Monday! Good news! GNR newsroom! Me! Killer300! Bhu! Lets go! Lots of stuff! Lightning round! GNR Theater! WOOOOOO!
Happy Monday all. This week America hosts the annual gathering of APEC, the Asian Pacific Economic Cooperation organization, 21 countries in all. Important geopolitical week for President and Biden and the US. As these foreign leaders arrive in San Francisco in the coming days, they will see a strong American President, with the best economy in the G7 and ably leading us through daunting global challenges, and a vibrant and unified Democratic Party fresh from winning elections across the US, again. The Republican Party they will see, on the other hand, will be overflowing with MAGA, extremism and division, ready to shut the government down; eager to pull the US from NATO; inexplicably blocking routine appointments to DOD/State/DOJ in a time of rising global conflict; turning off critical domestic security programs; and promising to end American democracy. This unwelcome contrast will reinforce one of the central tenets of Hopium - that America is strong and prosperous when led by Democrats; and if anything is in decline it is one of our two political parties, not this great country itself.
The GOP shook hands with the devil, now they’re stuck with him, and their loss is our gain.
The biggest near-term barrier to U.S. clean energy goals isn’t the cost of clean energy technologies or getting the permits to build them. It’s the massive backlog of new clean energy projects already waiting to connect to the grid that’s threatening to put the country’s decarbonization goals out of reach.
Solving the root causes of those interconnection problems — and expanding a transmission grid that isn’t growing fast enough to accommodate all the clean energy being planned — will take years.
But in the meantime, clean-energy developers are looking for every opportunity available to get more mileage out of the existing grid. One emerging method: using software to help them find which parts of the grid have room for new projects — and estimate how much they can expect to have to pay to upgrade the grid if that headroom is used up.
Hey no one ever said transitioning to a new form of energy would be easy, but its something we have to do, and I think we are more than up to the task.
On August 5, 2023, advocates for people experiencing homelessness in North Wilkesboro, North Carolina, scored an upset victory. They opened a 20-bed shelter for short-term guests in a donated building that once belonged to a dentist and his wife.
The private facility fills a gap that the town ignored for years, despite a prolonged housing crisis that continues to push people onto the streets. Los Angeles and New York City both recently declared record levels of homelessness. Boston, Chicago and Phoenix report similar surges, and smaller communities are sharing the burden.
When people make their voices heard they get can get what they want. And what we want is affordable housing.
Advocates are calling for places of learning to instead be aligned with Indigenous values and aesthetics. The demand for meaningful action has emerged and reverberated throughout institutions of higher education across the country.
“When I think of decolonizing, I think about exercising ways of Indigeneity,” says Sidney Fellows, a Shoshone-Bannock and Chippewa-Cree Master of Science student at the University of Montana. “For me, that means maybe less development, or focusing resources on native plants, maybe creating more areas where we can access foods or things like that when we’re in these college spaces.”
This is a really cool idea. I wish I had gone to a college like this.
With a perpetual churn of people coming and going, my home remained a hub of feminist and community activism in this heyday of women’s liberation. Housemates did not pay rent, but in those days mortgage repayments, which I paid, were low. Most of the rooms, including the basement and attic, were always filled with bodies, chat and arguments, plus regular visitors, some of whom remain friends to this day, including the then budding writers Marsha Rowe, who founded Spare Rib with Rosie Boycott, and Michèle Roberts. We were all busy launching feminist and related battles on every front, trying to build a movement that would be inclusive while also battling to create a women-friendly, broader left culture and activism.
We supported our women’s centre, but some of us also worked alongside men at our community press, helping to produce and distribute our free alternative paper, the Islington Gutter Press. I still recall with pleasure visiting the dense network of resource centres, housing co-ops, tenants’ organisations and antiracist groups in our patch when not taking to the streets to distribute the paper. Together we were trying, not always successfully, to combat sexism and men’s taken-for-granted domination. “We don’t compete, but we win anyway,” was one self-mocking reflection from two of the men at a Christmas party in response to our criticism that they remained dominant in our shared spaces. Mostly, however, we were battling sexism in the community, such as when we picketed our local newspaper, the Islington Gazette, which then still carried female pin-ups. One of the male journalists, a union rep called Clive, came out to support us, and the paper soon changed its policy.
Its always nice when people live and work together.
The sudden death of former Chinese Premier Li Keqiang at the age of 68 on October 27 has shocked the country. Li Keqiang was considered a long-time rival of Chinese president Xi Jinping and his death has sparked spontaneous mourning across the country, with thousands of flowers showing up in places such as Li’s hometown in Anhui. Some overseas dissidents coined the moment as “Flower Revolution”.
On the internet, the mourning of Li Keqiang has been heavily censored. The ban of discussion surrounding Li’s death is more or less anticipated as speculation and conspiracy theories have gone viral.
Li emphasized the significance of open market policy, which was at odd with Xi Jinping's stress on party leadership in all sectors, including the country’s economy. His sudden “heart attack” in Shanghai triggered a lot of speculation given that he had just been retired for a few months, and as a former top leader, was still accompanied by security officers.
Is change on the horizon for China, lets wait and see.
For for our first installment of GNR theater this week: When Cryptobros get what’s coming to them:
Last Friday, a federal appeals court nudged Louisiana toward redrawing its congressional maps to include a second Black-majority district.
Although the new decision in this case, known as Robinson v. Ardoin, does not outright order Louisiana to redraw its maps, the appeals court found no errors in a trial court decision that determined the current maps are a racial gerrymander that violates the federal Voting Rights Act. The case will return to the trial court, albeit on a delayed schedule, which is likely to hand down a final decision requiring Louisiana to actually redraw its maps sometime in 2024.
If you are the sort of person who believes that lower court judges follow the legal rules and precedents handed down to them by Congress and the Supreme Court, then the Robinson decision will not surprise you.
The lower courts are on our side, even the ones that were picked by Trump.
Now for another video,
The GOP fought tooth and nail for years to get rid of Roe vs. Wade, with no thought of the potential fallout. Did they think we would just hang our heads and meekly accept it? The GOP are fools.
A powerful new electric vehicle recently started roaming the leaf-strewn streets of Portland, Oregon. Between its tires sits a hefty 400-kilowatt-hour battery pack. Inside its body is the daily detritus discarded by residents of downtown Portland.
The battery-powered garbage truck is the first of its kind in the state. COR Disposal and Recycling, which owns and operates the vehicle, debuted the truck in early November at a ceremony with the utility Portland General Electric. The zero-emissions model will collect trash in East Portland, an area that’s disproportionately affected by toxic diesel exhaust from garbage trucks, big rigs and other heavy-duty vehicles operating nearby.
Really cool news about electric garbage trucks.
And I think its that time again, grab your rain poncho, we got a FNR Lightning round.
Portugal just ran on 100% renewables for six days in a row
Maine utilities eye move to time varying electric rates
Inflation was zero last month (and other stuff)
What could go right? Baby knowledge boom
Deforestation in Brazil down 22% in a year
Indonesia floats southeast Asia’s largest solar plant
Channel island plant species fully recovered
Why Michigan clean energy bill is a big deal
over 60 countries back deal to triple renewables this decade
Marijuana legal for over half of Americans
Minnesota will soon be able to disarm dangerous people
digital twins may enable personalized health treatment
Blood test for Alzheimer's in five years
new plastic self heals, is recyclable, and can feed marine life
NYU Langone health performs first full eye and partial face transplant
FDA approves first vaccine against Chikungunya virus
London low emission zones improve air quality, health, and well being
Kenya manufacturers get WHO go ahead for producing Malaria drug
Bangladesh, Maldives, DPR Korea make tremendous strides towards disease elimination
Alright, back to our regular stories
A judge appointed by President Donald Trump ruled that North Dakota's legislative maps violated the Votings Rights Act (VRA) and must be revised before the end of the year.
The ruling filed Friday follows similar legal action centered around redistricting and discriminatory lawsuits that have succeeded in states since 2022, including Alabama, Florida, Georgia, Louisiana and South Carolina. Lawsuits are still being deliberated in Texas.
So many people were worried about all the judges Trump appointed, and here they are again and again stabbing the GOP in the back.
At the start of 2023, the Fed had adopted a position somewhere in between these Braking and Deceleration. On one hand, and to their credit, they never fully embraced a hard Phillips curve view of inflation and the labor market. When Representative Ocasio-Cortez asked Powell about Summers’ theory that mass unemployment would be necessary to tame inflation, Powell declined to endorse those views:
Well whatever they are doing, it seems to be working.
Despite recent headlines declaring the industry stagnant or moribund, the U.S. electric-vehicle market is actually well past the tipping point for mass adoption — and its healthy sales growth underscores that.
Through the first nine months of the year, EV sales are up nearly 50 percent, already surpassing the full-year total for 2022. And if buyers continue to snap up EVs at the current clip, they’ll easily surpass 1 million annual sales for the first time ever.
“Ignore the gloomy headlines” may as well be the GNR motto at this point.
ust days before he would lead an unprecedented strike against the Big Three automakers, Shawn Fain, the president of the United Auto Workers, did something extraordinary.
Fain, a middle-aged, bespectacled man who could pass for a high school science teacher, was warning auto workers they would probably have to strike, citing resistance by automaker CEOs whose companies he said made “a quarter of a trillion dollars” in profits while they “nickel and dime our members every day.”
He then paused before saying, “Now I’m going to get personal.”
Fain started talking about his Christian faith. He cited scripture, including Matthew 17:20–21, where Jesus told his disciples that if they have faith the size of a mustard seed they can move mountains because “nothing will be impossible for you.” He said that for UAW members, organizing and making bold demands of automakers was “an act of faith in each other.”
“Great acts of faith are seldom born out of calm calculation,” added Fain, who often carries his grandmother’s Bible. “It wasn’t logic that caused Moses to raise his staff on the bank of the Red Sea. It wasn’t common sense that caused Paul to abandon the law and embrace grace. And it wasn’t a confident committee that prayed in a small room in Jerusalem for Peter’s release from prison. It was a fearful, desperate, band of believers that were backed into a corner.”
Fain’s faith did move a corporate mountain — three, to be exact. After a six-week campaign of strikes, the UAW reached a historic agreement with General Motors, Ford Motor Company and Chrysler-owner Stellantis that would give workers their biggest pay raise in decades. The victory (it still has to be ratified by UAW members) not only reinvigorated an emboldened labor movement in the US, it also marked the revival of another movement in America: the Social Gospel.
Just a reminder that not all Christians are bellowing jackasses, some of us are inspired by our faith to actually help people and do real good.
And on that note this week GNR draws to a close. Have a good week everyone. See you next Monday.