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Bill McKibben on Hurricane Sandy and Climate Change

Reactions to Hurricane Sandy range from panic to classic New York defiance - and the aptly titled "Frankenstorm" since it's a fairly unprecedented monster. But there's no denying the timing of the storm as it bares down on the East Coast a week before Election Day, making the fact that climate change has been ignored during the Presidential campaign seem even more twisted.

Amy Goodman from Democracy Now reports on the hurricane from the road in Medford, Oregon - after a weekend stop-off in Spokane -  interviewing Bill McKibben.

From the Democracy Now transcript: Much of the East Coast is shut down today as residents prepare for Hurricane Sandy, a massive storm that could impact up to 50 million people from the Carolinas to Boston. The storm has already killed 66 people in the Caribbean, where it battered Haiti and Cuba. "This thing is stitched together from elements natural and unnatural, and it seems poised to cause real havoc," says Bill McKibben, founder of 350.org. New York and other cities have shut down schools and transit systems. Hundreds of thousands of people have already been evacuated. Millions could lose power over the next day. Meteorologists say Sandy could be the largest storm ever to hit the U.S. mainland. The megastorm comes at a time when President Obama and Republican challenger Mitt Romney have refused to make climate change an issue on the campaign trail. For the first time since 1984, climate change was never addressed during a presidential debate. "It’s really important that everybody, even those who aren’t in the kind of path of this storm, reflect about what it means that in the warmest year in U.S. history, … in a year when we saw, essentially, summer sea ice in the Arctic just vanish before our eyes, what it means that we’re now seeing storms of this unprecedented magnitude," McKibben says. "If there was ever a wake-up call, this is it." We’re also joined by climate scientist Greg Jones from Southern Oregon University.

Saturday night: Goodman at SFCC

For those who crave politics on a Saturday night rather than football, a movie or bad television, Spokane Falls Community College will be the place to be this week.

Amy Goodman, whose columns appear in The Spokesman-Review (her most recent is here), will be at the Music Building as part of her Democracy Now! tour. Goodman has been on the road since the Republican National Convention in August, and plans to keep going until Election Day. She's spent a fair amount of time in swing states, and while neither Washington nor Idaho fall linto that category, the trail brings her here at 7 p.m. Saturday.

Tickets are $15 for general admission, $5 for students with an ID. Proceeds go to help support KYRS-Thin Air Community Radio.

WikiLeaks reveals U.S. manipulated climate talks in Copenhagen


Last year, this blog spent so much time discussing the climate conference in Copenhagen, readers thought Down To Earth was in Denmark. Fast forward a year later and the end result didn’t net anything more than talk. But now, secret diplomatic cables released by the omnipotent journalist known as WikiLeaks revealed the U.S. special climate change envoy was going to withhold funds to countries like Ecuador and Bolivia, when they refused to sign on to the Copenhagen Accord and dug some dirt on nations opposed to their way of tackling global warming.

Amy Goodman interviews Guardian Environment Editor John Vidal on this fascinating story at Democracy Now. After the jump is an excerpt.