I’m going to be away from the keyboard the first part of today, but the strike for the planet’s climate has begun and is sweeping around the globe.

I know there’s too much going on. What are you doing for the climate?

Open thread!

44 replies
  1. 1
    Baud says:

    What are you doing for the climate?

    Not reproducing and voting D.

  2. 2
    NotMax says:

    Putting the heat on, as it were.

  3. 3
    Cermet says:

    Not since the black death has the world faced a bigger danger than AGW. Most people don’t either get it or fail to grasp what is gonna happen in thirty to fifty years. That Billions of humans will be displaced, along with vast areas then being unable to produce the food that had supported them isn’t something the world has every seen or is equipped to handle. As it looks, this disaster appears bake in. If we continue to to allow this warming to continue, even that terrible consequence will just be the start. Think about that and what we are allowing thanks to the elite 0.001% wanting to make their money off the carbon still in the ground.

  4. 4
    laura says:

    This is my kinda globalism.
    One World Order.
    And a child shall lead them.

  5. 5
    Gin & Tonic says:


    fail to grasp what is gonna happen in thirty to fifty years

    Good thing I’ll be dead.

  6. 6
    Sab says:

    I am almost out of dry cat food, because my grocery has stopped carrying Purina cat chow (!?) so I didn’t get more yesterday This should be interesting to not buy more today. Four cats will be fine and happy, fifth cat won’t eat wet food. I guess I ‘ll knock on neighbors’ doors with cup in hand.

  7. 7

    As usual, I’m amazed and heartened when these protest rise up and so many people show up. With all the awful going on, I’m afraid climate change is the most urgent.

    What am I doing? – at the moment the minimum in my mind. I still use too much plastic, but I have a plug-in hybrid, my home has all available energy upgrades – insulation, house fan, furnace, water heater, light bulbs, windows. If it was possible, I’d have solar, but have been told, roof-line and tree cover would not make that possible. Amazing part of all that – I save money every month on natural gas, electricity and gas. You know, like everyone would if we had a green economy and upgraded everyone.

    And I preach energy efficiency wherever I go. It annoys my family.

  8. 8
    Baud says:


    It’s unfortunately necessary to point this out.

    The Surprising Truth About Environmentalists and Voting

  9. 9
    Karen says:

    And Trump ramps up his plan to make the country as polluted as possible.

  10. 10
    germy says:

    This video:

    Smug, mediocre, Republican Congressman takes on @GretaThunberg

    Greta proceeds to:

    -remind him she's a badass

    -destroy the very premise of his question

    -roast him when he misses her pt

    Imagine a future w/Greta asking the q's. To get there, we must first heed her call to action. pic.twitter.com/GW2UefQZHC

    — Buffy Wicks (@BuffyWicks) September 19, 2019

  11. 11
    CaseyL says:

    I didn’t reproduce (and every day I’m glad of that!). I conserve water, recycle/compost, and have no A/C in my house.

    Buy items in glass bottles/jars whenever possible. If you ever see someone at the grocery store tapping a whole line of bottles of olive oil, instant coffee, mayonnaise, etc., and saying “aha!” when she finds one made of glass – that’s me!

    I do wish someone would come out with non-plastic bottles of shampoo/conditioner. I think I saw one brand online that puts their stuff in toothpaste-style metal tubes, but I haven’t seen that product on the shelves.

  12. 12
    germy says:

    I love you @GretaThunberg and I'm sorry we've left you with this mess. You're a bigger person than I am for not asking @RepGarretGraves to clean up the oil spill on his head. #ClimateChangeIsReal https://t.co/HcrgyrIcuT— Molly McNearney (@mollymcnearney) September 20, 2019

  13. 13
    germy says:

    Off topic, but these photos are beautiful:

    Members of the African Choir, who all had portraits taken at the London Stereoscopic Company in 1891 pic.twitter.com/qfS2mYAg6w— Fritters (@YoorWullie) September 18, 2019

  14. 14
    The Moar You Know says:

    It’s unfortunately necessary to point this out.

    @Baud: Yes it is. The bad guys vote every election, every time, until they die.

    The “good guys” vote if they fucking feel like it. I don’t know how you fix that.

    I’m on the Baud! plan. No kids, vote D. Also all LED bulbs. The biggest obstacle to that was my wife. Women are a bit more color-sensitive than men, and the early LED bulbs were a no-go. They’re finally good enough that she’s given the nod. It dropped the electric bill a surprising amount.

    Probably get a ration of shit for this, but nuclear is carbon-neutral. Very much in favor of it, though it looks like I’ve been overruled by the ignorant. Isn’t the first time, won’t be the last.

  15. 15
    rp says:

    @Baud: That article didn’t say anything.

  16. 16
    rikyrah says:

    I agreed with Maddow’s original hypothesis – they honestly didn’t think anyone would care about people being sent to certain death. You can tell that, by how they were unprepared by the blowback.

    Trump admin backs off plan to deport critically ill children
    09/20/19 10:00 AM
    By Steve Benen

    It was about a month ago when we first learned that the Trump administration was threatening critically ill children with deportation. As regular readers may recall, it was almost hard to believe.

    For all of Donald Trump’s talk about targeting “bad hombres” to keep Americans safe, in this case, his administration was targeting children receiving treatment for life-threatening ailments who’d been granted “medical deferred action.” By threatening the kids and their families with deportation, the administration’s U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services was effectively delivering death sentences.

    The policy was almost cartoonish in its malevolence. Even critics of the Republican White House, who’ve come to expect the worst from Trump and his team, were taken aback by the reports. These families were told they had 33 days to leave the country. There was no opportunity to appeal or challenge the decision.

    As Rachel noted at the top of last night’s show, the policy in question is no more.

    The Trump administration formally backed away from plans to deport critically ill immigrant children in a notification sent to Congress Thursday.

    In a letter sent to the House Oversight Committee, the Department of Homeland Security said that it is “resuming its consideration of non-military deferred action requests on a discretionary, case-by-case basis.”

  17. 17

    What are you doing for the climate?

    Continuing to preach to deaf ears that we should be focusing on large-scale collective action and regulations instead of arguing about straws & other “personal choice” marginalia that don’t really affect global emissions?

  18. 18
    rikyrah says:

    White Voters Threw a Tantrum in 2016. Black Voters Are Responding With Pragmatism.
    By Zak Cheney-Rice


    None of these deficiencies were unforeseeable, nor do they seem especially troubling to many of his supporters. They might even be endearing: At least one study suggests that a small but influential contingent of Trump acolytes takes pleasure in chaos and revels in the president’s lies while conducting their own online misinformation campaigns. Even those who feel differently aren’t especially put off — Trump’s approval ratings among his fellow Republicans have rarely dipped below 80 percent since he took office. In 2016, he won white voters across gender, age, and income levels by healthy margins, and if he wins again in 2020, it will likely be with a similar coalition. That so many whites and Republicans, a party which is overwhelmingly white, have responded to the alleged perception of lost social standing by electing the most visibly unhinged, inexperienced, and insecure candidate in the field speaks volumes about their cost-benefit analysis — but might say even more about their fellow voters who also faced uncertain futures but responded differently.

    Specifically, there are few measures by which black Americans aren’t traditionally among the most socially and financially precarious. From median income and homeownership to employment, education, and arrest and incarceration rates, most social indexes find black people at or near the bottom and whites at the top. This is exacerbated by black Americans’ long-term role as political punching bags — from their Reagan-era casting as leeches bleeding government coffers dry to the Bush- and Clinton-era crackdowns on black poverty, despair, and addiction through harsher policing and imprisonment. Trump, for his part, has vacillated between describing black people as filth-dwellers of questionable citizenship and lambasting black luminaries for protesting racism and not thanking him loudly enough for all the things he thinks he’s done for their communities. Yet there’s been no comparable gravitation by black voters en masse toward a bigoted autocrat vowing retributive violence against their political opponents. On the contrary, black voters have overwhelmingly embraced pragmatism — sometimes to a fault.

    The Trump presidency — as with plenty before it — is as amenable as any to radical countermeasures by black people. Instead, polls indicate that black primary voters are coalescing behind Joe Biden, whom many believe has the best odds of defeating the Republican in 2020. “We just want to win,” Michael Nutter, the black former mayor of Philadelphia, told Politico earlier this month, explaining why black voters are backing Biden early despite the abundance of younger, nonwhite, and more progressive options. “Because Donald Trump is so damaging and so frightening to many people in this country … the primary theme is, ‘I just want to be with someone who I believe can actually win.’ And that’s what people care about.” The tradeoff is significant: Biden’s history of cozy relationships with segregationists is not just well known — he’s boasted about it. As a senator, he authored the 1994 crime bill that lent federal sanction to mass-incarceration efforts nationwide, which affected black people disproportionately. His various gaffes — calling then-presidential candidate Barack Obama “the first mainstream African-American who is articulate and bright and clean”; saying that “[poor] kids are just as bright and just as talented as white kids” — not only cast doubt on his understanding of how racism manifests in political discourse, but his political instincts more generally. But the tradeoff has also occasioned what might on its surface appear to be strange bedfellows: Biden’s early polling lead is driven by support from both black voters and Democrats more likely to hold racist and sexist views than their counterparts who support Senators Bernie Sanders, Elizabeth Warren, and Kamala Harris — the three who, along with Biden, round out the top four candidates in most polls.


    And there are other factors driving their support for Biden: That younger black voters prefer Sanders while older ones back Obama’s former vice-president likely stems from generational disagreements about the salience of uncompromising progressivism and the goodwill generated by the first black presidency. But in neither case are black voters backing a radical or someone vowing violence. In fact, most are supporting the candidate whose experience and record are best-known to them, and who they feel presents the least possibility for error. Whether they’ve arrived at the right conclusion, even by those metrics, is debatable, and there’s plenty of time for things to change — the Democratic primaries are still months away. But so far, black voter behavior leading up to 2020 is a damning indictment of white voter behavior in 2016. The majority of white voters saw a flicker of precariousness and threw the Election Day equivalent of a tantrum. Black people — for whom precariousness is, in a disproportionate share of cases, a persistent condition — have responded by reinvesting in a status quo that’s rarely worked for them, knowing intimately how much worse things can get.

  19. 19
  20. 20
    Steve in the ATL says:

    I can’t strike so I’m locking out the climate. Like I do almost every day.

  21. 21
    NeenerNeener says:

    97% energy-efficient furnace, solar panels, led light bulbs, plug-in hybrid car, reusable grocery bags, energy star appliances. I can’t think of anything else at the moment.

  22. 22
    rikyrah says:

    Younger Black Voters to Their Parents: Break Up With Joe Biden, I’m Bored
    An organic effort by black millennials and Gen Z-ers to influence older family members against Mr. Biden may be important in the Democratic primary.

    By Astead W. Herndon
    Sept. 20, 2019
    Updated 10:50 a.m. ET


    If Mr. Biden, 76, is going to win the Democratic nomination, it is likely to be because of the support of older black voters, a key constituency for the party and one that polls show is overwhelmingly supportive of the former vice president’s candidacy.

    But if he is to be overtaken by one of his more progressive rivals, the most powerful tool against him may not be opposition research or negative advertisements. Instead, it may be an organic effort by younger black voters — concerned about Mr. Biden’s age and more moderate ideology — to sway their older family members.

    Mr. Biden seems aware of this dynamic. In interviews, he has both acknowledged the generational gap among his black supporters and downplayed its importance, arguing that the support of older, more moderate black voters would be enough to give him an electoral advantage.


    It also comes back to Mr. Obama, and the long shadow he casts over national Democratic politics, particularly in black communities. Older black voters invoke his name in deference, and cite his embrace of Mr. Biden as something that helped him win the trust of skeptical white voters in 2008.

  23. 23

    @Major Major Major Major: So much this. People are reluctant (yes, even those of us who care about the environment) to give up what we are used to, but there are global solutions out there that will solve this crisis. We just have to have the political and social will to demand it.

    And again, I remind everyone I can (and yes, deaf ears always!) that a green economy is a healthy, vibrant economy.

  24. 24
    noname says:

    @Major Major Major Major: YES. I can’t buy a box of plastic straws that will last me a year or more and shut my kids up but I can go into BJ’s or Costco and see shelves and shelves of tiny jars encased in giant plastic “anti-theft” clamshells that are impossible to open and I STILL have to show my receipt to prove I didn’t steal anything?

  25. 25
    opiejeanne says:

    @germy: They are beautiful portraits of beautiful people. The photographer was an artist and the subjects were beautiful and dignified.

  26. 26
    Kay says:

    Peter Alexander
    Asked whether he discussed Joe Biden with the Ukrainian leader, Trump says “It doesn’t matter what I discussed.”

    Lawless and proud of it. The low quality Trump hires are bragging that they “laughed” at the whistleblower complaint.

    I thought about this with Bush’s Unitary Executive and I still wonder about it. Why work so hard to get in Congress if you’re not going to use any of the constitutional powers you have? It goes against everything I thought I understood about power. I, personally, would use mine. If only because it was so hard to get it. All that horrible campaigning and money raising and scrutiny of your family, and for what? So you can be subordinate to these crooked, low quality douchebags?

  27. 27
    Fair Economist says:

    Disposable plastics are a pollution issue, but not a meaningful emissions issue.

  28. 28
    Patricia Kayden says:

    It’s heartening to see so many people around the world marching to demand action on climate change. Good job, Ms. Thunberg!!

  29. 29

    @TaMara (HFG): On the other side of the coin, a lot of liberals like the feeling of sacrificing for a cause because they are good people, but then stop at said personal-choice actions because they’ve so internalized the impossibility of regulations and collective action that they think they’ve done their part.

    I definitely see a kind of this in myself, where sweeping business regulations make me think “but we can’t do that!” since I’m so indoctrinated by America’s bizarre form of capitalism.

    On the ground here in NYC a lot of the activism is around banning cars from parts of midtown and building more bike lanes, both of which are great and meaningful. Unfortunately there are a lot of wealthy liberal NIMBYs who’ve already “done their part” & don’t like the idea of giving up their free street parking or letting the carless hordes into their neighborhoods.

    @Fair Economist:

    Disposable plastics are a pollution issue, but not a meaningful emissions issue.

    And yet fighting over that is taking up valuable legislative time we could be using regulating emissions.

  30. 30
    Chacal Charles Calthrop says:

    @The Moar You Know: if you want color sensitive LED bulbs, may I recommend Phillips Hue. They screw into ordinary light sockets & allow you to set your lights at whatever color you want – and all the colors are gorgeous, and I mean gorgeous:

  31. 31
    rikyrah says:

    The Crown season 3: BRAND NEW teaser FINALLY features Olivia Colman in action as Queen Elizabeth II… and Claire Foy makes a SHOCK cameo

    PUBLISHED: 09:15 EDT, 20 September 2019 | UPDATED: 10:58 EDT, 20 September 2019

    Netflix has finally dropped a meaty teaser for The Crown’s third season – in which Olivia Colman actually speaks.

    The Oscar-winner, 45, has taken over the role of Queen Elizabeth II in the royal drama, and the latest teaser gives fans a long-awaited glimpse at her portrayal of the monarch.

  32. 32
    PJ says:

    @Major Major Major Major: Yeah, this is the fact. Individuals should reduce their consumption levels, etc., but collective action, at a governmental and international level, is the only thing that is going to make meaningful reductions to carbon emissions. I think there is also a danger in our consumer-oriented thinking, reinforced in myriad ways by advertising, that what is most important in our lives and culture are the things we, as individuals, buy and use, and once we have made the correct personal choices, we have done our part. Those things, and choices, aren’t unimportant, but there are a lot more important things, and consumer choices aren’t going to create a political change.

    That said, as Fair Economist points out, there are other ecological issues besides global warming, and reducing the level of disposable plastic crap is still a good thing. @Fair Economist:

  33. 33
    PJ says:

    @Major Major Major Major: Legislatures can do both. Most of the plastics regulation is going on at a municipal or state level, and, while regulation of greenhouse gases can go on at a state level (such as California’s requirements for car sales), to be really effective, these laws have be national and international. I don’t think the problem is that we spend too much time squabbling over straws, but that the extraction industries have control over too many states and, as a result, too many national politicians, so that we have a President and Senate that profess to believe that climate change is not happening at all.

  34. 34
    Argiope says:

    @CaseyL: I’ve recently switched to shampoo & conditioner bars from Lush, that come in brown paper bags & can be stored in metal tins. The shampoo bars last surprisingly long & lather up well. I’m not as impressed with the conditioner bars but they are functional if you’re willing to wait an extra 30 seconds for them to soften up the outer layer so you can apply. Downside: entering the extreme fragrance environment of the store. But they’re also available online.

  35. 35
    Zzyzx says:

    My fear about global warming is that everyone is really willing to sacrifice things that they don’t care about. There’s tons of “you need to change your life,” but the advantages of our global economy and cheap travel are so enjoyable, that few are strong enough to really stop. So we all make changes around the edge (which isn’t a bad thing. It still helps) but aren’t willing to treat it like a real crisis. It’s frustrating.

    I’m not excluding myself here. I love to travel and know I should stop but I’d be miserable if I did and I’m not strong enough to do so.

    The straw thing is useful to show the immensity of the problem. A minor fix (let’s remove a wasteful product from our lives that few need) has become a huge deal. If we can’t even do that, how the hell are we going to be able to get everyone to agree to get rid of their cars?

  36. 36


    Legislatures can do both.

    Then why are they only banning plastics? To my earlier point: in NYC we can’t even get bike lanes built, but are seriously considering a straw ban. People need to focus on what matters, which means not focusing on what doesn’t.

    ETA it’s the politician’s syllogism: something must be done about the environment, banning straws is something, therefore we must ban straws; now that we’ve done something we can move on to the next item.

  37. 37
    opiejeanne says:

    @noname: Aren’t some of those clamshells recyclable? We clean up and wash every scrap of everything that can be recycled. I use plastic straws sparingly, and the place in Newport Beach where we ate several meals this week uses paper straws. I had one fail which is when I realized that they were paper. I decided I was a big girl and could drink from the glass, but paper straws are great.

    We bring our own grocery bags when we shop. When we have to have a plastic bag we save it for more uses until it finally ends up helping us clean the cat pans. We try not to collect them in the first place, though.

    We don’t have AC and this summer was really mild; we survived the worst of it with fans or by sitting in the shade outdoors. I don’t think we broke 90 here during the past 5 months, but that’s not something that can be counted on. We may have to resort to an AC system just for our health if we have more summers like the previous three.

    We have been getting reports from Puget Sound Energy for months that we are more energy efficient than our most energy efficient neighbors, so we’re doing something right. I’m going to ask them to only notify us by email instead of a letter in our mailbox. I’ve tried to get every company to only send e-bills and I think I’ve finally achieved that, with the exception of them, the guys who are congratulating us for energy efficiency. Arrgh!

    We maintain a garden that supports bees and birds. We’ve planted trees every year except this past one. I need to get some milkweed planted next spring, but borage and chives have kept our bees really happy. The rudbeckia has claimed most of the flower beds along the front of our house and it not only entertains the bees but when it’s finished blooming we leave the dead flower stalks at the end of the season for the little birds so they can eat the seeds. The flower heads and stems are usually blackened and dead by Hallowe’en and I think a “dead” garden is appropriate.

    An electric car will probably be our next step; maybe I can get mr opiejeanne a little more excited about it if we test drive a Tesla. It’s nice not having a car payment, though.

    I want solar panels but the price we’ve been quoted is prohibitive, and I really want at least one more trip to Europe before we’re too old to travel, maybe as part of a trip to Uganda to visit our niece. We’re not doing all we can, not yet.

  38. 38
    Zzyzx says:

    @opiejeanne: you’re doing really well though. I have no kids, drive a Prius (and am hoping to reduce my commute immensely when light rail expands in 2021), am a vegetarian, and make a conscious effort to have less stuff these days. Seattle’s power comes from renewables. Still though, I’m hyper aware of how bad my lifestyle is.

    My hope is that we figure out breakthroughs because I can’t see people voluntarily going back to a pre-industrial lifestyle. I don’t think we can feed 7 billion people that way for one thing.

  39. 39
    PJ says:

    @Major Major Major Major: This is the way most legislation works, in a piecemeal fashion. First it’s plastic straws and plastic bags and styrofoam containers, then they can move on to something else – it’s a first step, not a last one. Should a governor or president be leading the charge with comprehensive environmental laws? Yes, but it’s getting those people elected that’s the problem, and ultimately that’s a problem with voters.

    Re bike lanes, you are a newcomer to NYC, but there has been a huge increase in the number of bike lanes in the last fifteen or so years (thanks largely to Bloomberg, whom I otherwise do not like). The continued resistance to them comes from drivers, who resent having to share streets, and the police, who detest cyclists, and routinely park in bike lanes, hassle cyclists, and will not ticket drivers when they injure or kill cyclists. Again, it’s a problem with voters (and city council members who are more responsive to them.) Bloomberg made a lot of progress in this area because he didn’t care what voters thought and wasn’t dependent on campaign donations.

  40. 40
    Ruckus says:

    Yesterday I helped install LED lights to replace fluorescent fixtures by making a schematic for rewiring them for the shop gofer. Once all the lights are changed that will significantly reduce the lighting electrical usage in the shop by over 50%. Impossible to reduce the usage for most everything else, there aren’t alternatives for the machines, that use less current.
    Lots of small things add up.

  41. 41
    Ruckus says:

    You are not going to be able to get rid of individual vehicles until the cost is too high for most people and there are reasonable alternatives. Look at NYC. There is public transport – the subway that covers a lot of the city and yet people are still willing to drive into the city every day, even if parking is near impossible. Part of that of course is the growth of population and not the growth of more services. I commented on this in the last couple of days but the world population in 1800 was about 2 1/2 billion, today it is about 7 1/2 billion. It took thousands of years to get to 2 1/2 billion. Then it tripled in 200 yrs. The population of LA county in 1900 was about 170 thousand people. One hundred and ten yrs later it is about 10 million. Just a bit of growth. And bigger than several states.

  42. 42
    Dan B says:

    @opiejeanne: You’re doing great! Part of the key to success is doing the things that are easy and experiencing the rewards. The second part is knowing what steps you can do next. Teslas are amazing but there are many excellent high range cars coming out in a couple years. My partner is all about them. He’s a “gearhead” who knows every make, model, and year of cars except for some soviet makes and asian models. He’s always talking about how many dozen new electric cars and trucks are on the way..

    We went whole hog with solar pv, ductless heat pumps, LED lights, super air sealed and insulated house, electric car (we hate driving the internal combustion engine truck but need it a few times a month), and volunteer with a climate justice group.

    The solar pv, insulation, and heay pumps ate retirement savings but will be paid off in a couple years. Then it’s all free money. The drawback with the insulation and air sealing ius it’s never chilly enough to turn on the fireplace. Sigh..

  43. 43
    PJ says:

    @Ruckus: As you mention, there are too many people and not enough public transportation infrastructure. The subway is broken – it’s gotten better in the last couple of months, but it’s still broken. Mostly due to a mechanical signal system that was new when the subway opened over 100 years ago, but also general crumbling infrastructure, damage from Sandy, old trains, general lack of ADA compliance, etc. Meaning that it has difficulty transporting the commuters who now ride it every day. If everyone who drives to work in NYC were to take the subway (or the bus), the city would be paralyzed.

    That doesn’t mean public transportation shouldn’t be improved and expanded (there are big parts of the NYC that are transportation deserts), but until those improvements happen, it’s pointless to ask people to stop driving.

  44. 44
    debbie says:

    What a turnout!

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