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Joe Biden is Finally Talking About Fossil Fuels—That’s a Good Thing

Originally published at http://www.commondreams.org/views/2020/10/23/joe-biden-finally-talking-about-fossil-fuels-thats-good-thing

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Oh, talk is so cheap; especially when some politician speaks.

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Oh, Jamie, honey, we’ve been down this road before—you’re just too young to know. Promises by a corporatist neoliberal nice guy are meaningless. Time and time again that’s proven fact. Listen to GenXers who’ve had this smoke blown up our butts our entire lives.

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“I don’t imagine that Joe Biden is suddenly going to become a Keep It In the Ground activist during these final days on the campaign trail-”

That is wise “imagin[ing],” Mr. Henn.

After all, in the absence of any actual progressive demands that Biden represent them, what imaginable reason WOULD Biden’s right liberal Democratic Party machine have to go in such a progressive direction?

“(although a man can dream)”

Totally, dream on, Mr. Henn.

  • Lol.

Biden will have lots of volunteers that want to become “energy czar.”

I said exactly what this article says the other night. On a debate stage, in front of millions, Biden defended a 2035 transition date, which is exactly what he and Sanders agreed to in their climate plan. For everyone here calling him a phony, why did he do this? He wasn’t particularly articulate—he never is—but he could have taken the easy out and didn’t. That’s notable.

I am no mind reader, by why would it not be the usual–it’s an election year, he wants votes, his own policies are unpopular, in three weeks there will be no business-as-usual way to hold him to much, and because such things have worked for him and his associates over and over over the decades?

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It would have been way easier to just tell Trump “no” when Trump said he was going to close the oil industry. Instead, he went out of his way to defend the position openly in front of millions. You never give the opposition a new tool to work with two weeks before an election–Biden did. I doubt he would have lost any votes if he had softballed an answer like “we need oil, but we need to reduce our use of it,” but he was direct and emphatic in a way that talkingheads assumed he made a mistake. It clearly caught Trump by surprise–just watch it. Hell, it caught me by surprise. I think he deserves credit for it, he did not have to risk an answer that could risk voters in states like Texas, but he did.

Oh, and a lot of Biden’s policies are popular. If what you say is correct, the 2035 transition target he defended is going to get him votes, right?

Stopping emissions by 2050 is too late.
“Net zero” is code for using offsets and nonexistent carbon capture and supposedly non-dirty coal and gas to pretend they’ve gotten to (or are even aiming at) actual zero.

“over time, over time” is doubling down on meaning “actually, never”; It’s kicking the can down the road to where it’s someone else’s problem.

83% of USers think the world should run completely on renewable energy.
~https://3ohkdk3zdzcq1dul50oqjvvf-wpengine.netdna-ssl.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/11/Clean-energy-support-per-country.png

~https://www.windpowerengineering.com/orsted-new-survey-shows-strong-support-clean-energy-u-s/

81% of Americans support an ambitious Green New Deal
92% of Democrats, 64% of Republicans
Yale U Program on Climate Change Communication and George Mason U
~https://www.commondreams.org/news/2018/12/20/progressives-accuse-steny-hoyer-trying-kneecap-green-new-deal-committee-shield?cd-origin=rss&utm_term=Progressives%20Accuse%20Steny%20Hoyer%20of%20Trying%20to%20Kneecap%20Green%20New%20Deal%20Committee%20to%20Shield%20Fossil%20Fuel%20Execs&utm_campaign=Less%20Than%2024%20Hours%20to%20Save%20Net%20Neutrality%20%7C%20News%20%2526%20Views%20&utm_content=email&utm_source=Daily%20Newsletter&utm_medium=Email&cm_mmc=Act-On%20Software--email--Less%20Than%2024%20Hours%20to%20Save%20Net%20Neutrality%20%7C%20News%20%2526%20Views%20-_-Progressives%20Accuse%20Steny%20Hoyer%20of%20Trying%20to%20Kneecap%20Green%20New%20Deal%20Committee%20to%20Shield%20Fossil%20Fuel%20Execs

[Pew found ] [1] that among Democrats, trust in science on climate issues went by education. More educated Democrats trusted science more. Less educated ones, less. But among Republicans, it didn’t matter how well educated they were. They don’t trust climate science as a matter of ideology.
~https://www.commondreams.org/views/2020/04/06/why-americas-anti-science-and-anti-intellectual-attitudes-doom-it-coronavirus-pearl

[1] ~https://www.pewresearch.org/science/2016/10/04/public-knowledge-about-science-has-a-limited-tie-to-peoples-beliefs-about-climate-change-and-climate-scientists/

But none of that matters; Democrats’ constant trundling along to the right behind the Republicans, Biden’s either pathologically naive or despicably dishonest talk about bipartisanship and the imaginary middle, and the targeted nature of campaign strategies and lies, mean everything Biden says—outside of his demented ramblings—is aimed at a particular group that cares about one issue enough to maybe change their votes to (or not change them from) Biden, in a state that’s on the edge.