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Open Thread: What are you reading?

It's bad karma chameleon time.


A kangaroo and her joey in the wake of the 2020 Australian bushfires. Credit: Jo-Anne MacArthur

I went out last night and interacted with humans in person at a Data for Progress happy hour at a rooftop bar, which was attended by several Hill Heat subscribers, even some of the paying ones! (Thank you!) That might be connected to this newsletter not arriving in your inbox first thing in the morning.

It was lovely to see old friends and make new acquaintances. People are worried about fascism. Good thing to be concerned about! I recommended to several folks that they read White Skin, Black Fuel: On the Danger of Fossil Fascism by Andreas Malm and the Zetkin Collective. It’s really helped me have a better handle on the contours of historical and present-day fascistic politics.

This chameleon kills fascists. Credit: Gurumoorthy K

The very good people at Oil Change International, Earthworks and the Center for International Environmental Law dropped another chapter of their mega-project Permian Climate Bomb, a multi-part multimedia series on the meteoric rise in oil and gas extraction from west Texas, unleashed by a new system of liquid natural gas and oil exports. This “story of runaway toxic infrastructure, environmental injustice, and climate overshoot” is very worth your time. The reportage is linked with a comprehensive campaign to defuse the bomb by passing the Break Free From Plastic Pollution Act, denying new oil and gas permits, banning fracking, ending new drilling on public lands, and supporting the grassroots community resistance.

An Arctic fox in Spitsbergen, Svalbard, at thirty degress below zero. Credit: Marco Gaotti

The carbon bombs of yesteryear are now going off: A record-shattering, fossil-fueled heatwave has brought heat up to 35 degrees above the already global-warming-influenced normal from the Pacific Northwest through the Dakotas—heat paleoclimatologist Cathy Whitlock says has not been seen in December for over 10,000 years. This freak heat, environmental journalist Jim Robbins writes, has sparked a series of “unusual” December prairie fires in Montana, fueled by the coal, oil, and gas fracked and mined out of the region.

Friday is Open Thread day! I’d really love to know what people are reading or have read recently and recommend. I’m continuing my Andreas Malm kick right now with Corona, Climate, Chronic Emergency: War Communism in the Twenty-first Century, a gripping account of the roots of climate destruction and pandemic:

"It is unrestrained capital accumulation that so violently shakes the tree where bats and other animals live. Out falls a drizzle of viruses."

What are you reading?

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