Wednesday, June 5, 2013

Republican War on Clean Air and Water

I keep hearing republicans get upset when you point out they really want “dirty air and water”, they say that’s a nice liberal talking point. It’s not a talking point, it’s fact and their voting record proves it. Since 2011 congressional republicans have voted over 300 times on bills that favor corporations while doing harm to the environment including

130 Votes weakening the EPA

54 Votes weakening the Dept. of Energy

125 Votes lower pollution standards

55 votes to repeal clean energy

45 votes to promote more drilling esp. offshore


Clean Air act

This was passed in the 1970’s and signed into law by Richard Nixon, it has reduced pollution by over 50% while helping keep many pollution related illnesses under control. This congress has waged a war on this act trying to gut it, even trying to repeal the Health Based Standards meaning that corporations would now be allowed to pollute and knowing make people sick if it was best for business. That’s right they would now do a “Cost Benefits Analysis” to decide if it was in the best interest of corporations to give people cancer.

They also voted to repeal the regulation of mercury release and block the regulation on emissions from incinerator and power plants and finally to stop regulations on the release of sulfur dioxide and nitrogen - these ALONE prove they want dirtier air and water if it means more profits for corporations.

Independent studies have shown these attacks on the EPA will lead to

34,000 deaths

15,000 heart attacks

400,000 cases of asthma

280 Billion a year in added healthcare costs.


Clean Water Act

Passed in 1972 the goal of this act was to improve the abysmal water quality in many streams and rivers so that rivers like the one in Ohio would no longer be so polluted that they would catch fire. This act has reduced pollution by over 70%.

Despite all these benefit’s the GOP voted to strip the EPA of authority to set water quality standards or enforce the standards already set on discharge limits. They blocked funding that allows the EPA to protect swamps and run off water and even voted to repeal the restrictions on dumping pesticides into rivers and lakes.

To say they don’t want dirty water and air is a bold face lie and their voting record proves they do. They care more about corporate profits then their own children’s health but then again the pollution doesn’t really effect them as you never see oil rigs or drilling on their multi acre estate and they can drink bottled water and bill it to taxpayers as an expense. When they could not get away with stripping environmental protections away they did the next best thing and voted to cut EPA funding by over 5 billion dollars or over 40% of their budget. These are just a small portion of the over 300 anti-environment laws republicans have tried to pass so next time anyone like Sean Hannity or any republican tells you that they care about the environment just tell them to “prove it” because you can prove your argument since we know how republicans voted.

To me when you do a cost benefits analysis of profits over health - Health wins every time but sadly to republicans profits always win.

Tuesday, June 4, 2013

Why republicans are wrong on private sector vs public sector

How long have we been hearing the same old talking points by republicans, here is a look at some of the common talking points and the facts that prove them wrong.

1. Private sector can do it better and cheaper than the government

There are so many examples of this not being true, from private prisons costing more money and being less safe to the public but I’ll just stick with one, private military contractors vs. the military.

When we invaded Iraq we saw the explosion of private contractors, no coincidently a large portion of the money went to the firm that was run by the vice president. These contracts were being paid for things that our military used to handle like setting up bases, laundry, cooking and even security but unlike our military these soldiers for hire were immune from many laws including murder. Army sergeants would earn up to 200.00 per day in Iraq while their private sector counterparts cost taxpayers about 1,200.00 per day. When the military vehicles break down they have to be fixed but when contractors cars break down and in some cases just get a flat tire they abandon them and bill the taxpayers for a new one. Former high ranking Halliburton employees came forward that American taxpayers are being billed 45$ for each case of Coke and 100$ for each bag of laundry washed and pad an astounding 1 million dollars to house 100 Halliburton employees for 3 months in a luxury hotel as our brave men and women stayed in tents. The worst part is unlike our military these contracts are not liable for anything they do wrong including all the American soldiers who died in the shower because KBR used faulty wiring to save money while billing taxpayers for premium.

2. Government needs to stop picking winners and losers

We heard this when the story broke about Solyndra going bankrupt, yes the taxpayers lost 500 million dollars but what they neglect to point out is that the money going to green energy companies is a loan they have to pay back while the money going to fossil fuel companies is a subsidy that never needs to be paid back. Oil companies received over 8 billion dollars in subsidies last year alone and have been receiving government handouts and bailouts for over 100 years. You often hear republicans saying we need to end the loans for green energy companies but they refuse to even consider ending all the tax breaks for oil and gas companies.

While most green energy companies rise and fall on their own the fossil fuel companies have been helped out by government spending and inventions. The big thing in today’s oil and gas industry is fracking, it’s a controversial process that pumps poison into the ground to break the rocks so that oil and gas is released. It’s innovative and took years and millions if not billions of dollars to perfect but cost the private sector no time or money since it was invented, funded and perfected by the United States Government at taxpayer expense starting in the 1970’s so why aren’t we asking for that money back?

3. Private Sector Healthcare is way to go

This is the big lie, there are no facts to back this up only scare tactics. Every country in the world that has Universal healthcare pays a lot less then we do in America and sometimes ½ as much. The care is no worse then it is here and when you hear “why do people from Canada come to America” the answer is simple, because they can afford to. What they don’t tell you is that most of these people are coming for elective surgery that they can get in Canada and other countries but have a longer wait. What they don’t tell you is that when you’re feeling sick in Canada you can go to the doctor and get treated meaning that your cancer can be diagnosed early and treated before it becomes fatal.

Most of America’s insurance is spent on end of life care, something that could have been prevented if you were diagnosed and treated on time. You also don’t hear a lot of stories about people who choose to die because they didn’t want to leave their family homeless or bankrupt in Canada like you do here in America. More then 20,000 people die each year because they can’t afford to see a doctor or are denied life saving care by their insurance company. It’s a myth that the hospital has to cure your illness, there are plenty of stories about people who were left to die after the insurance companies denied their care, and having gone through this can tell you it puts a whole new light on the insurance and medical industry and anyone who watched someone die from a treatable disease to save private insurance money will tell you how horrible it is.


Yes there are some things the private sector can do better then the government but there are a lot of things the government can do better, faster and cheaper. If we had gutted the government like today’s republican party we would never have gotten the internet or several medications that have saved people lives. I find it ironic that people making 180,000.00 a year like congressmen and senators would say that the government can’t create jobs or wealth when to most people that much money IS wealth. These same people call someone down on their luck who may need food or medical assistance as “takers” while they will be receiving a government pension and healthcare for the rest of their lives.