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Bernie Sanders: GOP Candidates Care More About Koch Money Than 'Preserving the Planet for Our Children'
Science-denying Republicans—intent on derailing local, national and global attempts to avert a looming climate crisis—have their priorities all wrong, presidential candidate Bernie Sanders said on Tuesday.
"I find it unacceptable that many of my Republican colleagues are more worried about campaign contributions they're getting from the Koch brothers and others in the fossil fuel industry than they are about preserving the planet for our children and grandchildren," Sen. Sanders (I-Vt.) said in a statement urging the U.S. to take the lead in stopping global warming.
The U.S. senator made his remarks just hours after President Barack Obama, upon leaving the COP21 climate summit taking place in Paris, called for certain aspects of a climate change agreement to be legally binding—a demand that is sure to raise the ire of Republicans in Congress and beyond.
As the Guardian noted in its reporting on the president's press conference, "a majority of Republicans in Congress deny the existence of climate change or oppose action on it. In the run-up to Paris and while Obama has been at the summit, Republicans in Congress have repeatedly threatened to block climate aid to developing countries."
Meanwhile, the newspaper reported separately on Tuesday, "Republican presidential candidates have poured scorn on Barack Obama for his comments at the Paris climate talks."
Presidential candidate and U.S. Senator Ted Cruz (R-Texas), for example, told a gathering in Iowa that Obama "apparently thinks having an SUV in your driveway is more dangerous than a bunch of terrorists trying to blow up the world." And Mike Huckabee, former governor of Arkansas, tweeted along similar lines, calling Obama "clueless" and mocking him as "meteorologist-in-chief."
Indeed, even Obama's call on Tuesday for the agreement to have some legally enforceable elements is a step back from what the European Union and developing countries have pushed for: a legally binding agreement, such as the Kyoto protocol. But such a treaty would be a non-starter in the Republican-controlled U.S. Congress.
Obama decried Republican climate denial in his press conference, noting that "there's a reason why you have the largest gathering of world leaders probably in human history here in Paris. Everybody else is taking climate change really seriously. They think it's a really big problem."
"It spans political parties," he continued. "I mean, you travel around Europe and you talk to leaders of governments and the opposition and they are arguing about a whole bunch of things. One thing they're not arguing about is whether the science of climate change is real and whether or not we're going to have to do something about it."
Recent studies have shown how corporations, led by ExxonMobil and the Koch family foundations, drive such anti-science ideology through the creation of climate disinformation think tanks and dissemination of coordinated contrarian messaging in mainstream media and public discourse.
Still, with a new poll showing that 63 percent of Americans support the U.S. signing onto a binding international agreement to curb greenhouse gas emissions, one can only hope the tide is shifting.
"The evidence is overwhelming," Sanders declared. "Droughts, floods and severe storms already are impacting the planet and the situation will only become worse in years to come."
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Cabin fever is often associated with being cooped up on a rainy weekend or stuck inside during a winter blizzard.
In reality, though, it can actually occur anytime you feel isolated or disconnected from the outside world.
What is cabin fever?<p>In popular expressions, cabin fever is used to explain feeling bored or listless because you've been stuck inside for a few hours or days. But that's not the reality of the symptoms.</p><p>Instead, cabin fever is a series of negative emotions and distressing sensations people may face if they're isolated or feeling cut off from the world.</p><p>These feelings of isolation and loneliness are more likely in times of <a href="https://www.healthline.com/health-news/yes-covid-19-cases-are-rising-why-you-still-need-to-practice-social-distancing" target="_blank">social distancing</a>, self-quarantining during a <a href="https://www.healthline.com/health/what-is-a-pandemic" target="_blank">pandemic</a>, or sheltering in place because of severe weather.</p><p>Indeed, cabin fever can lead to a series of symptoms that can be difficult to manage without proper coping techniques.</p><p>Cabin fever isn't a recognized psychological disorder, but that doesn't mean the feelings aren't real. The distress is very real. It can make fulfilling the requirements of everyday life difficult.</p>
What are the symptoms?<p>Symptoms of cabin fever go far beyond feeling bored or "stuck" at home. They're rooted in an intense feeling of isolation and may include:</p><ul><li>restlessness</li><li>decreased motivation</li><li><a href="https://www.healthline.com/health/irritability" target="_blank">irritability</a></li><li>hopelessness</li><li><a href="https://www.healthline.com/health/unable-to-concentrate" target="_blank">difficulty concentrating</a></li><li><a href="https://www.healthline.com/health/irregular-sleep-wake-syndrome" target="_blank">irregular sleep patterns</a>, including sleepiness or sleeplessness</li><li>difficulty waking up</li><li><a href="https://www.healthline.com/health/lethargy" target="_blank">lethargy</a></li><li>distrust of people around you</li><li>lack of patience</li><li>persistent <a href="https://www.healthline.com/health/depression/depression-vs-sadness" target="_blank">sadness or depression<br></a></li></ul>
What can help you cope with cabin fever?<p>Because cabin fever isn't a recognized psychological condition, there's no standard "treatment." However, mental health professionals do recognize that the symptoms are very real.</p><p>The coping mechanism that works best for you will have a lot to do with your personal situation and the reason you're secluded in the first place.</p><p>Finding meaningful ways to engage your brain and occupy your time can help alleviate the distress and irritability that cabin fever brings.</p><p>The following ideas are a good place to start.</p>
When to get help<p>Cabin fever is often a fleeting feeling. You may feel irritable or frustrated for a few hours, but having a virtual chat with a friend or finding a task to distract your mind may help erase the frustrations you felt earlier.</p><p>Sometimes, however, the feelings may grow stronger, and no coping mechanisms may be able to successfully help you eliminate your feelings of isolation, sadness, or depression.</p><p>What's more, if your time indoors is prolonged by outside forces, like weather or extended shelter-in-place orders from your local government, feelings of <a href="https://www.healthline.com/health/anxiety" target="_blank">anxiety</a> and fear are valid.</p><p>In fact, anxiety may be at the root of some cabin fever symptoms. This may make symptoms worse.</p><p>If you feel that your symptoms are getting worse, consider reaching out to a mental health professional who can help you understand what you're experiencing. Together, you can identify ways to overcome the feelings and anxiety.</p><p>Of course, if you're in isolation or practicing social distancing, you'll need to look for alternative means for seeing a mental health expert.</p><p>Telehealth options may be available to connect you with your therapist if you already have one. If you don't, reach out to your doctor for recommendations about mental health specialists who can connect with you online.</p><p>If you don't want to talk to a therapist, <a href="https://www.healthline.com/health/depression/top-iphone-android-apps" target="_blank">smartphone apps for depression</a> may provide a complementary option for addressing your cabin fever symptoms.</p>
The bottom line<p>Isolation isn't a natural state for many people. We are, for the most part, social animals. We enjoy each other's company. That's what can make staying at home for extended periods of time difficult.</p><p>However, whether you're sheltering at home to avoid dangerous weather conditions or heeding the guidelines to help minimize the spread of a disease, staying at home is often an important thing we must do for ourselves and our communities.</p><p>If and when it's necessary, finding ways to engage your brain and occupy your time may help bat back cabin fever and the feelings of isolation and restlessness that often accompany it.</p>
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