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As Milan Kundera’s insight reminds us, the struggle against power "is the struggle of memory against forgetting."

Submitted by Norm Roulet on Tue, 02/22/2011 - 00:51.

Bill Moyers: America Can't Deal With Reality -- We Must Be Exposed to the Truth, Even If It Hurts
Many people inhabit a closed belief system on whose door they have hung the "Do Not Disturb" sign. - February 14, 2011

History Makers is an organization of broadcasters and producers from around the world concerned with the challenges and opportunities faced by factual broadcasting. Bill Moyers was the keynote speaker at the 2011 convention on January 27, 2011, in New York City.

Thanks to all of you for your welcome - and for the chance to be here among so many kindred spirits. Your dedication to factual broadcasting, to our craft and calling; your passion for telling stories that matter; for connecting the present to the past, has created a community whose work is essential in this disquieting time when "what is happening today, this hour, this very minute, seems to be our sole criterion for judgment and action." It is a sad world that exists only in the present, unaware of the long procession that brought us here. As Milan Kundera’s insight reminds us, the struggle against power "is the struggle of memory against forgetting."

I talked about this gathering when I was in California this past weekend and spent time with a good friend and supporter of my own work on television, Paul Orfalea. He's the maverick entrepreneur who founded Kinko's in a former hamburger stand with one small rented Xerox copier and turned it into a business service empire with more than two billion dollars a year in revenue. After selling Kinko's, Paul became one of the most popular, if unorthodox, teachers of undergraduates at the University of California/ Santa Barbara. When I told him what I would be doing today he applauded and understood immediately the importance of what you do. He described to me how he teaches history "backwards" to college students who have learned little about the past in high school, don't know that the past is even alive, much less that it lives in them and question its value today. He hands his students a contemporary story from some daily news source, tells them to begin with the "now" of it and to then walk the trail back down the chronology to trace the personalities, circumstances and choices that made it today's news. Their assignment, in effect, is to begin at the entrance to the cave and rewind Ariadne's thread in the opposite direction, back to the deep origins of the story. In an era marked by the lack of continuity and community between the generations, this strikes me as an inspired way to stretch young imaginations across the time zones of human experience.

"Teaching Cleveland" Historical Revisionism and Negationism by Journalists and Amateurs has NO PLACE in Education Programming

Submitted by Norm Roulet on Mon, 02/21/2011 - 04:42.

I've been stunned to find there is a movement in Cleveland, much like "Creationism" and psycho-conservative mind-control programs of the Koch Tea Partiers, called "Teaching Cleveland", that proposes a group of journalists from the Cleveland Plain Dealer (mostly now out-of-the-profession) and other amateur-historians are qualified to develop education programming for our children.

From "Teaching Cleveland": "The Teaching Cleveland Foundation is a pending 501 (3) (c) organization with a stated mission to develop Cleveland-centered curricula in area schools that deepen an understanding of Greater Cleveland’s rich history, foster an appreciation of its varied resources, and equip participants with the skills and capacities to connect, collaborate, and commit.  The future of Greater Cleveland depends on inspiring enthusiasm and a stronger sense and love of place to grow another generation of civic leaders."

Wrong - the Future of Greater Cleveland depends on providing an authentic, safe, healthy, desirable place for people to live.... not brainwashing people to stay.

Change "Cleveland" to "Fatherland" and you will realize the definition and concept for "Teaching Cleveland" is stolen from your typical fascist handbook... and this type of make-believe "story-telling" is defined as "Historical Revisionism" or "Negationism".

1,000,000s of lives will be bettered in very few years - and I appreciated your help accomplishing this

Submitted by Norm Roulet on Sun, 02/20/2011 - 23:56.

 

MCCO near complete - next steps

Norm Roulet <norm [dot] roulet [at] gmail [dot] com>     Sun, Feb 20, 2011 at 12:40 PM
To: Chris Ronayne <Cronayne [at] universitycircle [dot] org>
Cc: hershel daniels <hersheldanielsjunior [at] gmail [dot] com>

Chris,

I'm pleased to see posted to the MCCO site that they are now committed to shutting down their coal boilers and will add no more. You should feel great satisfaction for this - 1,000,000s of lives will be bettered in very few years - and I appreciated your help accomplishing this.

Anyone using the Internet Must Know: Denier-bots live! Why are online comments’ sections over-run by the anti-science crowd

Submitted by Norm Roulet on Sun, 02/20/2011 - 21:20.

While I believe we do a good job of keeping spammers from contaminating realNEO, we do not have a way we verify the identity of users and so may be exposed to "sockpuppets". But members of realNEO attack and kill them upon discovery. On the other hand, a poorly managed online world like Cleveland.com is certainly fully occupied by such evil forces. Now you may know, for a fact, those "people" you are interacting with, when you discuss important issues to you, on these poorly managed portals like of your monopoly newspaper in Cleveland... or that silly little Facebook of yours... are aliens from another universe.

Denier-bots live! Why are online comments’ sections over-run by the anti-science, pro-pollution crowd?

Posted: 20 Feb 2011 06:38 AM PST

I’ve been reposting the ThinkProgress exposé on the head-exploding tactics of Chamber of Commerce hacks (henchmen?), like Aaron Barr who heads the private security firm HB Gary Federal (see “Chamber lobbyists solicited firm to investigate opponents’ families, children.”  Daily Kos has a stunning post on HB Gary’s tactics that I reprint in below, since it involves:

creating an army of sockpuppets, with sophisticated “persona management” software that allows a small team of only a few people to appear to be many, while keeping the personas from accidentally cross-contaminating each other.

Sierra Club says We all need to call Senator Brown today with a single message: SUPPORT CLEAN AIR ACT

Submitted by Norm Roulet on Sat, 02/19/2011 - 19:24.
PO Box 476 | Avon, OH 44011 US
 
Dear Fellow Ohio Sierra Club Members,

At the start of this year, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) finally began using its authority to regulate greenhouse gas emissions under the Clean Air Act. Already, however, powerful forces in Congress--including some Democrats--are working to strip that authority away or delay its long-overdue implementation. We need to make sure Ohio Senator Sherrod Brown stands firm in defense of EPA's authority to cut greenhouse gas pollution right away.

EPA authority to regulate greenhouse gases is the only tool we have right now at the national level to start combating climate change. Taking it away--or delaying it after all these years of inaction--is absolutely unacceptable.

We all need to call Senator Brown today with a single message:

DOE Requests $3.2 Billion for Renewable Energy, Efficiency in FY 2012 - Energy Secretary Steven Chu's budget summary

Submitted by Norm Roulet on Wed, 02/16/2011 - 19:20.

DOE Requests $3.2 Billion for Renewable Energy, Efficiency in FY 2012

Photo of President Obama at the State of the Union speech in 2011 with U.S. flag in the background.

President Obama called for more clean energy in his 2011 State of the Union Speech and continued his support in his new budget proposal.
Credit: White House Photo by Pete Souza

President Obama unveiled on February 14 a $29.5 billion budget request for DOE covering fiscal year (FY) 2012, including $3.2 billion for DOE's Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy (EERE). The budget request for EERE represents a 44% increase over the current FY 2010 appropriation of about $2.2 billion. The proposed budget aims to strengthen renewable energy sources, boost clean energy research, and cut expenses as the United States pursues the president's vision of generating 80% of its electricity from clean sources by 2035. Overall, the DOE budget would grow 12% over 2010 levels while cutting a number of programs and administrative costs. (FY 2010 numbers are used here for comparisons because Congress never passed an FY 2011 budget, and the federal government is running on a stopgap budget resolution reflecting 2010 levels).

Quarterly EPA Environmental Justice Community Outreach Call - February 17, 2011 at 3 p.m. ET

Submitted by Norm Roulet on Wed, 02/16/2011 - 17:57.
02/17/2011 - 15:00
02/17/2011 - 16:00
Etc/GMT-4

Environmental Justice leader/victim speaking to panel at First White House Forum on Environmental Justice

As I've reported on realNEO: "In what I consider the most important positive environmental development in America in the 21st Century, on December 15, 2010, EPA Administrator Lisa Jackson and White House Council on Environmental Quality Chair Nancy Sutley convened the First White House Environmental Justice Forum, where leadership of the recently-reconvened Federal Interagency Working Group on Environmental Justice (EJ IWG) met with over 100 environmental justice leaders (typically long-suffering EJ victims), in the South Court Auditorium of the Eisenhower Executive Office Building, at the White House complex, to develop new federal interagency strategies and interactions with citizens to right current EJ wrongs in America, in anticipation of worse to come as results of climate change."

The next step in furthering the EPA's Plan EJ 2014 is a Quarterly Environmental Justice Community Outreach Call, which will take place on February 17, 2011 at 3 p.m. (Eastern Time). The purpose of these calls is to provide information to participants about the Agency's EJ activities and maintain an open dialogue with EJ advocates. As EPA continues to advance Plan EJ 2014, the Agency hopes that these calls will better inform the public about EPA's EJ work and enhance opportunities to take advantage of federal activities. See call-in information below.

Location

Teleconference
1-(888)-273-3506 Access Code: 37178870#
United States

U.S. ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION AGENCY PLAN EJ 2014 - JULY 27, 2010 - Expanding the Conversation on Environmentalism

Submitted by Norm Roulet on Wed, 02/16/2011 - 17:28.

Whitehouse.gov screenshot of Lisa Jackson speaking at First White House Environmental Justice Forum

Whitehouse.gov screenshot of EPA Administrator Lisa Jackson speaking at First White House Environmental Justice Forum

Plan EJ 2014

Plan EJ 2014 is an overarching strategy intended to advance EPA Administrator Lisa P. Jackson’s priority to “expand the conversation on environmentalism and work for environmental justice.” Plan EJ 2014, named in recognition of the 20th anniversary of President Clinton’s issuance of Executive Order 12898, Federal Actions to Address Environmental Justice in Minority Populations and Low-Income Populations PDF (6 pp, 122K, about PDF), is a roadmap to help us integrate environmental justice into all of our programs.

The goals of the plan are to:

  • Protect health in communities over-burdened by pollution
  • Empower communities to take action to improve their health and environment
  • Establish partnerships with local, state, tribal and federal organizations to achieve healthy and sustainable communities.

Over the next four years, we will implement the plan and work to strengthen our efforts to carry out the Administrator’s priority through continuous and meaningful engagement with communities and all stakeholders.

Does Egypt hold any lessons for climate hawks — for "a generation that uses their own creativity and talent and technology"?

Submitted by Norm Roulet on Sat, 02/12/2011 - 14:27.

February 12, 2011

And above all, we saw a new generation emerge — a generation that uses their own creativity and talent and technology to call for a government that represented their hopes and not their fears, a government that is responsive to their boundless aspirations.

… it was the moral force of non-violence….

That’s Obama speaking Friday.  I’ve been asked by a couple of ClimateProgress regulars if there are any lessons for climate hawks in the incredible Egyptian revolution.

For instance, the 25-year-old Ian of “What should Ian do with his life?” fame asks

I’m just wondering if you think it would be worth discussing Egypt in the thread this weekend. I could be very wrong but it seems like it might give people hope to change things here in the states. Maybe its possible to focus some of that energy into grassroots efforts on climate change. Huge, sustained, passionate rallies seem like they work now. Is that possible in regards to action on climate change?

real Al Jazeera - Watch Al Jazeera's live reporting on the situation in Egypt on realNEO below

Submitted by Norm Roulet on Thu, 02/10/2011 - 18:40.

Watch Al Jazeera's live reporting on the situation in Egypt below - video not optimized for mobile devices (audio may be in slo-mo):

 

 

Something to Cheer-Up Clevelanders, in the Middle of February - “The term ‘100-year event’ really lost its meaning this year.”

Submitted by Norm Roulet on Thu, 02/10/2011 - 12:09.


15 Day Extended Weather Forecast for Cleveland, Ohio - February 10-24, 2011

Following the warmest year in the recorded history of mankind on our planet, Earthlings should certainly expect more of the same... meaning after suffering through brutal Winter storms caused by intense climate change in the Arctic, we shall experience unseasonably warm weather for much of the month of February.

What may July have in store... when we must grow the crops that must feed and fuel the world?!?!

Some food for thought, from Climate Progress, for those balmy Cleveland February evenings to come...

UN food agency warns severe drought threatens wheat crop in China, world’s largest producer it is - FAO also warns floods and heavy rains in Southern Afria "threaten food security"

Posted: 09 Feb 2011 09:45 AM PST

The U.N. Food and Agriculture Organization issued an alert Tuesday that a severe drought was threatening the wheat crop in China, the world’s largest wheat producer, and was even resulting in shortages of drinking water for people and livestock.

The state-run news media in China warned Monday that the country’s major agricultural regions were facing their worst drought in 60 years and said Tuesday that Shandong Province, a cornerstone of Chinese grain production, was bracing for its worst drought in 200 years unless substantial precipitation came by the end of this month.

World wheat prices are already surging and have been widely cited as one reason for protests in Egypt and elsewhere in the Arab world.

Request from EPA for public comment on a CONCEPT PAPER FOR AN ENVIRONMENTAL JUSTICE COMMUNITY LEARNING CENTER - perfect for NEO

Submitted by Norm Roulet on Thu, 02/10/2011 - 11:34.


Environmental Justice Community Representative speaking at First White House Environmental Justice Forum

Please find below a fascinating request from the U.S. ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION AGENCY (EPA) OFFICE OF AIR AND RADIATION (OAR) for public comment on a CONCEPT PAPER FOR AN ENVIRONMENTAL JUSTICE COMMUNITY LEARNING CENTER. The OAR is taking the lead in developing a learning center or institute for environmental justice community members to increase community awareness and understanding of environmental risks stemming from pollution and related environmental justice concerns. This effort will build communities’ capacity to participate in the protection of their air, water, and land resources. This represents Expanding the Conversation on Environmentalism and Working for Environmental Justice that EPA Administrator Lisa Jackson has made one of EPA’s key priorities under her leadership.

Regarding the challenge being addressed... from Administrator Jackson, in releasing this concept paper for public input:

Many minority, low-income, and indigenous people have been historically underrepresented in environmental decision making, while at times experiencing higher levels of environmental pollution and other social and economic burdens that result in poorer health outcomes. Many members of these communities have not been able to participate effectively in environmental decision making in part because they lack the background and information they need for meaningful participation. As a result, EPA does not always benefit from important community input.

It is my strong belief Administrator Jackson's statement perfectly describes Northeast Ohio - these are the words that should have been said by Cleveland's Mayor Jackson, as citizen and community leader... for decades! These are the words citizens of Northeast Ohio must hear from our leaders for the future.

EPA Seeks Applicants for $1.2 Million in Environmental Justice Grants - Must Acknowledge Environmental Injustice to Apply

Submitted by Norm Roulet on Fri, 01/28/2011 - 16:58.

The EPA Environmental Justice grants announced below would fit nicely with lead poisoning eradication needs and objectives in Northeast Ohio, as funded by HUD. The Federal Government wants to attack environmental injustice at the core, through collaboration among Federal agencies, like HUD and EPA, with environmental justice organizations in local communities, like in the overly-lead-burdened Cleveland, so proposals to build EPA environmental justice programming to leverage impact of HUD Lead Eradication funding would make sense and likely appeal to grant review committees. Unfortunately, a community must recognize it is victim of ENVIRONMENTAL INJUSTICE to apply for this grant money, and Cleveland has not yet made that recognition. We're the Green City by the Blue Lake.

Let's see if any local Environmental Justice organizations (are there any?) apply for and receive funding from this Federal EPA program for environmental justice, developing programs addressing lead poisoning here, in leverage of the $4.5 million just provided by HUD for lead poisoning eradication, as Obama has determined is a priority here. Let's see if anyone admits we have any environmental injustice here and applies at all.

From the EPA:

Environmental Justice Mailing List

EPA Seeks Applicants for $1.2 Million in Environmental Justice Grants to Address Local Health and Environmental Issues

WASHINGTON – The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is accepting grant applications for $1.2 million in funding to support projects designed to research, educate, empower and enable communities to understand and address local health and environmental issues. Eligible applicants from non-profit, faith-based and tribal organizations working in the community of the proposed project are encouraged to apply.

2011 realNEO Annual Report - Who really reads it anymore? Update on site statistics

Submitted by Norm Roulet on Thu, 01/27/2011 - 05:40.


Google Analytics of weekly realNEO visits and pageviews from December 01, 2008 to January 26, 2011

As I've reported over the past year, while sharing realNEO site statistics with members - most recently, in November, marking our 7th year - realNEO traffic demonstrates very consistent month-to-month and year-to-year growth for visitors, visits and pages viewed. Where there are dips, like each Christmas holiday season, there is year-to-year growth - we've always had strong, consistent, steady performance as illustrated above, since December 2008 (the first month we had reliable Google analytics).

Can realNEO be improved, or even saved? (you do not have to log in to vote)

Submitted by westward on Wed, 01/26/2011 - 15:06.

Welcome to BP’s Energy Outlook 2030 - "it is a wake-up call, not something any of us would like to see happening"

Submitted by Norm Roulet on Sat, 01/22/2011 - 15:48.

On the January 27, 2011 YouTube Ask The President moderated broadcast, Obama was asked who was his favorite person in math and science. Obama said one of the things he loves about being President is "having access to math and science" and the White House is committed to using technology well. "Serious brainpower out there."

He highlighted his PCAST team and its Director Eric Lander - says he helps make complex science understandable. From MIT - "President-elect Barack Obama on Friday named Eric Lander, the founding director of the Broad Institute, a co-chair of the President's Council of Advisors on Science and Technology (PCAST), a group that assists the president in making science and technology policy decisions".

BP Energy Outlook 2030 - London, January 2011

Welcome to BP’s Energy Outlook 2030.

The outlook for global energy is not just a matter for energy companies: it’s an issue for all of us. Around the world, there is a lively and important conversation taking place on the choices that face us all – as consumers, producers, investors and policy-makers. By sharing this Energy Outlook, we hope to contribute to that discussion.

Our starting point in contributing to this debate has been BP’s work on the Statistical Review of World Energy, which this year celebrates its 60th anniversary. The Statistical Review, which documents trends in the production and use of energy, started out as an internal BP document and was made public for the first time in 1956.

In a similar way, the Energy Outlook, which contains our projections of future energy trends, has been used only internally so far. However, we feel it is part of our responsibility as a company to make important information and analysis available for public debate – all the more so if the issue at hand is as vital to all of us as is energy, its relation to economic development on one side, and to climate change on the other.

In this outlook we seek to identify long term energy trends, and then add our views on the evolution of the world economy, of policy, and technology, to develop a projection for world energy markets to 2030. It is a projection, not a proposition, and this is an important distinction.

You will see, for example, that our outlook expects global CO2 emissions to continue  rising, along with import dependence in many key consuming regions. This does not mean BP downplays the importance of climate change or the role of energy security in international relations. Rather, it reflects a ‘to the best of our knowledge’ assessment of the world’s likely path from today’s vantage point. To me personally, it is a wake-up call, not something any of us would like to see happening.

Offshore development works better?

Submitted by scott.allerdice on Wed, 01/12/2011 - 03:03.

Offshore Development is the happening thing being witnessed. The trend has fast emerged and is growing at an even faster pace. But what is it that is making this shift so popular?

Top Environmental Development of 2010: EPA Expanding the Conversation on Environmentalism and Working for Environmental Justice

Submitted by Norm Roulet on Thu, 01/06/2011 - 15:20.

Environmental Justice leader/victim speaking to panel at First White House Environmental Forum
Environmental Justice leader/victim Barbara Miller speaking to panel at First White House Forum on Environmental Justice

In what I consider the most important positive environmental development in America in the 21st Century, on December 15, 2010, EPA Administrator Lisa Jackson and White House Council on Environmental Quality Chair Nancy Sutley convened the First White House Environmental Justice Forum, where leadership of the recently-reconvened Federal Interagency Working Group on Environmental Justice (EJ IWG) met with over 100 environmental justice leaders (typically long-suffering EJ victims), in the South Court Auditorium of the Eisenhower Executive Office Building, at the White House complex, to develop new federal interagency strategies and interactions with citizens to right current EJ wrongs in America, in anticipation of worse to come as results of climate change.

This Forum was the public interface, and culmination of a year of expansive activity in the White House, throughout the Obama Administration, and nationwide, to advance EPA Administrator Lisa P. Jackson’s priority to “expand the conversation on environmentalism and work for environmental justice” in America, in clear recognition of harm caused disadvantaged citizens by current Environmental Injustice (aka Environmental Racism... Environmental Genocide... from the mouths of victims), and showing clear US government concern over "Climate Gaps" (e.g. in Heat Islands), and over those worsening, causing more environmental injustices, to be exacerbated by future Climate Change and resulting Climate Injustices that will harm life on Earth, in this age of human-caused global warming.

2010 "Environment Top 10 Lists" Conclude: "stunning year in climate science reveals that human civilization is on the precipice"

Submitted by Norm Roulet on Mon, 01/03/2011 - 09:22.

I have compiled a summary outline list of 15 "Top 10ish Environmental lists of 2010" found on the Internet - these are drawn from diverse, largely US-oriented environmental media services and organizations - many focus on organizational objectives - most feature positive and negative developments. I have summarized all but the last list - A stunning year in climate science reveals that human civilization is on the precipice - by Joe Romm, as that should be read in its' entirely, including linked reference material.

Romm points out: "The last year or so has seen more scientific papers and presentations that raise the genuine prospect of catastrophe (if we stay on our current emissions path) that I can recall seeing in any other year." "Any one of these would be cause for action — and combined they vindicate the final sentence of Elizabeth Kolbert’s  Field Notes from a Catastrophe:  “It may seem impossible to imagine that a technologically advanced society could choose, in essence, to destroy itself, but that is what we are now in the process of doing.

Romm concludes: "Unrestricted emissions of greenhouse gases threaten multiple catastrophes, any one of which justifies action.  Together, they represent the gravest threat to humanity imaginable.  The fact that the overwhelming majority of the mainstream media ignored the overwhelming majority of these studies and devoted a large fraction of its climate ‘ink’ in the last 12 months to what was essentially a non-story (Climategate) is arguably the single greatest failing of the science media this year."

10,000s of cannabis entrepreneurs and stakeholders, nurturing $ billions in new GREEN, taxable economic opportunity for America

Submitted by Norm Roulet on Mon, 12/27/2010 - 01:36.

Fisheye view of KushCon2 Marijuana Industry Convention in Denver, Colorado, December 17-19, 2010
Fisheye view of KushCon2 Marijuana Industry Convention in Denver, Colorado, December 17-19, 2010

December 17 - 19, 2010, the Colorado Convention Center hosted the world's largest marijuana lifestyles convention TO-DATE - KushCon2 - offering those active in the legal global marijuana industries a place to meet, collaborate, learn and grow their new-economy enterprises, together. In one convention hall, in one weekend, mingled 10,000s of cannabis entrepreneurs and their stakeholders - nurturing $ billions in new GREEN, taxable economic opportunity for America - and their truly Green Revolution is just taking off.

Meet America's Greenest Revolutionaries ever... Mom and Pop Mainstreet, Small Town, Middle America!

Welcome to realNEO Washington Bureau - Backstage at the White House

Submitted by Norm Roulet on Fri, 12/17/2010 - 05:51.

White House viewed from the entrance to the Media Briefing room and press facilities
Entrance to Press Briefing Room and media facilities at the White House (seen in the distance)

On December 15, 2010, Obama administration officials convened the first-ever White House Forum on Environmental Justice, and I felt it was important to attend. As an environmental injustice victim, and activist for environmental justice, I wanted my voice to be heard... and as a media representative of real NEO, where the mainstream media does not cover environmental injustice, I wanted to listen, learn, and help other citizens here and worldwide understand what is being planned in Washington to combat environmental injustice in Cleveland, America, and globally.

While I was covering what was happening inside the White House, I thought I'd share a few snapshots of the backstage workings of the "White House" itself, which is certainly one of the best known and most important places in world history... and a spectacular architectural masterpiece.