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Thursday, December 13, 2007

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Nobody with a lick of sense thinks the Democrats represent a solution to the climate dilemma. They're just like the pukes in that regard: trying to kick the problem ahead to the NEXT generation.

Nobody with a lick of sense thinks the Democrats represent a solution to the climate dilemma. They're just like the pukes in that regard: trying to kick the problem ahead to the NEXT generation.

if the Democrats do gain the presidency again in 2008, liberals will go back to sleep...

I go back and forth on this one. The Dems winning the White House might not inspire liberals to go back to sleep, it might inspire liberals to get more active, because their expectations on a lot of fronts - climate change, Iraq, health care - are increased.

A case in point: when the Dems won control of Congress, did antiwar liberals to go to sleep because they thought Congress would take care of things? Not if you judge by the number of people, nearly half a million, who came out to UFPJ's national march on D.C. on Jan. 27. Apparently, a lot of liberals were thinking something like this: This new Congress, if pushed, might end the war. And the hope that their actions might make a difference, that someone might be listening, inspired greater activism - not less.

The ruling class is always offering phony change as a substitute for real change, and sometimes that works. But sometimes it only whets the appetite for the real thing. I think it's hard to tell which way it would go if the Dems win the Presidency.

I go more back than forth, but I hope you're right. But you were also bringing the war into it while I was talking about global warming. The nature of "action" on global warming makes it difficult to tell the difference between real progress and artful stalling, and I don't doubt that the Democrats will exploit that. And I also don't doubt that the vast majority of Democratic voters will suddenly be more open to those same old excuses again (too damaging to the economy, doesn't ask enough of developing countries, evil Republicans are preventing us from ratifying any agreement, etc).

I think you're right that there's a better chance that Democratic voters will keep the pressure on over the war, simply because it's such a huge issue in their minds at this point. But I don't think we can overestimate how effectively the Democrats will be able to sell minor adjustments as major policy corrections. And if they do just ignore their anti-war base, what then? Will those people vote Republican, or Green, or...? Not bloody likely. The Democrats have already seen in 2004 and 2006 that they can thumb their nose at the left and at the anti-war bloc and still get their votes, so why should they cater to them at all?

I'd love to be wrong on this...I just don't expect to be.

monbiot's weighed in. what think.

You mean this? Very good, as usual for Monbiot, and it fleshes out the details of what I was talking about. And it also has a useful mention of the bikini-wearing stewardess calendar.

it also presents his actions more sympathetically, with the 90s rabid attack congress as a serious foil. monbiot's explanation is more about the american system being rigged than gore being a patsy. also, the powers behind the throne feel differently now about risk and opportunity.

You're right that no Democratic voter remembers those headlines, but... I loved Tom Tomorrow's cartoon which mentioned those headlines, _AND_ the already-gelled Democratic response that you cited. (Dan, the cartoonist, voted for Nader in 2000 as near as anyone can know).

http://archive.salon.com/comics/tomo/2001/01/02/tomo/index.html

...ahead of his time...

Yep--he clearly based that on the FAIR alert (from which I took some quotes as well, but others are the ones I looked up for myself when I was writing my last Gore posting). And he did vote for Nader in 2000, but in 2004 he backed Kerry, going so far as to take a cheap shot at people who didn't have a similar change of heart (comparing them to George Bush in terms of their refusal to "acknowledge and adapt to a changing situation").

I've always loved This Modern World, as any sane person would. But since 2004 I've noticed a steady Kossification of Dan's positions (as reflected on his blog and in his cartoons), which isn't a positive development. He's still the best progressive cartoonist on the planet, though.

So what is the solution, pray-tell?

So what is the solution, pray-tell?

Global warming is the solution. And human life as we know it is the problem it's going to solve.

I do at least get a wry amusement out of that fact, as we shuffle off to chaos and destruction. Politicians are acting like this is just another thing they can play political games with, posture over, pretend to solve while deferring it indefinitely to future generations—like a million other issues. But as a friend of mine likes to say, nature bats last. And I'd add: it's the top of the ninth right now, and humanity already has two outs. Getting this wrong means that we are well and truly screwed, and insipid blather about what is "realistic and achievable" isn't going to do a thing to stem the maelstrom that's headed our way.

So what is the solution, pray-tell?

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