Archive for December, 2009
Tis the season to be silly, and whilst I’d hate to perpetuate cycles of violence, this whole “Iran threatens to slap Britain” thing sounds like too much fun to miss out on. This post is intended to be light-hearted and slightly sarcastic, so please don’t take it too seriously, after all, when governments slap, its usually the poor that suffer… (more…)
I tried to not put too much emphasis on this in the last post, but I think its worth taking a broad and all encompassing view of what happened, one that doesn’t divide the repression on the streets from either the actions of the Danish Government and United Nations staff inside the negotiations or from the issue of Climate Change.
So I guess I should tell something of the outside story. Its not really my story, but rather an attempt to give a bigger picture based in part on what I saw myself. Copenhagen was a coming-out ceremony for the Global Climate Justice Movement, and presented its own challenges, even without the ridiculous intervention of the police.
I’ve finally managed to sit at a desk long enough and with few enough distractions to begin writing out my review of Copenhagen. As such, I imagine it might come in several parts. Here I’ll attempt to review the internal process, which I didn’t see first hand, but which was presented to me daily by numerous people who had been there a few hours before their presentation.
Dear all, my sincerest apologies for the day’s delay in getting this to you. In part, its because its only 4 days since I returned from Copenhagen. It was the summation of a very busy, and often bizarre, year. Its had its ups and downs, as they all do, of which I shall attempt to cover the highlights briefly, before looking ahead to the dramatic changes 2010 is going to bring to my life.
I’ll get to some proper analysis, but this seems to be one of the most current debates post-Copenhagen, so I thought I’d get my response out whilst its still current. An emerging problem during the Climate talks has been the role of the BASIC countries, a relatively huge power bloc consisting of just 4 countries: “Brazil, South Africa, India and China”. They aren’t part of “the West”. But they’re also very very different from the totally-disempowered countries of “the Global South” as we used to understand them. Are they the problem, the solution, or just a headache?
I was planning on writing something entirely of my own, but in the lack of time, overwhelming tiredness and general desire not to reinvent the wheel, I’m going to republish the statement of Tord Bjork, Friends of the Earth Sweden, relating to the arrest and continuing detention of my friend Tadzio Muller, a registered delegate at the UN conference, an academic and media spokesperson, facing charges supposed to be for inciting riot, but really focused on his involvement in highlighting the bankruptcy of the negotiating.
This isn’t going to be coherent, but it should at least be worth reading (I hope!). I’ve been here for just over 24 hours and have already seen quite a bit of the layout of preparations from the actions which started today with affinity-group actions against the corporate take over of the climate issue. I’ve also managed to take a shower. This is an important fact!
Whilst York is by no means the most flood-affected city in the UK at this time, the rising and falling of the Ouse has long fascinated me. And with all the city’s flood defences in the ‘raised’ or ‘closed’ positions, now is the time to remember that, no matter what we in the Western World have deluded ourselves into thinking, ultimately, we’ll never truly tame nature.