Fri 30 Jan 2009
Update! Everything has been quite on the Please Do These Things for the Environment front for a little while: not a lot of requests or demands from our in-box. That is, until this week, when everyone went CRAZY!
People been demanding all kinds of stuff from us, but the important one seems to be all surrounding the Bailout Package. Now, as we’re sure you all know, everyone is clamoring to get a piece of the big dollars Uncle Sam is about to be throwing around. And on Wednesday, the Obama Package (hehe) got past the House (along VERY partisan lines) and is on the Senate. Well, Green-For-All, 1Sky and WeCanChange are all suggesting that the package contains a lot of cash for the green-collar based plans. If you are interested in some really interesting reading (watch out: time wormhole!) the we recommend scrolling through both the stimulus bill as posted here and some of the comments sections. We aren’t really sure if the Bailout is popular on the left because Obama likes it, or because it’s actually a good Bill, and we aren’t sure if it was unpopular with House Republicans for the same reasons. It doesn’t seem like it’s all that different then what the Bush crew was proposing, yet the battle lines have totally redrawn. Balls to that.
To add our own voice to the hew and cry, the only thing that we would point out is that Republicans seem to have very short memories when it comes to how these things happened and how the economic crisis came about. To say that a Bailout package that gives money directly to industries instead of lowering taxes is “more of the same” or “more of the Liberal silver spoon elite” seems to ignore the fact that deregulation and giving money back to the taxpayers is what got us into this mess. Turns out that giving a tax credit means that poor folk who need it get a few bucks, and rich folk who don’t want to spend it get a lot of bucks. That’s how it works in a vaguely progressive tax system. Also: we don’t like Kool-aid! We were JUST having a conversation last night that the Kool-aid man sort of creeps us out! Please stop accusing us drinking Kool-aid!
But we digress.
The point of all this is that the stimulus bill might be rife with problems, or it might be pretty good. We aren’t nearly smart enough to know. But the Green-Collar economy lobby is strongly behind this Bill, and that’s the point of this site, ain’t it?
He makes some good points (sorry that its dated to before Al testified before Congress. Old news now. The concern has become the Senate, where a Democratic Majority can not carry the weight) and because it’s Al Gore, we clicked on this link and asked our Senators to support the stimulus. But, then again, they are democrats anyway, so we aren’t that worried who’s side they are on.
(interesting side note: the different green mailing lists we are on are starting to compete for time and compete for numbers. One crew offers that they contacted senators “more then 24,000 times!” other are nearing 40K. We wonder how much lobbying power each group can claim to muster, and we wonder how much of that depends on which form letter we choose to send to our senators when we click that button. Also, can you imagine if the New Senator from NY, Gillibrand, DIDN’T vote for the package? Man, would Paterson come off looking like a dick!)
UPDATE: VAN JONES THINKS I AM AWESOME! HE SAYS:
Here are three things we think you’ll be especially excited about in President Obama’s economic recovery plan:
1. GREEN JOBS ACT: $500 Million
In 2007, Green For All and our allies got the Green Jobs Act signed into law. The Act authorizes federal support for green-collar job-training programs. But last year, Congress failed to appropriate the money. Now, President Obama and the House want to invest $500 million in these programs. (YAY!) (Editor note: the YAY was Van Jones, not me!)
But the Senate wants to create a grant program at half that amount, and divide this smaller pie into smaller pieces – by directing the funds to train workers in various industries (not just green ones). (Boo!)
With the support of the President and the House, full funding for the Green Jobs Act finally is within sight. But we need your help to move the Senate.
2. WEATHERIZATION: $6.2 Billion
President Obama’s recovery package contains the largest weatherization investment in history, as well as funding for a number of other programs that will increase the energy efficiency of America’s buildings. Upgrading our buildings so that they protect us better from the weather means we can spend less energy heating and cooling them.
This is the single biggest thing we can do right now to stop global warming. Nothing in the country uses as much energy as our buildings – not even our transportation. And weatherizing won’t just save lots of energy and reduce greenhouse gases – it will also create a ton of new green-collar jobs!
3. DOUBLING RENEWABLE ENERGY
Efficiency is only part of the solution. We also need to replace the fossil fuels we’re burning with renewable energy. The recovery plan is part of that, with plans to double our capacity to generate renewable energy in just three years. Another big job engine!
If you wanted to contrivbute to Van Jones’ power to Lobby Congress (instead of Al’s) you would do that here.
Who wrote this one? TheAmericanGreen - The founding member of the American Green institute, and a New York based producer and writer hoping to make the jump from "freelancer" to "documentary producer". Read more from this author