scharrison's blog

Mark Meadows is even more of an idiot than you thought

meadowspig.jpg

He doesn't understand how Parliaments work, but he likes them (now):

So he began reading about how coalition governments work in countries with parliamentary systems. He has been studying how other minority parties worked when dealing with a powerful House majority, what strategy they can employ and which moves have an impact. So far, those tactics have been relatively tame.

Angry about the wording of a resolution condemning federal government shutdowns, Meadows’s allies forced a vote asking to adjourn the House on Tuesday — it received just 14 votes. “I’ve been preparing for this for six months, so just stay tuned,” he told reporters just off the House floor Wednesday afternoon.

Bolding mine, because the Freedom Caucus has some 35 members, but meadows only got 14 votes with his little stunt. And now a quick primer on coalition governments: While the larger parties need small groups to push them over the plurality threshold, those groups are only valuable if they can deliver their (own) votes to said coalition on controversial issues. And there is (theoretically) a give and take, in which the coalition will support that small group on a handful of "must have" issues. Even if it was a relevant comparison to the U.S. House (it isn't), Meadows just shot himself in the foot by proving he can't deliver all the Freedom Caucus' votes. Not even half of that sad little number. Back to the idiot, who (once again) can't decide if he should be associated with a government shutdown:

Theocracy, by any other name: Government-funded discrimination in foster care

Weren't they just complaining about the Left indoctrinating children?

The reality of what “religious liberty” means in the eyes of the American Christian right continues to come into sharper focus. As the good people at People for the American Way report, the Trump administration’s Department of Health and Human Services has granted a waiver to the state of South Carolina so that it can dispense taxpayer dollars to a “child welfare agency” that refuses to place foster children in any homes that do not share the group’s Christian evangelical views.

“Under Miracle Hill’s policies, not only Jews are rejected” as potential mentors and foster parents, reported the Religion News Service. “Muslims, Hindus and atheists are also barred from fostering or mentoring children in the nonprofit’s programs; so too are Catholics.” Don’t even ask about same-sex couples, even if they’re Protestant. Miracle Hill has reportedly received millions of dollars from the state and federal governments."

We sure do hear a lot about how Christian groups help people. But what you don't hear about are the strings that are almost always attached. Ritualized prayer, access to mainstream fiction and the Internet denied, and even compulsory bible study when they can get away with it. It happens a *lot* more than you would think, and government generally turns a blind eye because resources to help people are limited. But in this case, those limited resources, which should only be spent on secular programs, are being funneled into a denomination-specific religious operation. They've actually been doing this since the late 1980's, but the Obama administration (rightfully) clarified the language of the Federal funding requirement a few years ago:

Tuesday Twitter roundup

And today's big surprise:

Just kidding. It's no surprise at all the aging white males would pick another aging white male...

New GOP voter suppression tactic: Block voting at schools

votesuppressed.jpg

Making voting harder since 2011:

Lambeth said he is willing to amend the proposed legislation to help attract non-school sites as potential polling places. When asked about whether the legislation could hamper voting in low-income neighborhoods that use schools as precincts, Lambeth said a local school board “should know whether its schools can be made safe or not, with areas secured enough, to allow voting on election days.”

“I focused entirely on the school safety issue, and not the impact on elections. Some schools could have extra on-site security in place on election days” he said.

a) If you were focused entirely on school safety, you would have done something (anything) to limit access to deadly firearms in the wake of all the mass school shootings, and b) There are three (3) separate Amendments to the U.S. Constitution designed to protect the right to vote, so if you completely ignored the potential impact on elections, you are not qualified to be a lawmaker, period. But I think you were well aware of that impact, and are actually counting on it:

Chemours re-importing GenX waste from the Netherlands

chemoursgenx.jpg

Too hazardous for Europe, just fine for North Carolina:

Chemours has “historically recycled” GenX waste at its Fayetteville Works plant that originated from the company’s facility in Dordrecht, Netherlands, a spokeswoman confirmed Friday. The purpose of exporting the material “is to reduce that quantity that is emitted or becomes waste,” Chemours spokeswoman Lisa Randall said.

“The re-importation of material from Dordrecht for responsible recycle is not something new,” Randall said, and has been occurring for about five years with EPA approval.

That five year timeline becomes much more significant when you look at the history of the DuPont/Chemours operation in Dordrecht. In 2012 Dutch regulators cracked down on the company for decades of mishandling C8 (precursor to GenX), including the mass dumping of the chemical compound in area landfills:

Virginia provides a template for NC on coal ash cleanup

coalashseeps.jpg

And it includes making cap-in-place schemes illegal:

The plan would require Dominion to excavate toxic coal ash from unlined and leaky storage ponds along the James, Elizabeth and Potomac rivers and recycle at least 25 percent to “beneficial use” as bricks or concrete, and store the rest in permitted, lined landfills. The plan aims to limit the amount of removal costs passed on to ratepayers, who eventually would pay about $5 more a month, lawmakers said.

Two years ago, lawmakers imposed a moratorium on an approved closure method called “cap-in-place” and directed Dominion to explore alternatives. Cap-in-place has been criticized as inadequate.

Because it *is* inadequate. With no bottom barrier, groundwater seeps in, and then carries contaminants straight down and into rivers and lakes. Each location has individual characteristics that make cap-in-place either somewhat risky or downright crazy, and as SELC has learned in Georgia, utilities simply can't be trusted to judge the difference:

Biden praised Republican in paid speech, Democrat lost race

There really is no good way to spin this:

Mr. Biden stunned Democrats and elated Republicans by praising Mr. Upton while the lawmaker looked on from the audience. Alluding to Mr. Upton’s support for a landmark medical-research law, Mr. Biden called him a champion in the fight against cancer — and “one of the finest guys I’ve ever worked with.”

Mr. Biden’s remarks, coming amid a wide-ranging discourse on American politics, quickly appeared in Republican advertising. The local Democratic Party pleaded with Mr. Biden to repair what it saw as a damaging error, to no avail. On Nov. 6, Mr. Upton defeated his Democratic challenger by four and a half percentage points.

That's right, while Barack Obama was busting his ass (and not getting paid for it) to help make the Blue Wave happen, good ol' Joe was earning $200,000 to help get a Republican re-elected. Of course, his people deny this, and try to play it off as some sort of coincidence, but this was a scant three weeks before the election. Both Biden and his staff had to know this was a monumentally bad idea, which makes these rationalizations even more infuriating:

Pages

Subscribe to RSS - scharrison's blog