Wednesday, November 12, 2014

My Broken Heart

Republicons wining as much as they did in the 2014 midterms will make the president's life and those of us who support those things for which the Democratic Party stands miserable.  So what else is new?  Republicons vow to block the president no matter what he proposes.  The epic China/US treaty deal on climate change just forged by the president will be blocked by these obstructionist mendacious nincompoops. Who could have predicted that?
I feel now like I was hit by a truck.  Ending the Obama presidency with a Congress worse than any other obstructionist one since the Civil War is beyond my ability to comprehend and therefore successfully write anything in exegesis of it.  How does one explain the massive electoral myocardial infarction that happened one week ago and make sense of it?  How rational is it for a nation to usher into office the same Party that obstructed the President at every turn insulting him, shut the government down and refused to raise the debt ceiling?  The refusal to raise the debt ceiling alone would have sent this nation and the world into a gran mal economic seizure.  

The difference between the 2008, 2012 elections when the president was swept into office and the midterms of 2010 and 2014 when he was not on the ballot is that persons of color including Hispanics and the Democratic base sat the election out.  2/3rds who were registered to vote in 2014 did not do so.  It was the lowest voter turnout in decades.  Democrats win when voters vote.  The majority of the electorate is on the side of the 98% and not the side of the 1% millionaires and billionaires but if the 98% do not vote they are not counted.

Perhaps, they sat it out, too, because of unconstitutional Republicon Jim Crow-like tricks requiring certain difficult-to-obtain and costly IDs needed to vote or perhaps they sat it out because, clearly, we live in two different Americas -- a racist half and the other half.  Moreover, Obama cannot be elected anymore.  Or perhaps it was the fact that Democrats like Alison Lundergan Grimes, who gave that chinless McConnell beast a bit of a scare, thought it better to run away from the many successes of the president and simply not answer the question posed to her: "Did you vote for President Obama?"  She SHOULD have said a resounding YES and then screamed out the differences, the wide differences, between a Democrat and a Republicon of this era.  She should have stood tall and proud that she is a Democrat instead of denying it and not answering the obvious.

After the president's rise to the presidency I thought all that hard work, all the freedom rides, all the marches against segregation, all the voter registration and Supreme Court decisions paid off and that all the bombings of black churches, all the racist killings, all the segregation and all of the strange fruit hanging from the Poplar Trees were made right.  I thought the wrongs of a nation were addressed and in the process made the arc of the universe, indeed, bend toward justice and not away from it.  I am not so sure anymore that the arc of justice has not retreated and bent the other way. My heart is broken and I weep.  I hope someday in my lifetime I will see a land that does not deliver "a bad check marked insufficient funds" as MLK said it had.

Race has been the albatross around the necks of our national historical experience from its beginning.  The president to me looks sad, he looks lonely and he waxes baffled by a Republicon Party that should have been relegated to the ash bin of our history a long time ago.  But it has not been relegated to the ash bin of our history.  In fact, the racist Republican Party of Harpies is stronger than at any other post Civil War time in our history.

I used to love Malcolm X's response when he was asked "Are you violent?"  He said no, he was not violent and that he was nonviolent BUT he was NOT nonviolent against people who were violent to him.  I am not advocating violence but I always could understand why Malcolm X said what he did.

US, China strike groundbreaking agreement

My question to this hopeful story is how will the Republicons ruin it? Keep electing them and see what catastrophes they bring.  Bush II the failure wasn't enough for the nation killing hundreds of thousand including thousands of Americans for a trumped up phony war based on lies.  Keep it going, sit back and enjoy the view IF we get out alive. 

AP: Josh Leder

US, China strike groundbreaking agreement

-- A groundbreaking agreement struck by the United States and China is putting the world's two worst polluters on a faster track to curbing the heat-trapping gases blamed for global warming. With the clock ticking on a worldwide climate treaty, the two countries are seeking to put their troubled history as environmental adversaries behind them in hopes that other nations will be spurred to take equally aggressive action.

The U.S., a chief proponent of the prospective treaty, is setting an ambitious new goal to stop pumping as much carbon dioxide into the air. China, whose appetite for cheap energy has grown along with its burgeoning economy, agreed for the first time to a self-imposed deadline for when its emissions will top out.

The dual announcements from President Barack Obama and Chinese President Xi Jinping, unveiled Wednesday in Beijing, came as a shock to environmentalists who had pined for such action but suspected China's reluctance and Obama's weakened political standing might interfere. In Washington, Republicans were equally taken aback, accusing Obama of dumping an unrealistic obligation on the next president.

In fact, the deal had been hashed out behind the scenes for months. U.S. officials said U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry floated the idea during a visit to China in February, and Obama followed up by writing Xi in the spring to suggest that the world's two largest economies join forces.

Obama pressed the issue again during a meeting with China's vice premier on the sidelines of a U.N. climate summit in September, and the two countries finally sealed the deal late Tuesday - just in time to announce it in grand fashion at the Great Hall of the People as Obama's trip to China was coning to an end.

"This is a major milestone in the U.S.-China relationship," Obama said, with Xi at his side. "It shows what's possible when we work together on an urgent global challenge."
Under the agreement, Obama set a goal to cut U.S. emissions between 26 and 28 percent by 2025, compared with 2005 levels. Officials have said the U.S. is already on track to meet Obama's earlier goal to lower emissions 17 percent by 2020, and that the revised goal meant the U.S. would be cutting pollution roughly twice as fast during a five-year period starting in 2020.

China, whose emissions are growing as it builds new coal plants, set a target for its emissions to peak by about 2030 - earlier if possible - with the idea being that its emissions would then start falling. Although that goal still allows China to keep pumping more carbon dioxide for the next 16 years, it marked an unprecedented step for Beijing, which has been reluctant to be boxed in on climate by the global community.
"This is, in my view, the most important bilateral climate announcement ever," said David Sandalow, a former top environmental official at the White House and the Energy Department.

World leaders who have been pressing for a global climate treaty heralded the deal, with U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon urging all other nations to follow Obama's and Xi's lead by announcing their own emissions targets by early next year. Former Vice President Al Gore, a prominent environmentalist, called the Chinese move "a signal of groundbreaking progress from the world's largest polluter."

Scientists have pointed to the budding climate treaty, intended to be finalized next year in Paris, as a final opportunity to get emissions in check before the worst effects of climate change become unavoidable. The goal is for each nation to pledge to cut emissions by a specific amount, although negotiators are still haggling over whether those contributions should be binding.

Developing nations like India and China have long balked at being on the hook for climate change as much as wealthy nations like the U.S. that have been polluting for much longer. But China analysts said Beijing's willingness to cap its future emissions and to put Xi front and center signaled a significant turnaround.

Yet it wasn't clear how either the U.S. or China would meet their goals, nor whether China's growing emissions until 2030 would negate any reductions in the U.S. And in Washington, Republicans were sure to launch a renewed effort to block Obama's plans out of concern they could overly burden U.S. businesses and taxpayers.

"This unrealistic plan that the president would dump on his successor would ensure higher utility rates and far fewer jobs," said Sen. Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., who is set to become the majority leader early next year.

For Obama, the fight against climate change has become a central facet of the legacy he hopes to leave. Facing negligible prospects for major legislative victories during his final two years, he has sought to bypass Congress by using regulations on power plants and vehicles to cut emissions, and his aides say his audacity on those fronts has boosted his credibility on the issue when he meets with world leaders.

In China, the smog-laden skies over its cities have become a source of embarrassment that the government has sought to obscure. Ahead of the economic summit that brought Obama and other leaders to Beijing, authorities shut down factories, banned wood fires and kept half the cars off the road.