Politics

Why did Dems bargain down the energy bill?

Lots of people wonder why Reid and Senate Democrats were so willing, almost eager, to bargain the energy bill down to the point where it was a mere nubbin of its former robust self. Why …

Where do we go from here?

The Bali meeting, and the lessons learned

It's important, this time, to draw conclusions, and to do so publicly. Because Bali has taken us -- barely and painfully -- over a line and into a new and even more difficult level in the climate game we'll be playing for the rest of our lives. In fact, it's not too much to say that, with the realizations of the last year and their culmination at the 13th Conference of Parties, the game has, finally, belatedly, begun in earnest. First up, we knew going into Bali that if the old routine continued without variation, we'd really be in trouble. The timing of this meeting alone made this clear. Here we were, after the skeptics, after the IPCC's Fourth Assessment Report, after Gore's (and the IPCC's) Nobel Prize. We know now how grave the situation is. So it's with great relief that I'm able to say that, judging at least by Bali, the game has indeed changed -- except, of course, for the United States.

Omnibus spending package

Another terrible bill?

I'll cover the debate over the omnibus spending bill here tomorrow. It's being held until at least then, as the Senate deals with FISA shenanigans, which you can view for the next several hours on C-SPAN 2.

House of Representatives’ food service goes sustainable

Cafeterias in the House of Representatives are getting a makeover today: out with the high-fructose corn syrup, in with the free-roaming hens. (Well, there won’t actually be hens roaming in the cafeterias — you get …

The Great Carnac I ain't

Assessing my predictions from last year

At the end of last year, I made 20 predictions for 2007. As a pundit in good standing I am, of course, unaccountable for my predictions. (How do you think we all stay employed?) Nonetheless, …

Senate farm bill post-mortem

The Sustainable Ag Coalition delivers its assessment

Ferd Hoefner of the Sustainable Agriculture Coalition has been involved in farm bills since the mid-1970s, working behind the scenes to try to snatch farm legislation from the paws of agribusiness. So when he delivers …

Two takes on the farm bill

My opinion, and an industrial soybean farmer’s

Speaking of the farm bill — and who isn’t — y’all should check out an interview I recently did with something called the Lambert Report. Check out the big ol’ Monsanto ad in the upper …

Question of the day

What about the RPS in Texas?

So Senate Republicans managed to kill the Renewable Portfolio Standard in the energy bill. One question: who was the big-government, nanny-state liberal who forced one of the nation's largest and most successful RPSs on the poor, unwitting state of Texas? Hint: As Governor of Texas in 1999, he signed the RPS into law and later moved to the District of Columbia to pursue other opportunities, like threatening to veto a bill that would have treated all Americans like Texans.

Annals of irritants, part four

Press peddles Republican talking points on energy bill

I’m seeing this kind of thing all over the place: Faced with stiff Republican opposition that is backed by Bush’s veto threat, Democrats made misstep after misstep in trying to pass this energy bill. It …

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