The Attack of the Corporate-Owned Government!
by Coast Watcher
It's more horrific than a 1950s monster movie.
process is supposed to protect citizens from the arbitrary imposition
of laws upon their lives. It provides a clear set of guidelines by
which government is supposed to operate—but what happens when
government chooses to ignore due process, or change the laws so it
doesn’t operate any more?
There was a referendum in the English counties of
Lancashire and Yorkshire on the subject of fracking, and it passed by a decisive
99.2% vote against allowing fracking in their counties. However, the British government chose to ignore the result
and allow fracking to go ahead anyway.
example is the Lake Erie Bill of Rights, introduced in Toledo, Ohio.
After years of campaigning the initiative finally got on a special
ballot and was passed by a sizable majority. Someone in the Ohio
Chamber of Commerce made a phone call to a friend in the state
legislature, who wrote a clause into an unrelated bill effectively
banning citizens from suing on behalf of nature. Thousands of voters’
opinions were overturned by the action of just two men.
In Pennsylvania, the state "Department of Environmental Protection" is suing Grant Township for voting in a Community Water Protection Law to protect their people from the danger of hazardous fracking wastes. Yes, the state is suing its own citizens for the "crime" of trying to protect their environment against the moneyed-interests of the fracking industry.
in the UK the ongoing Extinction Rebellion movement has caused the
already beleaguered government of Prime Minister Boris Johnson more
headaches than he can handle—so it arbitrarily banned all Extinction Rebellion protests throughout London. In Washington, DC,
Extinction Rebellion protesters have been arrested and held without
charge for hours, sometimes days. As if this weren’t bad enough,
bystanders including journalists have also been arrested and jailed
just for being in the area.
British government also has a lot to answer for over its treatment of
Julian Assange. Assange is being held in prison awaiting extradition
to the United States on trumped-up espionage charges. The conditions
of his imprisonment are onerous and debilitating, all of which
violates the UK Human Rights Act and various laws governing the
treatment of inmates in UK jails.
France the Gillet Jaune or Yellow Vests protests
have drawn the ire of French President Macron. The police are firing
baton rounds and tear gas directly into crowds of protesters, causing
governments across the Western world are turning against their
citizens. This oppression is driven by Big Business working behind
the scenes to control bought and paid for politicians. Even the case
of Assange’s imprisonment is down to Capitalism punishing those who
dare to expose the failings of its system and those same politicians
who are but puppets in the great goal of making the billionaires even more money.
But people across
the world are gathering their forces and pushing back against oppression. Concessions are being won by grim determination,
persistence and resourcefulness. Hopefully, for the sake of democracy
and the environment, it won’t be too late to overthrow the oligarchy and restore the true government of the people instead of the
This Halloween, the men in the rubber monster suits aren't the ones to be afraid of--it's the rich men in suits and ties.
BIO: Coast Watcher is keeping track of all the times the oligarchs have taken away our democratic right to due process. If the three strikes rule ever applied to these criminals, they'd be spending the rest of their lives in jail. Don't let them ever forget it, either!
The following is an excellent comment that was made on Facebook recently by a frequent blog guest. I just had to share it with a wider audience. We get caught up at times with what all is "wrong" that we forget what all is "right." Are you connecting with others and seeing the good in them and the world-at-large? Why or why not? Listen to what Sean has to say.
by Sean Nestor
people I know actively celebrate and promote a culture of isolation and
misanthropy. Count me out. I want to be more connected with people, not
I think the solution to toxic social structures lies in
the work (and I mean work) of developing healthier social structures,
not the indulgence of our society's inclination toward abandonment and
alienation. The reality is that we will always depend on each other to
survive and to thrive and pretending otherwise is a vain and delusional
I dread a future made up of a bunch of unhappy, atomized
people wailing at each other from behind digital appliances, rarely
stopping to break bread and bond with each other over the sharing of
their life experiences.
I want a future of strong families,
strong neighborhoods, and strong communities -- a future where the
vulnerable among us are supported and cared for and where nobody who is
different fears for their safety.
We can all cite countless
atrocities committed by human beings against one another and against
other life on this planet. But I really believe all of that is eclipsed
by the volume of honest decent people who commit acts of love and
justice every day. We don't pay as much attention to them -- but they are
out there, and they deserve to be seen. I know lots of them, and I bet
you do, too. People are beautiful, if you take the time to see them.
Humanity is redeemable. Don't give up the ship. Fight for something better.
BIO: Sean Nestor is an activist who has worked on many social justice and environmental issues, including the passing of the Lake Erie Bill of Rights.
Read the Report
|Last week, Audubon released its new, groundbreaking report, Survival by Degrees: 389 Bird Species on the Brink,
the most detailed look at the impact of climate change on birds using
the latest climate models and bird data available. Here’s what people
are saying about our science:
“[The report] illustrates how thoroughly the avian
world as we know it may be remapped if humans continue pumping
greenhouse gas emissions into the atmosphere.” - The New York Times
"The existential threat to birds also impacts
humanity. As canaries warned coalminers of invisible death in the
industrial era, now birds of every shape and size can be life-or-death
alerts in the age of global warming.” - CNN
Yes, the news is troubling, but the call to action is clear: We must act now to protect the birds we love from climate change.
“There may still be hope in bird conservation, and in
the broader climate crisis, but only if urgent, difficult actions are
taken to address rising greenhouse gas emissions.” - TIME
See for yourself. Explore the report and learn what
climate change will mean for the birds in your community and exactly
what you can do to stop it.
Amazon is more than a store. Amazon Web
Services provides data storage for roughly 40% of the internet
(including Netflix, Slack, Pinterest, and even the site that hosts this
petition!), and it takes a LOT of energy to power.Competitors like Apple and Google have set up data centers with 100% renewable energy, but Amazon still sucks down fossil fuels.
The coming climate catastrophe is going to require action from all of us―even the world’s richest man.
Tell Jeff Bezos, CEO of Amazon and Amazon Web Services:
"Take constructive action to address
climate change. Given the dire global implications, I believe it is
urgent that every corporation do all it can to measure and reduce its
From March for Our Lives
Let's start with some background.
During the September 12th debate, Congressman Beto O'Rourke expressed
his support of mandatory buy-backs. Other candidates started to comment
on the issue -- and it became a major topic during Tuesday’s debate.
To be clear, we fully support a mandatory buy-back program. There are an
estimated 256-393 million civilian-owned firearms in the United States,
which means there are more guns than people in this country. As we lay
out in our Peace Plan, a federal mandatory buy-back of assault weapons
and an optional, but encouraged, buy-back program for other firearms
would save lives. Australia's national buy-back program was associated
with as much as a 57% reduction in firearms deaths.
The time for flowery metaphors and vague promises is over. The time to end gun violence is now.
being said, boiling down the gun violence epidemic to a debate on one
policy point misses the big picture. Although these solo plans would
definitely help, we need a comprehensive plan. We need candidates around
the country, from city hall to Capitol Hill, to introduce audacious,
bold, and comprehensive plans as big as the problem they're trying to
solve (or endorse ours).
We need candidates who are unafraid to take on the NRA in their words
*AND* their actions. We need candidates to step up and tell us their
specific policies and plans to cut gun deaths by 50% in ten years, like
our Peace Plan does. Or tell us how their proposed legislation and
programs will end the epidemic altogether.
Let's do this,
March For Our Lives
From Friends of the Earth:
summer, the Amazon was burning. Hurricanes ravaged the east coast.
Californians experienced days without power as a way to prevent the next
major fire. These extreme weather events show that climate change is
on August 29th, Trump’s EPA decided to roll back regulations on methane
-- one of the most dangerous greenhouse gases that’s driving the
good news: These disastrous rollbacks aren’t finalized. If engaged
environmentalists like you show a groundswell of opposition to this
plan, the EPA will have to change course. But we must act fast!
dangerous is methane? It’s a significant driver of climate change that
is 30 times more potent than carbon dioxide. And it’s a threat to local
communities and the air we breathe. But for the third time, Trump’s EPA
administrator Andrew Wheeler is trying to gut methane regulations.
pollution standards are basic safeguards that help keep our planet
livable. Even Shell Oil and other industry producers think they’re
common sense. Regardless, Donald Trump and Wheeler are trying to create
loopholes to benefit their polluter friends at the expense of our
climate by recklessly rolling back these protections. The proposed
rollbacks would save the oil and gas industry between $17 million to $19
million a year.
we’re serious about addressing climate change, we need to significantly
cut methane from the oil and gas industry -- it’s one of the leading
sources of this pollution. This rollback is the latest part of a scheme
by Wheeler and Trump to do the opposite. Together, we can ensure the EPA
protects our health and the environment, not Big Oil profits.
no mistake: This is a blatant attempt to create loopholes that hinder
federal oversight on the oil and gas industry. And fossil fuel
executives will surely reap the profits of climate pollution for years
strong methane pollution safeguards is crucial to protecting our
communities as sea levels rise and extreme weather events become more
common. Rather than selling our children and families out to the worst
actors in the oil and gas industry, the EPA should be focused on
enacting and strengthening regulations like the Methane Rule to fight
the worsening impacts of the climate crisis.
your help, C.A., we’ve fought back Trump’s plans to slash our bedrock
environmental protections before. But we need your help again to fight
Trump’s latest giveaway to Big Oil polluters.
Standing with you,
Senior fossil fuel program manager,
Friends of the Earth
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