Discussion: Activists Riot Against G-20 Summit For 3rd Night In Hamburg

Angela Merkel chose to hold the G20 summit in Hamburg for a variety of reasons, not all of them wise. Hamburg has a history of political activism. Turns out there were over two dozen rallies and protests during G20 and local law enforcement was overwhelmed. Instead of photos of a triumphantly staged international gathering as she heads into the September elections, she got pics of burning cars and hundreds of injured.

All of the G-20 nations are two-faced concerning their global responsibilities regarding climate change.
They all invest far more of their nation’s dollars in fossil fuel energy than any other.

They could make that switch on the spot, why don’t they?

This is part of why there are riots, we are running out of time for peaceful demonstrations.

The rioters don’t need a cause, just a venue.


The vast majority were peaceful and showed up to show support for what they believe in.
They shouldn’t be judged by the actions of a few.

Personally, considering what is done in our names and without our consent, I have no problem with slightly radical demonstrations.
If we wait until climate change kicks in and we are past the point of no return, these riots will look like baby shit in comparison to what will happen worldwide.


Well, they didn’t scare off the masses, so if that was their intent, they failed right out of the gate.
And since it has become obvious what they are about then it is also easy to separate them from the crowd. Basically, there are two demonstrations on-going at the same time within one group.

As far as it mattering what the vast majority did, I was responding to ottnot saying that the rioters just need a venue. Which may be very true of the rowdy, unruly and destructive but far from true for the larger group.

There will always be the violent ones but they haven’t stopped the peaceful ones that know how to affect change and this very demonstration was proof of that.
Thus, it will always be.

I’m sorry, but what does “they all invest far more of their nation’s dollars in fossil fuel energy than any other” even mean? Are you talking about state money or are you talking about private money or do the two not have any distinction in your mind? Are you talking about the fact that people continue to fuel their cars with gas? Where’s the evidence for whatever it is you’re contending? Are you seriously contending that Germany, just for example, is putting state money into fossil fuel?

And “they could make that switch on the spot?” Really? Because all of them are, what, one party dictatorships ruled by decree? None of them have to take into account the massive economic dislocation and potential for social and economic upheaval that whatever it is you’re advocating, if you know what you’re advocating, would cause?

This kind of magic wand thinking is as pervasive of the left of the left as it is on the the right and it belies the same kind of authoritarian thinking, a rejection of the existence of complexity. And, for that matter, the tendency to summon “facts” into being whose existence is held up as proof of systemic corruption that justifies nihilism and violence. And that’s precisely what’s driving the mush-brained “anti-globalist activism” that dogs these summits. It’s the opposite of helpful, the opposite of effective.


I read more than one article since the beginning of this summit and that is what I base my claim on.

This is one and I see no need to keep searching for others when it is just as easy for you to find them as it is for me. I’m sorry if that doesn’t satisfy you.

When I say make the switch on the spot, I mean that they could balance their investments and divest from fossil fuels and eventually become 100% alternative energy consumers or by far the greater percentage. I’m not saying that they haven’t begun or are against the effort but that they are playing both sides and fossil fuels are still the preference, unless this reporting is completely wrong?

You are way over thinking my meaning.
My point was just that they talk climate on one hand while still investing heavily against that change on the other.

Your veiled accusations are not appreciated. If you read, for whatever reason, more into what I meant, then that is a mistake and you possibly could have simply asked without going off the deep end.
I do not discount your knowledge or reasoning, I’m only saying that you missed my point.

ETA: here’s a few more,


They mostly just repeat the same info but they do agree.

True that. In a similar vein, I do not get the absolutist position on natural gas pipelines. The stuff is safe and clean and fulfills a need where renewables just aren’t ready to bear the load, like the Northeastern U.S. Why not demand better regulation and methane capture from wellhead to furnace (like Southern Company does now)? Natural gas pipelines have criss-crossed my upper middle class town and county for decades with no problems and were dug up and replaced with annoying but minimal hassle a few years ago in an upgrade (Texas Eastern Transmission owns them). This absolutism to no end and absent any solution irritates the hell out of me.


We don’t have a disagreement, but we might have insufficient clarity.

I see a gap between the rioters and the demonstrators/protesters. Even if you are very passionate about climate change or globalization, you don’t express yourself by looting stores or bringing weapons to use offensively against the police. It doesn’t take a lot of brainpower to understand that such actions would turn the public against your causes. The rioters were there to riot.


Back in the day they brought pitchforks and torches.

Point being, that if you wrong people enough they are going to react similarly.

No, I don’t believe that showing up with the intention of wreaking havoc is right but the fact that people get this riled up is testament to how angry they are and how little they feel they can do about it.

When your vote is manipulated and your voice is silenced, your options are slimmed way down.

Natural gas is the perfect example of how ungodly complex transitioning away from fossil fuel is.

On one hand, switching from coal (or, for that matter, petroleum) to natural gas represents a huge net reduction in carbon emissions and the infrastructure is at least potentially usable if we ever manage to switch to hydrogen or if we find some catalyst or process that makes it economically feasible to synthesize methane from atmospheric CO2.

On the other hand, methane is about thirty times more potent a greenhouse gas than CO2 such that every cubic foot that escapes unburned from a well or a pipeline or a household is a much bigger problem, that infrastructure can’t be used for hydrogen without massive retrofitting of seals and gaskets because tiny hydrogen molecules can slip past barriers that methane cannot, and continuing to use it is a continuation of the “burn fossils for energy” economy.

On the other other hand, CO2 is forever, but methane degrades into CO2 or other stuff over the course of a century or so.

So is subsidizing natural gas production and distribution infrastructure a good thing or a bad thing? Because that’s what a huge amount of the “investment in fossil fuels” referenced by the original post is about. It’s certainly what Japan is doing now that it’s faced up to the reality that nuclear power is kind of a problem if your whole nation is an earthquake zone.