Planetary FAIL.

Via Waylon Lewis
on Jul 23, 2010
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The Climate Bill just died.

via The Biggest, Worst “Green” Moment just Happened—and hardly any1 noticed. except 4 @treehugger @salon @nytimes

“We don’t have a single Republican to work with us,” Mr. Reid said.

From the Times:

After a meeting of Senate Democrats, party leaders on Thursday said they had abandoned hope of passing a comprehensive energy bill this summer and would pursue a more limited measure focused primarily on responding the Gulf oil spill and including some tightening of energy efficiency standards.

It was already watered down, and weakened, but in the face of zero Republicans coming forward to support responsible business and even a half-assed shift toward thinking long-term, the bill is dead. It was perhaps our last, best, only chance to get anything passed for the next decade—in November the Democrats will, likely, lose their majority. President Obama is weak, his popularity a thing of the past, at least for now (perhaps because he failed to galvanize the greatest environmental moment since the burning Cleveland river, 40 years ago).

I’m all over twitter, and read the news on dozens of sites a week—and the world barely noticed. Even green bloggers and tweeters are largely silent, with one worthy exception:

[Democrats and President Obama] never tried to properly explain climate legislation to the public, never made a solid case for it — even though polls consistently found that the public was in favor of such legislation. Obama was woefully mum on the subject. And they could find no way to link the BP spill to a need to curb oil dependence, even when it was right under their noses.

This failure is pretty devastating. In November, the GOP is likely to recapture many seats in both the House and the Senate, making good climate legislation even more unlikely, especially if the party continues its science-bucking lines. It may literally be years now before we can pass legislation that addresses climate change. And all this on the heels of news that China — China, the most pollution-happy nation on the planet — has announced plans for a domestic cap and trade system to restrict its own carbon emissions…for the rest, go to Treehugger.

On all of youtube, this is the most popular video re the Climate Bill over the last week, since it died, and it’s at—get this—only 300 views at the time of writing:

Via Salon, excerpt:

We know the Obama administration doesn’t like to get into fights that it thinks it can’t win. And while I share the disgust that climate activists and Rolling Stone reporters have showered on the White House for failing to make action on climate change a serious legislative priority, I don’t dispute the administration’s realpolitik: With more than a handful of Democratic Senators dead set against a meaningful bill, there was simply no chance that Majority Leader Harry Reid was ever going to get to 60 votes in the Senate, given the opposition of what President Obama has accurately described as a “partisan minority determined to block change.”

Senator Kerry, however, says it’s not dead. Video.


About Waylon Lewis

Waylon Lewis, founder of elephant magazine, now & host of Walk the Talk Show with Waylon Lewis, is a 1st generation American Buddhist “Dharma Brat." Voted #1 in U.S. on twitter for #green two years running, Changemaker & Eco Ambassador by Treehugger, Green Hero by Discovery’s Planet Green, Best (!) Shameless Self-Promoter at Westword's Web Awards, Prominent Buddhist by Shambhala Sun, & 100 Most Influential People in Health & Fitness 2011 by "Greatist", Waylon is a mediocre climber, lazy yogi, 365-day bicycle commuter & best friend to Redford (his rescue hound). His aim: to bring the good news re: "the mindful life" beyond the choir & to all those who didn't know they gave a care. | His first book, Things I would like to do with You, is now available.


13 Responses to “Planetary FAIL.”

  1. via

    Loryn Zerr
    that sucks.

    Emily Kochert

    Nancy Davenport
    In what capacity do you mean "hardly anyone noticed?" With all due respect, that makes little sense.

    Kathleen Lubeck
    I noticed! And I am REALLY PISSED!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    Rachel Griffin

    Kye Sangha

    Vanessa Hernandez

    Sherry Peters
    At least in the end…the planet won't care what political party you align with, your religion, age, gender, race, etc. So…was this a win for some group?

    Fred Kapinos
    Alas…it seems as though this group won:

    Oh wait what?!
    Sherry, that's a good point, but a tad nihilistic perhaps: millions of animals, lives, thousands upon thousands of species will notice.

  2. Nancy, if you're reading the article, you'll know what I'm referring to. Twittersphere, green bloggers, much of media, google trending and twitter trending topics…it's as if it didn't happen.

  3. Adam says:

    I wonder if anyone will remember this come election time?????

  4. NoWhining says:

    What good does getting angry and disheartened do anyone.
    Quit whining – call someone in government – join a group that is doing something – if it really matters get on it.
    Emotionalism is killing us all and yet we indulge in it's destructive ways. Gather facts – find ways to make it easier for people to be green and push the heck out of any industry that creates green jobs – then go find a logger/coal miner or unemployed auto worker and show them with patience and respect that their jobs of the future can feed their kids and make their lives better. Too much talk – not enough action. Quit whining and start moving. The government is not the only way to get something done – in fact it may be one of the worst ways.

  5. Sounds good, amen.

    But even small actions—and inactions—let alone big actions and inactions by our government have huge effects. A Climate Bill would have incentivized business to do a little more than think about the bottom line—and it would have created or helped create tends of thousands of clean, renewable, non-war-causing domestic jobs.

  6. Adriana says:

    I don't think the right wing will EVER get it. They're selling away and throwing away their future generation's future…

  7. UGH! I read about it. Could hardly believe it. I've been writing and tweeting about taking action for real climate legislation for months. One voice at a time can really make a difference. This week I was not fully engaged (trying to spend time with my little guy before summer slips away) and am beyond disappointed. Now to determine what we, the people, can do next.

  8. Stefanie says:

    Let's march on Washington about this, WTF are we waiting for? Why isn't anyone organizing this???

  9. Bud Wilson says:

    Opportunities for change arise every moment. Instead of arguing about where to begin, i.e. with the Government or with Business or with NGO's and individuals, the approach we ought to embrace is the notion that we must begin everywhere at once to implement change. Find people who share your passion for change and work together to demonstrate a vastly more attractive and compelling alternative to the status quo. Be leaderful and remember that politicians rarely lead. They usually confirm change, once WE have made it happen. Of course, it is deeply disturbing that corporate lobbyists have manipulated our politicians for decades. The public interest and the well being of the planet gets shafted time and time again with policies that favor money over sane behavior. It's up to all of us to remind our elected officials about basic ecological principles that are essential to maintain the necessary conditions to sustain life… and then, show them the way!

  10. Kain says:

    this is bullshit, democrats have more seats but yet they suck up to republicans, all these politicians are so corrupt.

  11. Clog up the Senate phone lines tomorrow! Make sure they hear how inaction is unacceptable and that we're not going away.

  12. Hanuman says:

    I agree, we can have a million clean energy laws passed but, if no one is taking action in their life, it is all for naught. I feel (the lack of inspiration & bi-partisan participation) that it reflects an I want what I want attitude regardless of it's impact on our environment.