Showing posts from March 12, 2014

US State Dept expects massive climate failure from President Obama, America and world

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[Zero expectations of climate change response from the Obama government - I can hear the smile creaking into place on Harper's face. *RON*]

Barry Saxifrage, Vancouver Observer, Mar 11th, 2014

US Secretary of State John Kerry claims "the United States is committed to doing its part" to fight the "clear and present danger" of the climate crisis. But a high-profile, eleven-volume, multi-year study from his own department says to expect only rising carbon emissions and broken climate promises from America.
The only future this State Department study expects will occur is one in which:
America fails to meet President Obama's Copenhagen Accord targetAmerica emits even more CO2 in 2040 than it does todayAmerican CO2 levels are consistent with the International Energy Agency's (IEA) scenario for +6C of global warming The IEA says such a future would be a "catastrophe for all of us." International Monetary Fund (IMF) director…

America Ranks 98th in the World? The Shocking Dismal Number of Women in Elected Office

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[The US is "behind Kenya and Indonesia, and barely ahead of the United Arab Emirates." Nations that do better prioritize the recruitment of women, &/or set quotas, &/or have national daycare, but mainly, they have proportional representation voting systems. *RON*]
The Nation / By Steven Hill, Reprinted on Alternet, March 11, 2014
This article originally appeared in The Nation, and is reprinted here with their permission.

With Hillary Clinton the early front-runner in the 2016 Democratic primary, the United States may join the U.K., Germany, Brazil and Argentina as democracies that have had a woman as their top leader. Yet the alarming reality is that American women are still vastly underrepresented in elected offices all across the nation. Remember the “Year of the Woman” in 1992? Two decades later women still hold less than 20 percent of congressional seats, despite composing a majority of the U.S. population.

And compared to other nation…

My Life as a Retail Worker: Nasty, Brutish, and Poor

See the original article here.
[Life today: McJobs in the service sector. After veteran reporter Joseph Williams lost his job, he found employment in a sporting-goods store. In a personal essay, he recalls his struggles with challenges millions of Americans return to day after day. *RON*]

Joseph Williams, The Atlantic, March 11, 2014

My plunge into poverty happened in an instant. I never saw it coming.

Then again, there was no reason to feel particularly vulnerable. Two years ago, I was a political reporter at Politico, and I spent my days covering the back-and-forth of presidential politics. I had access to the White House because of my reporting beat, and I was a regular commentator on MSNBC. My career had been on an upward trajectory for 30 years, and at age 50 I still anticipated a long career.

On June 21, 2012, I was invited to discuss race, Republican candidate Mitt Romney, and the 2012 presidential election on MSNBC. I said this:

“Romney is very, very comfortable, it seems, with …

Surveillance Practices Violate Rights: US Record Under Review at UN

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[“The US holds itself out as a leader on civil and political rights, but its record is rife with failings and contradictions. The US still has a long way to go before its practice meets its rhetoric.” US lack of enthusiasm for the UN (and the International Criminal Court) is understandable in that it's one of the few bodies capable of holding the US to external account for its policies and actions. *RON*]
No author listed, Human Rights Watch, March 12, 2014

The United States will appear before the committee on March 13 and 14, 2014, for a periodic review of its compliance with the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (ICCPR), a core international human rights treaty that the US ratified in 1992.

“The mass communications surveillance revealed by Edward Snowden demonstrates a shocking disregard by the US for the privacy rights of both those inside the country and those abroad,” said Andrea Prasow, senior national security counsel and adv…

Rick Mercer Eviscerates 'Lying' Tory MP (VIDEO)


You're Losing Your Shirt On These Publicly Funded Projects

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[The problem was not with government expenditure as such. There is nothing wrong with the idea of a financial stimulus during a large recession; it should have been larger. The emphasis, though, should have been on infrastructure and public works, e.g., roads, schools, parks. These sound as though they must have been mainly political choices; propping up private projects that weren't good enough to find funding otherwise. They should absolutely shut off the tap on failed projects such as these. *RON*]

Jordan Bateman, BC Dir., Canadian Taxpayers Federation, Huff Post, March 12, 2014

Five years after governments poured billions of dollars into economic stimulus projects, we are beginning to see how foolish many of those so-called "investments" really are.

At the time, both the federal Conservatives and B.C. Liberals felt they needed to prop up the economy by taking on huge debt and funding virtually any "shovel-ready" government projec…

B.C. government refreshes century-old water law with new law expected in 2015

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[Nationally and globally competitive pricing will be important; the odds are that the Liberals will more or less give our water away. Notice that there is not one word about fracking. I will post something there if I can find out more about how the public gives its input to this bill. *RON*]

by Keven Drews, Canadian Press, Huffington Post, 03/11/2014

VICTORIA - Environment Minister Mary Polak has turned the taps on British Columbia's Water Act, refreshing the century-old law with new legislation and vowing to make the province a stewardship leader.

Following years of consultations with First Nations, outdoor and recreational groups, Polak introduced the Water Sustainability Act in Victoria on Tuesday.

Expected to come into effect in the in the spring of 2015, the new law will replace one that has been on the books since 1909 — a time when B.C.'s population was just 350,000, said Polak.