Daily Archives: January 18, 2016

The invisible catastrophe sickening families in California

E120, e130, e145,

Paris Means Climate Change Science Is Here to Stay

Now that the dust has settled, what does the future hold for climate change?

U.N. climate change conference in Paris.

By Jeff Nesbit Dec. 14, 2015, at 1:51 p.m. + More

The historic Paris climate agreement is concluded. Every country in the world is now in the climate fight, to one degree or another. In its wake are three obvious and important markers for those who’ve paid attention:

First, President Obama’s legacy is likely secure – his suite of executive actions on climate change round out a trio of significant achievements with the U.S.-Iran nuclear deal and the Affordable Care Act as benchmarks for historians.

Second, 20 years of frustration in international climate negotiations are now in the dustbin of history. The Paris agreement erased all of that in a fortnight.

And, third, whatever remained of the contrived, artificial climate science “debate” in the media is gone for good. Now, the focus for global media is on immediate and impending climate impacts – such as the reason why millions are fleeing the desertification around the Sahel region in Africa.

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“We Have Been Betrayed”: Activist Who Refused to Shake Obama’s Hand Decries Latest Immigration Raids


Democracy Now!

Published on Jan 5, 2016

Democracynow.org – The Obama administration has begun conducting raids and detaining families as part of an effort to deport Central Americans who have fled violence in their home countries. At least 121 people have been detained so far. At one home in Georgia, Ana Lizet Mejia, a Honduran woman who fled the country after her brother was murdered by gangs, was taken into custody along with her 9-year-old son after an early-morning raid. “In the same way that we fled a country where people were disappearing in the middle of the night and being taken by members of the government, by armed individuals, the same things are happening today in this country, and it is terrifying,” said Isabel Sousa-Rodriguez, a Ph.D. student at the CUNY Graduate Center and former youth organizer with the Florida Immigrant Coalition. “And it is the reason why we stand up and fight, because we refuse to be dehumanized any longer.” We speak with Sousa-Rodriguez, who, in June 2010, was invited by President Obama to the White House to discuss immigration policy and prospects for immigration reform and refused to shake the president’s hand.

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Newly Discovered 1964 MLK Speech on Civil Rights, Segregation, Apartheid South Africa


Democracy Now!

Published on Jan 18, 2016

http://democracynow.org – In Part 1 of a Democracy Now! and Pacifica Radio Archives exclusive, we air a newly discovered recording of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. On December 7, 1964, days before he received the Nobel Peace Prize in Oslo, King gave a major address in London on segregation, the fight for civil rights and his support for Nelson Mandela and the anti-apartheid struggle in South Africa. The speech was recorded by Saul Bernstein, who was working as the European correspondent for Pacifica Radio. Bernstein’s recording was recently discovered by Brian DeShazor, director of the Pacifica Radio Archives.

Part 2

Part 3

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Last Hours


Green World Rising

Published on Sep 19, 2014

The film “Last Hours” is the 2nd film in the Green World Rising Series ( the first one is “Carbon” that is available on this channel). Last Hours describes a science-based climate scenario where a tipping point to runaway climate change is triggered by massive releases of frozen methane. Methane, a powerful greenhouse gas, has already started to percolate into the open seas and atmosphere from methane hydrate deposits beneath melting arctic ice, from the warming northern-hemisphere tundra, and from worldwide continental-shelf undersea methane pools.

Burning fossil fuels release carbon that, principally through greenhouse effect, heat the atmosphere and the seas. This is happening most rapidly at the polar extremes, and this heating has already begun the process of releasing methane. If we do not begin to significantly curtail the use of carbon-based fossil fuels, this freed methane threatens to radically accelerate the speed of global warming, potentially producing a disaster beyond the ability of the human species to adapt.

With this film, we hope to awaken people to the fact that the earth has experienced five major extinctions in the deep geologic past – times when more than half of all life on earth vanished – and that we are now entering a sixth extinction. Industrial civilization with its production of greenhouse gases has the potential to trigger a mass extinction on the order of those seen in the deep geological past. In the extreme, it could threaten not just human civilization, but the very existence of human life on this planet.

An asset for the climate change movement, “Last Hours” will be disseminated globally to help inform society about the dangers associated with climate change and to encourage the world community to chart a path forward that greatly reduces green house gas emissions. We encourage you to explore this website and the highlighted actions you can take to address climate change. We look forward to bringing you additional films about the challenges we face and the solutions that exist over the next few years, in the lead up to COP21, the 2015 UN Conference on Climate Change in Paris.

“Last Hours” is narrated by Leonardo DiCaprio, presented by Thom Hartmann and directed by Leila Conners. Executive Producers are George DiCaprio, Earl Katz and Roee Sharon Peled. Last Hours is produced by Mathew Schmid and was written by Thom Hartmann, Sam Sacks, and Leila Conners. Music is composed and performed by Francesco Lupica. Last Hours is brought to you by the Leonardo DiCaprio Foundation and produced by Tree Media.

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Carbon


Green World Rising

Published on Aug 20, 2014

CARBON is the first film in the Green World Rising Series. http://www.greenworldrising.org “Carbon” is narrated by Leonardo DiCaprio, presented by Thom Hartmann and directed by Leila Conners. Executive Producers are George DiCaprio, Earl Katz and Roee Sharon Peled. Carbon is produced by Mathew Schmid and was written by Thom Hartmann, Sam Sacks, Leila Conners and Mathew Schmid. Music is composed and performed by Jean-Pascal Beintus and intro drone by Francesco Lupica. Carbon is produced by Tree Media with the support of the Leonardo DiCaprio Foundation.

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What Did Exxon Know? – On The Media

Wednesday, November 11, 2015 – 02:14 PM

Bayway Refinery in Linden, New Jersey started by Standard Oil, later ExxonMobil, now run by Phillips 66. (Stephen Nessen/WNYC)

ExxonMobil is under investigation by the New York State Attorney General for potentially misleading shareholders about the threat of climate change. The subpoena comes after reports, including from InsideClimate News, about Exxon’s pivot from supporting state-of-the-art research to funding a network of climate denial groups.

Observers have noted that Exxon’s campaign of misinformation mirrors what Big Tobacco did about the risks of smoking. That industry is still paying a $246 billion settlement. Bob discusses the pattern, the two prosecutions, and what might come next with Naomi Oreskes of Harvard, co-author of Merchants of Doubt: How a Handful of Scientists Obscured the Truth on Issues from Tobacco Smoke to Global Warming.

Then, Bob revisits his conversation earlier this fall with ExxonMobil’s Richard Keil, who responded to the InsideClimate News reporting.

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Inside the Growing Right-Wing Campaign to Brainwash College Kids into Conservative Crusaders

Why baiting “politically correct” college students won’t save honorable conservatism or America. And what might.

By Jim Sleeper / AlterNet
January 15, 2016
Look who’s complaining

Something strange is happening at America’s colleges and universities. A movement is arising — undirected by students, professors or deans but scripted, funded and promoted by people off-campus — that blames liberals for trying to scrub campuses clean of words, ideas and subjects that might cause discomfort or give offense. Speech codes. Trigger warnings. Safe spaces. We’ve all read and heard disturbing accounts of such measures’ ubiquity and oppressiveness on campus after campus, their students depicted as demanding them en masse and administrators as rushing to establish them.

I don’t expect these alarms to stop being sounded, or students to stop demonstrating, once the new semester is underway. But this is the time to consider what’s really driving not only the students, but the strong and largely successful campaign to condemn them.

…(read more).

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Dark Money review: Nazi oil, the Koch brothers and a rightwing revolution

David Koch listens to speakers at the Defending the American Dream Summit, in Washington DC in November 2011. Photograph: Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images

Charles Kaiser

Sunday 17 January 2016 07.00 EST Last modified on Sunday 17 January 2016 19.02 EST

Lots of American industrialists have skeletons in the family closet. Charles and David Koch, however, are in a league of their own.

The father of these famous rightwing billionaires was Fred Koch, who started his fortune with $500,000 received from Stalin for his assistance constructing 15 oil refineries in the Soviet Union in the 1930s. A couple of years later, his company, Winkler-Koch, helped the Nazis complete their third-largest oil refinery. The facility produced hundreds of thousands of gallons of high-octane fuel for the Luftwaffe, until it was destroyed by Allied bombs in 1944.

In 1938, the patriarch wrote that “the only sound countries in the world are Germany, Italy and Japan”. To make sure his children got the right ideas, he hired a German nanny. The nanny was such a fervent Nazi that when France fell in 1940, she resigned and returned to Germany. After that, Fred became the main disciplinarian, whipping his children with belts and tree branches.

These are just a handful of the many bombshells exploded in the pages of Dark Money, Jane Mayer’s indispensable new history “of the billionaires behind the rise of the radical right” in the US.

A veteran investigative reporter and a staff writer for the New Yorker, Mayer has combined her own research with the work of scores of other investigators, to describe how the Kochs and fellow billionaires like Richard Scaife have spent hundreds of millions to “move their political ideas from the fringe to the center of American political life”.

Twenty years after collaborating with the Nazis, Fred Koch had lost none of his taste for extremism. In 1958, he was one of the 11 original members of the John Birch Society, an organization which accused scores of prominent Americans, including President Dwight Eisenhower, of communist sympathies.

…(read more).

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Jason ocean height mission blasts off – BBC News

By Jonathan Amos BBC Science Correspondent
17 January 2016

A US-European satellite that is fundamental to our understanding of the oceans has launched from California.

Jason-3 will measure the shape of the global sea surface to an accuracy of better than 4cm.

It will track currents, tides, winds, wave heights, and will help forecast the intensity of storms.

But the new mission will also maintain the reference data-set on sea-level rise. This shows the world’s oceans to be rising at more than 3mm per year.

Jason-3 was launched atop a SpaceX Falcon-9 rocket from Vandenberg Air Force base at 10:42 local time (18:42 GMT). The flight to orbit took just under the hour.

An attempt by SpaceX to recover the bottom part of the Falcon by landing it back on a sea barge came very close to success. The booster found the platform but could not remain upright because a landing leg failed to lock. As a result, it toppled over and exploded.

…(read more).

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