China, The U.S. and Energy — a Tomgram Declining America Report by Michael Klare

Twenty-First Century Energy Superpower
China, Energy, and Global Power

Rising Powers, Shrinking Planet by Michael Klare

By Michael T. Klare

If you want to know which way the global wind is blowing (or the sun shining or the coal burning), watch China.  That’s the news for our energy future and for the future of great-power politics on planet Earth.  Washington is already watching — with anxiety.

Rarely has a simple press interview said more about the global power shifts taking place in our world.  On July 20th, the chief economist of the International Energy Agency (IEA), Fatih Birol, told the Wall Street Journal that China had overtaken the United States to become the world’s number one energy consumer.  One can read this development in many ways: as evidence of China’s continuing industrial prowess, of the lingering recession in the United States, of the growing popularity of automobiles in China, even of America’s superior energy efficiency as compared to that of China.  All of these observations are valid, but all miss the main point: by becoming the world’s leading energy consumer, China will also become an ever more dominant international actor and so set the pace in shaping our global future.

Because energy is tied to so many aspects of the global economy, and because doubts are growing about the future availability of oil and other vital fuels, the decisions China makes regarding its energy portfolio will have far-reaching consequences.  As the leading player in the global energy market, China will significantly determine not only the prices we will be paying for critical fuels but also the type of energy systems we will come to rely on.  More importantly, China’s decisions on energy preferences will largely determine whether China and the United States can avoid becoming embroiled in a global struggle over imported oil and whether the world will escape catastrophic climate change.

How to Rise to Global Preeminence

You can’t really appreciate the significance of China’s newfound energy prominence if you don’t first grasp the role of energy in America’s rise to global preeminence. Read more here.

The School Board, The Police, and The Parents — from Substance News

[The Chicago School Board called on the Chicago police to enforce their ruling to demolish a building parents want to be used as a library! This is NOT a story from The Onion.  The following report, from Substance News, explains the context.  As of Saturday, September 18, the parents were holding steady.  Those who are able are encouraged to visit Camp Whittier to offer encouragement, bring donations of food and drink, and spend time to show the city that these parents are not alone. Note also at the bottom of this entry two related items of importance. — Lew Rosenbaum]

Community breaks police blockade, ‘Camp Whittier’ gets a third night to demand a library for the children

George N. Schmidt – September 17, 2010

It could have been a scene from the blacklisted movie “Salt of the Earth,” or from any of a dozen other films that depict the struggles of working people. But it was happening in real time in Chicago in 2010, and once again a group of working people, most of them women and children, broke a police blockade and thwarted attempts by Ron Huberman and the people who rule Chicago’s public schools to demolish a simple wooden building just west of the century old Whittier Elementary School on Chicago’s Southwest side.

Part of the crowd celebrating the departure of Chicago police from the Whittier Elementary School field house at approximately 3:00 p.m. on September 17, 2010. The protesters above had defied a police cordon and swarmed down 23rd St. to the site of the protest just before police were to move in and arrest the mothers who had been occupying the field house for two nights and days. Substance photo by George N. Schmidt.

The stage had been set all day, as Chicago police, acting on orders from two Chicago Public Schools officials, CPS Communications Chief Monique Bond and CPS Security Chief Michael Shields, prepared to arrest a small group of protesters, most of them mothers, who had occupied the Whittier Elementary School fieldhouse in the 1900 block of west 23rd St., to stop the demolition of the structure. The community wants the building turned into a library. The Board of Education wants to demolish and turn into a soccer field primarily for the use of a parochial school (Cristo Rey) nearby.

The word had spread at “Camp Whittier” that the Chicago police were going to force the protesters out of the Whitter field house and arrest those who refused to leave. (Read the entire story here)

Note also:  Labor Express Radio (WLUW 10 AM Monday) will have a report from Camp Whittier:
On this Monday’s episode of Labor Express Radio

The back to school edition of Labor Express Radio. First will hear about the Siege of La Casita. For most of the past week, parents of children at the Whittier school in Chicago’s Pilsen neighborhood and their community allies, have occupied a field house on the school’s grounds day and night. CPS plans to demolish the building which is used currently used as an activity center for the school’s children. On Friday, the parents faced off with the Chicago Police and in the end it was the police who retreated.

Will also hear about a planned rally by the Chicago Teachers Union for downtown Chicago next Tuesday and about organizing of charter school teachers in the city.

And lastly will hear about plans for a massive march planned for Washington D.C. Oct. 2nd demanding money for jobs and not war.

Also : Rally for Education Rights
Chicago Parents and Teachers, Unite!

Tuesday, September 21
4:00 PM at Daley Plaza
Washington & Dearborn Streets
Across from City Hall

Chicago Educators, Parents, and Students Demand:

  • Mayor Daley give $350 million in TIF surplus back to schools!
  • CPS end overcrowding and guarantee stable classes!
  • The Board rehire 1,000 seasoned educators with the Federal Education Jobs Bill funds!
  • The Board stop turnarounds and closings and promote school safety.

For more information please contact: