Bring on the global governance: form of environmental regulatory infrastructure

Posted on September 28th, 2009 by bile
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A major environmental disaster may no longer be a question of if, but when, according to a growing number of leading scientists. The multiple threats posed by unrestricted climate change, ozone depletion, and pollution, among others, has made the need for some form of global regulatory infrastructure more urgent than ever. Yet, as the recent G20 summit climate talks made resoundingly clear, the road there will be long, arduous, and full of half-hearted compromises.

Not surprising… just frustrating. This problem can be fixed through the re-enforcement of private property rights. Stop allowing the government to pollute, stop allowing the government to give passes to individuals to pollute, and turn over government owned land to the private sector to foster real, natural incentives to protect that land.

Gordon Brown: the socialist new world order is on its way

Posted on April 2nd, 2009 by bile
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Man Dies While Being Detained in G20 Protest

Posted on April 2nd, 2009 by bosco
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During the G20 protest a man collapsed and later died after being corned by police. Police say they were unable to assist him because bottles or possibly other projectiles were being thrown at them. The man was a member of a group caught up in a “kettle” established by the police. The process as well as the outcome is described in this quote:

They used familiar tactics to trap 4,000 people into streets outside the Bank of England in a practice known as “kettling”, tightening the cordon when violence flared in one part of Threadneedle Street and a group of protesters, whose faces were covered, broke into the Royal Bank of Scotland.
Commander Bob Broadhurst, in charge of the operation, said his aim was to facilitate peaceful protest. But those peaceful demonstrators caught inside the cordon with no toilet facilities, and little water, questioned the idea that they were being allowed to exercise their right to march.

It seems some were contained in this “kettle” for up to 7 hours. Someone who was detained by the police is also quoted in the article:

“I was kept for two hours. Lines of police lined up with their batons and they were completely pumped up and looking to have a go. My feeling was everyone in there was peaceful but they wanted to clear them out.” Responding to the police use of the kettling technique she said that although the courts had ruled that it was legal, there had to be a good reason. “I asked one officer could I go and he said no – I might to and cause trouble. I giggled and said that wasn’t very likely and he said, ‘you can never tell with these people’.”

It is unfortunate that the police use this violent tactic to limit an individual’s movement. While the water may be muddied by acts of violence taken by individual protesters, a communal punishment is certainly not the answer. It is also worth noting that riot police have an established history of wanting to “crack skulls” and teach protesters a lesson. The lesson being that you are not free to assemble and say whatever you want to say. I believe these tactics will lead to an increase in violence, much like beating a cornered dog who’s already pissed off at you and trying his hardest not to bite.

UPDATE: Here is a really good article with pictures and some personal accounts.

UPDATE 2: MRZine has picked up the story with an article of their own. It includes a reporters commentary in spanish.

Coverage of the G20 protests

Posted on April 1st, 2009 by bile
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Around lunchtime, riot police had to be sent in after activists attacked a uniformed officer and stormed a branch of the Royal Bank of Scotland in the City.

A handful of men with black scarves obscuring their faces and hoods over their heads smashed a hole in the windows with a metal pole and crawled in.

Protesters removed equipment, daubed graffiti on the walls, threw a chair through a window and started a small fire.

Police entered the branch at around 2pm and shortly afterwards began driving demonstrators away from the branch, which had earlier been closed by RBS.

Officers on foot backed up by a line of mounted officers lined up outside the building as smoke bombs were thrown by a baying crowd.

More than 4,000 demonstrators, most of them peaceful, gathered near the Bank of England to demand action from world leaders ahead of the G20 summit.

But several hundred clashed with police, who were pelted with eggs, paint bombs and empty beer cans.

One of the videos on Sky I saw showed a young woman saying that the march was to show solidarity for the homeless. Why not go out and help them clean themselves up, create a resume and submit it to businesses. Or get together with others and start a business. Showing solidarity doesn’t feed, cloth or shelter people. Instead of bitching why don’t you act?