December 10, 2018

The Climate Is Doomed Without Brazil

“Jair Bolsonaro, the far-right nationalist who on Sunday was elected Brazil’s new president, has been called the “Brazilian Trump.” But he’s more extreme than that. His rhetoric is more explicitly violent and bigoted, and his rule threatens more than just the fourth-largest democracy in the world. The livability of the entire planet is at stake.

The Amazon rainforest, more than half of which is within Brazil’s borders, covers 4 percent of the earth’s surface and is a major regulator of the world’s climate. Its trees act as a sponge for carbon dioxide, absorbing the planet-warming gas from the atmosphere and re-emitting it as oxygen.

But Bolsonaro, according to HuffPost, “has committed to stop demarcating indigenous lands in the Amazon and further open the forest to mining interests. And he has pledged to loosen regulatory regimes over land-use and deforestation in the world’s largest tropical rainforest.” He also has strong ties to Brazilian agribusiness leaders who push for deforestation to make room for farming. He has said he’ll keep Brazil in the Paris climate agreement, but only if he can maintain control of the Amazon.”

Read more

JJ Best Of The Web

"With the weakest of hands, an economy not much larger than that of Spain, and a GDP per capita several thousand dollars smaller than Malaysia, he has asserted massive negative influence over the globalized world."

"Scarcely hours after the titanic drubbing Democrats delivered to President Trump's GOP in the 2018 midterm elections, the 2020 presidential campaign began in deeply unwelcome earnest."

"US President Donald Trump recognized Jerusalem as Israel's capital exactly one year ago, breaking with decades of international consensus in the process. What was the historic move and what impact has it had?"

"With a decade’s worth of hits under her belt, Gaga is definitively one of the biggest stars in the world. Rolling Stone dubbed her the “Queen of Pop” in 2011."

"Have the scars of the housing bust turned us away from the American dream of homeownership? Survey data suggest otherwise.... We simply can’t afford to pursue that dream right now.'

"Even as phones and tablets extend their reach into daily life, a bigger screen remains supreme... the average American household watches nearly eight hours of television a day."

"Parties, private jets, and multimillion-dollar paintings: Art Basel Miami is part of a global network of art fairs that have transformed the worldwide art market."

"Dutton Books for Young Readers, a division of Penguin Random House, is releasing a series of tiny books that give the act of reading a studied whimsy."

"The presence was so disruptive, she added, that some children had a hard time when their parents left. Others were disappointed that their parents did not come for lunch."

"The kitchen — named after the Hebrew phrase “L’Chaim,” which means, “To Life!” — features a menu of Americanized Jewish food items such as pastrami on rye, potato knish with herb sour cream..."

"Life on the sprawling grasslands precipitated a shift from individualistic ways of living to more cooperative ways. This was the birth of what you might call “social intelligence,” and it changed the way our minds work."

"When you have headlines about “white privilege” and “evil white men,” Jews become the epitome of whiteness—except, of course, for neo-Nazis, who see Jews as hyper-integrationists."