We can see in our mind’s eye all the generations to come, and so we know why we fight.
ALL I EVER wanted to see was a movement of people to stop climate change, and now I’ve seen it. And it looks so beautiful. It’s hometown heroes like our friends in D.C. who’ve been fighting coal plants, and far-flung heroes like those who’ve been bravely blocking the Keystone XL pipeline with their bodies in Texas. It’s people who understand that the fight against fracking and coal ports and taking the tops off mountains is ultimately the fight for a living planet; it’s people who have lived through Sandy and survived the drought, some of whom I got to go to jail with recently.
In February, more than 30,000 demonstrated in Washington, D.C., against the Keystone XL pipeline. Photo by Rick Reinhard.
It’s the students at 252 colleges who are now fighting the fossil fuel industry head on to force divestment of their school’s stock—the biggest student movement in decades. It’s all of you—you are the antibodies kicking in, as the planet tries to fight its fever.
We’ve waited a very long time to get started, I fear. We’ve already watched the Arctic melt; our colleagues in 191 countries tell us daily of some new drought or flood.
Because we’ve waited this long, the easiest answers are no longer enough; we’re going to have to make tough decisions. Our theme has to be: When you’re in a hole, stop digging. Above all stop the Keystone XL pipeline. The president can do it with a single stroke of his pen, and if he does he will become the first world leader to veto a big project because it’s bad for the climate. That would be a legacy—and a signal to the rest of the world that we’re serious about this fight. It’s his test.
And so we will keep making our case—we will follow the president and the secretary of state wherever they go this spring. But we’ll have actions across the country that focus on all the other holes we’re still digging too. And as summer comes on, I hope you’ll circle those days toward the end of July that are, on average, the hottest each year. We’re going to try and make them politically hot too—maybe set aside a few dollars each week for a bail fund?
SO FAR WE’VE been firm but peaceful, diverse but united. We have to stay that way, because the job we’ve undertaken is the most important one that any humans have ever been entrusted with. It is our job to make sure that the planet doesn’t catastrophically overheat. The oil companies aren’t going to do that—their business plan is to wreck the earth. The government isn’t going to do that—they’re too busy taking money from the oil companies. ….(read more).
Monday, 08 April 2013 16:20 Tory Field and Beverly Bell
Bordering an interstate highway in Arkansas, a giant billboard with a photo of a stoic-looking farmer watches over the speeding traffic. He’s staring into the distance against the backdrop of a glowing wheat field, with the caption “America’s Farmers Grow America.” It’s an image to melt all our pastoral hearts.
Until we read the small print in the corner: “Monsanto.”
The maker of Agent Orange, Monsanto’s former motto used to be, “Without chemicals, life itself would be impossible.” Today its tag line is “Committed to Sustainable Agriculture, Committed to Farmers.” Its website claims the company helps farmers “be successful [and] produce healthier foods… while also reducing agriculture’s impact on our environment.” It even boasts of the corporation’s dedication to human rights.
Behind the PR gloss is a very different picture. Via Campesina, the world’s largest confederation of farmers with member organizations in 70 countries, has called Monsanto one of the “principal enemies of peasant sustainable agriculture and food sovereignty for all peoples.” Via Campesina members also target Monsanto as a driving influence behind land grabs, forcing small farmers off their land and out of work. The agribusiness giants also contribute to climate change and other environmental disasters, outgrowths of industrial agriculture. ….(read more).
Published on Apr 5, 2013
http://www.democracynow.org – Longtime media-reform advocate Robert McChesney looks at how the future of American politics could be largely determined by who controls the Internet in his newest book. “‘Digital Disconnect’ talks about the difference between the mythology of the Internet
Published on Apr 9, 2013
http://www.democracynow.org – An animal rights investigator details how he has spent over a decade secretly filming animal abuse and why that work is now imperiled by a wave of laws sweeping the country. Speaking on the condition we conceal his identity, “Pete” has secretly captured animal abuse on farms and slaughterhouses after applying to work at the location. He has released video footage to law enforcement and activist groups such as Mercy for Animals, helping spark national outcry and charges against the abusers. His investigations and footage have led to at least 15 criminal cases and have been used in several documentaries. But now Pete’s work is under threat — a dozen or so state legislatures have introduced bills that target people who covertly expose farm animal abuse. Nicknamed “ag-gag” laws, they would make it illegal to covertly videotape livestock farms, or apply for a job at one without disclosing affiliations with animal-rights groups. They also require activists to hand over undercover videos within 24 hours, preventing them from amassing a trove of material and publicizing their findings on their own
Published on Apr 9, 2013
http://www.democracynow.org – So-called “ag-gag” bills that criminalize undercover filming on farms and at slaughterhouses to document criminal animal abuse are sweeping the country. Five states, including Missouri, Utah and Iowa, already have such laws in place. North Carolina has just become the latest state to consider such a law, joining a list that includes Arkansas, California, Indiana, Nebraska, Pennsylvania, Tennessee and Vermont. Many of these bills have been introduced with the backing of the American Legislative Exchange Council, or ALEC, a mechanism for corporate lobbyists to help write state laws. We host a debate on the Ag-Laws with two guests: Independent journalist Will Potter; and Emily Meredith, communications director for the Animal Agriculture Alliance.