Refusing to act on climate change will cost future generations $530 trillion (at least) - Techly
By continuing to delay significant reductions in greenhouse gas emissions, we risk handing young people alive today a bill of up to US$535 trillion. This would be the cost of the “negative emissions” technologies required to remove CO₂ from the air in order to avoid dangerous climate change. These are the main findings of new research published in Earth System Dynamics, conducted by an international team led by US climate scientist James Hansen, previously the director of NASA’s Goddard Institute for Space Studies. The Paris Agreement in 2015 saw the international community agree to limit warming to within 2°C. The Hansen team argue that the much safer approach is to reduce atmospheric concentrations of CO₂ from the current annual average of more than 400ppm (parts per million) back to 1980s levels of 350ppm. This is a moderately more ambitious goal than the aspiration announced in Paris to further attempt to limit warming to no more than 1.5°C.
The Kodiak Kickback: the quiet payoff for an Alaska senator in the Senate health bill
Buried in Senate Republicans’ new health care bill is a provision to throw about $1 billion at states where premiums run 75 percent higher than the national average. Curiously, there’s just one state that meets this seemingly arbitrary designation: Alaska. That state also just so happens to be represented by Sen. Lisa Murkowski, a crucial Republican swing vote who has spent months threatening to torpedo the entire Obamacare repeal effort over her concerns about Medicaid cuts. Nobody believes this special fund was created to give Alaska alone a big boost through sheer coincidence.
The Ideologues Who Want to Destroy Democracy to Save Capitalism
The Ideologues Who Want to Destroy [...] James Buchanan flashes a smile at a news conference in 1986 at George Mason University after it was announced that he is the winner of the Nobel Memorial Prize in economic science. (Photo by Don Emmert/AFP/Getty Images) Last week we presented you with historian Nancy MacLean’s fascinating story of James McGill Buchanan — the father of “public choice economics” whose writing was influential to a number of ideologues on the far right. Some of his ideas are popular among the very monied (including Charles Koch) of the libertarian wing of the Republican Party and are frightening in their sheer calculation and callousness.
Climate change will displace millions
Wildfires tearing across Southern California have forced thousands of residents to evacuate from their homes. Even more people fled ahead of the hurricanes that slammed into Texas and Florida earlier this year, jamming highways and filling hotels. A viral social media post showed a flight-radar picture of people trying to escape Florida and posed a provocative question: What if the adjoining states were countries and didn’t grant escaping migrants refuge? By the middle of this century, experts estimate that climate change is likely to displace between 150 and 300 million people. If this group formed a country, it would be the fourth-largest in the world, with a population nearly as large as that of the United States.
Jared Kushner Tried and Failed to Get a Half-Billion-Dollar Bailout From Qatar
Not long before a major crisis ripped through the Middle East, pitting the United States and a bloc of Gulf countries against Qatar, Jared Kushner’s real estate company had unsuccessfully sought a critical half-billion-dollar investment from one of the richest and most influential men in the tiny nation, according to three well-placed sources with knowledge of the near transaction. Kushner is a senior adviser to President Trump, and also his son-in-law, and also the scion of a New York real estate empire that faces an extreme risk from an investment made by Kushner in the building at 666 Fifth Avenue, where the family is now severely underwater. Qatar is facing an ongoing blockade led by Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates and joined by Egypt and Bahrain, which President Trump has taken credit for sparking. Kushner, meanwhile, has reportedly played a key behind-the-scenes role in hardening the U.S. posture toward the embattled nation. The blockade continued.
Inside the Koch Brothers' Toxic Empire - Rolling Stone
The enormity of the Koch fortune is no mystery. Brothers Charles and David are each worth more than $40 billion. The electoral influence of the Koch brothers is similarly well-chronicled. The Kochs are our homegrown oligarchs; they've cornered the market on Republican politics and are nakedly attempting to buy Congress and the White House.
Your Favorite Housewares Are Spewing Poison Dust Inside Your Home
People buy the nicest homes they can afford. They spend years—sometimes decades—pouring money into nest-feathering by stocking up on creature comforts. It’s no wonder we spend 90 percent of our lives indoors. Like George Carlin said, it’s where all our stuff is.
In the Withdrawal from the Paris Climate Agreement, the Koch Brothers’ Campaign Becomes Overt
If there was any lingering doubt that a tiny clique of fossil-fuel barons has captured America’s energy and environmental policies, it was dispelled last week, when the Trump Administration withdrew from the Paris climate accord. Surveys showed that a majority of Americans in literally every state wanted to remain within the agreement, and news reports established that the heads of many of the country’s most successful and iconic Fortune 100 companies, from Disney to General Electric, did, too. Voters and big business were arrayed against leaving the climate agreement. Yet despite the majority’s sentiment, a tiny—and until recently, almost faceless—minority somehow prevailed. How this happened is no longer a secret.
Photo Credit: Ken Durden / Shutterstock.com This post originally appeared at Exposed by CMD. Denver’s massive Blue Bear will be peering in the windows as US Education Secretary Betsy DeVos headlines the 44th American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC) Annual Meeting being held at the Colorado Convention Center’s Hyatt Regency Hotel July 19-21. Other big names speaking at the event include Trump defender-in-chief Newt Gingrich, Labor Secretary Alexander Acosta, Secretary of the Interior Ryan Zinke, Republican pollster Frank Luntz and local megadonor and light beer magnate Peter Coors, who chairs the right-wing Coors Foundation. The Center for Media and Democracy reported that there will be a debate on the ALEC draft model bill to repeal the 17th Amendment, but many other controversial issues will be on the ALEC agenda as the meeting gets underway tomorrow. College Sexual Assault Takes Center Stage
Plummeting insect numbers 'threaten collapse of nature'
The world’s insects are hurtling down the path to extinction, threatening a “catastrophic collapse of nature’s ecosystems”, according to the first global scientific review. More than 40% of insect species are declining and a third are endangered, the analysis found. The rate of extinction is eight times faster than that of mammals, birds and reptiles. The total mass of insects is falling by a precipitous 2.5% a year, according to the best data available, suggesting they could vanish within a century.
Does The Republican Tax Bill Include a Loophole Benefitting Golf Course Owners?
The Republican-sponsored Tax Cuts and Jobs Act includes a deduction benefitting golf course owners. Even before it passed the House and headed to Senate on 16 November 2017, criticism mounted around one provision retained as part of in the Republican-sponsored Tax Cuts and Jobs Act. Though it is true the deduction in question benefits golf course owners like President Donald Trump, it precedes his administration.
The Deep History of the Radical Right’s Stealth Plan for America
Charles Koch, 79, in his office at Koch Industries in Wichita, Kansas, on July 29, 2015. (Photo by Nikki Kahn/The Washington Post via Getty Images) Author Nancy MacLean has unearthed a stealth ideologue of the American right. Her book, Democracy in Chains: The Deep History of the Radical Right’s Stealth Plan for America, tells the story of one James McGill Buchanan, a Southern political scientist and father of “public choice economics.”
People who think their opinions are superior to others are most prone to overestimating their relevant knowledge and ignoring chances to learn more
By guest blogger Tom Stafford We all know someone who is convinced their opinion is better than everyone else’s on a topic – perhaps, even, that it is the only correct opinion to have. Maybe, on some topics, you are that person.