditions in which all of advanced civilization developed, going back to the beginning of agriculture. We have no certainty about what will happen next, mainly because we have no certainty about what we will do, but we know the changes are bad and going to get much worse, even with concerted global action.

Without concerted global action ó and with a few bad breaks on climate sensitivity, population, and fossil fuel projections ó the worst-case scenarios include civilization-threatening consequences that will be utterly disastrous for most of the planetís species.

more...

https://www.vox.com/energy-and-environment/2019/2/23/18228142/green-new-deal-critics

23 replies, 3557 views

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Arrow 23 replies Author Time Post
Reply This is an emergency, damn it (Original post)
babylonsister Feb 2019 OP
Kurt V. Feb 2019 #1
Achilleaze Feb 2019 #2
Autumn Feb 2019 #3
Mr. Quackers Feb 2019 #4
Mosby Feb 2019 #6
crazytown Feb 2019 #12
Mr. Quackers Feb 2019 #15
crazytown Feb 2019 #17
Mr. Quackers Feb 2019 #18
Post removed Feb 2019 #20
Magoo48 Feb 2019 #5
SunSeeker Feb 2019 #7
lunatica Feb 2019 #8
Honeycombe8 Feb 2019 #9
brer cat Feb 2019 #22
mtngirl47 Feb 2019 #10
rgbecker Feb 2019 #11
Cetacea Feb 2019 #13
Hortensis Feb 2019 #14
brer cat Feb 2019 #23
Roy Rolling Feb 2019 #16
elleng Feb 2019 #19
Cetacea Feb 2019 #21

Response to babylonsister (Original post)

Sun Feb 24, 2019, 12:47 PM

1. K&R

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Response to babylonsister (Original post)

Sun Feb 24, 2019, 12:50 PM

2. K&R

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Response to babylonsister (Original post)

Sun Feb 24, 2019, 12:50 PM

3. The lack of urgency is what's troubling to me.

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Response to babylonsister (Original post)

Sun Feb 24, 2019, 12:53 PM

4. The entire planet would have to come together as ONE

 

to solve this global crisis.

Guess what? Ain't gonna happen.

The rich will adapt because they can pay, the rest of us, not so much.

No one who can do anything actually cares.

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Response to Mr. Quackers (Reply #4)

Sun Feb 24, 2019, 01:06 PM

6. sad, but true.

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Response to Mr. Quackers (Reply #4)

Sun Feb 24, 2019, 03:06 PM

12. So do nothing

Thatís the logical conclusion to that argument isnít it? Give up, itís too difficult, itís hopeless.

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Response to crazytown (Reply #12)

Sun Feb 24, 2019, 03:11 PM

15. What would you propose?

 

protesting? "Feel good" solutions?

Reality kinda sucks sometimes, especially when the immense truth of the situation is staring you right in the face.

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Response to Mr. Quackers (Reply #15)

Sun Feb 24, 2019, 03:19 PM

17. Activism

ĎWe canít beat the rich and powerful so donít even tryí doesnít cut it for me but certainly has had ardent adherents throughout history amongst the nameless billions who never made a jot of difference and were never even missed.

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Response to crazytown (Reply #17)

Sun Feb 24, 2019, 03:21 PM

18. disconnect the masses from television and smartphones

 

fill their bellies, you might have a chance.

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Response to Mr. Quackers (Reply #18)


Response to babylonsister (Original post)

Sun Feb 24, 2019, 12:55 PM

5. Thanks for your post.

Without a ďthe house is on fireĒ comprehensive response to climate change worldwide, across the environmental spectrum, all other long and medium range plans become horrific ironies.

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Response to babylonsister (Original post)

Sun Feb 24, 2019, 02:10 PM

7. Then attack Republicans, not Democrats, damn it.

It is Republicans who are blocking action.

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Response to babylonsister (Original post)

Sun Feb 24, 2019, 02:38 PM

8. If we don't do something deliberately to deal with climate change

We simply donít deserve this planet. Life is better off without the human species to destroy it.

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Response to babylonsister (Original post)

Sun Feb 24, 2019, 02:44 PM

9. No Democrat is arguing that climate change doesn't exist or that something shouldn't be done.

So that's not an argument for any particular legislation.

The argument is this:

Either you support a bold plan that won't get passed;

Or you support a decent plan that might get passed.

What's the old saying? Don't snub something that can be done, because you're waiting for perfection.


This is the essence of getting legislation passed. The Democrats are not in control of the Senate. So we can't pass something that at least some Republicans are willing to go along with.

Republicans will not...ever...vote for the newer bill. Ever. It's even controversial among Democrats.

I'm a diehard environmentalist, far left on that spectrum, and even I have a problem with some of the suggestions. It's naive and impractical, and even unnecessarily harmful to people's jobs and our economy.

Few have given this more thought than Gore. People need to see what Gore thinks, IMO.

We certainly don't want to do wht Cortez wants, since so far she has proven not to be aware of obvious facts (like she didn't vote for the Democratic bills to open the govt because, as she said, she didn't want to fund ICE....but the first bill just extended the 2018 budget for 3 weeks, and the 2nd bill had no ICE funding at all. She was dead wrong in her facts. And that's not the only time.)

You can only say "Take this bill and pass it, or else" when you have the power to do that. The Democrats don't have that power at this time. And Cortez has little power among the Washington politicians. So presenting her bill that way all but ensures that even some Democrats won't vote for it. She has a lot to learn about politics. Honey is sweeter than a baseball bat.

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Response to Honeycombe8 (Reply #9)

Mon Feb 25, 2019, 02:05 AM

22. +++

I appreciate the dose of reality into the conversation.

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Response to babylonsister (Original post)

Sun Feb 24, 2019, 02:54 PM

10. When we return to full power then we can talk about it and do something about it.

In the mean time....let's get some Democrats elected to the Senate and the White House.

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Response to babylonsister (Original post)

Sun Feb 24, 2019, 02:56 PM

11. Why are so many on DU, so many Democrats up in arms when asked to sign onto the GND Resolution?

It's the way things are supposed to work in a Democracy. People have ideas, they promote their plan, they write laws, they campaign their point of view. Suddenly a senior senator is confronted with a campaign which is properly using kids to make their point and she doesn't want to sign on...she thinks her idea is better....but OMG! Kids were manipulated, videos were edited, the senator looks like a jerk. WTF? Must be an evil plot by inexperienced young new Representative...not to mention veteran Massachusetts Senator.....ITS THE RUSSIANS trying to divide the party!


Jesus Christ. Gimmeabreak.

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Response to babylonsister (Original post)

Sun Feb 24, 2019, 03:07 PM

13. It certainly is. We are in abrupt climate change now

But the reportage (and reticent scientists) will continue to talk about 2100 and sea level rise.

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Response to babylonsister (Original post)

Sun Feb 24, 2019, 03:08 PM

14. Assinine demonstration of willful ignorance -- at best.

This is DEMOCRATIC Underground. This shouldn't seem anything but to people here.

Those who believe our futures depend on amateurs who don't even have a real plan grabbing the helm, really, really need to go read about what the Democratic Party has done, is doing, and will do IF enough voters have the sense to keep big business and Republican knuckledraggers from retaining control of government.

Our Democratic congressional caucuses include many climate/energy/ water/ag/environment experts who bring years of committed activism on these subjects. A bunch ran for office specifically TO fight climate change from the seats of power. They have all been working with thousands of dedicated experts outside government and in many nations.

The group insidiously pretending none of this exists are political activists with mainly IT/social media expertise. They aren't even slightly experts on climate, energy, fresh water, sustainable ag, or environmental issues. They've probably never seen and couldn't understand even one of the highly technical studies our committees are using and commissioning to write climate legislation.

They are using new the public fear of our climate crises in an attempt to build power, but offer no serious, workable ideas about how to stop them and are trying to sabotage the serious work of Democrats in congress. "Green New Deal" is little more than a slogan and a platform.

Their possible contribution could be in helping the public demand action, who will ultimately have the sense to vote Democrat to get it. And let's hope that's just what happens.

The threat they pose, though, is that by misleading the public and undermining confidence in Democrats -- again -- they could help the Republicans keep power and block all climate action.

Again. We cannot repeat 2016 in 2020 because this time there may be no coming back from another electoral disaster, no third chance.

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Response to Hortensis (Reply #14)

Mon Feb 25, 2019, 02:07 AM

23. Amen!

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Response to babylonsister (Original post)

Sun Feb 24, 2019, 03:19 PM

16. Delay is a Tactic

Rich people can delay. When you are wealthy, you are not compelled to act. You wait for lower prices because you don't have to buy today. You wait for a crisis because you can exploit people grandly in a crisis.

The delay in government is the same tactic. They think they can survive, if not thrive, in a climate crisis. It's hard-wired stupidity.

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Response to babylonsister (Original post)

Sun Feb 24, 2019, 03:23 PM

19. The Green New Deal Is Better Than Our Climate Nightmare NYT Editorial

'The ambitious plan has had a rocky start, but it has also changed the national conversation. That alone is reason to applaud it.

Itís hard to believe, but worth recalling, that during the presidential debates in 2016, not a single question about climate change was put to Hillary Clinton or Donald Trump. That, of course, was before a plague of hurricanes, droughts and savage forest fires in California and around the world captured the publicís attention; before Mr. Trump brought renewed focus to the very issue he had dismissed as a hoax by fecklessly rolling back nearly every positive policy thing President Barack Obama had done to address it; before a series of frightening scientific reports appeared last year, warning that the window of opportunity to ward off the worst consequences of a warming globe was quickly closing.

It was also long before anyone had seen a nonbinding congressional resolution calling for something called the Green New Deal, an ambitious plan to tackle climate change (and a lot else, too) that earlier this month burst like a shooting star upon the Washington political and legislative scene. The resolution ó introduced by Ed Markey, a Democratic senator from Massachusetts, and Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, a newly elected Democratic representative whose district covers parts of the Bronx and Queens ó calls for a ď10-year national mobilizationĒ through giant investments in infrastructure and carbon-free energy. It has since won the full or partial allegiance of a half-dozen Democratic presidential hopefuls who pray that town hall participants or debate moderators will ask them what they think about global warming. Which in turn means that, whatever becomes of the plan, it will have moved climate change ó a serious issue that has had serious trouble gaining traction ó to a commanding position in the national conversation. That alone is reason to applaud it.'>>>

https://www.nytimes.com/2019/02/23/opinion/green-new-deal-climate-democrats.html?

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Response to elleng (Reply #19)

Sun Feb 24, 2019, 04:02 PM

21. Thank you for posting that.

Last edited Sun Feb 24, 2019, 11:18 PM - Edit history (1)

I've argued with others that I thought the important thing is that she is getting it in the news, where it belongs. Scientists released a new report that conclude that we have 12 years. And....crickets.

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