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Miles Grant's Posts


The incredible shrinking tent

Republican counter-strategy on climate: Revenge!

How much smaller can the climate denial tent get? We’re about to find out. With companies as diverse as Nike, Johnson & Johnson and Ford Motor Company having joined the call for comprehensive clean energy & climate legislation, the Republican Party has come up with its counter-strategy: “To fight bill, GOP turns on business,” declares the headline in today’s Politico, citing a Double-Secret Probation Leaked Memo from Republican staffers for the Senate Committee on Environment and Public Works. (The lesson: If you want people to read your memo, pretend it’s secret, then “leak” it to anyone who’ll take it.) Earlier …


Chamber vs. Chamber

It’s hard to listen to someone complain about getting dumped. "Why won’t she come back? Doesn’t she know I can change? Just give me one more chance!" Lots of difficult questions with painful answers you’d really rather not get into. Which is why it was really hard to sit at the US Chamber of Commerce’s energy "dialogue" Wednesday morning in Washington, listening to polluters bemoan America's momentum towards climate action amid the Chamber's public split on the issue. Johnson & Johson, Nike and other members delivered a stinging rebuke on the Chamber’s climate obstruction last week. Then on the day …


Six degrees of ExxonMobil

Revealing skeptics as sock puppets in a few quick clicks

Want to play a fun Friday game? It's called Six Degrees of ExxonMobil. The object: To see how quickly you can get from a denier to ExxonMobil's coffers. All you need to start is an opinion piece by a global warming denier. Let's take this column by Deroy Murdock for Scripps Howard News Service (he's also a contributing editor for the National Review Online). OK, let's start. Deroy Murdock is a media fellow with the Hoover Institution on War, Revolution and Peace at Stanford University. The Hoover Institution has received at least $295,000 from ExxonMobil since 1998. Wow, wasn't that …

Read more: Uncategorized


Be green, get rich?

Budget-saving tips awfully similar to planet-preserving prescriptions

Who are you to deny me my two-car garage filled with junk, an elegant dining room I'll never use, and massive heating/cooling bills? That's the basic response from critics when greens question McMansions in particular and our consumer culture in general. I mean, isn't newer, bigger, better the American way? Didn't President Bush urge us to go shopping more? But one financial advisor says trying to look rich by buying so much stuff is keeping some Americans from being rich. And while he never once mentions the environment, his prescriptions for building your savings have a lot in common with …

Read more: Living


You know the drill

Congress goes back to work on energy

Before Congress' recess, a minority of lawmakers continued to block critical measures that could help break America's addiction to oil, give consumers real energy choices, recharge our economy, and help solve global warming. Legislation to extend production tax credits for solar, wind, geothermal, and other renewable sources passed the House again and again only to fall short each time in the Senate. Once the legislation fell just a single vote short, with 59 senators voting to end a filibuster. This week, the House goes back to work with the Senate following suit shortly thereafter. But will the outcome this time …


Double pandered

Media focuses on high costs of clean energy, but gives nuclear a free pass

When the media talks about clean energy, it usually deals with the cost issue with a rational, balanced analysis. Something along the lines of, say, "It's so expensive!" Yet somehow, in Keith Johnson's Environmental Capital blog post today slamming greens for not supporting nukes, the cost issue is little more than an afterthought. The nuclear industry wants $50 billion in loan guarantees? Hardly seems worth mentioning. A full 320 words into a 346 word post, Johnson shares this insight: Plus, nuclear power's not cheap. Oh, really? Glad he managed to squeeze that five-word footnote in. Johnson also finds the space …

Read more: Climate & Energy


Like there are so many other reasons to visit the barren tundra?

Alaska claims protecting wildlife would hurt tourism

Somehow this one went under my radar last week, but I couldn't let it slip by: WASHINGTON (Reuters) -- The state of Alaska has sued the U.S. government, arguing that listing polar bears as a threatened species will hurt Alaskan oil and gas exploration, fisheries and tourism. The lawsuit, filed on Monday in federal court in Washington, seeks the withdrawal of a May 14 decision to list the big Arctic bears as threatened under the Endangered Species Act because climate change is melting their sea ice habitat. [...] "Additional regulation of the species and its habitat under the Endangered Species …

Read more: Politics


What's in a name?

Big Oil tries to hide behind an acronym

Ever watch the cable news networks during the afternoon? You're bombarded with issue ad after issue ad. Well, imagine that every TV and radio station was like that 24 hours a day. That's local media here in D.C. And since the climate and energy debate began in earnest on Capitol Hill last summer, it seems like you can't get through one commercial break without hearing GM or Big Oil explain how they don't need big government telling them what to do (unless, of course, big government wants to tell them to drill for more oil). Every morning over breakfast, WTOP …

Read more: Politics


Wait till next year

Netroots Nation pledges to cut footprint … in 2009

Five pounds of stuff. That's what greeted me at this year's Netroots Nation '08 conference in Austin, Texas. As is the case with most conventions, registration came with a schwag bag loaded with magazines, pamphlets, and assorted trinkets from sponsors. I took the bag back to my hotel room and unpacked it one piece at a time, spreading the contents on my bed. (I actually had to stand on a chair to get a wide enough view to get all the schwag in one shot.) While most liberal and green conventions these days make at least token efforts to ease …

Read more: Living


Newt's got a song

Will Washington buy his brand of snake oil?

One of the all-time great episodes of The Simpsons is "Marge vs. the Monorail," written by Conan O'Brien. The EPA fines Mr. Burns for dumping nuclear waste, leading to an unexpected cash windfall for Springfield. Marge suggests spending the money to repair the town's tattered infrastructure. But just as her proposal is about to pass, a fast-talking charlatan named Lyle Lanley arrives and sells the ever-gullible people of Springfield on a plan to build a monorail, climaxing with the monorail song (sung to the tune of "Trouble" from The Music Man). As the monorail plan passes, Marge remains unconvinced: Marge: …