News from the Ecosocialist Coalition

News from the Ecosocialist Coalition r1 ... System Change Not Climate Change news. r33

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  Ten years after the Inconvenient Truth, Al Gore presents another convenient infomercial for green capitalism, argues Mark Read, saying "he's an affable, decent fellow with a hue of misfortune hovering about him - but he consistently reveals the essential liimits of what the ruling class can imagine". Talia Buford reviews the institutionalized history of the "Office of Environmental Justice" and wonders, has the  "Moment for Environmental Justice has been lost?" Democrat Senator Sheldon Whitehouse gives a half-decent critique of Republicans and the US Chamber of Commerce calling the latter "a heavy hitter in Washington, the second largest spender of anonymous dark money on the 2016 federal election... and one of climate actions most implacable enemies."
  Ecosocialist Chris Williams reviews a new book "Marxism and the Earth: an Anti-Critique". A new study says 59,000 Indian farmers have commited suicide over 30 years linked to climate change. Scientists warn of "biological annihilation" in Amazon's rainforests as warming breaks records. Our Paris "climate budget" it seems, is 40% less than thought (what, that means we still have a carbon budget?) Greenpeace confronts Norway's Statoil in the Arctic. For the second straight week protestors in Richmond California are on lock-down at a Kinder Morgan in solidarity with First Nations in Canada. Cities are on the move with tobacco-style climate lawsuits in California, and Portland votes to defend its Fossil Fuel Policy against the state of Oregon.

Read these stories and more at the SCNCC website. Join the SCNCC Forum -  We have just initiated our new Forum, which is intended for discussion, information exchange, reports on activities of activists, announcements, sign-on to petitions and more. Please get involved!!

What's new in the Discussion Forum?

The Ezra Silk-Margaret Klein Salamon “Victory Plan”: limitations, contradictions, and questions

Join the conversation here. A week ago, Richard Smith, author of Green Capitalism, the God That Failed and Six Theses to Save the Planet, kicked off a featured online discussion with an insightful post analyzing the strengths and weaknesses of the “Victory Plan” put forward by Ezra Silk and Margaret Klein Salamon, founder and director of The Climate Mobilization.  Smith is an ecosocialist active in SCNCC.
 
Smith’s post raised big questions about the ecosocialist program, prompting a wide variety of responses from Forum members.
 
Mark from Poestenkill, NY, grants that the Victory Plan is “one of the more comprehensive plans I have seen so far for the transition to 100% renewables,” but finds it lacking in  its analysis of agriculture, Just Transition, economic democracy, and community/worker ownership. Mark points to New York’s “Green New Deal” as “more progressive.”
 
MReiss from Salt Spring Island, B.C., says “we need less energy going into plans,” calling Richard Smith’s outline “perfectly fine and all we need” but asks “the perennial questions: What is to be done?  It’s an urgent matter, not of plans, but of power.”
 
Henry Cason from Sumter, S.C., supports the need for “a highly coordinated and promoted vision that is practical, inspiring and fairly detailed as to an alternative way forward (another world is possible”. and argues that “only by the left collectively putting forth such a plan …will we have a chance of moving the masses forward.”  Cason concedes the existence of daunting obstacles, “especially the media,” but asks what alternatives we have.  “Violent revolution?  Not a chance!”
 
Larry Green, a psychotherapist, asks how people’s consciousness of what is possible can change, “freeing ourselves from the seemingly inevitable.”  Green explains how an aphorism from Choygum Trungpa--“You should be grateful whenever you’re disappointed or frustrated because it means that you’re getting news from reality”—points to how we can escape “implicit beliefs” that interfere with our ability to “identify the conditions that imprison us.”
 
Lawrence Boxall from Vancouver, B.C., offers a poem by left-feminist poet Marge Piercy “as a means of presenting the bigger picture than just this obsession with climate” because “we will never succeed until we restore the class consciousness that neoliberalism has so successfully destroyed.”
 
Sandra Lindberg from Decatur, IL, addresses the recognition that “it is difficult to organize a Victory-style mobilization when the enemy is … ourselves,” referring to the relatively privileged status of US Citizens within the grand scheme of things.  Sandra speaks of the necessity of a psychological sea change that depends, in part, on our fighting many small battles—“One tree at a time. One less airplane ride at a time. One less car in the driveway at a time.  One more mouthy local citizen at a time…. Take the first damn step.  We don’t fight for what we believe to be right because we know we will win.  We fight for what is right because it’s essential to do, regardless of the outcome.”
 
This wide-ranging conversation continues.  What is the role of a “Victory Plan” in building an ecosocialist movement?  What do you think of Richard Smith’s analysis and the diverse responses of other activists? 

Join the conversation here.
 


Activists, Artists and Academics: Building Just Climate Futures Together

Join the conference here.

There are five panels, with 20 speakers, covering:
  • The Global Climate Justice Movement in the Age of Crisis
  • Artivism
  • Creating a Field: Climate Justice Studies 
  • India: The F(r)iction of Nuclear as a Climate Solution: Tales from India’s Nuclear Renaissance 
We have talks by Pallav Das, Margaret Klein Salamon, Patrick Bond, Emily Williams, David Pellow, Michaela Ravasio, Kyle Powys White, anne-elise lewallen, Tom Athanasiou, Anya Grenier, Nathan Thanki, Kumar Sundaram, Daniel Fernandez, Ezra Silk, Brad Hornick, Richard Widick, Ashish Birulee, Kevin Buckland, John Foran, and Ken Hiltner that engage discussions on activism, artivism, and scholar-activism.
The talks present often intersecting themes since “This changes everything” means everything affects everything else, and part of the challenge is to figure out how, and to use that knowledge strategically, to change things in ways that ripple outward, long and slow, or sudden and flashingly…

One of our goals is to model and further improve the art of holding a conference with a nearly nonexistent carbon footprint. But beyond that, as you will see, we hope to build relationships and a knowledge-action network of scholars and activists for climate justice and radical social transformation in the face of humanity’s greatest threat.

Join the conference here.

 

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Recent Articles

City of Portland Votes to Defend Its Fossil Fuel Policy City Will Ask the State Court of Appeals to Overturn Land Use Ruling

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Marxism and the Earth: An Anti-critique

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Website Links

SCNCC is a joint Canadian and US coalition of ecosocialists and fellow travellers united in the belief that capitalism is driving climate change and that a radical international grassroots movement can stop it. Green capitalism is a dead end. So are liberal parties like the US Democrats and the corporate friendly approach of most Green NGOs. SCNCC believes the climate justice movement will unite with the labor movement and other struggles for liberation to create an alternative to the upside down world shaped by fossil fuels and corporate power. Another world is possible, but we need more ecosocialists to make it happen.

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