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Ted Glick's Posts

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Let a thousand carbon taxes bloom!

Are you frustrated by the inaction in Washington, D.C. on the deepening climate crisis? Are you trying to figure out what more you could do, in addition to what you're already doing, to advance a much-needed clean energy revolution in the USA? Here's an answer: work to enact a local tax on carbon polluters in your area. It can happen, and it doesn't take forever! In May of this year, in Montgomery County, Md., the County Council became the first county government in the country to enact a carbon tax. The owners of an 850 megawatt coal plant in the …

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WE are the "Yes We Can" leaders

It is wonderful and empowering to see the organizing taking place for major mass mobilizations on three consecutive weekends this fall. Some of us, many of us, in the face of a resurgent right-wing movement and disappointment in and/or anger with Obama, are taking to heart the words of early twentieth century labor organizer Joe Hill: "Don't mourn, organize." The first of these mobilizations, Appalachia Rising (www.appalachiarising.org), will take place in Washington, D.C. from September 25-27. Thousands of people, including many from Appalachia, will join together for a two-day, Voices from the Mountains weekend conference, followed by an action on …

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My statement at sentencing

Yesterday, I was sentenced in Washington, D.C. for my conviction on two misdemeanors for hanging "Green Jobs Now" and "Get to Work" banners in the Hart Senate Office Building last September. I was facing up to three years. Instead, Judge Frederick Weisberg sentenced me to one year on probation, 40 hours of community service, an $1100 fine, and 30 days in jail on each count, suspended. To my surprise, I was not sentenced to jail time. The judge did not accept the U.S. Attorney's recommendation that I go to jail for 40 days. Here is the statement I read in …

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Al Gore, Bill McKibben and the urgency of now

  Question #1: Who has done more to build the 21st century climate movement, Al Gore or Bill McKibben?   Question #2: Who is doing the most right now to build the kind of climate movement we need?   Short answers: Al Gore for question #1, Bill McKibben for question #2.   Another question: Is it really helpful to pose these questions? Short answer: Y-E-S.   Both of these prominent individuals came forward to give leadership to the climate movement, and burst into public consciousness as doing so, in 2006. Both had been writing and speaking about the developing climate …

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Walking on Two Legs

Cochabamba, Bolivia, April 19, 2010 At the end of my third day in Cochabamba and after the first day of the World People’s Conference on Climate Change and the Rights of Mother Earth, it has become very clear that “walking on two legs” is very much what is taking place and will be taking place. This is the case as people have been walking from venue to venue in the part of Cochabamba where this historic conference of many thousands is taking place. I must have walked at least 3-4 miles today, but it was a joy to be doing …

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Climate legislation, science and activism

It is a very unfortunate fact that what the U.S. Senate does about the climate crisis, and when, is decisive when it comes to the possibility of an eventual solution to that absolutely critical issue. If the Senate does nothing, or very little, this year or for the next few years, the odds of staying this side of climate tipping points and avoiding climate catastrophe are definitely worsened, and they’re not so good right now. The conventional wisdom among the inside-the-beltway, established environmental groups is that the hope for action lies with the legislation-writing process currently taking place under the …

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Climate and political tipping points

There’s a famous quote attributed to Mahatma Gandhi: “First they ignore you, then they laugh at you, then they fight you, then you win.” However, according to Wikipedia, it may be that this concept was first expressed by a U.S. labor leader, Nicholas Klein of the Amalgamated Clothing Workers, in 1914. According to a report of the union’s convention that year, Klein said, “And, my friends, in this story you have a history of this entire movement. First they ignore you. Then they ridicule you. And then they attack you and want to burn you. And then they build monuments …

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Upping the ante on climate

Just about one year ago today, Barack Obama was inaugurated as President. Hopes were high among progressive-minded people, including climate activists. Finally, we had a President who got it on the need for action to address the deepening climate crisis. But here we are a year later and things look very different. The United States, including Obama, played a generally problematic role up to and at the Copenhagen climate conference, dismissing the widespread call by a big majority of the world’s countries for emissions reductions consistent with the climate science. The Obama administration played this role despite the bad-weather impacts …

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Christmas and Copenhagen

The huge—and hugely disappointing, as far as the official results—Copenhagen world climate conference has just concluded. Since the worldwide celebrations of the birth of Jesus of Nazareth are coming up later this week, I thought I would study the words of Jesus in the books of Matthew, Mark, Luke and John to see if any of what he said there was of relevance to what just happened in Copenhagen. It is. In Matthew Chapter 7, verse 20, as part of a parable about how to know who was good and who was not, he stated, “you will know them by …

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Hungering for climate justice

In everyone’s life, at some time, our inner fire goes out. It is then burst into flame by an encounter with another human being. We should all be thankful for those people who rekindle the inner spirit. -- Albert Schweitzer Six months ago, I went through a period of depression that was probably the lowest I’ve felt, for a sustained period of time, in 40 years. The reason? It was what was happening back in April, May, and June in the House of Representatives as they worked to put together comprehensive legislation to address the climate crisis. For two months …