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Lisa Hymas' Posts

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Lakoff on Katrina

Framing expert says Katrina shows need for strong, compassionate government

"The Katrina tragedy should become a watershed in American politics," writes lefty framing guru George Lakoff on AlterNet. "This was when the usually invisible people suddenly appeared in all the anguish of their lives -- the impoverished, the old, the infirm, the kids, and the low-wage workers with no cars, TVs, or credit cards. They showed up on America's doorsteps, entered the living rooms, and stayed. Katrina will not go away soon, and she has the power to change America." Lakoff argues that Katrina gives us the perfect opportunity to highlight the "heart of progressive-liberal values," namely "empathy (caring about …

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LCV endorses Maria Cantwell

Green group makes early entry into 2006 election fight

And they're off! The League of Conservation Voters has made its first endorsement for the 2006 election, 14 months ahead of time, throwing its green weight behind Washington state's junior senator, Maria Cantwell, and promising to mount "an aggressive campaign" to reelect the Democrat. Cantwell will need all the help she can get; she's likely in for a tough fight. She won by a teensy margin in 2000, against Slade Gorton, and then proceeded to piss off much of her liberal base in 2002 by voting in favor of the Iraq war resolution. Republicans have determined that hers is one …

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Bush vs. Science

"Is the Bush administration anti-science?" asks Daniel Smith in The New York Times Magazine.   When Donald Kennedy, a biologist and editor of the eminent journal Science, was asked what had led so many American scientists to feel that George W. Bush's administration is anti-science, he isolated a familiar pair of culprits: climate change and stem cells. These represent, he said, "two solid issues in which there is a real difference between a strong consensus in the science community and the response of the administration to that consensus." Smith cites a number of other scientists and advocates who are fed …

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Quote of the day

FEMA chief Michael Brown has been widely excoriated for his pathetically and tragically inept response to Katrina. But lest you think he came to the job unequipped to lead the nation's emergency-response efforts, Kate Hale, former Miami-Dade emergency management chief, points out that his previous experience as a commissioner of the International Arabian Horse Association has come in handy: "He's done a hell of a job, because I'm not aware of any Arabian horses being killed in this storm," she told Knight-Ridder.

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The Onion on biofuels

Amusing, as always.  

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Why CAFTA sucks: Reason #82

Daphne Eviatar spells it out nicely in a Washington Post op-ed: Take the example of the current bid by U.S.-Canadian corporation Glamis Gold Ltd. to mine the ore in Guatemala's Western highlands. Local community and church leaders have vigorously protested the company's plans to dig an open-pit gold and silver mine in the department of San Marcos. They contend that the mining process, which uses cyanide to extract gold from ore, could leach deadly toxins into the surrounding water supply. After construction began in 2004, the indigenous poor -- who make up most of the region's population and depend on …

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Drunken forests and sinking houses

See climate change in action in a series of photos from the Anchorage Daily News (login: mehlman@mailinator.com, password: misteree). They accompany a lengthy article by Doug O'Harra about permafrost warming in Alaska and all heck breaking loose. Earth frozen since woolly mammoths and bison wandered Interior steppes has been turning to mush. Lakes have been shrinking. Trees are stressed. Prehistoric ice has melted underground, leaving voids that collapse into sinkholes. Largely concentrated where people have disturbed the surface, such damage can be expensive, even heartbreaking. It's happening now in Fairbanks: Toppled spruce, roller-coaster bike trails, rippled pavement, homes and buildings …

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Janice Rogers Brown living up to her surname

Controversial judge sides against enviros on mercury regs

Janice Rogers Brown is already proving her worth on the federal bench. Last week, she and her colleague David Sentelle of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia blocked an effort by environmental groups to halt implementation of the Bush administration's much-maligned mercury rules.A legal challenge to the rules brought by enviros, health-advocacy groups, and 14 states will still be heard by the court, but Brown and Sentelle's move means the EPA can proceed in enacting the rules in the meantime. If you'll recall, Brown was one of Bush's most controversial judicial appointments; he had to twist …

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ExxonMobil CEO resigns

Lee Raymond stepping down as head of most eco-unfriendly oil co.

Pollutocrat nonpareil Lee Raymond, CEO and chair of ExxonMobil, today announced his resignation, effective at the end of the year. As chair and CEO of the world's largest publicly traded oil company -- and the most recalcitrant on climate issues -- he consistently appalled green observers with his steadfast denial of any need to curb greenhouse-gas emissions or work toward the goal of U.S. energy independence. From a 2002 interview with Raymond: Q: Isn't it time to join the scientific mainstream in countering the greenhouse effect? A: The mainstream of some so-called environmentalists or politically correct Europeans isn't the mainstream …

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Big papers (finally) taking note of hormone-disrupting chemicals

WSJ, USA Today highlight dangers

The Wall Street Journal astounded many in the green community last week when it launched a series on toxic chemicals with an in-depth page A1 story on endocrine disruptors, which, even in teeny-tiny amounts, muck up the functioning of human bodies, according to an ever-growing body of scientific studies. Now USA Today is getting in on the game with "Are our products our enemy?" Here, reporter Elizabeth Weise's delightfully melodramatic lead: Like the glint of a knife in the dark, a laboratory accident in 1998 helped scientists realize that some chemicals commonly used to make life more convenient can be …

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