My thoughts on the top--and top-ish--stories in this week's political, sports, and pop culture news.
One wonders if the Missouri law makers who thought teen agers should be able to openly carry guns without adult supervision are themselves suffering from immature brain development! Clearly teen agers are not the only ones lacking full capacity to make rational decisions! And one also wonders why voters would continue to vote for these people to represent them!
I wonder if all the crazy republican book-banners will be banning the Heartland Institute’s “Climate at a Glance”?
Will you marry me? Your take on lab-raised meat made my heart sing. Thank you for including it in your report.
Hi Kareem. Happy Monday! After all the excitement of the Superbowl we need to wind down a bit. Begin the week with music. I started with Tom Waits, Joe Bonamassa, Chris Botti, Eric Gales, Gary Clark Jr & even a little James Brown. Then I started reading your new comments. There is no accounting for stupid. Never will be. OK for kids to open carry? Is this a plan to kill off people? Who comes up with these ideas? I've only been to Missouri once & it was a lovely state. What has happened? I wonder what Harry Truman would think about it. You know, the guy who had the saying on his desk "the buck stops here." Just unbelievable. My father was a hunter. Taught us, his 3 oldest daughters, how to shoot & handle guns at a very early age (I was about 6 or 7). And also taught us a very profound respect for & proper care of the weapons. The only comment about MO is don't come crying to anyone when deaths & destruction start happening. Just stupid.
Exxon. They have always lied. Why would anyone believe their stories. Remember the Exxon Valdez and the damage to Alaska's pristine waters and the fishing industry? And the coal industry. I was amazed that so much industry still uses coal. Dirty, filthy pollution it causes, disease & death in the mines.
Thank you for baby Joey & mama. Animal's natural affection for each other is so beautiful to watch.
And Dionne Warwick. What a beautiful rendition of a House is not a Home. I saw her at the Copacabana in 1970 when I was working in NYC. Great show.
May the rest of the week be pleasant and rewarding for you. And please tell us what are the balloons that the military is shooting down. Target practice? Pretty unbelievable.
The sun is shining today. Go outside & get a few rays.
A delightful pairing - Dionne Warwick and Burt Bacharach. I think she interpreted his songs better than anyone. So glad you closed with it….as for the rest - some days it’s just…oy…
In light of yesterday’s Super Bowl, and your insightful comments regarding the suit by NFL players, I’d like to point to an article from The New Yorker titled, “The Forgotten History of Head Injuries in Sports” which was published a few days ago. This article shows, like Exxon, how legions of sports companies/owners and schools rejected and buried strong evidence. Worth reading and a great companion to two of Kareem Abdul-Jabber’s insights today.
The Eurotrashy Social-Democratic portion of my brain (which the US was slightly closer to in the 70s,) understands all corporate bad actors - Exxon, Shell, hell, even the NFL - will never see reason. Nationalisation and an ensuing forced conversion to renewables (their engineers have the skill set) is the only answer. That, however, is the corporate version of the N word.
I had read about this new way of growing meat and if it really does scale the way they promise it will, it's fantastic. I'll be able to eat octopus without feeling horribly guilty (I have cut down to once in a blue moon.)
I am so happy you mentioned 'Raindrops...' The Guardian managed to leave it out. Young people nowadays...
Kareem, I am a huge supporter. I respect you and I know your heart is in a great place and you are forever intellectually curious. I want to be your climate chaos buddy. To that end, I want to suggest that when you look back a couple of years from now, you will recognize this statement you made as rather foolish, uninformed and unhelpful as humanity belatedly fights against the most implacable enemy it has ever faced,
“Nothing turns people off quicker than mentioning “the environment” or “climate change.” Those people who are passionate in bring about awareness or who are actively fighting to prevent a looming global environmental disaster are often characterized as too passionate.”
As Samuel Clemens said: It ain't so much the things that people don't know that makes trouble in this world, as it is the things that people know that ain't so. — Mark Twain
Climate breakdown is a unicorn – as a problem it is of a completely different magnitude than any others. You cannot unmelt glaciers. You cannot un-rise the oceans. These are tipping point problems we know of – what about other impacts such as total disruption of the global ocean currents, or the jet stream? Put all the “isms” you can think of in a bag and as problems for humanity it would be microscopic in magnitude compared to climate. We’ll probably see several feet of AVERAGE sea level rise in our lifetime – between now and 2050.
Anyone notice what the biggest blockbuster film was for Netflix in 2021? How many millions of households streamed the climate farce Don’t Look Up?
The more important point I want to make is that your comment said a lot about the circles you travel in. Obviously there are several cohorts you don’t communicate with, two obvious ones being a cross-section of youth, and scientists.
I challenge you to attend any primary, secondary, high school or college science class and witness how concerned these young people are, who know damn well that 80% of their future will be dealing with the chaos of climate breakdown, biodiversity loss, food destruction, and deadly political conflicts caused by a rise in authoritarianism as an angry reaction to climate migration from the global south. As always the poorer communities, mostly those of people of color will suffer the first and the most. I suggest checking out two youth groups – Youth vs Apocalypse and the Sunrise Movement. Maybe invite one of their leaders to contribute a guest essay on youth perspectives on climate and the fact that our (many quite elderly) politicians are still not addressing the problem with nearly the urgency it must be. The ability to make a smooth transition to renewable power is a ship that sailed a long time ago, first and foremost due to the stunning greed and nihilism of the fossil fuel industry. Yet they’ve been able to whitewash their reputation, posing as saviors of Ukraine and western Europe, while also gouging consumers for gasoline and reaping the most profits in their history over the last year or so, thanks to this terrible war which has done so much damage to the climate fight.
Scientists: As a general rule scientists are introverts. They don’t pursue their painstaking passion to become wealthy, famous or to compete for the world’s sexiest man/woman title. But over the last couple of years, faced with ever more terrifying climate data, many of them have decided to storm the barricades and put their physical selves on the line. Respected scientists like Dr. Peter Kalmus is one – here’s an article: https://www.nytimes.com/2022/11/10/us/private-jets-climate-protests-airport.html
Another scientist/writer fellow substacker is Bill McKibben who wrote one of the first climate books of the modern era, “The End of Nature” in 1989. He would be an excellent person with whom you could intellectually cavort. He was one of the founders of 350.org, and his new group, The Third Act is inhabited by people age 60 and older. They and their allies are organizing a huge nationwide, possibly worldwide demonstration against the big corporate banks which are funding so much climate destruction on the palindromatic date 3-2-1-2-3 (March 21).
I’d love to see you two guest host on each other’s substack. In closing I am not attacking you, I an urging you to turn it up, and offering to provide any linkages to personages or sources of info regarding this subject matter.
"The meatball was succulent, the bacon was crisp and, even to a vegetarian, both had the undeniable quality of meat."
As a hard-core carnivore, I'm not really concerned whether a vegetarian says they meatball and bacon had the undeniable quality of meat. If we reach a point when my fellow meat lovers say that, I will listen.
Thank you for including the video of the mother Joey loving her child. Viewing it made me feel so good. To quote a famous songwriter, "what the world needs now is love, sweet love".
Thank you for being such a voice for civil rights, and rational discourse about the issues you write about. I have admired you since your days at UCLA, and you have become such an amazing force for good. I tell my students, many of them African American teenagers who play for our school basketball team that they need to follow you and read your books. They are good kids and talented ball players, and many are very smart. However, most know so little about the African American experience. Thankfully, I am somewhat a subject matter expert, growing up in the 1960s and 1970s, being part of the first class to go through court ordered desegregation in Stockton, CA, having a Black roommate at Cal State Northridge, and having lived in predominantly Black or mixed race neighborhoods much of my life. We retired from the Navy in December 2020 and bought a home in Norfolk Virginia’s historic North Berkley neighborhood. It is a historical Black section of Norfolk, and one of the safest places to live in the city. We feel more comfortable there than almost any place we have ever lived, and have such wonderful neighbors. People know each other and look out for each other. It’s not like White suburbia. Anyway, I kind of chased that rabbit, but what I was saying is that I am also a historian and that my book, “Mine Eyes Have Seen the Glory: Religion and the Politics of Race in the Civil War and Beyond” was published by Potomac Books, an imprint of the University of Nebraska Press last October. I would love to send you an inscribed copy. How do I do that?
Thank you for all that you do. Please keep up your great work.
yup...now ill have to change the name of my thread or....pretend im eating cloned pork products....thanks ALOT Kareem! lol
btw have you read Seymour Hersh story on Substack about US blowing up Nord Stream pipeline and if so love to hear your opinion if in fact its true (i believe it is for most part and perhaps not terribly shocking...)
How the oil industry’s failure to disclose what it knew of the environmental consequences of its operations is anything other than securities fraud is a mystery to me.
What can I say Kareem? But once again you amaze us with your deep thinking, and insight
You’re a man who is not afraid to be wrong
Speaks out on issues that aren’t popular (except you are silent on Israeli atrocities- I understand they will lay scarlet letter on you the big A for antisemitism, which will surely be your death knell) that not withstanding you are a candle in the darkness your take on animals is spot on. Thank you for your thoughtful articles I will go so far as to propose that middle schools and high schools integrate your writing as part of their lesson plan in social studies
thank you for your honest perspective on the sundry issues that we face today.
Why are we always so surprised when student athletes are sexually abused by coaches or staff? It is estimated that 1 in 3 women worldwide are sexually (physically abused) in their life times and 1 in 6 men. This is just the most visible of us that have been abused. Since I started leading workshops for women 44 years ago 40-60% of women in the workshops have been abused and I have trained thousands of women worldwide. Most sexually abused, by the way. This abuse stays with them well past the actually event. It harms them in their entire lives for their entire lives. We need to stop being surprised and attack the root causes of this abomination.
I'd never heard Dionne Warwick sing that song, A House is not Home, and I have listened to many of her songs.
I'm so glad I got to hear this before I die....
Thank you, thank you.
Not to put any responsibility on your shoulder Mr. Abdul-Jabbar, but your blog (?) is about the only thing that keeps me sane in this insane world.