Glenn Hurowitz

Glenn Hurowitz, who runs the website DemocraticCourage.com, is the author of the forthcoming book, Fear and Courage in the Democratic Party.

Recent Articles

Dingell Versus the Democrats

In congressional fights over energy, Michigan's John Dingell won some early symbolic victories on behalf of polluters. But Democrats are starting to abandon the increasingly unpopular "Dean of Congress."

Rep. John Dingell, D-Mich., smiles in his office on Capitol Hill. He recently faced down his fellow House Democrats' attempt to require a boost in fuel efficiency standards. (AP Photo/Dennis Cook)
"Hey, sweetheart," drawled Republican Leader John Boehner to Steny Hoyer, his Democratic counterpart, as Hoyer emerged from the weekly Democratic Caucus lunch with a bigger-than-usual grin on his face. Boehner had good reason for his sarcasm, and Hoyer had good reason for his glee: after a summer of Republican victories on issues like Iraq and trade policy, House Democrats are finally sticking it to the GOP. The Dems are racing through the "Six for '06" platform they ran on in the last election. Last week, President Bush helped them knock off one more agenda item by signing a law implementing many of the recommendations of the 9/11 Commission, a core Democratic election promise. And last Tuesday, the House fulfilled another Democratic pledge by overwhelmingly approving a tough new lobbying and campaign finance law that will limit lobbyist gifts and force "bundlers" -- individual fundraisers who compile large checks from friends and associates then slip them to campaigns to avoid...

Environmentalism for Billionaires

How businesses are looking to cash in on global warming with green-washed plans that aren't as eco-friendly as they seem.

Lately, I've been inundated with phone calls from venture capitalists, private equity guys, and hedge fundistas. They're coming to me because I'm their environmentalist friend and they all want to know one thing: how they can make a buck off the surge in interest in combating global warming. In a way, that's a sign that the environmental movement has finally arrived. After decades of struggling to convince the titans of finance that protecting the planet and making money weren't mutually exclusive, the tycoons are now coming to us. But many of these capitalist converts need watching. While Wall Street's eco-splurge has generated a flood of financing for legitimately clean ventures like wind and solar power, it's also spawned extremely dangerous projects that are painted green by their unscrupulous backers, but that at their core are as black as, well, coal. The green sheen plastered on some of these projects -- like burning down the rainforest to generate electricity for homes -- has...

Flirting With Liquid Coal

Democratic voters want a clean break with the Bush administration's focus on subsidizing dirty energy. The party's two front-runners might want to listen.

Last week, Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton showed that despite efforts to build support with progressives suspicious of their close ties to corporate America, when it comes to real decisions and real votes, big business will often come first. This was reaffirmed when the two senators voted for an amendment to the energy bill offered by Montana Democrat Jon Tester that would have provided $200 million in grants and $10 billion in taxpayer loans for projects to turn regular old solid, black coal into new, shiny liquid coal to power cars and trucks. The coal companies love the idea, because replacing even 10 percent of gasoline with liquid coal would spur a 43 percent increase in coal mining, according to environmental groups. And proponents have tried to put coal liquefaction in the politically appealing framework of "energy independence" -- helping reduce our dependence on foreign oil. Alas, there are a few problems. At the top of the list is the fact that turning solid coal into...