EPA chief on Irma: The time to talk climate change isn’t now

By Daniella Diaz

Washington (CNN)–Environmental Protection Agency Administrator Scott Pruitt told CNN in an interview about Hurricane Irma on Thursday that the time to talk about climate change isn’t now.

“Here’s the issue,” Pruitt told CNN in a phone interview. “To have any kind of focus on the cause and effect of the storm; versus helping people, or actually facing the effect of the storm, is misplaced.”

He continued: “What we need to focus on is access to clean water, addressing these areas of superfund activities that may cause an attack on water, these issues of access to fuel. … Those are things so important to citizens of Florida right now, and to discuss the cause and effect of these storms, there’s the… place (and time) to do that, it’s not now.”

President Donald Trump has previously called climate change a “hoax” and Pruitt has led a push to roll back EPA regulations regarding greenhouse gas emissions.

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36 COMMENTS

  1. @OP – Environmental Protection Agency Administrator Scott Pruitt
    told CNN in an interview about Hurricane Irma on Thursday
    that the time to talk about climate change isn’t now.

    “Here’s the issue,” Pruitt told CNN in a phone interview.
    “To have any kind of focus on the cause and effect of the storm; versus helping people,
    or actually facing the effect of the storm, is misplaced.”

    So while Pruit is alleging that discussing long term plans to avoid repetitions in perpetuity are “misplaced”, the relief efforts are now relying on belated charity, due to the inadequacy of Pruit’s and Trump’s so called assistance!

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-us-canada-41711576

    The five living former US presidents have gathered for a concert in aid of victims of the hurricanes which ravaged the US this year.

    Barack Obama, George W Bush, Bill Clinton, George HW Bush and Jimmy Carter appeared in Texas on Saturday.

    The three Democrats and two Republicans came together behind The One America Appeal, set up to help those caught up in the devastating trails of Hurricanes Harvey, Irma and Maria.

    It has raised $31m (£23.5m) so far.

    Commendable as this is, it is woefully less than the billions which are needed!

    The politicians launched the appeal in the aftermath of Hurricane Harvey, which caused billions in damage after it made landfall in Texas in August.

    However, it has since been expanded to include the communities in Florida, Puerto Rico and the US Virgin Islands which were hit by the storms which followed.

    So the money which was inadequate for Texas, is now being spread across other regions!

    “As former presidents, we wanted to help our fellow Americans begin to recover,” Mr Obama explained to concertgoers in a pre-recorded message.

    His immediate predecessor added: “People are hurting down here but as one Texan put it, we’ve got more love in Texas than water.”

    All five presidents appeared on stage for the anthem, before taking their seats to watch acts including Lee Greenwood, who opened with Proud to be an American, and Lady Gaga.

    They were not joined by sitting President Donald Trump, who sent a message ahead of the show praising their “wonderful” work and expressing his “deep gratitude”.

    Both Mr Obama and the younger Mr Bush have made speeches in the last week which have been seen as veiled criticism of the former reality TV star’s tenure in the White House.

  2. I heard that a ban on ocean pollutants was recently lifted by Pruitt. I looked it up and found several pro-Trump/ Pruitt/climate change denial articles masquerading as science or legitimate news articles.

    I am starting to think that the internet is a total disaster, was one of the worst things to ever happen to us; humans can’t handle it; we are now flooded with propaganda.

    Perhaps there needs to be stricter guidelines. The internet is a rich source for those seeking confirmation bias and for those seeking to misinform. I see nothing defensible anymore about the internet. I use it myself as do we all; but the price we pay for what we enjoy is way too high, I think. Any comments?

  3. Dan #2
    Oct 22, 2017 at 12:24 pm

    Perhaps there needs to be stricter guidelines. The internet is a rich source for those seeking confirmation bias and for those seeking to misinform. I see nothing defensible anymore about the internet.

    You could use Google Scholar for searches, or select specific reputable news agencies for sources!

    As with newspapers or magazines, – if you just pick up anything, you will get a significant percentage of junk, biased advertising, or wilfully misleading information!

  4. Dan

    Plenty of misinformation and straight up garbage on the internet but also the means to debunk just about everything that comes down the pike. Just lately, my brother said he’d watched the movie What the Health and asked me to watch it and respond. I watched about ten minutes of it, googled it, found they were sponsored by animal rights groups (nothing wrong with animal rights but I need to know who has handed over the cash for the project) and then in light of that, no surprise the film was heavy handed on the meat is poison viewpoint. Also, not ok to fluff on other false health claims.

    Also a friend just sent me an article that denounced organized religion (he knew I’d like that part) but when I googled the author, come to find out he’s part of a business venture called Trans4mind which appears to be a Scientology wannabe with extreme wooist inclinations. My conclusion is that Trans4mind seeks to delete one mind virus program and install their own at considerable profit.

    Both of these quick investigations took about five minutes on the internet and would have taken much longer in a library, even though my library is just over there across the street, haha.

    Not sure why people don’t do a quick scan of these internet articles and info sources. Are they just too trusting? Why are they so trusting and then there’s me who trusts nothing and nobody? I don’t get it.

  5. LaurieB #4
    Oct 22, 2017 at 1:28 pm

    . . . . . but when I googled the author, come to find out he’s part of a business venture called Trans4mind
    which appears to be a Scientology wannabe
    with extreme wooist inclinations.
    My conclusion is that Trans4mind seeks to delete one mind virus program and install their own at considerable profit.

    I was recently commenting on some Scientology ventures in England on this thread!

    https://www.richarddawkins.net/2017/10/trump-panders-to-christian-extremists-at-values-voter-summit/#li-comment-227333

  6. You could use Google Scholar for searches, or select specific reputable news agencies for sources!

    It’s not me I am worried about, or you, Alan, or you, Laurie; it’s the general gullible public, people who are biddable, as Phil says, that I am worried about. It’s the future of our nation I am worried about. The already-angry, the frightened, the right-leaning, and the stupid, are being targeted; not me. Their biasses are being reinforced; they are being fed too much propaganda

    This is fucked up! And that asshole Trump calls the media “fake news.” So truth and propaganda are becoming blurred. I’s all about profit. These are traitors!!! Laurie, you must see Maddow’s interview with Sarah Chayes. Everything this country was founded on is being undermined. Trump and Cruz and Ryan and those that are on their side (and support the tax plan and repealing the ACA and support deregulation, and are for “free enterprise”) are all traitors. Many are white supremacists. Many are sexist. Kelly is scum too, as I recently said on the OD thread. This is bad! Really bad. They’re traitors.

    Look at this: the EPA website is now govt. propaganda. Too much propaganda. Highly problematic.

    An analysis by the Environmental Data and Governance Initiative (EDGI) has revealed that a “substantial” number of resources and references to climate change have been removed from a website maintained by the United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). The site has also been renamed, changing from “Climate and Energy Resources for State, Local, and Tribal Governments” to “Energy Resources for State, Local, and Tribal Governments.”

    “It is beyond comprehension that E.P.A. would ever purposely limit and remove access to information that communities need to save lives and property. Clearly, this was not a technical glitch, it was a planned shutdown.”

    Other government websites have also removed references to climate change since President Trump took office, and the proven human impact on global warming is absent from the “Issues” section of the White House website. The administration’s stance on climate change isn’t the most pressing issue, though; the fact that access to useful resources is being artificially obfuscated is. (from Futurism.com)

    Plus, there are pro Trump propaganda channels on YouTube. Look at this. Pure evil.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=X3QvZLJeeMI

  7. Dan

    I saw the Maddow interview with Sarah Chayes. Very interesting woman. I hope she comes around here on a book tour sometime this winter.

    Did you catch her comment about corruption creating instability in countries? That’s true in Algeria. Fundamentalists there say (to me) that an Islamic state will eliminate corruption in the secular government. A bizarre statement to us but to someone who is completely brainwashed in the purity of the holy book, they assume that this purity will be extended to the government once they take it over. I don’t know which is worse, corruption or a fundamentalist state. Both are toxic to the average person. I asked these people if they think that religious leaders are free from the temptations of corruption and bad behavior. They say yes. Theirs are models of propriety. Of course, everyone else’s are liars and cheats. eye roll. They also insist that prophet Mo is a perfect man on this earth and I disagree with this completely so they’re no judge of propriety or lack of it right from the get go. Even so, Chayes is right about corruption causing instability in a country. I offers a window of hope for the fundamentalists to operate in and make their case to the already indoctrinated masses who are suffering under the secular corrupt regimes. The fundamentalists come off looking like savior angels what with their medical help, food help and financial assistance to widows, jobs for young men and other help for down and out people in society who have been neglected for generations by their kleptocrat politicians.

    I’m still having problems with stupid Comcast but I’m catching up on Maddow online.

  8. I’m all for banning Americans from social media.

    I’m all for Americans getting better media monopoly legislation.

    I’m all for the FCC mandating minimum quality standards on broadcast news.

    I’m all for PBS getting seriously more money and being more like the BBC and less like a craven wuss.

    I’m all for Bill Gates and the decent media moguls re-establishing Al-Jazeera on US broadcast TV.

    I’m all for schools teaching kids about the media and its tenuous relation ship with the truth.

    I’m all for the BBC World service newscasts and docs getting onto NPR.

    But my brain is retreating into forgetfullness (not that it was great) and the internet is like another cortex for me. Because of it lost data gets put back quickly bolstered with added info to better lock it in. It returns to me what others had as hopes and fears and hypotheses. I currently work mostly with young twenty somethings and can ace them on new stuff as well as the old. It has kept me at an inventive peak.

    It brought me Sarah Chayes (thank you Dan and Rachel Maddow). I am now reading her book and have another purchased at the same time. Bad Samaritans: The Myth of Free Trade and the Secret History of Capitalism. Ha-Joon Chang. This latter is delightful confirmation of all I’ve been saying about Globalisation, and the genius of the Pacific Rim countries to do more, more good lifting people out of poverty than any other. It is the polar opposite of the USA where morality is crucified on idealism. In the US, justice and just deserts are pursued to the smallest detail, in the mistaken belief this is morality in action.

    I’m all for social media creating health warnings and fast scores for truth of the news they carry, using, say, academia to establish ratings with accountability. I’m all for a wikinews going in as a counter for every low score news item, with scrupulous links to sources as a minimum.

  9. Did you catch her comment about corruption creating instability in countries?

    Yes, Laurie, in fact I quoted it as best I could from memory (on the Trump Confirmed thread), as my computer would not let me have access to the Maddow video. (It wouldn’t load. Wi-fi here is spotty.)

    Corruption creates instability here too. Here! It will infect us here. Did you catch that part? And will undermine everything that we based the founding of a United States on.

    Everything Trump says is the opposite of what it is he says. Make America Great=Destroy America… Traitors, all of them. I like the word traitor. It’s a good, strong word.

    Fundamentalism or corruption? That reminds me of the question we used to ask each other as kids: Hey, which would you rather have happen: freeze to death or drown?

    Answer: depends on the level of corruption. We are steeped in it already. Fundamentalism, I think, is worse.

    Myth of Free Trade. Trade I know nothing about, need to read about it. We need a good book called the Myth of Free Enterprise. Cruz, that snake-oil salesman, talks about Free Enterprise as he tries to dodge Sanders’ points about the evils of giving huge tax breaks to the top one-tenth of one percent.

  10. Time to talk about climate change was about 40 years ago when we could have stopped any major impacts. Now it’s looking more and more like we are going to have to deal with much worse consequences. And yet there are exciting and really cool things from EV’s to battery storage etc. So close yet so far. Of course down here we have a government still living in denial about AGW.

  11. Reckless Monkey #11
    Oct 23, 2017 at 4:01 am

    Of course down here we have a government still living in denial about AGW.

    Perhaps as they and their voters feel the heat, the climate will convince them!!

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-australia-41493682

    Sydney and Melbourne could face 50C days ‘within decades’

    Australia’s two biggest cities could swelter through 50C (122F) days within a few decades, a study has found.

    Sydney and Melbourne are likely to endure such summers even if global warming is contained to the Paris accord limit of a 2C rise above pre-industrial levels, scientists said.

    Limiting warming to below that would make 50C days less likely, they said.

    Sydney reached a record 45.8C in 2013 while Melbourne hit 46.4C in 2009, the nation’s Bureau of Meteorology said.

    The study examined only forecasts for Victoria and New South Wales, but researchers said the rest of Australia could also expect rises.

    “One of the hottest years on record globally – in 2015 – could be an average year by 2025,” said lead researcher Dr Sophie Lewis from the Australian National University.

    The research, also involving the University of Melbourne and published in the journal Geophysical Research Letters, drew on observational data and climate modelling to predict future temperatures.

    Dr Lewis said the cities could experience 50C days between 2040 and 2050, a forecast based on global temperatures being at 2C above pre-industrial times.

    According to the World Meteorological Organization, the average global temperature in 2016, the warmest year on record, was about 1.1C higher than the pre-industrial period.

    Australia’s most recent summer broke 205 weather records while its winter was the warmest on record, according to the nation’s independent Climate Council.

    Last month, Australians were warned to prepare for a dangerous bushfire season in 2017-18.

  12. Or perhaps the Aussie politicians might be influenced by the collapse of the fishing industry or the loss of protective reefs!

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/science-environment-41653511

    All sea life will be affected because carbon dioxide emissions from modern society are making the oceans more acidic, a major new report will say.

    The eight-year study from more than 250 scientists finds that infant sea creatures will be especially harmed.

    This means the number of baby cod growing to adulthood could fall to a quarter or even a 12th of today’s numbers, the researchers suggest.

    The assessment comes from the BIOACID project, which is led from Germany.

    A brochure summarising the main outcomes will be presented to climate negotiators at their annual meeting, which this year is taking place in Bonn in November.

    The Biological Impacts of Ocean Acidification report authors say some creatures may benefit directly from the chemical changes – but even these could still be adversely affected indirectly by shifts in the whole food web.

    What is more, the research shows that changes through acidification will be made worse by climate change, pollution, coastal development, over-fishing and agricultural fertilisers.

    Ocean acidification is happening because as CO2 from fossil fuels dissolves in seawater, it produces carbonic acid and this lowers the pH of the water.

    Since the beginning of the Industrial Revolution, the average pH of global ocean surface waters have fallen from pH 8.2 to 8.1.
    This represents an increase in acidity of about 26%.

    The study’s lead author is Prof Ulf Riebesell from the GEOMAR Helmholtz Centre for Ocean Research in Kiel.

    He is a world authority on the topic and has typically communicated cautiously about the effects of acidification.

    Warm-water corals are generally more sensitive than cold-water corals. Clams and snails are more sensitive than crustaceans.

    “And we found that early life stages are generally more affected than adult organisms.

    “But even if an organism isn’t directly harmed by acidification it may be affected indirectly through changes in its habitat or changes in the food web.

    “At the end of the day, these changes will affect the many services the ocean provides to us.”

    Since 2009, scientists working under the BIOACID programme have studied how marine creatures are affected by acidification during different life stages; how these reactions reverberate through the marine food web; and whether the challenges can be mitigated by evolutionary adaptation.

    Some research was done in the lab but other studies were conducted in the North Sea, the Baltic, the Arctic, and Papua New Guinea.

    A synthesis of more than 350 publications on the effects of ocean acidification – which will be given to climate delegates at next month’s summit – reveals that almost half of the marine animal species tested reacted negatively to already moderate increases in seawater CO2 concentrations.

    Early life stages were affected in Atlantic cod, blue mussels, starfish, sea urchins and sea butterflies.

    But an experiment with barnacles showed they were not sensitive to acidification. And some plants – like algae which use carbon for photosynthesis – may even benefit.

    EPA chief on Irma: The time to talk climate change isn’t now

    However: – 350 scientific publications and the work of 250+ ocean specialists, won’t fit in a twitter comment or a DimBart article, so Trumpies prefer media trash and biblical quotes, as more in keeping with their mental capabilities and levels of education!

  13. Unfortunately while our PM although a believer, enough of his party are so far against it that doing anything substantial would result in them removing him from the party forthwith which they did when he was last leader. We have had numerous record breaking event in the past 8 years and while it’s hard to attribute any given event to global warming the cumulative stats tell the story. Probably the most telling was they had to add a new colour to weather chart a couple of years ago because the extreme temps were no longer high enough.

    Battery technology is getting better all the time, as are green power systems, clever and optimistic. It’s just so hard to see our country with so much sunshine, and such large windy coastlines not to mention massive areas where wave and tidal power could be easily tapped talking about loaning 1 billion dollars to Adani (a company under investigation in its own country for numerous fraud and environmental issue) to build a coal fired power station, all this while deciding to eliminate an subsidies to alternative energy. If we loan Adani the money we’ll never give it back, even if Adani was an honest broker which seems unlikely they’ll never make enough to pay us back.

  14. Climate change denial. They don’t care even if there is proof that we are the primary cause of climate change; they just don’t care. It’s a lust for supremacy by the white and the rich we are talking about; it’s a mania for short term profit at all costs and for the destruction of government regulations (free market fundamentalism). It’s sheer corruption, class warfare, greed and indifference to anything other than profit. The Trump administration and ALL of the Republicans in Congress (except maybe McCain, who is probably just mentally deranged, but not an actual monster like the others) are fakes, phonies, moral monsters, agents of destruction; they are psychopathic racists, frauds, sick, evil, corrupt traitors, freaks and, above all, thieves. They are so blatantly evil it is hard to get up in the morning.

    I haven’t the words to describe or characterize these people anymore. Moral monsters. I’ll leave it at that.

    “God” help us. (And there is no god; these lunatics should be kept in cages.) We need a revolution.

    I really think it may be too late….Don’t you?

    (Thanks. I needed to get that off my chest, and I spoke the truth mostly. More truth than vitriol.)

  15. The rich without compassion don’t care and will not be affected with their wild surplus of wealth.
    The poor can’t afford to care.
    The middle classes now seem to bleat why is it always left up to us?

    Because it always was and always will be.

  16. There will be no more middle class. Studies have shown that the middle class is shrinking.

    “Commerce cannot be the sole guide of human behavior. This utopian fantasy […] defies 3,000 years of economic history. It is a chimera. This ideology has been used to justify the disempowerment of the working class, destroy our manufacturing capacity, and ruthlessly gut social programs that once protected and educated the working and middle class. It has obliterated the traditional liberal notion that societies should be configured around the common good. All social and cultural values are now sacrificed before the altar of the marketplace.” -Chris Hedges

    This is just one aspect of our sick society. I can’t watch the news anymore. I can’t watch these gleeful, unencumbered shallow entertainers pretending to be journalists and getting rich while we face the rise of a kleptocracy, the creation of a Plutocratic oligarchy, a new gilded age and the total destruction of the planet and the social state.

    No hope left. There is no sound reason why one should be hopeful now. Trump? Give me a break. This has to be the beginning of the end of American civilization. Trump is president? The pussy grabber? the racist liar? He’s a frigging slumlord. That’s all he is.

  17. This ideology has been used to justify the disempowerment of the working class, destroy our manufacturing capacity, and ruthlessly gut social programs that once protected and educated the working and middle class. It has obliterated the traditional liberal notion that societies should be configured around the common good.

    But it was obliterated in 1980 and no-one much seemed to care. Everyone was more or less complicit. Free marketeers and government hating, all.

    Why have Americans never developed an ability to cleanly criticise their own country down at the bar or in church?

    Maybe, they need to fail and fail hard, like the heart attack that saves your life?

    Fortunately, as the sun dips behind a cloud for a twentieth of the population it pops out for a sixth of it rocketed from poverty in decades and already stepping up to task of inventing a sustainable tomorrow for everyone. The moral epicentre of fourth estates resides in beleaguered Qatar, insufficiently appreciated in the states.

    As well as Thieves of State I bought Bad Samaritans by Ha Joon Chang. He illustrates why the US economic model is sub optimum in important places and abusable, creating kleptocracies of huge scale. Properly understanding the value of expertise, taken out of direct fickle democratic interference, steadies down crass exploitation by politicking. Making up market incapacity for cost-effective long-term investment by a big enough state works for a lot of people. Choice between three types of crap is no choice at all.

  18. Phil, Laurie

    Yes, 1980 was a decisive turning point; everything culminated at that time, when Reagan took office. But the “obliteration” you speak of was long in the making, I think. I was born and raised in Manhattan. Manhattan is a kind of mecca, and can be viewed as a microcosm of the country. Everything changed in 1980, for the worse.

    I admire and am interested in your interest in the US, Philonous. (I haven’t a clue really what is going on the UK.) It’s sad. People have admired us in the past and still have a great interest in what is going on here. Now I am ashamed. The US (the “leader of the free world”) has let the world down.

    Why have Americans never developed an ability to cleanly criticise their own country down at the bar or in church?

    Because churchgoers lack critical thinking and the habitués of bars tend to be alcoholics and losers. Not sure this is fair. There are plenty of people who are highly critical. There has been resistance throughout our history. Just not enough right now. I think we’re in a cataleptic state, although Laurie disagrees with that, sees a lot happening.

  19. Dan,

    As a teen the US was where I wanted to live and work. I got the chance in’87 but by then it was going sour. Even so the bulk of my clients were large American companies for the next twenty years and I possibly spent 6 weeks a year in the US. An old chum (a first rate engineer and designer) pops up here once in a while.

    Get your news and documentaries from here for half the time. Give it a couple of weeks.

    http://www.aljazeera.com/live/

    There is another 95% of the world to engage in. Lessons to learn and sorrows greater than yours.

    bars tend to be alcoholics and losers.

    Wow! Not in my local. Its not quite the left bank, but its full of earnest young and old folk, actors, musicians, “in the city”, in advertising, civil servants, winners enough and, worst case, only slightly buzzed at throwing out time. I haven’t listened in on a boring conversation yet.

  20. “..the habitués of bars tend to be alcoholics and losers.”

    Sorry. That was an unfair remark.

    Give what a couple of weeks? What does “half the time” mean?

    Sorrows greater than mine? What can be worse than a great country, founded on liberty, heading towards totalitarianism? We will be no better than the Taliban if we stay on the current path we’re on.

    I wish I wasn’t so dense. Trouble understanding you.

  21. The link to al jazeera news.

    Imbibe less local stuff. Hear about the rest of the world from a great and moral news source. It is therapeutic.

    What can be worse than a great country, founded on liberty, heading towards totalitarianism?

    Four years of petty fascism if that…. and maybe the sleeping giant of a nation will wake up. Anyway now you have to watch like a hawk and see all the problems of presidential (non-parliamentary) systems and how they are more prone to the whims of of psychopaths and bamboozling the public. How opening up to direct democratic choice for this and that government and civic post steals expertise from the general public and gravely reduces their access to the best impartial advice and civic service as they have a right to expect from their tax dollars. Yes it’ll take decades to clear up the damage. But much will usefully lie in ruins. Its your job to know clearly what new has to go in its stead.

    I talk glow-y at times. And I lose track of what’s in whose mind.

  22. Dan,

    Here’s another thing that made me feel better. Remember we were outraged over Trump addressing that crowd of evangelical thugs? After that, I happened to be at a baby shower on the Saturday when a lesbian couple I know started talking with me about the current political scene. I asked them about this meeting with the evangelicals and they didn’t know about it. I gave them a quick rundown. I told them that the goals that Trump is promising to make happen to include getting rid of gay marriage and abortion. They both took this in and then with scoffing expressions, sternly informed me that he would NEVER get rid of gay marriage. The quote was, “They will NEVER get away with that. Never.” Then she said that it’s a terrible idea to force a woman to have a child she doesn’t want and that even though abortion is not an issue that affects the gay community, they still support straight women’s right to choose. They impressed on me that I have no need to worry about the gay community fighting for their rights.

    So I left the shower feeling much assured about things. I DO believe that the gay community will kick ass when the time comes. I wonder if I feel so confident about American women doing so too. I think I do feel some confidence based on the march that we had on the day after the inauguration.

    The stupid phone call to the widow of the green beret has surely infuriated black Americans, hasn’t it? Not that they haven’t grievances enough already.

    We have one year to go until the first important test of the public’s feelings on the matter. Much can go wrong for the oaf in the year to come.

  23. The EPA has been turned upside down and inside out. It is now being controlled by the very people that it was supposed to protect us from.

    It is now being run by opponents of the EPA, by the polluters themselves.

    This is a nightmare. The Trump era is a nightmare! A nightmare!

    http://www.msnbc.com/rachel-maddow-show/trump-gives-chemical-industry-insider-power-regulating-chemicals

    Up until fairly recently, Nancy Beck was an executive at the American Chemistry Council, the trade association for the nation’s chemical industry. As the New York Times reported over the weekend, however, Donald Trump’s administration has given Beck a job at the EPA – helping lead the agency’s toxic chemical unit.

    For years, the Environmental Protection Agency has struggled to prevent an ingredient once used in stain-resistant carpets and nonstick pans from contaminating drinking water.

    The chemical, perfluorooctanoic acid, or PFOA, has been linked to kidney cancer, birth defects, immune system disorders and other serious health problems.

    So scientists and administrators in the E.P.A.’s Office of Water were alarmed in late May when a top Trump administration appointee insisted upon the rewriting of a rule to make it harder to track the health consequences of the chemical, and therefore regulate it.

    It was, of course, Beck, the former American Chemistry Council executive, who demanded the revision. Voters who supported Donald Trump because they hoped he’d “drain the swamp,” preventing corporate insiders from helping call the shots in government agencies, are getting the exact opposite of what they wanted.

    But just to twist the knife a little more, consider what the political appointees at Trump’s EPA had to say when the New York Times called for a comment.

    “No matter how much information we give you, you would never write a fair piece,” Liz Bowman, an EPA spokesperson told the newspaper via email. “The only thing inappropriate and biased is your continued fixation on writing elitist clickbait trying to attack qualified professionals committed to serving their country.”

    And who’s Liz Bowman? Before she went to work at Trump’s EPA as a spokesperson, she was a spokesperson at … wait for it … the American Chemistry Council.

  24. Laurie, I assume you know about this:

    E.Scott Lloyd. One of many now working in government.

    After Jane Doe, a 17-year-old immigrant from Central America, found out she was pregnant last month, she decided to have an abortion. But the Office of Refugee Resettlement — the federal government agency charged with caring for unaccompanied immigrant minors once they enter the country — is prohibiting her from getting one.

    The federal government has a new policy that allows it to veto an unaccompanied minors’ abortion decision, and government officials are doing everything imaginable to prevent Ms. Doe from accessing abortion. They have instructed the shelter where Jane Doe is staying not to transport Ms. Doe or allow Ms. Doe’s court-appointed guardian to transport her to the health care center to have an abortion — essentially holding her hostage.

    The new policy is the creation of E. Scott Lloyd, the man President Trump appointed in March 2017 to head ORR.

  25. Dan #25
    Oct 23, 2017 at 9:24 pm

    The federal government has a new policy that allows it to veto an unaccompanied minors’ abortion decision, and government officials are doing everything imaginable to prevent Ms. Doe from accessing abortion.

    . . . . and presumably then denying US citizenship, to the child they have forced her to bear, – if they succeed!

    They have instructed the shelter where Jane Doe is staying not to transport Ms. Doe or allow Ms. Doe’s court-appointed guardian to transport her to the health care center to have an abortion — essentially holding her hostage.

    If the court appointed guardians are up to the job, if necessary, they firmly tell the shelter staff, that the rule of courts over-rides petty-minded bureaucratic maladministration, and that they have been appointed to take charge of arranging transport and visits! They will also call on the courts to jail anyone for contempt of court if they interfere with, and obstruct, the work of court appointees!

    However, I don’t see any requirement for the guardians to inform the centre staff in advance, of the confidential information about the nature of medical appointments which have been arranged!

  26. Meanwhile – everyone recognises the perils of climate change apart from two of the war-ravaged or backward states of the world:-

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-latin-america-41729297

    Nicaragua has signed the Paris climate agreement,
    meaning that
    the US and Syria are the only two countries
    not to be giving the accord their support.

    The deal unites the world’s nations in tackling climate change.

    Nicaragua refused to sign it last year, arguing that it did not go far enough to tackle the problem.

    In June President Donald Trump said the US would withdraw from the deal, but the rules of the agreement state that this cannot be done until 2020.

    The president said it was part of his “solemn duty to protect America” and he would seek a new deal that would not disadvantage US businesses.

    Scientists point out that work to implement the Paris accord must be stepped up if it is to have any chance of success.

    The agreement commits the US and 187 other countries to keeping rising global temperatures “well below” 2C above pre-industrial levels and “endeavour to limit” them even more, to 1.5C.

    Nicaraguan President Daniel Ortega indicated last week that he would sign the accord.

    “It is time for Nicaragua to sign the Paris Agreement,” Mr Ortega said on the official July 19 website.

    “Scientists from more developed countries, scientists working at Nasa, European scientists, everyone agrees that we must stop the process that is leading to the destruction of the planet,” he said.

    Mr Ortega’s government had previously argued that the accord did not put sufficient onus on wealthy countries to tackle climate change and was not ambitious enough in its objectives.

    Nicaragua has no oil and vigorously pursues green energy policies –
    more than 50% of its electricity is produced by geothermic, wind, solar, biomass and wave power.
    It is a country that is believed to be especially at risk from climate change.

    Syria is thought not to have signed the deal because it has been preoccupied by its civil war.

    So that just leaves one pariah government!

  27. There is a huge problem in Trump becoming a scapegoat. Many Americans approve of him (37%). Many more quite like what he’s doing (America First!) though they think him an idiot and not a little offensive. This group is the one that exercises me. They think they are covered for the duration by the anger directed at him. They have a scapegoat they are in no hurry to dispatch.

    Far far more Americans need to have his mud stick to them. They need as much motivation as possible to see him gone.

  28. Lousy situation no matter how you look at it. What was that you said about sanctions, Phil? I never thought of that. We’re always applying sanctions to other countries. But climate change effects everyone. Let them sanction the shit out of us. Bring on the sanctions.

    I am going to post this again. It frustrates me that no one is talking about this on the News. They’re too busy making money off of superfluous fluff, gossip: he-said-she said. And they’re always debating. That’s sheer entertainment. The debate is over. The verdict is in. Trump along with his administration and band of liars and thugs, needs to be legally destroyed, and ousted somehow. But the ratings are at an all-time high.

    Every parent that cares whether their kids get cancer or not and stays healthy should be on the streets.

    For years, the Environmental Protection Agency has struggled to prevent an ingredient once used in stain-resistant carpets and nonstick pans from contaminating drinking water.

    The chemical, perfluorooctanoic acid, or PFOA, has been linked to kidney cancer, birth defects, immune system disorders and other serious health problems.

    So scientists and administrators in the E.P.A.’s Office of Water were alarmed in late May when a top Trump administration appointee insisted upon the rewriting of a rule to make it harder to track the health consequences of the chemical, and therefore regulate it.

  29. phil rimmer #30
    Oct 24, 2017 at 8:38 am

    There is a huge problem in Trump becoming a scapegoat.

    I see with his usual posture of “All Mouth and no Trousers”, Trump is leveraging himself deeper into that frame!

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-us-canada-41729586

    Tennessee Senator Bob Corker has unleashed a blistering attack on US President Donald Trump, calling the president “utterly untruthful”.

    In a series of television interviews, Mr Corker accused the president of lying, adding that he debased the US and weakened its global standing.

    Mr Trump fired back on Twitter, calling the top Senator a “lightweight” who “couldn’t get re-elected”.

    Which if it was not about serious political issues, would be seen as comical projection from Trump – “the grand-master of feather-weight ad-homiem lying superficiality”!

    “He is purposely breaking down relationships we have around the world that had been useful to our nation,” Mr Corker said on CNN after Mr Trump criticised him on Twitter.

    “I think the debasement of our nation is what he’ll be remembered most for,” he said.

    The Foreign Relations Committee head, who was an early supporter of Mr Trump, added that the president has “great difficulty with truth”.

    There’s the quick Twitter trigger finger, the derogatory nicknames (“liddle” Bob Corker), the over-the-top hyperbole (“he couldn’t get elected dog catcher”).

    The party is learning the hard way that there’s only one Donald Trump – whether he’s a real-estate mogul, a reality TV star, a candidate or a president.

    If you question his leadership, his views or his attitude, he’ll unleash the whirlwind, no matter the consequences.

    When asked if he regretted supporting Mr Trump during the 2016 election, the Tennessee senator said: “Let’s just put it this way, I would not do that again.

    The tweets appeared to be in response to Mr Corker’s comments on ABC News’ Good Morning America, in which he suggested the president should stop interfering in the debate on tax legislation.

    Four ways Bob Corker skewered Donald Trump

    Mr Trump is planned to head to Capitol Hill on Tuesday
    to rally Senate Republicans on a White House-backed
    tax reform plan.

    Mr Corker's support for the plan could be crucial
    as Republicans seek to pass the legislation
    in the divided upper chamber.

    The Tennessee lawmaker also raised concern
    with the president's behaviour toward North Korea,
    saying Mr Trump "continues to kneecap
    his diplomatic representative, the secretary of state".

    He added that when it comes to diplomacy with Pyongyang,
    Mr Trump should "leave it to the professionals for a while".

    I think Bob Corker is a severe optimist, if he thinks Trump will leave anything to the professionals, when he can get applause from his twitter-brained supporters for “knowing better” than the specialists!

    Following Mr Trump’s attack, Mr Corker fired back on Twitter.

    Senator Bob Corker @SenBobCorker
    Same untruths from an utterly untruthful president.
    #AlertTheDaycareStaff

  30. Dan.

    I started with LGBT tourists being advised to avoid the country, then went to others over issues of xenophobia and gun crime.

    Regarding American imported products I think the boycott or banning of many products associated with wasteful production methods would be worth threatening.

    I wonder if we could impose tariffs on certain polluting imported cars say and use the income to favour every eco-in-class US vehicle import (eg Tesla) to help incentivise our own ev industry. (Dyson….).

    Working on it. We want the good US guys to win and smoothly take the reins when Trump and the other time-warp horrors from 1950 croak.

    Any thoughts?

  31. I think it’s a good idea to punish and isolate us in the most effective way possible, and on a large scale. It has to hurt and get a lot of coverage. LBGT tourists not coming over wouldn’t do much. That would be a gift to the haters. Maybe get masses of LBGT tourists, gun safety activists and Muslims, women, and everyone who wants to participate from around the globe, to come over and march in a march of unprecedented size: a march for human dignity, decency, freedom from oppression, and equality.

    You and your friends and maybe Alan should get together. I wouldn’t know how to begin a boycott or a ban. How has that been done before? I wouldn’t know how to organize something like that!

  32. Dan #35
    Oct 24, 2017 at 3:19 pm

    I think it’s a good idea to punish and isolate us in the most effective way possible, and on a large scale. It has to hurt and get a lot of coverage.

    If Trump starts throwing up tariff barriers and carries on opting out of trade agreements and international co-operative treaties, his “America first” policies, will end up as America isolated and alone, if/when other countries retaliate, banding together with their own separate trade groupings preferentially trade with each other! Retaliatory action will not be instant, but could be long-lasting once it gets going!

    American products, “non-regulated to Trump standards”, which do not meet international standards for non-toxicity, pollution, or health and safety, will simply be unmarketable outside of the US and a few corrupt third world countries.

    Diverting investment money into silly walls and stranded-asset coal companies, will also hold America back and make it less competitive! – As will opting out of the rapidly expanding renewable energy market in any states which follow his lead!
    Of course some of the technically advanced US states and companies, will simply ignore him, and carry on their research and development anyway!

    Any companies appointing Trumpies in place of science and engineering staff, will punish themselves.

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