~ Compiled and written by Douglas John Imbrogno, WestVirginiaVille.com editor
How history may recall Joe Manchin, if he is recalled at all:
The Big Oil Man
“Manchin has taken more money from the fossil fuel industry than anyone else in DC. And the return on that investment has been enormous. Big Oil got its money’s worth a thousand times over.” ~ Bill McKibben
PS: McKibben on where we go from here: “One Joe Beat the Other. Now What? The Democratic Party finally got it together for climate action – almost.“
The Anti-Byrd Flies Free
The question is settled. After leaving billions of dollars on the table that would have come to West Virginia through the Build Back Better bill; after scuttling child tax credit benefits that directly lift West Virginia families he purports to represent up from poverty; after standing resolutely for the interests of the fading fossil fuel industry (his own interests, that is to say), Joe Manchin is most definitely the Anti-Byrd.
THE NEW YORK TIMES, JULY 15, 2022: “Senator Joe Manchin III of West Virginia, who took more campaign cash from the oil and gas industry than any other senator, and who became a millionaire from his family coal business, independently blew up the Democratic Party’s legislative plans to fight climate change. The swing Democratic vote in an evenly divided Senate, Mr. Manchin led his party through months of tortured negotiations that collapsed on Thursday night, a yearlong wild goose chase that produced nothing as the Earth warms to dangerous levels.”
Status Quo Joe
TED BOETTNER: “I remember during his first gubernatorial campaign, Monty Warner had advertisements calling Manchin ‘Status Quo Joe.‘ I think this was partly correct. I don’t think Manchin thinks there is anything fundamentally wrong with business as usual, and that the inequality we see today is just and acceptable.
“[His Senate predecessor, Robert C.] Byrd, at least partly, seemed to believe in a higher purpose beyond himself. I don’t see that with Manchin, who seems mostly motivated by financial interests and political gamesmanship. Manchin complained for years that nothing was getting done in Washington. And then, when he had a chance to get something done, he showed his true colors.”
~ from “REFLECTIONS: Ted Boettner on “Status Quo Joe” in the June 8, 2022 WestVirginiaVille.com. Boettner is a Senior Researcher at the Ohio River Valley Institute and founding executive director of the West Virginia Center on Budget and Policy.
Suffer the Children
~ Comment by Leah Stokes, a professor of environmental policy at the University of California Santa Barbara who has advised congressional Democrats on climate legislation, sobbing on Thursday night as she described the months of work she and other activists, scientists and legislative staff had poured into negotiations.
Whose pain is that you’re feeling?
Joe Manchin is one big, tall dude. But if the past six years have shown us anything, it is that one’s actual stature is reflected by what one does — and chooses not to do. When you do not — repeatedly and finally — stand up for the most significant climate legislation in a generation as the planet’s climate and weather systems begin to teeter wildly out of control, you are the opposite of a moral giant. What is that? A moral munchkin. Which is why we now propose the following hashtag: #JoeMunchkin
P.S.: What Sheldon and William said
And, so now, what? A possible short list: We elect enough new senators to forever consign Joe Manchin to a back bench of Senate shame and the dustbin of climate crisis history. We seek renewed alliances and new initiatives with actual allies and not Lucy-football-tricking attention addicts. We urge executive action by President Biden, as climate advocate and actual do-something senator Sheldon Whitehouse urges:
We also must take stock, move forward, and try new stuff. William Blake — yes, that dear, visionary, out-there William Blake — put it best more than 100 years
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