Politics

Should low-probability, high-impact risks govern policymaking?

All due respect to Paul Krugman, but the Weitzman thesis [PDF] has always made me a little uncomfortable. The idea is that it’s human nature to disregard unlikely risks, but if the unlikely risks are catastrophic enough then legislators should …

Kaine’t touch this

I’m not convinced by the recent buzz around Virginia Gov. Tim Kaine as Obama’s VP choice, for reasons having little to do with his horrendous record on coal. However, his horrendous record on coal does make it particularly irksome that …

Nixon: Not a closet enviro

It’s become something of a canard, when ritually invoking the need for bipartisanship on environmental issues, to note that Richard Nixon created the EPA. You might take this to mean that Nixon valued environmental protection. Historian Rick Perlstein would like …

More drilling in exchange for comprehensive energy legislation

Democrat Barack Obama on Friday said he would be willing to support some offshore drilling if it were necessary to enact a comprehensive energy plan, and indicated that he could support the bipartisan energy plan put forward by the Senate’s …

Obama releases new ad blasting’s McCain’s ties to oil industry

The campaign 2008 energy ad wars continue, delving deeper into negative territory. Today, Democratic presidential candidate Barack Obama released a new television ad accusing GOP rival John McCain of being in the pocket of Big Oil. The ad highlights the …

Coastal governors stand in the way of offshore drilling, even if Congress approves it

President Bush keeps repeating his call for Congress to lift the moratorium on offshore drilling. Republican presidential candidate John McCain is consistently drilling home the same message. And on Wednesday of last week, Interior Secretary Dirk Kempthorne said that just …

Obama softens opposition to offshore drilling, and more political news

Barack Obama opened the door to offshore drilling on Friday, saying, “My interest is in making sure we’ve got the kind of comprehensive energy policy that can bring down gas prices. If, in order to get that passed, we have …

What power politics looks like

As I left for vacation a week ago (hi, I’m back!), I was thinking Republican strategy on energy couldn’t get much nastier. Of course I was wrong. The right is convinced that drilling is its ace in the hole — …

Groups urge action as report finds black Americans are more likely to suffer in changing climate

A new report finds that African-Americans in the United States will suffer the effects of climate change more severely than white Americans. They are twice as likely to live in cities where the heat-island effect makes already-high temperatures more severe. …