Open thread for night owls: Two big differences among Democratic presidential candidates on climate

Zoya Teirstein at Grist writes—Here’s where all the official Democratic presidential candidates stand on climate:

So far, 18 Democrats have announced bids to tussle with Donald Trump for the presidency in 2020, with more expected to throw their caps in the ring. In such a crowded field, it’s hard to decipher where each candidate stands on any issue, including climate change — a topic that was conspicuously absent in the 2016 election but appears will be front and center this time around. Luckily, The New York Times sent around a survey to each of the 18 declared Democratic candidates and got them all on the record about everything from a carbon tax to nuclear energy to renewables.

There are a few things that all of the candidates seem to agree on: The U.S. should stay in the Paris climate accord, reinstate President Obama’s climate legacy (which has suffered under Trump’s deregulation push), and invest in renewable energy. Some candidates said they would go even further in one or more of those issue areas, by adding their own flourishes to Obama’s Clean Power Plan or promising to work with the global community to strengthen the Paris pact.

Taking a look at where the candidates diverge yields a much more interesting analysis. Though there are many small distinctions between the 18 presidential hopefuls on climate policy, there are two issues where there is meaningful daylight between candidates. 

A carbon tax […]

Nuclear energy […] 


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“In keeping silent about evil, in burying it so deep within us that no sign of it appears on the surface, we are implanting it, and it will rise up a thousand fold in the future. When we neither punish nor reproach evildoers, we are not simply protecting their trivial old age, we are thereby ripping the foundations of justice from beneath new generations.”                 ~~Aleksandr I. Solzhenitsyn, The Gulag Archipelago 1918-1956 (1973) 



Watching Trump go through his self care routine of watching Fox tell him it’s ok it’s all ok it’s fine just fine is creepy and gross. Just take a bubble bath like a normal person, you freak.

— Kaili Joy Gray (@KailiJoy) April 18, 2019


On this date at Daily Kos in 2004—$4.5 Billion For Mercenaries In Iraq:

The New York Times has an extensive report on the scope, costs and problems of the military’s use of mercenaries in Iraq.

With every week of insurgency in a war zone with no front, these companies are becoming more deeply enmeshed in combat, in some cases all but obliterating distinctions between professional troops and private commandos. Company executives see a clear boundary between their defensive roles as protectors and the offensive operations of the military. But more and more, they give the appearance of private, for-profit militias—by several estimates, a force of roughly 20,000 on top of an American military presence of 130,000…

The price of this partnership is soaring. By some recent government estimates, security costs could claim up to 25 percent of the $18 billion budgeted for reconstruction, a huge and mostly unanticipated expense that could delay or force the cancellation of billions of dollars worth of projects to rebuild schools, water treatment plants, electric lines and oil refineries…

The authority initially estimated that security costs would eat up about 10 percent of the $18 billion in reconstruction money approved by Congress, said Capt. Bruce A. Cole of the Navy, a spokesman for the authority’s program management office.

But after months of sabotage and insurgency, some officials now say a much higher percentage will go to security companies that unblushingly charge $500 to $1,500 a day for their most skilled operators… 

On today’s Kagro in the Morning show: Come on. What do you think it’s about today? OK, well, Greg Dworkin did also have some polls. And some interesting analysis of the real “Kavanaugh effect,” (the opposite of what pundits and consultants said it would be). But then Armando came on, and well…

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