All it will take is a simple, painless test.
Jeez, we’re getting desperate, I think.
I’ve seen moderate Democrats actually say that Rex Tillerson, Trump’s nominee for Secretary of State, seems reasonable, especially compared to the crew of ratfucking incompetents he’s packing into the rest of his administration. It’s not true. He’s as bad as the rest of them, and what we’re seeing is a gradual acclimation to the new politics of corruption and ignorance.
He’s a former ExxonMobil CEO. Do you think he’s going to lead our country’s work to resist climate change? No, he is not.
After more than six hours of testimony, Tillerson backtracked even further, telling senator Jeff Merkley (D-OR) that though the evidence of a changing climate was clear, the cause wasn’t. “The science behind the clear connection (to human activity) is not conclusive,” Tillerson said, an assertion as false as the scientific consensus is clear.
He’s just flatly wrong, in defiance of the scientific evidence. That ought to be enough to scuttle his nomination, but you know it won’t be.
He knows what his mission is. It’s to undermine funding and support for initiatives that might hurt the profits of the coal and oil industries.
Senator John Barrasso (R-WY), who believes government money currently spent fighting climate change could be “better spent” elsewhere, pushed Tillerson to commit to abandoning US funding for anti-climate change initiatives. Specifically, Barrasso opposes support for the Green Climate Fund, an international program set up to help developing nations deal with the effects of climate change. The US under Obama has pledged $3 billion.
“In consultation with the president, my expectation is that we are going to look at these things from the bottom up in terms of funds we’ve committed toward this effort,” Tillerson said.
Even in his non-answer, it’s clear Tillerson was open to dropping such funding. Instead, he opined on the power of electricity to lift people out of poverty. A noble aspiration, perhaps, but one that would provide little consolation to communities ravaged by climate change now and in the future. In today’s hearing, Tillerson may not have out-and-out denied the existence of human-caused climate change or the need for the US to help combat it. But his tepidness on global warming betrayed one clear fact: if confirmed, the US will no longer lead on climate change. It will be at the table, sure, but as a difficult guest, not the host.
This is where we’re at. We are the Soviet Union of 70 years ago, when the science of genetics was rejected for ideological reasons. The comparison to Trofim Lysenko’s career is obvious; just substitute climate science for genetics, Tillerson for Lysenko, and the whole damn Republican party for Stalin.
By 1948, scientific dissent from Lysenko’s theories had been outlawed in the Soviet Union, even though the vast majority of Soviet biologists, with increasing (if surreptitious) access to Western publications, knew that those theories were nonsense. The theory that human-induced climate change is not real is likewise nonsense. It is a theory that is only held by those who do not wish to face facts. Those facts, such as record atmospheric carbon dioxide levels and inexorably increasing global temperatures, speak for themselves. We are already in a situation where the 1.5C temperature increase that was the center of the Paris agreement seems to be an absurdly optimistic goal. It is almost sure to be exceeded, although we don’t know where, and we don’t know when.
This uncertainty has been taken as an opportunity by today’s climate change Lysenkoists. Like the cigarette manufacturers who refused to accept the increasingly obvious link between smoking and lung cancer in the 1960s and 1970s, the new Lysenkoists will grab on to any expression of uncertainty to justify their self-interested beliefs. They include, but are not limited to, the representatives of the fossil fuel industry and their political allies. Their pernicious influence is not just confined to the U.S. In my own country of Australia, for example, the Government has been lobbying strongly for more Chinese purchases of coal, and is also about to advance a loan of $Aus 1 billion for the establishment of a giant new coal mine near the already-threatened Great Barrier Reef.
Every person on Trump’s team is a shill for a fraud. Don’t be fooled. Every one of them is purest poison, not just to America’s future, but to the whole of humanity.
I’m almost afraid to go to sleep at night any more. The rats are busy, busy, busy, plotting destruction.
Last night, while most of us were unconscious, the Republican senate pulled some procedural games to allow them to act unilaterally. They really are determined to destroy people’s health insurance.
Thursday’s Senate procedural vote will set up special budget rules that will allow the repeal vote to take place with a simple majority in the 100-member Senate, instead of the 60 votes required to move most legislation.
That means Republicans, who control 52 seats, can push through repeal legislation without Democratic cooperation. They’re also discussing whether there are some elements of a replacement bill that could get through at the same time with a simple majority. But for many elements of a new health care law, Republicans are likely to need 60 votes and Democratic support, and at this point the two parties aren’t even talking.
They also discussed what they don’t like about the Affordable Care Act. Among the things they definitely want to kill are preexisting conditions protections, the ability for young adults to stay on their parents’ plan, and, of course, contraception. Those all sound like wonderful things to me, and I can’t understand how anyone can think we ought to dispose of them, so the logic escapes me — the drumbeat of hatred for all things Obama has led to people voting to demolish even those accomplishments that help them.
We are so fucked. And by “we”, I mean all of the American people, including those who voted for these Republican scum.
(Important: Even if you stay awake all night, wide-eyed and staring in terror, the Republicans are still going to do everything they can to ruin your life and the lives of your children. You might as well try to get some sleep.)
Protesters briefly disrupted the hearings for that fascist fuckwit, Jeff Sessions. Remember in the coming years that these were the people who had the guts to make a stand before a swarm of deplorable racists were installed at the top of our government.
What are you doing to fight back?
While it’s true that Obama is going to acquire a glowing halo of sanctity in comparison to the shambling beast that comes after, I would remind you that he was far from perfect. In particular, his foreign policy was rather hawkish and brutal to civilian populations.
In President Obama’s last year in office, the United States dropped 26,171 bombs in seven countries. This estimate is undoubtedly low, considering reliable data is only available for airstrikes in Pakistan, Yemen, Somalia, and Libya, and a single “strike,” according to the Pentagon’s definition, can involve multiple bombs or munitions. In 2016, the United States dropped 3,027 more bombs—and in one more country, Libya—than in 2015.
Right. We’re kinda sorta at peace, but for some reason we dropped 26,000 bombs on brown people in distant countries.
I’d like to ask the next question: how many people are killed, on average, with every bomb dropped? If it’s a very small number, then we can question the efficiency of a strategy that terrorizes populations and causes destruction but doesn’t, you know, kill that many ‘enemies’. If it’s a middling number, say 10, then the United States killed a quarter of a million people last year.
If it’s a large number, then we are guilty of atrocities to rival the worst despotisms.
He’s got nothin’. He graduated from college a few years ago with a bachelor’s degree, started an overblown blog that he called a news source, and parlayed inventing far-right lies and calling Obama “gay” into a career that endeared him to other liars, racists, and various neo-Nazis.
Despite his disregard for facts and reckless approach to publishing, Johnson, who was recently photographed at a dinner attended by white supremacists in Washington, D.C., built a significant following among many who self-identified as being a part of the “alt-right.” Trump drew significant support from those same followers during the election.
Mike Cernovich, another pro-Trump troll who is friends with Johnson, said that Johnson often has a hand in behind-the-scenes politics.The media really likes to hate on [Johnson],Cernovich said.But if they knew how influential he has been–in ways they didn’t know–it would be kind of mind blowing.
This is apparently all you need to become influential in the new administration. You can be a guy whose main claim to fame is that people spread scatological rumors about him and his acquaintances find them plausible, and still play a role in shaping American policy.
Is this a great country or what?
Streep used an award ceremony to slam Trump in a very nice little speech — you can read it online, with all the good points (and there were many) highlighted — and the right-wingers, including our very presidential president-elect, are in a fine high snit over it. However, it left me unenthused, even while agreeing with much of it, for a couple of reasons.
This is the least of my concerns, but I’m not a Streep fan. What can I say, that self-indulgent Mamma Mia left me scarred.
We are about to inaugurate a nightmare president, a creepy horror whose appointments and policies ought to terrify us, and yet again the media welcomes this speech as the kind of superficial celebrity-on-celebrity spat that they love so well. It is a distraction. Look again at that speech: it’s chewing out a bully for being a bully, which is a fine thing, but it says nothing about the politics or the effects of those politics.
What bugged me most, and is probably going to be used by Trump voters to dismiss it, is how vain it was. It was all about how wonderfully diverse actors are, and how many of them are immigrants or from other countries, and it was designed to make all those actors feel damn good about themselves, and also to encourage a little self-pity that Donald Trump is targeting them.
But all I could think as she praised the diverse backgrounds of these well-known actors was that this was not the best group to highlight. Everything she said is also true of college professors and scientists, and we don’t get pampered and spoiled and paid big bucks to churn out a single project. It is also true of, for instance, farm workers, who are black and brown and white and most definitely do not get paid a wage that allows them to live a Hollywood life style. When the camera panned over her audience of famous people dressed in tuxes and designer gowns that probably cost more than most of us make in a year, what I heard was a woman mourning the threat to her privileges. It somehow resonated less than, for instance, the threats to shut down Planned Parenthood, to deny people health insurance, the sabre-rattling threats to foreign nations, the imminent looting of our country’s wealth by billionaires. Hollywood A-listers will get through the next four years just fine…the rest of us, maybe not.
That elitist snipe at football and mixed martial arts was not helpful. It’s one thing to praise the virtues of the patricians, another to disparage the pleasures of the plebs. Someone who starred in Mamma Mia does not get to sniff at low brow popular entertainments and sports.
But I cannot deny that she made legitimate points, and every group, rich or poor, that is going to be damaged by this presidency ought to speak up, including actors. I’m just worried that, once again, the Democrats are going to promote the support of a tiny elite while ignoring the concerns of, say, labor, and are just going to enhance the idea that liberals are out of touch. And, of course, this is all our media have been talking about for the last day.