Yesterday the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals decided that the Department of the Interior violated the law when it opened almost 30 million acres of the outer continental shelf in the Chukchi Sea off the coast of Alaska to oil and gas drilling.
Icebergs in the high Arctic. Photo credit: Wikimedia
The court concluded the Department’s estimate of one billion barrels of recoverable oil under the frozen Arctic ocean was “chosen arbitrarily” and that the Interior Department “based its decision on inadequate information about the amount of oil to be produced pursuant to the lease sale.”
It went on to say that the agency had analyzed “only the best case scenario for environmental harm, assuming oil development,” and that this analysis “skews the data toward fewer environmental impacts, and thus impedes a full and fair discussion of the potential effects of the project.”
A coalition of more than fifteen Alaska Native and environmental groups including Earthjustice, Center for Biological Diversity and Alaska Wilderness League, took the case following the George W. Bush Administration’s 2008 sale, only to have it struck down in federal court. In 2011, the Obama Administration moved it forward again, but the coalition swiftly challenged it through the courts.
“Drilling for oil in the Chukchi Sea poses an enormous risk to the region’s people and wildlife,” said Greenpeace Arctic Campaign Leader Gustavo Ampugnani. “It locks us into a dangerous and dirty fossil fuel future, and it pushes us far closer to global climate catastrophe and the imminent hazards of extreme weather.”
The verdict will hamper Shell’s plans in the Arctic, and comes just a week after the company issued a profit warning variously described as “disastrous” and “dreadful” in the financial press.
“Shell—one of the world’s largest companies—has so far spent $5 billion dollars on this perilous Arctic folly,” said Ampugnani. “As the whole world watched, their bold Arctic expedition in 2012 became a global laughing stock, as giant rigs broke free from their moorings and beached on Alaskan shores, dire storm warnings were ignored, and multiple health, safety and environmental regulations were breached.”
“This decision should give President Obama pause to reconsider the dangerous path he’s heading down by opening up the precious Arctic to rapacious oil giants,” Ampugnani continued. “If he wants to live up to his inspiring words on tackling climate change and protecting America’s stunning natural environment for future generations, he should put an end to this dangerous oil rush to the ends of the earth.”
HELP! make operation #PRISMBREAK go viral and contribute to what aims to be history’s largest ever direct action against the U.S. Govt. by SPAMMING their surveillance program known as PRISM.
Operation #PRISMBREAK: is a political jamming, direct action targeting the PRISM surveillance program. It is an artivist conceived initiative that is design to be highly disruptive yet quick and easy for those who value civil liberties to contribute toward.
OBJECTIVE: To overwhelm and spam PRISM’s search results for terms deemed “items of interest” (IOI) contained within our personal electronic communications with false flag results.
HOW: Simply copy, paste and save the most popular keywords and Items Of Interest (listed below), that are actively being sought by the PRISM program, into the signature of your email so that all future communications sent from your account contribute to the spamming of the surveillance system.
Let us not sit idly on the laurels of those who gave their lives for our freedoms. #bradleymanning#edwardsnowden #julianassange and take meaningful action with just a couple of clicks!
SHARE, LIKE and SPREAD THE KEYWORDS! Let’s send a clear message to those who “hate our freedoms” that we the people will defend ourselves effectively against their oppressive action through mass coordination and unity. This will only work effectively if millions unite!
Let’s not allow #GANGNAMSTYLE to be the barometer of our social consciousness.
Here’s a gonzo communique from deep inside the Worldwide Wave…
We’ve been having a wild time gearing up for the Worldwide Wave of Action. Starting next week we will send out email newsletters three times a week. Despite the outrageously ambitious task and incredible amount of work it takes to help organize a decentralized campaign on a global scale, it’s been a blast. It’s already turning into a punk rock show, held at the Vatican. In this early stage, we are vibrating on low and high frequencies over here, covering the full spectrum of consciousness. On one wavelength, there are co-conspiring rebels with a cause dedicated to exposing and non-violently overthrowing the old corrupted tyrannical regime. On others, we have deep spirituality and builders of the new.
How can we sum up the experience? Hmm… Imagine if Pope Francis became the new lead singer of Rage Against the Machine. Imagine if Sid Vicious had a baby with Mother Teresa. Imagine if the Dalai Lama had babies with Pussy Riot, without having sex; like the Dalai Lama just meditated on it and the whole band mysteriously got knocked up. Yes, strange scenes inside the Gaian mind. Once you tap into this madly divine realm, there is no turning back. Someone slipped Ayahuasca into the water at #www’s undisclosed locations. The rabbit done died and the hole runs deep, we’re being sucked up into a vortex. The Matrix has been exited, it’s in the rearview. We are breaking on through, we are multi-dimensional. Chief Mojo is rising. In the Name of the Mother, she is Idle No More and in Transition. She’s Fighting For the Future and wants to Unify humanity. She’s Anonymously Occupying multiple realms, at once. She’s a coalition of the willing, setting off tremors in the bottom of the ocean. You can feel it blowin’ in the wind. A worldwide wave is a-comin’.
Suffice to say, it’s quite the confluence of forces over here. We will do our best to make sense of it. We will decipher, interpret, translate, summon, conjure up and radiate, in a mad wicked beautiful spiraling dance of love and compassion. We will align these forces, like Jackson Pollock put it to the canvas.
Many people have different opinions on what the Worldwide Wave means to them, most all having to do with the emergence of a new paradigm. From my perspective, it feels like being tapped into some kind of divine mystical flow.
Organizer addressing the crowd after the video, encouraging them to attend the StopWatching.US rally in Washington, DC on the anniversary of the Patriot Act, October 26th. (Photo credit: Kyle Depew, The Illuminator)
Last night, Fight for the Future, Demand Progress, The Illuminator, and Restore the Fourth NYC teamed up for a guerrilla screening of Fight for the Future’s new video about the NSA, narrated by Evangeline Lilly. I was on hand with my camera to document the occasion. It was a light-hearted affair given the subject matter, with an abundance of popcorn and a revelrous vibe.
Surprisingly, the New York City Police Department didn’t bust the party. If there were some plain clothes officers in the crowd, perhaps they learned a little something about their government.
Check out both documentary above and footage from the public projection below. Watch for the clip of The Dude in The Big Lebowski saying, “New shit has come to light,” which rather perfectly encapsulates Edward Snowden’s NSA revelations.
A handful of studies have shown that those who download music illegally actually buy more through legal channels. But why? Are pirates really this generous or could it be that this is just a side-effect of the failing music industry?
In the past we’ve documented studies that showed how the majority of artists sell more music thanks to piracy and that those who download (more) also buy more. Last week another study was added to this ever growing list, arguing that pirates are 10 times more likely to buy music than those who don’t.
So why do pirates buy more music? The simplest explanation for this finding might be that people who are not interested in music don’t have the need to pirate or buy it. I have to agree that it’s not the the sexiest, most controversial or inspiring answer, but it does tell us something about the core of the piracy ‘problem’.
The real reason is in fact very simple. The true music enthusiasts simply want to consume, sample and discover as much new music as they possibly can, and the most straightforward and convenient way to do this is through file-sharing networks. Music pirates are just regular consumers really, and they love music just as much as anyone else.
Music fans share more.
Although I personally believe that the ability to sample music through file-sharing has a positive effect on music sales, much of the correlation between piracy and sales is simply caused by a third factor – a passion for music. This is one of the main reasons why most users of music oriented BitTorrent sites love an initiative such as Spotify where they have access to one of the largest music libraries online.
Although piracy can breed consumers, it’s generally happens the other way around. The Internet has freed music and the music labels’ greed and abuse of copyright is the only barrier that stands between the artists and millions of potential fans. Creative business models where consumers have instant access to unprotected and high quality music are the future.
The labels of course fail to see this all too obvious connection and continue to exploit their acquired (copy)rights.They would rather pump yet more millions into overpaid pro-copyright lobbyists and expensive lawyers trying to keep their outdated business model alive – the model where the artist gets 1 to 10% of the total music sales while the labels are filling their pockets. No wonder the passionate music fans flee to BitTorrent.
What we can learn from the studies is that true music fans buy and pirate more music. The labels are fighting against those who generate a large chunk – perhaps even the largest – of their yearly revenue. The labels should understand that piracy is merely a signal that they are on the wrong track.
The Internet makes it possible to offer unlimited access to music cheaply with virtually no production and distribution costs. Unlimited access is exactly what most consumers want. It’s an opportunity not a threat.