January 2018

South Carolina’s Governor, Henry McMaster, has joined Florida’s Governor, Rick Scott, in asking Interior Secretary, Ryan Zinke, for an exemption from Zinke’s plan to open all waters to offshore drilling. It’s likely that the relatively unremarked rollback of EPA regulations gave Zinke confidence that his ‘drill everywhere’ initiative would be greeted with approval by Trump’s MAGA zealots and the Republicans in general.

He was wrong.

It’s one thing to sully the backyards of poor people forced to live near mines, factories, and other polluting industries. But offshore drilling threatens the well-being of the beachfront-house and yacht-owning classes. No doubt they made their feelings known to the state powers-that-be.

Zinke has already been granted Florida relief from his drilling edict. His reasoning? Florida is too reliant on tourism to risk oil washing up on the beach. However, any state that has a coastline relies on tourist dollars — except Alaska. Which explains why it is the lone coastal supporter of Zinke’s announcement.

McMaster summed up the feeling of coastal governors and ocean-front Representatives when he said:

“We cannot afford to take a chance with the beauty, the majesty and the economic value and vitality of our wonderful coastline in South Carolina,”

As long as Florida was the sole exception Zinke had some justification as Florida is third only to Nevada, and less obviously Wyoming, in reliance on tourism. And it is the number one coastal state. But if Zinke allows South Carolina to escape his drilling edict he would find it hard to justify keeping any other state obligated.

He may be willing to take his political chances, but I imagine his action will give California and all the other blue coastal states — and they are mostly blue — solid grounds for legal action. And what if Georgia follows suit?

North Carolina also presents Zinke with a problem. Like Florida, it is a state that voted for Trump but has also recently voted for a Democrat. It already has a Democratic Governor. It is being forced to redraw its race-based congregational districts. And Republicans can ill afford to lose the coastal vote.

I believe that Zinke thought the red states would welcome the economic boon — no matter how small or illusory — and who cared about the blue states. But he doesn’t seem to have asked the Republican Governors how they would feel about it. Showing yet again that the Trump administration is generally terrible at everything except looking incompetent, rushed and weak.

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Is Mar-a-Lago a Shithole?

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A nation’s leader has an ass for a son who has no idea that his only success is due to his father’s wealth, connections and influence. Sound familiar? Only this time it is Israel. The leader is Bibi Netanyahu and the son, Yair Netanyahu. Yair is a drinker — much like another loud mouth scion was […]

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Iran Bans Teaching English in Primary Schools.

January 10, 2018

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Reefer Madness: Jeff Sessions Restarts the War on Marijuana.

January 7, 2018

Jeff Sessions announced that he is turning back the clock on America’s pot policy. He rescinded the “Cole Memo” issued by then-Deputy AG Jim Cole in 2013 outlining the Obama Administration’s decision to leave marijuana laws up to the states – with exceptions for drug cartels and minors. We don’t know yet what Sessions decision will mean for state […]

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Anatomy of a Fox News Story or How to Lie Without Actually Lying

January 3, 2018

Fox News published a story (read it here) with this exuberant headline displayed below a modestly sized “THE CLINTONS”: Let’s break it down. It starts with “Hillary Clinton”: Which alerts the Fox news fan to turn up the Hillary slime dial. Next, we have “backer” — so it’s a conspiracy. Then “$500G” — so it’s a big bucks conspiracy. “fund women”, […]

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Trump Wonders Why Anyone Would Vote for Democrats in 2018. Here’s Why.

January 1, 2018

There is a new desperation in Trump’s tweets. Let’s consider one: Donald J. Trump‏ @realDonaldTrump Why would smart voters want to put Democrats in Congress in 2018 Election when their policies will totally kill the great wealth created during the months since the Election. People are much better off now not to mention ISIS, VA, Judges, […]

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