Photo by Tar Sands Blockade.
Hundreds of socialists, environmentalists and climate activists attended the first Ecosocialist Conference in New York City last month. One of the featured speakers at the conference was Jill Stein, the nominee of the Green Party during the 2012 national election in the US, who held a talk about how capitalism is killing the planet.
Besides linking the economic and climate crisis, Stein also discussed the politics of fear, Barack Obama’s environmental failure and the highly controversial Keystone XL pipeline. You can watch her 30 minute long talk in the video below.
“This is an incredible outpouring of support of those not going forward with Obama but forward with the 99% for system change and fundamental justice,” Jill Stein said. “Capitalism is trying to kill the planet, but the people are rising up.”
Her remarks reflected the view of many participants that organizers of the February 17 mass demonstration [against the Keystone XL Pipeline in Washington] had weakened the protest’s impact by presenting it as an expression of support for Obama, echoing his “forward” and “clean energy” slogans, for example. As several speakers noted, the Democratic administration now seems very likely to approve the Keystone XL pipeline.
The February 17 action thus showed both the power of environmental protest and the futility of relying on the Democrats. As Jill Stein said, “the demonstration told Obama, ‘we’ve got your back,’ and then he stabbed us in the back.”