The infrastructure and budget reconciliation bills moving through Congress are a mixed bag when it comes to health care, income support programs, and the care economy.
On climate and environmental issues, however, they are not just inadequate but disastrous. They represent, at best, a huge lost opportunity to tackle the climate crisis at the required scale nationally.
One rogue legislator, Joe Manchin (D‑W.V.), who has deep fossil fuel industry ties and is himself a coal baron, is hell-bent on preserving fossil fuel subsidies and gutting the proposed Clean Electricity Payments Program. That program was flawed to begin with, but thanks to Manchin’s intervention, fossil fueled power plants could end up getting handouts that were supposed to subsidize clean energy.
Not only is there no assurance that the proposed laws will eliminate existing fossil fuel subsidies, but they actually introduce new subsidies for fossil fuels by supporting fictional technologies like carbon capture and “clean” hydrogen.
The bipartisan bill also weakens the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA), one of the few legal tools available to communities to fight environmentally destructive projects. And it continues the harmful U.S. tradition of overfunding highways and underfunding public transportation.
Critique isn’t enough, though. As a climate justice movement, we need to articulate clear alternatives, even if they’re pronounced “politically infeasible” by insiders. Political feasibility is not an immutable law of nature — it can be transformed by visionary movement-building and organizing.
The first step is actually making the demand. So here’s an overview of what the climate legislation we actually need could look like, drawn from existing movement demands.
We don't have time for this nonsense. We either fix the planet now or admit we're failures.
"Iraq snapshot" (THE COMMON ILLS):
Wednesday, October 27, 2021. We largely focus on a YOUTUBE segment.
Starting in Iraq, REUTERS reports, "Islamic State militants killed 11 people including a woman on Tuesday in an attack on a village in Diyala province, east of Iraq, the country's Joint Operations Command said in a statement." Is it ISIS? It may be. ISIS has never been vanquished. And the reasons ISIS took root in Iraq were never addressed. If the issues continue to go unaddressed, ISIS will actually grow stronger. AFP notes, "The attack on Al-Rashad in Diyala province left "11 dead and 13 wounded", a local security source said." In a Tweet, Barham Salih, president of Iraq, states this was a cowardly attack He calls for stronger borders and backing of the security forces.
He's an idiot. That has nothing to do with the attack. He's an idiot who needs to be out of office.
He is a member of the PUK. Once upon a time, the PUK was one of the two dominant parties in Iraq. Due to Jalal Talabani and his family's numerous betrayals, the PUK fell out of favor. The KDP, the party of Massoud Barzania, is the dominant party in the Kurdistan at present. In fact, it's the dominant political party in Iraq. No other political party earned as many seats in Parliament as the KDP did this month.
By custom, the post of president has gone to the Kurds. But Salih is now a member of a minority party.. The Kuridstan has many, many minority parties and there's nothing that makes the PUK 'better' than the others. Salih does not deserve the post on political grounds. But in addition to that, he clearly doesn't understand a damn thing.
Salih needs to go.
Let's step back from Iraq for a moment to note Sabby Sabs.
Sabby says, "Where is Noam Chomsky? Who is the real Noam Chomsky? [. . .] I don't know who this guy is."
Sabby, sorry, that's Noam Chomsky. I've known him for decades and this is the real Noam.
He really gave himself away in 2008 but there were too many in the Cult of St Barack who refused to grasp reality.
He's a fake ass and he always has been. He's got links that he never wants to talk about. And don't blame this on his wife passing away, that was years ago.
The only "thing" that "has happened here" is that Noam is too stupid to put up the small pretense he used to.
Here's reality, his life's work is a joke. And is useless. He has one classic and that's MANUFACTURING CONSENT. When did he team up with Edward S. Herman ever again?
You cowrite a classic, why don't you reteam?
Because Ed stayed true. His writing that followed that publication continued to address these and other serious issues and that harmed him in term of 'brand recognition.' There was no huge rush to interview Ed. It wasn't, let's bring Ed on DEMOCRACY NOW! Ed did real work and was shut out for the most part, THIRD WORLD TRAVELER and ZNET were two of the outlets that published his work.
Ed called out Samantha Power as the war monger she is. I know because I was calling that piece of trash out as well. It was 2007 and the Davey D's of this world, the John Nichols were turning Samantha Power into a saint. She's trash. She's war hungry trash. Noam didn't call her out. Ed did.
Noam's work has been useless.
Detached observations tossed out in this book only to be forgotten one year later.
Iraq is a failed state? Yes, Noam it is a failed state. But you don't declare that in a book in 2006 and then spend all these years that follow focusing on everything else.
This is the same person, Sabby.
Noam's role has always been to distract and he's been rewarded for that.
Noam lies for politicians and that's why he is interviewed and known. Ed told the truth and that's why many reading this are wondering: Who is Edward S. Herman.
Noam takes care of Noam and always has.
You're wasting your time expecting more from Noam. You should be thankful that he's showing who he really is. It's a shame it took you so long to catch on. Where were you when, just last year, Noam was telling Palestinian activists that they could best help Palestine by . . . voting for Joe Biden.
Noam has never been about empowerment. He's a dirty joke and now he's a dirty old joke. And if you think this is mean, Noam knows what I think of him and he knows he needs to get honest. I've noted that to his face. He's lied to people for years.
He doesn't want to help people and he has no leadership skills to offer.
We need real leaders.
This is a scary time. The pandemic continues. The fear is being used to divide the nation. Who we are supposed to be and who we are right now? They're lands apart. I have not slammed Eric Clapton for putting his money wherever he wants. And I think, in forty years, Eric Clapton will come out a lot better than most people.
We're letting fear control us and divide us.
I got the vaccine. I support the vaccine. I do not attack people who did not get it or who question getting it. I understand the fear and, believe me, politicians like Joe Biden understand that fear as well and use it.
What Joe's doing is outrageous and unconstitutional. He may get away with it while he's in the White House but history will remember him as someone who provided no leadership and who divided the country and did his best to turn one group against another.
And let's be really clear, if vaccines matter -- and I believe that they do -- then other things do as well including debt relief, including stimulus checks, including a UBI. It's funny how no American needs help according to Joe and his policies but they all need vaccinations.
The pandemic continues. And Joe wants to scare the country and demonize a large group of Americans. But he doesn't want to provide assistance to We The People. Gas prices are up, food prices are up, rent is going up and Joe is failing. Over and over and over.
It's a good thing he's able to harness fear against the American people because otherwise he would be even lower in the polls right now.
When I say some idiot on their high horse -- an Alyssa Milano -- I'm seeing someone ruled by fear. I acknowledge fear is out there, I acknowledge that the government is using it. But I don't let fear rule me.
I really loathe Alyssa and she's a damn liar in her book. Especially when she pretends about Shannen. It's cute, isn't it, how she leaves out her rage over a certain actor choosing Shannen in real life and not Alyssa who'd been coming on to him repeatedly. It's real cute all the lies she tells. But let's move back a moment.
She attacked Jason Aldean's family. Children are supposed to be off limits. But Alyssa put them on blast. I loathe Alyssa but I've never put her children on blast. She's allowed her fear and hatred to make her into the trash she is. She was never a good person to begin with. (They loathed her on MELROSE. And for good reason.)
I am listening to Sabby while on the stepper. We posted it last night, I don't stream everything that goes up here. We need to note a few things.
Sabby's glorification of Eminem is hilarious and a misreading of the dominant culture. Eminem was rewarded for homophboia. And "I hear you" is not what a performance with Elton John is. A performance with Elton is an attempt to get attention and press. You don't know what you're talking about Sabby. Eminem was a White-fueled phenomenon. And his homophobia was rank and disgusting. It was called out in real time but not by many. And he didn't suffer despite your claims otherwise. Like Guns and Roses, Eminem's homophobia made him only more "bro" and gave him "cred."
Dave Chapelle? I like Dave and I know Dave. He has a good heart. He's also said some things that are offensive. He can do that. And people can respond to that. That's what's going on.
And he hasn't been 'cancelled' despite what he says. I don't care about his 'documentary' or whatever it is. He made a lot of people upset. Film festivals are trying to come back. I do not blame anyone from walking away from his film. It's a sad industry right now. I think film festivals would be better off exhibiting the film. I think they'd be surprised by how many would check Dave's film out.
No, Sabby, Dave's Comedy Central show was not the most popular show -- or one of them -- when it was aired. I really wish you would educate yourself or just close your mouth. There are measurements -- we do know how many people watched on a broadcast network. If we can't do facts, we can't be part of an honest discussion. You're mistaking what happened in your small circle for a universal experience. It's not.
By all means, speak for yourself but stop adding these details where you lie because that's what it is. Dave had a basic cable show. That's all he had.
I'm really angry now and I let it rip when I am so let me also be clear, Sabby, stop being Lena Dunham.
Remember, GIRLS couldn't have an African-American regular because Lena 'couldn't write' that. That's a lot like Sabby trying to have an out by saying she doesn't know the LGBTQ experience.
That's a f**king piece of s**t.
"People get upset. People get offended. Maybe the response should be to educate them." WTF?
That's a direct quote. Maybe educate yourself. And maybe you should get cancelled if you can't deal in honesty.
I have not called for Dave to be cancelled and wouldn't make that call. I do think Dave needs to see this response and "Dave makes fun of everybody" is not a valid response -- but it is a quote from Sabby on the show. I have stopped it. I can't listen to her anymore on this topic.
She doesn't know what she's talking about.
She doesn't know who Don Imus was. He was not part of the NBA. I just can't. Don't talk about things you don't know about and, sadly, Sabby, that's all of entertainment.
You don't get how offensive it is. You're part of the problem, Sabby. That doesn't mean we're cancelling you. It does mean if I know a video has you gabbing on about entertainment I'm probably not posting it here because you don't know a damn thing about that topic.
At one point, while insisting Em's all our friend and lamenting Andrew Dice Clay and other b.s. she wants to know "What changed?"
You know what, Sabby, if Diana Ross had been that way in the sixties, England would probably still be putting White people before the royal family in blackface. It was insulting and it shouldn't have happened and it certainly shouldn't have happened in the late sixties. It took Diana Ross calling it out to get it stopped. And she got blowback for it but she changed things. (I love Diana and she's a friend. She's done more to foster change than most people know of.)
I'm sorry, Sabby, is AMOS & ANDY going to get someone killed? We moved beyond that as a society. And we did so because it was hurtful and it was dishonest.
You say you don't know the trans experience, then just shut up.
Ava and I were asked to write about Dave by Jim for THIRD and I refused. I didn't want Ava's name on it because I didn't want Ava to have to deal with any backlash. Because I'm not going to slam Dave. He is a friend. He is well intentioned. Equally true "Dave" is a persona for his stage career. And this is very complicated topic.
But I also wasn't going to slam anyone in the transgender community or attempt to tell them don't cancel, don't do this.
This is their damn lives.
At the end of the day, all this is for Dave is a joke. This is the transgender community's lives. I don't get how you can't get that Sabby or grasp how awful you sounded in the segment on Dave.
"What changed?" she basically huffs at one point.
What changed is society evolved. That's what we do. We progress, we evolve.
And you may have been okay with Eminem's homophobia but I never was nor did I ever applaud Axel Rose and his homophobia, his use of the n-word, his violence towards women . . .
I never called for him to be banned. I never burned his CDs (I never bought his music to begin with and when David Geffen sent me that EP to try to change my mind about the band, I tossed it into the trash without listening -- I'd already seen the lyrics to "One In A Million.")
You're coming into the struggle for equality very late and you don't know a damn thing. You need to educate yourself or avoid these kind of topics. You clearly do not grasp the need for change and growth. Or it's need in the past. If you had your show in 1952, would you have been justifying school segregation? I don't know where it ends because to me, the struggle for equality is a struggle for all of us. I think you may be playing into the same fear Dave sports in his special -- that progress for one group harms another. No, all boats can be lifted.
And trans people have enough to suffer through in life with people trying to intentionally be mean without you trying to be 'helpful' and saying some of the offensive things you've said.
I'm not calling for anyone to be cancelled. That's Dave, that's the people who are protesting his special -- which is more than just the transgender community.
Dave needs to listen to this. He needs to hear the hurt. He caused that. He didn't mean to. He thought everyone was going to enjoy it. As a straight woman, Sabby enjoyed it and couldn't relate to how anyone could be harmed. (Sabby, needs to take a look at herself.) He didn't set out to harm. He didn't set out to hurt.
But he's a communicator and if he wants a career on stage in the public eye, he's going to have to adjust. That's true if he did nothing political. If he just did yada yada jokes, he'd still have to adjust and change with the times. Look at Frank Sinatra in the 60s. He had to update his image.
You don't get to be the same person you were and have an audience for years and years. It really doesn't work that way. If you have shown everything you will ever have to offer today, then people will move away from you. That's the reality of celebrity.
So Dave has to change period. All entertainers do or they have no career.
But Dave needs to listen. And it's painful, I know and my heart goes out to him on that because I know he didn't mean to hurt. He thought he was being outrageous and everyone was going to laugh together.
But that's not what's happening. You've got Sabby deciding to weigh in to . . . support Dave. She's not weighed in on it before. And, certainly, her politics are supposed to be rooted in the people -- not top down. But watch her go reactionary.
Dave hurt people. Didn't mean to. He needs to listen and he needs to reflect. He needs to grow. Or he needs to be off the stage. And that's not 'cancel Dave!' That's the life cycle of celebrity.
The transgender community deserves support. They are the ones wronged in this. And don't give me that 'it's just words.' This is their life. That is what is at stake. It's what always at stake, whether it's the battle for this cause, the Civil Rights Movement, the women's liberation movement (which was always about many things including the way we view rape and domestic terrorism in the home), the Civil Rights Movement.
Dave can say whatever he wants and I'm not going to hate him for it. I know him and I like Dave. But this a public square that he works in and if he says something that offends, people have a right to push back.
And excuse me, Sabby, but these people pushing back, they're doing so without a platform. NETFLIX hasn't seen fit to give voice to them. You've yet to do a special on them. You've yet to take up their cause. But you're offended that Dave's film isn't getting a distributor and so you've taken to the podium for Dave's defense.
Your loyalties are misplaced and your knowledge base is woefully weak.
For the record, I wasn't planning to call Sabby out in this snapshot. I thought I'd just add some to Noam. I wish I'd stop streaming after she was done with Noam.
The transgender community should not be thrown under the bus. They are reacting to what were hurtful insults. And if Dave can't grasp that, then he's not the Dave I know. But I also grasp that he feels under siege and I get that as well. But he needs to reflect on what's going on. Not to silence himself but to learn from it.
He can say whatever he wants. Anyone can. Sabby did. And I called her out. That's how it works in the public square.
And I'm not calling for her to be cancelled and have already noted that we will continue to post her videos (unless I know she's talking about entertainment and then I may listen first to see how off base she is -- on entertainment, she's offbase for not knowing her facts re: Eminem, Don Imus, how TV viewership ratings work, etc.).
I didn't plan on weighing in on this. We've posted videos from all sides regarding Dave's latest special. I love Dave and don't believe he meant harm. But that's not me trying to do an end run around this conversation and stop it. This conversation needs to take place and I fully support the right of those who actually live the transgendered experience to have this conversation, to have it publicly and to be heard.
If you're not aware of the violence -- all over the world but in the US as well -- aimed at the transgender community, then you need to educate yourself. This is a very serious issue. A real conversation needs to take place. That means going beyond "I'm a fan-boy/girl for Dave so . . ."
Dave is the least of the issues in this conversation. We need to educate ourselves and we need to listen and we need to be sure that the microphone is in front of those who are being harmed. That should be basic and not in dispute.
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