tagged w/ Tim DeChristopher
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Eyes On Activism; PEnolan reports from the Big Apple each week.
This week; Free Marijuania? I’ll vote for that!, Ass@#$# of the week, Homeless in America , Tim DeChristopher and more..Weekly news video from Worldwide Hippies
In Depth News with a Difference. A Little... more
Thank you for the opportunity to speak before the court. When I first met Mr. Manross, the sentencing officer who prepared the presentence report, he explained that it was essentially his job to “get to know me.” He said he had to get to know who I really was and why I did what I didThank you for the opportunity to speak before the court. When I first met Mr. Manross,... more
On Dec. 19, 2008, a 27-year-old man named Tim DeChristopher, troubled by American energy policy and its contribution to global warming, broke the law.
He did so by attending a federal auction in Utah, where energy developers were bidding on parcels of Utah wildland that the Bush administration had made available for oil and gas development. DeChristopher bid aggressively, driving up the price of some parcels and winning 14 of his own -- some 22,000 acres in all -- to the tune of $1.8 million. He had no means to pay.
"I understand that prison is a very horrible place," DeChristopher told me last fall, when I had a chance to sit down with him for a lengthy interview. "But I've been scared for my future for a long time. And I think the scariest thing that I see is staying on the path that we're on right now. Obedience, to me, is much scarier than going to prison."
He faced 10 years and some $750,000 in fines.
On Tuesday, the now 29-year-old DeChristopher, who was convicted in March of two felonies associated with his exploits, was sentenced to two years in prison and was promptly taken into custody. He also faces $10,000 in fines.
The judge had barred DeChristopher's defense team from explaining to the jury why he disrupted the auction -- because he saw the auction as both illegal and contributing to the "exacerbation of global warming and climate change," according to court documents.
Continued>>http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/07/26/tim-dechristopher-civil-disobedience_n_910406.htmlOn Dec. 19, 2008, a 27-year-old man named Tim DeChristopher, troubled by American... more
Tim DeChristopher’s mouth — and not just his 2008 disruption of a federal oil and gas lease auction — landed him behind bars Tuesday, a judge said as he slapped the activist with a two-year prison term.Tim DeChristopher’s mouth — and not just his 2008 disruption of a federal... more
Tim DeChristopher is scheduled to be sentenced in a Salt Lake City courtroom by U.S. District Judge Dee Benson on July 26. He faces up to 10 years in prison and a $750,000 fine for fraudulently bidding in December 2008 on parcels of land,Tim DeChristopher is scheduled to be sentenced in a Salt Lake City courtroom by U.S.... more
Naomi Klein: Tim DeChristopher Guilty Verdict Exposes "Double Standard" of How "Oil and Gas Companies Privatize Profits...Externalize the Cost"
Environmental activist Tim DeChristopher was convicted last week of two felony counts for disrupting an auction of more than 100,000 acres of federal land for oil and gas drilling in December 2008. Award-winning journalist Naomi Klein talks about why she signed on to a public letter of support for DeChristopher. "What did Tim DeChristopher do wrong? They said that he participated in an auction and without the intention to pay," Klein says. "Oil and gas companies privatize the profits from their resource extraction but externalize the costs, being the pollution and the cleanup... Climate change [is] the biggest disaster of all and the highest price tag of all—this, created by the fossil fuel industries... They have no intention of paying that cost."Naomi Klein: Tim DeChristopher Guilty Verdict Exposes "Double Standard" of... more
As a wave of anti-union bills are introduced across the country in the wake of Wall Street financial crisis, many analysts are picking up on the theory that award-winning journalist and author Naomi Klein first argued in her 2007 bestselling book, The Shock Doctrine: The Rise of Disaster Capitalism. In the book, she reveals how those in power use times of crisis to push through undemocratic and extreme free market economic policies. “The Wisconsin protests are an incredible example of how to resist the shock doctrine,” Klein says. [includes rush transcript–partial]
Part 2 of the interview...Naomi Klein: Tim DeChristopher Guilty Verdict Exposes "Double Standard" of How "Oil and Gas Companies Privatize Profits...Externalize the Cost".
Part 3 .......“My Fear is that Climate Change is the Biggest Crisis of All”: Naomi Klein Warns Global Warming Could Be Exploited by Capitalism and Militarism.
http://www.democracynow.org/2011/3/9/my_fear_is_that_climate_changeAs a wave of anti-union bills are introduced across the country in the wake of Wall... more
by Sarah Laskow, Media Consortium blogger
SALT LAKE CITY, UT USA
Environmental activist Tim DeChristopher was convicted yesterday of two felony counts. DeChristopher was on trial for bidding on more than 22,000 acres of public land that he could not pay for: his two crimes are making false representations to the government and interfering with the land auction.
DeChristopher made the $1.79 million bid in order to “do something to try to resist the climate crisis,” he told Tina Gerhardt, in an interview published by AlterNet. But, as Kate Sheppard explains at Mother Jones, the judge threw out “the defense that his actions were necessary to prevent environmental damage on this land and, more broadly, the exacerbataion of climate change.”
“They’re hoping to make an example out of me.”
DeChristoper now faces the possibility of a $75,000 fine and 10 years in prison. In an interview with YES! Magazine’s Brooke Jarvis, before the trial started, DeChristopher said he had faced the possibility that he would be found guilty.
“There is still the possibility of acquittal, but I think the most likely scenario is probably that I will be convicted,” he told Jarvis. “The prosecution has been very clear that they’re hoping to make an example out of me, to convince other people not to fight the status quo.”
What is the status quo? Bureau of Land Management land, like the parcel DeChristopher bid on, is owned by the government, which often leases out the rights to develop the natural resources, like gas and oil, to private companies.
Up until 2003, the Department of the Interior had the option of setting aside some of its lands for preservation, pending final Congressional approval. But during the Bush administration, the DOI gave up that option and only considered uses like recreation or development for its holdings.
Back in December, the current Interior Secretary, Ken Salazar, reversed that policy, again putting on the table the option of using public lands for conservation purposes. But as I write at TAPPED, Republicans are throwing a hissy fit about the change.
Truth or consequence?
The Republicans’ argument goes something like: Using public lands for conservation will deprive Americans of jobs and hurt the bottom lines of states with large tracts of public lands. What they don’t discuss is the potential damage that drilling for, say, natural gas could cause. The Mulch has been writing about the dangers of hydrofracking for awhile now, but over the past week The New York Times began weighing in on the issue with a long series on the dangers of hydrofracking.
The Times‘ series brings even more evidence of hydrofracking’s dangers to light—in particular, about the radioactive waste materials being dumped into rivers where water quality is rarely monitored. As Christopher Mims reports at Grist, the series has already prompted calls for new testing from people like John Hanger, the former head of Pennsylvania’s environmental protection department, which has not been among the staunchest opponents of new drilling protects. According to Mims, Hanger has written that:
The Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection should order today all public water systems in Pennsylvania to test immediately for radium or radioactive pollutants and report as soon as good testing allows the results to the public. Only testing of the drinking water for these pollutants can resolve the issue raised by the NYT.
Or, as Mims puts it, “No one has any idea if the radioactive material in the wastewater from fracking is appearing downstream, in drinking water supplies, in quantities in excess of EPA recommendations.”
Tar and feather ‘em
Fracking is not the only environmentally destructive practice that the energy industry is increasingly relying on. Earth Island Journal has two pieces looking into the tar sands industry in Canada. Jason Mark’s piece is a great introduction to the history of the tar sands and takes a sharp look into the impact development has had on the community and the environment.
And Ron Johnson details the U.S.’s connection to the destruction: The federal government is considering approving a pipeline that would allow the oil from the tar sands to travel to Texas refineries. Johnson writes:
Green groups warn that the pipelines will keep North America and emerging economies hooked on oil from the Alberta tar sands for years to come. By greasing the crude’s path to market, the projects will encourage further reckless expansion of the tar sands. That would delay the transition to a renewable energy economy, while further degrading Canada’s boreal forests and spewing even more CO2 into the atmosphere.
A new regime
The decision to approve the pipeline lies with the executive branch. But all of Washington isn’t a particularly friendly place to green groups and their causes these days.
For example, as Care2’s Beth Buczynski reports, the newly empowered House Republicans have done away with one of the smallest green programs the Democrats put into place, an initiative to compost waste from House cafeterias. They’ve justified the cut by saying it was “too expensive,” but as Buczynski writes, “Spending must be dramatically reduced, yes, but also strategically. It’s interesting (and disheartening) to see which programs the new GOP House has targeted first.”
It’s a small thing, but it shows how committed Republicans are to the status quo: They’re not even willing to mulch their leftover salad.
This post features links to the best independent, progressive reporting about the environment by members of The Media Consortium. It is free to reprint. Visit the Mulch for a complete list of articles on environmental issues, or follow us on Twitter. And for the best progressive reporting on critical economy, health care and immigration issues, check out The Audit, The Pulse, and The Diaspora. This is a project of The Media Consortium, a network of leading independent media outlets.by Sarah Laskow, Media Consortium blogger
SALT LAKE CITY, UT USA
Well...he is a hero of sorts!
In case you didn't here about Tim DeChristopher: he's the 27-year-old economics student who objected to the auction of oil and gas drilling leases in southern and eastern Utah in early December and decided to to bid up prices by hundreds of thousands of dollars for some parcels and acquired about $1.8 million worth himself -- before it became clear that he had neither the means nor the slightest intention of paying for the leases. He threw the process into chaos, and bidding was briefly halted. Prosecutors are weighing possible fraud charges against him.
He's in need of raising 45K to pay for the initial cost of the bids that he won (due Jan 9th) and is forging a campaign asking everyone to donate 5$ and ask 5 friends to donate 5$).
His letter can be read below:
As you may have already heard, on December 19th I chose to disrupt the BLM oil and gas auction through an act of civil disobedience by bidding against participating oil & gas companies. I ended up "winning" the leases for 22,500 acres of beautiful land near Moab. You can find more details at www.bidder70.org.
The tremendous support I've received in response to my action was unexpected and utterly inspiring. Hundreds of people have contributed over $10,000 to my legal defense and to the $45,000 bond obligation for the leases. And countless others have expressed their solidarity and support for the long American tradition of meaningful civil disobedience.
In addition to the moving effect on me, this support has also opened up the real possibility of paying off the leases which I "won". The initial payment on this, required to secure the land, is around $45,000. After a good deal of struggling over this choice, I have decided to raise the money to secure the leases. With much advice from my legal team, it has become clear to me that making the down payment on the leases is the best way to protect the land until we can restore open, transparent and democratic procedures for determining the fate of valuable public lands.
It is still unclear how the new administration will deal with this inappropriate auction and the disruption I caused to it, but I can only hope the President Obama follows through on his promise for a transparent government. Until then I will make sure that no drilling or development happens on this land, and for that I need your help. This is an opportunity for all of us to make a clear statement of how much we care for our land, our climate and participatory democracy.
Please donate to help protect these 22,500 acres of wilderness (and reduce the chance of prison for me). Together we can protect this land and show that we are all willing to make the sacrifices necessary for a livable future.
Please forward this email on to as many people as you can and continue to spread the word of the need for critical action. Thank you for being a part of protecting the future for all of us.
Tim DeChristopherWell...he is a hero of sorts!
In case you didn't here about Tim... more
4 years ago