The answer is that he probably curls up with a nice bedtime story like Ayn Rand’s Atlas Shrugged, kisses the picture of Grover Norquist on his nightstand, and counts email servers until e fades into blissful slumber.
Unfortunately, for the rest of the United States this no-talent a$$ clown of an elected representative is one of the primary oversight authorities as the chairman of the House Oversight and Government Affairs Committee. This committee is normally tasked with conducting hearings and investigations into the behavior of government officials. You know, like someone using an unauthorized email server. Where have I heard about that before?
You would be led to believe that given the current presidential administration’s inability to conduct itself within any reasonable standard that the cries of “foul!” from this committee would be heard loud and clear. You would be guessing wrong.
Does Jason Chaffetz feel there is a need to investigate the disturbing ties between former Trump administration member Michael Flynn and Russia? Nope. Michael Flynn had contact with agents of the Russian government as a private citizen to discuss diplomatic matters, which is against the law, but Jason Chaffetz has decided “no blood, no foul” because there is no political hay to make. Actually doing the job you were elected to do conflicts with marching orders from the Koch Brothers or whatever organization is paying your way these days.
This is the same member of Congress who thinks that the constituents showing up to his town hall are paid protesters because they disagree with his right wing whack-a-doo agenda.
I would hope that the larger voting public would see that their elected representatives have no interest in serving their interests as long as they will vote on single issues or party lines out of a dogged loyalty that does not align with current reality.
On the bright side this is the same member of Congress who got owned by a ten year old when she asked if he believed in science.
Posted in Politics, Uncategorized
Tagged conflict of interest, Congress, corruption, diplomacy, Donald J. Trump, email server, espionage, House Oversight and Government Affairs Committee, Jason Chaffetz, Michael Flynn, Russia
A while back I called Rod Blum a coward. I stand by that assertion because as the current presidential administration has shown itself to be nothing more than a totalitarian farce masquerading as a modern democracy he has remained silent.
How quiet? Just try and find something that Rod Blum has said about anything that has transpired over the past couple of weeks.
His Twitter account is basically a bunch of motherhood, apple pie, and America content for the right wing set. About the only topical tweet was a comment on the March for Life.
His Facebook page is more of the same minus a recent comment about the nomination of Judge Neil Gorsuch to take the vacant seat on the Supreme Court.
I think it is high time that we up the pressure on the Congressman from the 1st District of Iowa to start answering where he stands on positions taken by the leader of his party—Donald Trump—and actions taken by his party.
I will call his office in Washington D.C. and Cedar Rapids, IA every day until I receive adequate answers to the following questions:
- When will Rod Blum hold a public forum in Cedar Rapids—the largest city in his district—to answer constituent questions?
- Does Rod Blum support the repeal of the Affordable Care Act?
- Does Rod Blum support proposed changes to Medicare?
- Does Rod Blum support proposed changes to Social Security?
- Does Rod Blum support the recent restrictions on entry into the United States put in place by executive order?
- Does Rod Blum support a congressional investigation into the Russian hacking that may have influenced the U.S. electoral process?
- Does Rod Blum support a congressional investigation into Donald Trump’s potential conflicts of interest?
I will provide updates, including the most recent comments from staff and additional questions, on the following linked page.
If you want to make calls yourself use this handy website to assist you. Let me know where your representative stands on these issues.
It will be official in a little bit, but Donald J. Trump is the President of the United States. If the recent confirmation hearings are any indication we are in for many years of incompetent officials, corrupt hangers on, and a Republican led Congress that cares more about scoring long sought after political points rather than actually helping people.
Get used to it because according to experts the spate of gerrymandering in 2010 will continue in 2020. To actually flip control of Congress to Democrats would take an estimated Presidential election vote share of approximately 60%. The best that we can hope for is a prevention of the most extreme Republican agenda via the filibuster and that the Trump administration is so horrible that people actually wake up. I am not holding my breath.
On to the links…
Iowa to See Fewer ‘Nice’ Days—Freaking climate change. Yuck it up all you want about global warming making winter milder—which sucks for people who actually like winter—but a world where Iowa is more humid in the summer is the definition of hell.
People Still Don’t Know Obamacare is Just a Nickname for the ACA—Jimmy Kimmel may be doing it on late night television, but there are a lot of voters looking around wondering when Trump is going to repeal Obamacare and what that means for their state exchange or Medicare expansion. Guess what morons? It’s going to suck.
Lessons for Navigating the Trump Economy — Drawn from the Developing World—Get ready for corruption on a yuge scale. Imagine if any of Hilary Clinton’s potential cabinet secretaries had been accused of making stock purchases and writing favorable legislation? Republicans would be livid. Now that it is their guy all we hear are crickets. What a joke.
Trump’s Tax Trumpery—Get ready for the tax cut idol to make its appearance and for Republicans to prostrate themselves before its purity. However, as this article lays out, tax cuts do not produce widespread economic growth because the benefits are concentrated on a few individuals. You know, like the 8 people who have assets worth as much as half of the world’s population.
China Halts Over 100 Coal Power Projects—China is trying to kick its dirty coal habit. It will be hard. It will probably be expensive. It might just be the last hope we have for the climate.
The Year Coal Collapsed: 2016 was a Turning Point for Britain’s Electricity—Few countries are as tied historically to the industrial revolution and the concurrent rise of coal power as the United Kingdom. That same United Kingdom now gets less than 10% of its electricity from coal. It can be done.
World Needs to Invest $25 trillion in New Oil Capacity over Next 25 years—That number is crazy. Why not invest $1 trillion per year in renewables? Oh right, this is coming from the guy running Saudi Arabia’s state owned oil company.
The Sleeping Giant Stirs: Russia Revs Up Renewable Tech—I suppose with the incoming administration that Russia is our new bae. At least the news is not all bad in Putin-land.
When Will the Chevrolet Bolt Glide Into Your State? Find Out Here—Do you want a Chevy Bolt? Get ready to wait unless you live in a state that did not vote for Donald Trump:
Go Ahead, Wander Your Way—I spend a lot of time outdoors and there is a lot of judgment by people enjoying the outdoors. Does it really matter why you are getting outside if you are still getting outside? I say that it does not.
The Hermit Who Inadvertently Shaped Climate-Change Science—I wonder if true eccentrics are gone from our lives forever in a world where everything is documented on Facebook or Instagram. Long live the freaks.
Posted in Linkage, Uncategorized
Tagged Billy Barr, Chevrolet Bolt, China, climate change, coal, corruption, crony capitalism, Donald Trump, EV, High Country News, Iowa, linkage, links, renewable energy, Russia, Saudi Arabia, Vox.com
A little heavy on the food related links this week. It was nothing intentional, I just found a lot of stories about food and the modern food system to be fascinating this week.
On to the links…
Prius Success Undermines EV Attacks—Does anyone remember when the Toyota Prius was the target of attacks by the right wing blowhards? Not since the Prius became one of the bestselling vehicles in the world. What will the story be with the Chevrolet Volt and Nissan Leaf in a couple of years?
How Cheap will Algae Bio-Fuel Really Get—Maybe the goal should not be parity with gasoline—granted, the price of a gallon of gasoline does not include the externalities of pollution cost or wars or propping up bad regimes—but rather commercial scale and availability. If I were able to purchase a biofuel made from algae the price premium would be worth it.
A Failed Food System—A food system is not just about production. It is comprised of production, distribution, and nutrition. This article about India highlights that it does not matter if you increase your food production by 50% if you cannot effectively distribute that food. The problems may be inefficient infrastructure, too much corruption, or simply lack of processes, but the end result is that people do not get enough to eat.
Is Your Supermarket Chucking Foods Before Expiration—In India, the food goes to waste at distribution centers. In the U.S., our supermarkets throw food away before it is expired. The system is doomed to failure.
Small Scale Slaughterhouses Keeping it Local—One major problem with getting truly local meat is that the approved facilities to slaughter and process an animal are getting fewer and farther between. Not to mention these facilities are often controlled by the large firms responsible for so many bad things about meat today.
Why Do Humans Crave Crispy Food—Why do we crave crispy food? Because it is oh so good. Oh wait, there might be a scientific reason why.
Your Burger Just Got a Little Safer…Thanks to Uncle Sam—Sometimes I think we need to say thanks in spite of Uncle Sam. I love how the major meat packers try to persuade regulators that certain strands of E. coli are benign additions to meat and thus need not be regulated. Huh? It’s E. coli. Like the famous line in Fast Food Nation: there’s shit in the meat.
The Food Movement’s Final Frontier: Taking Care of Workers—Whether it’s grape pickers in California or tomato pickers in Florida or illegal immigrants working in a packing plant in Iowa the food movement needs to make sure that the workers are taken care of as well as we expect to be taken care of by the food these people help produce. There can be no real change unless social justice, environmental justice, and good food intersect.
Disney to Stop Allowing Junk Food Advertising—This is how things start. A company decides to take action on an issue where it has a critical mass—like Disney does with kids—and suddenly people start realizing the world has not flown off its axis. Do not think it’s possible? Just look at the cigarette industry.
Reagan was a Keynesian—It is an article of faith held by most conservatives that Ronald Reagan slashed taxes and spending while beating back the Soviet menace himself. That might be a little bit over the top, but just wait until the Republican nominating convention. I just love Paul Krugman detailing how Reagan was not quite the darling conservatives have made him out to be in the past two plus decades.
China Wants Foreign Embassies to Stop Commenting on Air Quality—This is almost something I expect to see from James Inhofe. There is no global warming because I do not recognize its existence. Of course you cannot say the same thing about god. Huh? It’s amazing that people forget just how clean the air has gotten. Here is Pittsburgh in the 1940s:
Of course, here is Beijing today:
Posted in Linkage
Tagged advertising, air quality, algae, Beijing, biofuel, China, Climate Progress, corruption, crispy, Disney, distribution, E. coli, electric vehicle, EV, food, fried, hybrid, India, junk food, Keynes, linkage, Mother Jones, NPR, nutrition, Obama, Paul Krugman, Pittsburgh, pond scum, Prius, Reagan, slaughterhouse, supermarket, Think Progress, Toyota, USDA, waste