portrait

Weekend Reading 11/9/12

Boulder's carbon tax, Democratic profiles, and beautiful public lands
This post is 82 in the series: Weekend Reading

Anna:

Check out the official tumblr for the Bureau of Land Management. Beautiful photos and a peek into the lives of the “next generation of BLMers” as they share their experiences on the public lands.

Over at Colorlines, five racial justice leaders make sense of the 2012 elections.

Science communications guru Matthew Nisbet on the Nate Silver Era of election reporting (and news consumption) and how our obsession with polls and models hinders our ability to talk about substantive issues from climate change to inequality.

Alan:

Density and voting Democratic, the infographic.

A thoughtful and optimistic take on the US contraceptive future under Obamacare, courtesy of Sightline Trustee Valerie Tarico.

This New York Times opinion piece labels itself a “liberal fantasy,” but it’s not so much a fantasy as a possibility—that is, if the US Senate revises its rules in early January. Filibuster reform could create a majoritarian US Senate that can approve presidential nominees without compromises and can bargain with the House of Representatives without simultaneously bargaining with its own center-right, power-broker votes 56, 57, 58, 59, and 60. Everything depends on real filibuster reform: it matters as much as the November 6 election outcome mattered.

Majority Leader Reid says more about his filibuster reform plans. For each bill the Senate considers, Senators actually have three opportunities to filibuster. Reid wants to eliminate the first of those opportunities, called the “motion to proceed.” It would be a good step, in my view, but I’ve been hoping for more sweeping change. Senate rules provide so many opportunities for obstruction that eliminating the motion to proceed might simply move obstructionism from point A in the process to point B. In any event, the filibuster-reform effort marches on, strengthened by the election of six new US senators who are committed to reform.

Eric:

Via Charles Mudede, a fascinating article at Bloomberg on the role that Asians played in the presidential election:

Romney won among all voters making more than $100,000 a year by a margin of 54-44. Asian-Americans happen to be the highest-earning group in the US, out-earning whites, and they generally place enormous emphasis on family. A perfect fit for Republicans, no?

No. Asians voted for Obama by 73-26; they were more Democratic than Hispanics.

It’s a trend that is particularly relevant for the Northwest, where Asians are the second largest racial group behind whites in many large cities.

Speaking of the election, Boulder, Colorado produced one welcome result for climate hawks. The city’s voters approved a five-year extension of their carbon tax with an astonishing 82 percent voting in favor of it.

Public hearings on a coal export proposal near Bellingham have been drawing huge crowds of opponents. I thought this testimony by a young woman from China was particularly moving. Izzy describes the way that coal has ravaged her home province of Shanxi, and she wonders why Americans would want to contribute to the destruction.

Clark:

A nifty map: US states scaled by election spending per voter.

We are a community-supported resource and we can’t do this work without you!

Leave a Comment

Please keep it civil and constructive. Our editors reserve the right to monitor inappropriate comments and personal attacks.

*

You may add a link with HTML: <a href="URL">text to display</a>