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Fracking protest message at Denver 350 rally cuts through nebulous “Forward on Climate” theme

DENVER, COLORADO- Score another success for Colorado Fractivists who crashed this weekend's climate rally with their unequivocal anti-fracking message. The February 17 event was intended to urge President Obama "Forward on Climate", to borrow his most recent campaign vagarity, but when official speeches began, and the prefab signs were distributed, it became unclear who might be trying to co-opt whom. Gas The 350.ORG sponsored march, coinciding with a rally and civil disobedience in DC, called specifically for a halt to the Keystone XL Pipeline and Tar Sands extraction which climate scientists have dubbed "game over" for hopes of averting climate disaster, but the dominant signage spoke vaguely of "Climate Action" and "It's Time to Cut Carbon" and "Big Coal Makes Us Sick", all of which are slogans used by proponents of natural gas. 350-ORG has been raising awareness of the imperative to reduce carbon emissions, while recognizing that the groundswell driving environmentalists across the country is opposition to oil & gas hydraulic fracturing. It's all the same fight to reduce burning of fossil fuels, but moderate allies like the Sierra Club haven't been prepared to denounce their new-found bed partners urging consumers to get "Beyond Coal." To her credit, local 350-ORG coordinator Micah Parkin incorporated fractivist groups into the Feb 17 rally, but Democratic Party panderers didn't get the memo. A representative read a letter of support from Senator Michael Bennet and was able to sneak past: "I stand with Obama" and even "in favor of US energy independence" although that's code for oil & gas exports, dependent on construction of the XL pipeline. But when Mark Udall's representative referred to "clean burning natural gas" the crowd booed. Even as he pleaded "we're on your side," the crowd wouldn't relent, making sure his takeaway would be that fracking compounded global warming, among its other horrors. The highlight of the rally occurred immediately afterward when the master of ceremonies, a twelve-year-old rapper and member of the Boulder based Earth Guardians, thanked Udall's rep affably but then assured the audience that "of course there's no such thing as clean natural gas!" Occupy A word about Occupy Denver's part in Sunday's march. Occupiers took the black-tie invitation to heart and turned up in black bloc attire with bandanas and balaclavas. OD then pushed the envelope to the consternation of parade marshals, stepping into the street at one point, blocking cars at another, in the spirit of their banner which read "ONLY DIRECT ACTION WILL STOP THE PIPELINE." To what end, creating friction during an event otherwise running smoothly? Who knows. The demonstration was uneventful and garnered scant media attention. Mixing it up might have helped, or not. The turnout was large but not up for a confrontation. Occupy didn't push it. The irony of 350-ORG supporters being upset by the antics of the Occupiers, was that behind the masks were many activists who'd actually gone to Texas to stop the XL pipeline, who'd gotten arrested, some out on $25,000 bond. How unfortunate that those troublemakers weren't recognized

Texas Gov. Rick GoodHair getting yet another job-creating Federal Bailout

38 new jobs but, like most of the "new jobs" of the "Texas Miracle" these are Federal "nanny state bailout" jobs which, like the other "new federal jobs" created, are pre-filled with existing out of state workers. And hopefully will be only temporary. Two C130 cargo planes w/ crews, air and ground, to fight the wildfires created by Rick Perry and the other Bozo governors who have spent the past decade and a half denying that their Oil Company Corporate Owners, the ones whose rectums every governor of Texas has inhabited since the early 1920s, were causing massive climate change. So Texas has the record for hottest summer of any state. That would include Arizona. Texas always held the record for Moron Governors. (Utah holds the record for Mormon Governors but that's a different story) And Perry Keeps The Tradition Alive Not that people deserve to be punished for the accumulated wealth and associated blood-guilt of a very few wealthy. Most of the people in Texas are good people like every other place on Earth. See, I can do that shit with the pat on the head for the "good" members of any minority whose leaders piss off the establishment. Eat it and smile, George Wallace.

Not yet a hurricane, probably won’t be, but Alex…

Tropical Depression Alex. If it stays out over the water it'll become a Tropical Storm, which for the purposes of the Oil S(l)ick is a moot reference. It might as well be a hurricane. And we're still in the "A"s. Haiti meanwhile has been pushed off the news. Well, they were pushed off long ago, by the Tiger Woods story among others.

For the Climate Deniers…

Bill O'Lie-ly said this January was the coldest on record. Perhaps he could learn a little science, specifically mathematics. If not then he could learn how to ask people whose business it is to provide scientifically sound information to for instance the Shipping Industry, farmers and the U.S. Military, none of whom are much noted for Radical Left Wing thought processes. Like NOAA, who reported that the average global ground temperature Increased by very nearly a full degree C. The IBM corporate model is founded in a mission statement they made back in 1945. When they got the funding to build the first "supercomputers" (Analog Calculators, actually, the "AC" part of their names) ENIAC and UNIVAC. That they would be able to predict major weather events a year in advance. This on "computers" which had less calculating power than this "dinosaur" 10 year old desktop I'm typing on right now. It's a spectacular example of Corporate Welfare gone terribly wrong. Bill-ionaire O'Reilly knows quite a bit about Corporate Welfare, but as it's his beneficiary on the Gilded Road to Hell, he's not going to squeak about it very loudly. Or, at all. So they extended the accurate predictions for major weather events from 5 days to 7. Big Hairy Deal, yes? Well, in a way. The failures of that business model, (for which they're still drawing royalties, an interesting economic term in what's supposed to be a "free" market) led to some pretty remarkable mathematic theories and applications of Chaos Theory. One is that not only the Earth but the Universe is a closed mathematic system. Finite. Iterations of what are supposed to be infinite variations, repetitions and patterns where the Patterns would have fallen apart if the system were infinte. So, how does an established pattern in a finite system develop such a major rift? But all that is above the heads of Bill-do and his demented fans. They're instead pushing the provincial notion that a small portion of the small system (relative to the universe) that hits us with snow in winter? The notion that snowstorms in winter would actually have become so anomalous that it's newsworthy should be a clue. But the Dumbass Patrol can't get a clue if somebody rubs their noses in it. I've got relatives. Of course. Some of them live in an almost Medieval Backward Poverty Zone called Cleburne, Texas. There's a joke in Cleburne on the lines of the maps you get in Johnson County only show Johnson County, and at the county line the world drops off. On the mythical maps the edges around the county line are filled with notations like "Terra Incognito" (Thet thar's where them Terrists live, boy) and "Here Be Dragons!!" There are people in Johnson County who have never made the arduous journey to Ft Worth. Ft Worth city limits are like two miles from the county line. Dallas is a myth they use to frighten their kids (Eat your vegetables and go on to bed. You know what happens to kids

Annie Leonard versus the people who brought you Enron and Goldman Sachs

COLORADO COLLEGE- Environmentalist Annie Leonard of THE STORY OF STUFF visits CC's Packard Hall. Here's an inescapably blunt video she's made in advance of the climate summit in Copenhagen, called The Story of Cap & Trade, where Leonard looks at the devils in the details: "free permits to big polluters, fake offsets and distraction from whats really required to tackle the climate crisis." Leonard knocked it out of the park at CC, setting a fine example for forward-thinking reformers. Keep moving, come back for the stragglers later. How exciting for this Colorado Springs audience that Leonard visits just as her internet impact is being targeted by those previously presumed to be her allies. It's a clever move, before COP15, to unmask the delinquents in our midst. Normally eco-radical Grist is alight with attacks on Leonard's Cap and Trade dressing down, but the charlatans can't see the clearcut from the trees. They're cap and trade insiders, who short Leonard for arguments she omits, although her video is only ten minutes long. One accuses the "semi-famous" Leonard of missing the mark, the other scolds the first for going too easy on her, beginning a catalog of errors with "Just colossally ignorant." Both Grist dopes with too much invested in eco-business as usual.

Colorado Springs power plants not among world’s 200 dirtiest by much

Good news, Colorado Spring's main power plant is not among the world's 200 biggest carbon offender power plants. But our neighbors are. One quarter of the world's dirtiest power plants (53) are in the US. All in red states, because the uneducted are the new black. Actually in the West many of these coal plants are foisted on the Indians, the enduring black. Colorado Springs is surrounded by: LARAMIE RIVER, Wheatland, Wyoming at 15 million tons of carbon INTERMOUNTAIN, Delta, Utah at 16 million CRAIG, Colorado at 12 million NAVAJO, Page, Arizon at 20 million SAN JUAN, New Mexico at 12 million MONTICELLO, Mount Pleasant, Texas at 18 million WELSH, Pittsburg, Texas at 12 million LA CYGNE, Kansas at 11 million (For the record, the worst offender is the TAICHUNG plant in Taiwan, which emits 40 million tons of carbon every year. Clean plants emit 0.) Falling short of ranking in the 200 worst, surrounding Colorado Springs, are: CHEROKEE, Denver, Colorado at 5 million COMANCHE, Pueblo, Colorado at 5 million HAYDEN, Colorado at 4 million PAWNE, Brush, Colorado at 4 million Carbon emissions ratings are based on a plant's efficiency relative to its intensity. On an interactive map offered by Carbon Monitoring For Action (CARMA), the dirty plants are in red, the clean in green. The mainstream media is working off of maps offered by Forbes magazine, not CARMA's. Notice the Forbes article sponsor is Shell Oil, who's leading the effort to extract oil shale, an ugly alternative to coal. But don't be fooled by Forbes' interesting omissions. Colorado Springs is red. The three plants operated by Colorado Springs Utility fall into the dirty category: DRAKE, Colorado Springs, 80903 at 2.3 million RD NIXON, Fountain, at 1.8 BIRDSALL Colorado Springs, 80907 at 0.1 That's right, the "cloud maker" located at Colorado Springs' center, is squarely in the red, pollution wise. A model of Clean Coal. Considered relatively cleaner are: FRONT RANGE POWER, Fountain, Colorado at 1.2 million FOUNTAIN VALLEY, at 0.2 million WN CLARK, Canon City, Colorado at 0.4 million LIMON, at 0.1 million Clean: COLORADO SPRINGS WICKS at 0 TESLA, Manitou Springs, Colorado at 0 NORAD, at 0.03 million

Clean Coal is a fossil fuels Free Lunch

There's no such thing as Clean Coal. The concept is an ingenious public relations gambit like Clean-Skies, an No-Child-Left-Behind. Colorado's supposedly progressive Governor Bill Ritter is an dirty backer. The attempted makeover of the dark fossil fuel has prompted an equal and opposite public reaction. Laudably, the industry is trying to raise public awareness to "what lies behind the plug." They ask energy consumers to face the reality that lights --their television even-- have to be powered somehow. The image they use is a piece of coal being tapped by an extension cord. It certainly looks magically detached from any complication. Leaving alone that you have to burn the coal (imagine depicting steaks cooking on a stone cold barbecue grill), I'd defy anyone to handle the piece of coal without getting the orange plug completely smudged. Of course, clean or not, coal is a fossil fuel, the consumption of which is one of the primary causes of Global Warming, aka Climate Change. "Clean Coal" is just a way for the oldest energy industry to get in on the alternative energy gravy train. The Coen Brothers have directed a hilarious television ad which parodies the Coal Companies pitching their product as an air freshener, even as the aerosol spews pure smoke. It's absolutely dispiriting to see Barack Obama championing "Clean Coal" in a TV spot. Who would not like to think that American ingenuity can figure out a way to burn coal cleanly? If we can reverse osmosis, halt aging and make 0% fat fat, why disbelieve we can't strip carbon of its essence? At the America's Power website, the coal industry promises to use Clean Coal to reduce our dependence on foreign oil, and of course, to provide jobs. A US map reveals several Clean Coal research sites in Colorado. They are Boulder, Denver, Englewood, Littleton, Wheat Ridge, Nucla and La Vita. Even if the lipstick on pig research is just a boondoggle to snag Federal funded jobs, aren't there real alternative energy sources to pursue?

National Geographic is a nature pic zoo

January's National Geographic featured an article about Charles Darwin. Juxtaposed against excerpts from Darwin's diary on the Beagle, were the usual photographs of nature at its most vivid. But an image of a glacier, purporting to match Darwin's awed description, left me slack- jawed with contrary impression. We've all been treated to then and now pictograms of retreating glaciers, so the National Geographic's usual reverse illusionist, nature-isn't-vanishing-act, wasn't going to work for this pastoral scene. I'm looking straight through the glossy NATURE industry, and it's nothing but a virtual zoo. You might say the world of nature documentaries keeps more to the spirit of the early collector-adventurers, who shot and stuffed their specimens, in the name of documenting their existence. Certainly the photographers of today are capturing the living images of soon to be gone phenomena. Perhaps it's more appropriate to regard their nature images as exhibits of Natural History. Except that Museum goers know that what they are looking at is dead. Nature program viewers are given no such insight. And need they, really? If the closest that the recliner-set get to the Pacific Ocean is their HD flat screen TV, what does it matter if the Pacific is full of plastic instead of fish? Nature-appreciation wise, the eyes of the climate-controlled majority dictate its value. The illusion which nature programs create is of a living Earth, susceptible to cycles, or whatever excuse they present for why you are hearing reports of coral bleaching while enjoying high saturation images of vibrant, fully vital, reefs. You are shown things alive, and so you believe it lives. That's where this glossy facade is a lot more like a zoo. Zoos are criticized for showing nature out of context. Even as the best zoo settings approach the theatrical stages of natural history dioramas, they still present an inert being. The zoo animal is not searching for food, fending off predators, or jockeying for a mate. The zoo attraction might almost be preserved in formaldehyde, for all it teaches about nature, and mankind's relation to his origin. Zoos, like domestic animals neutered or spayed, like doe-eyed Disney renditions of circle-of-life citizen animals, teach an antiseptic version of wild life, where man might deduce that his own life's purpose is but a few years spent pinned like a butterfly adjacent thousands and millions more. Camera lens filters enhance reality, camera lenses compress and direct it. That much we already knew. Nature programs and nature photography present life as a spectacle, and seem at first glance to highlight every minutia for our increased understanding. But shown out of the context of the Earth's present difficulties, the images inform less than they distort.

G8 Summit presides over the world’s growing economic collapse

So what's going on over in Japan at the G8 summit? What are the big shots doing over there? Few follow these mysterious proceedings in the press because it all seems so inscrutable. Besides, we are taught to believe, the rich and powerful kind fathers that they be know what they are doing and all will certainly be worked out for the rest of us for the best. So let's cut through some of this crap for a sec and think about it a little, why don't we? It is not that hard to see what's really going on, since all one has to do is occasionally look at the business sections of the press and there we see an increasing panic setting in. Will there be a CRASH is the big question? And the business press increasingly is aware that YES, there will be. Why is that? The G8 has 3 major problems it is dealing with, and they haven't a clue in how to successfully manage any of the 3 crises! Let's list the BIG 3 problem areas then... 1) Declining world energy supplies in oil, with resulting rise in prices (including food items) due to this. Energy is needed for movement. 2) Impending world ecological collapse due to centuries of over exploitation of natural resources. Ecological stability is necessary for life. 3) Economic Bubble due to be burst soon. Markets do not have any relation now to economic activity actually necessary for human well being. Two big examples are the US 'health system' and the Pentagon managed military industrial welfare system for the big corporations. Two gigantic overgrown leeches on world economic activity. So what will the G8 predictably do to deal with these 3 areas of crisis? Will they do anything different? The answer is simply NO, they will not, and that is precisely why the business sectors themselves are beginning to panic. They see it as simply that there is nothing that they can do, and they are right. Under their guidance, or lack of it, the world will simply begin to collapse big time. It is up to the little people (who the big people have total contempt for despite having no answers for anything themselves) to do something about it, or we will all perish. Meanwhile, go shopping (while you still can) or watch some more TV. It beats being thrown in jail.

My Earth Minute of Reflection

It was a great idea to distill Earth Day for the modern attention span. But our culture has a slowing concern for what it will take to change human behavior patterns. Will it be corrected by a only a tolerable interruption of our cynical self-obsessed passivity?

A gift for a traitor

Adbusters: In the classic novel, Treasure Island, any pirate suspected of betrayal is handed a piece of paper with a black spot on it -- a warning that the receiver has been marked for judgement. So dreaded is this mark that when the grizzled pirate Billy Bones has one slipped into his hand, he suffers a fear-induced stroke and dies. Since the late 1980s, the oil gian ExxonMobil has pumped tens of millions of dollars into dozens of front groups whose sole job was to confuse people about the link between fossil fuels and global warming. This strategy of "manufacturing uncertainty" has served ExxonMobile well, with the company riding its wave of confusion to record profits -- $39 billion in 2006 alone, making it the world's most profitable public corporation. Now, faced with solid science that it can no longer even pretend to refute, ExxonMobile is using a multi-million dollar ad campaign to wriggle out of responsibility for its role in endangering the planet with expanding deserts, vanishing fresh water supplies, rising sea levels and massive crop failures. It says that it has stopped funding fake grassroots organizations, and that it is sinking a tiny fraction of its profits into alternative energy research. We say this isn't good enough. We say that if you act like a plundering villainm you should be treated like a plundering villain. We say it's time to hand ExxonMobil --the modern world's equivalent of a traitorous pirate-- its very own black spot. Help us mark ExxonMobil for judgement. Join the strategy talks in the Meme Wars forums at Adbusters.org

Stephen Johnson auto industry minion

There it is, the Neocon ensemble: black suit, red tie and US flag lapel pin, the mark of graft, greed, and audacious insincerity.   EPA Chief Stephen Johnson defended his decision today to deny California a waiver to set its own automobile emissions standards. (The progressive CAFE standards and the pending LCFS regulations.) His rationale? Climate change threatens no significant adverse effect on the state.

Climate Change -who benefits?

Are "Climate Change" and "Global Warming" a rather convenient way for the large investment companies (now that they're all jumping on the bandwagon) to step forward, in lock step with the Congress, and find the ways in which they can become the "players" in the unfolding "crisis" and have a new tax that will, of course as always, be a burden most on those who can least afford it? Or are they really concerned about the planet? Was Gore's "An Inconvenient Truth" more of an investment talk aimed at these owners of capital getting in on a carbon tax and trading scheme, rather than a real debate that gave time to the dissenting scientific view? And, is the dogma now that CO2 and greenhouse effect are really driving the race toward ownership of emerging large alternative energy companies in which the corporations will likely win? Calling CO2 a pollutant is deception. It is what trees and plants thrive on. Ethanol has now become the new "savior" in our effort of curbing the import of foreign oil. But ethanol is net-energy. That is, it takes more energy to create it than it gives back, besides the agricultural mess it will lead us to. How is it in past earth warming cycles, man's absence was a causation? Seemingly impossible. Is the Solar cycle part of a natural global warming process? Why aren't we moving instead to form citizen owned solar and wind utilities that will help the vast majority to utilize these energies without the huge up front costs usually associated? Or unless implemented immediately and widely, would it be all for naught as the worlds energy needs will never be affected by alternative energies? In other words, how do you replace the 85 million barrels of oil a day the planet uses? Not to mention the tons of coal and millions of cubic feet of natural gas? Gore's 7 good foot soldiers steps to reduce Co2 "pollution" is almost Hitlarian. Don't think, just do what I say ...from a spineless politician who wouldn't stand up (and told others not to) for an investigation into the 2000 stolen election. Capitalism will overtake any real discussion of problems we face and destroy dissenters who offer up real solutions to energy use that are owned by the populace at large. And once they've taxed us for carbon they will figure out a way to tax the sun or wind for those who take advantage of it for their homes. Yes, reduce your use of oil, gas, coal, etc... but beware who really benefits from this mostly un-debated scare of global warming. What do we get for behaving as they want us to? A cleaner world? But no monetary gain for us? If our government was really serious about this the tax incentives would come back as in the 70's and much bigger this time. And in all states. But that would hurt the oil-energy companies. Some interesting articles and comments for your consideration: Denial By Frank Furedi, Spiked Online "The

John Howard- Oz’s political dinosaur dies due to Global Warming

John Howard, Australia's political dinosaur, is finally dead due to the effects of Global Warming. He lost the election for Australian Prime Minister, and the reason why is that... like our own local idiots at The Gazette editorial pages he was a political dinosaur who pooh-poohed Global Warming as being of any real concern to him. But it killed him in the end. In the land most effected by the Ozone Hole and Coral Reef Destruction, drought, and extinction of wildlife, John Howard insisted on mouthing off the same old prescriptions for yet more disaster. Plus, he was a political whore in bed with George W. Bush, Dick Cheney, and Donald Rumsfield. In the end though, Global Warming finally caught up with the dumb bastard. See John Howard Asleep on Climate Change, where Australian Labor nails him on the issue. Here is Howard's mistaken belief... Climate not main challenge: PM. As we can see from the election results, this dinosaur was absolutely mistaken. Like with the Gazette editorial staff, some political Dodo Birds will either have to evolve or just go extinct. In Oz, Howard is now dead. In Colorado Springs, the paper is just less read.

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