The Most Important Graph in the World

Thursday, September 18, 2014

Oregon's aging water-treatment facilities nearing end of useful lives with no replacement money in sight | [feedly]

Just another really important one of the "Billion Better Ways to Budget a Billion Bucks" than on a highway sprawl enabler like the Bridgasaurus Boondogglus.

Oregon's aging water-treatment facilities nearing end of useful lives with no replacement money in sight |

"Let's live on the planet as if we intend to stay."

Wednesday, September 17, 2014

WORD: NO on 90! Stop Koch Brothers from Buying Our Elections

"Let's live on the planet as if we intend to stay."

Stop Koch Brothers from Buying Our Elections:

Vote No on Measure 90!


It's not news that the Koch Brothers are funding tens of thousands of negative political ads all around the country for candidates. Now the Koch Brothers have entered the fray on ballot measures in Oregon through their support of Measure 90. Measure 90's latest campaign financial report is out and it shows over $1 million in special interest and corporate contributions. Even more alarming is the Koch Brothers are now a major supporter of Measure 90.

On September 3, the political committee of Associated Oregon Industries reported receiving a $10,000 contribution from Koch Industries. On September 2, the AOI PAC reported giving a $50,000 contribution to Vote Yes on Measure 90. In the last two years, Koch Industries has given AOI PAC $50,000, making them AOI PAC's largest financial contributor.

Nearly all Measure 90's supporters are wealthy CEOs, business associations and major corporations. They have reported raising over $370,000 just since July 25th. In addition to $50,000 from AOI, the most recent contributions to Measure 90 have been $60,000 from the Oregon Association of Hospitals and Health Administrators, $25,000 from The Standard, an insurance company, and $25,000 from the Oregon Restaurant and Lodging Association.

These Koch Brothers contributions act as a preview of how big money will control our elections under the Top Two system. When candidates have to raise millions of dollars just to make it to the General Election ballot it will greatly limit who will be able to run. A candidate won't be able to compete if they aren't well connected to special interests with deep pockets.

Don't let the Koch Brothers control our elections here in Oregon.

Help us spread the word by forwarding this email to friends, joining the Protect Our Vote Coalition, and following us on Facebook and Twitter.

And, remember, please vote NO on Measure 90. 


Sara Logue

Spokesperson for Protect Our Vote Coalition & School Teacher 

New Urban Ag Study Touts Potential of Small Cities

"Let's live on the planet as if we intend to stay."

New Urban Ag Study Touts Potential of Small Cities

By Kelly McCartney on Sep 16, 2014 05:36 am

To see beyond the hype to urban agriculture's true potential to meet the growing need for healthy food in cities, a recent study published by IOPScience looked at how much food (specifically vegetables) the world's "urban clusters" could actually produce.

Tuesday, September 16, 2014

The concise, conclusive case against ANY new auto infrastructure, anywhere

The Bridgasaurus Boondogglus ("Salem River Crossing" or "Third Bridge" to use the more anodyne, less accurate terms) is indeed a dinosaur relic of mid-20th Century style.

The article at the link does a terrific job laying out why, no matter how many empty, content-free, mind-deadening, blather buzzwords the Chamber of the 1% slings around, the age of highway projects is done, and how no amount of hyped up buzz about shale oil will do anything but separate a few suckers from a last few dollars.

The key is not just that the bridge is like a time capsule from the past, or one of those giant mammoths found frozen in the Siberian tundra -- it's not merely a relic.  It's also an active agent of decay and disorder inSalem because it diverts scarce money from the kinds of projects that would actually make life better for people in Salem.  

That's why this blog keeps championing this one key truth:

There are at least "A Billion Better Ways to Budget A Billion Bucks" than on this mindless project that, even according to its boosters, will do exactly nothing to solve any of the problems it ostensibly was aimed at. That's because it's really nothing but a corporate welfare project with a real estate speculation garnish.

Besides, as the graph and article show, any so called "congestion" in Salem is going to resolve itself quite soon, along with parking issues. Instead of blowing hundreds of millions on this waste of money, the city pooh-bahs only need to delay action and then proudly declare victory, as our brief moments of congestion become even more rare and we begin to wish we had too many drivers seeking parking.

"Let's live on the planet as if we intend to stay."

Monday, September 15, 2014

Acting proud of what you should be ashamed of

City of Salem is proud of squandering millions of dollars on the airport, which is essentially a "for wealthy people only" city park, consuming millions and millions of city dollars over the years.

This is same city that has no weekend transit whatsoever and that keeps cutting the hours and the collection budget of the library and that insists that there's no money to operate branch libraries out where children can actually reach them.

"Let's live on the planet as if we intend to stay."

The Salem Municipal Airport recently completed a four-month,$3.3 million Airfield Electrical and Runway Safety Improvement Project. The project removed and replaced the entire airfield electrical system, several miles of underground conduit and cabling; replaced more than 600 runway and taxiway lighting fixtures, and more than 100 lighted runway and taxiway guidance signs. 

Naomi Klein: capitalism causes climate change

She's right, but the problem in locating the cause in capitalism rather than in humans is that it invites people to imagine that there is some other way that we could organize a world of 7 billion people, maybe heading for 9 billion (depending on when the collapse becomes dominant) that would not also cause climate disruption.

It's 11:59 p.m. In a world of 7+ billion, everything we do causes climate disruption scheduled for midnight.  If, in the few moments we have left before catastrophe, we squander our attention and energy on trying to first reorder capitalism so we can then try to save humanity as a whole, we are surely dooming ourselves.

Like all other religions, capitalism is a mixture of observed reality and experience mixed with a priori magical thinking that is completely divorced from reality, all in service of justifying the status quo of power and privilege on earth. (Indeed, because of its superior feedback mechanisms, capitalism actually is better than many other economic religions at delivering on its promised miracles. Although yes, it's also the least introspective of the religious systems, the one least likely to tolerate and learn from other religions or to allow for coexistence -- it's a jealous god, in other words.)

If we want to maximize our chances of preserving widespread modern human civilization, getting the prices right within capitalism (taxing bads, not goods; making producers and users of resources internalize all the environmental costs their actions create) will do far more for us than a new Hundred Years War over the right economic theology.

"Let's live on the planet as if we intend to stay."


Naomi Klein, John Tarleton
September 12, 2014
The Indypendent
That global warming is man-made and poses a grave threat to our future is widely accepted by progressives. Yet, the most commonly proposed solutions emphasize either personal responsibility for a global emergency (buy energy-efficient light bulbs, purchase a Prius), or rely on market-based schemes like cap-and-trade. These responses are not only inadequate, says Naomi Klein, but represent a lost opportunity to confront climate change's root cause: capitalism.

This Changes Everything: Capitalism vs. the Climate, Klein's much-anticipated new book, is both surprisingly hopeful and deeply personal as she deftly weaves in her story of struggling to conceive her first child while researching the potential collapse of the natural world. In the book, Klein challenges everyone who cares about climate change to strive for a seemingly impossible redistribution of political and economic power. This, she argues, is both necessary and offers the prospect of living in a more just and humane society than the one we know today.

John Tarleton: When it comes to the climate crisis, capitalism is often the elephant in the room that goes unacknowledged. Yet you zero in on it, starting with the title of your book. Why?

Naomi Klein: I put the connection between capitalism and climate change up front because the fact that the life support systems of the planet are being destabilized is telling us that there is something fundamentally wrong with our economic system. What our economy needs to function in a capitalist system is continuous growth and continuous depletion of resources, including finite resources. What our planet needs in order to avoid catastrophic warming and other dangerous tipping points is for humans to contract our use of material resources.

The science of climate change has made this fundamental conflict blindingly obvious. By putting that conflict up front, it breaks a taboo. And sometimes when you break a taboo, there's sort of a relief in just saying it. And that's what I've found so far: This is something that people know. And it's giving permission to just name it. It's a good starting point, so now we can have a real discussion.

Why has that taboo of talking about capitalism and climate change in the same breath become so entrenched here in the United States?

I think it's primarily because capitalism is a religion in the United States. But also because the Left in the United States is extremely Keynesian...

Read the rest of the interview at The Indypendent

For more, see




Sunday, September 14, 2014

Isaac's Garden Toolshed

More local talent: Artist Marnie Jeffers painted the amazing undersea creatures adorning the sturdy toolshed that her husband David designed and built. This is all at Isaac's Garden in Northeast Neighborhood.

"Let's live on the planet as if we intend to stay."


A prophet is without honor in her own land

Angry Letters to the One Member of Congress Who Voted Against the War on Terror -

"Let's live on the planet as if we intend to stay."

Tom Toles goes green - The Washington Post [feedly]

The wittiest and most incisive cartoonist going.  A bittersweet collection, proving you can laugh at impending (self-inflicted) doom.

Tom Toles goes green - The Washington Post
Shared via my feedly reader

"Let's live on the planet as if we intend to stay."

Sunday 9/21 2 p.m. - Party at the Eco-Ball