The John James Newsletter 13
13 September 2014.
Political Straightjacket By George Monbiot
If the ozone hole had been discovered ten years later, governments are likely to have done nothing.
By the mid-1990s, the doctrine of market fundamentalism had almost all governments by the throat. This extreme political doctrine – that governments must cease to govern – has made direct, uncomplicated action almost unthinkable. Just as the extent of humankind’s greatest crisis – climate breakdown – became clear, governments willing to address it were everywhere being disciplined or purged. Since then, this doctrine has caused financial crises and economic collapse, the destruction of livelihoods, mountainous debt, insecurity and the devastation of the living planet.
Here’s How Global Warming Is Already Worsening Extreme Deluges in the US
Scientists predicted that climate change would increase the intensity and frequency of the worst deluges: and we’ve observed that happening. Now scientists are telling us that things are going to get a lot worse. After all, the Earth has only warmed one degree Fahrenheit in the past half-century, while we are on track to warm as much as ten times that this century if we continue to ignore the warnings.
Hamas Rocket Launches Don’t Explain Israel’s Gaza Destruction
A very blurry 20-second video appears to show a rocket launch from what is identified as “Abu Nur” school. But it is deceptive. A black streak rises from the area of the school for a little more than a second of the video, but for the entire length of the video two voices declare repeatedly that they saw three rockets launched “from within the school”. Careful viewing of the footage reveals, however, that the apparent launch comes from outside the wall of the three-story school building rather than from within it. In three other cases of alleged rocket launches from schools, the IDF provides no visual evidence – only large red dots drawn on an aerial view of the schools.
Residents living nearer natural gas wells report more health symptoms, Yale study says
Respondents, who were not asked about fracking, reported more upper respiratory and skin symptoms over the past year when they lived less than a kilometer from a gas well, and fewer such symptoms when they lived more than two kilometers from a well.
15,000 Australian businesses save $64m/year with solar
Businesses – ranging from dairy farmers through to wineries, supermarkets and offices – have now installed solar. They hgave have now invested almost $460 million in solar power systems across the country, helping them to collectively save about $64 million on their bills every year.
Australian owned solar technology makes storage breakthrough
Novatec Solar – a company majority owned by Australia’s Transfield Holdings – has commissioned a solar thermal energy demonstration plant in Spain that is based on a new type of molten salt storage technology.
A compilation of quotes from recent New York Times articles.
In Iraq, dissolved elements of the army will have to regroup and fight with conviction. Political leaders will have to reach compromises on the allocation of power and money in ways that have eluded them for years. Disenfranchised Sunni tribesmen will have to muster the will to join the government’s battle. European and Arab allies will have to hang together, Washington will have to tolerate the resurgence of Iranian-backed Shiite militias it once fought, and U.S. commanders will have to orchestrate an air war without ground-level guidance from American combat forces.
Destroying ISIS won’t create an effective and legitimate Iraqi state. It won’t restore the possibility of a democratic Egypt. It won’t dissuade Saudi Arabia from funding jihadists. It won’t pull Libya back from the brink of anarchy. It won’t end the Syrian civil war. It won’t bring peace and harmony to Somalia and Yemen. It won’t persuade the Taliban to lay down their arms in Afghanistan. It won’t end the perpetual crisis of Pakistan. It certainly won’t resolve the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.
All the military power in the world won’t solve those problems. Yet Obama is allowing himself to be drawn back into the very war that he once correctly denounced as stupid and unnecessary — mostly because he and his advisers don’t know what else to do. Bombing has become the administration’s default option.
Some officials and terrorism experts believe that the actual danger posed by ISIS has been distorted in hours of television punditry and alarmist statements by politicians, and that there has been little substantive public debate about the unintended consequences of expanding American military action in the Middle East.
The broad US air assault on Islamic State jihadists inside both Syria and Iraq will be considered an act of aggression by both countries..
Some American officials warn of the potential danger of a prolonged military campaign in the Middle East and there are risks that escalating airstrikes could do the opposite of what they are intended to do and fan the terrorism to American soil.
Rudderless and without a compass, the American ship of state continues to drift, guns blazing.