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Gibson writes: "It's obvious to anyone that both Democrat and Republican senators who reject the idea of climate change or remain silent on the issue are doing so to appeal to their sugar daddies who are writing campaign checks."

Students die-in at the White House protesting the Keystone XL pipeline. (photo: Kristina Banks)
Students die-in at the White House protesting the Keystone XL pipeline. (photo: Kristina Banks)

Climate Activism Works

By Carl Gibson, Reader Supported News

11 March 14


n Sunday, March 2, 398 people were arrested in front of the White House to demand that President Obama reject the Keystone pipeline. And less than two weeks later, nearly a third of the US Senate stayed up all night to talk about the necessity to take action on climate change. The #Up4Climate hashtag was a top nationally-trending topic on Twitter during the event. This is proof that the climate movement is making historic ground, and that climate activism works.

The "Up for Climate" session wasn't a filibuster, as no legislation was debated. But the marathon speech session aims to make climate change a mainstream issue in the national dialogue. Senators Barbara Boxer of California and Sheldon Whitehouse of Rhode Island led the session, which lasted until 9 a.m. Tuesday morning. Majority leader Harry Reid, progressive hero Bernie Sanders, and social media-savvy Cory Booker also participated.

Among those who didn't participate were Senate democrats sponsored by the oil and coal industry, like Mary Landrieu of Louisiana and Joe Manchin of West Virginia. Landrieu's campaign committee has received close to half a million dollars in campaign contributions from the oil and gas industry since 2009. In May 2013, Senator Landrieu sought to lift the Obama administration's ban on granting new oil drilling leases for BP, just 3 years after the oil company polluted Louisiana's water, killed its wildlife, and damaged the state's economy. Manchin has made his political career railing against the EPA's regulation of mountaintop removal mining, and has received over $1 million in campaign contributions from the mining and electric power industries.

Republican senators Mitch McConnell of Kentucky and James Inhofe of Oklahoma both scoffed at the "Up for Climate" speech-a-thon. McConnell told the Cincinnati Enquirer, "For everybody who thinks it's warming, I can find somebody who thinks it isn't." Inhofe wrote a book called "The Greatest Hoax," and recently said that "fewer and fewer" senators believe that climate change is happening and is man-made. McConnell and Inhofe are two of the most heavily-sponsored senators by the oil and gas industry – McConnell's campaign committee has received over $600,000 from the industry since 2009, and Inhofe has received over $300,000.

It's obvious to anyone that both Democrat and Republican senators who reject the idea of climate change or remain silent on the issue are doing so to appeal to their sugar daddies who are writing campaign checks. Senators like Landrieu, McConnell, Inhofe, and Manchin are scarlet politicians who have helped turn Washington into a brothel – the industry puts something in, and they put out.

Those who doubt climate science are shutting out the voices of a vast majority of the scientific community. We've had proof that human beings and the greenhouse gases emitted by our industries affect our atmosphere since 1896. And every major scientific institution that studies climate science agrees that our planet is warming, and that global warming is caused by human activity. Even a Koch Brothers-funded scientist who was paid to debunk climate change found that climate change is real and exacerbated by human behavior. Pitting climate scientists against oil industry-funded politicians isn't a "debate," but a denial-fest.

Other climate science deniers argue that we don't have the economic wherewithal to address climate change. But not acting now would have an even more devastating impact on our economy. Recent weather patterns are proving that the warming of our planet is happening at a rapid rate, making freak weather events more commonplace. Hurricane Sandy devastated New York City and New Jersey, costing the economy over $50 billion. January's polar vortex – caused by arctic air being pushed south due to the warming of polar ice caps – cost the economy $5 billion. Leaving this problem unaddressed will bankrupt us.

The "Up for Climate" speeches were proof that the recent climate activism sweeping the nation is being heard by Washington. But the climate movement isn't going away. Soon, the Earth Day to May Day days of action, sponsored by the Alliance for Global Justice, will sweep the country, putting thousands of people in the streets and raising national awareness about this growing problem. Solutions called for by the convergence of climate activists are full employment with community-based small business, worker-owned co-ops, small farms, and government jobs. The convergence is also calling on the government to switch to 100% renewable energy dependence by 2030, and making room for these new jobs in the budget by cutting the bloated Pentagon budget by at least 50 percent.

The coming midterm elections will be our opportunity to go from the streets to the ballot boxes, and to refuse to elect any politicians who don't promise to address climate change with concrete solutions. Our votes have to make a statement that the collective voice of the people will always win regardless of how much campaign money the oil companies give.

Carl Gibson, 26, is co-founder of US Uncut, a nationwide creative direct-action movement that mobilized tens of thousands of activists against corporate tax avoidance and budget cuts in the months leading up to the Occupy Wall Street movement. Carl and other US Uncut activists are featured in the documentary "We're Not Broke," which premiered at the 2012 Sundance Film Festival. He currently lives in Madison, Wisconsin. You can contact him at This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it , and follow him on twitter at @uncutCG.

Reader Supported News is the Publication of Origin for this work. Permission to republish is freely granted with credit and a link back to Reader Supported News. your social media marketing partner


A note of caution regarding our comment sections:

For months a stream of media reports have warned of coordinated propaganda efforts targeting political websites based in the U.S., particularly in the run-up to the 2016 presidential election.

We too were alarmed at the patterns we were, and still are, seeing. It is clear that the provocateurs are far more savvy, disciplined, and purposeful than anything we have ever experienced before.

It is also clear that we still have elements of the same activity in our article discussion forums at this time.

We have hosted and encouraged reader expression since the turn of the century. The comments of our readers are the most vibrant, best-used interactive feature at Reader Supported News. Accordingly, we are strongly resistant to interrupting those services.

It is, however, important to note that in all likelihood hardened operatives are attempting to shape the dialog our community seeks to engage in.

Adapt and overcome.

Marc Ash
Founder, Reader Supported News

-36 # brycenuc 2014-03-11 23:36
A huge falsehood promoted by the "warm mongers" is that 97 percent of scientists believe them. Another is that all climate skeptics are in the pay of big oil. There are several more in contention for the top spot among the many distortions and outright lies. Among these are the we could ever a achieve a runaway unstoppable global heat increase. The latest IPCC reoort (AR5) was devoted primarily to disguising the fact that all the IPCC temperature predictions that have come due have overestimated the true rise by factors ranging from 2 to 7. All this unforgivable nonsense is done to demonize the gas, carbon dioxide, that is essential to all life on earth. If it were merely a great waste of resources it would be bad enough, but the effort jeopardizes our energy future.
+12 # REDPILLED 2014-03-12 08:42
Read Storms of My Grandchildren by climate scientist James Hansen.

Denying the accelerating climate catastrophe and calling it "nonsense" won't make it go away.
+10 # bmiluski 2014-03-12 08:45
brycenuc....... I've asked all my republican climate change-denying friends to tell me what is the down-side of believing in global warming/climate change and non absolutely non of them have answered me. I wonder, can you? Can YOU tell me what the down-side is to believing in climate change and trying to do something about it?
0 # Billy Bob 2014-03-14 06:58
It's a GREAT question.

Because it puts them in the position of revealing their true motives. As I can see it, there are only 2 possible answers to this (and neither looks good for them):

1. They KNOW that it means the filthy sludge industry (oil, coal, gas) would have to be shrunk greatly (in fact coal and gas would be virtually non-existent). They LOVE the filthy sludge industry. It's what keeps the Republican Party so powerful.

2. They just wanna be dicks. Bill Maher pointed this one out first. The logic goes like this:

"Left-wingers want something and really believe it's true. They also have science on their side with proof. We hate left-wingers, and we hate science. Therefore, just for shits and giggles, lets be absolute assholes about it, even though we KNOW they're probably right. After all, we can't afford to give an inch, about ANYTHING - not even if we are clearly in the wrong.


On this thread,

#1 would refer to and MidwesTom (he owns a chemical company that works with the fracking industry).

#2 would refer to brycenuc, and Malcolm.


The reason you NEVER get a decent answer to your question is that, you can't expect them to actually tell you the truth.
-3 # Malcolm 2014-03-14 13:11
Liar, liar, pants on fire. I once said you were honest. Worst mistake I've ever made you DELIBERATELY misrepresent me, calling me "right wing", when you nknow damn well it's not true. I suspect you lie about others who don't parrot your clap trap. Apparently, you are so upset to know that there are actual liberals, progressives, and Democrats(!) who don't buy into you climate extremism that you just can't control your lying. You know better.

Shame on you, you liar.
-24 # 2014-03-12 04:15
If by "climate change activism works" you mean that it doesn't work, you'd be closer to accurate.

While the protesters were "stopping Keystone," Canada approved the application for Alberta oil to be shipped east to Ottawa, Montreal and the Maritimes via existing pipelines. The Alberta oil will be developed one way or the other since development is overwhelmingly popular in Alberta and Alberta controls the development process -- even liberal and green politicians in Alberta support oil extraction.

The only question is "Will the oil be piped to the US and refined and sold from here or will it be piped or trucked elsewhere where it will be refined and sold, often under less ecologically sound regulations?"

Lee Nason
New Bedford, Massachusetts
+24 # ritawalpoleague 2014-03-12 04:30
Sorry, Inason, but reality is that EPA remains 'useless as teets on a bull'. It has been that way since shortly after 'W's non-election election in 2000. The 'fossil foolers' cannot have regs. enforced well, now can they? Might just interfere with their greed and power over all addiction, now mightn't it?

Any pol. who supports fracking and/or pipelining is obviously bought off by the corrupt plus 1%ers. Only way to begin to straighten up the mess we and Mother Earth are so obviously in? In my humble opinion, pass effective laws at local, state, an national levels that insure we voters that each and every vote is actually/honest ly counted and tallied. No more Florida style 'who knows if my vote actually got counted' m.o.. Check out the documentary "The Uncounted" for verification of egregious election fraud, with no prosecution of those who directed said fraud, any more than any other getting out of endless warmode, ruination of climate via fracking, pipelining, and geo engineering, a.k.a. weather control via chem. trails and HAARP.

Talk about a mess from hell we are leaving our kids and future generations!
+1 # Kootenay Coyote 2014-03-12 08:54
Spelling note: that would be 'teats'.
+2 # ritawalpoleague 2014-03-14 11:02
Thanks, Kootenay Coyote. I will use the tradition English spelling, 'teats', whenever writing here in the U.S. of (greed and power) A.(ddiction). I have seen it spelled 'teets' when home in Ireland.
+1 # Malcolm 2014-03-14 14:05
Rita, I'm sorry that coyote decided to (mistakenly) focus on spelling, rather than content.

Not only is this a waste of time-I hope he won't do it again-but he's wrong. Both spellings are correct, although I'd say that, in order of popularity, it would line up like this : tits, teats teets
Any of them, when located on a bull, would imply uselessness quite well :)
+3 # REDPILLED 2014-03-12 08:43
No. The only question is "Will our grandchildren have a habitable planet?"
0 # jsluka 2014-03-12 13:40
Dear Redpilled - No matter how bad it gets, it will probably still be "habitable" for a few people in a few places, and for the 1%'ers wealthy enough to build and maintain small havens of "liveability," don't you think? Reminds me of "Dr Strangelove" and the "mineshaft gap" - Don't know why I'm getting the thumbs down - I wasn't saying this is good or anything, but some few people will survive almost anything; and don't y'all like the Dr Strangelove clip?!
+3 # bmiluski 2014-03-12 10:19
Logic seems to dictate that anything put into the ground such as pipes or wells will eventually degrade by natural or manmade causes, and anything those pipes carry other than fresh water will in time contaminate nearby aquifers, since there is no such thing as 100% indefinite containment. Ergo oil spills are inevitable and I would rather it happen on their land since its their oil which will be shipped to China. We wouldn't get a single drop of it, except for the thousands of gallons of it that are spilled onto our land and into our aquifiers..
+1 # Billy Bob 2014-03-14 07:00
You're right. Of course you lost her by arguing logic.
+12 # DavidThree 2014-03-12 05:01
To Brycenuc and others who are not sure about the scientific consensus on climate change - please check out NASA's climate change site at They have summarized surveys of climate scientists, and statements by the leading scientific organizations. I would ask that anyone contending that climate change is not happening provide similarly credible sources. I'll check back.
-2 # Billy Bob 2014-03-14 07:02
Malcolm doesn't believe in NASA. I've tried and he thinks he has a friend who knows more about science than NASA and his friend doesn't agree with the 97% consensus.
-1 # Malcolm 2014-03-14 13:17
I must be scaring the shit out of you, or you wouldn't keep stalking me. Thanks-it makes me understand that I'm a threat to your religious based fear mongering. Sometimes I think I'm wasting my time. Then I realize I must be at least opening the eyes of some folks who aren't part of the AGW mass hysteria.
+15 # Peter B. K. 2014-03-12 05:35
This article above is one more evidence that the worst corruption of democracy is when the few buy a vote/a decision against the will of the many. What a decay of time honored values. Where has the role model for fledgling new democracies gone? What happens now is that the once example for the world in implementation of democracy has become an example for all dictators on how to do away with the bothersome limitations of following the law, the ideal of legitimation of the government (legislative, justice and executive). We know that the majority is not always right, but corrupt decisions are always wrong. If we want to have a future we need to do away with money politics and put lobbying under strict control with heavy sanctions for abuse.
-9 # 2014-03-12 07:47
The LEFT is more RIGHT than they realize...
of course there is climate change (didn't it used to be global warming?!).

Anyway, as a conservative... .I agree, we should do something, but America should not have pay for the whole d##n process for the rest of the world. It's insanity !
+4 # REDPILLED 2014-03-12 08:49
The accelerating climate catastrophe knows no national borders. ALL nations are being affected now, and only cooperation among all of them has any slim hope of slowing down this catastrophe. Ideologies, party politics, and nationalist biases are all impediments to any chance of adapting to the dire consequences of this existential crisis, because it cannot be "solved".
-10 # MidwesTom 2014-03-12 10:09
By all accounts and studies; there is no acceleration; quite the contrary, warming is slowing, and has literally stopped for the past 12 to 15 years.
-5 # Malcolm 2014-03-12 20:56
Judging from the red you're getting, the warmistas are DISAPPOINTED that the warming has stopped for a while.

I am,too. I'll take warmer over another little ice age. Starvation, disease, and misery sucks!
+3 # Kootenay Coyote 2014-03-12 08:55
Why not (not that it's going to): the USA thinks it can dictate what it wants to the rest of the world, so why shouldn't it pay for the privilege/entit lement?
+2 # fredboy 2014-03-12 07:53
Texas is getting haboobs. See
+5 # hoodwinkednomore 2014-03-12 08:44
Disputing the fact of global warming and climate change at this point is like disputing the fact that radiation mutates genetic coding, thus causing cancer. Money in politics runs the show. This is also a fact which is precisely the reason that the Koch Bros., ALEC, et al, funnel millions and billions of dollars into our supposed democracy to further their own greedy, blood-thirsty, destructive agendas.

So to all you naysayers: Kindly put a well-oiled sock in your non-constructiv e, argumentative collective mouth, and breathe deep. Please. Let the authentic, actual problem-solvers save your asses too!
-4 # Malcolm 2014-03-12 20:59
Are you really a mom? Your comment sounds so much like something an abusive male would say.
-8 # MidwesTom 2014-03-12 10:06
This week's Economist magazine asks why virtually none of the predicted climate changes have occurred as projected. They even introduce the idea that particulate matter from China's many coal fired power plants may be reflecting heat from the earth, while our switch to natural gas, which produces literally no particulate matter may actually be hurting attempts to cool the planet.

The long and the short is; we do not understand how climate works, and we cannot verify that mankind has any significant effect on the climate.
+4 # Dust 2014-03-12 10:55
I'd ask what data and papers the Economist is referencing, first off. Then I'd ask them to define the term "virtually" (if that were in the article). Finally, I'd ask you to reference peer-reviewed scientific papers that support the idea that we cannot verify that human beings have any significant effect on climate. Perhaps we don't, but if no data or work exists to support the hypothesis, then it's little more than hyperbole.
+4 # bmiluski 2014-03-12 13:44
Again midwestTom....w hat is the down-side of believing in climate change?
-3 # Malcolm 2014-03-12 21:04
What's the down side of believing in the tooth fairy?

Fortunately, believers in the tooth fairy don't convert food into fuel, nor do they enrich themselves at the expense of the poor by making evil laws that tax "carbon".
-4 # Billy Bob 2014-03-14 07:09
Is it "evil" to tax something? I thought you didn't care about the oil industry? You seem to be really concerned about them here. Why?


Also, how rich are 97% of the Earth's scientists getting? It seems to be me that they're struggling for funding.

The last time I checked, the biggest companies on Earth were OIL companies.

...And, you're worried they might have to pay a little tax!


I think you finally revealed that you're just a big fat liar, Malcolm. Nobody, who claims what you claim about yourself, would give a crap about "those poor oil companies who might have to pay an evil tax".

Yet, you care about them more than you do about the 97% of the Earth's scientists who are worried about our children and grandchildren living on this planet and the fact that their food supply will be threatened.

bmiluski unmasked you for what you are, Malcolm, and there's nothing you can do to put that mask on again. From now on, we will ALWAYS know where your loyalty lies and what your true motivations are!

"Evil carbon tax, MY ASS!"
-2 # Malcolm 2014-03-14 13:21
No, YOU HAVE REVEALED that you are a lying fool, although it's certainly not the first time you've done so, . I don't give a flying fuck about the oil companies. I care about low income and middle income people being taxed in order to enrich the Al Gore set. AS YOU WELL KNOW!

But I've told you this over and over, ad nauseum. You either refuse to acknowledge it, or yor skull is three inches thick.

I'm tired if your lies and yor misrepresentati ons. So AMF.
-3 # Malcolm 2014-03-14 21:51
No, YOU HAVE REVEALED that you are a lying fool, although it's certainly not the first time you've done so, . I don't give a flying fuck about the oil companies. I care about low income and middle income people being taxed in order to enrich the Al Gore set. AS YOU WELL KNOW!

But I've told you this over and over, ad nauseum. You either refuse to acknowledge it, or yor skull is three inches thick.

I'm tired if your lies and your misrepresentati ons. So AMF.
-3 # bingers 2014-03-14 22:30
Good grief Malcolm, Gore tells more truth in one minute than you have in your entire posting history here. You might just feel more at home on a conservative site where lying is appreciated, and in fact demanded.
-2 # Malcolm 2014-03-14 23:02
I'm sure I'd "feel more at home" by not participating here, and subjecting myself to abuse by closed minded zealots. I don't need to "feel" at home.

Thank-you for your concern, though.

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