17 Jan '13, 10pm

If you want to pass climate legislation, fix U.S. politics

When pondering the failure of a big legislative initiative like cap-and-trade — and oh, there’s been so much pondering ! — there are two basic perspectives one can take. First, you can think about how a campaign could be improved so that next time the initiative can clear the bar. That’s mostly what my recent post-cap-and-trade piece (and the Theda Skocpol report [PDF] it discussed) focused on. Build a bigger movement, make the legislation simpler, get more help from the president, whatever. That kind of stuff. Alternatively, you can focus on how to lower the bar — how to make it easier to pass big, important legislation in general. That kind of focus has been rare among climate hawks. Activists and analysts are too inclined to simply accept the political landscape as it stands. But the fact is, it has become absurdly, anti-democratically difficult to get anything big done...

Full article: http://grist.org/politics/if-you-want-to-pass-climate-leg...

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