I agree that the administration’s Russian connection ought to be pursued, but I am not happy that that is being treated as the primary reason to delegitimize Donald Trump. The man is a destructive incompetent with a fist full of bad policies, and the most effective way to bring him down is to expose the fact that his campaign staff talked to the Russian ambassador? What? Have you looked at what he is doing to the country right now? Because there is a whole lot of crap going down while we’re busy looking for Russians under the bed.
For instance, look at his proposed budget for the EPA.
- Puget Sound. Funding for restoration work in the country’s second-largest estuary would be cut from $28 million to $2 million.
- The Great Lakes. Funding to combat algae blooms, invasive species and other water pollution problems in the world’s largest group of freshwater lakes would be cut from $300 million to $10 million.
- The Chesapeake Bay. Funding for restoration in the country’s largest estuary would be cut from $73 million to $5 million.
- Research on endocrine disruptors. The EPA’s work studying chemicals that can interfere with the body’s reproductive and developmental systems would nearly be eliminated, dropping from $7.5 million to $445,000.
- Diesel emissions. Since 2008, the EPA has issued grants to accelerate the country’s transition from old, dirty diesel engines to cleaner burning trucks and equipment. They’ve been responsible for most of Oregon’s progress in addressing cancer-causing diesel soot, a major air pollution source.
- Beach water quality testing. The EPA spends about $9.5 million to fund state testing of bacteria levels at beaches around the country. In Oregon, it funds state testing during the summer. That would be eliminated.
- The U.S.-Mexico border. Sewage and garbage from Mexico frequently sweeps into San Diego during winter rainstorms. The EPA has funded work there to slow the flood of garbage into the Pacific Ocean. Its program to address problems like that would be cut from $3 million to $275,000.
- Environmental education. The EPA spends $8.7 million annually on programs to educate children. Spending on them would be cut to $555,000.
These are standard Republican policies. Are we planning to rely on finding Russian connections in order to get rid of bad stewards of our country’s resources forevermore? Because you know that most of the Republican congress is going to be untainted by Russians, but is still going to be promoting these same bad ideas.
There is no single reason to rise up and throw these assholes out — they’ve provided an embarrassment of causes that make them terrible leaders, which is part of the problem, that the reasons for taking action have been diffused so widely. It seems to me that our targeting is off when conversations with Russian diplomats become the strongest reason for investigating the president, rather than his habit of appointing incompetents and looters like DeVos and Pruitt to run major government agencies.