Florida’s Existential Choice For 2016 — Renewables and Climate Responses or Death by Fossil Fuels

People living in the state of Florida have a big problem — their homeland, as it is today, cannot exist for very long if we double down on fossil fuel burning as Donald Trump has proposed. And this situation, in turn, creates a big problem for Trump — he can’t win the 2016 election without Florida’s support. Trump’s vicious combination of climate change denial, anti-renewables policy stances, and attacks on immigrants whose family members may also be displaced by climate change have considerably damaged his chances of capturing the state’s 29 electoral votes. He’s now in a situation where he’s basically reliant on smoke screens and misinformation to convince the voters of Florida to commit what amounts to an electoral suicide.

us-coal-production

(U.S. coal production has been falling since Obama’s election in 2008. As a result, US carbon emissions have plateaued. The kinds of renewable energy that the American people want can continue to generate reductions in greenhouse gasses flooding the environment and give the people living in Florida a fighting chance. But that won’t happen if we elect Donald Trump as President. Image source: Vox and The Energy Information Administration.)

Trump’s Dirty Energy Pledges Would Mean Certain Devastation For Florida

About a week ago, Trump pledged to, in effect, zero out all spending on renewable energy and climate change related science while pushing hard for an expansion of coal, oil, and gas burning if he is elected. Meanwhile, Trump’s energy team is little more than a covey of climate change deniers hand picked directly from the fossil fuel industry. Trump has pledged to kill the EPA, to roll back Obama’s Clean Power Plan, and to drop out of U.S. emissions reductions pledges to the Paris Climate Summit (COP 21).

If you were looking for an example of a perfect storm of the absolute worst climate change and renewable energy related policies, policies that were guaranteed to put the world back on a track toward a devastating business as usual carbon emission — then Trump fits the bill. And to large parts of Florida, Trump’s policy pledges are starting to look a lot like a promise to inflict climate Armageddon on the low-lying state.

(This year, surface melt was observed for the first time in East Antarctica. This new observation points to increased risk of glacial melt from a region that is capable of dramatically raising global sea levels. The people living in low-lying Florida are becoming more and more concerned. And they should be. Video source: Climate State.)

Miami-Dade County sits on the front lines of this rising climate crisis. Already, the city has pledged 400 million dollars to raise streets and upgrade the city’s drainage system. Why? The oceans in Miami have now risen to the point that tides frequently disrupt transportation, flood neighborhoods, and swamp businesses. These upgrades may buy Miami a decade or two or three. But there’s absolutely no way Miami can survive for any longer than this if Trump commits to his policy choices as-is. Even the rosiest rational predictions for sea level rise by the end of this Century put Miami mostly under water well before the year 2100 under the kinds of emission scenarios that a Trump Presidency would commit us to.

Further up the coast, Jacksonville is still reeling from damages inflicted by Hurricane Matthew — a storm made worse both by the record hot Atlantic Ocean and by the added effect sea level rise had on the height of its wind-driven surge of flooding water. Like Miami, Jacksonville is starting to feel the effects of sea level rise. And its likelihood for continued existence this Century would be quite low if Trump’s fossil fuel burning policies were enacted. The story is much the same for pretty much all of Florida’s coastal cities as well as the southern tip of Florida stretching on north to the Everglades. Sea level rise is an existential threat to these regions now. One that will be made far worse if we continue to burn the fossil fuels that Trump is committed to.

Trump Seeks to Kill Renewables While Amendment 1 Attempts to Stymie Solar

Even as Trump is moving to crush renewable energy progress and responses to climate change at the federal level, hurting Florida’s chances of facing down climate threats, the fossil fuel industry and a number of aligned utilities are attempting to stymie solar energy development across the state. Like much of America, residents within Florida are attracted by renewable energy. In fact, a recent poll showed that four out of five voters supported increasing levels of renewable energy development. Home and business owners alike want access to new, clean, independent energy choices. People rightly concerned about the impacts of climate change want more clean energy.

clean-energy-costs

(As the effects of climate change worsened, clean energy costs have been falling. Now costs are so low that financial benefits to individual energy users abound. Fossil fuel industry is acting in increasingly aggressive ways to stifle access by using laws to prevent people from using clean energy sources. Trump is fighting to help these corporations prevent you and your family members from taking advantage of the multiple benefits clean energy provides. Image source: The Whitehouse.)

Since renewable energy is so popular among voters, and even among republicans, fossil fuel special interests often resort to deceptive tactics in order to keep people captive to harmful energy consumption. And this election, utilities have attempted to protect their monopoly power interests by forcing anti-solar Amendment 1 on the state. Amendment 1 aims to open a loop-hole for utilities to charge independent renewable power generators exorbitant fees and to suppress the rate of solar adoption in the state. Amendment 1’s language has been called deceitful by the Union of Concerned Scientists. It’s a proposal that has been put forward by a collection of fossil fuel special interests including Exxon Mobile, Duke Power, The Koch Brothers, Florida Power and Light and others. And if the Amendment passes, it will help to lock Florida in a fossil fueled climate change nightmare. One that is, even now, starting to nibble away at the vital cities that enable the state to function.

Yuge Wave of Climate/Renewable Energy Voters?

With both the future existence of Florida’s cities and access to renewable energy under threat, voters in Florida are turning out like never before. Nationalized Hispanic and Caribbean immigrants whose families may also be forced to seek refuge in the U.S. due to climate change are voting in droves. And the people of the increasingly swamped Miami Dade County are flooding the polls. There, fully 55 percent of registered voters had cast a ballot before election day.

The record turnout in places like Miami-Dade helped bouy the Florida early vote to 6.4 million — more than the total post election day count for the year 2000. This large turnout has come as registered democratic voters lead republicans by 92,000 coming into election day. But first and second generation citizens may well be generating even more of a democratic edge. According to Vice, 86.9 percent more Latinos voted early than during 2012. And a good portion of that 455,000 total are registered as independents and even republicans. Meanwhile, there is some indication that well less than 90 percent of republicans are voting for Trump.

While Trump’s anti-immigrant rhetoric may have helped to generate some of this shift, it is likely that rising climate and energy concerns are also affecting the Florida vote. A poll from earlier this year found that concerns about climate change from Florida residents was on the rise. Fully 81.3 percent of Florida peninsular residents expressed moderate to serious concern about climate change as an issue. And though debate moderators and their mainstream media sponsors failed to raise the critical issues of climate change and renewable energy in the televised match-ups between Clinton and Trump, Clinton frequently harangued Trump for his noted extreme degree of climate change denial. Furthermore, Trump’s own statements and policy choices have produced enough ripples in the media to generate a general understanding that Trump is fighting against popular advances in renewable energy while stifling responses to climate change in a state where people are becoming increasingly aware that they’re under the gun. Together, these underlying political forces are likely to sap voters away from Trump in a state he must win to secure the 2016 election.

Let’s hope that happens. The future of Florida and so many other important things hangs in the balance.

Links:

Vox

The Energy Information Administration

Trump to Zero Out Clean Energy Funding

Climate State

U.S. Voters Want Renewable Energy

The Whitehouse

Four Reasons to Vote No on Anti-Solar Amendment 1

Florida Early Vote Beats Entire 2000 Turnout

Floridians are More Concerned About Climate Change

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182 Comments

  1. John McCormick

     /  November 8, 2016

    Our great grandchildren will not survive if America remains divided about global warming. In eight years CO2 concentration will increase 32 ppm.

    Reply
    • The populace is united. The government has been divided by fossil fuel monetary influence on governing bodies. We can break this unhealthy relationship is we see clearly and act with purpose. But we must make absolutely clear with our votes that delaying responses on climate change is no longer acceptable.

      Reply
      • John McCormick

         /  November 9, 2016

        Robert, we can agree the Congress will do nothing to address global warming. States can. Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative caps power plant CO2 emissions and that can be extended to include a cap on transportation fuels. It is in the hands of Northeast Governors to design and implement that larger cap.

        Reply
        • Congress can. But the current Congress won’t. Nor will Trump. It is back to the states now. And that means both slower adoption rates than are possible and a much higher likelihood of following a business as usual emissions path.

          That said, if enough states with strong economies go all renewables as fast as possible, then we may still have a shot. As the media said so many times last night — the window is narrowing.

  2. I hope everyone is out there voting. Critical day for our country.

    Reply
  3. Mar-o-Lago will make an interesting artificial reef.

    Reply
    • Abel Adamski

       /  November 9, 2016

      But don’t worry a President Trump will ensure the owners are adequately compensated. I envisage an effective $500, 000 “excess” , i.e property owners carry the excess or have private insurance covering that and the Taxpayer will foot the bill for the remaining on the books value at a figure the owners determine. This from a reduced tax base due to the tax cots to the wealthy.

      I always suspected that was the Donalds primary reason for his presidential tilt, protect his at risk from Climate Change assets (including in NY )

      Reply
  4. coloradobob

     /  November 8, 2016

    Huge Puffin Die-Off May Be Linked to Hotter Seas
    Hundreds of birds are washing up dead in the Bering Sea, causing alarm among scientists. It may be linked to climate change.

    http://news.nationalgeographic.com/2016/11/tufted-puffins-die-off-bering-sea-alaska-starvation-warm-water-climate-change/

    Reply
  5. coloradobob

     /  November 8, 2016

    A 19th century plague revived in an age of climate change
    As seas warm, cholera may find the world a bit more hospitable
    Emma Glennon

    In Haiti and beyond, cholera is back. Not only is it better adapted to the modern world but its resurgence following the hurricane shows how it may grow stronger as our climate changes.

    Untreated, a person stricken with cholera in the morning can die in the afternoon — but a simple and inexpensive treatment can reduce a victim’s chance of death to less than 1 per cent.

    https://www.ft.com/content/33e07bdc-a5c4-11e6-8898-79a99e2a4de6

    Reply
  6. climatehawk1

     /  November 8, 2016

    Tweet scheduled shortly.

    Reply
  7. Cate

     /  November 8, 2016

    http://www.independent.co.uk/news/uk/home-news/scotland-wind-energy-power-houses-month-a7401666.html

    Scotland shows how to do it. Och aye!

    “Wind turbines in Scotland provided enough electricity to supply the average needs of almost all Scotland’s homes last month, according to a report.Data from WeatherEnergy showed turbines generated 792,717MWh of electricity to the National Grid in October, up more than a quarter on the same month last year. The amount is enough to supply the average needs of 87% of Scottish households, WWF Scotland said.
    WWF Scotland director Lang Banks said: “Thanks to a combination of increased capacity and stronger winds, output from turbines surged by more than a quarter compared to the same period last year – supplying power equivalent to the electrical needs of over two million homes.”

    Reply
  8. Cate

     /  November 8, 2016

    Wipneus over at ASIF offers some new graphs on sea-ice extent and area, which will be updated daily.

    It’s scarily clear from these images just how far off the beaten track 2016 has gone.

    Reply
    • Cate

       /  November 8, 2016

      And the other one.

      Reply
    • Ouch and double ouch. The Scots are doing the right thing. And the Arctic and Antarctic are giving us a big warning that we should have all done the same thing yesterday.

      Great related comment on the La Niña post by Climate Hawk who just stated that without delaying tactics by republicans, we could have easily had 20 percent wind based electricity by 2020. This legislative sand bagging by fossil fuel interests hurts everyone.

      Reply
  9. mulga mumblebrain

     /  November 9, 2016

    In the catastrophic eventuality of a Trump victory, there seem to me to be three chinks of light left. One that Trump will prove not to be suicidally self-destructive, he will double-cross his fossil-fuel financers and act rationally. Anything is possible. Two that the rest of the world will just ignore the USA and the other denialist lunatics, like Australia, Saudi Arabia and Russia, and get on with driving down the cost of renewables and their installation. Not perfect, probably insufficient and too late, but something to empower a post-Trump return to sanity in Exceptionalastan. And three, the US population might finally rise up to protect their children from disaster. I still wonder at how passively humanity is being driven to the global gas-chamber.

    Reply
  10. In addition to the renewable energies referenced here (of which we need to be aware of all the toxic chemicals, mining of minerals, steel use,etc that go into these things), nothing around abrupt climate change could really be addressed if we NEVER even talk about mass human overpopulation and our cruel animal agriculture practices. We’ve gained 6 billion humans on this planet just since 1900 and over 2 billion (!) since I was born in 1985!! 25%- if not more, due to land use changes- of all GHG’s come from animal agriculture. It’s always renewable tech, renewable tech, renewable tech, never any discussion of too many humans and far too much meat and dairy . On one of those topics: https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2016/nov/07/tax-meat-and-dairy-to-cut-emissions-and-save-lives-study-urges

    And since she will probably become US president, we need to be aware of Hillary Clinton’s tired referencing of needing natural gas as a ‘bridge fuel’ to renewables during one of the only mentions of energy or climate change at all in the presidential debates and her strong pushing of natural gas fracking as Secretary of State. And, the chief of Clinton’s presidential transition team is strong natural gas fracking proponent and former Interior Secretary Ken Salazar. Not saying Clinton is not clearly better than Trump on ‘environmental’ issues, but must be aware

    Reply
    • well, there goes the ‘probably become us president.’ um, wtf

      Reply
      • Dennis Mitchell

         /  November 9, 2016

        Ya we voted for the anti Christ. It is always darkest before the storm. We have lost the main point of our Constitution, balance of power. Obama’s “promise of hope” got swallow up in buisness as usual. So will Trump’s. Four years to suffer the consequences of our behavior. He can’t fix a sinking ship. In four years we can have a candidate that tells the truth about, decline of empire, peak oil, globalization, change of the nature of work, and most important the environment. We would have been better under Hillary, but she did not have the vision to lead us to survival. In four years the backlash will be extreme! We need to have someone waiting who is free from buisness as usual, has true vision…please let it be someone with some emotional maturity. Any ideas?
        Creativity starts with an act of distruction.

        Reply
    • The primary driver of climate change is fossil fuel burning. That is enabled by higher populations with higher consumption of fossil fuel energy sources. If the fossil fuel burning stops, though, you’ve dealt with about 70-80 percent of emissions and pretty much all of the old carbon emissions. If you achieve that goal, then you absolutely also need to look at land management and agriculture. But the heavy lift is fossil fuels.

      Reply
  11. Abel Adamski

     /  November 9, 2016

    R.S, any word back re DT. ?

    Reply
  12. Andy_in_SD

     /  November 9, 2016

    Past five years hottest on record, says UN weather agency

    8 November 2016 – In a new detailed analysis of the global climate between 2011 and 2015 – the hottest 5-year period on record – the United Nations weather agency has found an increasingly visible human footprint on extreme weather and climate events with dangerous and costly impacts.

    The record temperatures were accompanied by rising sea levels and declines in Arctic sea-ice extent, continental glaciers and northern hemisphere snow cover, the UN World Meteorological Organization (WMO) said in a news release today.

    http://www.un.org/apps/news/story.asp?NewsID=55503#.WCJ6_sknuu8

    Reply
  13. Cate

     /  November 9, 2016

    OT: can Florida count votes any slower??

    What do they count them with, their noses or something??

    Arrrgghhhhh!!!
    😉

    Reply
    • Not looking good right now.

      Reply
      • Nancy

         /  November 9, 2016

        Not looking good at all. Nate Silver just said he thinks Trump will win the presidency. I am sick to my stomach. How stupid are Americans that they might elect a climate denying huckster?

        Reply
        • Mark from New England

           /  November 9, 2016

          Very.

        • Jacob

           /  November 9, 2016

          The history of the U.S. in the 21st century says it all (about our collective stupidity) and we’re making it worse all the time.

        • wili

           /  November 9, 2016

          pardon my french, but f nate silver…he has predicted a clinton victory mostly by wide margins for months now. Maybe if he had managed to convey how likely a trump victory actually was, more people would have gotten out to fight to prevent it. trump should really thank silver for his victory, if that’s what it turns out to be

      • Cate

         /  November 9, 2016

        I’ve gone over to #ElectionNight for the communal tearing of hair and gnashing of teeth.

        Reply
  14. Cate

     /  November 9, 2016

    See this, at the NYT? Check out the gauges…

    http://www.nytimes.com/elections/results/president

    Reply
  15. Matt

     /  November 9, 2016

    OMG what have you Americans done????????????? I thought we in Australia were the dumbest society on the planet voting in Abbot!!!!!!! I’m speechless!
    Bang goes any environmental protection, a boon for tar sands production, forget the Paris agreement……. Not that I held out much hope anyway but this is now the largest nail put in the coffin for the human race😦
    He has control of both your houses of parliament!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
    Our stock market has tanked, Asia has tanked, I don’t even want to know what is going to happen on the DOW……….
    Numb, I have a group of about 20 working with me, it’s like someone has died…..

    Reply
    • mulga mumblebrain

       /  November 9, 2016

      The Chinese and Germans will have to do the heavy lifting, but they have already been doing so.

      Reply
    • Matt — I have to agree. We are now officially the stupidest nation on the planet. Many of us fought as hard as we could against this outcome. Now I fear those of us working for progress and the prevention of harms will be very hard put to it — and very soon.

      Reply
      • So begins our widespread flight from reality as occurred in Nazi Germany.

        It was oligarchy against fascism, I think. Fascism won. We’re about to find out that oligarchy has its good points, I think.

        On the other hand, he might just break up the Eastern financial establishment, that got us into this global warming mess in the first place. Or he might destroy the world even sooner than scheduled.

        Giving nuclear weapons to a such a very ignorant man who never changes his mind doesn’t seem like the best idea we’ve ever had.

        Chances are, we’ve just shown that we really are too stupid to live.

        Thank you for all your efforts, Robert.

        Reply
      • Dave Person

         /  November 9, 2016

        Hi Robert,
        Horrible night. America is not the stupidest country on earth because I believe we will see a rash of European governments move rightward and adopt anti-immigrant and anti-globalization positions in the coming years following Britain and the US’s lead. Flight and fright will rule, not reflection and reason as fearful humans react to a world that is changing far more rapidly than can be addressed by our limited evolutionary tool set. The US is beset by a large and mostly white population of 50+ year olds that grew up in the womb of convenience subsidized by fossil fuels. Until death reduces their numbers to a small fraction, moving the country to effectively fight climate change will be extremely difficult.

        Reply
  16. They have sealed their fate.

    Reply
  17. John S

     /  November 9, 2016

    Really? Murdoch et al win again? This old heart was already feeling dislocated (attrib RS)…

    This feels like valley of death times. Let’s not succumb to fear nor despair. The work just got a whole lot harder, but we are needed more than ever.

    BTW the Supermoon on November 14 will be the closest a Full Moon has been to Earth since January 25, 1948. The next time a Full Moon is even closer to Earth will be on November 25, 2034. Let’s raise a glass or two with friends, who knows what will reside beneath old Luna by ’34. It’s up to all of us with functional frontal lobes that it not be horror.

    (RS just delete this, I’m compelled to comment, but to say what?)

    Reply
  18. Jacob

     /  November 9, 2016

    I did my part to prevent this outcome. Unfortunately I am only one man. TPTB in the U.S. have successfully engineered the dumbing down of the bulk of the population. I find it unfathomable that Trump might win. What a damn shame. “Let it all burn and damn future humans” is the attitude of the people to make this election process even close. SMDH. Sorry world, I’m embarrassed for this, but this embarrassment pales to the deep sadness I have for the fate of the natural world and its creatures.

    Reply
    • Mark from New England

       /  November 9, 2016

      Well said.

      Reply
    • +1.

      Many of us fought hard against this outcome. I hope the world realizes that what happened last night does not reflect on the millions and millions of us who did everything we could to prevent it.

      Reply
  19. Matt

     /  November 9, 2016

    Dow futures down 744

    Reply
    • Matt

       /  November 9, 2016

      Has it ever dropped 1000 points in a day?

      Reply
      • Not sure about number of points, but it dropped, like, 25% in a single day back in, I think, 1987. That would be equivalent to about 4500 points on today’s Dow.

        Reply
        • Republicans and Donald Trump victorious — a prelude to the great American tailspin.

        • Abel Adamski

           /  November 9, 2016

          TRrump, the GOP and Breitbart now have the reigns and are 60% accountable for the future, the other 40% I attribute to Murdoch and the media.

          At least we know the identity of the Antichrist

        • Isn’t this a drop in DOW futures? The daily drop/gain will be determined tomorrow. I doubt it will be this severe, but it’s strange times.

        • Yes, correct, this is futures dropping. I’d guess that, as with Brexit, a drop will be short-lived, but with a wild card like Trump, hard to predict. You’d have to know what he will say and do over the next few weeks, and since he probably doesn’t know himself …

    • Matt

       /  November 9, 2016

      Make that 791

      Reply
  20. wili

     /  November 9, 2016

    omg

    Reply
    • RE your post further up…

      Nate Silver did point out that Trump’s chances were higher than most pollsters. But it seems that pretty much everyone missed getting the electorate right for this election.

      Reply
      • izzy

         /  November 9, 2016

        Including the DNC, who had a galvanizingly popular candidate in Sanders, and decided to undercut him in favor of Ms. “My Turn” (Clinton). And now all the whining about how it’s everybody else’s fault. Good riddance to that crowd, except they’re still here.

        Reply
      • And Nate actually got it exactly right, but as one of three possible outcomes (Trump losing popular vote, but winning in electoral votes). Definitely still someone to pay attention to.

        Reply
  21. Matt

     /  November 9, 2016

    In relation to this article………….. Florida has chosen – Death by Fossil Fuels

    Reply
    • Again… We keep putting ourselves in worse and worse positions. This is how collapse happens, folks. Eventually you get to a place from which you can’t recover.

      Reply
  22. utoutback

     /  November 9, 2016

    “Fasten yer chin strap, Hell is coming to breakfast”.
    My nod to Colorado Bob

    Reply
  23. utoutback

     /  November 9, 2016

    Reply
    • mulga mumblebrain

       /  November 9, 2016

      That is a very unflattering picture of Clinton. Look on the bright side-Trump winning means you won’t be sold out for the third time running. You have an identified enemy, and, if Trump is as lunatic vis-a-vis the environment as he has said, then if that does not get people out, on the streets and organising, then nothing will, With luck, he’ll be a one-term blunder, and someone like a female version of what Sanders pretended (in my opinion) to be can be found to have a go next time, on a sane platform, one that actually says we are in the shite, up to our necks, and its time to start cleaning out the Augean mess. ‘The situation is hopeless-YOU must take the next step’.

      Reply
      • Hi mulga-

        I always appreciate hearing your take on things, just FYI

        It’s always possible that some good may come of this. But the probabilities are against it.

        Its actually possible to fix a car engine by throwing a wrench at it – but how often does that happen?

        In my analytical chemistry pharmaceutical drug R&D experience, when a project starts to go out of control the only thing that will bring the project back into control is the application of true information, and an appropriate adjustment using that true information. Ideally, you have an organization that functions almost like a feedback driven machine, in which the analytical chemistry, project management, and product formulation teams all function by feeding true information back into the project, to keep it in control, keep the FDA happy and develop a useful product that actually works.

        This situation is far from that paradigm of appropriate action to bring the system back into control.

        This is the opposite – the system going out of control, making adjustments based on false information. Our social vehicle cannot be driven this way, and will almost inevitably end up in a ditch.

        Only, this ditch is big enough to swallow the world.

        Reply
      • T-rev

         /  November 9, 2016

        >and someone like a female version of what Sanders pretended (in my opinion) to be can be found

        They had one, Jill Stein. Americans just chose not to vote for her.

        Reply
        • If you understand anything about the history of American elections, Stein had about as much chance to win this thing as a butterfly has of flying strait through a hurricane.

      • Dave Person

         /  November 9, 2016

        Mulga,
        You don’t know Bernie Sanders. I have known Sanders since the mid 1980s and can tell you, he is the real deal. Nothing “pretend” about him.

        Reply
        • Given issues of the day, Bernie would have probably been a stronger candidate to face down Trump. And we may find out whether or not that’s true in 2020. Although he’ll be rather advanced in years at that time. Perhaps he’ll still have the fortitude to make a run. Warren might be a good choice as well. We’ll see.

          I do think Clinton should have added Bernie as the VP choice. My opinion is that it would have helped to put some fire in the belly and provide a counter for Trump’s faux populism. Again, we’ll never know now and it is so easy to play ‘shoulda, coulda, woulda.’

      • DJ LX

         /  November 9, 2016

        Agreed. Grump’s victory puts Elizabeth Warren in a perfect position to win in 2020. By then folks will have had enough of Grump’s bullshit. And, Warren generates genuine excitement and doesn’t come with the baggage Clinton did. Another potential silver lining would be if Clinton ends up winning the popular vote,. Perhaps that would provide the impetus impetus to finally do away with the asinine electoral college system.

        Reply
    • Ailsa

       /  November 9, 2016

      Oh, and there we were, all in one place
      A generation lost in space
      With no time left to start again
      So come on, Jack, be nimble, Jack be quick
      Jack Flash sat on a candlestick
      ‘Cause fire is the devils only friend
      Oh, and as I watched him on the stage
      My hands were clenched in fists of rage
      No angel born in Hell
      Could break that Satan’s spell
      And as flames climbed high into the night
      To light the sacrificial rite
      I saw Satan laughing with delight
      The day the music died
      He was singing…

      Reply
  24. Who knows… climate science is likely going to take a big hit in the USA. The Chinese may be handed a chance to become world leaders in climate science. They have the money, but will they see and seize the opening?

    Following climate papers on Google Scholar, a lot of the cutting edge stuff is being done by Chinese scientists… many are working in China, but many are also here in the US. If they lose their jobs…

    Reply
    • About the time we emigrate to China, Trump will nuke it.

      I agree with the person who posted above that now we know what the Antichrist looks like. He’s orange, and has a ferret living on his head. He speaks in tongues, and a low moan from wind blowing through his head can be heard when the wind blows hard enough.

      Reply
    • Yep. It looks like we’ll follow the same path as Australia and Canada which doesn’t bode well for our ability to track the crisis or warn people when events are eminent.

      Reply
  25. Sheri

     /  November 9, 2016

    12:24 am in Arizona, last states are to be called yet, but I can tell you that Trump will get Az 11 electoral votes. Our spread between candidates is more than in Florida when it was called. I am very surprised at the whole evening, I thought Clinton would win but not by a landslide but I didn’t think this would happen. No, I didn’t vote for the Donald just to be clear. Of course, it’s no good for our common cause here.

    Reply
  26. mark ó dochartaigh

     /  November 9, 2016

    The barest silver lining on the storm cloud, when the economy tanks taking the world economy with it and cannot be bounced because interest rates are already at zero, oil demand will drop sharply. See the drop on oil usage at the beginning of the last recession. Only this time ‘Murica really has turned Japanese. Although I was a Bernie supporter, the last four months I have been canvassing and phone banking for Hillary.

    Reply
    • Two edged sword. Loss of investment capital will reduce our ability to shift away from fixed fossil fuel infrastructure. Those sources will idle and splutter more but a full energy transition becomes less likely.

      Reply
  27. Cate

     /  November 9, 2016

    Winter IS coming.

    Reply
  28. June

     /  November 9, 2016

    I’m feeling sick to my stomach. I can’t sleep. My mind just can’t process this. I keep thinking about all the horrible ramifications, both here in the US and worldwide, the suffering ahead for so many people.

    Reply
    • June, things will be bad, and worst than we expected. But don´t let it paralise you. If you´re this bad, go outside in a walk, in a calm natural place. It may show signs of the problems happening in the world, but don´t linger on these. See the resilience of trees, hear the animals that are still there, let nature calm you down. It will do that, if you let it.

      Trump have promised to do as much harm as it was possible, yes, but even the President of the USA isn´t omnipotent. Small actions will still matter. The individual choices of each person will still matter. Time will pass, and there will be new elections, and new chances to change the greater course of your nation. And hope is only gone if there´s no one fighting anymore.

      Reply
  29. Phil

     /  November 9, 2016

    A sad day. No doubt, there will be a lot of soul searching. Similar things happened here in Australia after Abbott got elected and even more so after Turnbull was re-elected. All you can do is continue the good fight.

    One thing is certain, Trump has no answers to or prospect of overcoming the hornet’s nest he has kicked over. He will not be able to restore the lost manufacturing jobs unless he is willing to lower US wages a lot further. If he goes a protectionist path, it will be reciprocated by other affected nations.

    It is a shame that the working class (and retirees) commonly vote for the parties most responsible for the decline in their living standards. Similar with BREXIT as well. Also the agricultural based communities.

    However, what goes around will eventually come around again. Just a matter of hanging in there, not giving up hope and remaining true to yourselves. Just a pity that the clock is ticking in relation to climate change impacts.

    Reply
    • So true… let’s hope good sense wins out in the end., but this article sums up what probably a lot of people feel right now https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2016/nov/09/donald-trump-us-president-nightmare

      “We thought the United States would step back from the abyss. We believed, and the polls led us to feel sure, that Americans would not, in the end, hand the most powerful office on earth to an unstable bigot, sexual predator and compulsive liar.”

      “Today the United States stands not as a source of inspiration to the rest of the world but as a source of fear.”

      Reply
    • It appears that it is a human instinct to find a strong leader, and shelter under that strong leader in a time of troubles. Global warming is such a time of troubles and people have responded to that instinct, I think.

      OK, so what do we do now?

      We have to convince this ignorant man that global warming is real, and persuade him to flip-flop on the issue.

      He has flip-flopped before. If we can convince him that global warming denial is an
      Establishment plot (true) we have a shot at doing that, I think.

      Here’s what happened during this election, IMO. He met with Henry Kissinger and discussed foreign policy. Kissinger, as an agent of the Rockefeller clique, was horrified to confirm that Trump would not sign on to the expansionist American empire scenario. So Kissinger reported back to the oligarchy that Trump should not be President. He also confirmed that Trump wanted to use nuclear weapons as tools of coercion to bend other nations to his will – a policy that will lead inevitably to nuclear proliferation, at least.

      So the Rockefeller clique decided to oppose Trump, based on multiple sources of information, not just Kissinger. They dug for dirt, and the Billy Bush tape was what they found. They withheld that information until the appropriate moment, and then had their flagship newspapers the Washington Post and the New York Times cooperate in torpedoing Trump. The aim was to persuade women not to vote for him, a strategy that worked at least initially.

      They also released the information about the Kissinger interview to Joe Scarborough and Mika Brzezinski, with General Michael Hayden, a former head of the CIA (a tool of the oligarchy) there to confirm Trump’s policy of reckless use of nuclear weapons. But they knew that scandal was what shifts the polls, hence the release of the Billy Bush tape.

      But, then, the oligarchy got greedy. What they wanted was Hillary as President, but wanted her to be ineffective, and wanted to deny her the Senate. Investors love gridlock, and that was what they wanted. So, they got the FBI director to release his carefully ambiguous letter to Congress, about the Wiener emails. At the appropriate time, calculated to deny Hillary the Senate but allow her the Presidency, they allowed the FBI director to send a second letter confirming that there would be no criminal charges.

      So, Trump was right – it is a rigged system.

      The oligarchy rigged it to deny Bernie Sanders the Presidential nomination, and they rigged it to give them what they wanted – a weakened foreign policy hawk (Clinton) effectively contained by an opposing Congress.

      Only, they miscalculated.

      But the people who tried to rig the election are the same people who created the global warming denial movement in the first place – the Eastern financial establishment and political oligarchy centered on the Rockefeller clique, I think.

      The Rockefeller clique used ExxonMobil to create global warming denial. ExxonMobil is the union of two fragments of John D. Rockefeller’s Standard Oil monopoly.

      http://www.ucsusa.org/sites/default/files/legacy/assets/documents/global_warming/exxon_report.pdf

      Smoke, Mirrors, and Hot Air: How ExxonMobil Uses Big Tobacco’s Tactics to Manufacture Uncertainty on Climate Science – Union of Concerned Scientists.

      Reply
      • Well, now what we have is an extreme right wing isolationist president backed by a mostly right wing Congress. Many of the harmful Bush era policies will come back, but far worse than before. Plus we’ll see Obamacare explode, we’ll see pretty much all the energy efficiency and renewable energy measures come under attack, and we can’t rule out that Social Security and Medicare will be completely gutted. If Trump gets his tax cut through, and there’s a decent chance given the republicans holding both houses of legislature, then it’s adding inequality on top of inequality while pretty much every positive government program is either cut or removed entirely. The Supreme Court choice which by law should have been Obamas moves to Trump due to an obstructionist congress and we probably end up with someone worse than Scalia. If your above description is accurate, then these fools shot themselves in the foot. But for their pains everyone else is going to get it in the face.

        Reply
        • Yes. The oligarchy has all of the resources and covert manipulation techniques of the CIA at their command, but they do make mistakes – just not very often. They have an extreme ability to get what they want – but they want things that sometimes don’t make sense. In the case of global warming, they apparently want to melt the Arctic sea ice so they can drill for oil up there. At least for the public consumption of the readers of Foreign Relations, they paint a rosy picture of the Arctic as a new Mediterranean sea, populated by a rich elite.

          But I think they underestimate the risk from the methane hydrates and I think they miscalculated the election. In their efforts to elect a weakened Clinton, they shot their (and our) feet clean off.

          One thing we need to know about Trump – is his global warming denial honest ignorance, or is it a calculated position because he thinks the U.S. will be a global warming winner?

          If it is honest ignorance, we have a shot at changing even Trump’s mind. If it is a calculated position from a man who knows that global warming is real but is determined to lie about it for political reasons, that’s harder, I think.

        • If that’s what they want, they are monumental idiots. That said, FP appears to be more pro renewables lately.

        • By the way, by “rigging” the election I meant that the oligarchy uses their controlled press power and their CIA social manipulation skills to get what they want, not that they actually rig the voting process. Still, we ought to get rid of the electronic voting machines, in favor something that leaves an indelible record of voter intent like punched cards.

          If Foreign Affairs is becoming more positive about renewable energy, that’s great. Maybe the shine is wearing off the “Go North, Young Man” idea about melting the Arctic. It always was a crazy idea, due to the catastrophic ecological effects. But from the output of Foreign Affairs and the way Scott Borgerson’s articles were promoted including testimony before Congress, somebody very powerful – maybe David Rockefeller himself – really likes the idea. There are ongoing efforts to build an international framework to allow an orderly exploitation of the Arctic – and part of that strategy includes relocating native people.

          “Borgerson envisions a not-too-distant future in which Anchorage and Reykjavik become as dynamic and nearly as important as Singapore and Dubai are today”

          https://energeopolitics.com/category/arctic/

        • The Bush family has acted as a tool of the Eastern financial establishment for decades. The support of the Eastern financial establishment was essential for Senator Prescott Bush, President George Bush Senior, and President George W. Bush. George Bush Senior was, of course, the head of the CIA for a while, and the CIA is another tool of the Eastern financial establishment.

          I’ve been thinking of Billy Bush as a coincidental source of the tape that almost torpedoed Trump, but maybe not.

          Maybe the cameras rolling while Billy Bush egged Trump on to make damaging statements about women was not a coincidence.

          Or maybe it was a coincidence, but the existence of the tape became known to the Oligarchy through the Bush family.

  30. Tonight was an unmitigated disaster. The Blue Firewall failed spectacularly, unlike anything else I’ve seen in presidential races. But a Trump winning doesn’t tell the whole story, because tonight also represents a stunning loss of opportunity for Democrats in the House and Senate. They have only picked up ONE seat in the Senate and might not get higher than that with Ayotte leading in NH. They also picked up a measly 14 seats in the House, leaving a big majority still in the hands of the Republicans (by 40-45 seats). Of course, there will now be lasting fallout in the Supreme Court, with Scalia’s seat liable to be filled by a conservative and a real chance that he’ll be able to stack the court up over the next 4 years. Expect almost nothing to get done on climate change. We’ll be LUCKY if we keep what we have now. Exceedingly lucky. The Paris treaty might be toast. We’ll have to see.

    Reply
    • csnavywx

       /  November 9, 2016

      Take time. Mourn. But then get back up and get ready to fight. The silver lining is that a presidency is only 4 years. Those are 4 critical years to be sure, but there’s still a chance to turn this ship around in 5-10 years. Gotta fight until there’s no chance left.

      Reply
      • Nancy

         /  November 9, 2016

        I’m 67 years old. 5-10 years is a long time for me. I’ve been a climate activist for 12 years. I used to be very hopeful that people and our government were listening to scientists and activists, but now I know the stupid people are in charge.

        I don’t have much hope. The deplorables are in charge. We are toast.

        Reply
        • John S

           /  November 9, 2016

          And the frustration of it is in the quip “never argue with stupid people, they drag you down to their level and then beat you with experience”

          There obviously wasn’t a clean break between neanderthals and other pre-humans, and home sapiens of the 21st., and we are regressing again. More people with brains that can go no further than prettier fur on the floor of the cave.

        • John S

           /  November 9, 2016

          sorry didn’t mean anyone looks ape-like../.a clean break between the brains of apes and humans

      • I agree. But it’s going to be extraordinarily difficult to set things right at this point. This presidency alone could cost us 1 C worth of warming.

        Reply
        • csnavywx

           /  November 9, 2016

          It could, yes. But 2.5-3.5C is still better than 4+. 2.5 might be manageable, if barely. Still some room to avoid the catastrophic end.

        • 1.5 C is harmful. 2 C is bad. 3 C is terrible. 4 C is catastrophic. 6 C this Century is unimaginable devastation.

  31. Suzanne

     /  November 9, 2016

    I have hardly been present here for months because I was working to get Hillary elected. Not because she was the perfect candidate…but because she was the only candidate with a chance of winning that could do something about CC. I am now officially in mourning and in the grip of a deep seated fear with the outcome that elected a lunatic and CC denier to be POTUS.
    My fear is for all the people of the world and for our beautiful biosphere.
    I cannot stop crying…
    I cannot believe that we are a nation of so many entitled, ignorant people.
    I am devastated for us all.
    What have we done?

    Reply
    • T-rev

       /  November 9, 2016

      >What have we done?

      The great thing about democracy is that it gives every voter a chance to do something stupid. – Art Spander

      Reply
    • Suzanne —

      You did the right thing for all the right reasons. You worked hard to give us, America, the world, a chance. And for that we owe you our deepest gratitude.

      Your response is appropriate. There is cause to mourn. There is cause to be afraid. But I come back over and over again to this — ‘nothing worthwhile is ever easy.’ The fight to save the lives of our fellow creatures, to save our civilizations as well, will be the toughest one we ever undertake. As we saw last night, the inherent ignorance, anger, and greed of so many among us is often insurmountable. Sometimes, compassion and reason are blocked out. Sometimes they fail to make a path through the heart of darkness. But because there is still so much that is precious that can still be saved, we must continue to fight on.

      I know how hard this must be for you. I share your grief, your anguish. And I deeply honor your service to a cause greater than any nation — the cause of life itself.

      Love to you.

      –R

      Reply
      • Suzanne

         /  November 9, 2016

        Thank you Robert for your kind thoughts and words. I am so grateful for all the extraordinary work you do for us to keep us up to date and informed with all the latest CC information. I am grateful to you and to all here who faithfully and relentlessly work on this and other environmental issues.

        We all will grieve..and then move forward the best we can. Have already heard from 350 and other groups on how best to move forward…so that’s what we will do.
        I just hope Progressives will…quickly… stop pointing fingers at each other…and focus on finding solutions…because like it or not…we are truly Stronger Together.
        Peace and love to you and everyone here,
        Suzanne

        Reply
      • Ailsa

         /  November 9, 2016

        Suzanne – thank you for your work. Do mourn, your tears are important – they are a means to lift your boat onto whatever comes next… and it will become apparent.

        Robert, thank you so much for your incredibly valuable work, insightful analysis and huge heart.

        Reply
        • Suzanne

           /  November 9, 2016

          Ailsa…Thank you too for your kind words. I have been doing a lot of self help today…treating myself with love…by surrounding myself with friends both real and online…so we can all lift each other up today as we come to grips with this new and sad reality.

  32. Ryan in New England

     /  November 9, 2016

    America has just proved to the world that our citizens are not responsible enough to handle a democracy. The problem is it won’t just be the US that is affected by this self inflicted gunshot. This is more like a self inflicted hydrogen bomb detonation. The ramifications for climate will last thousands of years. At a moment when we need to being all we can to reduce emissions, we have decided to declare climate change is a “hoax”. I weep for the young and future generations.

    Reply
    • Suzanne

       /  November 9, 2016

      Ryan…I am with you. I am in my 60’s and will be gone before the full cataclysm of this election occurs…but I truly believe..the best of what we were as a nation…is gone forever.
      The planet will not survive this election…I truly believe this right now..I hope I am wrong.
      In my state FL…the third party vote….again…gave the state to a Republican.

      I don’t know if i will be able to get out of bed this morning.

      Reply
    • Talking about self-inflicted hydrogen bomb detonations… could you guys from the USA inform how much power a president actually have there?

      For example:
      1. Can a USA president use nuclear weapons in a whim, or does he need to go through safety protocols before (like having declared war, confirmation from the Congress, etc)? Wish I could not ask this one.

      2. Can an USA president really zero the budget of climate change science (even NASA will go if that´s the case, I guess)? Doesn´t he need Congress back-up for that? From all the horrid promises of Trump, this one is what I fear most (ok, after the first one). The rest of the world can try to keep the fight against fossil fuels even if the USA´s comsumption goes up again, but doing so blindy will be almost impossible. And the USA is one of the scions of science in the world.

      3. How much control does an USA president have in the economy. I´m sure he can help the king´s friends (which I believe to be the Koch brothers and company, in this case), like all presidents in the world, but could he… outlaw Tesla, for example?

      And how did the Congress election go? Do Democrats, Green Party and Libertarians have enough of a vote to try to block the worst diatribes (for example, the Republicans tried to block Obamacare. They failed, but it seems that they stalled and modified the project a lot. Can that happen the other way around too, please?), or was the congress vote as bad as the presidential one?

      Sorry about those questions, and condolences about this election.

      Reply
      • 1. Nuke codes. The president has them. And as the leader of the armed forces he has the authority to launch a nuclear strike. However, he is surrounded by advisers and the lauch authority passes down a chain of command that could, conceivably, stand in the way of an unjust strike authorization.

        2. Climate budget zeroing. The Congress holds the purse strings. So reducing the climate budget to a null figure would require an act of legislature. However, the President holds veto power and he could, if he wanted, veto any bill that does not reduce climate funding to 0. This could be over-ridden by a 2/3 majority.

        3. Outlaw Tesla. The President doesn’t have the power to create laws. He could, however, produce a number of executive orders that make developing renewable energy in the U.S. more difficult.

        4. Composition of Congress. It looks like the Senate will be 48 Democratic / 52 Republican. This is a majority for republicans but not a strong one. The House of Representatives looks like it will have 195 Democrats and 239 Republicans. This is a pretty solid majority. Overall, it looks like republicans may have lost 2 seats in the Senate and 9 seats in the house. This slight retraction is in no way enough to counter the loss of the Presidency for Democrats. It also increases the likelihood that anti-climate, anti-renewables, anti-EPA, anti-environment legislature will sail through both houses on party line votes.

        5. The Supreme Court. We should be very clear that the Supreme Court has put Obama’s Clean Power Plan on hold. And now this policy is in great jeopardy. Anthony Scalia’s seat replacement, which by law should have already been filled by Obama, has been held captive by an obstructionist republican congress.

        The current combination of Trump and the present republican legislature also creates a high risk that a Constitutional crisis will occur. Both Trump and sitting republicans show very little regard for due process of law or the protection of citizen’s/human rights. Overturning Roe v Wade, the the great loss of protections to women’s rights, for example, becomes a very real possibility now. But this is just one of many examples. Various laws that increase the power of corporations vs human citizens are also now at risk of coming to the fore.

        So though American democracy has a good deal of checks and balances, we are up against a wall here.

        Reply
        • Thanks.

        • Mark in New England

           /  November 9, 2016

          An excellent synopsis of what we’re up against Robert. I’d love to read your ‘post-mortem’ of this dark development and what it portends for the future – and suggest a few ways we ordinary citizens can fight the worst that Trump throws at us. I know I haven’t posted here recently, but I’ve been following you like a hawk and am just devastated at the moment. I was sure Clinton would at least squeak out a victory. Your writing is a spark of light in the darkness. Thank you.

        • Hatrack

           /  November 10, 2016

          In addition, any nuclear launch order the the president gives must be seconded by a senior official, one who has been confirmed by the Senate. So, Secretary of Treasury, Defense, Agriculture (hey, it’s possible!), head of the CIA, etc.

          If they feel that the president isn’t launching in a “rational” manner (in this context, that’s crazy, but so it goes) or out of pique or while out of their mind, the second can countermand, and the launch doesn’t take place. Unlikely, but possible, and the kind of thing that could bring down a president.

        • Hi Umbrios-

          Sad days. Crazy days, huh?

          Apparently the President requires the consent some high official, most often the Secretary of Defense, I think, to launch nuclear weapons. On the other hand, the President appoints the Secretary of Defense, with the advice and consent of the Senate.

          If a three-fifths majority of the Senate is not obtained to confirm the appointment, a filibuster is possible. In a filibuster, a Senator or group of Senators can just keep talking as long as they want, to block a Presidential appointment. I’m not sure how long a filibuster to block the appointment of a Secretary of Defense could hold out.

          https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Appointments_Clause

          In this case, since the Republicans control the Senate, Trump can likely get anyone he wants as Secretary of Defense, I think.

  33. entropicman

     /  November 9, 2016

    Victoria put this Carl Sagan quote on Twitter.

    “we slide, almost without noticing, back into superstition & darkness.”

    Reply
  34. Nancy

     /  November 9, 2016

    We are doomed. Before this election, I was doubtful we as a human race would continue, but now I am certain. We are doomed. And goddam Americans deserve everything they get for electing this man.

    Reply
    • Suzanne

       /  November 9, 2016

      Hate and ignorance won. I have never been more ashamed in my life of this nation..

      Reply
      • Nancy

         /  November 9, 2016

        Suzanne, it is shocking to know the deplorables enjoy being ignorant, wearing their ignorance like a badge of honor.

        I am waiting to hear what Bill McKibben has to say on how we move forward. It will be an uphill climb because Trump will try to do as much damage as possible in the early months.

        Reply
        • Suzanne

           /  November 9, 2016

          Nancy,
          I will stay engaged…but I just don’t see how we move forward when a majority in this country ….literally…embrace their ignorance and greed. Yes greed, one of the biggest reasons we are in this CC mess. It will be interesting to see how all those millions of Entitled Americans who voted for the Lunatic feel when the markets crash..and we are back into a recession. They only value their money…and nothing else. Trust me, I have many in my orbit who voted for him for just that reason…with no regard for anything else. I have talked and pleaded with them for years about the dangers of CC and they just don’t care or don’t believe it….I live in Florida where we are literally seeing the effects..and yet look how my state voted. I am sick with despair and I think many many relationships in this country may be forever severed.

      • John S

         /  November 9, 2016

        Hey Suzanne it is not just your nation. This is a widespread affliction of neo-lib fossil fuel nations.

        Reply
      • No-one deserves what is coming. Even the poor fools who voted for it.

        Reply
    • I don’t think it helps to paint folks with such a broad brush. I live in a small town that is 99.9% white, and Hillary won here, 1,982 votes to 191 for Trump. Trump voters and supporters may indeed get what they deserve, but the majority of Americans (at this point, I’m pretty sure Hillary will win the popular vote) do not.

      Reply
  35. Genomik

     /  November 9, 2016

    3 thoughts:
    1) I’m really pissed off at all my friends on the left who hated Hillary and were 3rd party voters. I know a lot of you hate her but as I’ve said to my friends, it’s the World Series, two teams, pick one!
    2) Trump inherits a cluster frack oh problems. A massive debt, 6 complex wars, Korean Elvis, Putin, etc. This is what Hillary got accused of being a warmonger for by 1)! However GOP might just get a boner over these but who knows.
    3) going forward tech is moving exponentially so who knows what new tech is responsible

    Reply
    • Please look at the 3rd and 4th party vote and ask yourself, did votes for Gary Johnson or Jill Stein cost the dems this election?

      Reply
      • In states that mattered — yes. Not to mention the fact that the division promoted by the 3rd party races served to sap energy and enthusiasm in a way that critically harmed our chances. Furthermore, I can’t count the number of times I had ‘Bernie supporters’ attacking Hillary while Bernie was out there campaigning for her. He knew the risks. Why didn’t his supporters listen? And to be very clear — I am a Bernie supporter.

        But this is all over now and we have to deal with the mess. Recriminations aren’t going to help anyone.

        Reply
        • Suzanne

           /  November 9, 2016

          It sure hurt us here in Florida:
          In Florida, the U.S.’s joint third-largest state in terms of electoral college votes (it has 29), and the country’s largest swing state, the gap between the Republican and the Democratic nominee was 128,863 votes. Johnson alone took 204,854 votes. (Stein secured 63,664).

    • Have to agree on third parties. As I said here a while back (though I think I’ve refined the language a bit since): If Trump wins, it’s on everyone who failed to vote for the one candidate who had a chance to defeat him. No alibis, no excuses.

      Reply
  36. Ailsa

     /  November 9, 2016

    An argument I saw often on social media for voting 3rd party, particularly Stein over Clinton, was to get a 5% share which would get the Greens funding. As a UK person, I don’t fully understand this. Anyone care to enlighten? And did they get the magic 5%?

    Reply
    • No, Jill Stein and the Greens got a tiny number of votes. Libertarians and Greens got about 4.8% of the vote this cycle which is more than normal. Normal is about 1.5%. Most of the 4.8% is Libertarian votes for Gary Johnson. These votes skew R rather than D in a reasonable analysis. US politics is dominated by the two major parties, we don’t have any kind of representational participation by minor parties, so a really great election cycle for a “third” party might mean 6 to 8% of the popular vote yielding zero seats in Congress, but the chance of more public campaign matching funds in subsequent election cycles with the hope of building numbers and political power over several election cycles. We have not seen this growth in third party power actually happen, it is theoretical at this point.

      Reply
      • Ailsa

         /  November 9, 2016

        Thank you SBMike for your explanation. My word, what a pickle we all find ourselves in. Stein seemed to make to sense to me, from all the way over here. Dunno though, haven’t been able to really look at her in depth. We have what might be the equivalent – Caroline Lucas, who is a strong Green voice of sanity in the UK parliament.

        Reply
      • Suzanne

         /  November 9, 2016

        Third party candidates Johnson and Stein did hurt us in Florida..
        In Florida, the U.S.’s joint third-largest state in terms of electoral college votes (it has 29), and the country’s largest swing state, the gap between the Republican and the Democratic nominee was 128,863 votes. Johnson alone took 204,854 votes. (Stein secured 63,664).

        Third party voting in swing states like Florida…is harmful and wasted. Like it or not…our system is based on a binary political system…and voting third party might make you feel better but it is damaging..IMO.

        Reply
        • Ailsa

           /  November 9, 2016

          I’m still learning about the US political system.

          Here in UK, Lucas is of course outside the classic 2 party system, but “In May 2010, Lucas was elected as the first Green MP to Westminster with a majority of 1,252. As well as being the first Green MP, Caroline Lucas was also the first woman to be elected as an MP for Brighton.” (from wikepedia) – she represents the area of Brighton Pavilion.

          It’s a start, and a great one, since she is incredibly well-informed, articulate, and hard-working. Could this possibly have an analogy in USA?

        • Maybe. MHO is that trying to take over the Democratic Party by competing in, and winning, primary elections is an easier way to go. Third parties always inherently involve the risk of splitting the liberal vote and handing elections to conservatives (and they don’t need any help). Here in Vermont, we have a third party because the Democrats are not liberal enough🙂, but after some ill feeling and a few elections, the situation has settled into a tacit agreement where Progs (Progressives) typically run in primaries and don’t contest in the general if they lose. In return, the Democrats typically don’t nominate serious candidates against a proven Progressive vote getter, which is why we have Bernie. We haven’t had a serious fight between these two allied groups for several election cycles now, and it’s allowed us to be very successful.

        • Ailsa

           /  November 9, 2016

          Thanks climatehawk – so if a progressive (can I read this as a Green?) wins a primary, then do they get to a seat in the House/Senate and have a voice in votes and such? Sorry to show such lamentable ignorance!

        • Oh, no problem, I don’t know squat about other countries’ political systems, except for understanding the parliamentary system in broadly generic terms.

          If a progressive (yes, may well be a Green) wins a primary, they then become the Democratic candidate in the general election. This typically brings them lots of extra votes compared with running on a third-party ticket, but they still must find the right balance in appealing to the voters in order to win the general election and take office.

          In short, there are always two elections: 1) the party primary, in which voters select the party’s candidates, and 2) the general election, in which the candidates selected in the primary by each party compete to be elected to office.

          I hope that helps. It’s important to understand that in the U.S., there is no “proportional”-style system–in each electoral district, a candidate must win a plurality of the votes to be elected to office. If Greens run in every district in our state, for example, and get 5% in every district, they get exactly zero seats.

  37. Abrupt. Political Climate. Change (Abrupt Political Climate Change).

    Reply
  38. 12volt dan

     /  November 9, 2016
    Reply
  39. Robert in New Orleans

     /  November 9, 2016

    I am of course disappointed by results of the election, but I am not surprised as Ms. Clinton was a deeply flawed candidate and who in the end could not arouse enough support to make a difference. If she had taken responsibility for the email issue in the beginning and admitted fault circumstances might have been different. I honestly believe in the end that many voters saw her as untrustworthy.

    Remember in politics as in everything else: Anything is possible, but the real question is it probable?

    Elizabeth Warren 2020??

    Reply
    • 2020 will be too late. The Democrats have two years to repudiate the centrist neoliberal agenda that has brought directly to this point, and find congressional candidates that can shape policy for the future.

      Reply
    • DJ LX

       /  November 9, 2016

      I agree regarding the email issue, in retrospect it would have been better if Clinton had immediately handed over all the emails on her personal server rather than sorting through them deciding what to keep and what to permanently delete. This gave the appearance that she had something to hide and was uslng her personal email server in order to evade public records laws. In politics appearances matter, and for Clinton, who the public already perceived as untrustworthy, the email issue prooved to be fatal.

      Grump’s presidency will be an unmittigated disater. I’d be surprised if he even makes it through the four-year term without getting impeached or quiting. Elizabeth Warren and a motivated populace wait in the wings to clean this mess up.

      Let’s keep up the pressure on *all* politicians and advocate for a fee and dividend on CO2 emmissions.

      Reply
    • I think we need to focus on turning the legislature around as fast as possible. That’s really our best first hope. Warren 2020 would be great and an excellent repudiation of Trump. But we need to move before then. In fact, we should probably be looking at our options for halting harmful republican-based legislation in the current congress.

      Reply
      • It is, but very unlikely to happen before 2020.

        On that note, it says here that Obama will be supporting former Attorney General Eric Holder, who is leading a “new group aimed at helping Democrats win redistricting fights in 2020.” I’d urge U.S. residents to give whatever support you can to this effort.

        http://www.nytimes.com/2016/10/24/us/obama-assists-150-state-candidates-targeting-gops-grip-on-legislatures.html

        Looks as though it may be called the National Democratic Redistricting Committee, but no website yet.

        Reply
        • I don’t know. Now that we’re in opposition, we have an edge in the midterm races. Especially if Trump steps in it.

        • Not really. The Dems have a 50-seat wall to whittle away at in the House and they’ll be starting down 2 seats in the Senate with friggin 23 seats up for grabs, a big portion in red states and only 8 repub seats up for grabs. Even with a repeat performance in 2018 of the epic shutout Rs got tonight in the Senate, they STILL wouldn’t get enough to take control. This is part of the reason why last night was so bad. It’s almost assuredly sealed us into 4 years of straight control by Republicans.

        • Historically, it’s very rare that a single party maintains power over both the Executive and the Legislative for so long. Despite the numbers, the historical trend is on our side. Even moreso if Trump implements the policies he’s proposing. If the Rs go soft, then they have a better shot. But I doubt that will happen.

  40. nwkilt

     /  November 9, 2016

    Bruce Cockburn, Maybe The Poet

    Reply
  41. Robert in New Orleans

     /  November 9, 2016

    Welcome to Planet Trump AKA An Express Elevator to Hell:

    Reply
  42. John McCormick

     /  November 9, 2016

    A headline from an energy news wire:

    “Millennials are fairly unmoved in key presidential and Senate battleground states, according to early turnout data compiled by the group NextGen Climate.”

    WE have to understand how we are failing to reach millennials. Global warming is their issue and that is a pitiful admission. They did not cause 408 ppm CO2, They own the consequences.

    It is time we had an honest intergenerational conversation about the known hazards of adding more heat to the oceans. Tell them where the trend lines are taking us.

    A newborn will become a parent in 22 years and a grand parent in 44 years. At 3 ppm/yr increase that would be an additional 132 ppm and a total concentration of 536 ppm.

    The reality of constant warming increase will eventually end procreation. When will civilization be the last generation to raise a family?

    Reply
  43. utoutback

     /  November 9, 2016

    Perhaps I’m dreaming….
    But, now that they are no longer the party of total opposition the Republicans are actually going to have to govern (if they can remember how that works) and everything that happens is going to be on them. The anger that elected Trump has not gone away and the masses that voted for him will be expecting this will be the greatest and most successful, really really better than any other time in the history of America or the world and with my (oops!) Trump’s leadership all their dreams will be fulfilled.
    This is going to be really interesting with Rudy, Newt, Chris and The Donald’s billionaire buddies trying to run the show.
    Still – our climate agenda is a shambles.

    Reply
  44. Insights from Glenn Greenwald:

    Democrats, Trump, and the Ongoing, Dangerous Refusal to Learn the Lesson of Brexit

    For many years, the U.S. — like the U.K. and other western nations — has embarked on a course that virtually guaranteed a collapse of elite authority and internal implosion. From the invasion of Iraq to the 2008 financial crisis to the all-consuming framework of prisons and endless wars, societal benefits have been directed almost exclusively to the very elite institutions most responsible for failure at the expense of everyone else.

    It was only a matter of time before instability, backlash and disruption resulted. Both Brexit and Trump unmistakably signal its arrival. The only question is whether those two cataclysmic events will be the peak of this process, or just the beginning. And that, in turn, will be determined by whether their crucial lessons are learned — truly internalized — or ignored in favor of self-exonerating campaigns to blame everyone else.

    https://theintercept.com/2016/11/09/democrats-trump-and-the-ongoing-dangerous-refusal-to-learn-the-lesson-of-brexit/

    Reply
  45. June

     /  November 9, 2016

    I don’t know how to embed videos, but the link below is to a video by Bruce Cockburn performing “Call it Democracy”. He wrote it in 1985, during the Reagan years, and it is just as relevant today (unfortunately). The video quality isn’t great but it has the lyrics subtitled, and they are extremely powerful.

    Reply
    • June

       /  November 9, 2016

      Hey, it worked!

      Reply
      • Suzanne

         /  November 9, 2016

        Thanks June…Just so sad that is all still applies 31 years later. I try to stay optimistic and look to the “best” in each of us…but this election has created an existential crisis for me. I knew some of my One Percenter family members would “greedily” vote for Trump.
        But when I had two Democrat friends either do third party or leave the top spot blank…it has shook me more than I thought possible. We do not have the luxury of a “purist” vote in such divided times…especially when you live in a swing state like I and they do. I am afraid I don’t know yet how I can go forward with a friendship with them. Hopefully time will heal these feelings.

        I am quite lost today. Doing my best not to despair. On a very personal note, I am particularly worried for my Lesbian daughter who lives in red N.C…and who accosted in a public restroom after the McCrory “bathroom wars”. She hasn’t stepped into a public restroom since. I just worry about things like that escalating…since the racists and haters have been given the power. Doing my best not to dwell on that…but she is my baby..and that’s Mothers do best…worry.

        Reply
        • June

           /  November 9, 2016

          I understand, Suzanne. I feel even worse than I did in 2000. In a few days I hope I will be able to summon the energy to start fighting again, but right now I’m just incredulous, disillusioned, sad and angry. I’m not as optimistic as some. The people that bought into Trump’s lies and shrugged off his bigotry and misogyny will not blame him when things start going off the rails. Trump will just blame Obama, the Democrats, the progressives, minorities, anybody but himself and the Republicans (maybe even some Republicans if they don’ t go along with him), and they will be convinced. The man can’t put a coherent sentence together, but that doesn’t matter. He has carte blanche to do what he wants, and he is not going to change after he gets in office. A lifelong narcissist doesn’t suddenly develop compassion or the desire to listen to other opinions.

  46. coloradobob

     /  November 9, 2016

    Lone Wati was right, Hell did come to breakfast.

    Reply
  47. coloradobob

     /  November 9, 2016

    5 hours old –
    Hillary Clinton surpasses Donald Trump in popular vote total

    http://www.upi.com/Top_News/US/2016/11/09/Hillary-Clinton-surpasses-Donald-Trump-in-popular-vote-total/3271478708980/

    Reply
    • Suzanne

       /  November 9, 2016

      The only silver lining I can find in this horror show..and it isn’t much…but at least the Lunatic did not get a mandate. He lost the popular vote..and did not get out a blowout in the EC.
      I am just looking to hang on to something even if it is pretty lame.

      Reply
    • Thanks for this, Bob.

      Reply
  48. Ailsa

     /  November 9, 2016

    Musical interlude from the wonderful Tom Robinson, from the early 1990’s in UK…

    Reply
  49. Following the UK vote and the US vote, Brexit and Trump were both unexpected wins. Hopefully he will be a one term president, he is rather old. His anti science views are certainly an existential risk to the entire planet. He can not stop the rising seas, (already happening in Florida with every king tide) any more than King Canute could stop the tide from coming in one thousand years ago.
    After listening to some of his acceptance speech, obviously he will be the most “handled” president ever, no off the cuff remarks there.Who his handlers and advisers will be is the worry so is Trump’s racism, xenophobia, misogyny, and climate denial.

    Reply
  50. But they did vote for the wrong sort of Lizard and this may be an explanation http://evonomics.com/lakoff-no-one-knows-why-trump-is-winning
    It’s an interesting idea – it resonated with me because more and more I’ve felt there are two tribes of humans – people like me (ha ha) by which I mean those with a liberal tolerant inclusive world view who care about climate change, explotation,poverty refugess etc and the other tribe which is fearful, racis,t xenophobic and doesn’t care about or belive in issues like climate change. If you like those with an open meme versus those with a closed meme world view. Depressing that the closed meme seems to be in the ascendancy at the moment.

    Reply
  51. oale

     /  November 11, 2016

    Apparently Floridans decided they can do without Miami.

    Reply

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