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Author Topic: Profiles in Courage  (Read 15342 times)

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AGelbert

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The Real News’ Marc Steiner Remembers Rep. Elijah Cummings ✨
October 17, 2019

Cummings was a civil rights leader, a political powerhouse, and, most recently, an outspoken opponent of President Donald Trump.


Story Transcript

LISA SNOWDEN-MCCRAY: I’m Lisa Snowden McCray. Welcome to The Real News.

United States Representative Elijah Cummings died early Thursday morning at a Maryland hospice due to health complications. Cummings was a political powerhouse in Maryland and especially in Baltimore, the city he represented since 1996. As the Chairman of the House Oversight and Reform Committee, he was an outspoken foe of President Donald Trump. His wife Maya Rockeymoore Cummings, who serves as Chair of the Maryland Democratic party, said Cummings worked until his last breath. He was 68 years old.

Now Marc, you have a long history here in Baltimore. And we were talking a little bit before we started the cameras that you and Elijah Cummings actually kind of knew each other before you knew that you knew each other.

MARC STEINER: We think so anyway.

LISA SNOWDEN-MCCRAY: Can you talk a little bit about that?

MARC STEINER: Yeah. So it was 1962. Elijah is five years younger than me. And he was one of these young kids who were trying to integrate Riverside Pool, which is in South Baltimore, which is a really overtly racist white neighborhood. And so they chased them away; went after him. And I was part of the civic interest group which was the local arm of SNCC here in Baltimore. I was 16 then. And we went down to demonstrate and protect the kids and walked him to the pool. And so our joke between us sometimes is, “We must’ve met back then and didn’t even know it,” because he was just a little kid. He’s five years younger. I’m 16, that means he was 11 or something. So we always thought that’s where we met. We really met years later. We became to be really friendly back in the early ’80s.

LISA SNOWDEN-MCCRAY: Okay. And what was that like?

MARC STEINER: Well, he was in the House of Delegates. I was running Billy Murphy’s campaign for Mayor back in 1983. And that’s my first real remembrance of intense conversations with Elijah at that point when we were running–actually the second time–a major black candidate for Mayor of Baltimore.

LISA SNOWDEN-MCCRAY: That story about him kind of integrating that pool in Baltimore shows how deeply entrenched Cummings was in the city.

MARC STEINER: He’s 11, right.

LISA SNOWDEN-MCCRAY: So what does his loss mean? We’ll kind of start small and go big. What does it lost mean here in Baltimore? What kind of space does he leave to be filled here?

MARC STEINER: Well, Elijah was… Whether you agreed with everything he did or not, Elijah was a deeply spiritual force, and he was a good human being in his heart and soul. So it wasn’t just me. If I texted him, he would text back. But I hear from lots of people who didn’t know him as well as I did, and he would do the same thing. He was just always in touch with the community; never left living in the community, he always stayed in the community. He was just dedicated to that. And so that’s a real rarity. And he filled some shoes. I mean, this is a seat that was created in some sense and won by Parren Mitchell and then Kweisi Mfume, and then Elijah Cummings, so you know that’s a legacy of that seat.

And to me, he reaches back even to Parren who had a real radical vision for the future, and Elijah did too. I mean, he was caught in the establishment a lot and stuff. He’s a Democratic leader. But he had a real passion for the people and for the human rights and civil rights and ending poverty and fighting racism, and it was in his heart and soul. And he also knew how to do–despite that stuff in taking on Donald Trump and stuff–he knew how to cross the aisle when he needed to get something done. He was a very honest and special human being, no matter… Yeah, he just was.

LISA SNOWDEN-MCCRAY: Let’s talk a little bit about what he did on national stage, but I think he was influential here in Baltimore and then kind of the voice that he was, the role that he played on a national stage I think people were really looking to him. People especially Real New viewers, people here in Baltimore, were looking at him as kind of a solution to the mess that we’re kind of in with Donald Trump. So can you talk a little bit about the role that he occupied on a national stage and kind of some of the work that he did maybe even before Trump came into office?

MARC STEINER: Oh, yeah. He built himself into a Democratic powerhouse. Everybody knows the name John Lewis because John Lewis is John Lewis from SNCC. And so he had a reputation from Alabama and Selma and the rest. Elijah was only second to that in terms of notoriety inside the House; people respected him. He fought hard for bills, for economic justice. He fought hard around every racial issue in and then giving power to black men and women in Congress and lifting people up with him, and so then he became Chairman of the Oversight Committee. And in that role, he really proved himself. He took no prisoners.

When you saw him ask questions, when you saw him interrogate people–especially from the right–he just went after them and would not let go. And he tried to get to the truth. And in this process of impeachment, he became one of the political and moral leaders in the battle for impeachment eventually. I mean, he did wait for some of the Democratic leadership to come around and then he did it. But he became one of the ones who really pushed the issues with Trump. And so he always played that force as a kind of a progressive voice. Some people may argue, “Was he really a progressive voice?” I think he was.

LISA SNOWDEN-MCCRAY: I remember… I want to say it was AOC who said that he was very welcoming. Well, he first wanted to make sure that she kind of knew her stuff and then was very welcoming with her to Washington. She’s been her own very polarizing figure. So what’s next? Does anyone know kind of what the steps are to begin thinking about who can fill his gigantic shoes?

MARC STEINER: Yes. So A) let me just say that what you mentioned with AOC and Elijah that is Elijah Cummings would embrace the young people, especially young people of color and black women who came to Congress. And he would just really push them and welcome them into this space. I’m not surprised. I didn’t know that story; I should know it. I don’t know it, but I’m not surprised at the story about Elijah and AOC, I’m just not surprised at all. That is him. So what happens now? From what I understand they’re going to have a special election. The governor has to call it–I think I’m right about this–the governor has to call it. He hasn’t set a date. And then, you know the city, it’s going to be a free for all; it’s going to be a scramble. I wouldn’t be surprised if his widow, Maya Cummings, runs for that seat.

LISA SNOWDEN-MCCRAY: Oh, really an accomplished politician in her own right.

MARC STEINER: She’s Chairman of the State Democratic Party. But then you’ve got all these other people. You’ve got the most views who probably want to run. You’ve got the state senators, all of whom may run for his seat. Like Jill Carter I’m sure is considering running for the seat, I would imagine. And Mary Washington’s probably considered running for his seat. There’re numbers of people who were thinking about this. This doesn’t open up much…. Congressional seats do not open up. And the history of this state and the country is that when you’re in Congress, you get voted in election after election after election. And so when it opens up, it becomes a free for all. This is everybody’s chance to go to Congress.

LISA SNOWDEN-MCCRAY: So I feel like our job as journalists and the jobs of people here in Baltimore are going to be: how do we make the right decision? How do we kind of keep on the right track? I think.

MARC STEINER: We have a lot. We have to ask really tough questions for everybody who’s running and really push it and let the people know where these people stand, how these people stand, how effective they can be in the halls of Congress, and how they would fight for us or not fight for us. I live in his district. I know where you live; you live in this district too.

LISA SNOWDEN-MCCRAY: Yeah.

MARC STEINER: But his district, you see, is interesting. Because the bottom line is, I consider Baltimore, Maryland one of the gerrymandering capitals of the country.

LISA SNOWDEN-MCCRAY: Yes, it is.

MARC STEINER: And his district is ridiculous. I mean, it’s this huge piece of Howard County and Baltimore City where a lot of black folks live, and it snakes up in this little thin line and goes to Baltimore County in this really white conservative district. And so the danger here would be if somebody conservative and white is going to try to run up the middle and win the election. That’s not impossible. And so people have to be very vigilant about what happens; to look for an even more progressive voice to take Elijah Cummings place in Congress. And so it’s going to be a free for all battle. It’s going to be a short, quick fight and that person getting elected will be probably hard to unseat.

LISA SNOWDEN-MCCRAY: All right. Thank you so much for talking.

MARC STEINER: Oh, it’s my pleasure. I just want to say one last quick thing.

LISA SNOWDEN-MCCRAY: Yes.

MARC STEINER: And that’s just my heart goes out to his wife and his kids and the people who loved him and were around him. None of us knew he was this sick. Nobody knew he was this sick. I mean, I thought… We thought he was getting better and he was going for treatments. We thought he was out because he wasn’t feeling well. And this was such a total shock to all of us who knew and loved him. And that goes beyond whatever my agreements or disagreements we might’ve had in life or in politics. He was just a generally decent, powerful, lovely human being. And he’s gone and it’s a shock and a shame, and so my heart is with the family.

LISA SNOWDEN-MCCRAY: Thank you very much for joining me today, Marc.

MARC STEINER: It’s my pleasure.

LISA SNOWDEN-MCCRAY: I am Lisa Snowden McCray, and you’ve been watching The Real News Network.

https://therealnews.com/stories/marc-steiner-remembers-elijah-cummings
Rob not the poor, because he is poor: neither oppress the afflicted in the gate:
For the Lord will plead their cause, and spoil the soul of those that spoiled them. Pr. 22:22-23

AGelbert

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Elijah Cummings 🦅 Remembered: Great American Statesmen ✨
1,369 views•Oct 17, 2019


Thom Hartmann Program
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Joe Madison joins Thom Hartmann to celebrate and remember the late Rep. Elijah Cummings who passed away October 17th.

Tell us one about your memories with Elijah Cummings in the comments below.

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Rob not the poor, because he is poor: neither oppress the afflicted in the gate:
For the Lord will plead their cause, and spoil the soul of those that spoiled them. Pr. 22:22-23

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Renata Ávila: “The Internet of creation disappeared. Now we have the Internet of surveillance and control”
An interview with this specialist in human rights, technology and freedom of expression to discuss how today’s societies are advancing to the drumbeat of “digital colonialism”.


Karma Peiró
01 OCTOBER 2019

https://youtu.be/QgqHiT-ydUU

Three decades ago, the Internet promised to be a democratising place to be turned to in the flight from the inequalities of the analogue world. It was presented to us a field in which to find freedoms, boundless creation, communication that transcended frontiers and free education for all. “We were promised an open Internet – and it was a trap”, says Renata Ávila, annoyed. “We believed that we were building something collective, but we ended up being the unsalaried slaves of the new digital world”. We take advantage of the awarding of the CCCB III Cultural Innovation International Prize, to talk with one of the most influential and lucid voices in the world of technology and human rights.

A booby-trapped connection for the poor

The Internet Report Health 2019 offers us a reminder that half of the world is already connected to the Internet. Which means over 4 billion people. But we could also turn that on its head and think that – three decades following the creation of the Internet – only half of the world is connected. What happens to all the people who are unconnected? How do they relate with each other, communicate, work or entertain themselves? “The people deciding for what purpose those without access to the Internet are going to connect to it are the technology companies that dominate the future of industry. And these companies only represent the hyperconnected 1%”, explains Renata Ávila.

Each of the answers in her discourse – laboriously and firmly constructed – unravels a complex web of connections that explain why, today, we live with the same or more inequalities than in the past, even though we were promised that the Internet was going to change everything. Apparently happy but more controlled than ever before. We know this and yet we ignore it, because we don’t want to lose our portion of fame, of ego, of being famous, of being communicated or saving time, even if we then squander it on worthless rubbish.

This lawyer and activist talks with a global perspective about the movements that the power of “digital colonialism” is weaving. Her arguments are essential for preventing ourselves from being crushed by the technological world, from being carried away by the current of ephemeral divertemento. For being fully aware that, as individuals, our battle is not lost, but that we can control the use of our data, refuse to give away our facial recognition or demand that the privacy laws that protect us are obeyed.

Before the imminent transition to 5G ­– all of us connected to all the objects that surround us – Renata Ávila strips us of our veil of naivety and insists that the Internet is now never going to be the Internet that we dreamed of. Now we are inside the Internet of surveillance, of control and of measurement. “It may be that factory workers in Bangladesh do not have access to the Internet, but they are connected to objects that are watching them all the time. They monitor their work, check they are not distracted, that they aren’t chatting with their workmates. And what those cameras see is going to determine their wage packets. The connectivity that is offered today to poor people is the connectivity of control and of chains”.

“If I were president…”

The priority themes that the Internet Health Report has highlighted for this year are five: privacy and security, decentralisation, digital inclusion, openness and digital literacy. But if we are going to prioritise, which of them is most urgent? “None of them can be dismissed”, answers this activist with cross-cutting ideas. And to explain it she proclaims herself imaginary president of three countries. “If I were president of country A – which concentrates all the most powerful technology companies on the planet – my decision would be to back decentralisation. Because if I do not fragment these companies that have so much control and power, by using good laws of competition, I am feeding a monster that is literally going to swallow me up and I am not going to be able to govern”. This example takes us to the USA.

And she continues. “If I were president of country B – which produces a certain technology and I have my population connected, but my citizens consume everything from country A, while the latter steals their data, gives them an insecure infrastructure and violates their fundamental rights as citizens – my concern would be security and privacy”. And, again, we can see an analogy with this hyperconnected Europe and Silicon Valley.

“However, if I were the president of country C – where I have almost nobody connected, I do not produce industry, I am consuming the cheapest and least prepared services of the type A country – what do I do? Do I connect them to a free centralised system in exchange for giving away all the data of my citizens? They have not even developed digital literacy skills. Where do I begin? Do I take them to a new phase of dependency, of colonisation?” The answers are not easy, Renata Ávila points out. “We should pressure type B countries to offer alternatives to the poorest countries and revert the current situation. We can only thus achieve a balanced system”, she answers as a possible recipe.

The surveillance empires

International lawyer Renata Ávila defends at all costs technology as a tool for empowering citizens and achieving true transparency of governments and multinationals. This is precisely the objective of the Fundación Ciudadanía Inteligente, (Smart Citizens Foundation), of which she has been executive director since 2018.

The combination of power – explains Ávila – with a highly sophisticated degree of technological development and a strong market push are making it easier for the USA and China to enter poor countries, to exploit them and to control them, these days technologically. Faced with the question of whether there is any escape from the desolate and manipulated landscape that she is sketching, the lawyer shrugs and answers: “The only hope to redefine this technological imperialism is for Europe to take on the leadership role that is its duty. For it to offer alternatives that respect human rights and alternative business models that are not based on data extractivism. This will not be competitive in the market but it could come from governments, putting social interests at the centre”.

Digital colonialism

A few companies concentrate a lot of power, and the worst thing, Ávila affirms – is that they control the thinking of entire collectives. Welcome to “digital colonialism”. Trump, Brexit, Bolsonaro and Johnson are all examples of this domination. But so too are the American GAFAM (Google, Amazon, Facebook, Apple and Microsoft) and the Chinese BATX (Baidu, Alibaba, Tencent, Xiaomi) empires.

“At the start of the 21st century, one of the questions that excited me most about access to the Internet was the possibility of producing infinite copies of books and sharing knowledge. That idea of an Internet that was going to be a tool for integration and access to knowledge has shattered into smithereens. It was a booby trap. We are working as the unpaid slaves of the new digital world. I feel that it’s like when the Spanish colonisers reached Latin America. We believed the story of ‘a new world’. And we were in a box, controlled by the most powerful country in the world. We should have regulated a long time before. And we should have said: ‘I will share my photo, but how are you benefitting and how am I?’ Because what we are doing today is work for free; with our time, creativity and energy we are paying these empires. We are giving them everything”.

And she rounds off her speech by ensuring that not only are our lands at their mercy, like in the past, but the most private, most vulnerable part of each of us. “We are totally predictable and controllable. And that means easily manipulated. This really worries me”.

A control that is exercised, undoubtedly, through the algorithms implemented in our mobile apps, in public services, in the companies that sell us products. Algorithms that take decisions automatically, that influence our most everyday actions, but that we are unaware of because of the opacity operating around us. Because we don’t make the effort to learn. Because we don’t want to know.

“I am on the advisory council of an initiative of the InterAmerican Development Bank to conduct pilots of ten artificial intelligence applications in the public sector. Our first fight is that all of them must be transparent and auditable”, she explains to me with hope. “Let’s start there, because we can’t attack the private sector”.

Precarity sold as an opportunity

We move into the field of ethics and ask Renata Ávila about three concepts that have modified their meaning in the last decade, precisely due to the acceleration with which we have adopted technology. They are trust, privacy and transparency and how these influence the new generations. We cannot divorce these three questions from the concepts of austerity, precarity and the institutional corruption crisis”, she argues. “Letting strangers into your home to spend the night, is that an excess of trust or the need to seek resources?”.

For this activist, the intense precarisation of employment, the lack of opportunities for young people, the betrayal by governments that opte to bail out the failed banks following the economic crisis rather than concerning themselves with the future of their citizens, has led people to find other resources. “How many Über drivers have I found that had two university degrees? The failure is very much a systemic one”.

“We are immersed in two extremely important crises, of which we do not want to take the slightest bit of notice, but one day they are going to explode and we are going to realise”, comments Renata Ávila. It cannot be overlooked that so much technology must inevitably take its toll on the environment. An environmental crisis, but also a technological one. We cannot decelerate the current pace, and much less return to a past where connections were only face to face. So, what is to be done? She has a formula, which is perhaps not “magic” but could give a result: changing the logics with which we function. And it consists precisely of trusting in technological innovation in order to harm the planet less. “Leave behind the years of programmed obsolescence, the data extractivism model, store less on giant servers that need monumental refrigeration systems, etc”.

An optimistic message for the present

After all that has been discussed, some might think that this Guatemalan activist is so realistic that she leaves no room for optimism. But Renata Ávila does not like being negative and she is convinced that the human race is capable of finding resources to emerge from any “mess”, even at the most critical moments. “We have a perfect cocktail” – she says with a half-smile of worry. “A democratic crisis caused by some terrible leaders in power, with a climate-change and technological crisis. This can only lead to a collective reflection and make us reconsider on what planet we want to live in the future”.


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Rob not the poor, because he is poor: neither oppress the afflicted in the gate:
For the Lord will plead their cause, and spoil the soul of those that spoiled them. Pr. 22:22-23

AGelbert

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Re: Profiles in Courage
« Reply #229 on: November 27, 2019, 01:27:35 pm »
A picture of Rupert Read from October's International Rebellion in London.

November 27, 2019 

SNIPPET:

While I have been enjoying my academic work and writing recently, I am currently on strike with University and College Union over pensions, pay and working conditions. We should all be concerned about the increasing corporatisation of the higher education sector and the reliance on the badly paid labour of new precarious academics. Around 50% of University staff are not on permanent contracts any more, and this number is only increasing. I worry about the future for my excellent PhD students in this increasingly unfair and ferocious job market.

Full Newsletter:






Rob not the poor, because he is poor: neither oppress the afflicted in the gate:
For the Lord will plead their cause, and spoil the soul of those that spoiled them. Pr. 22:22-23

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Victor Rivera

WHY I'M WORKING TO ENSURE THAT MY COMMUNITY IS FULLY COUNTED IN THE 2020 CENSUS

By: Chispa Organizer Victor Rivera 👍

"Federal funding for critical environmental and public health programs is determined based on the number of people that live in a particular area. Communities like mine that are on the frontlines of pollution and climate change need everyone to be counted in the census so we can have the resources we need to protect our health and environment."

Full article
Rob not the poor, because he is poor: neither oppress the afflicted in the gate:
For the Lord will plead their cause, and spoil the soul of those that spoiled them. Pr. 22:22-23

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BLACK BEAR NEWS: More than 800,000 people march against Macron as strikes grip France
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Rob not the poor, because he is poor: neither oppress the afflicted in the gate:
For the Lord will plead their cause, and spoil the soul of those that spoiled them. Pr. 22:22-23

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I Was the Child Laborer Who Made the Clothes on Your Back (w/ Nasreen Sheikh)
611 views•Dec 17, 2019


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Overseas child labor produces almost $3 trillion of products for the US. Nasreen Sheikh was nine years old when she ran away from her home in Nepal, to avid an early arranged marriage.

Her experience in Katmandu earning $2 for a 12 hour day, p=made her want to out things right.

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Rob not the poor, because he is poor: neither oppress the afflicted in the gate:
For the Lord will plead their cause, and spoil the soul of those that spoiled them. Pr. 22:22-23

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Year in Climate Crisis: Fossil Fuels Expansion 🤬, Scary Science and Global Activism

December 26, 2019

The Real News Network's Steve Horn and Dimitri Lascaris talk about the 2019's biggest climate stories.

Story Transcript

Lisa Snowden-McCray: Welcome to The Real News Network. I’m Lisa Snowden-McCray. The Real News is spending some time looking back over some of the most important issues we covered this year including Latin America, Israel and Palestine, US politics, the criminal justice system, and the climate crisis.
2019 was a busy and scary year for climate news. Places all over the planet reached temperatures higher than ever recorded, warnings from scientists and activists reached a fevered pitch; teen activist Greta Thunberg sounded an alarm for people gathered at the International Climate Talks held in Madrid earlier this month, saying, quote, “We no longer have time to leave out the science.”

Here at The Real News Network, we were on top of it all. We tackled the Green New Deal, environmental justice issues associated with oil drilling, and the power Big Oil maintains in Canada. Today, I’m joined by Real News climate reporter and producer, Steve Horn, who’s been at the climate beat since 2010. Also joining us is Real News contributor Dimitri Lascaris, who is also a member of our board of directors. Dimitri focuses his coverage on climate politics and foreign policy. Thank you both for joining us.

Dimitri Lascaris: Thank you, Lisa.

Steve Horn: Good to be here.

Lisa Snowden-McCray: Now, at the beginning of this year, actually at the beginning of your time here with us, Steve, we were wanting to do some reporting on the aftermath of Hurricane Maria in Puerto Rico, which is definitely a climate issue. Dimitri, you were actually on the ground there in Puerto Rico. Can you talk a little bit about what you saw?

Dimitri Lascaris: Yeah. So, I was there in March of this year, so many months had gone by since Hurricane Maria had ravaged the island. And I could see signs of the devastation in quite a few places. There were a number of buildings that were destroyed, had not been demolished, or were in a state of disrepair. I drove from the north of the island to the south of the island, and as I crossed through forested areas, I saw large swaths of trees that had been stripped bare.

I visited a baseball stadium in San Juan where the municipality was giving out free supplies, in particular free fresh water because a lot of people still couldn’t access fresh water. So, the island had been recovering very slowly, and it was clear that it was nowhere near a complete recovery at that time, and it was in that context when, thanks to some excellent investigative work by Steve, we discovered that [inaudible 00:02:34], rather than moving away from a fossil fuels-dependent energy system, was actually upping the ante with liquified natural gas. And that’s something that I think Steve can talk about in some light.

Lisa Snowden-McCray: Yeah, Steve, can you talk a little bit about that?

Steve Horn: Yeah. So, what I realized is that… I was following this issue in the Southeast United States where this capital investor kind of oligarch-type figure, Wes Edens, was building out LNG-by-rail down there. And of course, Florida being the closest state to Puerto Rico, and he was gearing that up to LNG-by-rail to export, I was wondering, where is that natural gas going?

So, I started doing research, and when I found out that Dimitri was going to Puerto Rico, and I found out, “Okay, one of the places that’s targeted is Puerto Rico.” And so, basically what I did from there is examined the exacts of how much is planned to go to Puerto Rico, and the… especially looking at what was happening on the United States side, with the broader LNG-by-rail; they needed to get a permit from the Trump administration, meaning Edens’ company, and there’s been several instances this year, I think there’s been… Edens has been sort of the connective tissue in a lot of natural gas-related issues. Like I said, LNG By Rail and others happening in the eastern United States.

And then the last thing I’ll say about that is, even going into the power politics of the Democratic Party in Milwaukee, Wes Edens… There are conventions in Milwaukee this year. Eden is on a host committee of the convention, same guy who owns the natural gas that’s going to… and also opening power plants in Puerto Rico and in that area of the world. And one of the questions that was being raised is, “Why is the Democratic Party not discussing climate change at its debates?” And so, one of the answers may be, oh, well, Wes Edens is a huge player in the convention that ends all of these debates, where the Democrats will announce their final nominee. So, yeah, there’s been many instances where he has popped up this year.

Lisa Snowden-McCray: Yeah. I can see, as we move in, as the Democrats kind of narrow in on who their presidential candidate’s going to be, climate change could or possibly could not be one of the issues that we continue to discuss. Steve, I want to kind of keep going with you for a little bit. I know that you’re based out of California, which is always just a font of climate news for a variety of reasons, and you did a lot of reporting on cap and trade this year. Can you talk a little bit about that, and how that effects climate?

Steve Horn: Yeah. So, cap and trade is California’s climate policy; it’s what oversees not only everything that happens at the state level, but also at the local level when cities create climate action plans. So, it’s really important to understand the basic question: is cap and trade actually working in a way that its proponents say it’s working? It’s been the policy of the state basically this entire decade, first signed into law by Governor Jerry Brown, and now being carried out by our new governor, Gavin Newsome. And so, yeah, a lot of our coverage has been… kind of since I started right when Newsome started, it’s, what is Newsome doing in the aftermath of Brown?

Brown was seen as almost like a global figure in climate change and his leadership in the way that promoters say it. So, that’s PR on their end; what we’re trying to do is answer the question, is California actually a quote-unquote “climate leader” the way that it’s been hailed?

And basically, our reporting on the cap and trade system, and on another related issue called the tropical forest standard, has said, “Take a step back,” and actually seeing, well, not quite as much, you know? The emissions numbers aren’t as good as the proponents said they were going to be; there are serious questions on if those numbers can be met by 2030. And as that happens, oil and gas continue… sorry, oil in particular continues to be drilled in this state. There’s not a really whole lot of huge changes happening that would point to the fact that, “Oh, well, the emissions are going down.”

So, basically, it’s a question of, is cap and trade more of a scheme that’s being used to toy with the numbers? And, yeah, the emissions numbers tell a different story than what the proponents are saying that’s happening.

Lisa Snowden-McCray: I got to say, I’m not feeling too good with the things that you guys have told me so much about climate. It’s like, Puerto Rico’s still bad. This legislation’s not working.

What do you see… I guess, based on your reporting, especially like these two pieces of legislation that you just talked about, is legislation the way forward? Is that going to be the thing that saves us?

Dimitri Lascaris: I think that the threshold question is, how are going to get that legislation? Because you indicated at the outset, you said that there has been, I think, a real shift in the public’s consciousness about this crisis in the West, and this is certainly the case in Canada. And this is a very positive development. You know, we’re seeing in Canada significant resistance on the ground to the government’s complacency about the climate emergency; Extinction Rebellion, which I believe was founded in Europe, has now migrated to Canada, it’s begun to stage acts of civil disobedience on the ground. A few months ago in Montreal, an estimated 500,000 people marched for the climate and listened to a powerful speech from Greta Thunberg. I was there, and it was extraordinary to see that many Canadians in the street. It was the largest protest in the history of the province of Quebec, which has seen a lot of big protests over the years.

Public concern over the climate crisis seems to have had an impact at the ballot box, as well, in Canada. In the federal election in October, Justin Trudeau was returned to power, but with a minority of seats rather than majority. And I think it’s fair to say he paid a price for the fact that he broke his promise to end fossil fuel subsidies. He bought this Trans Mountain tar sands pipeline from US energy giant, Kinder Morgan, for 4.5 billion dollars. His promise to spend billions more to expand it…

Canada’s existing plans will leave us about 80 million tons of CO2 shy of the existing 2030 goal of 513 megatons of CO2 in equivalence, and that goal is the weak goal of the prior conservative governor, Steven Harper, which Justin Trudeau criticized when he was in opposition. And so, I think Canadian voters are grasping more than ever that when it comes to the climate emergency, there’s a huge disparity between the reality and the Trudeau government’s rhetoric. And this is happening in other countries, and the reaction has been one that gives me a great deal of hope. It’s been resistance and real demands for radical change.

Lisa Snowden-McCray: Okay. I feel a little bit better. Does Trudeau have any things kind of planned to gain back some of that ground that he lost with a lot of voters?

Dimitri Lascaris: Well, he’s certainly talking the talk, but… He just had a meeting with the Premier of Alberta, which is where the fossil fuels industry in Canada is centered, and he emerged from that meeting, he issued a communique in which he said that the government remains as determined as ever to build the Trans Mountain Pipeline.

So, you know, I think, really, what would have sent an even more powerful message is if he had been removed from office entirely. He doesn’t seem to have grasped yet that he’s going to be expected by this electorate to begin to deliver on his promise to deal with the climate crisis. And I do think that that expectation is now real, and any politician who continues to ignore that expectation is going to pay a serious price at the ballot box.

Lisa Snowden-McCray: Now, I feel like one of the things that we function to do here at Real News is to kind of be the ones helping ring the alarms, to let people know how serious things are, and one of the ways that you do that is with some of your climate science reporting. Are there any things that we really need to make sure that we have at the top of our list? What are the things that are kind of the things that are most jarring, the things that are going to be the most important, Dimitri… I guess in the past and going forward, what do you think we need to really keep it in mind?

Dimitri Lascaris: Well, I think what we’ve seen over and over again, Lisa, is that the scientific community is underestimating the severity and rapidity of climate change, and we just did a story at the Real News about a new climate model being developed by the Canadian government. This climate model showed or is predicting that if in a high-emissions scenario, the world will see between seven and eight degrees Celsius of warming by 2100. So, that’s within the lifetime of children who are being born today.

Lisa Snowden-McCray: Yeah.

Dimitri Lascaris: At that level, if we achieve that level of warming by 2100, I can’t imagine how we’re going to be able to avoid a civilizational collapse. It would be absolutely unmanageable and devastating for the human population. Even under this new model, even in a strong emissions reduction scenario, the model’s predicting 2.4 degrees Celsius of warming, and that’s significantly above the upper threshold stipulated by the Paris Climate Accord, which said, you know, we should be aiming to keep it under 1.5 and as much as possible, below two.

So, we understand, based upon our investigation into this new modeling, that this is not just confined to this model, but that other newer, more sophisticated climate models are also yielding results that are more alarming than the prior generation of models. So, this is something we have to watch very carefully, and as the science becomes more sophisticated, the results are becoming more concerning. So, the political will has to catch up to the science, and it’s not yet doing that.

Lisa Snowden-McCray: Okay. And while we’re kind of talking predictions, Steve, what do you have on your plate? What are some of the things that you think are super important as we move into 2020?

Steve Horn: Well, I think that the… I mean, since we’re talking about movements, in the United States, the movement around the Green New Deal started really at the beginning of this year as almost a new thing. And it morphed into, there is now something called the select committee on the climate crisis, which was a compromise between the Pelosi wing of the party and, we’ll just say, the AOC wing, which was calling for a select committee on the Green New Deal…

Lisa Snowden-McCray: The squad.

Steve Horn: Yeah, the squad! Exactly. So, in March, the select committee will be putting forward… by the end of March is the deadline to put forward its report on what it’s learned in the past year of hearings, and field reports, and stuff that they’ve been doing. It’ll be interesting to see what that select committee puts forward, and how that compares to the demand for the Green New Deal, which is happening now not only at the national level where it started, but has moved really to many states, to regions like in the South, which we’ve covered for The Real News.

There’s now a piece of legislation called The Green New Deal for Affordable Housing; that’s the first legislation, so it’ll be interesting to see how that’s discussed in the presidential cycle, and I will say, lastly, the Green New Deal has now gone global. The European Commission just announced its own Green New Deal, Jeremy Corbyn’s been talking about the Green New Deal. So, this concept that was once just something that Green Party candidate Jill Stein was talking about on the campaign trail when she was running in the 2012 cycle, now has become something that really has… and really, was a fringe-ish idea back then, has become a global phenomenon. And that’s really interesting to watch in the months ahead, for sure.

Lisa Snowden-McCray: All right! Well, thank you, Steve, thank you, Dimitri, for all your hard work, and thanks for coming on today.

Dimitri Lascaris: Thank you, Lisa.

Steve Horn: Thank you.

Lisa Snowden-McCray: I’m Lisa Snowden-McCray, and you’ve been watching The Real News Network.

Speaker 4: Thanks a lot for watching! Appreciate it. But do us one more [inaudible 00:14:39] favor. Hit the Subscribe button below. You know you want to. Stay up on your videos.

https://therealnews.com/stories/year-in-climate-crisis-fossil-fuels-expansion-scary-science-and-global-activism
Rob not the poor, because he is poor: neither oppress the afflicted in the gate:
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Black Bear News Live Stream - Music


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Rob not the poor, because he is poor: neither oppress the afflicted in the gate:
For the Lord will plead their cause, and spoil the soul of those that spoiled them. Pr. 22:22-23

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Bolivia’s Free Territory Of Chapare Has Ousted The Coup Regime And Is Bracing For A Bloody Re-Invasion

December 27, 2019

By Ollie Vargas, Thegrayzone.com. Cochabamba, Bolivia

Known as Bolivia’s Chapare region, the Tropico of Cochabamba is a sanctuary for elected President Evo Morales' most dedicated base of support. Since the November 10 coup, it has effectively become a self-governing territory where the military junta is absent. The police and military were sent in full retreat from this area the coup began and were told they would only be welcomed back if the they “get on their knees and apologize” to the community. 

full article with more pictures
Rob not the poor, because he is poor: neither oppress the afflicted in the gate:
For the Lord will plead their cause, and spoil the soul of those that spoiled them. Pr. 22:22-23

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Understanding Socialism ✨: Richard Wolff vs 👹 Capitalism
1,495 views•Jan 3, 2020


Thom Hartmann Program
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Is your workplace more similar to a kingdom or a democracy? Richard Wolff explores how socialism can Democratize the workplace.
 
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Reviews from Understanding Socialism, by Richard Wolff

A blend of history, analysis, and theory, "Understanding Socialism" is an honest and approachable text that knocks down false narratives, confronts failures and challenges of various socialist experiments throughout history, and offers a path to a new socialism based on workplace democracy.

"Richard Wolff's book is the best accessible and reliable treatment we have of what socialism is, was, and should be.” - Cornel West

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“Lucid, brilliant and uncompromising in his dissection of the capitalist system he also provides a sane and just socialist alternative to capitalist exploitation, one we must all fight to achieve.” - Chris Hedges

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Rob not the poor, because he is poor: neither oppress the afflicted in the gate:
For the Lord will plead their cause, and spoil the soul of those that spoiled them. Pr. 22:22-23

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Re: Profiles in Courage
« Reply #237 on: January 04, 2020, 05:03:39 pm »
By Ramzy Baroud, Ramzybaroud.net

January 3, 2020 | RESIST! 

🕊 Archbishop Atallah Hanna ✨
Rob not the poor, because he is poor: neither oppress the afflicted in the gate:
For the Lord will plead their cause, and spoil the soul of those that spoiled them. Pr. 22:22-23

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What If...? 🎯
« Reply #238 on: January 08, 2020, 08:28:16 pm »
What If...? | a spoof in which we make all the right 🎯 decisions | Extinction Rebellion ✨
7,763 views•Jan 3, 2020


Extinction Rebellion
51.5K subscribers

The mini-sequel 'What If' was produced by the team behind the award winning film 'The Age of Stupid' https://www.imdb.com/title/tt1300563/, to commemorate its 10th anniversary re-release. That ambitious documentary/drama/animation hybrid starred Pete Postlethwaite as an archivist in the devastated world of the future, asking the question: "Why didn't we stop climate change when we still had the chance?" He looks back on footage of real people around the world in the years leading up to 2015 before runaway climate change took place.

Our thanks to Franny Armstrong and the folks at Spanner Films https://www.SpannerFilms.net/ for their rebroadcast permission. FYI... 'Age of Stupid' is now available to buy or rent from video on demand platforms. Get it now on:
iTunes: https://itunes.apple.com/us/movie/the...
Amazon: http://amzn.eu/d/7JuDwzh
Vimeo: https://vimeo.com/ondemand/theageofst...
Google Play: https://play.google.com/store/movies/...

Meanwhile, for those of us who do not live in a parallel universe, the year is 2020 and we believe it is our duty to act. Together, let's unite and insist our governments take action for us, for our children and for all life! We are unprepared for the danger our future holds. We face floods, wildfires, extreme weather, crop failure, mass displacement and the breakdown of society. The time for denial is over. Our system is broken but we are Rising Up! 


Join the rebellion: https://Rebellion.Earth/
International: https://Rebellion.Global/

1. #TellTheTruth
2. #ActNow
3. #BeyondPolitics

World Map of Extinction Rebellion Groups: https://Rebellion.Global/branches/
Twitter: https://twitter.com/ExtinctionR
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/ExtinctionRe...
Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/ExtinctionR...
Category Nonprofits & Activism
Rob not the poor, because he is poor: neither oppress the afflicted in the gate:
For the Lord will plead their cause, and spoil the soul of those that spoiled them. Pr. 22:22-23

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Auditors Battle Cops to Protect our First Amendment Rights
18,547 views•Premiered Jan 9, 2020


The Real News Network
376K subscribers

Auditors across the country are turning the tables on police surveillance. The Police Accountability Report spoke to an auditor who was arrested to understand how filming cops ultimately preserves our civil rights.

Producer: Stephen Janis
                   Taya Graham
Director: Bababtunde Ogunfolaju

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CategoryNews & Politics
Rob not the poor, because he is poor: neither oppress the afflicted in the gate:
For the Lord will plead their cause, and spoil the soul of those that spoiled them. Pr. 22:22-23

 

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