Tag Archives: Steve King

Friday Linkage 2/28/2020

Something about leap year just throws me off.  My mind is so wrapped around twenty-eight days in February that an extra day just seems…wrong.

Granted, a lot of stuff seems wrong right now.  That seems to be the theme of our world.
On to the links…

Is This the Year Democrats Finally Take Down Steve King?—We can hope so.  However, his potential primary opponent is Randy Feenstra is just another right wing extremist with a gentler demeanor.

The Green Miles—If I was Jeff Bezos—I realize that this article is in a paper that he owns—I would spend some of my $10 billion dollar pledge on efforts just like this.  How much good could be done by reforesting mountaintop removal mining sites across Appalachia.

How Can Jeff Bezos Spend $10 Billion Fighting Climate Change? We Have a Few Ideas.—See above.

Environment and Animal Rights Activists Being Referred to Prevent Programme—Green is the new red.  Across the globe environmental activists are being lumped together with the worst violent extremists in a bid to stifle protest.

Renewable Energy Could Power the World by 2050—We know that it is possible.  How do we make it probable?

Australia’s Electricity Market Must be 100% Renewables by 2035 to Achieve Net Zero by 2050—The path is clear.

Want Cheaper Electricity? Xcel Energy Wants to Help — If You’re Willing to do Your Laundry at 2 a.m.—Want to deal with the problem of the “duck curve?”  Institute time of day or time of use pricing.  Between shifting behaviors and advances in energy storage we can deploy ever increasing amounts of renewable energy.

The False Promise of “Renewable Natural Gas”—When a fossil fuel company promises something is renewable it is likely to be a Trojan Horse.  Do not trust fossil fuel companies bearing gifts.

Drax Power Plant to Stop Burning Coal—The closure of the largest coal burning power plant in England is now four years ahead of schedule.  Coal is in its death throes.

Closing Of Coal Power Plants Means Debates On What To Do With The Water They Used—Coal plants use a lot of water.  One of the benefits on moving to renewables is a release of those water rights for other uses.

Most Used Wind Turbine Blades End Up in Landfills. Colorado is Part of the Push to Make the Industry Greener.—This is the latest critique of wind power from the right wing.  As if fossil fuels have no waste products.  Never mind comparing the relative harm of a windmill blade versus fracking wastewater or mine tailings.  Which one would you want in your community?

How to Reduce Your Food’s Carbon Footprint, in 2 Charts—The moral of the story is really eat less meat:

carbon_impact_of_food

Meat Company Faces Heat Over ‘Cattle Laundering’ in Amazon Supply Chain—You cannot trust the source of your meat unless you know the rancher or farmer.  The supply chains are too large and too complex.  The meat companies also have a vested financial interest in keeping their supply chains as opaque as possible.

What Happens When You Give Up Plastic—I do not know if the goal needs to be zero plastic.  It may be more beneficial for everyone to aim for no stupid plastic.

Oh, No, Not Knotweed!—I have not had the “pleasure” of experiencing knotweed first hand, but everyone I know fears this invasive.

Friday Linkage 11/9/2018

The midterm election is over save for the inevitable recounts, runoffs, and lawsuits.  So, it is not really over.  Heck, if you are anything like Donald Trump you will never get over the last election.  Just saying.

If anyone thought that Democrats taking back the House of Representatives was going to serve as a check on Trump’s worst instincts think again.  Within twenty four hours he was already back to his Orwellian self when he held a press conference full of combative lies and followed it up with a Soviet style doctored video to support his banishment of Jim Acosta from the White House.  We live in strange times indeed.

On to the links…

How ‘Makers’ Make the Classroom More Inclusive—Maybe we need to make school a little less about preparing for tests and more about making things.  I do not care if kids are making art or wooden clocks or theater productions because being responsible for the creation of something is instruction in and of itself.

Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke might Face a Criminal Investigation—Right now is not a good time to be a grifter in the employ of Donald Trump.  Ryan Zinke is not facing an ethics complaint, he is facing a freaking criminal investigation for being a con artist and thief.

UN says Earth’s Ozone Layer is Healing—It was not all political news.  Too bad China is not honoring commitments to phase out certain ozone destroying compounds and is, instead, allowing for unregulated use.

Voters Raise Nevada Renewables Goal to 50%, NV Energy Has $2B Plans—Nevada’s goal of 15% renewable energy by 2025 was rejected by voters in favor of 50% by 2030.  Way to go Nevada.

Navajo Nation Eyes Utility-Scale Solar with Growing Interest—The Navajo Nation possesses a lot of land with a lot of solar potential in the southwest United States.  Think about some of that land being deployed to produce clean, green utility scale solar fed into the grid.

Indiana Utility Submits Plan to Move from Coal to Renewables—Losing Indiana to renewable energy is pretty bad for coal because the Hoosier State is surprisingly reactionary in its right wing attitudes toward anything that might be labelled progressive.  You know that the economics favor renewables when this is the headline.

Scottish Utility goes 100% Renewable, Pushes Electric Vehicles too—If it’s not Scottish, it’s crap!  Could not help myself.  I love me some So I Married an Axe Murderer.

British Renewables Hits 42 Gigawatts & Surpasses Fossil Fuels—I am sure that someone will put a half dozen caveats on these numbers, but renewables are a big part of the grid.  There was a time when most “experts,” probably just shills hired by coal and gas companies, said that renewables could not be more than a sliver of the grid because of unreliability, etc.  Reality has proven them wrong.

The Secret Power of the Flexitarian—The power is in being flexible in achieving your goal.

American Diet Changes Gut Bacteria of Immigrants—This might not be so bad, but apparently the resulting changes lead to an increase in conditions like diabetes, obesity, etc.

One Third of Britons has Drastically Reduced Meat Consumption—This was not done in response to any major external stimuli like a war or depression.  Imagine what is possible in this world if we would just decide to live less destructive lives.

Fish Fingers Surprisingly Sustainable, say Conservationists—Fish sticks, or fish fingers to those of you across the pond, are the offal of the seafood aisle.  In my house fish sticks still get some love, but we also happen to be big fans of catfish.

Finland: Where Second-Hand Comes First—Think about the impact if we all thought about buying something secondhand before buying new.  Sure, new stuff would need to be made to feed the consumption cycle at some point but a world of more durable and high quality goods is a better place.

Embracing Inconvenience—We could all use a little more inconvenience in our lives.

Iowa’s Election Post Mortem

Iowa did its part in providing a check on the Trumping of America by flipping two Republican held seats in the House of Representatives.

Abby Finkenauer defeated Rod Blum in the 1st district race.  The result was largely expected nationally and locally as Rod Blum was just about the worst caricature of Washington D.C. you could imagine.  I am no fan of Rod Blum and look forward to being represented by someone who is not as ethically challenged as Iowa’s Splenda version of Donald Trump.

A little less expected was Cindy Axne’s defeat of David Young in the 3rd district.  Polling was kind of all over the place—which has to be considered the new normal in U.S. politics—but Axne ended up winning by a comfortable margin.

The most surprising result of the night, in my opinion, was Kim Reynolds’ victory over Fred Hubbell.  The margin was not large–~33,000 votes—and if I add up the vote totals for the four house races the Democrats’ total was within less than 1,000 votes of Reynolds’ total.  So, there was some serious ticket splitting going on somewhere in Iowa.  It looks like we get a few more years of tax giveaways to multi-national corporations, health care privatization that costs more money, and budget shenanigans in the name of tax cuts for the wealthy.  Welcome to the Republican Party in 2018!

Iowa has become a messy state politically.  It was a harbinger of Barack Obama’s two victories, but it swung hard for Trump in 2016.  Now it appears as if the state is swinging back toward something resembling sanity.  It is my opinion that this bodes well for the election in 2020 as Iowa will be one of the states that is hotly contested despite its low number of electoral votes.  Combine that with the first in the nation caucus for presidential hopefuls and it adds up to an eventful two years ahead of the Hawkeye State.

Unfortunately, Iowa is still stuck with the stain on humanity that is Steve King.  The 4th district came within 8,000 votes of sending Steve King to the speaking circuit of white nationalists and neo-Nazis.  He won, but not by a lot, and I hope that the Democratic Party works hard over the next two years to build up both a candidate and ground game to unseat that racist clown.

Friday Linkage 4/7/2017

At what point do we look into the abyss and see nothing but Donald Trump’s searing ineptitude staring back at us?  Every time the man goes to the podium with a world leader to his right he stumbles through a word salad of “very this” and “tremendous that” without ever actually saying something of substance.

Every time he steps to the podium I am reminded of Robin Williams’ line in Dead Poets Society:

becdb2d465a2b75353959dea0de75b7c

Unfortunately laziness is now the currency of the land.

On to the links…

The Question I Get Asked the Most—Take a moment and read the entirety of Bill McKibben’s piece at Resilience.org.  Think about the meaning and do something.

Can Steve King be Defeated? History Says Probably Not—People in his district love Steve King.  He is one of the most embarrassing human beings in politics and the people in his district will reelect him in a walk in 2018.   Why?  They are also the same people who are probably standing behind Donald Trump and Bill O’Reilly.

Why Is Trump Ignoring These Good Heartland Jobs?—Why?  It does not fit his easy narrative and the man is lazy.  It does not matter that renewable energy employs more people than coal and that the renewable energy jobs sector is growing.  It also is a narrative that does not line the pockets of Koch Industries and other Trump lovers.

6 Charts That Show Trump Isn’t Stopping the Renewable Energy Revolution Any Time Soon—I hope the conclusion is right.  I just hope that there is enough inertia to overcome the amazing level of stupidity coming from Washington D.C. right now.

US Coal Production Hits 38 Year Low—Here is the thing.  As coal production volumes fall there is a self-perpetuating cycle of decline that follows because it is a capital intensive business.  As coal gets more expensive to mine it gets more expensive to make coal fired electricity, which leads to utilities closing down coal fired power plants.  This causes coal demand to fall further which causes the price of mining coal to increase.  So on and so forth.

While Trump Promotes Coal, Chile and Others are Turning to Cheap Sun Power—Again, it does not fit his lazy narrative.  Plus, solar jobs don’t allow you put on cool hard hats and gesticulate:

ktbt7oppbvaejaiwosx7

Wastewater: The Best Hidden Energy Source You’ve Never Heard Of—I hesitate to call this renewable energy, so why don’t we go with recovered energy.  Nonetheless, in a system where we are looking for every kilowatt hour that can be generated from non-fossil fuels this is a potential source of goodness.

What Pollutes the Urban Mississippi? Lawns, Dogs and Lots of Pavement Runoff—We may not be able to make rural communities do something about the runoff from farm fields because the rightward lurch of those areas has made progress a daunting task, but there is a lot that can be done in our urban watersheds.

Pot’s Cousin Explored as Viable Crop Option for Minnesota—Illinois is talking about legalization and Minnesota is exploring hemp.  Paying taxes and giving rural communities another crop option is the death knell of federal prohibition.

Ten Cool Facts About Hemp From the NoCo Expo—Did you have an acquaintance in college who spent hours telling you all the cool facts about hemp that “the man” would not allow to become mainstream because reasons?  That person is mainstream now.

Peak Auto? These Charts Point to Industry, U.S. Economy Concerns—We may be “over auto-ed” as a country.  The implications for the economy are fairly dramatic.

The Couple who Coaxed 300 Acres of Barren Farmland Back into Lush Forest—It’s only 300 acres, but it is also only two people.  We have the tools to make the world a better place.  Let’s get cracking.

There it is…

It came in a little late for me to add to my normal Monday post about the happenings in the right wing whack-o-verse.  This morning Steve King, one of the leading dispensers of hate speech and ignorance in Congress who also happens to be from Iowa, endorsed Ted Cruz.

King made his endorsement by saying:

I believe Ted Cruz is the candidate that’s the answer to my prayers. A candidate whom God will use to restore the soul of America.

Never mind Steve King believing that God herself has answered his personal prayers for a political candidate to come forward in order to “restore the soul of America.”  If someone switched the word “God” with “Aqua Buddha” there would be a line of orderlies waiting to take that person to crazy town.

Apparently, this is important because Steve King fancies himself a kingmaker in Iowa.  Now he has endorsed a candidate with poll numbers lower than three other candidates.

Oh well, crazy deserves some crazy company.

The Joni Ernst Watch 10/19/2015

When it comes to Joni “Make ‘em squeal” Ernst or Steve King it’s clown shoes all day, every day. Recently, the conversation in Iowa has turned away from our homegrown whack-a-doos and focused on the nutcase circus that will be the Republican caucus.

Steve King is really enjoying his moment in the sun as the right wing clown car is circling the state of Iowa trying to get his endorsement in some misguided faith that it represents true political gravitas. Given his new popularity, King has really been mouthing off lately which for him is saying something considering his past statements about…um, everything.

Apparently, he does not believe Muslims can assimilate into American culture:

But I can’t find models of the folks that, say, do the hajj to Mecca, I can’t find models where they’ve assimilated into the broader culture of civilization wherever they’ve gone.

What does this puffed up joker even mean by the words he speaks? I am guessing that he wants to see instances where Muslims came to a new country, renounced their faith, and became Christian. That might satisfy him.

He just couldn’t let things go and like right wing icon Joe Arpaio King decided to let loose his love of tents in the desert:

Then send them into Saudi Arabia, where they have the air-conditioned tents at Mecca. Those tents are not busy for 11 months out of the year, and they would assimilate into that civilization like a hand into a glove.

This is the same guy who thinks that voters will reward the Republican Party in November 2016 with even more leadership authority based on their excellent stewardship over the last couple of years. Good luck with that.

When confronted with conflicting realities most Republican candidates are best advised to just turtle. It will be better for your brand. Take Ted Cruz. The Calgary, Canada born senator from Texas recently spewed some right wing garbage about immigration and deportation while standing in front of a bible verse that is commonly interpreted to be about helping immigrants.

Maybe Steve King just needs to jump on the Trump bandwagon. In Nevada Trump is leading with 38% of the vote in recent polling.

One of the great tropes of the right wing is that the Jews were persecuted because they did not resist the pogroms of Nazi Germany. Never mind that this was the same militaristic state that crushed the combined armies of the France and the United Kingdom in stunning fashion. Keith Ablow, who somehow still manages to make people watching Fox News believe he has some kind of authority on some topics, really doubled down:

Granted, hindsight is 20/20. But it turns out it was a bad idea for any Jew to have turned over a gun. It was a bad idea for any Jew to have boarded a train. It was a bad idea for any Jew to have passed through a gate into a camp. It was a bad idea for any Jew to do any work at any such camp. It was a bad idea for any Jew to not attempt to crush the skull or scratch out the eyes of any Nazi who turned his back for one moment. And every bullet that would have been fired into a Nazi coming to a doorway to confiscate a gun from a Jew would have been a sacred bullet.

Sure Keith, a police state backed by a modern military was going to back down from a core belief because someone owned a handgun.

The Joni Ernst Watch 10/5/2015

When it comes to Joni “Make ‘em squeal” Ernst or Steve King it’s clown shoes all day, every day. Recently, the conversation in Iowa has turned away from our homegrown whack-a-doos and focused on the nutcase circus that will be the Republican caucus.

Representatives Steve King and Rod Blum—both of Iowa and both of questionable judgment—voted against the continuing resolution to keep the government operating.

It is always a good idea to elect people to government whose sole mission is to see how bad they can run the government.

Steve King cannot figure out why Planned Parenthood remains popular:

I haven’t paid any attention to the polls. But am I surprised? Yes. That would explain some of the reasons why the leadership is not committing to defund.

Maybe the reason lies in the fact that Planned Parenthood provides a lot of services to women that would go unmet if the organization were defunded? But keep banging that drum. Over and over again.

However, Steve King is not as bad as House Oversight Committee Chair Jason Chaffetz who presented this horrible, no good, very bad graph:

BS_anti_PP_chart

See the problem? That’s right. In Republican World 327,000 is bigger than 935,573. Your “liberal math facts” do not apply when there is hay to be made with right wingers.

Chaffetx probably learned how to make graphs and present “facts” from the same jokers who put on the Values Voters Summit. The final session of the recent conference was entitled “How to Argue the Social Issues with Liberals and Libertarians” and was held in a standing room only conference room.  I find it interesting that the Values Voters Summit is concerned with libertarians as well, but oh well.

Remember, Rush Limbaugh is the standard bearer of what the right wing believes. Limbaugh now postulates that NASA is just a tool for “Muslim outreach.”   I do not even know what to say in response to logic smackdowns like that.

The Joni Ernst Watch 9/28/2015

When it comes to Joni “Make ‘em squeal” Ernst or Steve King it’s clown shoes all day, every day. Recently, the conversation in Iowa has turned away from our homegrown whack-a-doos and focused on the nutcase circus that will be the Republican caucus.

Joni Ernst has been quiet lately, but maybe she has just been drowned out by the circus that is the Republican party these days. It looks like she is going to take a stab at rolling back clean water rules.

Does Steve King think he is “man-splaining” to Pope Francis:

I think that it would be better for the Vatican to focus more on theology, and less on this thing that they’ve now had to have a name change from global warming to climate change.

Then again, King just seems to hate on everybody:

The people on our side who pay any attention to this at all understand sharia is incompatible with the Constitution and that a sincerely devout Muslim — I might say, a devout Islamist — cannot seriously give an oath to support the Constitution, because it’s incompatible with his faith.

So, John Boehner just up and quit. No seriously, he behaved just like everybody’s fat, racist friend on South Park Eric Cartman:

cartman-screw-you-guys

Jeb! does not like multiculturalism very much:

We should not have a multicultural society.

Well, that was emphatic.

God damn, Sarah Palin is a moron.

BTW, who hasn’t confused Leonardo da Vinci with Leonardo DiCaprio?

The Joni Ernst Watch 9/21/2015

When it comes to Joni “Make ‘em squeal” Ernst or Steve King it’s clown shoes all day, every day. Recently, the conversation in Iowa has turned away from our homegrown whack-a-doos and focused on the nutcase circus that will be the Republican caucus.

Consitution Day came and went on September 17th…what, you did not throw a party? Steve King was not going to let the day go by without issuing a statement. Naturally, it was full of Republican word soup like founding fathers, God, Constitution, God, history, God…you get the idea.

Steve King apparently wants America to look like it did when the Constitution was signed over two hundred years ago. On a talk show with a host known for advocating the modern enslavement of refugees King said this on the demographics of immigration:

Tell me how you want America to look, because America’s being transformed because of immigration policy and I’m like Ann Coulter, I like the America we had.

What he is really saying is Republican code for “I want to see a white America.”

I wish that I could pull something positive out of Wednesday night’s Republican debate in California. Maybe Rand Paul’s surprisingly accurate statement that the Iraq War was a major mistake and the ramifications of that war are directly tied to the rise of ISIL…ISIS…whatever.

Donald Trump is a bully and a blowhard…and he is exactly who the Republicans deserve after years of coded phrases about liberals being “weak” or “European” or “kind of like the French.” You want a manly man? You got him now and it is a joy to watch. Never mind that this “manly man” has declared bankruptcy several times, is from New York City, and never served in the military. Just saying.

Someone let Chris Christie on the stage and he continued to lie. His favorite trope right now is to claim that he was appointed U.S. attorney on September 10th, 2001. See, he was on the front lines right before the attacks of September 11th. Oh wait, he was actually appointed U.S. attorney on December 7th, 2001. It’s a few months difference, but isn’t that just a technicality among friends?

Let’s just chalk it up to a yelling match on the playground. It did give us some quality reaction shots though:

trumpfaces

Nothing could prepare me for the horror of the post-debate “spin room” where Jezebel’s correspondent was brave enough to tread.

The Joni Ernst Watch 9/14/2015

When it comes to Joni “Make ‘em squeal” Ernst or Steve King it’s clown shoes all day, every day. Recently, the conversation in Iowa has turned away from our homegrown whack-a-doos and focused on the nutcase circus that will be the Republican caucus.

Steve King is really going after birthright citizenship. Now he seems to think that Congress can act to end the policy which is enshrined in an amendment to the Constitution:

The people who say that the Constitution has to be amended in order to end birthright citizenship are invariably the people who think it’s a good idea.

Rick Perry is out of the race. Not that he was ever really in the race, but he is out nonetheless. The Republican clown car made a stop at the Iowa-Iowa State football game on Saturday with Donald Trump, Ran Paul, Marco Rubio and Scott Walker attending a “tailgate.”

Joni was there and said she would not endorse any candidate, which really means that she does not want to pick a losing horse at this early stage. No one wants to be the person who backed Rick Perry. Or Jeb!

My favorite moment from the tailgate in Ames was the greeting offered to Donald Trump versus the one offered to Scott Walker. Trump was greeted like a rock star. Walker was essentially a non-entity as the raucous crowd cheered for Trump. Good luck governor white bread.

It’s not like Scott Walker would have said anything of substance since he takes three positions on every issue in order to appeal to every possible voter. He also does not like the hypothetical question “If you were president…?”

You know, it’s not like he’s running to be the leader of the freaking free world or anything.

Chris Christie is still in the race, but his polling suggests that he may be the next candidate to drop out because no one actually wants to see this man in the Oval Office. Why? Because he is a bully who has no grip on reality. When asked about his own comments on climate change he chose the bully route again and lied through his teeth.

Rick Santorum is apparently still running for the Republican presidential nomination, but he almost has to anymore because it is the only way that he stay relevant in the eyes of the chattering class that stays glued to Fox News for a dozen hours a day. You know, people like your retired uncle who screams about Hillary and the “liberals ruining America.”

Just like that uncle, Santorum does not like diversity in America.

He also does not believe in climate change because he is a moron.

Sarah Palin wants to be Trump’s Secretary of Energy. Would she quit halfway through his first term in order to star in a reality television show and appear on Fox News to vomit out some lukewarm talking points?

The truly saddest moment in the last week was when Mike Huckabee actually said that the precedent set by the Dred Scott decision was still the law of the land in the United States:

Because that’s their phrase, ‘it’s the law of the land. Michael, the Dred Scott decision of 1857 still remains to this day the law of the land which says that black people aren’t fully human. Does anybody still follow the Dred Scott Supreme Court decision?

Like Rick Santorum, Huckabee has a flimsy grasp of how American civics works. Dred Scott is not the law of the land because of the Emancipation Proclamation and the Thirteenth Amendment. I realize that Republicans have a hard time with the Constitution once things get past the Second Amendment, but it would do them some good to actually read the entire document.

However, the lowest point of the week comes from Louisiana. In the effort to defund Planned Parenthood, because Bobby Jindal needs something to hang his hat on other than his actual record, legislators have claimed that there are 2,000 family planning providers willing to provide services in the absence of Planned Parenthood. Great, right? In the list of 2,000 family planning providers were included “ophthalmologists; nursing homes caregivers; dentists; ear, nose, and throat doctors; and even cosmetic surgeons.”

Come to Louisiana where your dentist can prescribe your birth control. Somehow I do not see that making it on to the welcome signs.