Read the full article →
By Doug Porter
Local gasoline prices have increased by roughly 20% over the past few weeks. Retailers dependent on imported goods are voicing concerns about bottlenecks in supplies coming through west coast ports. And that could be bad news for consumers. There’s more to the story than what you’ve likely seen or heard.
While the factors surrounding both these development are complex, a major element in each are labor unions seeking safe working conditions. In what amounts to a sad commentary on the state of the news media in the U.S. the coverage has been largely one dimensional, leading with management’s pronouncements about wages and benefits.
Right now the issues being put before the public are rising fuel costs and the possibility the next new gadget may be in short supply. What’s missing is the realization that the health and safety issues are at the core of these economic disruptions. Today I’ll try to round out the picture of what’s really happening here.
Read the full article →
“Let’s be clear, climate change is the most important issue facing all of us for the rest of our lives.” –John Harrity, President of the Connecticut State Council of Machinists
By Jim Miller & Micah Mitrosky
We are facing a historic environmental crisis that threatens our present and future survival. Think Progress pithily summarized the conclusions of last year’s United Nations Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, noting that:
The world’s top scientists and governments have issued their bluntest plea yet to the world: Slash carbon pollution now (at a very low cost) or risk “severe, pervasive and irreversible impacts for people and ecosystems.” Scientists have “high confidence” these devastating impacts occur “even with adaptation” — if we keep doing little or nothing.
A short list of the many catastrophic effects that unchecked climate change may bring includes severe drought, dangerous wildfires, increased disease, threatened food systems due to Dust Bowl-like conditions, ocean acidification, more global conflict over resources, economic collapse, and mass extinction.
In short, the overwhelming majority of serious scientists as well as governmental agencies such as NASA and even the U.S. Defense Department are warning of a grim future if we fail to address this issue.