Posts tagged ‘Scott Pruitt’

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Scott Pruitt, the EPA administrator, who was clearly there to dismantle the agency and make it a lap dog of corporations, oh, and don’t forget denying science, is in hot water over his ethical failures, and the latest, trying to fire or sideline those that have tried to call out his lapses. Now think about this. He was the elected Attorney General from Oklahoma. You know, the guy who enforces the laws. Now you understand the teacher strike there. The teachers do not want to be part of a government system that produces mindless morons like Pruitt or the people who put him in power. They want their kids to be able to think. Now Oklahoma is Redder than Red so any parallels you want to draw about voting for Trump, failed conservatism, and dumber than a brick are more than appropriate.

Here in River City (Sacramento) the Stephon Clark protests go on. As I wrote before, this is a tragedy, the cops executed this guy, and nothing is going to happen because the laws favor the police. And I can kind of understand the black communities anger, as much as any white dude can. But what they are doing is counterproductive. Sure Martin Luther King Marched, but he was fighting for equality and voter rights. He was trying to be lawful in a morally and ethical way and yet let police demonstrate their brutality and hatred.

The Sacramento demonstrators, sadly made up of mostly just the black community, are disrupting the community demanding the police officers be charged which, of course, they are not going to be. Totally wrong focus that highlights them against us mentality that then alienates the community. The proof, very, very sadly, is in a story that noted that a nurse fired for her racist comments saying Stephon Clark got what he deserved, had raise $25,000 on GoFundMe. African-Americans have real grievances and they are a special case, there is systematic racism, but to win this battle, they have got to quit making it about them as a special case. Strange how that works.

Michelle Goldberg wrote a really interesting piece this morning about QAnon, which I had never heard of, but where apparently the Trump faithful including Roseanne Barr get their fantasies about Trump. Apparently it is a site created to push the fantasy that all the chaos and incompetence you see is really all part of a brilliant secret plan to make things better with all the secret programs going on:

You don’t create a wild fantasy about your leader being a covert genius unless you understand that to most people, he looks like something quite different. You don’t need an occult story about how your side is secretly winning if it’s actually winning. Publicly, many right-wing politicians and pundits disdain the Mueller investigation and pretend to believe that Trump’s ties to Russia are negligible. But among part of the Trump base, the effort to explain them away appears to be creating psychic strain.

“You cannot possibly imagine the size of this,” said a Q dispatch last month. “Trust the plan. Trust there are more good than bad.” Q almost certainly doesn’t know any state secrets, but he, she, or they understand that some fervent Trump supporters require more reassurance than they’re willing to admit. Their desperate conviction that they will be proven right about Trump betrays a secret fear that they will be proven wrong.

It is amazing what people will do to not think and try to support what they want to believe. Had they been in charge, we would still think the sun revolved around the earth and voodoo medicine works.

Now and finally in the category of lying sack of shit, here is a summary of fact checks from President DFF’s statements yesterday. You will note that most of this is either a racist rant (be afraid, they will rape your women) to absolute lies about a myriad of issues:

“You remember my opening remarks at Trump Tower when I opened, everyone said oh he is so tough and I used the word rape. And yesterday, it came out where, this journey coming up, women are raped at levels that nobody has ever seen before.”

Now this is such an unmitigated lie and attempt at racial fear mongering.  Implicit here is Mexicans coming across the border will rape your white women.  Of course that is a lie, but similar to what Southern politicians did back in the 60s in regard to black men.  Then he tried to make it about the Caravan, except there is no known rapes among or by the Caravan people, and let’s just clear the air here.  Those people in the Caravan are coming to the border to turn themselves in and ask for political asylum.  They faced rape, murder, and the children being abducted in their home country due to drug gangs whose livelihood we support by our need for drugs, so they did what any loving parent would do.  He turns them into rapists and murders.  What a pig.

He then repeated the lie about chain immigration:

 “If you have a baby on our land congratulations, that baby is a United States citizen. We are the only ones…So this guy because he is here can get the Mother and the Father and the Grandmother and the cousins and the brother.”

This is another blatant lie.  In theory it would work, but each link in the chain takes years, sometimes decades to approve and get in the country.  The waiting list for a typical family is over 12 years.  It does not happen, another strawman. Here are some more from the NYT:

“They used to call it tax reform. And for 40 years, they couldn’t pass anything and they didn’t know why.”

False. Tax cuts were passed under Presidents Ronald Reagan, Bill Clinton, George W. Bush and Barack Obama. Read more here.

“We had a trade deficit of almost $500 billion last year with China.”

This is exaggerated. The American trade deficit with China was closer to $400 billion in 2017. Read more here.

“In many places, like California, the same person votes many times. You probably heard about that. They always like to say, ‘Oh, that’s a conspiracy theory.’ Not a conspiracy theory, folks. Millions and millions of people, and it’s very hard because the state guards their records.”

This is false. There have been no credible allegations of fraudulent voting at anything close to this scale during the 2016 election. Read more here.

“We have very weak laws because of the Democrats,” the president said, adding, “We had very, very weak laws. We have the worst laws — you ever think catch-and-release, which we’re terminating very quickly.

False. Mr. Trump is referring to a practice, not a law, where detained immigrants are released until court proceedings because of legal and logistical constraints. It has occurred under Republican and Democratic administrations alike, including under Mr. Trump. Read more here.

Conclusion:  President DFF is a lying sack of shit and the people who believe in him are deluded morons.  How is that for direct?  See Michelle Goldman above for how they delude themselves with a secret agenda even though he looks like a moron, walks like a moron, and talks like a moron.  If you want to be afraid, he is the one you should be afraid of.  Have a great weekend.  Carpe Diem.

Random Monday Morning Thoughts

Why does the base stick with Donald Trump. I wonder if it is the abused wife syndrome. Why does and abused wife stay with her abuser? Because she does not see that there are other options.

The New York Times catalogue 61 outright lies that Trump has told while being in office. The Washington Post found 492 occasions where what the President said was either false or misleading in the first 100 days. We are at 836 now with most common lie claiming Obamacare is collapsing. Yeah right, fake news.

The Village Idiot in Chief's new communication director, Anthony Scaramucci, looks like he is from the mob, which may not bode well when the real shit hits the fan, and as near as I can tell, he just more aggressively lies than Sean Spicer did. Oh, and isn't he from that same elite East Coast mob Trump's base hates?

By the way with Spicy gone will we not miss Melissa McCarthy in what I have to say was the best caricature of Spicy and his defensive lying than we will ever see again? Of course Scaramucci could be right up there as Saturday Night Live fodder, and who can do Sarah Huckabee Sanders in her humorless droll assessment that she does not agree when a reporter points out the obvious?

So today Jared Kushner goes before a closed session of the Senate Intelligence Committee and you have to wonder why it is closed. Of course he released his 11-page rebuttal with "no collusion", which is a one-way conversation where we can't hear the other side and the questions which would cast doubt on his story. That may have been by design from the Republican Chairman. Sadly in America today, if you want the truth you have to pray for leaks. What the Village Idiot in Chief calls fake news is the only way we can stay informed.

Chuck Schumer released an op-ed as a preview of the Democrat's "Better Deal" (which I commented on yesterday). But the real fun is reading the comments that noted that in his op-ed he said nothing about single payer, while others noted that Bernie had already charted a path if they had the guts to follow it.

And finally it was noted that the new head of the EPA, Scott Pruitt, had spent most of his time in his home state of Oklahoma. I don't know whether that is a good thing or a bad thing considering his climate denial and fawning over the carbon energy industry. Of course he is putting industry flakes into positions that used to be held by scientists. I wonder if anybody but me remembers Love Canal or thinks our kids not having cancer is way more important than maximizing profits.

When I get the news of the day, which I am ignoring right now, more will follow. It will be interesting to see how the spinners try to pretend what is happening in a Trump White House is rational and that President Trump can learn new tricks. TTFN

Our Theocracy of Economics and Religion

Here is one thing few people are writing about*, I guess because they think Trump is not really a religious man, many of the policies that will come out of the Trump administration will be based on a very narrow view of religion.  Not only did we get conservative economic ideology (also a religion**), but in many of the social policies, they will be heavily imbued with a religious belief.  I guess because the media is afraid to point out or criticize religion and its influence in our government, this is just ignored.  The idea is that we respect freedom of religion and attacking religious beliefs is really un-American.  But what do we do when they define Government and our policies, and those religious beliefs are a narrow conservative evangelical Christianity?

Think about Betsy DeVos, nominee for Secretary of Education.  She wants to basically end public education and fund religious schools and charters that, “will continue to advance God’s kingdom.” Note that while it barely came up in the hearings, she has given generously to groups “funding Christian schools, evangelical missions, and conservative, free-market think tanks like the Acton Institute and the Mackinac Center that want to shrink the public sector in every sphere, including education.”  She has support groups who want to relax the boundary between religion and government. (Mother Jones). It’s all about getting our kids to be thinking right evangelical thoughts.

Think about the EPA nominee, Scott Pruitt.  He is another conservative Christian who “as a state senator,  proposed one of the most onerous anti-abortion laws in the country, and as attorney general, he helped lead the opposition to the recent Department of Education guidelines on transgender students using gender-appropriate bathrooms.”  As the Daily Beast implied, he comes from the evangelical groups that believe, “Earth and its ecosystems — created by God’s intelligent design and infinite power and sustained by His faithful providence — are robust, resilient, self-regulating, and self-correcting, admirably suited for human flourishing, and displaying His glory. Earth’s climate system is no exception.” In other words, What Me Worry.  Science is rubbish.

Think about the Vice-President, Mike Pence whose policies on abortion and gays is driven by his evangelical Christian views.  Then there is Ben Carson, and like Pence, a creationist, or Rick Perry who has been quoted as saying evolutionists are “out there”.  A more in-depth look at this comes from Israel’s Haaretz.com and I suggest you read it.  Basically we are seeing an evangelical religious government being put in place.  But what of the  inclusion of so many Goldman Sachs alumni former generals and billionaires?

There is no contradiction here.  The folks that come from conservative economic ideas have the same zeal as religious fanatics and approach other points of view with the same closed mind and sense of heresy.  The market place is God, deciding winners and losers. the winners are the anointed people, and government intervention is heresy.  Wealth flowing to the wealthy is a result of this system and is a system of right, wrong, punishment, and reward determined by their God, the market place which fits very nicely with evangelical Christian belief.  If many suffer under this system, it is okay because they deserve it, just as those who don’t believe as the evangelical Christians believe, are doomed to hell.  We are now living in a Theocracy of Economics and Religion.

So when you see the first policies coming out of the Trump administration, things like moving the embassy to Jerusalem, moving quickly on defunding Planned Parenthood, another round of attacks on gay rights, an attack on climate change, even defunding the Endowment to the Arts, it makes perfect religious sense.  Wait till we see what Betsy DeVos does in the Education Department.  It is about taking narrow evangelical Christian beliefs and forcing them on the rest of us (the Endowment to the Arts attack is because the arts challenges us to think about who we are as opposed to accepting scripture).

The Economic theology will come quickly enough as the attacks on Social Security, Medicare, Medicaid, Obamacare, and of course using that money to fund tax cuts. Only the right people are rewarded. We are about to become a total Theology which has combined conservative economic ideology with evangelical religious beliefs.

The Constitution is clear about religion and government, but this flock sees no problem with using their religion to define the world and use government to inflict it on the rest of us.  Rational debate need not apply.  And that is what is happening.  What will save us is that reality will run head long into ideology and finally something will have to give.  But in the interim a lot of us are going to suffer and there could be violence and unrest as these failed ideas are put into policies around the world.  We are entering a new Dark Age.

*I found the best coverage of this from all places, Israel in Haaretz.com which is an Israeli publication.  I thank them for their work.

**I use the term religion to mean a set of beliefs not subject to rational debate, but accepted on faith.  Not all religions are like this, but in this context, that is exactly what is going on.