Search This Blog

Sunday, December 18, 2016

Whitewashing hatred and bigotry!

The look says it all.
Okay America, since Senators Ted Cruz and Mike Lee made this an issue again by publicly salivating about it like a pair of rabid dogs fighting over a tasty Scooby Snack, let's rap about their disingenuous and downright evil "religious liberty" bill.

The true depth of the rabbit hole.

The long and the short of this type of legislation is that it's a blank check that will let any business owner discriminate against any current or potential employee on the grounds that they, "greatly offend" their religious beliefs. Now I know what you're thinking. Religious freedom is already protected by the First Amendment to the United States Constitution. Why on Earth would we need more? Short answer; we don't. Long answer; here's the thing...

This type of legislation gets tossed around at a state level all the time. The bills are usually grouped together under the catch-all category of RFRA Laws, and they typically carry broad-based, extremely undefined language. With most of these laws, Ted Cruz's baby included, an employer could not only refuse to hire or fire any potential employee that, "offends his religious beliefs," but these laws also open the door to hamstringing the enforcement of domestic violence and child protection laws. Furthermore, businesses could object to minimum wage and tax laws that they claim violates their religious precepts.

These laws got a huge boost after The United States Supreme Court ruled that Hobby Lobby, a corporation, could refuse to supply its employees with federally mandated health insurance coverage that included contraception, because it offended the religious beliefs of the company's owners.

These laws do nothing but give legal ass-cover to blatant discrimination. They have nothing to do with protecting your religious freedom, and everything to do with finding not so clever ways around gay marriage and anti discrimination laws. 

Wednesday, December 14, 2016

Oh No, It's the Universal Heat Death Writ Large. I actually like one of Trump's cabinet picks.

Before anyone starts screaming at me to turn in my liberal card, hear me out on this one. Here's President Elect Trump's pick for Secretary of Interior, current Montana Representative Ryan Zinke.

A little bit about Ryan Zinke.

Yep, Zinke is firmly in the pocket of big business. Yep he's also a climate change denier, yes his social agenda is a disaster, but... He's... actually got a pretty good record for multiple use land management, which is something that any Montanan can preach about to you for hours. (They put it in our childhood vaccination shots.) He's a good pick for Secretary of Interior. I wouldn't put him in charge of EPA (which considering who's taking that over, will be gutted and useless in about three years or so) but federal land use management... yes this guy will most likely do a good job. Plus he's got a geology degree, so he's at least passingly familiar with science (climate change denial non-withstanding of course.)

The ability to manage their own lands is something that should be dealt with on a state level anyway, and Zinke will most likely swing this way. There needs to be a solid balance between the resources we use, and the resources we protect, and Montanans know this well. So good choice Trump you're now 1 and what...8?

The final and perhaps most important bonus to Zinke's appointment to this post is that it will remove his disturbingly evil social agenda from congress. It's too much to hope for that Montana will ever swing liberal on any vote, but with Zinke gone they can start over, perhaps with someone more moderate.

Tuesday, December 13, 2016

President Elect Trump Stuffs A Starving Fox In The Hen House And Slams The Door Shut.

All About Scott Pruitt

So America, this is your President Elect's pick for the new head of the EPA. Some highlights, just so you're aware: 

1. He has a proven track record of defending the largest industrial polluters in The United States. In fact here's a bonus for you, he's currently actively involved in suing the EPA in multiple lawsuits, for doing its job. 

2. Again, to reiterate: He routinely defends big energy companies from EPA regulation, and takes lots of money in campaign contributions from them. He's pro fossil fuels folks, and not in a sane "keep them as clean as possible way" either.

3. He seems to still think scientists are still debating whether or not climate change is real. Here's a tip: They aren't!

4. He thinks the EPA is being deceptive with their methane measurements, but not in the way that they're actually being deceptive in their methane measurements; the EPA is drastically underestimating methane gas emissions.

This is a man who denies scientific fact and cares far more about money than clean air or clean drinking water. I am all for less government regulation, but large corporations are greedy by nature, and they do not care about you. The EPA functions best when it's serving as a watchdog over big energy companies, and the unfortunate fact of the EPA's existence is that you cannot kick this type of agency to a state regulatory level. The issues that they deal with in North Dakota can have drastic consequences for South Dakota or Montana, or Canada, and if you keep denying science and hamstringing the EPA with bullshit lawsuits then you get real massive problems. Ask Libby Montana or Flint Michigan, or Hinkley California if some EPA oversight would have helped.

Take a look at the Ridley Scott movie Blade Runner. That version of Los Angeles is coming people, and this is how it starts.