Jess Phoenix 🌋 Profile picture
Volcanologist, #MsAdventure author, founder @BlueprintEarth, Fellow @explorersclub & @RGS_IBG, science evangelist. Ran for Congress. She/they, NB. 🏳️‍🌈
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Aug 12, 2018 8 tweets 2 min read
Major takeaway from running for Congress: Unless we reform campaign finance laws to eliminate dark money, the people we get to vote for will continue to largely be the last people we want to hold office.

The system is a runaway train, & it's plowing over honest, good people. If you want to see what's driving the passage of legislation, follow the money trail. Lobbyists can serve a purpose in educating lawmakers about niche issues, but the way money is thrown around has corrupted that function of the role.
Aug 2, 2018 7 tweets 2 min read
Former Catholic here, & I'm watching commenters say Francis isn't the real pope rather than shift their position on the death penalty to be in line with the religion they follow. Hard to claim you're Catholic when you actively say you know better than the pope. FWIW, I've been opposed to the death penalty since I learned 156 people on death row have been exonerated so far, which means for every 10 executed one has been set free. I can't reconcile executing people when the gravest errors are made. Life in prison w/o parole is preferable.
Jul 17, 2018 4 tweets 1 min read
We've spent over a year protesting Trump's words & actions, but his comments about Russia starkly reveal not only his ignorance of geopolitics & history, but also his lack of allegiance to the United States, our allies, & our intelligence community. He is a goddamn disgrace. 1/ Russia is a foreign power, & one that has taken direct action to harm our nation. They are not just a business associate. Their leader is as corrupt as they come, & he profits off of the suffering of his own people & the undermining of the democratic principles we strive for. 2/
Jul 3, 2018 4 tweets 2 min read
Here's the new project I'm working on to help right the wrongs we're seeing in our country. We have a new way to give the environment a voice! Introducing #ProtectOurParks I founded this PAC to keep our parks OURS. #poppac… The website is in progress, but it'll be up in basic form later tonight. Of our National Parks are your thing, this is the fight you want to be in. We'll be working to highlight Congressfolk who work against the Parks. What's done in the dark will be brought to the light.
Jul 1, 2018 9 tweets 2 min read
#TheProblemWithPolitics is that the kind of people willing to run for office aren't the kind of people we need in office.* I saw this up close & personal, & it's even more ugly than you think. We need elected officials who mentor the next generation.

*With rare exceptions. At the federal level, we keep sending professional fundraisers to office who are in it for ego or other selfish reasons. At the state & local level, people are consumed by grabbing & retaining power or territory. The larger purpose of serving is far too often lost.
Jun 2, 2018 5 tweets 1 min read
We're well within our rights to critique our President (& elected officials) when their actions warrant it. A very patriotic American once wrote, "The President is merely the most important among a large number of public servants. 1/ ...He should be supported or opposed exactly to the degree which is warranted by his good conduct or bad conduct, his efficiency or inefficiency in rendering loyal, able, and disinterested service to the Nation as a whole. 2/
May 18, 2018 9 tweets 3 min read
I'm so tired. So heartbroken. More kids. Another school shooter. This is our normal now. We don't have to accept it, though. When I was 17 & reeling after the Columbine shooting, no adults told us that it would be ok, that someone would stop the madness. 1/ We stumbled around, feeling blindly for the edges of our grief. Personally, I thought it was a one-time thing. I thought it was an isolated horror. I thought Littleton must have been a special town, & that we were special in our sadness, terror, & anger. 2/
May 15, 2018 7 tweets 4 min read
Let's talk internet. You may have seen #NetNeutrality come up again as a hot topic. But why, you might ask, when sellout @FCC chair @AjitPaiFCC stomped all over it in spite of literally millions of people writing in to support net neutrality? Well, the fight's not quite over. 1/ All 49 Senate Dems plus GOP Senator Collins are forcing a vote to repeal @AjitPaiFCC's cow pie of a policy. 💩 The House is GOP-land, plus you-know-who's in the Oval Office, so the outcome's uncertain. Let me explain some serious hypocrisy re: NN. 2/…
May 4, 2018 11 tweets 5 min read
Volcano talk! Kilauea is the world's most active volcano. It's been erupting since the early 1980s. Hawai'i volcanoes are shield volcanoes, meaning they don't look or erupt like their stratovolcano (cone-shaped) cousins. Here's a pic of Kilauea's summit eruption last April. 1/ The island of Hawai'i is made of 5 shield volcanoes. 4 can still erupt, but Kilauea is the only one doing that now. Shield volcanoes make fluid lavas, & hazards mainly come from vog (volcanic smog), gases (sulfur dioxide & others), and lava flows. Vid of lava entering ocean. 2/
Apr 11, 2018 12 tweets 5 min read
THREAD: It's time to spotlight who I'm running against. The primary is 55 days away, & @SteveKnight25 needs a turn under the microscope. Let's look at the Rep who called California's climate change preparations foolish. 1/… Knight's legislative accomplishments are scarce, & that shows in that his reputation in DC is for being good at golf. He's the 2nd best golfer in Congress, & 11th out of all DC political folks. Still, we need to talk about his voting record. 2/…
Apr 8, 2018 10 tweets 2 min read
Real talk: Federal elections today aren't about who is most qualified for the job. They're not about the right experience, connection w/the community, or commitment. They're about fundraising. We're sending professional fundraisers to DC, & wondering why things don't work. 1/ The influence of dark money is undeniable. Corporations & special interests run the show, & many politicians are subject to their demands (since that's who got them elected). E.g., if the fossil fuel lobby wasn't so powerful, we'd still be in the Paris Agreement. 2/
Feb 8, 2018 8 tweets 2 min read
continues to ignore the collected expertise of scientists around the globe in favor of sowing doubt & mistrust. No, Pruitt, a warmer Earth in 2100 is NOT going to be a good thing. We DO NOT need a debate b/c facts are facts. 1/… #climatechange is the greatest national security threat to our country in the next 50 years. It's a threat multiplier. Terrorism, food security, housing, employment, & immigration issues all stand to worsen due to the effects of climate change. 2/
Jan 24, 2018 13 tweets 3 min read
We must act to stop our gun violence epidemic. Here's what I would work for in Congress:

1. Close background check loopholes immediately.

2. Reinstate funding for CDC to study causes & solutions

3. Form Congressional Select Committee to investigate

Need these steps ASAP. 1/ Gun violence is personal to me. I was 17 & in high school near Columbine in 1999. My boyfriend went there. It ripped our community apart & showed me that innocence isn't something our kids can have anymore. Gun violence is an epidemic. 2/
Jan 9, 2018 9 tweets 2 min read
THREAD: Ok, I'm fed up with how pervasive the modern GOP's anti-healthcare rhetoric is. So many people have bought into the lie that it's ok to only look out for themselves. That somehow "making America great" means ignoring our neighbors in need. 1/ That we can continue to achieve economic prosperity while people drown in outrageous medical bills. That the life of someone who can't afford insanely high treatment costs isn't worth saving. These are lies. They are un-American. They are unacceptable. 2/
Jan 5, 2018 19 tweets 4 min read
THREAD: I went & read the actual 1956 Republican platform thanks to this tweet. Holy crap. Pro-unions, pro-equal pay, pro-"progressive programs," pro-expanding Federal minimum wage & Social Security, free vaccines, more facilities to train scientists, pro-affordable housing, 1/ & then this gem really stood out: "We promise unwavering vigilance against corruption and waste, and shall continue so to manage the public business as to warrant our people's full confidence in the integrity of their Government." Wow. 2/
Dec 28, 2017 11 tweets 2 min read
One question I hear a lot is "why should we send a scientist to Congress since you don't know anything about making laws?" Our soundbite century shows its flaws here for 2 reasons. 1) scientists would kick ass at making laws, and 2) I'm much more than "just a scientist." 1/ All scientists are by definition trained in the scientific method. It's the process of using data gained through observations to remove uncertainties around a hypothesis in an effort to ascertain the truth. In other words, we use facts to understand our world. 2/
Dec 16, 2017 5 tweets 3 min read
The Trump admin has crossed a huge line. They are forbidding the @CDCgov from using the words "science-based" & "evidence-based."

Guess what? Science IS evidence-based, and the CDC shouldn't be making recommendations based on "wishes." #outrage #science… Also ridiculous: banning "transgender," "fetus," "diversity," etc. Anyone will tell you that banning something doesn't negate its existence.

In fact, I am now committed to using all of these words more.
Dec 4, 2017 14 tweets 3 min read
THREAD: T. Roosevelt, a Republican, established 5 National Parks & 18 National Monuments. He is a giant in the conservation world, & he understood that humans have to live in balance with our planet & its environments. 1/ Trump slashed lands designated as National Monuments today. I have dedicated my career to understanding our world & being a good steward of its wonders, & like Roosevelt, I know that .@realDonaldTrump & the GOP's gluttony will hurt our country's wild places. 2/
Nov 16, 2017 7 tweets 2 min read
THREAD: Something many have overlooked is that the GOP just voted to financially devastate grad students by taxing their tuition waivers. This is ridiculous. Let's say a grad student gets a stipend of $30k and a tuition waiver...this is common. 1/ Since the tuition waiver isn't income for the student, it's not currently taxed as income. The #GOPTaxScam just changed that. Now, a grad student will be taxed on their stipend and tuition waiver...meaning your taxable amount just went from $30k to $80k or more. 2/
Oct 26, 2017 12 tweets 2 min read
Science denier/EPA head Pruitt wants big oil-backed fake scientists to debate real scientists about climate change.… 2/ Pruitt is trying to undermine decades of research & scientific consensus about the damage CO2 does to our environment. He's in it for $.