The Rebellion’s Press Release

As a tactical matter, one would think that a serious rebellion would use surprise. After all, if you know in advance of a rebellion, the powers that be would be positioned to thwart it, put it down. But not this rebellion. Instead, it issued a press release.

Media Advisory

For Immediate Release
April 11, 2019

Extinction Rebellion:

Rebel Actions in 30+ Cities

April 15 – 22

There’s something about a media advisory for “immediate release” that doesn’t strike me as particularly rebel-ish. So what are they rebelling against?

USA, April 15 – 22 – Extinction Rebellion’s International Rebellion will break out across every continent on Earth, barring Antarctica, including the U.S. Rebels in 49 countries are demanding their governments take decisive action on climate change.

WHAT: Bold and creative acts of Rebellion, including blockades, demonstrations, and other forms of disruption are planned in at least 35 cities across the country next week to build capacity to force the US Government to take action and stop climate change.

Climate change is certainly in the air, so the cause isn’t exactly a surprise, even though the New Green Deal goes unmentioned, apparently not the solution they embrace. Of course, what to do is left unsaid, though they do say they’re going to take “bold and creative acts of Rebellion.” Blockades? Demonstrations? Other forms of disruption? Sounds like they’re full up on annoying people, which tends to be curious means of persuasion if their purpose is to create a consensus that government needs to confront climate change. Then again, they aren’t asking for change. They’re “demanding” it.

The name “Extinction Rebellion” sounds pretty serious. Nobody wants to go extinct, and nobody familiar with the issue doubts that we’ve fouled our environment to the point of seriously harmful change. Whether this spells extinction isn’t entirely clear, given that carbon emissions from bovine backsides is both huge and uncontrollable. Try to get a cow to control its flatulence.

At the website for the Rebellion — because what’s a rebellion without a website? —  it’s got more to say. It demands that the government, together with its lackeys in the media, admit the truth about climate change and “enact legally-binding policies to reduce carbon emissions to net zero by 2025.” But they aren’t leaving it in the hands of the politicians.

We do not trust our Government to make the bold, swift and long-term changes necessary to achieve these changes and we do not intend to hand further power to our politicians. Instead we demand a Citizens’ Assembly to oversee the changes, as we rise from the wreckage, creating a democracy fit for purpose.

While it’s unclear what “fit for purpose” means, what is clear is that they’re unfamiliar with the meaning of the word “democracy.” As if this Citizens’ Assembly is somehow different from the existing Citizens’ Assembly known as Congress.

But like the new inspirational voice of the Democrats, the rebels too connect dots the olds can’t see to extend their demand beyond the mere reaches of climate change into . . . everything else.

We demand a just transition that prioritizes the most vulnerable people and indigenous sovereignty; establishes reparations and remediation led by and for Black people, Indigenous people, people of color and poor communities for years of environmental injustice, establishes legal rights for ecosystems to thrive and regenerate in perpetuity, and repairs the effects of ongoing ecocide to prevent extinction of human and all species, in order to maintain a livable, just planet for all.

This might be one of the most adorable press releases I’ve gotten, the piss and passion of youthful exuberance reflecting an excess of passion and a dearth of substance. Words that inspire hope in the future, provided you aspire to live in a yurt. Except this isn’t really all that far off from what some who have been elected to Congress want to do, which makes it slightly less adorable and more bewildering. Is this the alternative to Darth Cheeto?

But they take themselves seriously, as a click on their website informed me.

Well, no, I am not prepared to be arrested, at least not for this. And I have some issues with a rebellion that requires a cell phone to join. Does that mean I can’t rebel with a landline? As far as the amount of time I’m willing to commit to the cause, the time it takes to write this post pretty much maxes it out.

More than a decade ago, as the financial crisis crushed young people’s American dream of a decent job, a house, a financially secure future, I was slightly critical of their lack of political awareness and involvement. Their demands were about them, and their activism consisted of griping about how they did everything right and were left empty-handed.

On the bright side, young people have, in the past decade, become extremely engaged politically. But on the dark side, their passion is more directed toward empty demands and threats of rebellion. When the meteor strikes earth, it will not affect women and minorities most. And should this group of passionate rebels blockade traffic on Tenth Avenue, it will not cause government to capitulate to their demands. It will just annoy the hell out of people going about their lives.

But at least they’re savvy enough to send out a press release, so when traffic comes to a standstill, you’ll know why.

43 thoughts on “The Rebellion’s Press Release

      1. Guitardave

        LOL…”by their fruits ye shall throw up in your mouth a little..”

        ‘what do you got’ makes a hell of a lot more sense than believing that…
        a. the sky is falling..
        b. the ‘government’ can actually fix things..
        c. that pissing off the people who wipe your entitled asses will cause (b) to suddenly have mad skills on (a)…
        I think we really should give them all a ‘participation trophy’ for their tireless work on redefining the parameters of stupid.

        Reply
  1. WFG

    A Citizens’ Assembly? That’s a terrible name.

    They ought to have gone with something with some real street cred, to drive home the fact that they mean business. Something to put the Terror into the hearts of their enemies.

    Call it The Committee of Public Safety instead, and you’ll get the hot-blooded young revolutionaries lined up around the street to join.

    Reply
  2. Richard Kopf

    SHG,

    You mentioned cattle flatulence as contributing to climate change and thus a concern of the rebellion. But those who would ban cattle flatulence don’t understand its monetary value to ordinary Americans lawyers. So, the rebellion will have to take cattle flatulence from my cold dead nostrils.

    You see cattle flatulence once earned me a nice fat fee. After a trial, we won for our client the right to scrape out and truck away all the manure in a large cattle feed lot. Preparatory to the thousand or so cattle laying down that golden manure there was, of bovine biologic necessity, flatulence.

    Cattle flatulence once earned my friend and former Chief Judge of the Eighth Circuit a nice fee as well. In a case tried before me, he successfully defended a patent infringement claim put to a jury regarding a manure spreader. And, again, you can’t have manure to spread without the flatulence that moves the bowels of the bovine.

    In short, the rebellion is BS. That’s all, have a good day!

    Reply
    1. SHG Post author

      As I sit here and ponder which of the many jokes I could make in reply, I’ve decided that dignity should prevail despite your being an old fart.

      Reply
    2. Guitardave

      Judge Kopf,
      If your ever traveling on the east coast and you get tired of that New Jersey smell, your welcome to stop by for a visit in good old Lancaster Co. PA We can revive those old nostrils to full functionality, guaranteed.
      Regards. GD

      Reply
      1. Richard G. Kopf

        Thanks GD. Very kind. However, I have a rule. Never travel past Cleveland.

        On the other hand, and I truly mean it, if you (and yours) are ever out this way come see us. I have season tickets to the football games and womens’ volleyball matches. Good steaks too. Perhaps even a trip to the Germans From Russia museum. When Losing Trader visited, not even he got that adventure.

        All the best.

        RGK

        Reply
        1. Guitardave

          Judge Kopf, Thank you for the most kind offer. If i get tired of this starving artist/craftsman gig and go truckin’ again, i just might stop by. Back when i drove, i always preferred the trips going south and west…felt more like home. GD

          Scott, Lmao……so much for “Cleveland rocks”..

          Reply
    1. LocoYokel

      They’re so cute trying to look all tough and bad-ass. Someone give them a cookie and send them home. Both the pic above and the subjects of this post.

      Reply
  3. John Barleycorn

    Correlation fallacy.

    P.S. Do you miss the draft or your CB radio more? Did you even have a CB radio? Oh shit tell me it is not the eight tracks?

    Reply
  4. B. McLeod

    Obviously, that “Tenth Avenue” clip should have trigger warnings, because of the rampant objectification, the gun violence, and the sexual assault on the dead woman (who could not consent).

    Reply
    1. SHG Post author

      We played that song when I was drum captain in my high school marching band at a national marching band competition. I was given a starter’s pistol, to pull out of my tunic at the precise moment and shoot the drum major. I did as required, and a state trooper doing security was watching, pulled his weapon, aimed it at me and screamed “drop the weapon.” True fact.

      Reply
      1. L. Phillips

        Since you are blogging all these years later I assume you dropped it. Hopefully the same trooper or one of his superiors had a chat with the knucklehead bandmaster who came up that idea.

        Just out of curiosity, was the trooper carrying a revolver? Us old buzzards enjoy strange bits of nostalgia.

        Reply
        1. SHG Post author

          You bet I dropped it. I was young, but I wasn’t ready to die to win the competition. I can’t recall what type of gun he used, but I’m sure it was a revolver back then, more than enough rounds to fulfill its purpose.

          We actually went on to do the song afterward, but informed security in advance of the plan. It was a huge fan favorite.

          Reply
    1. SHG Post author

      When Jim Tyre can’t be found, you need to spoil the joke? Do you really want to grow up to live a life of never being invited to fun parties?

      Reply
      1. Jim Tyre

        Oh, c’mon, dude, I haven’t spoiled a joke in ages. But since you invoked my name,

        Extinction Rebellion’s International Rebellion will break out across every continent on Earth, barring Antarctica, including the U.S.

        When did the U.S. become a continent? Why wasn’t I told?

        Reply
  5. st

    Since the accepted narrative for global warming is based on reasoning that borders on magical thinking, it is hardly surprising that the proposed solutions also rest on magical thinking.

    Reply
  6. Scott Jacobs

    While it’s unclear what “fit for purpose” means

    COme now, they clearly mean a democracy that does only and exactly what they want, and never ever anything they don’t.

    So, you know, not a democracy, or at least no liberal democracy with a diverse polity.

    Reply
  7. Anonymous Coward

    It’s all about attention seeking behavior these days. When I was young revolutionary cabals had safehouses and planned in secret. These days you need a Facebook page and a Twitter feed so “progressive” pols can give online tummy rubs.
    This Extinction Rebellion thing sounds more like viral marketing than rebellion.

    Reply
  8. Pedantic Grammar Police

    When my son was growing up, he dragged me to the mall to a place called “Zumies” where he wanted to buy spiked armbands and T-Shirts with rebellious sayings. I tried to explain the problem with corporate-sponsored rebellion but it was several years before he started to get it. His friends were rebelling, and he needed to rebel also or else be left out.

    Over the years, the corporate rebellion industry has only grown in size and effectiveness. They can make young people do anything. Now they are rebelling to demand higher taxes. The interesting question is, who will end up paying the higher taxes. Will it be the rebels, or the rich guys who run the corporations that they think they are rebelling against?

    Stan: “So how do I become a nonconformist?”
    Goth Kid: “You have to dress like us, and listen to the same type of music we do.”

    Reply
      1. Pedantic Grammar Police

        FWIW I did buy the rebel gear, I just made some stupid noises about corporations while I was getting out my wallet.

        Reply
  9. Ross

    The question on time commitment reminds me of when I was working in Africa in 1990, and a spate of civil unrest broke out after an opposition politician died in mysterious circumstances. The rioters all started heading home at Noon, and a visitor asked one of our local employees what was going on. “Breaking for lunch. The riot will resume at 2, when lunch is over”. Which was the case.

    Opposition is hard work, I somehow doubt that these folks have the stamina to keep up the protest for long, since few of them have an immediate personal stake in the outcome, and seem to be mostly motivated by dislike of Darth Cheeto and his antics. If they were to read about the actions in Montgomery after Rosa Parks was arrested, they might have an idea of how to focus and be effective, but the actual commitment required is probably much higher than they are willing to give.

    Reply
  10. Julia

    The parent organization for this project is Compassionate Revolution Limited, UK based (the “Citizens Assembly” and “democracy fit for purpose” came from their fundraiser page, could it mean something in the UK?). The directors are born in 1972 (Gail Bradbrook), 1976 (George Barda) and 1966 (Roger Hallam), clearly not young Millenials. The project already has a record of disrupting traffic in London and such, and their stated goal is to get as many people arrested as possible (apparently, it’s a recipe for a radical change as it drives attention). They managed to raise quite a bit of money from their global fundraiser, but not location based fundraisers. Some blogs speculate that the movement is astroturf. I will not go down this rabbit hole and it sounds like a conspiracy theory. But then, again, if you want to drive people away from activism, promoting juvenile actions might work.

    Reply

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