572 Comments

Let me get this right, these red states are allowed to keep revenue made by taking resources from FEDERAL LANDS? Meanwhile, blue state pay more into the US treasury than red states? For all their talk of “rugged individualism” these red states don’t mind living off the largess of the hard working blue states. I realize this is off topic from the critical over heating of the planet issue, but I think that the vast overreach of red states is at the root of a number of our current problems.

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As well as lies vs truth, and long standing CORPORATE socialism as the destruction continues, indeed, is encouraged and protected. THIS is the message and fight I long to hear from my president.

Thanks professor.

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Bottom line: Industrial capitalism rewards greed. Puts profit over people as the motivator. It will (if left unchecked) destroy the Earth and us. IMHO of course.

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Earth will become like the dead planet Charn in "The Magician's Nephew" (1955, C. S. Lewis).

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Nah, She will evolve into a new phase. We will become dead because, well, climate change to the point very few will survive. New ecosystems will emerge.

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The leaders of red states which oppose everything President Biden wants to do are like spoiled 2 year olds on the floor kicking and screaming. And they will be the first ones whining when the power goes out. Record heat in June with the worst to come means they will once again be responsible for killing thousands of people.

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That leapt out at me, too. Mineral rights of federal lands are sold/leased, profits accrue to the fossil fuel companies, and states benefit from the taxes of those profits. Interrupt that chain, and interrupt the flow of capital from federally subsidized private businesses to state coffers.

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Great point. I was thinking what Deb Halland was thinking when the Wyoming Bobblasso said what he said about royalties. Those oil royalties are a privilege her home state does not have. And why don’t Native American tribes get any of that money?

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I don’t know if they do or don’t but yes definitely should.

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They do not. And oil company's never clean up their environmental messes on Native Land. There is no one to make them either and that is wrong. And that is the case in Wind River, Wyoming and throughout the west.

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Ah, Roger not fair to use logical reasoning to debunk the ‘rugged individualism’ myth! Where would the plane, train and auto industry be without federal $$$$! Ike wanted an interstate Highway network mainly for military reasons, thus federal funds for mass transportation, which was still viable during his era, was shifted to building roads! Begetting the type of suburban sprawl mentioned in many of the comments regarding the demise of the charm of the European countryside!

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Yeah, I was livid when I learned that a couple of years ago.

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I do not believe it’s a red blue issue. Immediately controversial to Republicans, especially in states with gas and oil reserves, was Pres Biden freezing new leases on federal lands. More production will go to companies that lease on private lands. These reserves are located in states to the east of the Mississippi.

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Interesting point.

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This argument is a nonstarter in my opinion. I live in a rural area of a red state. In my county we also spend millions maintaining roads through federal lands that residents and tourists alike enjoy. Not to mention the “hard working blue states” have been the beneficiary of all the extractive industries throughout our history, so stay off your high horse.

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No! The chief beneficiary of all the extractive industries throughout our history has been the corporations, their CEOs and their neoliberal handmaidens, both Republican and Democratic whose campaign coffers have been well oiled by these corporations. Why else the insanity by Exxon whose own scientists told it the truth about the causative link between their hydrocarbons burning a big hole through the ozone layer and impending climate disaster? And these fools not just lied about these conclusions but manufactured calculated fictions refuting these conclusions. "A new investigation shows the oil company understood the science before it became a public issue and spent millions to promote misinformation" (scientificamerican.com). The humans constituting the deciders in the extractive industries and their beneficiaries would do anything required to save their children from their burning homes, wouldn't they? "Insanity 1.in a state of mind which prevents normal perception , behavior, or social interaction; seriously mentally ill." Given these humans today are protecting their extractive industries they are - in effect -saying "sure let's burn up the children honey and while we're doing it the doggie, kittie, and grandpa out back!" because we are penny wise and pound foolish. Sane people are connected and informed by their instincts. Our ancestors gifted us life because they saved their kids and grandpa from their burning homes, their instincts made our lives possible. The deciders in these extractive industries and in these states know exactly what they are doing as Exxon did. These deciders are murderers. They've been murdering the truth and their propaganda has helped murder our instinctual guidance. So the sheep in these states - shorn of their outrage because long amputated from their instincts - are signing up for death insurance so they can be guaranteed to be run off the cliff. They've been sold a bill of goods that death by petroleum is better than life through faith in human creative potential and intentionality to do whatever necessary to expand the degrees of freedom for life - all life - to continue. Involving discipline and sacrifice. Letting go of the less important for the greater good.

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I mostly agree with this. I don’t think of people as sheep though. Just as needing to survive in this system in whatever way they can find. Ideology becomes very flexible or at least takes a back seat when your kids can’t eat. It’s an inevitable outcome of the capitalist system.

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Climate catastrophe deniers and anti-Covid safe distancing practices are either 1. money and power addicts (their children always suffer) 2. caught in religious delusions 3. dependent personalities (believe what they're told not what they experience/see ( independently) 4. know nothing about and probably disinterested in science as a way to understand something more about reality 5. sociopathic 6. psychopathic 7. shallow. 8. lost in normalizing the abnormal (rationalizing the level of rampant sadism in our corporatized culture). Lots of sheep in a society that puts up with the existence of the mega wealthy and corporations eviscerating the "civil" in what makes a society "civilized."

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Good morning Selina! You are on a roll today.

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Must be because of the pre-developer Ballard in my veins!

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Thank you, Selina. That was sweet!

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Agree. No matter how we disagree, it is wrong to call people sheep. When we use words like sheep, like Stalin and Hitler did, calling certain groups "sheep" or "pigs" it dehumanizes them. Likening human beings to something to be mastered, caged, and owned. Something to be later slaughtered. Both Hitler ( to races, religions, and eastern Europeans) and Stalin did to the landowners when he collectivized the Ukrainian farms. So I do hope we stop calling any one or any group "sheep" no matter how passionate our disagreement.

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One could take the point of view that calling people sheep would be a complement given the fact sheep aren’t burning a hole through the ozone layer,sending billions of dollars of flying killer machines to Israel, buying legislators to kill Medicare for all, robotizing Amazon warehouse humanity so we get our new pair of yoga pants 3 days earlier, or legislate immunity to liability suits for nursing home CEO’s, or employ sheep police to kill off the black 2 leggeds or put short people at the start of life in cages. Does the sheep society have their own Harvey Weinstein too, preying on young females for their sexual and sadistic dominance thrills?

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You can and should call out the injustice and wrongs of other human beings, but you can do so without dehumanization.

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I have to disagree here. We all make decisions about how and where to work and therefore add our energies to.

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Unfortunately, there are is a goodly slice of the population who really don't have freedom of choice with regards to where they live and work. They are stuck, literally, where they are, regardless of rural or urban location. Choice is a luxury fueled by money not necessarily by desire, hopes, and dreams.

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Agree 100%. "luxury" is having the resources and the ability to pick up and move, search for a new home and new opportunities.... these are privilege's that are distributed unequally. Climate catastrophes will worsen this scenario. The poor will suffer immensely more than the wealthy. And what do you call large groups of desperate people? ( you call it what it is, a National Security Risk!)

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Yes and no. I had nothing, didn’t like what the options were or where I was. I learned a skill and started my own one-person business and moved to where I did want to be. I do understand that the very poor are almost impossibly stuck.. but I had no money and borrowed to learn my trade so for a good many of us, it can be done.

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Critical thinking needs to be taught in school. The republicans that I know lack the critical ability to question. They just accept what they are told, no matter how ludicrous.

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THIS!

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@JoeBurly So glad you mentioned the $millions your county spends on local highways. Highways are expensive, true. But I encourage you to check your state and local budget and compare to your state's contribution to the Federal Highway Trust Fund. The interstate highway system's approximate 67,000 miles cost about $500 billion in 2016 dollars. That works out to about $7.5 million per mile. I also compared red vs blue states, as per the results on the 2020 election and see that 68% of those interstate miles are in red states. To add insult to injury the US's largest population centers (and largest number of car-driving tax payers) are in blue states. Boston, Chicago, Philadelphia and New York City are four of the world's most traffic-congested cities, as measured in hours lost to traffic congestion, and all are in blue states. (This point was made clear to me once when traveling near Omaha, Nebraska. I was driving on I-80, a sparsely trafficked ten-lane highway. I wasn't very happy as I compared this under-utilized monster to the mostly two-lane I-95 between New York City and Boston that is regularly jammed with slow moving traffic.)

The overwhelming portion of funding for the construction and maintenance of the interstate highway system comes from the federal Highway Trust Fund which gets money from the 18.3 cents per gallon tax on gasoline and 24.4 cents on diesel. These cost were fixed in 1993 and have lost more than 43% of their purchasing power since then, according to the Peter G. Peterson foundation (https://www.pgpf.org/). The American Society of Civil Engineers give the US a C- for infrastructure--and the reason is under funding. I'll leave it to you to research who regularly blocks an increase in the gas tax but they are largely from red states.

But back to HCR's point, if we cannot have a reasonable discussion about the implications of facts (e.g, federal funds are distributed in favor of red states), how the heck are we going to be able to make decisions needed to keep the planet from reaching an average temperature not seen for 50 million years?

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Good post and research to write it. Thanks.

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And the north needed the slave produced cotton too,eh?

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I get your point but that is a terrible comparison. People working in extractive industries are not slave owners. They are better compared to the slaves themselves. They are just trying to survive in this system like anyone else. The corporations are going to be kept whole while the workers suffer, not unlike how many freed slaves suffered from lack of reparations. In this country capital always survives while workers pay the price.

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Well, Joe, as the West bakes and burns every year, how long will it be before population migration to the East takes place? Oh, it's happening now. More and more every year. Why are people moving? It's because the impacts of the burning of fossil fuels are heating the atmosphere at alarming rates, and causing global warming, which if left unchecked, will lead to climate change, which will basically screw human populations around the planet and cause chaos and wars as people fight for remaining natural resources. Is that Democrat propaganda? Science fiction? Lunacy? No, it's none of that. Those are scenarios that will play out over time; it is going to happen unless the brakes are put on fossil fuel consumption. I've studied the impacts of fossil fuel extraction and the burning of fossil fuels for a long time. The science is REAL and clear. Republicans can try to hold on to their fossil fuel-related industries and deny climate change all they want. They never will accept the reality of a changing global climate; they will continue to push energy sources that are clearly ruining the planet. To them, money talks. Common sense, logic, and reality are always denied. Why? Power and money, power and money, power and money. The energy industry can adapt; Republicans simply don't want it to. They're afraid of the backlash, afraid to take bold forward steps that can provide cleaner energy and millions of new jobs. They're afraid to lose the foundation that has buoyed America since the mid-1800s. Well, Joe, that foundation is going to melt away in the next couple of decades and commit its own suicide. But Republicans are too invested, or ignorant, or just plain stupid to see the handwriting on the wall.

Here in my little corner of eastern Pennsylvania, we are enduring our third - I repeat, THIRD - heat wave in the month of June. Heat waves never used to happen here until mid- to late July. Now they are becoming more frequent and arriving much earlier. It's all related to increased levels of CO2, methane, and other greenhouse gases that trap heat and can't escape from our atmosphere. It's a vicious cycle that worsens as time goes on, but the world keeps pumping out greenhouse gases. Now we have additional problems with melting glaciers and sea levels rising, and arctic tundra thawing all over the northern hemisphere and releasing enormous amounts of methane. Uh-oh. Joe, it's time for Republicans and everyone else who calls this planet their home to realize that the fate of humanity is in their hands. The almighty dollar is far more important to red state politicians and utility companies in all states than the survival of humans. It's happening Joe, right before our eyes, yet people with closed minds don't see it, even if it burns their homes or bakes their cattle, or evaporates drinking water in huge reservoirs such as Lake Mead or kills salmon populations in West Coast rivers. Go ahead, protect your Republican buddies and then realize you're contributing as much to the eclipse of humanity as the gases in the atmosphere that are causing all the extreme weather events around the world. Current Republican actions and agendas are despicable. Everything is all about them; the hell with anyone who disagrees. We'll do it ourselves; why do we need the feds?Ha ha ha. Real brave until the chips start falling all around them. Let's see how brave they are then. And don't tell me Democrats are the same way. That defensive mechanism is lame. Democratic leadership may not be perfect, but at least the Democrats understand threats that will impact EVERYONE, and they're trying to do something about it. I have never seen the world so screwed up in so many ways. And I'm not sorry to say that here in the United States, it the Lord and Supreme Dictator Trump who has empowered his red compatriots to think and behave like idiots. Don't be one of them.

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My Republican buddies. That’s rich. It never fails in this forum that if you step out of the comfy rich boomer neoliberal mindset even an inch you are going to get an earful from someone. What I am saying is that vilifying rural people is not the answer. Even if it worked you are getting your goals met on the backs of the people who LITERALLY provided the resources that built your cities and the amenities you are enjoying right now. Not to mention your food. If you want any hope of a transition away from fossil fuels that is equitable and just, you don’t do it by characterizing rural people as takers.

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Even if you aren't Republican or don't have Republican buddies, I was referring to Republican string-pullers, the legislators who are attempting to create their own rules and keep the planet hostage at everyone else's expense. Voting rights are a whole other issue. I am a retired Boomer, soon to turn 70, but I am neither comfy rich (never was) or a neoliberal. I'm a moderate who actually leans toward conservatism on some issues. I probably made an assumption about you that wasn't accurate or fair, and for that I apologize. But I won't retract my beliefs or statements about Republican leaders and their zeal to retain the fossil fuel industry in its present form. They must change, they must pull away from the enormous campaign contributions they receive, and they must understand that workers in the fossil fuel industry can be trained and transitioned to other jobs that also produce energy, albeit in a much cleaner and safer way. With that, I will virtually shake your hand and bid you a good day.

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I just described the heat wave we had here in Oregon. I do not vilify rural people as I pointed out in another post. I mentioned the fires we had last fall which devastated the lives of many in rural areas all over the state. Last night on the news were pictures of cooked blueberries still on the bushes on farms and of course all softer berries as well. I don't know what has happened to wine grapes which got a lot of smoke last fall. My own marionberries (a kind of blackberry), got cooked on the vine, but I was thinking more of all the berry growers who farm in my county. As far as I am concerned, we are in this together, including those farm workers who pick our crops, one of whom died, in the heatwave.

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I, for one, appreciate this discussion and your viewpoints, Joe.

We are people of this nation first, formed by the uniting of our states. It is our right and our freedom to pick up and move to any state we like or visit any state we like. I refuse to be a politicized pawn of legislators deciding which “side” I should be on. I don’t live in the country of Florida. I live in the United States of America.

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I should not have made assumptions about your location or ideology as you did mine. I apologize. I don’t know where you are coming from. I’m sure it is a sincere place.

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Conservative estimates put subsidies to the fossil fuel industry at roughly $20 billion per year in the US (see third paragraph). Need I say more?

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Only a Republican would respond to a post with the comment, "comfy rich boomer neoliberal mindset." :) Republicans have no financial incentive to create jobs in the green industry for their rural constituents, when republicans in the government create laws that endorse and subsidize fossil fuels.

Instead of bringing up the red herring of poor rural people who will suffer if we eliminate fossil fuels (when have Republicans ever thought about the little guy?), think outwardly and progressively to the future: create jobs for these poor rural people in the green sector.

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There is something for all of us to learn right here.

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I live in a rural area, too, Joe - in the East.

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Ok let’s have a discussion about cash flow with actual facts with real numbers. The resources red states “provided” apparently were substantially from federal lands made accessible through favorable leases.

The amount of blue tax vs red tax dollars is a fact. When one party gives more and the other party takes more, how do you describe it?

Your honest reply (preferably without cliche name calling) eagerly awaited.

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Slavery is not a question for today, ever. It is morally wrong to own another human being. Discussion over this is nonsensical.

As for Trump, he is a fascist as are his followers. If you look closely you will find him in the Rise And Fall of the Third Reich. He has a different name, a different look , but other than that he is Hitler and his evil conspirators all over again.

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My relatives who lived under Hitler would agree with you 100%.

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I live in Southern NYS - just over the PA state line. Same issues with the heat here this month. Two days this week of 103 degrees! Last night and again right this minute its raining - thank heavens. Things were getting pretty dry here - in the East! Pouring right now. Christine is right (below) in that people are scared. Not just in red states. Thinking about my gas powered vehicle (older) & the fact that I use propane for everything - including my generator. We ALL are going to have to make big changes at some point. One of the questions is - How! The wealthy will do just fine - but what about the rest of us? That is the biggest issue we all face - those of us who are NOT wealthy & powerful, right?

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This might be at the bottom.of this issue. Resources will become scare as the planet warms. An authoritarian government and/or oligarchy will enable the wealthy to claim these resources.

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Biden, Kerry and quite a number organizations are working on steps for solutions. Links to several important Climate organizations are below. You might google to learn what changes you can make in yourself in you home and otherwise.

Here in NYC we are in the oven of the beast, and I just received a warning not to use appliances, such as dishwashers, washing machines, etc., and cut down on air conditioning use as we are at risk for power failures.

https://www.rainforestcoalition.org/

https://www.catf.us/

https://www.itif.org/issues/energy-climate

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I don't think the wealthy are doing fine in relations to climate changes. They will steadfastly use fossil fuels and buy fresh water because they can. But, they will rarely contribute to the changes required to curb climate change.

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Census Bureau information for migration in the USA in 2020 is not available. The following figures were provided by major moving companies. This glimpse cannot account for the full picture.

'Key Takeaways from the 2020 Migration Report

People are fleeing California for Texas and Idaho'

Illinois, New York, and New Jersey are the three states with the most outbound moves.'

'The top five inbound states in 2020 are Idaho, Arizona, Tennessee, South Carolina, and North Carolina, with Tennessee overtaking South Carolina from the 2019 results.

Florida, Texas, and Colorado round out the top eight states for inbound moves.

Despite pandemic, people continued to move at rates comparable to 2019'

'Northeastern States Take Lead in Outbound Migration

Northeastern states make up four out of the seven states with the most outbound moves, and none of them make the top eight for inbound moves. New York led the way, followed by New Jersey and Maryland. But California edged out Maryland for fourth place on the outbound list. Pennsylvania and Michigan also made the list, and both states have made the top 10 fairly consistently for the past few years. Maryland has made the list for outbound moves since 2015, and it has ranked between second and fifth places. In 2020, it took fifth place'.

'People may be leaving the Northeast for a few reasons:'

'Harsh winters, since temperatures and snow can be intense in the region.'

'Job availability is another factor since many companies are avoiding the region: https://www.marketwatch.com/story/3-reasons-so-many-people-are-getting-the-hell-out-of-the-northeast-2018-10-20

The Northeast is also home to many cities with a high cost of living, making housing affordability challenging, especially as people lose their jobs.' (NorthAmerican Moving Services)

'Idaho was the state with the highest percentage of inbound migration (70%) among states experiencing more than 250 moves with United Van Lines for the second consecutive year, according to the study, which tracks the moving company’s proprietary data for customers’ 2020 state-to-state migration patterns.'

'What states are families fleeing in the greatest numbers? New Jersey, which, with 70% outbound in 2020, has held the top spot for exits for the past three years.'

'According to the Van Lines information, top states for inbound migration included South Carolina (64%), Oregon (63%), South Dakota (62%) and Arizona (62%), while New York (67%), Illinois (67%), Connecticut (63%) and California (59%) were among the states experiencing the "largest exoduses."

In addition to numbers, United Van Lines collects information about customers' reasons for leaving.

"This year’s survey results indicated 40% of Americans who moved did so for a new job or job transfer (down from prior years), and more than one in four (27%) moved to be closer to family (which is significantly up over prior years).'

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Really fascinating. I wonder how much the pandemic and the course of it in our country affected migration to another state?

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This sort of thing fascinates me. Thank you.

New Jersey, Rhode Island, Massachusetts, and Connecticut, in that order, are the most densely populated states. Dense populations correlate with outbound due to high cost of housing and probably density of traffic. But Massachusetts has some lures as well, such as a high concentration of highly educated professionals and a good cultural scene both in Boston and in the boonies. It also does not collaborate with the Feds on removing unauthorized immigrants, which may have contributed to that population's reaching ~230,000.

Massachusetts has gained half a million over the last ~15 years, for a total of 7 million. (I was very relieved Amazon didn't settle here.) As a result, the traffic has gotten much worse. The time it takes me to get to East Boston (a destination which includes Logan Airport) has grown from 30 minutes at the end of the Big Dig back to often as much as an hour.

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Those are trends that can change very easily. The Great Lakes region has seen a loss of population but I think it will regain popularity. Our winters in the NE are getting warmer and less severe.

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We need humans to reset their idea of “success” from accumulating currency and material possessions and an innate right to globetrot to putting care of our precious home, the Earth first. Success should be having the best ideas for and taking the best care of our planet and all “life” on it. Stupid television shows have acculturated us to having more and more stuff

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"We'll do it ourselves; why do we need the feds?Ha ha ha."

So true except the minute that federal funding to their state is reduced or endangered. Then they scream bloody murder about Democrats this and Dems that. They become the victim.

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10 likes, ty!

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Given your analogy, are you arguing it was a mistake to end slavery? Or do you mostly mean that the follow-up is critical?

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My point is that the perception that coastal elites do not care about rural Americans is not helped by policies that just pull the rug out from under workers without any just transition. If a person is making $100k a year working brutal hours in tough conditions in the oil field, while by the way providing a still crucial resource to our entire populace, they are not going to be very amenable to just having that job disappear and being told, “It’s ok; just retrain”. Especially while people in cities continue their lives without impact. Characterizing rural states with federal lands as being some kind of welfare state dependent on urban largess is insulting and counterproductive. Any transition to new energy that is driven by shifts in government policy should be accompanied by a just transition for workers including subsidizing their pay to their current amount for some period.

That being said that won’t happen, just like it didn’t happen when free trade agreements decimated manufacturing centers, because our system only prioritizes ideology and corporate profits.

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You make a good point. This transition should have started a LONG time ago and humans are woefully inept at facing the truth and looking forward, not to mention the rapacious greed and power hierarchy that has existed since the beginning of time. To your point, the fossil fuel industry isn’t the only sector that will need to be “transitioned.” Retail, manufacturing, etc., are being automated in our new Technological Revolution. Add to that, that fiat money has lost 15% of its buying power, and people know they are losing ground and every year and getting screwed but don’t know why (this is why). There will be major disruptions and turbulence in society as a result of all of this . A Universal Basic Income is what is called for, along with billionaires and corporations being taxed appropriately. This super wealth/poor gap is wrong in every level.

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As for the need for a just transition to good clean energy jobs - I agree with you, More to the point, President Biden and the congressional Democrats agree, which is why they have been hammering on their "American Jobs Plan," or whatever it is called now that a Republican-supported piece has been separated.

As for "insulting and counterproductive," that may be so, but it's a fact that red states literally get money from NY and other blue states every year via the federal government. Then their politicians whine about 'blue state bailouts' and refuse when NY needs help with Hurricane Sandy or covid-19! They complain about 'federal intrusion" while raking in cash from federal lands. It reminds me of my relative who reposted all sorts of super-hostile trash about Hilary Clinton, then got offended when she called him deplorable.

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While I question some of your blue state living off the work of red states assertions (though perhaps not all) I completely concur with the idea of just transition. However, there must also be a certain flexibility on the part of workers in agreeing to retraining. My son-in-law has worked his entire working life in Wyoming coalfields. At this point, he has more than two decades of experience with driving heavy earthmoving equipment. In my humble opinion, he would be an ideal candidate to retrain on similar machines for rebuilding our worn out highway infrastructure. However, if you asked him to leave WY to work in another state, he would dig in his heels and refuse.

As my own family moved many times to follow the construction jobs my father worked, I don't have a great deal of sympathy with the refusal to accept uprooting in order to pursue a good job in a new place. When the two bills on infrastructure pass (fingers crossed) the opportunities for retraining into well-paying jobs will be myriad.

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I guess I am one of those coastal elites who just suffered through three days of a heat dome, including 117 in Salem, Oregon, which is a record for west of the Cascades. I spent my working life in a small rural town and I am very cognizant about problems in rural areas. Last fall many of the people in that area lost everything due to terrible forest fires including some that I know. So they too have suffered from the cost of climate change. In addition the whole area was inundated with smoke and ash, rural and urban, all were affected. I support helping all of us gradually transition to other forms of energy, less polluting and not just giving rural areas the brush off. Maybe we could use some of the money to subsidize the workers that we give the fossil fuel industry. I also agree with your point that capital always prevails and workers suffer and not just i rural areas. As for living the good life without a care, we do care. We have solar panels on our roof. We drive a hybrid car mostly in our area, so sometimes we do not refill for six months and get excellent mileage. We shop locally as much as we can, including supporting local farmers and ranchers. When I shop for groceries, I refuse to buy out of season and once again try to buy local products. I might add that sometimes can be difficult because large conglomerates buy up these small companies. We also do not have children, one of the reasons being, that we could see what was coming. Locally, we have an entity called Timber Unity, which is financed out of state and its purpose is to keep rural people stirred up against anything that might gradually change how we do things. After the fires, we donated to the fund to help people in the canyon, most of whom disagree with us politically. There was also a large donation of hay with big Timber Unity signs on it and a political sign from a local R politician who represents an urban area. I was glad that people got hay for their animals, but objected to the donation being political, making political hay, so to speak. In my view donations should just be made without doing this and many people did exactly that. And I am sorry, but I also agree with the person below who points out that money from blue states flows to red states. For the record, I am a history person and I view the wealthy as mostly parasites as they have always been while the little guy suffers and pays taxes. They do know we are in a climate crisis and they think their money will save them.

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I was going to say what Joan Friedman said, but she beat me to it. Biden has talked about creating clean energy jobs over and over.

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Who moved those factories offshore? Was it the workers? Hmmm. Oil is boom and bust, and not sustainable to middle class economic development. More jobs are created than lost, as in California with investments into solar, wind, tidal, much much more. So is that what u mean when you say West Coast elite?

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I do find it hard to believe that the oil field companies did not see the diminishing amount of resources in the ground after decades of drilling. Suddenly, the rug is being pulled out from under oil field workers?? In Alaska, the picture has been clear for years.

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It is certainly true that most coastal elites don't give a thought to the working class, or they'd agitate for greatly reduced immigration of low/no-skilled workers. And I say that as a far lefty in Massachusetts who holds as a core belief that to have a country where people are basically happy would require a huge reduction in inequality and a mending of our shredded social safety net.

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No, of course not. We are still in followup mode I think

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Yes, "in this country", but, this needs to change imho. Gonna take strong leadership, tough choices, civil dialog, but most of all, facts vs fiction.

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Joe Burly.… let me mansplain that to you honey…

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Huh?

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Mo, the North needed the machinery produced cotten.

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I think what you're missing, Joe, is that planning for change really is possible. Not easy, but possible. I live in a coastal state (MA). Not only that, I live on an island in that state. We've known for many years that sea-level rise is real (along with ocean acidification and other unpleasantly portentous things), and we've been planning for it, down to the local level -- and no, it hasn't been easy. It's required organizing, educating, lobbying, and more. What has your community been doing about climate change? What is your state been doing? Inquiring minds really do want to know.

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My community is the reddest of red in Colorado. I guess the planning now is more like disaster planning vs turning the tide, huh?

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We may be able to turn the tide if we redistribute water in the US so that dry states can water their forests. Or another alternative is to desalinate ocean water and use that to water forests. But we can't put the salt back into the ocean, as higher salt levels would be toxic for ocean life.

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From what states would that water flow to "dry" states? The Northeast has essentially been in a drought since 2016.

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I didn't know that the NE has been in a drought. Reservoirs would have be built in states with high levels of rainfall, and then the water would be piped to dry states. I don't know how feasible that would be. Oil travels through pipes across the US. Why not water?

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What if you paid less for cleaner energy than fossil fuels, created more jobs to strengthen the American middle class, and protected the environment so that those tourist continue to come to visit? Seems like a great start to me.

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Yes that sounds good. My issue initially was with creating too strong a distinction between federal lands and the communities that work and maintain them.

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Joe, the distinction is not rural people working the land. The distinction is the oil industry ownership, that unequally distributes benefits (oil royalties) within the western state for their own benefit and not the benefit of all.

These are "public Lands" and shouldn't the "public" benefit from those royalties through investment in the communities where they work so hard? Shouldn't those workers get something in return to make their communities better, more educated, better access to Health Care, better infrastructure?

By diversifying the energy sector we create more jobs and energy prices stabilize or decrease, and that is a huge economic stimulus. More $ to spend on education, health, and leisure. You know, all the things that make life worthwhile.

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I am all for nationalizing the energy sector.

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The taxes the red states pay, by and large, are smaller than the financial support they get from the gov't. The opposite is true of the blue states.

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Without the oil revenues, god forbid, they’d have to invest in education, industry development…you know… the really hard things that make sustainable economies.

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And without oil revenues and royalties, the western Red One Party state would have to raise taxes and or borrow more from the federal government ( borrow from the more economically diverse blue states)

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Some part of this is due to the decoupling of currency from the value of labor though.

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So, your state never received any of the federal highway funds that were distributed throughout the United State for local and statewide highway projects? I doubt that. The first federal legislation to provide funding for roads in each state was signed by President Wilson in 1916. The Federal Highway Trust Fund was enacted in 1956. The history and changes are fairly complex but easily researched online. Funding was/is generally tied into state matching funds and grant funding.

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I never said that. Sorry if I implied it.

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Maybe it would help if we could distinguish between the owners and the employees.

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My blue state is huge on tourism, too, and we also maintain thousands of miles of roads and tourist sites. We don't see federal dollars from extraction fuels.

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A very conservative colleague posted a stilted article against Biden because the oil industry is suffering and gas prices are so high because of Biden, on and on. I replied so maybe the government should quit subsidizing oil companies. Our tax dollars go to support them and they gouge us at the pump. That doesn’t seem right. No response.

Another conservative friend said we’re just going through natural cycle, the Earth does this. So the Earth pulled oil out of the ground, turned it into plastic, and threw it into the ocean the size of Texas and ten miles deep? His wife said I caused him to have a stroke. I didn’t know I was that powerful! Get dumpty on the phone!

The writing is not just on the walls, it’s everywhere. If it’s this bad we may already be too late. It will be hard to change but even harder to find a new planet. Or to become extinct!

Thank you, Heather! Appreciate your insight and continuing the conversations we need to have.

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There is no planet B.....

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Within 100-1000 light years travel distance, we can assuredly find something for a billionnaire or 2

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Let’s pack ‘em up and send ‘em on their way!

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Amen!!

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Jeff Bezos is already on the hunt.

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And so is Richard Branson from something I read recently. (Stuart-was that why you said a billionaire or 2? If so-LOL!)

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I wear those clothes and carry those bags. Not that it does any good.

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OMG. Sorry. I laughed at ¨the stroke¨. It is most likely already too late. I read an article 15+ years ago from a scientist who said the world needed to act at that time, or it would be too late. My husband recently told me that if the earth warms 1 degree more, that´s it. If the oceans continue to warm, the plankton at the bottom of the sea die off. Then fish. It will happen quite quickly.

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That may have been James Hansen, who pretty much predicted the progression of climate change in the 1980s. He also testified to Congress back then, stressing that changes needed to be made. Needless to say, all he got was crickets.

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This is the truly heart-breaking reality, I’m afraid. And on one level, we all know it. We are experiencing existential dread.

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Yes and for many of the deniers their constitution can’t handle that. Denial is a powerful tool human’s alone use.

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Apropos of nothing and everything, I had a beehive completely melt down yesterday. All the honeycomb and brood ended up on the floor of the hive. I’ve never even heard of this happening before.

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That's horrifying. I'm very concerned because I live on the edge of a 2000+ acre forest, bordered as well by a wetland full of birds and mammals but have seen exactly one bumblebee , two tiny wild bees, two butterflies and two dragonflies so far this summer. This extreme lack of pollinating insects is abnormal and very worrisome. I have a huge variety of organically grown native plants and flowers just sitting here waiting.........something is very wrong.

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Direct evidence that there is something very wrong.

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That's horrifying

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The poor bees! Did you water dish help to save any of them?

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The water is helping, yes. The bees are doing their best to salvage the hive. If they lost their queen in the mess, their only hope is if they have some brood less than three days old that they can then make some queen cells and raise some queens.

My neighbor who was a bee inspector for 35 years said he never head of this happening... ever.

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Yours and Beth's accounts are very worrisome, Stephen. I hope your bees can muster a rebound. Fingers crossed.

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That is awful!

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SO sorry. We, all of us beings, are just not really equipped for heat bombs.

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If I could cause a stroke or heart attacks believe me the Ex would have been the first target! 😂

I’m just speaking up and taking up oxygen!

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I just laughed out loud and spit a bit of coffee after reading “ I didn’t know I was that powerful! Get dumpty on the phone! “ 😂👍

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🤣😂🤣😂

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Thank you for your work!

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Way to go for speaking the truth ! (and making me laugh in spite of the serious subject).

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You caught me, Denise. I just copied your counter-arguments for future use elsewhere. The size of Texas, for sure.

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We had all better stroke out Denise. This is the battle of our lifetimes! Big oil has been sucking at the teat of Government forever and now it is time to disconnect or roast. We can already see the battle lines drawn out. Unfortunately theRepublicans probably have found their winning issue. Today HCR has eloquently written about the key problem facing us. Do we gather together to change the climate? Or do we allow the Continued support of a dying industry to the detriment of the world? Climate change will wreck our civilizations. Desertification caused the problems that wracked Syria. Today we read about desertification wreaking havoc in the Pacific Northwest. Heaven help us if we don’t figure this out.

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You’re a rock star 🤩🤩🤩. A few key words well planted.

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Anosognosia is a lack of ability to perceive the realities of one’s own condition. It’s a person’s inability to accept that they have a condition that matches up with their symptoms or a formal diagnosis.

This occurs despite significant evidence of a diagnosis, and despite second and even third medical opinions confirming the validity of a diagnosis.

The strongest symptom of mental illness is anosognosia; it is the biggest obstacle for health care. The strongest condition in a society overtaken by propaganda is that the more effective the propaganda, the less the victims are aware of being victims. Witness North Korea, where a majority of the people show allegiance to their dictator despite the malnutrition and forced labor camps.

Thanks to the 13 billion dollar campaign for climate denial by the Koch brothers et al., half of our country is living in a North Korea of the mind.

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Sounds like the oft old situation ‘put a frog in a pot of hot water and it will jump out very quickly, but put a frog in a pot of tepid water overs a flame and it will stay in the pot feeling warm and cozy , fall asleep and drown!’(My version)!

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Alas, that old adage serves not well. The frog jumps out when it becomes uncomfortably warm, regardless of the circumstances. Were we so wise.

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May I copy and share this with attribution?

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Yes, or course. I think of this space as a commons, to share and share alike.

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Thank you, Jeff.

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Thank you, Jeff. Such an important vocabulary lesson.

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Isnt there ANY way to reach Koch?

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Those few days of record temps in Portland, OR were distressing.

Extractive economies aren’t flexible. However, “a rapid transition to clean energy can stabilize the climate, improve our health, provide good-paying jobs, grow the economy and ensure our children’s future.”

There’s our opportunity to flex and pivot - and evolve. Or else.

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The record temperatures on the Olympic Peninsula were a preview of hell. In addition to cables melting, roads separating and buckling, plants fried...

Haven’t yet heard about, say, apples and cherries, but, like people, vegetation up here is not acclimated to such heat.

Climate Luddites blinded by greed, absence of vision, and an addiction to raping and pillaging the Earth could potentially use this to set off conflagration of militias. Certainly to sow discord and pull energies away from solution-searches.

There are serious challenges with the current levels of minerals and other resources required to harvest and store energy. We desperately need technological innovation and advances.

And, perhaps most seriously, we need ‘lifestyle’ changes that significantly decrease human impact upon the environment.

Mass extinction, indeed, is in our future that is hurtling toward us much faster than we thought. Bless us all, (especially the elves, Joseph!).

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"And, perhaps most seriously, we need ‘lifestyle’ changes that significantly decrease human impact upon the environment."

Absolutely - but we are so trapped, we are unlikely to even start to make a shift. Look at where you live.. (assuming it is a cityscape) - imagine how it will operate on less than 1/10th the current energy. It can't. So we won't shift - as the shift will be so uncomfortable. Politicians are well aware of this. "No one has ever rioted for austerity" (Monbiot).

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I live in a rural area. We will riot for austerity...you have used that quote before and perhaps you just don’t comprehend that the times are, and have been changing. We will work for sustainability and the status quo is not. Uncomfortable, not necessarily. Inconvenient, perhaps. Dead or adapting?

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I comprehend all too bloody well! - I live in a rural area (wet tropics) - and we are beset with not heat but totally unseasonal wet and cloudy weather - we are off grid - but there's f..a. solar energy - even though we have quite a big array. So the poor little gasoline gene is really earning its keep. So much for being fossil fuel free. Normally (pre Global Warming) this was our dry and sunny time. Unfortunately as we run a small research station - we have to keep the lab inside humidity as low as possible - which here is 80% if you are lucky. Poor buggers in California and the west have the reverse - (at least solar could help there). We are doing a great job of "dry-gulching" ourselves. "Smile as you go under" (seen on the back of a Texan 18 wheeler).

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Hugh, where are you?

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16.088. 145.455. www.austrop.org.au - and it's bloody raining 86mm last 24H.

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It was the imposition of an supplementary eco-tax on petrol and diesel fuels that got the "Gilet Jaunes" going in France...a very rural combustion!

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I suspect, this may become a major dynamic, making it difficult to get real changes - it just underscores my comment earlier - that we are too comfortable (or expect to get more comfortable) and will fight any measure that appears to thwart this aspiration.

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See the above.

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First you say “we are unlikely” to shift or even start to shift and then assume someone is in a cityscape (which they are not) and then you conclude “we won’t shift”…too uncomfortable. And then your used again austerity quote. For second time today I ask you… Surely you jest?

Your comments run roughshod over personal experience of people at times. I don’t get your intent.

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Christine, I am not jesting. While some people (and probably including myself) may have contrary experiences, I can assure you that the great (vast) majority don't. Don't conflate the experiences and attitudes of the few, with that of the many (8 bloody billion of them).

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Your math does not add up. Nor your “conflation”. Nor your British bloody slang.

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Nor your assuring anything.

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I really love those cherries! Super foods, along with the apples. This vegan waits for the new crops every year. I’m really going to miss them...

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Eating them at this very moment. Here in Spain the fruit is like when my mom was little. Direct from the farm.

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It does feel as if we are in one of our dystopian novels or movies.. we have been the frog in the pot of heating water and now it beginning to boil.

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Interesting you should bring up dystopian novels! I just did further up at about the same instant as you did!

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Production of electricity through alternate means in the extractive industry dominated States is of course absolutely possible. Wind, sun...you name it. The question to be asked however is..... "what do you use the electricity for?"

Much as it is desireable in climate terms, the end of fossil fuel extraction in the producing States creates a dilemma. To schematize simplistically their view of the economic cycle, electric power is first used to power industry, however it is generated, and that value added output gives jobs to people who then use even more electricity for domestic and civic purposes. The question that the current "oil states" ask themselves is..... "how many people can the pure generation of electricity support without the downstream chemical bi-product industry that oil and gas facilitate?". Such downstream industries are sometimes not found in the extraction state and oil and gas are merely piped, shipped, trucked out to other states with the consequently lower employment generation. Windmills and solar panels are not currently made in the extraction states and probably never will be. It could be that Texas sees its problem very clearly as being represented by the current population trends in windy rural counties in North Dakota that have consistently lost population to the oil areas and the cities for the last century. How many people could Texas support without the oil and gas? If all they are doing is transmitting their electricity into a national grid....once they have been connected and accepted federal regulation, that is...how many jobs are left? Those of the people who can, move to where the jobs will be. Those that can't get poorer and need retraining for different functions. Less revenus for the States and a great deal more expense and hardship. The people moving and remaining will tend to be city dwellers.....urbanized democratic voters. Doesn't look like a good scenario for the Republicans as they can see the declining levels of the population that they would actually be able to control.

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The extractive companies are going after a finite resource. When that resource is used up, those companies pack up and move on. The folks who can’t or won’t move are left to deal with what remains behind such as abandoned mines. Neither the companies or the local populations think long term while things are going well. The locals feel abandoned when the companies move on. Change always happens; question is how to deal with that change.

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Sounds a lot like West-by God- Virginia, doesn't it?

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but all that is predicted for after the next election so no politicians do anything about it.

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You should see the wind farms in north Texas. Wind energy is booming in Texas. Here's an article on one of the largest: https://www.power-technology.com/projects/roscoe-wind-farm/ Built with German technology.

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Interesting phrase ‘downhill industries’! In many instances, today the jobs for today’s workforce did not exist 5 years ago! The technology sector is continuously creating new jobs in startup companies! The ‘downhill industries’ now exist as spin-offs created to augment a sector of an existing industry which relies on technology! In Texas , as you point out, the city of Austin has become an investment firm favored locale! Perhaps, oil and gas money are part of the lure, but technology allows world wide investment management from remote locales!

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for "downhill" obviously read "downstream"

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Back in 1973 when I was in grad school, I had a class where the text was "The Limits To Growth," published by The Club of Rome. The book was very controversial then, with the "usual suspects" denouncing it as communist, et., etc. What it did was analyze several then-existing environmental problems, and look at what the results would be 20 years out of working to solve it, something but not much, or doing nothing. A couple years ago I ran across my copy when going through boxes in the garage and re-read it. *Every* scenario in which they had looked at what the situation would be if nothing was done - was the current reality! And it wasn't a nice future they had predicted.

Unfortunately, organized labor is one of those forces that works against change. Back in 1973, I came within a vote of killing San Onofre nuclear power plant "in its cradle." My then boss, a member of the San Francisco Board of Supervisors, was the Chairman of the Coastal Commission, which had to vote to allow construction, since the damned thing is in the coastal zone. I had come to the conclusion that nuclear power was the opposite of what the industry said it was, and just on the question of where do you put garbage that has a toxic half life three times longer than the entire recorded history of the human race, the industry was a killer. I had my boss ready to cast the vote that would deny the permit. And then... the head of the California AFL-CIO called him and reminded him that he had plans to run for a statewide office the next year, which he could kiss good-bye if he voted to "kill all them jobs." In fact, there never were 35,000 jobs (there never are), and now that the plant has been shut down, they're trying to figure out what to do with all the garbage that has to be kept away from the environment for three times longer than recorded human history.

Just like the unions fought for the pipeline Biden finally killed - "all them jobs" were never the numbers the companies dangled in front of the union leaders. They never are,

I remember back in 1967, getting in an argument with my cousin, who was at the time Secretary of the Alameda County Machinist's Union, who had said they supported the war because it "was good for all them jobs." I asked him if his members were OK with sacrificing the sons for their jobs. We never spoke again.

Organized labor has never been able to see beyond the end of its nose, which is why it has ended up on the wrong side so often, and why it's practically killed itself now. "All them union jobs" Biden's touting are likely not the "real" numbers either.

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TC, as the granddaughter of a coal miner who did labor organizing in secret, I do understand your post. Yet, I would like to know what should have happened in the first 30 years of the 20th century in regard to how coal operators and railroad executives used human beings to mine fossil fuel no matter the cost? (Never met my grandfather as he died of black lung disease). If not unions, then what? I own over 300 acres of coal and natural gas in WV along with more heirs but I always vote for keeping it all in the ground. Please, I'm not being oppositional to your post, TC, I just would love to know what is the alternative to unions? My grandfather organized in secret via a men's secret society. Just the name of that group opens up a can of whoop ass on me but here goes... Order of the Redmen's Society. It did originate with first Americans among their members too. My uncle was President of two major coal companies during his career. He negotiated with John L. Lewis and they actually liked each other. Again, I am anti-fossil fuel as I can be. I don't want folks still living up the holler to turn on their faucet and have fracking chemicals and/or fire spewing out. I just believe in staying here, in the USA, resisting the R's and trying to make this country a better place. Yep. I'm staying and trying.

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Excellent question because it is an essential question. It makes me think. Thank you and thank you for caring about your neighbors and the planet.

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Thank you Pamsy. Actually, they are "neighbors" in that they still reside near my mother's homeplace. But, our Great Great Grandfather disallowed having the mineral rights to be sold. The surface land was sold. I just think of those who still live there and I want the best for them. Some of the heirs wanted fracking but fortunately that hasn't been agreed upon by all.

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Thank you, Carla, for your post. I believe in staying here, too. Nice to know you'll be hanging around with me trying to fix things!

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Hi Lynell! I always enjoy and learn from your posts. Thank you! Oh, and Good Morning, Lynell!

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Good morning Lynell, good morning Carla.

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Morning, Carla!! Thank you for your "thank you!"

Had a power interruption yesterday (Wednesday), so no internet, no nothing! So quiet when all the "lights" go out.

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Morning Glory, Lynell! Sorry about your loss of power though. My Dad used to always say "Morning Glory!"

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"Morning Glory," I like it! My dad (a rough, tough cream puff) used to say, "Here's your hat, what's your hurry?" We loved him anyway!

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In terms of the Unions, the pendulum has no doubt swung too far to favour the capitalist resulting in poor growth of the hourly wage, disappearance of high wage sectors and significant increases in return on capitral...profits. Time to return to...or aspire to...a situation where mutual respect meant and acceptance of the role and "reasonability" of the other dominated the open, frank discussions. Germany is perhaps a case to look at.

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I so agree. Corporations are not the same has people but since "Citizens United" opened the floodgates it seems that now dark money is drowning us and simultaneously burning up the planet. Drowning juxtaposed with burning...

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Unions provided equal pay for women in teaching.

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‘Organized labor….has never….nose’! You realize that only one example is needed to prove your ‘never’ statement false ! I am that example. My father worked in the Brooklyn Navy Yard as a union electrician during ‘The war, WWII). During His generation the rise of unionized labor provided wages which enabled the housing boom of the post war era. The economic growth of America over the 50’s and 60’s was significantly influenced people working in unionized jobs receiving a living wage! I am an example because my father’s work enabled me to live in a house all my life, earn several college degrees, have a rewarding career as a secondary school educator for more than 40 years and comfortably retire!

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Organized labor shot itself in the foot when they resisted civil rights. American unions have never (and this can be demonstrated) looked at the issues they want to fix with any long-term vision.

The union I've been a member of for 35 years has consistently shot itself in the foot looking at short-term solutions. Every time they went for a short-term solution, that bit of technology they wanted a piece of went obsolete within a few years. In the meantime they held two strikes that gave management the opportunity to gut the underlying system that provided the members with their real income.

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The "gift that keeps on giving". San Onofre was closed in 2012 because of a "small leak". It remains closed because of faulty replacement equipment by contractors. There's an ongoing fight about storage of the fuel immediately adjacent to the Pacific Ocean and major population centers. Now the fight is over decommissioning it though not opposition to decommissioning but a lawsuit to stop the Coastal Commission for decommissioning in order to ensure that it's done in a safe manner, a not unreasonable perspective given the failures related to repairing the "small leak". https://www.kpbs.org/news/2021/jun/22/lawsuit-stop-san-onofre-nuclear-power-plant/

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Every time I read this news I want to scream. We coulda... shoulda...

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And I left out that the fault lies equally with the failure of regulatory oversight of the replacement & installation of the fault replacement equipment.

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Well, faults, in the earth, too.

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Barrasso: the Biden administration is “taking a sledgehammer to Western states’ economies.” What kind of economies does he think they'll have in 25-30 years when the landscape is impossible to live on or extract from????? If you scream into the void and there's nobody listening, do you make a sound? That's what it feels like to the millions on the globe who are paying attention. I heard an interview with a guy who writes on the fossil fuel industry saying that we won't be able to just quit fossil fuels - they will be with us for decades. Then he said nobody was really talking about this until the past few years! I almost wrecked the car I was driving at the time. "No one's been talking about this???" What??? Al Gore wrote 'Inconvenient Truth in, what? 1999?? The fact that the GOP has had their collective fingers in their ears for 40 years doesn't mean 'nobody was talking about this'.

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Don`t these lobbyists and those in the companies they work for have children? Grandchildren?

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I agree: Political figures like the Governor of Florida are accessories to global genocide – their puppet masters in the fossil fuel industry, the perpetrators.

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It seems like DeSantis wishes only the worst for everyone. Does the man have an original thought or does he do only what others tell him to do?

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Do the President or VP have original thoughts? Is Governor DeSantis your replacement for Trump?

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go organize an art exhibition. doesn't require much original thinking.

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Do you have air conditioning, heat? Where do electric cars get energy when the owners insert a cable plug into a socket? When Texas iced over in 2020, there was little sun for solar energy, and many of the windmills were unusable. People froze to death in their homes. Who was the puppet master? Who orchestrated disaster and misery? Please stop using socialist propaganda to describe rank incompetence. Look around.

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not an informed comment. Plop.

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Not to worry, Gailee. I have no children, nor do I have any nieces or nephews for which to leave a better planet. But we did just purchase solar panels for our home. So there, I've fixed it for their children and grandchildren. Hope this helps!

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Their children are the future lobbyists and workers in those companies.

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Yes! It’s a family affair!

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There will be no world living in then.

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They have money and they THINK money can insulate them from ANYTHING. That's what some dystopian fiction is based on; the rich, at least for a while, thinking they have beaten the odds, while the masses toil, suffer and die.

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And it can, for awhile. I watched this happen at my workplace this year, an elite private boarding school. Because there was plenty of money for all sorts of housing accomodations to promote distancing, and lots and lots of surveillance testing of all sorts, doubling up on health center staff, etc., we were able to be open to our students from all over the world for the entire school year. Insulated is a good word for what they were!

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Exactly. Daria! This is part and parcel with their overall hubris that tells them 'taxes are for the little people" (Leona Helmsly) and all the rest who think they are 10' tall and bullet-proof. "Money can't buy me love.........." Or clean water, or food, or clean air.............

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How insulated is Bezos? Zimmerman? How much do they pay lawyers to do their taxes and get those refunds? A CEO who thinks his board can't replace him because he is ten feet tall will be replaced very soon. Most CEOs walk a line between bankruptcy and success. What would you pay if you were in power? What does AOC pay in taxes?

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Besides, money is just not tasty or nutritious

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Except to the ego, apparently. 😒

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Sigh.

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Lobbyists persuade lawmakers. That is all they do for a living. What they earn supports their families and communities. Some lobbyists support your ideas. Some don't. How easily are your representatives persuaded by lobbyists?

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The building collapse in Surfside is a tragedy. It is also a reminder. It reminds us of the need for the infrastructure improvements that President Biden seeks. To the extent that the building collapse is a product of sea level changes that come from climate change, it is also a warning of more troubles to come. lenspoliticalnotes.com

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Also, Leonard, we cannot keep building on what are essentially barrier islands along the Florida coast. Holding back an ocean is a sysyphean project. We do need infrastructure improvements in our country, no question. At the same time we need to examine the decisions (State and mainly County levels) that bring in short term economic benefits (taxes, tourism) but a long term, irreparable, environmental and human damage. Throwing good money at bad planning is endlessly futile.

There is so much unsustainable new construction going on in Florida right now....building on coasts, wetlands--all fragile areas. We already have salt water intrusion in our upper aquifer so, despite being a peninsula surrounded by water, we will be dealing with future water shortages for all the thousands who move here each week-- not to mention the toilets!! Saltwater conversion and other renewable efforts cannot keep pace. Lots of lifestyle changes are in our near future. Disney has put up 500 acres of solar panels on one side of SR 429; the other side is being cleared for thousands of new housing units. Something has to give. Last week it was Surfside. After the " thoughts and prayers" stage will we learn and change? Doubt it.

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The verdict is literally not in on why that collapse happened. Yes, it is being investigated and a grand jury called and several lawsuits filed. It appears it was neglect of crumbling concrete/rebar & an assortment of problems that were not addressed for years & got triggered one nite, but nothing conclusive yet.

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Rob, point taken. I just wonder if all the pylons could have given away at once or did the ground give way (sink hole like cave -in) causing the entire structure to collapse as one. The reports of the ground opening up by the pool just before the building went make me think there was a catastrophic event like that.

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Re sinkhole by the pool - my impression from watching broadcast news is that the underground garage is/was below the pool area and the building itself. I find the sinkhole theory unrealistic (from my admittedly layperson's perspective) if there is old coral below the sand/ground surface. Part of the garage collapsing into itself seems as if it could have been a man-made sinkhole.

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Hi Judith, Yes, so many possible factors feeding into this catastrophe. It may end up being a confluence of things--next door construction, roof work, 40 years of harsh environment material degradation, ground collapse--all contributing to that building pancaking down. It appears to be a single moment but maybe just many smaller moments adding up. It will be critical to know! But, even when we know, barrier islands are largely erosionable sand dunes and not stable ground for building. ( imho)

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Carol…I’m a Glorida resident but am vacationing g now in Midwest. Have talked to several people at reunion that commented “it was a sinkhole under the pool area” or something like that. I asked every time “why do you say that?” Response always was something like “it makes sense….Florida has lots of sink holes….OR….a sink hole will be blamed so no one is held responsible.”

😳

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Hi Christine, A few days ago I read a report from a man whose wife is among the missing. He was out of town but was on the phone with her around the time of the collapse when she told him she saw a hole opening up by the pool. Then the phone went dead. As I posted to Rob, it is hard to imagine ALL the pylons giving away at exactly the same time. The building went straight down as if the ground gave way.

He is right, though; we will not have a definitive answer for awhile. Right now the focus is on finding any survivors and recovering bodies. Such a tragedy! But even if it is determined that a sinkhole or ground collapse was the cause there is still the accountability for building permit, design and maintenance in what is an incredibly harsh and fragile piece of land/sand.

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*Florida

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We understood. Happens all the time!

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Rob. Have appreciated your “there” reporting since the start. Thank you.

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Your daily updates are eye- opening.

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