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Greenpeace Gives Democratic Platform C+ on Climate, Calling for 'Action at the Scale That Science and Justice Demand'

Originally published at http://www.commondreams.org/news/2020/08/19/greenpeace-gives-democratic-platform-c-climate-calling-action-scale-science-and


The way he lies about his grades in law school, Uncle Joe will start telling people that he got the highest grade that Greenpeace ever gave out:



CALIFORNIA ON FIRE and I don’t see one mention of Global Warming –
Elect Biden/Harris but then be prepared to come out into the streets to push



I’d give Greenpeace only a ‘C-Minus’ on their assessment, unfortunately.

The DNC platform - Fail !


I’ve just finished my second read of Paul Wignall’s magnificent book on mass extinctions of the past, “The Worst of Times” (2015 - Princeton University Press).

I am a geologist, and a lifelong student of mass extinctions.

Things have changed. At one time the past was our best way of assessing the present modern era of human induced climate change and alteration of our world at the scale of a force of nature, such as the Large Igneous Provinces of the time when the supercontinent Pangea existed - the primary focus of Paul Wignall’s treatise.

Model’s are of limited use - being only approximations to reality at best - something the polymath Freeman Dyson pointed out long ago.

But we are approaching the point now, with the volume of first class research that has been done on past extinctions, where we may be able to assess the present in terms of first principles. This progress will I hope continue.

First, I would like to share a paragraph from the last pages of “The Worst of Times”, and then I would like to offer a personal assessment of what to do:

"In the oceans, the clear story from past mass extinctions is that global warming goes hand in hand with oxygen starvation and that both are very bad for life. The modern oceans are showing the first signs of these changes, and modeling predictions suggest that we mat be only a few hundred years away from seeing large expanse of anoxic waters develop. The effect on sea life will not be good, although by then massive overfishing will probably already have destroyed most ecosystems as we currently know them." (p. 175 hardcover edition).


Note the text in bold !

Our problems are much more immediate than future climate change - something all devotees of this website are surely aware of in spades.

So concentrating on climate change, or this or that thread of the minute problem is only serving to distract us from the real picture - a society run amok - in danger of self annihilation by our own hand.

The cause(s) ???

Here is where I step out of my depth - but then who is there who has the depth, I wonder ???

  1. I am thinking the large publicly traded corporation and all the infrastructure supporting it - the laws which make a corporate entity a ‘person’ in the eyes of the legal system - these corporations must go the way of the Dodo bird.

  2. Theoretically one could enact “Rights for the Environment” worldwide - and thus check the externalization of these massive extra-national companies.

  3. But my sense is we are just playing a game we cannot win - same for the Green New Deal - which is just greenwashed capitalism.

No - if we are to survive we really do need a new way of living - a ‘lifeway’ something like that portrayed on the movie “Avatar” ~

  1. No job should pay less than a true living wage.

  2. All jobs should be as close to essential as possible - ditch the trivial, the advertising industry altogether, and so on.

This might be an invitation to brainstorming - doubtless there are ideas out there I haven’t considered properly ?
@economagic @Earthbound


when your party is controlled by corporate interests(similar to if not the same as the Republicans)what do you expect???


What does the C+ represent?

"Complicit with the Fossil Fuel Industry" plus, intentionally deceptive to the voting electorate?


See: 1992 World Scientists Warning to Humanity – which offers a full list of ALL
of the changes which must be made – including overturning poverty and all of the
oppressions, especially of women worldwide.

That’s just the human side of it – it lists all of NATURE which has been under attack
and the existing problems - species destruction, etc.



My reading of the FDR New Deal, from John Kenneth Galbraith and other sources, is that FDR wanted to save capitalism from itself - which it did.

But it did not save the economy of the times - what did that was WW II.
@economagic @Earthbound

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Yes - but long lists are just that - too long.

We need to place humans first - which will mean in balance with the natural word.

Greenpeace also considers whether they will “advance a Green New Deal, including mobilizing towards 100% renewable energy for all…”

“Renewable” is an arbitrary marketing term. With respect to climate and ocean acidification, it is an irrelevant attribute. The metric that counts is how clean the energy is (ie. low GHG emissions).

Jiang said. “We thought the party that claims it wants to lead our country into the future had moved beyond a middle of the road approach to the climate crisis.”

More fool you.

that doesn’t mean the Democrats can take their feet off the gas

Unfortunate metaphor. It’s a term that’s probably overdue for a technology update anyway. (Should have been updated with diesels.) I’m currently leaning toward calling it the “drive” pedal. Tied for distant second would be either “power” pedal or “thrust” to borrow an aviation term. (“Accelerator” is clunky, and really only applies when speeding up. Also, the brake pedal is technically an accelerator pedal too. “Throttle” is an archaic term specific to carburetors, and it was always backwards anyway–to throttle means to choke or constrict, so “full-throttle” is actually when there is the least amount of throttling.)


"Just the thought of being in a crisis that we cannot buy, build or invest our way out of seems to create some kind of collective mental short circuit."
~ Greta Thundberg et al
@SuspiraDeProfundis @ReconFire


So you view this as being something that can be accomplished quickly? (And presumably on a global scale.)

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Give it a try – this is a very intelligent bit of writing –

And it is organized very clearly by HEADINGS which make everything easy to understand –
get into the details only if you really want to –

Immediately after there was SILENCE from the press – and you will realize why when
you look at the headings –

1992 World Scientists’ Warning to Humanity | Union of …

~www.ucsusa.org /resources/ 1992 - world - scientists

Some 1,700 of the world’s leading scientists , including the majority of Nobel laureates in the sciences , issued this appeal in November 1992 . The World ScientistsWarning to Humanity was written and spearheaded by the late Henry Kendall, former chair of UCS’s board of directors.


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We all need to wake up to the reality that it is NATURE IN CHARGE –
MOTHER NATURE – and she does not require changes in laws or other
delays to show us what needs to be done – and since she has been warning
us since the 1880’s at minimum – the actions now may be concluding actions …

Notice there was NO law demanding that we take our gasoline driven cars off of our
roadways, but it happened –

And during that time we should have been RE-ENGINEERING those cars to Electric –
but that didn’t happen either because there was no organized government demand or
assistance to do that –

We are going to have to use our own natural intelligence, common sense gumption to
begin to advance the changes we know must come –

We are going to end up in our towns/communities controlling this –
which is why the GOP has already moved to take over our Town Hall Meetings.
See: “Dark Money”

Greenpeace probably should not be grading this on a curve.


You (we) are not going to accomplish much at all if you do not win the election. Sometimes you have to be slightly more subtle than the yelping of impurity every chance you get.

Translation: sure, you can bitch & complain enough and you get Trump. How does that work for climate?

No - it’s more like a thought experiment - instead of focusing on things that are equally improbable - like getting agreement on climate change at the scale required

I’ve run my own private successful corporation, without ever having to advertise or abuse employees. I’ve also been a stockbroker (briefly - until I saw it for what it is).

This comment by the ever prescient Greta sums it up nicely.

Planet of the Humans explores the problem in detail.

We need to downsize - and to NOT do AUSTERITY !

If there is a solution at all - we need to increase revenues to cover all costs of society.

It goes something ike this - what I am advocating:

Neither a Borrower Nor a Lender Be

Origin of Neither a Borrower Nor a Lender Be

This is a famous… said by Polonius in Act-I, Scene-III of [William Shakespeare], [Hamlet] . The [character] Polonius counsels his son Laertes before he embarks on his visit to Paris. He says, “Neither a borrower nor a lender be; / For loan oft loses both itself and friend.” It means do not lend or borrow money from a friend, because if you do so, you will lose both your friend and your money. If you lend, he will avoid paying back, and if you borrow you will fall out of your savings, as you turn into a spendthrift, and face humiliation.


My thoughts, for what they are worth - are this - What we just did - to 'save the economy !

You can’t do that.

First - it is unsustainable.

Second - the ‘economy’ - most of it is not in any sense an economy in the original Greek sense of the word. It is instead a zero sum game - and as sure as some of the laws of physics - it is guaranteed to see most all lose - and a very few gain (moneywise).

In the end - everyone loses - the rich will die just as surely as the poor.

A grade of C means average, which is not nearly good enough to the do the job. The DNC gets an F, which in reality is not the much lower of a grade than most other plans to address the climate and ecological crises.

There just so many things we can do to help address this but the inertia of monied interests trying to defend their turf means little will get done as they have bought the Politicians.

So as example you speak of re-engineering cars to Electric. Yes that one of the steps but why cars?

One of the major reasons we have so many cars on the road is so people can commute to and from work. Now some might think this means the solution more mass transit but why do we COMMUTE to work?

It generally because of the ways cities are designed. There are neighborhoods deemed wealthy and these have very expensive land and houses. At the same time there might be jobs in those neighborhoods that are low or middle waged and do not pay the worker enough so they can live near where they work. Those people buy homes many miles away and everyday drive to and from work.

To help illustrate what I get at (and yes we need to go further in that I believe we ultimately have to rid our selves of the notion of “rich” and “poor” and equalize wealth) imagine there an economy where 50 percent low class , 40 percent middle class and 10 percent upper class.

Housing in that neighborhood should match that distribution. 50 percent should be affordable by the low class , 40 percent by the middle class and 10 percent up the upper class. People should be able to walk to work or work from home.

In such a world huge monies are saved on infrastructure , massive amounts saved because of cleaner air, less accidents less noise and so on.

The reason this does not happen is not that it can not be done. It happens because people in rich neighborhoods do not want to see housing prices go lower because poor people live in the same neighborhood.

This just one thing we can do. There literally thousands and more ways we can address this.


I can envision a time when politicians are stripped of their power - when something like the National Academy of the Sciences needs to endorse and approve bills which affect sustainability.

It is unthinkable that this should come to pass - but then what is happening with Covid was unthinkable only seven months ago.

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