Koch And Native-American Reservation Oil Theft

This post originally appeared at Campaign for America’s Future (CAF) at their Blog for OurFuture. I am a Fellow with CAF.

Just what is this Koch Industries? Should it be called a “company?” If so we need to re-think the idea of what a company and a business is supposed to be. Even the brother of Koch Industries owners David and Charles Koch called the company an “organized crime” operation.

Koch money is a key driver of the conservative movement. Almost every conservative-movement rock you turn over has Koch money crawling around under it. As the movement becomes more and more of a pay-to-play operation, conservatives of every stripe do more and more to protect and enrich the Koch operation. This has included blocking, disrupting and avoiding official investigations of accusations. It also includes funding front groups to advance the political and financial interests of the company and its owners.

Theft Of Oil From Reservations

Oppose The Future has the story of how Koch Oil was caught stealing oil from an Indian Reservation, reducing or removing the incomes of so many poor residents.

At some point in 1987, Thurmon Parton’s royalty checks for the three oil wells he inherited from his mother suddenly dropped from $3,000 a month to a little over $1,000. He and his sister, Arnita Gonzalez, members of the Caddo tribe, lived near Gracemont, Oklahoma, a town of a few hundred people on a small grid on the prairie.
Those modest royalties were the only source of income each of them had.

. . . What happened to Mr. Parton, Ms. Gonzales and Ms. Limpy had nothing to do with the wells or how they were producing. Their oil was being stolen. And all of the evidence pointed to the same culprit: Koch Oil, a division of Koch Industries.

This is an important story today because it helps us understand the nature of the Koch operation, which has so much influence over our politics and even livelihoods today. It also helps us understand why our government not only appears to be influenced, but often to be outright corrupted. From the story,

In the spring of 1989, a Special Committee on Investigations of the United States Senate’s Select Committee on Indian Affairs was formed to look into concerns that the path to tribal self-rule was impeded by fraud, corruption and mismanagement from all sides.

… Within a span of months, the Special Committee determined that “Koch [Oil] was engaged in systematic theft, stealing millions in Oklahoma alone.” BLM, even with a tip that Koch was behaving improperly, hadn’t done a thing.

Oppose The Future lays out the story and details of the oil theft. There is also story of the years following.

“A Broad Pattern Of Criminal Behavior”

Back in 1996 Business Week looked into the relationship between then-Senator and Presidential Candidate Bob Dole and Koch Industries and an apparent pattern of influence by the company, in BOB DOLE’S OIL-PATCH PALS. Here are some excerpts from their investigation, [emphasis added]

Koch has had a history of run-ins with the Justice Dept. and other federal agencies. In 1989, a special congressional committee looked into charges that Koch had routinely removed more oil from storage tanks on Indian tribal lands … Dole tried to influence the Senate committee to soft-pedal the probe. Nevertheless, after a yearlong investigation, the committee said in its final report, “Koch Oil, the largest purchaser of Indian oil in the country, is the most dramatic example of an oil company stealing by deliberate mismeasurement and fraudulent reporting.” The report triggered a grand jury probe. The inquiry was dropped in March, 1992, which provoked outrage by congressional investigators.

Then in April, 1995, the Justice Dept. filed a $55 million civil suit against Koch for causing more than 300 oil spills over a five-year period. Dole and other Senators, however, sponsored a bill … that critics charge would help Koch defend itself … legal sources say the government’s ultimate goal is to use evidence in the two actions to establish that Koch has engaged in a broad pattern of criminal behavior.

… From Apr. 19, 1991, through Nov. 2, 1992, David Koch and the Koch Industries political action committee together contributed $7,000 to Nickles’ campaign war chest. Around the same time, [Oklahoma Republican Senator Don] Nickles sponsored Timothy D. Leonard, an old friend of Nickles, for the post of U.S. Attorney in Oklahoma City. … initially, questions were raised in the U.S. attorney’s office about whether Leonard should recuse himself because Koch Industries purchased oil from wells in which Leonard and his family had royalty interests … Then-Deputy Attorney General William P. Barr granted him a waiver to participate in the case … In March, 1992, after an 18-month investigation, the U.S. Attorney’s office terminated the grand jury probe and informed Koch it anticipated no indictments. … As the grand jury investigation was winding down, Nickles sponsored Leonard for a federal judgeship. He was nominated by President Bush in November, 1991, and confirmed by the Senate the following August.

Business Week lays out the evidence in detail. The timing, with Republican administration/committee/agency/department after administration/committee/agency/department impeding and/or dropping investigations into Koch activities is also clear.

In 2000, CBS’ 60 Minutes ran a segment, Blood And Oil And Environmental Negligence looking at the activities of the Koch brothers and their private company Koch Industries,

As we told you when we first reported this story last November, the Koch family of Wichita, Kansas is among the richest in the United States, worth billions of dollars. Their oil company, Koch Industries, is bigger than Intel, Dupont or Prudential Insurance, and they own it lock stock and barrel.

William Koch, brother of company owners David and Charles, called the company an “organized crime” operation:

Koch says that Koch Industries engaged in “(o)rganized crime. And management driven from the top down.”
“It was – was my family company. I was out of it,” he says. “But that’s what appalled me so much… I did not want my family, my legacy, my father’s legacy to be based upon organized crime.”

In March, 2001 the incoming Bush administration repealed the “responsible contractor rule” that barred companies that chronically defraud the government and/or violate federal pollution, wage and other rules from receiving federal contracts.

Then, in 2002 the Bush II administration awarded Koch the contract to supply oil to the Strategic Petroleum Reserve. (There were accusations that the government bought oil when prices were high, and sold it when prices were low.) The contract was renewed in 2004. Koch received tens of millions in other government contracts during the Bush years.
The story and timeline of the Koch operation (and its front-groups) go on and on, organizing and funding climate-denial front groups, front-groups run and funded by the Koch Brothers organizing and funding the Tea Party. (Please click the links.)
Think Progress in particular has been following the activities of this “company” and its front groups, and it is certainly worth taking a look. See REPORT: How Koch Industries Makes Billions By Demanding Bailouts And Taxpayer Subsidies (Part 1),

Koch funds both socially conservative groups and socially liberal groups. However, Koch’s financing of front groups and political organizations all have one thing in common: every single Koch group attacks workers’ rights, promotes deregulation, and argues for radical supply side economics.

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m4s0n501

Fed Now Paying Bank Dividends

The Fed is now handing cash to wealthy people who own bank stocks. They have authorized banks to pay dividends, while giving banks money at zero percent for them to loan back to the US govt at higher rates. That is free money. If you have money in the bank, you are paying for that by receiving almost no interest.
See If Banks Can Resume Dividends, Can the Fed Resume Normalized Rates? | The Big Picture

Cutting Government Creates Jobs Like Cutting Taxes Increases Revenue

This post originally appeared at Campaign for America’s Future (CAF) at their Blog for OurFuture. I am a Fellow with CAF.
A “report” from Republican staff of the Joint Economic Committee says that the path to job creation is cutting … the very things that create jobs. This is like saying that cutting taxes increases revenue. We know how that worked out, and the job-consequences of budget cuts are going to be just as disastrous.
Sometimes you can cut through ideology by looking at what actually happens in the real world. Reagan cut taxes: huge deficits resulted. Clinton raised taxes, the deficits went away. Bush cut taxes, we went back to huge deficits. And you can see the same thing when you look at government spending and jobs. England and Greece are trying austerity, and their economies are sinking as a result. In 1937 the United States learned this lesson, succumbing to deficit cutting which choked off the recovery from the depression. On the other hand, the “stimulus” boosted the economy, held off a depression and created millions of jobs — but not enough jobs to overcome the Bush years. Here is the chart — note the obvious effect of the stimulus and of the end of the stimulus on the jobs picture:

chart_jobs2

Cut Cut Cut To Grow Grow Grow?
Republicans say that cut cut cut leads to grow grow grow. Their prescription is to cut taxes to “reduce uncertainty” which they say will result in job creation. Never mind that Clinton raised taxes and then the economy boomed. Then Bush cut taxes and then gave us the worst job-creation record in decades, even before the recession started! From The Hill, GOP study backs ‘cut and grow’ but says new jobs could take time,

House Republican leaders on Tuesday released a study that they said shows their “cut and grow” strategy will boost the economy.

The study argues that reducing uncertainty about future taxes will increase household spending and business investment, spurring growth and hiring.
House Majority Leader Eric Cantor (R-Va.) said the report shows “less government spending means more private sector jobs.”

Just how will “certainty” about tax cuts create jobs?

The study argues that “non-Keynesian effects” result from government budget cuts. It says households expecting future taxes to pay for government spending will purchase more homes and durable consumer goods once uncertainty about future taxes is erased.

Right, knowing that taxes will be lower, people will go out an “purchase more homes.” The people funding the Republicans will just go buy an 8th house with their tax savings. And maybe a Maybach or two. Plutonomy in action!
No Path To Jobs
Laying off teachers and firefighters is not the path to jobs. Cutting government cuts the very things that nurture the soil in which business can thrive. We need a modern infrastructure to compete in world markets, but they are cutting back on infrastructure spending. We need a well-educated population to grow the economy, but they are cutting back on education.
Cutting is clearly not the path to more people having better-paying jobs: Congress takes aim at jobs program,

Becky Thompson of Sioux Falls turns 72 next month, and she is quietly grateful that she has a job working in the computer lab at Experience Works, an agency that helps older workers find employment.
. . . But now she and other older workers are worried that all this – the training, the support, the camaraderie – will disappear in the next round of budget cuts.
That’s because more than 60 percent of Experience Works’ budget comes from the Senior Community Service Employment Program, the only federally funded job training program for low-income seniors – and one of many programs targeted for reduction in the Republican spending bill that passed the House last month.

Economists, Analysts, Everyone Says Budget Cuts Will Kill Growth
Isaiah Poole summed it up in, More Than 300 Economists Repudiate Right-Wing “So Be It” Economics,

Today the Economic Policy Institute and the Center for American Progress jointly released a statement signed by nearly 320 economists from around the country, including Nobel Prize winners Kenneth Arrow and Eric Maskin, former Vice Chairman of the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System Alan Blinder, and former Chair of the President’s Council of Economic Advisers and Director of the National Economic Council Laura Tyson.
That comes a day after Mark Zandi of Moody’s Analytics released a report that estimated the House budget cuts would result in a loss of 700,000 jobs by 2012. That finding evoked a “so what?” from House Majority Leader Eric Cantor that was remarkably in line with the dismissive “so be it” comment that House Speaker John Boehner made earlier in February in response to concerns that budget cuts would result in job losses.

If people had good jobs that paid well the deficit would be a heck of a lot lower than it is. People would be paying taxes instead of collecting unemployment. Cutting the things that create jobs is certainly not a path to creating jobs. England is learning this, our Congress is not.
No Job Creation Programs At All
Republicans have held the Congress for months but have not introduced a single job-creation program. In GOP Bait And Switch On Jobs, Anne Thompson lays it out,
,

The House Republicans have developed a track record of bait and switch when it comes to their approach to job creation.
Last week, House Republican leadership released a PowerPoint by Congressman Paul Ryan that they are using to educate the Republican Caucus on their top policy priorities. Ryan laid out the “Jobs Deficit” as the number one challenge facing America in his very first slide. Yet he failed to focus on jobs until the very last slide, which reads: “Keep taxes low; spur job creation and growth.” Not quite the robust plan we need to put millions of Americans back to work.

Is There At Least A Secret Plan?
Is appears — and this kook “study” confirms — there is no real plan for jobs. But is there at least a secret plan in operation?
Secret plan? When they said that cutting taxes increases revenue they knew it wouldn’t — they had a hidden agenda. They knew better than to actually believe that cutting taxes would actually increase revenue to fund the government. They said so. The resulting deficits were the agenda. The plan was to “cut their allowance” and “starve the beastto create a debt crisis, then demand that government cut back the things it does to protect and empower We, the People.
What is the agenda behind this job-destruction agenda? If there is a secret agenda behind destroying so many American jobs — and the ability to create new jobs that pay well — then what is it? They can’t be crazy enough to destroy the economy just to increase their 2012 electoral odds, can they? On the other hand, no one has ever finished the sentence, “Republicans aren’t crazy enough to …” without being proven wrong.
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So Are These “Reviews” Just Paid Astroturf?

I’m thinking of seeing the movie Battle: Los Angeles. Just for the heck of it I looked at the “Fan Ratings” at Fandango. Here is a sampling:

This is a totally awesome movie that kept me in the edge of my seat the whole time. Great special effects and great sounds. Definitely the kind of movie to see on the big screen. Well worth the money !!!!

This movie is stunning and will have you gasping for breath then deliver a great and pulse pounding ending!! People who say this movie is cliche are just looking for a reason to not like it. Go see this movie then go see it again because I promise you will want to!! Retreat hell!!

This movie was intense from the start and it kept you going through to the end. It is like a more realistic and better-made Starship troopers. Acting was good and believable. Definitely recommend and I will see again and I will own this.

Wow…Now it’s been a long time since I said that when it comes to a movie. Or anything really. But I’ll say it again. Wow! Battle: Los Angeles looked fantastic from it’s electrifying TV spots and Trailers but who knew it would actually live up to the intensity I hoped for. And it does and it’s so much than I could have hoped for. The film is simplistic in concept we get invaded this is the story of the marine platoon who discovers a weakness in the deadly E.T. force turning the war back into our favor. … But when the action starts it doesn’t stop and it is intense. … The movie is great!

You get the picture. Obviously paid. I’m getting so tired of this. I used to look at the “customer reviews” for things at places like Best Buy and other online purchase sites. No more, because they are obviously filled with paid placements from the manufacturers, or in this case from the movie companies.
Just another corporate scam…
P.S. I went to watch a movie trailer there, and had to sit through an ad before the trailer started. But the trailer is an ad itself! They make me watch an ad before I can watch the ad I wanted to see. Sheesh. Who thinks this stuff up?

What “Free Trade” Has Cost The World

This post originally appeared at Campaign for America’s Future (CAF) at their Blog for OurFuture. I am a Fellow with CAF.
If you take a job away from someone who is paid a reasonable wage because they enjoy the protections and prosperity of democratic government, move it across a border, and give it to someone living under a thugocracy, forced to work for pennies with no protections whatsoever, it should be just plain obvious that the worker on our side of the border and the worker on the other side of the border are not going to be better off. And when you do this on a massive scale it just stands to reason that most people on both sides of the border are going to be worse off.
But propaganda being what it is we were somehow convinced to try a worldwide experiment in taking good jobs from democracies and turning them into bad jobs in thugocracies. Now, of course, the experiment has run its course and we can see the results.
Worker Against Worker
Setting worker against worker enabled a few people to get really, really really wealthy and powerful and use that wealth to become even more wealthy and powerful. Our country is in decline, burdened by massive trade deficits because the ones with vested interests in cheap labor won’t let us won’t take on the mercantilists, burdened by budget deficits because those vested interests have bought low taxes and government subsidies, our infrastructure crumbles because multinational business leaders refuse to invest here, with no more need of us as workers, and the resulting hollowed-out middle class can’t consume anymore. Other countries also suffer from similar stresses.
Out of this situation a new global elite has emerged, contemptuous of democracy and government and any power but the power of their own money. In country after country, these top few won’t share the proceeds with their own, either, while they keep the world from approaching solutions.
In January’s post, Establishment Realizing: When You Close The Factory We Can’t Make A Living, I wrote about how “the establishment,” or as bloggers call it, “The Village” or “Versailles,” are starting to realize that our trade policies just might not be working for us. Of course, they come to this realization only after our trade deficits approach the trillion mark, after we have lost millions of manufacturing jobs, after we have closed tens of thousands of factories, after we have lost the tech manufacturing industry, and after we have abandoned hopes of leading in green manufacturing as well…
(We’re still waiting for them to realize that tax cuts do not increase revenue, that spending more on military than all other countries combined might contribute to deficits, that our too-big-to-fail financial sector is capable of causing problems, that the climate really is changing, that allowing corporations to pump money into politics means the end of democracy… but hey, a dollar spent by a vested interest on a politician apparently is a dollar very, very well spent.)
In the Washington Post, Steven Pearlstein recently reviewed Dani Rodrik’s “The Globalization Paradox,”

It is dogma among economists and right-thinking members of the political and business elite that globalization is good and more of it is even better. That is why they invariably view anyone who dissents from this orthodoxy as either ignorant of the logic of comparative advantage or selfishly protectionist.
But what if it turns out that globalization is more of a boon to the members of the global elite than it is to the average Jose?

Right, what if?

In “The Globalization Paradox,” Dani Rodrik demonstrates that those questions are more than hypothetical — that they describe the world as it really is rather than as it exists in economic theory or in the imagination of free trade fundamentalists.
. . . The starting point of Rodrik’s argument is that open markets succeed only when embedded within social, legal and political institutions that provide them legitimacy by ensuring that the benefits of capitalism are broadly shared.

And a unicorn. And a rainbow.

The paradox, as Rodrik sees it, is that globalization will work for everyone only if all countries abide by the same set of rules, hammered out and enforced by some form of technocratic global government. The reality is, however, that most countries are unwilling to give up their sovereignty, their distinctive institutions and their freedom to manage their economies in their own best interests. Not China. Not India. Not the members of the European Union, as they are now discovering. Not even the United States.
In the real world, argues Rodrik, there is a fundamental incompatibility between hyper-globalization on the one hand, and democracy and national sovereignty on the other.

Clyde Prestowitz threw a one-two punch at free trade after Senator John McCain claimed that the iPhone and iPad are Made in America. In Why isn’t the iPhone made in America? at Foreign Policy magazine, Prestowitz wrote,

John McCain provided some good laughs and made himself look stupid on a recent ABC news interview by telling Diane Sawyer that the iPhone and iPad are great examples of products that are made in America.
They’re not. And given the amount of high technology production in his state, McCain should certainly have known better. The fact that he didn’t does make you wonder about what, if anything, they know in the U.S. Senate.

Prestowitz goes on to explain that while the iPhone is manufactured in China, parts, software, design and other components are made all around the world, not necessarily for low wages. He concludes,

So if America actually did produce the stuff it says it is good at producing, it wouldn’t have a trade deficit with Asia for which China is the proxy at all. It would have a trade surplus and 20-40,000 more jobs than it has.

Prestowitz looks at a smaller picture here of the back-and-forth of trade with the US and China. Design, software and other capital and technology intensive components are not made in China. But the bulk of the jobs are in China. This could work for everyone if people there were paid enough — and allowed by their government — to buy things made here. That would be trade and everyone would be better off. But trade isn’t really the point of “free trade.”
Then, in It’s not just the iPhone that America doesn’t make, Prestowitz conitinues,

Okay, so yesterday I explained not only that John McCain was wrong to say the iPhone is made in America (as you already knew), but also that most of you were wrong to think it is made in China. I went on to show that the phone is only assembled in China from high-tech parts that are mostly made in Japan, South Korea, and Taiwan. I further explained that production of these parts is not labor intensive, but capital and technology intensive.
In other words, these parts are just the kinds of products American economists, Silicon Valley venture capitalists and entrepreneurs, and Washington political leaders always say America is the best in the world at making. … Then I left you with the question of why, if America is so good at making this stuff, it doesn’t.
[. . .] it was believed that unilateral free trade (keeping one’s markets open, even in the face of protectionism by one’s trading partners) was a winning proposition. Thus, there was no need to be concerned about things like subsidization of key foreign industries or loss of capability in these fields, and hence no need for trade measures that might upset delicate geopolitical relationships.
This economic doctrine has been based upon the assumption of Anglo/American economics that economies of scale either don’t exist in most traded products and industries or are relatively unimportant. That this assumption is dramatically and demonstrably wrong and not accepted by most of the non-Anglo world has not deterred its application to the making of much American and global trade policy.

In other words, it doesn’t work. But we already knew that. We can see it all around us. And it is us who have to live with the results.
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You’ve Got To See This Video From Wisconsin!

This post originally appeared at Campaign for America’s Future (CAF) at their Blog for OurFuture. I am a Fellow with CAF.
You just have to watch this video of a farmer named Tony Schultz in Wisconsin talking to the crowd about what is happening at his local schools and to his own community because of the governor’s tax-cuts-for-corporations, budget-cuts-for-the-people budget:

I found it at this Daily Kos diary, Wisconsin farmer on fire! Awesome video, by strobusguy, who writes,

This video of farmer Tony Schultz speaking captures the feel of the rally today better than anything I’ve yet seen. (But be careful with your volume. The screams and cheers will bust your eardrums!) PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE watch this, and pass it on to everyone.

After watching the video please, please read Richard Eskow’s post, MadisonWorld: A Future Where Corporations Have Human Rights … And Humans Don’t. Excerpts:

Right now Wisconsin is serving as the prototype for United States 2.0, a newly reconstituted nation where corporations have all rights of personhood without any of the responsibilities – and people have all the duties of personhood without any of the rights.
Welcome to your future. They’re preparing it for you right now in America’s heartland.
[. . .] Unions are one of the few bulwarks against corporate corruption in politics. They can sit at the table with politicians and use their leverage to counteract the corporations’ influence, serving as a voice for that vast majority of Americans who are employees and not wealthy business owners. That’s the real reason the corporate oligarchy is targeting the unions. They’ve been pretty blatant about their real goals in Wisconsin, with Senate Majority Leader Scott Fitzgerald saying things like this:
“(If) the money is not there under the auspices of the unions, certainly what you’re going to find is President Obama is going to have a much difficult, much more difficult time getting elected and winning the state of Wisconsin.”
They want the money that drives political power to flow from one source, and one source only: America’s corporations. And Madison is the proving ground for destroying any organized opposition to their corporatist agenda.

More people marched just in Madison yesterday than have ever attended a Tea Party rally. And there were people marching in other states, as well.

For two years, tea party activists and their allies in the GOP have claimed that the hard-right movement represents the true beliefs of the American people. But the crowd in Madison and numerous polls tell a different story.

Tuesday please attend a rally to Defend the American Dream.
Click through to get on the list and locate a rally near you. Many are taking place after working hours.
From the website:
Republicans in Congress are holding the middle class hostage—proposing a federal budget that would would cut 700,000 to 1 million jobs from our communities and slash funding to support preschool and college students, pregnant women, unemployed workers, and much more. This isn’t a budget, it’s a slap in the face to the public workers, services, and institutions making the American Dream possible. We have until the March 18 budget deadline to push Congress in another direction.
So after work on Tuesday, March 15, we’re mobilizing Defend the Dream events in all 50 states at our schools, libraries, fire stations, hospitals, and parks to stand up against Republican attacks. If we can mobilize thousands of people again for a national day of action before the March 18 deadline, we’ll give progressive fighters in Congress a better chance to stave off cuts and pass a budget that invests in the Dream. We’ll show our support for the public workers, services, and institutions making a difference in our lives—but we’ll also make sure that Congress knows we’ll hold them accountable for their vote.
Host your own Defend the Dream Action or sign up for an event near you.
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Rallies Tuesday March 15

Tuesday please attend a rally to Defend the Dream Action.
Click through to get on the list and locate a rally near you. Many are taking place after working hours.
From the website:
Republicans in Congress are holding the middle class hostage—proposing a federal budget that would would cut 700,000 to 1 million jobs from our communities and slash funding to support preschool and college students, pregnant women, unemployed workers, and much more. This isn’t a budget, it’s a slap in the face to the public workers, services, and institutions making the American Dream possible. We have until the March 18 budget deadline to push Congress in another direction.
So after work on Tuesday, March 15, we’re mobilizing Defend the Dream events in all 50 states at our schools, libraries, fire stations, hospitals, and parks to stand up against Republican attacks. If we can mobilize thousands of people again for a national day of action before the March 18 deadline, we’ll give progressive fighters in Congress a better chance to stave off cuts and pass a budget that invests in the Dream. We’ll show our support for the public workers, services, and institutions making a difference in our lives—but we’ll also make sure that Congress knows we’ll hold them accountable for their vote.
Host your own Defend the Dream Action or sign up for an event near you.

On Nuclear Reactors

A year ago I wrote in favor of using nuclear energy to fight global warming. Here is part of what I wrote,

I believe that global warming is the most serious threat humanity faces. So we need to use every possible technology we can to replace energy sources that put greenhouse gases into the air. This includes nuclear energy.
One big problem with nuclear is figuring out what to do with the dangerous radioactive waste. But here’s the thing, when we burn coal and oil we’re just putting the dangerous waste product into the air and it is destroying the planet. So we can’t make the perfect the enemy of the good — nuclear waste is not destroying the planet and fossil-fuel waste is. We simply have to replace coal and oil as our energy source.
Climate change is an emergency. We need to do everything we can.
[. . .]
Make them safe. This means a highly regulated effort, not a free-for-all for profits. …
Buy American. If we are building nuclear power plants we should regulate that they create American jobs…

Today someone asked me if I am still in favor of using nuclear energy. Here is what I replied:
Si, those 30-year-old reactors should not have been allowed to operate. The new generation of reactors can’t melt down, and I think global warming is much more serious than most people think it is. So the trade-off is in favor of using nuclear as long as we stop using coal.
But I think a reactor has to be built and operated by a strong people-oriented government, with no profit considerations at all. Which we do not have.
So I don’t see many governments I would trust right now to do that. Maybe Canada.