Environment

The splitting sound

Submitted: Feb 06, 2011
By: 
Badlands Journal editorial board

Why did this happen? Why did even the near-collapse of the financial system, and its desperate rescue by two reluctant administrations, fail to give the government any real

leverage over the major banks?

By March 2009, the Wall Street banks were not just any interest group. Over the past thirty years, they had become one of the wealthiest industries in the history of the American economy, and one of the most powerful political forces in Washington. Financial sector money poured into the campaign war chests of congressional representatives.

 

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Angelides commission report (2)

Submitted: Feb 03, 2011
By: 
Badlands Journal editorial board

A more critical view of the Financial Crisis Inquiry Commission than the one offered by McClatchy editorialists a few days ago in a shallow defense of one of its favorite son, Phil Angelides, Sacramento developer, protege of Angelo Tsakopoulos, former state treasurer and gubernatorial candidate, who chaired the commission.
Badlands Journal editorial board


2-2-11
Propublica
In Postcrisis Report, a Weak Light on Complex Transactions
by Jesse Eisinger
http://www.propublica.org/thetrade/item/in-postcrisis-report-a-weak-light-on-complex-transactions/
 The report from the Financial Crisis Inquiry Commission has been assailed [1] as a confusing [2] mishmash [3] -- poorly organized, unclear about what's new and weakened by conclusions that are at once obvious and unsatisfying. The problems of the commission were evident from the start: its mandate was too broad, its timetable too short, its budget too small and its commissioners too partisan.

Those criticisms are true, but overdone.

The report is full of fascinating information, rich detail and fine documentary evidence. The commission should be celebrated for putting more than 1,100 documents online [4] for anyone to search.

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Green history (5)

Submitted: Feb 01, 2011
By: 
Badlands Journal editorial board

1-28-30-11

counterpunch.com

A concise history of the rise and fall of the enviro establishment 

A Touch of Babbittry

by Jeffery St. Clair

http://www.counterpunch.com/stclair01282011.html

Bruce Babbitt's inglorious role in brokering the Deal of Shame, which restarted logging in the ancient forests of the Pacific Northwest, shocked many greens. After all, Babbitt was viewed as one of them. He had been president of the League of Conservation Voters, and many had seen him as the eco-chevalier of the Clinton administration. But the gratuitous stab in the back should have surprised no one.

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Green History (4)

Submitted: Jan 23, 2011
By: 
Badlands Journal editorial board

Jeffrey St. Clair is the author of Been Brown So Long It Looked Like Green to Me: the Politics of Nature and Grand Theft Pentagon. His newest book, Born Under a Bad Sky, is published by AK Press / CounterPunch books. He can be reached at: sitka@comcast.net.  This essay is excerpted from the forthcoming book GreenScare: the New War on Environmentalism by Jeffrey St. Clair and Joshua Frank.

1-21-11
counterpunch.com
A Concise History of the Rise and Fall of the Enviro Establishment
How Green Became the Color of Money
By JEFFREY ST. CLAIR
http://www.counterpunch.com/stclair01212011.html
"Gestures of Goodwill"
Given his attenuated record in Arkansas no one should have expected President Bill Clinton to live up to his campaign promises of attacking “special interests” and defending the “little guy.” Any precious illusions about such a possibility disappeared even before the inauguration, when Clinton stock-piled his administration with an assortment of corporate lawyers (Mickey Kantor and Bernard Nussbaum), financiers (Robert Rubin of Goldman Sachs), lobbyists (Howard Paster and Ron Brown) and corporate executives (Mack McLarty).

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Come fly the westside thermals

Submitted: Jan 20, 2011
By: 
Badlands Journal editorial board

This announcement is excellent news for the farmers and communities that rely on water from Reclamation to grow the crops that provide over 50% of the food supply for the United States. -- Thomas Birmingham, general manager Westlands Water District, Jan. 18, 2011

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Green Hisotry (3)

Submitted: Jan 17, 2011
By: 
Badlands Journal editorial board

1-14-11
counterpunch.com
A Concise History of the Rise and Fall of the Enviro Establishment (Part Three)
How Green Became the Color of Money
By JEFFREY ST. CLAIR
http://www.counterpunch.com/stclair01142011.html

In the Clinton era, the contours of environmental politics settled into a triangulated landscape, bounded by the Executive Office Building and its agency outlets (where administrative fiats were handed down with devastating finality); the committee rooms of Congress (where the chairmen of the all-important appropriations committees dole out pork and pollution); and the grey mansions of the special interest lobbies, both environmental and industrial, stacked along K Street. Daily the inhabitants of these centers of power determined the levels of lead in the blood of children in south-central Los Angeles; the number of Chinook salmon chewed up by hydro-electric dams on the Columbia River; the gallons of dioxin flushed into the Mississippi; and the fate of such animals as the grizzly bear, whose habitat can remain protected public land or be transformed into clearcuts or cyanide-laced heap leach gold mines.

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Bubble blindness

Submitted: Jan 06, 2011
By: 
Badlands Journal editorial board


"It's one of those perfect storm situations," said UC Merced economics professor Shawn Kantor. "So it will take a very long time for this area to recover." ..."This particular area has chronically had high unemployment relative to the state and the country, which all ties to low educational attainment and poverty," Kantor said. "The circularity of the socioeconomic conditions make it difficult for this area to succeed economically. And then it got hit with the housing and government bubbles bursting." ... "Even though agriculture is healthy and we can expect further growth, it doesn't have the job-generation capacity to mop up all this displaced construction labor," said Jeff Michael, director of the Business Forecasting Center at the University of the Pacific in Stockton.--Merced SunStar, January 6, 2011

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California bondage

Submitted: Jan 05, 2011
By: 
Badlands Journal editorial board

12-31-10
Indybay.org
Supreme Court Terminated Governor's Last Ditch Petition to Sell State Properties
by Dan Bacher
http://www.indybay.org/newsitems/2010/12/31/18667918.php
Outgoing California Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger and his collaborators have waged a campaign to greenwash his absymal environmental legacy through a plethora of press releases, photo opportunities and puff pieces before he leaves office. One of the most shameful examples of these efforts to rewrite history by casting Schwarzenegger in the role of "green governor" is Terry Tamminen's Huffington Post puff piece, "He'll Be Back" (http://www.huffingtonpost.com/terry-tamminen/hell-be-back_b_802128.html).

"In 'Terminator', Arnold Schwarzenegger famously utters 'I'll be back.' The world should hope that he'll be back to keep working on these issues with the unique style of public service that is the basis of his unprecedented green legacy," Tamminen claims.

In stark contrast, Patrick Porgans, a longtime advocate for the public trust, has written a superb piece exposing the Governor's last ditch petition to sell 11 state office properties to private corporations before leaving office. The plan was supposedly designed to pay off a portion of the state's multi billion deficit and increasing debt load.

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New Report identifies top 10 ecosystems to save - Calif. Featured‏

Submitted: Jan 05, 2011
By: 
Badlands Journal editorial board

For Immediate Release: January 5, 2011

 

Contact:       Dr. Mark Rockwell, California Representative, Endangered Species Coalition,

                        V.P. Conservation, Federation of Fly Fishers, 530 559-5759

Leda Huta, Executive Director, Endangered Species Coalition: 202-320-6467

            

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