Copenhagen: Turning Point or More of the Same Old Same Old?

This coming week, in New York City and Pittsburgh, there will be important United Nations and G20 meetings that could advance the process of coming up with a new international treaty to address the climate crisis. This coming week will also see the opening salvo of “civil society” groups in the streets taking action to press their demands for not just any treaty but one that is strong and fair, one that reflects the deepening of the crisis.

From December 7-18, in Copenhagen, Denmark, 190 or so nations will come together in for the annual U.N. Climate Conference, but this one is particularly important. One reason is that it will be the first one in eight years where the U.S. delegation will be led by people who believe that climate change is real, serious and that action is needed to address it. But much more significant is that this is the U.N. conference that was planned, two years ago at a UN climate conference in Bali, Indonesia, as the place and the time that the world had to come up with a much stronger international climate treaty than the Kyoto Protocol.

The Kyoto Protocol became operative on February 16, 2005, and as of sometime in 2012 it will no longer be in effect. The countries which signed it and agreed to reduce their emissions by an average of 5% below 1990 levels have until then to do so. At that point, if there is no international treaty that has been negotiated, ratified by enough countries and gone into effect, there will be nothing that replaces the expired Kyoto treaty.

Since it is expected that it will take at least two years for enough countries to ratify a treaty, the Copenhagen conference has been seen as critical so that there’s no gap in between Kyoto and a new treaty. However, as we’re less than three months out from Copenhagen, with 15 actual negotiating days between now and the end of Copenhagen (including five days in Barcelona, Spain Nov. 2-6), and with a significant number of major issues unresolved and points of conflict, especially between the countries of the Global South (developing countries) and the Global North (developed), it is not looking hopeful for any kind of treaty, much less a good one, to be adopted and signed at Copenhagen.

In March, Yvo de Boer, executive secretary of the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change and primary treaty negotiator, outlined his main priorities short of a finalized treaty. The talks, he said, needed to deliver clarity on near-term (by 2020) emissions cuts for both industrialized countries and developing countries, while industrialized countries needed to devote significant resources to help poorer nations invest in clean-energy tech and adapt to climate change. De Boer said if those things happened, “we have a robust architecture for a resounding response to climate change at the international level.”

The Major Issues

Over the last several months, the issue of climate justice obligations has become contentious and major. At the G20 meeting in Pittsburgh next week this issue is supposed to be worked on; Obama proposed that this be a central issue for this meeting at an earlier G20 meeting in July.

There are various projections for how much money is needed. The lowest figure by objective sources (not developing countries shirking their obligations) seems to be around $100 billion/year. Oxfam, the International Climate Action Network (CAN), the Alliance of Small Island Nations and African countries are calling for $150-160 billion/year. But a United Nations report that came out on September 1 said that the developing nations need a $500-600 billion/year “Marshall Plan” to tackle climate change. The World Economic and Social Survey called for a “Global Sustainable New Deal” to overcome the “woefully inadequate” estimate of 21 billion dollars annually currently set aside internationally to adapt to and cope with climate change.

$500-600 billion is 1% of world GDP. It’s also less than what the U.S. spends each year on its military budget.

It is not a good sign that, about a week ago, the European Union announced that they would contribute no more than $15 billion/year of direct assistance. Their proposal included language suggesting the EU could use part of the future development aid it has already promised for poor countries as part of its climate change contribution. An Oxfam leader said the proposal would “rob tomorrow’s hospitals and schools in developing countries to pay for them to tackle climate change now.”

The other major issue, of course, is how much the countries of the Global North will reduce their emissions. Related to this, for some countries, is how much the developing countries are willing to commit to doing—this is where the financing issue comes in very directly.

Things don’t look good as far as this issue. Obama’s current position is that it’s OK for the US to get back to or just above 1990 levels by 2020. The EU took a position many months ago that 20% below 1990 levels was what they were prepared to do. One recent positive development is that the newly-elected Japanese government has said they would aim for a 25% reduction by 2020.

At the 2007 Bali, Indonesia conference, there was agreement that 25-40% below 1990 levels is what was needed. Since then, International CAN, the Alliance of Small Island Nations, China and other countries have called for 40-45% cuts as the climate crisis has deepened.

Climate Movement Mobilizing Internationally

Fortunately, the growing, grassroots international climate movement is not sitting back and hoping for the best. There are several major mobilization efforts that have been developing for months.

The first, after the New York and Pittsburgh actions this week, is an International Day of Climate Action on October 24th taking place, as of right now, in 116 countries, and those numbers are steadily growing. Initiated by Bill McKibben and 350.org (www.350.org), this day promises to give a major push to the efforts for a treaty that is commensurate with the seriousness of the climate crisis.

The Mobilization for Climate Justice (MCJ) is a network of more radical and grassroots-based groups which is planning an international day of action on November 30th. In the US, CPR for the Planet, connected to the MCJ, is gathering up thousands of names of people willing to do nonviolent civil disobedience if 10,000 sign up. Some of these activists will be in Copenhagen where there will be efforts during the conference to engage in direct action to underline the urgency of the crisis.

During the Copenhagen conference, on December 12th, there will be a Global Day of Action being organized by the Global Climate Campaign, which has been steadily building up the international movement since 2005. This year the Global Campaign for Climate Action, with significant resources and organizational networks, has taken up the call for actions on December 12th, as well as the 350.org October 24th actions, which will make both of them more extensive and larger.

One other initiative, smaller but potentially of much significance, is a Climate Justice Fast, being organized to begin on November 2nd and continue, for six people as of now, until and through the Copenhagen conference. Others will be fasting for shorter periods of time. Begun by young people in Australia, there are currently people from a dozen countries part of this growing network.

For the core group of six and any others who join them before November 2, they will be eating nothing and drinking only water over the course of these 47 days. Some of them will be inside the Copenhagen conference, visible every day to delegates from around the world and the world’s press.

A Time of Testing

These next three months will be a serious reality check for those throughout the world who understand the seriousness of the climate crisis, and for those people of all political persuasions who see themselves as responsible human beings. Time is literally running out.

Those of us living now have an awesome responsibility. Our situation is not hopeless, but it is extremely urgent. We must force the governments of the world to take action ASAP if we are to have any hope of avoiding catastrophic climate change. This fall is decisive.

Ted Glick is the National Campaign Coordinator of the Chesapeake Climate Action Network. He can be followed on twitter at http://twitter.com/jtglick. Read other articles by Ted, or visit Ted's website.

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  1. Don Hawkins said on September 21st, 2009 at 11:33am #

    ATLANTA, Georgia (CNN) — Torrential downpours overnight in metropolitan Atlanta, Georgia, led to floods that killed two people, a spokeswoman for the Georgia Emergency Management Agency said Monday.

    Another person was reported missing, said Dena Brummer.
    About 100 miles north, in Chattanooga, Tennessee, one person was swept into rushing water and is presumed drowned, said Jeremy Heidt, a spokesman for the Tennessee Emergency Management Agency in Nashville.
    And in Chattooga County northwest of Atlanta, concerns that a levee might fail led 300 people to evacuate their homes in the city of Trion, where authorities opened a shelter for them in a church, Brummer said.
    “Conditions are dangerous,” she said about the waters, which have left most of metro Atlanta subject to flash floods. “We are encouraging people to stay at home and to stay off the roads if they can.”

    Is this climate change, no it’s all the tears coming from our so called leaders on health care and next the climate bill. Of course it’s climate change and think a little into the future only 10 then 20 years and multiply what we see now and not just in the Southeast US but Worldwide by a factor of five and welcome to the new World. There will be no climate bill from the greatest nation on Earth before Copenhagen and without that and even with it as cap and trade is a joke on the human race the Copenhagen summit a bust. It sure looks like just a few people among us who live in a all embracing fantasy world. Well that has become our total reality, that was well put Doug Page. Oh that’s not true oh yes it is the decision has been made from some old people only a few to go out in style and hold on to the out of control system as long as possible. Like Ted said hay that rhymes the next months about 8 should tell the story that is kind of important to the human race and a few other life forms on this mote of dust three away from the Sun. Who is this group who makes this kind of decision and get’s away with it well here’s two some of the people at Goldman Saks, bankers and the people who need those bankers to stay in power. The Article Doug Page wrote today put it well.

    The Bilderberg Group, Bilderberg conference, or Bilderberg Club is an unofficial, annual, invitation-only conference of around 130 guests, most of whom are persons of great influence in the fields of politics, business, and banking.

    List of Bilderberg participants

    Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke leaving the 2008 Bilderberg ConferenceThe steering committee does not publish a list of attendees, though some participants have publicly discussed their attendance. Historically, attendee lists have been weighted towards politicians, bankers, and directors of large businesses.

    Heads of state have attended meetings, including Juan Carlos I of Spain[15] and Queen Beatrix of the Netherlands.[6] Prominent politicians from North America and Europe are past attendees. In recent years, board members from many large publicly-traded corporations have attended, including IBM, Xerox, Royal Dutch Shell, Nokia and Daimler.

    The 2009 meeting participants in Greece included: Greek prime minister, Kostas Karamanlis; Finnish prime minister, Matti Vanhanen[16]; U.S. State Department number two, James Steinberg; U.S. Treasury Secretary, Timothy Geithner; World Bank president, Robert Zoellick; European Commission head, José Manuel Barroso; Queen Sofia of Spain; and Queen Beatrix of the Netherlands.

    Because of its secrecy and refusal to issue news releases, the group is frequently accused of secretive and nefarious world plots. Critics include the John Birch Society, the Canadian writer Daniel Estulin, British writer David Icke, American writer Jim Tucker and radio host Alex Jones.

    Bilderberg founding member and, for 30 years, a steering committee member, Denis Healey has said:

    “ To say we were striving for a one-world government is exaggerated, but not wholly unfair. Those of us in Bilderberg felt we couldn’t go on forever fighting one another for nothing and killing people and rendering millions homeless. So we felt that a single community throughout the world would be a good thing. ”

    According to the American Friends of Bilderberg, the 2008 agenda dealt “mainly with a nuclear free world, cyber terrorism, Africa, Russia, finance, protectionism, US-EU relations, Afghanistan and Pakistan, Islam and Iran”.

    This secrecy, and lack of reporters in attendance was also noted by Guardian writer Charlie Skelton in his reports on the 2009 conference held in Athens, Greece. Skelton himself was detained by police on three occasions for taking photographs in the vicinity of the conference resort.

    This group, gang in the twenty first century very sure have changed there ideas about how the World should work. Of course they only meet once a year to play bridge and of course don’t talk during the year.

    We will know very soon if the decision has been made to let the human race go down the drain in not such slow motion. Thank you History Channel that was good stuff. Remember the truth the knowledge we have they have illusion and control the media. How hard could it be have you seen those people on the media lately there not doing well.

  2. Don Hawkins said on September 21st, 2009 at 12:15pm #

    http://www.cpc.ncep.noaa.gov/products/analysis_monitoring/lanina/images/glbSSTProbSea.gif

    Look at the chart of the oceans one more time and we always’ hear sometime this Century climate change will be a problem. Sometime this Century is NOW. I guess these bankers and the people who need them to stay oh so powerful get to decide the fate of my kid’s. They have been doing it for many moons now and it looks like they get to make the last decision for the human race must be a real kick. Again how hard could it be they control the media the banks the policy and we have the truth the knowledge and we out number them about 300,000,000 to 1. There control is build on illusion and now they are in control of an out of control system. How hard could it be. In about 8 months we get to see then what? That is a very good question. That chart just look ahead a little 10 years and get some good boots you will need them. Still time with a Herculean effort and everything should be made as simple as possible but not simpler. The bankers and the people who need them to go out in style don’t like that one, the darkside.

  3. Don Hawkins said on September 21st, 2009 at 12:42pm #

    Heck how about Glenn Beck over there at Fox News who likes to put pictures of people who belong to groups, gangs, org’s on a blackboard and draw lines and connect the dot’s so to speak. Hay Glenn how about this Bilderberg Group, Bilderberg conference, or Bilderberg Club, or Bilderberg gang go for it dude show us what your made of Rupert will be just fine. Put there pictures up on your big board and draw some lines where all roads lead to Rome sorry lost it there for a second where all roads lead to the whole damn system. Come on Glenn go for it dude think big.

  4. Charlie said on September 21st, 2009 at 1:46pm #

    One of the most persistent obstacles to developing a united, effective response to global climate change is, quite simply, the people in charge.

    We live in a world that rarely sees significant social and economic shifts unless those changes are directed by world leaders and corporations, whose interests are typically at odds with those of the Earth and most of its citizens. Hence, we look to Copenhagen for solutions, but we send the people who made the problem to represent us. The Obama Administration may have a more enlightened attitude toward global climate change, but its priorities are still those of politicians.

    The politicians attend these meeting with the primary goals of protecting their individual nations’ economic interests and getting more than they give. With international treaties, the resulting need for compromises always takes the form of a watering down of anything that could work–to the point that the treaty becomes little more than a feel-good PR campaign, with press releases that basically say, “We care but we’re not really going to do much.” Or worse, the accords become shell games that look like progress but are really nothing more than con games that protect polluters and big business.

    In addition, Copenhagen-style meetings rarely result in any (1) compliance monitoring activities by independent groups, (2) enforcement mechanisms, and (3) penalties for non-compliance. Nations simply self-report progress and then walk away regardless of their accomplishments or lack thereof.

    As I see it, the real threats of global climate change cannot be adequately addressed by politicians. We must find a way to get them to cede the issue to credible scientists. Citizens of the world’s nations trust scientists more than they trust politicians, so those scientists may be able to suggest real and viable solutions to the problems confronting us. Also, an effective metric for monitoring progress–complete with the power to impose stiff penalties–must be implemented.

    Right now, climate change is a political game played by politicians. We will all be better off when it becomes an environmental issue being addressed by our best scientists.

  5. Don Hawkins said on September 21st, 2009 at 2:01pm #

    Charlie now your talking. I have wondered why they don’t get together for real and give it a try and soon.

  6. Don Hawkins said on September 22nd, 2009 at 3:48am #

    A two-judge panel of a federal appeals court has ruled that big power companies can be sued by states and land trusts for emitting carbon dioxide. The decision, issued Monday, overturns a 2005 District Court decision that the question was political, not judicial.

    The power companies said that the federal courts had never recognized an argument in common law that greenhouse gas emissions contribute to global warming, and that if action were to be taken, Congress would have to do it.

    At American Electric Power, Pat D. Hemlepp, a spokesman, said the company’s lawyers had not decided whether to appeal. But he added: “We don’t feel that litigation is a proper avenue to address climate concerns. In our view, it’s a policy issue.” NYT

    The power company’s don’t feel that litigation is a proper avenue to address climate concerns. In our view, it’s a policy issue. Well golly gee I wonder why not? Not just the power company’s but let’s see manufacturing, oil, coal, Wall Street, did I leave anybody out?

    The Bilderberg Group, Bilderberg conference, or Bilderberg Club is an unofficial, annual, invitation-only conference of around 130 guests, most of whom are persons of great influence in the fields of politics, business, and banking.

    Well golly gee persons of great influence in the fields of politics, business, and banking and that whole In our view, it’s a policy issue yes I’ll bet it is. I wonder could this Bilderberg gang sorry group effect policy in anyway after all they are persons of great influence in the fields of politics, business, and banking? How does that go United States and in DC so far cap and trade a joke on the human race is the best they can do and of course persons of great influence in the fields of politics, business, and banking don’t have anything to do with policy this is a Democracy or is that a Republic.

    Democracy
    Government by the people, exercised either directly or through elected representatives.
    A political or social unit that has such a government.
    The common people, considered as the primary source of political power.
    Majority rule.
    The principles of social equality and respect for the individual within a community.

    Republic
    a state in which the supreme power rests in the body of citizens entitled to vote and is exercised by representatives chosen directly or indirectly by them.

    Now wait one little minute here this Bilderberg Group, Bilderberg conference, or Bilderberg Club, gang persons of great influence in the fields of politics, business, and banking just common folk, considered as the primary source of political power oh that’s not the way it work’s. Yes you can say that again not work as now we the people are in control of an out of control system thank’s to persons of great influence in the fields of politics, business, and banking and there great wisdom and knowledge. This of course is just a conspiracy theory and is not the way the system real work’s it’s the common people, considered as the primary source of political power.
    Majority rule.

    Even when presented with facts that challenge this gigantic delusion, being frightened, hypnotized, addicted, and brainwashed, we reject them. The irony is that the delusion is so grandiose, that one like me who challenges it, runs the risk of seeming to be a grandiose crazy individual. Doug Page

    Let us watch the greatest nation on Earth the next 8 months and one big gigantic delusion as we all go down the drain in not such slow motion the we being about 6 billion plus.

  7. Don Hawkins said on September 22nd, 2009 at 4:30am #

    Now just on the off chance that this Bilderberg Club is not a conspiracy theory about a million to one that they do have a little influence on policy I wonder what a phone call from one of the club members to a policy maker might sound like? Mr. McConnell you have a phone call from somebody at Goldman the bank. Mitch do you know who this is? Yes. Well Mitch I have 130 pissed off people just what the hell are you people doing? Do you enjoy that free lunch the benefits your job? Get the word out Mitch there will be hell to pay if any of this legislation goes though even close to what it looks like now. Do I make myself clear? Yes sir. Mitch are you ok come over here and sit down nice cup of coffee. Remember this is only a conspiracy theory and if you even think of such things well.

    Even when presented with facts that challenge this gigantic delusion, being frightened, hypnotized, addicted, and brainwashed, we reject them. The irony is that the delusion is so grandiose, that one like me who challenges it, runs the risk of seeming to be a grandiose crazy individual.

    So best to just go shopping listen to your leaders and watch your parking meters. Oh Brother, Where Art Thou?

  8. Don Hawkins said on September 22nd, 2009 at 5:35am #

    Rudy Giuliani was just on CNBC and was asked about climate change and this whole carbon thing. He said we need to slowdown we move to fast we got to make the morning last. I added a few words but he did say we need to slowdown because we are going to bury our children in a mountain of debt. Interesting choice of words. Steve Forbes is on next and I am sure more great wisdom and old Steve and freedom work’s and those signs. Think of this as kind of a war calm at peace we have the knowledge the truth they control the media the banks the policy how hard can it be. We outnumber them about 150,000,000 to one and the people who have been frightened, hypnotized, addicted, and brainwashed will need help. Not easy but boring it will not be. The truth the knowledge and the people who know it. You know who they are easy now to see.

  9. Don Hawkins said on September 22nd, 2009 at 11:29am #

    “It seems to me that Copenhagen is not the end of this,” said Tim Wirth, the president of the UN Foundation, and the man who, in the 1980s, helped to write the first cap-and-trade plan for acid rain. He added: “We are going to have Copenhagens for the rest of our lives.”

  10. Annie Ladysmith said on September 22nd, 2009 at 11:25pm #

    Don’t you people GET that all of these so called “CRISIS’S” are all completely manufactered. Why are you worried about the fake global warming crisis when this very year we’re all going to be dying from the ‘swine-human-avian flu. WHO is telling all the governments to get every person vaccinated because it’s going to be so bad there may not be a need for another war, there’s going to be no-one left alive. Well, except the elite in their underground world.

    The world is getting colder, record cold temps. where i live for 2 months in the winter, shorter growing seasons with stunted useless crops, the evidence of the dimming of the sun. I guess we all need a cause to die for but what we can agree on is the climate is irregular with a level of greater intensity to it’s affects. This could be man-made and as 95% of science is Top Secret, who would know, something to think about if you can get off that same old treadmill, global warming.

  11. Hue Longer said on September 23rd, 2009 at 2:31am #

    Annie,

    Your unintended irony aside, the Flu Flu has been killing people just fine for years. I do agree somewhat that more immediate dangers (nuclear war, ecocide regardless of climate change) are out there but you’re way off with your idea of science being top secret. Understanding a particular field of study is hard enough for a scientist outside it to understand-much less a layman, but understanding what it takes to develop theory amidst peer review is obtainable for those who wish to learn

  12. Don Hawkins said on September 23rd, 2009 at 5:24am #

    The research underscores the complex interaction between the world’s oceans and a warming atmosphere.

    Oceans help to contain global warming by absorbing about half of the carbon dioxide released by humans into the atmosphere, but the water also expands as it warms, raising sea levels.

    It could also have a big impact on climate through feedback mechanisms, such as the melting of seaside glaciers and changes to ocean currents that warm or cool different parts of the globe.

    In the June-August period, the world’s ocean surface temperature was the warmest on record since 1880, according to the U.S. National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. The surface temperature was 62.5 F (17 Celsius), 1 degree F (0.6 degrees C) above the 20th century average. Meteorologists say the reason was El Nino weather patterns combined with manmade global warming.

    The North Atlantic has seen especially large changes in recent years.

    The temperature of the water that flows into the Arctic has increased by as much as 3.5 F (2 C) since the 1990s, says Helge Drange, professor of oceanography at Norway’s University of Bergen. “This can only be understood as a combined effect of natural variability and manmade warming,” he says.

    That has had a big impact on marine ecosystems, with fish traveling north into waters that were previously too cold for them. For example, more than 20 new species of fish have been found off Iceland, including blue sharks and flounders.

    Meanwhile, cod has followed the warm water as it flows around Greenland’s southern tip and up the giant island’s west coast. “If you talk to local people they say it’s fantastic because the Atlantic cod is coming,” Drange says.

    To many scientists, however, the shifts in ocean currents are no cause for celebration. Even if there’s natural variability, there’s concern that global warming may make the fluctuations more extreme.

    And while some species thrive in warmer water, others that live on the edge of the Arctic, such as polar bears and seals, find their habitat melting away.

    “We’re heading off to a climate extreme and this is just going to snowball,” says Curry, reflecting on the state of the global climate on the Greenpeace icebreaker hosting the Woods Hole research team.

    “I think that we’ve done it, really kicked Earth’s climate system. And that says a lot,” she says. “It’s a beast. It’s huge. And to have moved it in as short a period of time as a 100 years, basically, to have done that is enormous.” AP

    What we have already done lot’s of burning to late for many changes and I hope you got some boots. Obama gave the speech yesterday at the UN and so far talk words and no action. In England the Prince asked people to stop driving now that’s a start that thinking. Is the problem that serious yes it sure is. I have to admit the thinking in the States from policy makers is second grade stuff. 4% of the population using 25 % of the stuff well now China seems to think that is a good idea. How big was that coal fired plant in India just build? Again Copenhagen just words then the climate bill in the States a joke does little then what? We waited to long so to try now means very hard choices. It’s a beast and it will kick our ass it’s already started. We are out of time to try and words and talk and a few green projects is illusion. I guess there is two words growth and population growth because of the same thinking and now the economy just debt that has caused climate change more and have more and population same more and have more without thought. I don’t know but in about 8 months or so after just words to be lied to over and over again in dreamworld, clowntown and listen to this group or that gang for the time before the beast really kick’s ass seems so mindless. So far that is the game on the third one from the Sun and so it goes.

  13. Mulga Mumblebrain said on September 23rd, 2009 at 5:55pm #

    Don, we are being bombarded with propaganda here in Australia, portraying our peculiar Prime Minister, Kevin Rudd, as some sort of global guru, a pandit of climate change. In reality Rudd is a total phony. He signed Kyoto, but at meetings in Poznan and Bali Australia’s position was virtually indistinguishable from that under arch-denialist John Howard. Rudd’s emissions reduction target is a contemptible and risible 5% by 2020. His preferred mechanism for reduction the market fundamentalist imbecility of ‘emissions trading’, but with tens of billions of compensation already promised for every highly polluting industry from coal mining to burning brown coal for electricity. He is an arch-advocate of the fraud of ‘Carbon Capture and Storage’ always presented as if just around the corner, but, in reality, decades away, if ever feasible, all to protect the vested economic interests of the fossil fuel mafia.
    Renewable energy still receives a pittance in subsidy, energy efficiency, being contradictory to increasing profits for electricity generators and retailers, is totally ignored, and plans are constantly unveiled for yet greater coal-mining, more railroads to transport it and vastly increased port capacity.
    At the same time the Right, unchallenged by Rudd, are mounting an intense propaganda campaign to sell the idea of a vastly increased Australian population, all in the name of that highest good, endless economic growth. At a time when our major river system, the Murray-Darling, is dying, estuaries are eutrophying and acidifying, mega-fires rage almost every year, the Great Barrier Reef is dying and drought is tightening its grip over the south, the morally insane market fundamentalists simply deny it all. They close their ears and eyes to the relevant scientific experts who have shown that the continent is already over-populated. One wonders just why we bother to keep training scientists and paying for research, when their findings are simply ignored or pilloried by our real rulers, the psychopaths of the Right in politics, business and the media, who know everything, instinctively and in total contradiction of the facts, simply by virtue of their mastery of the idiocies of voodoo economics and market fundamentalism.
    I don’t know if you’ve seen it Don, but this week Sydney was submerged by the vastest dust-storm for at least seventy years, if not ever. The city awoke to a nightmarish invocation of a Martian dawn, as the sky turned blood-red, later replaced by an eerie orange glow that lasted for hours. Pollution readings of particulates were one thousand times greater than previous high readings. And in the face of it the blogs were replete with denialist cretins falsely asserting that such storms were common, in their youth, or just another natural occurrence with no link to climate change, which in any case does not exist and is a Communist conspiracy. I find the unshakeable, lemming like refusal of the denialist dullards, who are vastly proliferating and growing ever more arrogant and belligerent, to face reality, the final proof that we are doomed. That humanity when faced with unprecedented horror, retreats into idiocy and self-delusion, doesn’t surprise me, it merely confirms dreadful intimations I have held, since childhood, concerning the true nature of the human psyche.