Starting The Week With A Grrrrrrrrrrr

I can tell already that it’s going to be a great week for snarky snippets and mini rants!  This afternoon’s post is one of each …


One man’s ignorance …

I have no idea what Joe Manchin’s game is, but he seems to be trying to be a one-man wrecking ball.  First, he refuses to so much as alter a single hair on the head of the filibuster, let alone kill that toxic animal.  Then he refuses to support the For the People Act that would protect our voting rights.  And now, he has set his sites on climate change … apparently hoping to help hasten the end of human and other lifeforms on Planet Earth.  Way to go, Joe!

You might never guess that Manchin is a member of the Democratic Party, nor that he is the Chairman of the Senate Energy Committee, given that much of the responsibility of that committee at this point is to find alternate sources of clean energy so that we can break our reliance on fossil fuels.  But then, Manchin does come from a state that is almost completely reliant on the coal industry to support its economy, so perhaps he’s been bought and paid for by the coal barons.

“I know there’s a change coming, OK?  But I’ve always been very, very cautious about this. I’m concerned that they’re setting a very aggressive timetable.”

The “very aggressive timetable” to which he refers is President Biden’s commitment to cut carbon emissions in half from 2005 levels by 2030.  Um … excuse me, Joe Manchin, but that is NOT what I call an aggressive timetable, especially given that we have known the problem for decades while we ignored it, happily driving our gas-guzzling SUVs, keeping our homes the perfect temperature, never bothering to turn off a light.  Rather like that old saying, “Eat, drink, and be merry, for tomorrow we die.”

Those of us who listen to the scientists, who understand that life on earth could very well be in its final stages if we don’t act quickly to start to reverse the damage we humans have done, know that we cannot delay.  Those of us with consciences care about what sort of world we are leaving behind for our grandchildren and their grandchildren.  And those of us with an IQ above 50 know that we can no longer dilly dally and play games with this.

Mr. Manchin … if you are so damn concerned about the people in your state and their economic future, then I suggest you get with the program and help them help themselves by promoting renewable energy, retraining coal miners in other jobs, rather than attempting to help the Republicans destroy our lives!  For your stupidity, your perfidy, I award you Filosofa’s double thumbs down!  👎👎


Guess how many?

Guess how many mass shootings occurred in the United States over the weekend?  No, not five … no, not seven … ELEVEN!  Yes, my friends, there were eleven mass shootings in this country from Friday evening thru Sunday night.  And the weekend before?  Ten mass shootings as defined by four or more people being shot.  To date, the U.S. has had 293 mass shootings since January 1st.

This weekend left 8 people dead and 49 injured, with at least 3 children among the victims.  Last weekend left 12 people dead. What the SAM HELL are people thinking???  Let’s take a closer look … make it just a bit more personal …

Friday

5 wounded in Minneapolis Friday night

A shooting in Minneapolis Friday night left five people wounded.

1 killed and three injured in Cincinnati, Ohio

A 16-year-old is dead and three other people were injured in a shooting Thursday night in Walnut Hills.

Saturday

2 dead, 4 injured in Baton Rouge, Louisiana

Two people were killed and four others were injured in a shooting early Saturday morning in Baton Rouge, Louisiana

1 dead, 4 injured in Anchorage, Alaska

Police in Alaska are investigating an early morning shooting that killed one person and injured four more in Anchorage Saturday.

4 injured in a shooting in Newark, New Jersey

No details

1 dead, at least 6 wounded in Oakland

One person was killed and at least six others were wounded in a shooting Saturday evening near Lake Merritt in Oakland, California.

Sunday

2 children among 8 injured in Dallas shooting

Eight people were shot, including a 15-year-old and 10-year-old, after a gunfight broke out between partygoers at two separate celebrations in Dallas just after midnight Sunday.

4 injured in Richmond, Virginia

Four people were injured in a quadruple shooting in Richmond, Virginia, early Sunday.

1 dead, 4 injured at Indiana Juneteenth celebration

One person was killed and four others were injured during a Juneteenth celebration in Granger, Indiana early Sunday morning.

1 killed, 4 injured at Juneteenth Celebration in Colorado

Police responded to a shopping mall parking lot in the Denver suburb of Aurora after receiving at least 50 calls reporting shots fired at a Juneteenth celebration just after 4 a.m.

1 killed and 3 others injured in Atlantic City, New Jersey

One person was killed and three others were wounded in a shooting Sunday evening in Atlantic City, New Jersey.

Am I the only person in this country who sees how utterly stupid it is for guns to be so easily obtained by any Tom, Dick or Harry?  NO, the 2nd Amendment to the United States Constitution does NOT give fools the right to own an assault rifle, it does NOT guarantee that fools can own an arsenal, and it does NOT give people the right to carry a gun around with them wherever they go!!!  Members of Congress and of the U.S. Supreme Court need to read the damn Constitution!  This is the stupidest interpretation of a part of the Constitution that I have EVER seen!  Get rid of the damn guns, get them out of the hands of people on the street!!!  But no, instead states are making it so easy to get a gun that before long you will see vending machines on street corners and in bars where for a $20 bill you can get a gun, and for another $10 you can get 10 rounds of ammo!  Grrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr.

A Handful of Mini-Rants

If we thought that with President Biden’s inauguration our troubles would disappear and peace would reign, we were dead wrong.  It appears to me that every Republican in any position of power, be it local, state, or federal, has taken an oath to make our lives a living hell and to destroy as much as possible of the nation.  If I could afford it, I would file a lawsuit against the Republican Party for costing me sleep, health, appetite and more!  As you read today’s snippets, you might conclude that I’m just a wee bit angry, but you’d be wrong.  I’m not a wee bit angry, I am livid.


I wonder if we could sell Texas to Mexico?

Republican Governor Greg Abbott of Texas is planning to spend the hard-earned tax dollars of the people of Texas and solicit donations from racists in order to ‘build that wall’ that the former guy kept touting but only actually built a few miles of.  Abbott learned from the earlier fiasco that there is no way in hell Mexico is going to pay for the wall, so instead he is going to commandeer taxpayer dollars to attempt to keep refugees out of his sorry state.  He said he would take $250 million from the state’s general revenue fund for a ‘down payment’ on his wall.  He also plans to coerce landowners on the border to allow the state to begin ‘immediate construction’ on their property.  In addition, he is asking for donations of both land and cash.  There are probably a few fools who will write him a check, but they’ll be throwing their money away, because Abbott’s wall isn’t going to happen (I hope).

Most people in the know say that Abbott’s proposed wall will meet its destiny, likely in the courts.  According to David Donatti, an attorney for the American Civil Liberties Union of Texas …

“If the governor wants to blow hot air on TV, he can do that. I truly don’t think he has thought this through. The governor is not a king. We have checks and balances in the state of Texas.”

As it happens, the governor does not have jurisdiction to enforce immigration laws, which are the sole responsibility of the federal government.  Apparently, Mr. Abbott needs to study the U.S. Constitution and his job description a bit longer.  He is up for re-election next year and … I would like to see him toppled, for he is an ass, but his likely primary opponent, Don Huffines, is just as big of an ass who also supports the idea of a wall, saying …

“The Biden Administration won’t secure our border, so Texas will.”

Sheesh, Republicans … do you not have anybody in your party with at least half a brain and a conscience???


Meanwhile …

Unlike the former guy, President Biden understands the seriousness of climate change and part of his campaign promise was to cut carbon emissions, cut back on fossil fuels, and expand renewable energy sources.  In way of keeping that promise, one of Biden’s first actions, his first week in office, was to issue a series of executive orders, one of which was to put a temporary ban on new oil and gas leasing on federal land.  Thumbs up, I say, for I ascribe to the mantra “Leave it in the ground”, even if it makes life a bit inconvenient for some, or … GASP … reduces the profits of the big oil, gas and coal companies.

But, alas, if something makes sense and is good for the environment, good for the people, you can count on the damn republicans to nix it.  In this case, Jeff Landry, the Republican attorney general of Louisiana and attorneys general from 12 other states, all Republicans, filed suit in March to lift the White House executive order.

Judge Doughty

On Tuesday, Judge Terry Alvin Doughty of the United States District Court for the Western District of Louisiana – a Trump appointee –  granted a preliminary injunction claiming that that the power to pause offshore oil and gas leases “lies solely with Congress” because it was the legislative branch that originally made federal lands and waters available for leasing.

DAMMIT Republicans!!!  The future of the human and many other species depends on switching to renewable energy, on leaving the damn fossil fuels where they belong … in the ground!  I don’t want your damned oil and frankly I don’t care if the CEOs of every fossil fuel corporation, who have been robbing us blind for decades now, all fall off of Wall Street and end up without a penny!  We have, for the first time in over four years, a president who cares about the future of the planet, who cares about We the People, our children and grandchildren, more than you the Rich Bastards!

As for Judge Terry Alvin Doughty … I wonder if he called the former guy to ask his advice on this one, for it reeks of trumpism.


Manchin’s “Compromise”

Senator Joe Manchin of West Virginia … you know, that state that has no economy and thrives on ignorance … already said he would not support the For the People Act that would ensure our voting rights, among other things.  Our right to vote … our only voice in our lives, our future … and Manchin doesn’t care enough to support it.  But wait …

Just this week, Manchin drafted a memo stating that he would be willing to compromise.  He would support at least two weeks of federally mandated early voting and to eliminate partisan gerrymandering of congressional districts.  Well, that’s a good start, though not nearly enough.  But wait …

Manchin has conditions!  Manchin’s compromise would require an ID requirement for all voters and the ability of local election officials to purge voter rolls using other government records.  NO NO NO NO NO!!!

One thing that keeps many poor people, Blacks and Hispanics away from the polls is that ID requirement and it is grossly unfair!  My granddaughter does not have a photo ID, she does not drive, and I don’t have the means to take her to obtain a state issued ID.  She is 26 years old and has been voting by mail since she was 18.  Under Manchin’s version of this bill, she would not be able to vote.  I know numerous Black people here in my own neighborhood who do not have a photo ID, but they pay taxes, they are citizens, and they have the right to vote, dammit!

And Manchin’s notion of allowing election officials to purge voter rolls is far too vague.  I can understand purging voters who have died or moved out of the state, but to give state and local election officials carte blanche to purge voter rolls at will?  Surely you jest!  Said Manchin …

“I’ve been sharing everything that I support and things I can support and vote with and things that I think is in the bill that doesn’t need to be in the bill, that doesn’t really interact with what we’re doing in West Virginia. We’ll have to see what changes are made.”

West Virginia is only one of fifty states, Manchin!  The rest of us matter too!  The bottom line, though, is it doesn’t make one damn bit of difference if Manchin supports the bill or not, for it will be subjected to the senate filibuster and we all know there are not ten republicans in the United States Senate who have a conscience.  Hell, I’m not sure there are ten republicans in the United States who have a conscience!  As far as I’m concerned, Joe Manchin can stick his ‘compromise’ where the sun doesn’t shine.

FACTS Matter And Ignorance Is NOT Bliss

Truth is not subjective!  Truth is based on facts.  Period.  Fact:  the sugar bowl on my kitchen counter is in the shape of a strawberry.  That is not disputable by any reasonable mind who has ever seen my sugar bowl … or a strawberry.

Today, however, there are people who will argue any point, even when a thousand facts have been presented by credible, well-respected experts.  Take, for example, climate change.

97% – 98% of all climate scientists worldwide support the consensus on human-caused climate change, and yet there are people who will tell you it’s all a hoax.  A HOAX???  For some, it is a matter only of ignorance, for they do not understand the difference between climate and weather.  For others, it is a matter of Terminal Stupidity for they believe what their favourite politicians tell them despite all the facts to the contrary.  Those favourite politicians take their marching orders from the heads of such companies as Exxon Mobil (oil company) and Murray Energy (coal company) because those are the CEOs that are lining the politicians’ pockets.  As of 2020, 88% of Democrats believe that climate change presents a major threat, while only 31% of Republicans believe it. The facts are there for all to see … melting icecaps, rising sea levels, rising temperatures, prolonged droughts, more severe and frequent tropical storms, and more.  How can anybody deny the science here?

And speaking of science, conspiracy theories and lies abound in Republican circles about the coronavirus pandemic and the vaccine.  Even though it is a fact that more than 600,000 people have died in the U.S. alone and 3.5 million have died worldwide as a result of the coronavirus, there are still those who thumb their nose, refuse to wear a mask, and are refusing the vaccine, saying it infringes on their ‘right’.  And yes, once again, the majority of those are Republicans.  A poll taken last month shows that 45% of Republicans say they will not be vaccinated.  One of the leading Republican conspiracy theories making the rounds is that the coronavirus pandemic is a cover for a plan to implant trackable microchips via the vaccine, and that the Microsoft co-founder Bill Gates is behind it.  This one ranks right up there with the Pizzagate conspiracy theory that claimed Hillary Clinton was running a sex trafficking ring in the basement of a pizza parlour. That one almost got people killed … the vaccine refusal will absolutely get people killed, perhaps innocent (not Republican) people.

And then there is that Big Lie that says the former one-term, twice-impeached guy actually won the election for president in 2020, despite the fact that not one single shred of evidence exists to support that lie.  In fact, every bit of evidence proves that President Biden won the election by more than 7 million votes!  And, if you want to talk about election facts, that former guy was never the legitimate president of the United States, for he LOST the 2016 election by nearly 3 million votes!  But, due to a little thing known as the Electoral College and gerrymandering, that really boils down to racist cheating, he was allowed access to the Oval Office and spent four years there tearing down instead of building up.  A national poll conducted just last week shows that fully 53% of Republicans still believe that the former guy is the “true president” now.  61% of Republicans believe the election was “stolen” from the former guy.  My jaw drops every time I see these figures … how in the Sam Hell can anybody be so bloomin’ stupid???

For more than four years, I have made every effort not to paint Republicans with a broad brush, not to lump them all in together, and not to label them, but I can no longer continue that effort.  Every single thing I am seeing today tells me two things:  Republican politicians are as corrupt as they come, they would rather rob us of our rights than lose their power; and the majority of Republican voters are just plain ignorant, not bothering to dig a bit for a few facts, but instead content to believe everything they hear on Fox ‘News’ and out of the mouths of such blathering idiots as Margie Taylor Greene, Kevin McCarthy, Ted Cruz, and others.  They say that ‘ignorance is bliss’ … and it may well be for the ignorant, but their bliss is quite literally killing the rest of us. Sorry, Republicans, but respect is earned and you have lost my respect by your ignorance, by the danger you are putting us all in with your ignorance.  If you want respect, get up off your arses and educate yourselves, try studying a few facts, and using your brain.  Earn that respect.

Good People Doing Good Things — Donnel Baird

Today’s good people is a bit different than the ones I usually write about on Wednesday mornings.  He didn’t pull a child from in front of an oncoming train, nor renovate an elderly person’s home for free, but what he has done will have a lasting positive impact on the lives of potentially thousands of people and … at the same time, he is helping the environment.  I am posting today’s ‘Good People’ directly from The Washington Post, for I could not possibly have done any better job in writing about this good person, Donnel Baird.


Donnel Baird kept his coat on while he toured the aging sanctuary. His breath froze on his face mask as he took in the peeling plaster, the dusty basement, the failing boiler that never seemed able to make Bright Light Baptist Church warm.

But when he peered into the kitchen, the shiver he felt was one of recognition. Every burner on the stove was lit. The oven door was open, its temperature set on high.

It was exactly how Baird’s family tried to heat his childhood home more than three decades earlier, in another Brooklyn building with a dysfunctional HVAC system. The landlord wouldn’t address the problem, and the family couldn’t afford to move. So they stayed, the need to keep their children warm outweighing the danger of toxic fumes and open flames.

Baird, 40, has made it his life’s work to ensure other people don’t have to make that choice.

That’s why he launched BlocPower. Since its inception in 2012, his Brooklyn-based start-up has brought clean energy to more than 1,100 low-income buildings across the New York area. Baird’s business plan is simple: the company replaces heating and cooling systems that run on fossil fuels with greener, more efficient alternatives such as electric heat pumps and solar panels. That reduces the pollution driving climate change while also making indoor air healthier. The gains in efficiency generate enough savings to lower costs for property owners and deliver a profit to BlocPower investors. And the renovations create jobs and increase property values, building wealth in neighborhoods that have long been marginalized.

After collecting more than $60 million in his latest round of fundraising, Baird is eyeing an expansion to dozens more cities, including Philadelphia; Milwaukee; Oakland, Calif. He is not shy about his ambitions. Working building by building, block by block, he aims to address injustice and help save the planet.

An activist grows in Brooklyn

The foundations for BlocPower were laid during Baird’s childhood in Bedford-Stuyvesant, a Brooklyn neighborhood just a few miles from Bright Light. It was a community with a spirit of civil rights activism — the center of school integration protests; the home district of Rep. Shirley Chisholm, the first woman and African American to seek a major party’s presidential nomination in 1972. But the area had also been depleted by predatory real estate practices and ravaged by the crack epidemic.

By the 1980s, when Baird’s parents emigrated from Guyana, the neighborhood was at a nadir. Buildings were in disrepair, jobs were hard to come by, tensions with police were high. As an elementary-schooler, Baird witnessed a fistfight escalate into a deadly shooting. That taught him about desperation, he says; when someone pulls the trigger, it’s because their back is already against the wall.

Baird’s family eventually moved to Atlanta, where Baird got scholarships to attend a private high school and then Duke University. Surrounded by Whiteness, wealth and privilege, “I really started to see the structural elements of racism in America,” Baird said.

Then police in the Bronx killed an unarmed Black man named Amadou Diallo, firing 41 shots at him. The immigrant from Guinea was only a few years older than Baird and had been standing in front of his apartment building when he was killed.

Baird sank into a deep depression. He might have stayed there if he hadn’t wound up in a course at Duke about social movements taught by historian Larry Goodwyn. He became close with the professor, who called the struggling sophomore into his office one day and told him, Baird recalled, to “get my s— together.”

“He said, ‘You’re so smart, there’s no excuse for you not to figure out how to plug in and get active on the issue of race,” Baird said.

In a classmate, Mariana Arcaya, Baird found the connection he needed. A fellow New Yorker and also a child of immigrants, she bonded with Baird over their shared outrage about the world’s injustices. She talked him into driving nine hours to protest at a 2002 meeting of the World Economic Forum in New York. And when former vice president Al Gore’s climate-change documentary “An Inconvenient Truth” came out in 2006, Arcaya forced Baird to watch it with her — twice.

“She sat me down and was like, ‘This is incredibly important,’ ” Baird said. “None of the other stuff you care about will matter unless you figure out how to solve it.”

After graduation, Baird moved back to New York to work as a community organizer, then got a job partnering with the Department of Energy to retrofit low-income houses so that they used less energy and cost less to heat.

Roughly a third of U.S. households have trouble paying energy bills, according to the Energy Information Administration. Wealth disparities and decades of racist housing policies mean that Black and Latino Americans are disproportionately likely to live in homes with broken or inefficient HVAC equipment that is more expensive to operate.

This energy inequality is a public health crisis: aging gas and oil furnaces — as well as the stoves and ovens used to supplement them — can fill homes with dangerous pollutants. A recent MIT study found that ozone and lung-irritating particles from buildings are the nation’s biggest cause of premature death from air pollution. In the neighborhood around Bright Light, where 67 percent of rented homes suffer from maintenance defects, children are hospitalized for severe asthma at twice the citywide rate.

It’s also an environmental crisis. The energy needed to heat, cool and operate buildings produces almost a third of the United States’ planet-warming emissions.

Working on buildings “brought all the themes of my life together,” Baird said. “The racial justice stuff, the economic justice, the climate stuff.”

Yet he kept running into logistical problems. The federal retrofitting process felt too small and too slow. Renovations would uncover additional complications the policy wasn’t designed to fix.

If working for the government wasn’t the solution, he would just have to find another way.

Building a business

When in 2011 Baird announced he was enrolling at the business school at Columbia University, Arcaya was stunned. Where was the man who’d driven through the night to protest billionaires meeting at the World Economic Forum? What had happened to fighting inequality and changing systems and saving the world?

Don’t worry, Baird told his best friend. He was still going to do all that. He had a plan.

He knew the tools existed to make buildings green, healthy and efficient. Replacing oil and gas furnaces with electric appliances such as heat pumps — which pull air from the outdoors and warm it over an evaporator coil — dramatically lowered heating bills and reduced carbon emissions. Rooftop solar panels provided cheap, clean energy to buildings, and whatever wasn’t used could be sold back into the grid. Smart thermostats, light sensors and other forms of artificial intelligence made the new equipment even more cost-effective.

But high upfront costs meant those tools were out of reach for people in neighborhoods like Bed-Stuy, even though they saved money in the long run.

This was an investment opportunity waiting to be seized.

Baird began to envision a company that could raise huge amounts of capital and use it to finance green retrofits in low-income buildings. Investors would be paid back out of a portion of the utility bill savings. Baird would make the venture profitable by embracing technology and seeking out partnerships every step of the way.

He would audit families’ energy use to determine the most efficient way to meet their needs and build software that could calculate the best way to engineer and finance the project. He would partner with the high-tech architecture firms that small homeowners usually couldn’t afford, using tools such as 3-D scans and digital models to bring down construction costs. He would forge agreements with utilities and cities that would enable him to earn even more money by helping those institutions meet their emissions reduction goals. And he would provide job training to residents in the communities he served, to ensure that the benefits of each project lasted long after the work was complete.

BlocPower launched while Baird was still a student at Columbia. He skipped one of his final business school exams to give a presentation at the White House. It turned out to be the right decision; he walked away with a $2 million contract from the Energy Department.

Yet when Baird went to fundraise, he felt “like a fish out of water” in the mostly White, wealthy worlds of Wall Street and Silicon Valley. Prospective funders told him that low-income buildings were seen as bad investments. The unspoken message seemed to be that he was seen as a bad investment.

But Baird is nothing if not tenacious; a Black man in America has to be, he said. So he studied the systems that had excluded people like him and figured out how to work within them. He went to the banks that had denied loans to Black people and the corporations that profited from fossil fuels and used their wealth to create change.

It was hard. But in 2015, when his son Nash was born, he got a powerful new motivation to keep trying.

“I have to find a way in the real world to come up with a plan that is going to preserve the life chances for myself and my children and my grandchildren,” Baird said.

So Baird learned to call community centers “small and medium enterprise buildings” and not to wear a suit to meetings in California. He found many of the skills he learned as a community organizer translated into the business world. He also had a “secret weapon” — an understanding of what it takes to create change.

Ultimately, Baird garnered millions from investment funds and venture capitalists. A crowdfunding campaign launched this month has already raised $200,000.

“It’s not often you find someone with the skills, the ambition and just the fortitude to take all these things on,” said Margaret Anadu, chair of the Urban Investment Group at Goldman Sachs and one of Baird’s early backers. “The fact that he can wrap all of that up into an investment opportunity that is also commercial and profitable and scalable — it’s just a level of innovation that is pretty unique.”

“People talk about a win-win,” she added. “And with Donnel, it’s a win-win-win-win-win.”

The foundations for change

Not long after his initial visit to Bright Light, Baird got a frantic call from Eddie Karim, the church’s pastor. The boiler had finally broken — right in the middle of the snowiest month New York had seen in years.

Baird authorized an emergency heat pump installation for the church, and a few days later, Karim watched as a work crew fanned out across the building.

Luke Ericson and Devin Conroy, who use high-tech construction tools, descended into the boiler room.

“Whoa,” Ericson said.

An ancient 1,300-gallon oil tank filled the first room. Beyond it, a rusty boiler that looked to be 50 years old — far exceeding the state-recommended lifetime of about 15 years.

“Yeah,” said Conroy. “It’s not very ideal.”

But he’d seen it before. More than 70 percent of buildings in the city still run on oil- and gas-powered boilers, many of them in equally bad condition.

And compared with the rest of the work that needed to be done on the century-old structure, this was an easy fix. The oil tank could be scrapped and the boiler retrofitted with electric heat pumps, which would slash the amount of energy needed to heat the three-story building. If New York switched its grid to renewable energy sources, Bright Light’s heat would be completely green — no carbon emissions at all.

Upstairs, Karim watched Ericson take a 3-D scan of the sanctuary, resplendent even in disrepair. Intricate mosaics decorate the floors; LED lightbulbs — Karim’s first step toward sustainability — gleam in the chandeliers.

“It’s special, isn’t it?” Karim asked. Once a synagogue serving the neighborhood’s Jewish immigrant community, it became a Baptist church when the area’s demographics shifted. Residents have worshiped in the space for exactly 100 years.

Bright Light is a beloved institution in Brownsville, one of Brooklyn’s poorest neighborhoods: It operates a day care and a senior citizens program and runs food drives and vaccine information sessions during the covid-19 pandemic.

But the congregation has dwindled, and the church suffers from the same lack of resources that has constrained the rest of the community. “The main problem now is decay,” Karim said. “It sounds bad, but it’s what happens when people feel defeated.”

That’s why he rebuffs suggestions that he sell the building and relocate somewhere easier to maintain. He wants to show that the problems are fixable, that an old and struggling structure can have a sustainable future. The boiler replacement alone is expected to save Bright Light about 20 percent on its utility bills and reduce emissions 70 percent.

“My heart’s desire is to get rid of fossil fuels,” he said. “To be able to be an example to the community.”

He’s come to embrace Baird’s vision of what Bright Light could be, after the heat pumps are humming and the thermostats are set and the solar panels are soaking up sunshine. An antenna atop the building will measure weather conditions and send signals to the heating system to optimize its energy use. Batteries in the basement will store energy and sell excess back to the grid. Schoolkids and community groups will gather in the church for its cool air and WiFi. The church that has long served as an anchor for Brownsville will also become a springboard for change.

“It’s such a concrete example of what it would look like to bring about climate justice,” said Arcaya, who is now a professor of urban planning at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.

A Bronx family is now saving 15 percent on their energy bill. A White Plains church has cut its greenhouse gas emissions by 70 percent and is earning new income hosting summer weddings now that it has an effective air-conditioning system.

If he closes his eyes, Baird can envision Brooklyn in 2030. Every building is electric, and asthma rates are low. Rooftop solar panels connect homes to a neighborhood microgrid, which is run by a local energy cooperative, which is owned by residents. People earn extra income by selling their carbon savings as credits to big industries struggling to reduce their own emissions.

“We can create and build a new industry in these neighborhoods,” Baird said. “And they can own it and control it and build wealth by saving the planet.”

Laughable Lies

Sometimes you just have to laugh at the ignorance perpetuated by the Republicans and their megaphone, Fox News.  The lunacy is incredible and laughable, but what’s not quite as funny is that some 40% of the people in this nation don’t bother to assess what they hear, don’t take a minute to look for some facts to back up the opinions of the Republicans and their minions.  Perhaps the Republican Party would do better, have a bit of legitimacy, if they spent more time on developing a platform and less time on making up lies and conspiracy theories.  Anyway … Paul Krugman, writing for the New York Times, has written a piece mostly about the latest lie/fallacy/made-up story by Republicans attempting to discredit President Biden, and it’s well worth the read.


Beer, Brussels Sprouts, Bernie Madoff and Today’s G.O.P.

By Paul Krugman

Opinion Columnist

On Friday Larry Kudlow, who was Donald Trump’s top economic adviser, told Fox News viewers that Joe Biden’s climate plans would force Americans to stop eating meat. On July 4, he declared, you’d have to “throw back a plant-based beer with your grilled brussels sprouts.”

Kudlow’s remarks raise several questions. What, exactly, does he think beer is made from? Also, doesn’t he know that grilled brussels sprouts are, in fact, delicious?

More important, why would anyone believe this assertion about Biden’s plans, or expect anyone else to believe it? Why were Kudlow’s claims echoed by many Republicans, from Donald Trump Jr., to members of Congress, to the governor of Texas?

To answer this question, it helps to think about Bernie Madoff, the infamous fraudster who died April 14. Seriously.

About Biden and burgers: The administration has, in fact, said nothing at all about changing America’s diet. Furthermore, anything along those lines would be very much at odds with Biden’s whole approach to climate change, which is to rely much more on carrots than on sticks, to provide positive incentives to invest in low-emission technologies rather than discouraging emissions with taxes or regulations.

Whether that approach will prove sufficient is debatable, but it is the approach the administration is taking, and telling people to stop eating meat would be completely out of character.

So where is this coming from? Kudlow took his cues from a sleazy article in The Daily Mail, a right-wing British tabloid. The article didn’t actually assert that Biden is proposing to restrict meat consumption; instead, it offered a series of speculations about what might happen. Among other things it took the most extreme scenario from a University of Michigan study of how reduced meat consumption could affect greenhouse gas emissions — a study released in January 2020 that had nothing whatsoever to do with the Biden plans. The Daily Mail also used a deceptive graphic to make it seem as if this was an actual administration proposal.

American right-wing pundits and politicians then ran with it. Did they actually believe the nonsense they were spouting? Well, Kudlow’s apparent belief that beer is made with meat is arguably a point in his favor, an indication that he’s genuinely clueless rather than merely cynical.

What’s clear, however, is that neither Kudlow nor other Republicans touting an imaginary war on meat saw any need to check out their story, felt any concern that their audience — Fox News viewers, Republican voters — would find the claim that Joe Biden is coming for their red meat implausible.

Why not? That’s where Bernie Madoff comes in.

The revelations about Madoff’s immense Ponzi scheme and how he pulled it off introduced many of us to the concept of affinity fraud: scams that prey upon people by exploiting a sense of shared identity. Madoff defrauded wealthy Jews by convincing them that he was just like them.

A similar approach has long been an essential part of the Republican political strategy. As the party’s economic policies have become ever more elitist, ever more tilted toward the interests of the wealthy, it has sought to cover its tracks by running candidates who seem like regular guys you’d like to have a (meat-based?) beer with.

The flip side of this strategy is a continual attempt by the G.O.P. to convince voters that Democrats, who represent a much more diverse set of voters than Republicans, aren’t people like them; call it disaffinity fraud.

The goal is to portray Democrats as woke feminist vegetarians who don’t share the values of Real Americans. Hence the right’s obsessive focus on “cancel culture” and Democratic women of color, and the continual assertions that the white male senior citizen who leads the party is somehow a passive puppet.

Right-wing media are pushing this narrative nonstop. According to a Morning Consult poll last month, more Republicans said they’d heard “a lot” about the move to withdraw some Dr. Seuss books than said the same about Biden’s huge Covid-19 relief bill.

It doesn’t matter that Joe Biden isn’t actually trying to ban hamburgers or — to take another false claim right-wing pundits and politicians keep repeating — that he hasn’t “taken down” the border with Mexico. Republicans have pretty much given up even trying to make a case against Biden’s actual policies, let alone proposing serious policies themselves.

Instead, it’s all smears. Democrats, declared Kudlow, are “ideological zealots who don’t care one whit about America’s well-being.” That’s pretty rich coming from a man famed for his unwavering commitment to the doctrine that cutting taxes on the wealthy solves all problems, no matter how often his predictions fail.

But never mind; the point is that Kudlow and others consider it OK to throw out wild claims about what Democrats are up to, because those are the kinds of things woke liberals would do, aren’t they?

Will the public go along? The Biden administration thinks not, betting it can overcome the power of affinity fraud with policies that offer real benefits to working Americans. Unfortunately, there’s no guarantee that this strategy will work.

Happy Earth Day 2021!!!

Today is Earth Day … the 51st anniversary of Earth Day, to be exact.  Typically, Earth Day is assigned a different theme or area of focus each year; this year’s theme is “Restore Our Earth.”


I am always surprised by people who say, “Yeah, so???” Or those who say “What the heck is Earth Day?”  Or worse yet, those who say it isn’t their problem.  So, please bear with me while I explain very briefly.

History – In The Beginning

The concept for Earth Day was conceived in the mind of then-Senator Gaylord Nelson of Wisconsin, after witnessing the ravages of the 1969 massive oil spill in Santa Barbara, California. Senator Nelson recruited help from Republican Congressman Pete McCloskey and others, and on April 22,1970, 20 million Americans took to the streets, parks, and auditoriums to demonstrate for a healthy, sustainable environment in massive coast-to-coast rallies. Thousands of colleges and universities organized protests against the deterioration of the environment. Groups that had been fighting against oil spills, polluting factories and power plants, raw sewage, toxic dumps, pesticides, freeways, the loss of wilderness, and the extinction of wildlife suddenly realized they shared common values.

Earth Day 2018-4Earth Day 1970 achieved a rare political alignment, enlisting support from Republicans and Democrats, rich and poor, city slickers and farmers, tycoons and labor leaders. By the end of that year, the first Earth Day had led to the creation of the United States Environmental Protection Agency and the passage of the Clean Air, Clean Water, and Endangered Species Acts.

In 1995, President Bill Clinton awarded Senator Nelson the Presidential Medal of Freedom—the highest honor given to civilians in the United States—for his role as Earth Day founder.

From Then To Now

Through the years, Earth Day has focused largely on global warming and a push for clean energy. Earth Day 2000 used the power of the Internet to organize activists, but also featured a drum chain that traveled from village to village in Gabon, Africa. Hundreds of thousands of people gathered on the National Mall in Washington, DC for a First Amendment Rally. Earth Day 2000 sent world leaders the loud and clear message that citizens around the world wanted quick and decisive action on global warming and clean energy.Earth Day 2018-3Earth Day 2010 saw new challenges:  Climate change deniers, well-funded oil lobbyists, reticent politicians, a disinterested public, and a divided environmental community all contributed to the narrative—cynicism versus activism.  Still, some 250,000 people showed up at the National Mall for a Climate Rally, launched the world’s largest environmental service project—A Billion Acts of Green®–introduced a global tree planting initiative that has since grown into The Canopy Project, and engaged 22,000 partners in 192 countries in observing Earth Day.


And Today???

Under the previous administration, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) was nearly decimated and environmental regulations rolled back or reversed.  Four the past four years the United States has stood alone among all nations in eschewing the science of global climate change.  However, thankfully, the Biden administration understands the critical need to address the multiple issues that are destroying our planet and  we are, once again, an active player in the fight against climate change and other environmental issues.  I believe that the vast majority of people in this nation do understand how critical our environment and our stewardship of the planet earth is.


What can YOU do?

You may think that there isn’t much you, personally, can do to help restore our earth, but you’d be wrong.  Each and every one of us can do a few simple things to help and little things add up to big things, as we all know.  Here are a few ideas from the Old Farmer’s Almanac …

1. SUPPORT OUR POLLINATORS!

Bring native bees and other pollinating creatures to your garden. One way to do this is by selecting the right plants. Need ideas?

2. CLEAN UP PLASTIC IN YOUR NEIGHBORHOOD OR LOCAL PARK

One of the best ways to connect with the Earth is through cleanups! Go on a walk with a trash bag and help to clean up any plastic that you find. Perhaps you know of a nearby ditch that is polluted with trash that needs a spring cleaning! You’ll start to realize that plastic permeates every aspect of our lives. But as the world wakes up to its addiction, just how easy is it to ditch plastic while growing and storing more of our own food? Don’t forget to recycle what plastic you can. See a Plastics Recycling Chart.

3. SWAP OUT YOUR KITCHEN AND HOUSEHOLD PRODUCTS!

Let’s talk about the cooking and cleaning products that touch the food we eat as well as our skin. This year, we’ve discovered a line of kitchen and household products called If You Care.” Everything’s biodegradable and does not use chemicals or plastic. Think 100% recycled aluminum foil, chemical-free parchment paper for baking, compostable bags made with potato starch, and even vegetable-based inks for their packaging. We love company’s motto: “We care simply because it’s the right thing to do!” You can find If You Care products online and in stores. See the store locator.

For more ideas, visit the Old Farmer’s Almanac.


In Summary

This is a post about Earth Day, but more to the point it is a post about the need for Earth Day.  It isn’t just about one day a year, about marches and articles such as this one, but it is about awareness.  The entire purpose of Earth Day is to raise awareness, to stir people to take action.  Climate deniers will continue to deny the need to protect our environment, not because they are as stupid as they seem, but rather because they are as greedy as they seem.  But there is much that each and every one of us can do with very little effort.  Recycle, pick up trash when you see it on the streets or in your local parks, plant a tree, plant flowers to encourage pollination, turn the thermostat down, conserve water, reduce food waste, turn off lights, consolidate errands and trips in the car, walk more/drive less, take the bus … use some common sense and be a good steward of the planet.  And meanwhile, keep petitioning your elected officials at local, state and federal levels … let them know that a healthy environment is more important to you than the profits of the fossil fuel and other industries.  Please … my life and yours are at stake, but more importantly our children’s and grandchildren’s lives are at stake.

Happy Earth Day, my friends!  Why not celebrate by planting a sapling or a few flowers in the back yard?

From The Mind Of Filosofa

Today I have so many thoughts on a variety of topics rattling around in my old head that I thought I’d share some of them with you.

I don’t know about you guys, but I’m still reeling from all the shootings last week and over the weekend.  So many things have gone wrong in this country over the past 4+ years, some I fear will never be reparable, such as the gun culture, but not only that.  I was watching a clip a few days ago of Congressman Jim Jordan literally browbeating Dr. Anthony Fauci, accusing him of “robbing Americans of their civil liberties”, yelling at him, interrupting him, gesticulating wildly, and demanding an exact date when people could stop wearing masks, stop social distancing, etc.  My thoughts were that this is not the way a professional lawmaker behaves!  Finally, Representative Maxine Waters told Jordan to “shut your mouth”, which I found very appropriate under the circumstances, but now the most unqualified member of Congress, Marjorie Greene, has made a motion to have Ms. Waters expelled from Congress for what she said to Jordan.  This, my friends, is just one example of the lack of intelligence and professionalism in certain of today’s members of Congress.

Then, I saw a question posed by a friend on Twitter:  Why do people who refuse the vaccine because they believe their god will protect them, think they must own a gun?  Think about that one for a few minutes.

This country has many problems today, perhaps more than at any other time in its history, and the gun culture is in the top five.  Worse yet, as long as a vast majority of congressional republicans are in the pockets of the gun lobby, ie NRA, this isn’t going to change.  They will obfuscate even policies that 80% of the people in this country support, in order to keep their donors happy.  This is not what we elect and pay these people for, and we are being cheated on a daily basis.  I have readers from all over the world, and those who are outside the U.S. are appalled by our gun culture.  Remember when the former guy called certain countries “shithole countries”?  Well, that’s how the U.S. is coming to be viewed around the globe.

There are those who would say that immigration and the economy are our biggest challenges today, but in my book, we have far greater problems.

Also in my top five is racism … and other forms of bigotry such as those who are intolerant of the LGBT community, those who believe men are superior to women, those who would demand that everyone follow their religion and that laws reflect their own beliefs and biases.  The blatant racism we see in police departments across the country is intolerable!  What’s worse is that it’s always been like this … we just didn’t see it.  The internet has placed such things under a large microscope, and we are just now awakening to the horrors that Black people have been living with … forever.

Then there’s our response … or lack thereof … to climate change in recent years.  Sure, there are many of us here who do our best to respect the environment, planting bee-friendly flowers, turning our thermostats down, driving less and driving fuel-efficient vehicles, but there are those who selfishly refuse to be inconvenienced.  Just yesterday I read an article by a woman who said we should support the fossil fuel industry, should not have re-joined the Paris Climate Accords, and basically argued that climate change is a hoax.  It seems to me that half the people in this country believe that way, are unwilling to make lifestyle changes in order to preserve this planet for their own grandchildren.

The majority of Republicans still believe the Big Lie, that the former guy won the 2020 election, despite all evidence to the contrary.  As long as that many people are that ignorant, they will continue voting for people like Marjorie Greene, Mitch McConnell, Jim Jordan and others who are intent on destroying what few democratic principles are left in this nation today.  And the votes of the few will outnumber the votes of the majority if the states are allowed to continue creating legislation that disenfranchises Blacks, Hispanics, the poor, the elderly, and the young.  If they have their way, our government will be elected only by white people of privilege.  The rest of us will become second-class citizens without a voice.

It is obvious to me that this nation is on a downhill path and the only hope for the future is for people to become educated about reality, to stop believing the myths and conspiracy theories that fill the airwaves 24 hours a day, 7 days a week on such places as Fox ‘News’, Twitter and Facebook.  Unless people wake up and learn to separate fact from fantasy, I don’t even want to think about what the U.S. will be twenty years from now.  Fortunately, I won’t be here to see it, but my daughter and granddaughter will, and millions of other people will have to live with the ‘legacy’ we are leaving them.

Saturday Surprise — Something To Make You Smile

It has been one of those weeks from hell, hasn’t it?  I need something to bring a smile to my face, and I figured just maybe you do too!  Sometimes nothing softens the heart and makes us smile like those non-human species we call animals or critters.  I snagged these from The Guardian’s ‘Week in Wildlife’ feature last week …

Sambar deer cool off in shallow water at Yala National Park, some 250 km south-west of Colombo, Sri Lanka Photograph: Ishara S Kodikara/AFP/Getty Images

A fox on Russky Island. The local population is rebounding after a fall in the 90s caused by poaching. Photograph: Yuri Smityuk/TASS/Getty Images

A reed warbler feeding a cuckoo, taken from a hide at WWT Martin Mere. Cuckoos lay their eggs in the nests of other birds, which raise the chicks in place of their own offspring. Photograph: Maggie Bullock/WWT/PA

A Formosan ferret badger at the Taipei Zoo, one of a number of animals to have been suggested as the intermediary carrier of the coronavirus. Photograph: Sam Yeh/AFP/Getty Images

A cardinal sits in a flowering tree at the National Arboretum in Washington, DC. Warm weather has led to blossoms blooming earlier than expected. Photograph: Eva Hambach/AFP/Getty Images

Brown hares are seen in a field near Niederleis, Austria, on Good Friday. Photograph: Georg Hochmuth/APA/AFP/Getty Images

A northern corroboree frog – one of Australia’s most endangered species – is seen in the breeding tank at Taronga Zoo in Sydney. Its population in the wild was severely impacted by the 2019-20 bushfires. Photograph: Jenny Evans/Getty Images

A popular bald eagle nesting livestream from the Friends of the Redding Eagles, northern California, which rushed to install its webcam for the pandemic audience last summer after a five-year absence. Liberty, a 22-year-old female, is on her third “marriage” and her three chicks with seven-year-old partner Guardian were hatched between 21 and 24 March. Liberty has raised 22 offspring from egg to fledgling, including three sets of triplets. Photograph: Friends of the Redding Eagles

A royal Bengal tiger at Bardiya National Park in Nepal. Previously known as the Royal Karnali Wildlife Reserve in 1976, the park is famous for royal Bengal tiger sightings. Photograph: Niranjan Shrestha/AP

A grey whale is seen at Ojo de Liebre Lagoon in Guerrero Negro, Mexico. Each year hundreds of north Pacific grey whales travel thousands of miles from Alaska to the Baja California Peninsula breeding lagoons. Photograph: Guillermo Arias/AFP/Getty Images

A leopard walks at Yala National Park, some 250 km southwest of Colombo, Sri Lanka. Photograph: Ishara S Kodikara/AFP/Getty Images

One of 185 seized baby giant tortoises, in Puerto Ayora, Galapagos, Ecuador, which had been stuffed in a suitcase to be trafficked. Photograph: Galapagos Ecologic Airport/AFP/Getty Images

Researchers follow a Polar bear in the Arctic Ocean during the Umka 2021 expedition organised by the Russian Geographical Society. It aims to research and monitor the polar bear population and assess the impact of climate change. Photograph: Gavriil Grigorov/TASS/Getty Images

Sambar deer at Bardiya National Park, Nepal. Photograph: Niranjan Shrestha/AP

A Lesser Antillean iguana (Iguana delicatissima), a lizard endemic to the Lesser Antilles, in its natural habitat on the French Caribbean island of Martinique. Photograph: Lionel Chamoiseau/AFP/Getty Images

Lutjanus bohar, the two-spot red snapper, is a species of snapper belonging to the family Lutjanidae, at the Rowley Shoals archipelago off WA, Australia. A study shows that fishing restrictions across the Rowley Shoals archipelago helped sustain threatened species and biodiversity during a time of ‘unprecedented’ decline. Photograph: Courtesy of Matt Birt/BRUV

Wasps on aruera flowers (Bidens bipinnata) at the Lunarejo Valley, in Rivera, Uruguay. The national park, in northern Uruguay at the border with Brazil, is seeing an increase in tourist traffic, as people look for less crowded places to visit. The valley is home to many species of flora and fauna, with at least 150 types of birds, snakes, amphibians, anteaters, armadillo, foxes and wild boars. Photograph: Raúl Martínez/EPA

Kentish plover (Charadrius alexandrinus) chick at Nafplio, Greece. Photograph: Bougiotis Vangelis/EPA

People watching migratory birds at a wetland near the Yalu River in Dandong, in China’s north-eastern Liaoning province. Photograph: AFP/Getty Images

Storks stand in their nest in Kizilcahamam, outside the Turkish capital of Ankara. Every year, storks migrate to Turkey for an incubation period as the weather gets warmer in spring. Photograph: Adem Altan/AFP/Getty Images

An illegal bow trap set in Brescia, where bird poaching incidents are the highest in Italy. With 5 million birds a year illegally caught in Italy, activists are teaming up with local police to trap the hunters. Photograph: WWF Italy

Mandarin ducks on the Erdaobai River at the foot of Changbai Mountain in Jilin Province. Photograph: Sipa Asia/REX/Shutterstock

If you’ve got a minute more to spare, I highly recommend you hop over to Annie’s blog and check out the most adorable penguin and how he evaded the sharks that were determined to turn him into a snack!  It’s a short video, but I promise it will leave a smile on your face!

Happy weekend, my friends!

Two Worlds

Of late … well, for the past decade or so … I have wondered how the human species could possibly survive to the end of this century, for we are destroying our home, our world, and each other at an alarming rate. Professor Taboo, aka PT, has written a post that I think should be required reading for every human alive … thoughtful and though-provoking. Thank you, Prof, for your words of wisdom and the eye-opening photos.

The Professor's Convatorium


OF WONDER AND SPLENDOR

Just like as in a nest of boxes round,
Degrees of sizes in each box are found:
So, in this world, may many others be
Thinner and less, and less still by degree:
Although they are not subject to our sense,
A world may be no bigger than two-pence.
Nature is curious, and such works may shape,
Which our dull senses easily escape.Margaret CavendishOf Many Worlds in This World

There are a number of Earth’s animals, great and small, that care for each other. They seem to have feelings for the welfare of another. They demonstrate an innate behavior to protect their own as a whole rather than and possibly at the demise of themselves. In human terms this is called compassion, empathy, courage, altruism, love, and other inspiring virtues. In scientific terms it is known as eusociality and forms of superorganism behavior

View original post 458 more words

♫ Earth Song ♫ (Redux)

Sometimes music is just for fun, other times to stir memories, and sometimes it is to make a statement.  In recent years, the environment has been a hot-button topic, with scientists telling us that we are destroying the only planet that is capable of sustaining human life as we know it, and others claiming it’s all a hoax, that we should go on filling the air and seas with toxins and trash.

Michael Jackson, known for his socially-conscious music, released this song, dealing with the environment and animal welfare, on November 27, 1995.  The music video you are about to see was shot in four separate geographical locations, including the Americas, Europe and Africa.  According to Michael Jackson …

“I remember writing ‘Earth Song’ when I was in Austria, in a hotel. And I was feeling so much pain and so much suffering of the plight of the Planet Earth. And for me, this is Earth’s Song, because I think nature is trying so hard to compensate for man’s mismanagement of the Earth. And with the ecological unbalance going on, and a lot of the problems in the environment, I think earth feels the pain, and she has wounds, and it’s about some of the joys of the planet as well. But this is my chance to pretty much let people hear the voice of the planet. And this is ‘Earth Song.’ And that’s what inspired it. And it just suddenly dropped into my lap when I was on tour in Austria.”

The song has won numerous awards, perhaps none more important than the Genesis Award: 1995 Doris Day Music Award, given each year for animal sensitivity.

In 2008, a writer for the Nigeria Exchange noted, “Earth Song drew the world’s attention to the degradation and bastardization of the earth as a fall out of various human activities”.  Ten years later and we still haven’t gotten the wake-up call.

The video, directed by fine art photographer Nick Brandt had an environmental theme, showing images of animal cruelty, deforestation, pollution, poaching, poverty and war. Jackson and the world’s people unite in a spiritual chant—”Earth Song”—which summons a force that heals the world. Using special effects, time is reversed so that life returns, war ends and the forests regrow.

Earth Song
Michael Jackson

What about sunrise
What about rain
What about all the things that you said
We were to gain
What about killing fields
Is there a time
What about all the things
That you said were yours and mine

Did you ever stop to notice
All the blood we’ve shed before
Did you ever stop to notice
This crying Earth, these weeping shores

Aah, ooh

What have we done to the world
Look what we’ve done
What about all the peace
That you pledge your only son

What about flowering fields
Is there a time
What about all the dreams
That you said was yours and mine

Did you ever stop to notice
All the children dead from war
Did you ever stop to notice
This crying earth, these weeping shores

Aah, ooh
Aah, ooh

I used to dream
I used to glance beyond the stars
Now I don’t know where we are
Although I know we’ve drifted far

Aah, ooh
Aah, ooh

Aah, ooh
Aah, ooh

Hey, what about yesterday
(What about us)
What about the seas
(What about us)
The heavens are falling down
(What about us)
I can’t even breathe
(What about us)
What about apathy
(What about us)
Drowning in the seas
(What about us)
What about the promised land
Preachin’ what I believe
(What about us)
What about the holy land
(What about it)
What about the greed
(What about us)
Where did we go wrong
Someone tell me why
(What about us)
What about baby boy
(What about him)
What about the days
(What about us)
What about all their joy
Do we give a damn

Aah, ooh
Aah, ooh

Songwriters: Michael Jackson
Earth Song lyrics © Sony/ATV Music Publishing LLC, Warner/Chappell Music, Inc