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A Collection of Interesting, Important, and Controversial Perspectives Largely Excluded from the American Mainstream Media
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Or Will They Parent Us?
Kids are taking over the streets in other countries, rallying and chanting and refusing to go to school one day a week. Young people across the world are striking to draw attention to the ravages of climate change. They are demanding -- with their bodies and their voices -- that the catastrophe each of them... Read More
Yes, it’s happening. It really is. And I’m not just thinking about Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez’s Green New Deal and the support it’s getting from Democratic presidential candidates or the controversy it’s generating. I’m also thinking about Washington State Governor Jay Inslee’s entry into the 2020 presidential race on a platform that boils down to a... Read More
If you think of the age of Trump as a spectator sport, then perhaps the truly riveting show isn’t on the president’s Twitter feed or in his latest shout-outs to the press or at another of those “cabinet meetings” where everyone is obliged to publicly praise you-know-perfectly-well-who (and so does he). I wouldn’t for a... Read More
How Climate Change Could End Washington’s Global Dominion
Once upon a time in America, we could all argue about whether or not U.S. global power was declining. Now, most observers have little doubt that the end is just a matter of timing and circumstance. Ten years ago, I predictedthat, by 2025, it would be all over for American power, a then-controversial comment that’s... Read More
She began cutting school on Fridays and simply sitting on the steps of the Swedish parliament. Her name was Greta Thunberg. She was 15 years old, with a mind of her own and a sign demanding a school strike against climate change. Her parents wanted her to go back to school, but Friday after Friday... Read More
After reading an especially radical platform agreed upon by the British Labor Party, one Tory wag described it as "the longest suicide note in history." The phrase comes to mind on reading of the resolution calling for a Green New Deal, advanced by Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, and endorsed by at least five of the major Democratic... Read More
climate-protest
It is cold in the Midwest, so cold that Rachel Maddow already ascribed it to evil Putin (“Russia will freeze you and your family to death.”) It is extremely cold in England, too. I’d think this frost spell should put paid to the silly notion of Global Warming. But no, the adepts of Al Gore... Read More
The Heat’s On Us
I’m standing atop Rush Hill on Alaska's remote St. Paul Island. While only 665 feet high, it provides a 360-degree view of this tundra-covered, 13-mile-long, seven-mile-wide part of the Pribilof Islands. While the hood of my rain jacket flaps in the cold wind, I gaze in wonder at the silvery waters of the Bering Sea.... Read More
Dahr Jamail, a TomDispatch regular, reported strikingly from Iraq in the years after the 2003 American invasion of that country. Since then, he’s refocused the skills he learned as a war reporter on covering a fossil-fuelized war against the planet (and humanity itself). It goes by the mild name of climate change or global warming... Read More
Globalists Really Are Ruining Your Life
You know the story: the globalists want your guns. They want your democracy. They’re hovering just beyond the horizon in those black helicopters. They control the media and Wall Street. They’ve burrowed into a deep state that stretches like a vast tectonic plate beneath America’s fragile government institutions. They want to replace the United States... Read More
It’s not been a good era for migrants -- and no, I’m not talking about those “caravans” of desperate human beings from Central America heading for the U.S. (and the wrath of Donald J. Trump). I’m thinking about birds -- shorebirds, in fact, which are surely the greatest migrants on the planet. The Hudsonian godwit,... Read More
A Planet in Loss Mode
If you’ve been paying attention to what’s happening to the nonhuman life forms with which we share this planet, you’ve likely heard the term “the Sixth Extinction.” If not, look it up. After all, a superb environmental reporter, Elizabeth Kolbert, has already gotten a Pulitzer Prize for writing a book with that title. Whether the... Read More
What planet do we actually live on? Start with this fact: the last four years -- 2015, 2016, 2017, and (it seems a sure thing) 2018 -- will be the hottest on record. And if that doesn’t seem like evidence enough of something worth noting, how about 20 of the last 22 years being the... Read More
I took my first hit of speed in 1970 during my freshman year in college. That little white pill -- Dexedrine -- was a revelation. It made whatever I was doing absolutely fascinating. Amphetamine sharpened my focus and banished all appetites except a hunger for knowledge. I spent that entire night writing 35 pages of... Read More
In Katowice, Poland, all the signers of the 2015 Paris climate accord are gathered to assess how the world's nations are meeting their goals to cut carbon emissions. Certainly, the communications strategy in the run-up was impressive. In October came that apocalyptic U.N. report warning that the world is warming faster than we thought and... Read More
Whether you realize it or not, we are in a new age of imperial geopolitics on a grand -- and potentially disastrous -- scale. TomDispatch regular Alfred McCoy, author of In the Shadows of the American Century: The Rise and Decline of U.S. Global Power, lays out devastatingly just what that is likely to mean... Read More
If you happened to notice, news reports on a study in the science journal Nature about the globe’s oceans warming faster than even most climate scientists had imagined should have been eye-opening and potentially devastating news. In another world, that study would certainly have made headlines across the country as the midterm elections bore down... Read More
Will This Climate-Change Dystopia Have a Sequel?
The mid-term elections are over, and the Democrats have regained the House, but the rest of American political reality remains intact. Meanwhile, the campaigns barely touched on the most important issues of our time: war, climate change, and the fracturing of the international community. So, let’s consider these larger issues from a different angle. Let’s... Read More
I appreciate the numerous emails thanking me for providing an understandable explanation of the global warming scenario. The book, Unprecedented Crime, about which I reported, caused me to start thinking more seriously about man-made global warming. I already was thinking about it, because capitalism owes its profits to the costs that it imposes on the... Read More
As I knew would happen, my review of the very serious and heavily documented book, Unprecedented Crime (https://www.paulcraigroberts.org/2018/10/26/global-warming-is-real-the-threat-is-real-ecocide-is-on-the-horizon/ ) resulted in condemnations from the fossil fuel industry’s trolls and from libertarians who think that global warming is a scheme for government to seize more power over private industry. Personally, I wish the fossil fuel trolls... Read More
The tobacco companies’ response to the US Surgeon General’s report in 1964 linking smoking to lung cancer was countered by the tobacco companies setting up propaganda organizations to create a controversy by generating doubt over the link. This strategy staved off the inevitable for more than two decades. The same tactic is being used by... Read More
A Mother Thinks About the Inheritance of Children
“I don’t want to live in a world without cheetahs, Mom.” Seamus loves cheetahs and what’s not to love -- unless you are a Thomson’s gazelle? Cheetahs are the fastest mammals on the planet, formidable predators, sleek, saucy looking, and they even have spots. My six-year-old boy can’t imagine a future without his favorite animal,... Read More
One genuine joy in my life is spending time with my grandson. He’s six, like TomDispatchregular Frida Berrigan’s son Seamus, and he reminds me constantly of just how remarkable -- how clever, quick, quirky, inquisitive, and ready to absorb the world -- we human beings are. Unlike a new-born foal that, on arrival, struggles to... Read More
A recent study of insect life in protected nature reserves in Germany got the most modest attention in our busy Trumpian world. In the last 27 years, however, researchers found that flying insect populations there had dropped 76% seasonally and 82% in mid-summer (when insect numbers are at their peak). If you aren’t instantly struck... Read More
A Planet Boiling With Unintended Consequences
You want to see “blowback” in action? That's easy enough. All you need is a vague sense of how Google Search works. Then type into it phrases like “warmest years,” “rising sea levels,” “melting ice,” “lengthening wildfire season,” or “future climate refugees,” and you’ll find yourself immersed in the grimmest of blowback universes. It’s a... Read More
Let me mention a small joy of my life. One afternoon and evening a week I take care of my 5½-year-old grandson, or perhaps it would be more accurate to say that we take care of each other. We always stop for cookies -- grandparents being allowed, according to The Official Rulebook of Child-Rearing (see... Read More
Texas, Florida, Puerto Rico, the Virgin Islands. The U.S. got clobbered. Three category 4 or 5 Atlantic hurricanes of startling intensity, a record for any single season, whacked the country. Records were also set for rainfall and destruction. Two of those mega-storms, Irma and Maria, their power intensified by waters growing ever warmer thanks to... Read More
Greeting Climate-Change Victims With a Man-Made Dystopia
When I first talked to the three Honduran men in the train yard in the southern Mexican town of Tenosique, I had no idea that they were climate-change refugees. We were 20 miles from the border with Guatemala at a rail yard where Central American refugees often congregated to try to board La Bestia (“the... Read More
Will the Trump Administration Take Down the Arctic Refuge?
What happens in the Arctic doesn’t just stay up north. It affects the world, as that region is the integrator of our planet’s climate systems, atmospheric and oceanic. At the moment, the northernmost places on Earth are warming at more than twice the global average, a phenomenon whose impact is already being felt planetwide. Welcome... Read More
The United States just experienced its largest rainfall event in memory. For the first time in recorded weather history, two category 4 hurricanes, Harvey and Irma, hit in a single season (not yet over). And San Francisco, famed for its chilliness, experienced an unheard of 106 degree day as September began, while a record West... Read More
Militarizing Homeland Security in the Climate-Change Era
Deployed to the Houston area to assist in Hurricane Harvey relief efforts, U.S. military forces hadn’t even completed their assignments when they were hurriedly dispatched to Florida, Puerto Rico, and the U.S. Virgin Islands to face Irma, the fiercest hurricane ever recorded in the Atlantic Ocean. Florida Governor Rick Scott, who had sent members of... Read More
Trump’s Fossil-Fueled Foreign Policy
Who says President Trump doesn’t have a coherent foreign policy? Pundits and critics across the political spectrum have chided him for failing to articulate and implement a clear international agenda. Look closely at his overseas endeavors, though, and one all-too-consistent pattern emerges: Donald Trump will do whatever it takes to prolong the reign of fossil... Read More
Donald Trump and the Triumph of Anti-Politics
Once upon a time, long, long ago, I testified before the great assembly of our land. When I describe this event to children today, it really does sound to them like a fairy tale. Once upon a time -- a time before the world splintered into a million pieces and America became its current disunited... Read More
If you’re looking for fairy tales that are on the grim (not Grimm) side, things that once might only have been in dystopian fiction, look no further than our present planet at our present moment. What about, for instance, that trillion-metric-ton iceberg -- yes, “trillion” is not a misprint -- that broke loose last week... Read More
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Life is not boring with President Trump. Perhaps he hasn't yet fulfilled many wishes of his voters, but he definitely has made their news much more entertaining. Standing a few inches from impeachment, surviving lynch by media, hunted down by rogue Republican senators, the US President broke three taboos established by his predecessors: he removed... Read More
President Trump fulfilled one of his campaign promises by withdrawing our country from last year’s Paris agreement on phasing out fossil-fuel energy production. This is pure America First policy-making. The Paris agreement was a big favorite with globalists, in spite of the fact that it wasn’t actually very global. Sure, all the important countries signed... Read More
Inaction Equals Annihilation
Not since World War II have more human beings been at risk from disease and starvation than at this very moment. On March 10th, Stephen O’Brien, under secretary-general of the United Nations for humanitarian affairs, informed the Security Council that 20 million people in three African countries -- Nigeria, Somalia, and South Sudan -- as... Read More
There are the terrorists, who get attention out of all proportion to their actual clout, and then there are those with big-time clout -- I think of them as the terrarists -- who get almost no attention at all. Back in May 2013, I came up with that term and here’s how I described those... Read More
The mental convolutions in which some will engage in order to ignore the evidence that the polar ice caps are melting—and if not from warming from what?—is as astounding as the convolutions and denial of basic facts that characterize those who believe the government’s official 9/11 fairy tale. If all science is rigged, as a... Read More
I am fortunate in having readers who look after me. Some have offered me refuge in their countries and their homes from what they expect otherwise will inevitably be the midnight knock on my door. Others correct my mistakes from typos to content. As I have never considered myself infallible, I carefully read what they... Read More
Trump’s Carbon-Obsessed Energy Policy and the Planetary Nightmare to Come
Scroll through Donald Trump’s campaign promises or listen to his speeches and you could easily conclude that his energy policy consists of little more than a wish list drawn up by the major fossil fuel companies: lift environmental restrictions on oil and natural gas extraction, build the Keystone XL and Dakota Access pipelines, open more... Read More
Or How Donald Trump Changed Everything (2016-2020)
I didn’t vote in the pivotal American election of 2016. Thirty-five years ago, in that unseasonably warm month of November, I was in Antarctica’s Allan Hills taking ice core samples with a hand augur. The pictures I have from that time show my team drilling deep into the blue ice, but what we were actually... Read More
The Mounting Threat to Climate Progress
In a year of record-setting heat on a blistered globe, with fast-warmingoceans, fast-melting ice caps, and fast-rising sea levels, ratification of the December 2015 Paris climate summit agreement -- already endorsed by most nations -- should be a complete no-brainer. That it isn't tells you a great deal about our world. Global geopolitics and the... Read More
The man who might be president insists that climate change is an elaborate, “very expensive hoax,” even possibly a “Chinese” one meant to undermine the American economy. It’s “bullshit” and “pseudoscience” (on which, it seems, he’s an expert). He’s said this sort of thing numerous times, always mockingly, always dismissively. Only recently in his Phoenix... Read More
One small aspect of a trip I took to El Paso, Texas, back in the 1970s remains in my mind: the weather. No, not the weather in El Paso, which is more or less the same much of the year, but the weather on the local television news. I remember watching a weatherman begin his... Read More
Give a group of 21 Republican and Democratic Florida mayors credit. When it comes to sea level rise, they live at what might be considered Ground Zero for climate change in the U.S. As Philip Levine, the mayor of Miami Beach, put it, “Some people get swept into office. I floated into office.” The group... Read More
Flooding the Earth With Fossil Fuels
Here’s the story so far. We have the chief legal representatives of the eighth and 16th largest economies on Earth (California and New York) probing the biggest fossil fuel company on Earth (ExxonMobil), while both Democratic presidential candidates are demanding that the federal Department of Justice join the investigation of what may prove to be... Read More
The time scale should stagger you. Just imagine for a moment that what we humans do on this planet will last at least 10,000 more years, and no, I’m not talking about those statues on Easter Island or the pyramids or the Great Wall of China or the Empire State Building. I’m not talking about... Read More
How to Stop the Fossil Fuel Industry From Wrecking Our World
When I was a kid, I was creepily fascinated by the wrongheaded idea, current in my grade school, that your hair and your fingernails kept growing after you died. The lesson seemed to be that it was hard to kill something off -- if it wanted to keep going. Something similar is happening right now... Read More
The Future Belongs to Renewables
Historically, the transition from one energy system to another, as from wood to coal or coal to oil, has proven an enormously complicated process, requiring decades to complete. In similar fashion, it will undoubtedly be many years before renewable forms of energy -- wind, solar, tidal, geothermal, and others still in development -- replace fossil... Read More
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