Archive: 10/2012

The Hunger Wars in Our Future

Heat, Drought, Rising Food Costs & Global Unrest

By Michael T. Klare

Scholar and activist Michael Klare has long been an inspiration to Nebraskans for Peace. His book War Without End, published as the Vietnam War was winding down, was influential in the development of NFP’s foreign policy analysis. In 1982, he actually came to Nebraska to speak at our Annual Peace Conference, delivering a talk on the topic of “U.S. Intervention: Back to Policing the World in the ’80s.” He has been a dependable ally in opposing the Pentagon’s expanded war-fighting efforts on earth and militarization of outer space (missions for which our own Strategic Command in Omaha is directly responsible). Now a Peace and World Security Studies professor at Hampshire College and the Five Colleges consortium in Amherst, Massachusetts, he has lately been focusing on the foolishness of our reliance on other countries for our energy supplies and our feckless overuse of fossil fuels.

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The War Election

by Paul Olson, NFP President Emeritus

Because Nebraskans for Peace is a 501(c)4 organization, we are limited by law in what we can do electorally.

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Mark Reynolds of Citizens Climate Lobby to Keynote 2012 Annual Peace Conference

With the state suffering through the worst drought on record (worse even than the “Dust Bowl” of the 1930s), Nebraskans are getting a personal initiation into the perils of climate change. Production agriculture in the Midwest is facing its poorest harvest in decades and worries are growing that—without massive snowfall this winter to replenish soil moisture—next year could be even worse. Skepticism about the science of global warming is being hourly supplanted by fears that climate change is already upon us and that our politicians in Washington aren’t providing any leadership.

Good thing, then, that the featured speaker for the 2012 Annual Peace Conference October 20 is a globally recognized expert at mobilizing citizens to lobby elected officials on climate legislation. Mark Reynolds, executive director of the “Citizens Climate Lobby,” will deliver the keynote address entitled, “Finding Our Voice in Democracy: Our Best Chance at Preventing Catastrophic Climate Change.”

Reynolds has extensive background in bringing citizens and officeholders together to find common ground on energy, environment and public policy. That face-to-face communication is central to the Citizens Climate Lobby’s mission of ending America’s reliance on carbon-based fuels. CCL’s proposed ‘fee and dividend’ policy would assess a progressively rising fee on fossil fuels at the border or domestic source and return the money directly to consumers to offset the increased energy costs. The higher price of oil, coal and natural gas, in turn, would make clean renewable energy sources like wind and solar competitive in the marketplace, propelling us toward a ‘green economy’ while simultaneously reducing the dangers of climate change. (For more information, see: www.citizensclimatelobby.org )

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Climate Change and Nebraska: What Does Our Future Hold?

Climate change will impact Urban and Rural areas, Agriculture, and Public Health – Can we anticipate the changes that are coming?

Climate change is real, and it is happening now. The change will affect every aspect of who we are and what we do. Quoting Omaha World-Herald columnist Erin Grace: “Climate change is here, so let's talk.” (August 8, 2012, OWH) Understanding what is happening, and how it will affect our home state, is vitally important.

“Climate change can’t be ignored any longer. We need to understand the effects of climate change so that we can make necessary changes, both to attempt to mitigate its effects, but also to adapt to the changes we will endure,” said Steve Andrews, Missouri Valley Sierra Club Chair.

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Gene Sharp receives 2012 Right Livelihood Award

Gene Sharp is Professor Emeritus of political science at the University of Massachusetts Dartmouth. He is known for his extensive writings on nonviolent struggle, which have influenced numerous anti-government resistance movements around the world.

The Albert Einstein Institution is pleased to announce that Senior Scholar Gene Sharp has won the Right Livelihood Award "for developing and articulating the core principles and strategies of nonviolent resistance and supporting their practical implementation in conflict areas around the world". The award will be presented in a ceremony at the Swedish Parliament on December 7, 2012 and carries a prize of $64,000 to continue the work of the Albert Einstein Institution.

Gene Sharp said:
"I have tried to explore why violence and oppression are so prevalent, how they can be controlled and diminished, and how an alternative type of realistic power can be applied in order to liberate oppressed people."
"It is a great honor for me to receive the Right Livelihood Award. This important award is another indication of the growing recognition that people can wield great power in the nonviolent assertion of their rights."

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