Archive for pro-life my ass

Roads and bridges falling down, falling down, falling down...

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LondonBridgew384h202

Sing it with me, now!

Roads and bridges falling down,

Falling down,

Falling down!

Roads and bridges falling down!

Where is Congress?

Face it, America, not only is our infrastructure in a total state of disrepair, but our stellar lawmakers *coughGOPcough* make our roads and bridges look positively reliable.

Via the Los Angeles Times:

America's transportation infrastructure, once an engine of mobility and productivity, has fallen into such disrepair that it's become an economic albatross. Consumers shell out billions of dollars for extra car repairs every year. Insufficient and poorly maintained roads mean costly bottlenecks for businesses, which discourage expansion and hobble American companies competing in the global economy. [...]

A quarter of the country's 147,870 bridges are deficient or obsolete, according to a July report by the White House on infrastructure investment. [...]

[In East Greenwich, south of Providence, Rhode Island]... some of the supporting beams underneath were so beaten down by time and rainwater that they were "paper-thin." [...] All told, about a third of [California's] public roads are in bad shape, compared with 14% nationally.

Public safety, schmublic schmafety.

"Pro-life" my ass.

Here's a little flashback dedicated to Republican Congress members who obstruct infrastructure bills the way Fox obstructs truth in broadcasting:

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Radioactive waste a toxic byproduct of fracking, drilling in N. Dakota

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headdesk radioactive waste fracking

Back in May I wrote, Hey Big Oil "pro-lifers": Fossil fuels may be killing babies! Today's Los Angeles Times has an extensive report about how, in North Dakota, fracking may very well be producing radioactive waste. Again, "pro-lifers," the question is: What do you value more, life or profits?

Did I mention that oil drilling and fracking are producing radioactive waste?

So you know how Republicans despise oversight? Because, freedom! Don'tcha wonder if they ever consider their fellow Americans' freedom to keep breathing? Especially those self-proclaimed right-to-lifers. It's hard to fathom that they are actually this okay with exposure to deadly toxins as long as their corporate gods make a buck.

Did I mention that oil drilling and fracking are producing radioactive waste?

Am I repeating myself? I tend to do that when I'm livid. And appalled. And sickened. But I'm not sickened in a way that will potentially kill me. No, that's reserved for the victims of Fracking, Inc. in North Dakota, the second-largest oil-producing state, right after Texas.

Did I mention that North Dakota doesn't have an environmental protection agency?

Did I mention that New Mexico GOP Gov. Susana Martinez weakened her state's rules on hazardous waste last year?

Did I mention that the EPA is not providing adequate oversight? That would be the Environmental PROTECTION Agency.

Did I mention that my head is throbbing from banging it on my desk?

Via the L.A. Times must-read story:

Nearly 1,000 radioactive filters were found last year at the landfill, part of a growing tide of often toxic waste produced by the state's oil and gas rush. Oil field waste includes drill cuttings — rock and earth that come up a well bore — along with drilling fluids and wastewater laced with chemicals used in fracking.

To many local and tribal officials, environmentalists and some industry managers in North Dakota, the dumping of the socks [filters clotted with radioactive dirt] and the proliferation of other waste shows the government falling short in safeguarding the environment against oil field pollution.

The Environmental Protection Agency decided during the Reagan era to classify oil field waste as not hazardous, exempting it from tight controls and leaving it to be managed by widely varied state laws. Nationally, no one tracks how many millions of tons of waste the fossil fuel boom generates, or where it ends up.

There's that "leaving it to the states" beast raising its ugly head again. Republican-run states have done so well with the Affordable Care Act and voting rights. What could possibly go wrong? Well, for one thing, North Dakota situating "slop pits" of poison over "known aquifers" could be a teeny tiny problem.

Some of the people quoted in the article requested anonymity because they were afraid of repercussions-- like, you know, getting fired-- for trying to point out things like waste management failures, fear of carcinogens in groundwater, exemptions for radioactive elements being classified as hazardous waste, and for putting frackin' lives in danger. Things like that.

And then there's-- ta-daa!-- Congress:

The EPA says it cannot reclassify oil field waste as hazardous without legislative action, which, with the current Congress, is unlikely.

bangheadSee: "Not a skit! Our actual Congress! Gaaa!"

Not a skit, our actual Congress, gaa! Maddow

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Obamacare covers 8-11 million mostly "satisfied" Americans. #BlameObama

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obamacare is winning, anti-obamacare fight

As our own Sherry Hardy pointed out, Regressives Handed Out Emergency Care Death Sentences in North Carolina. GOP-run states have done everything they can to obstruct access to Obamacare from the get-go, including refusing to expand Medicaid coverage. As a result, those self-proclaimed "pro-lifers" are hypocritically and intentionally putting lives at risk. People will die without care.

Fortunately, millions are benefiting from the Affordable Care Act. In fact (hide your ears, Republicans), they even like it!

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More and more Americans are signing up, and the numbers of insured will only grow. Some of our previous posts include reports like these:

In today's Los Angeles Times, there's a piece that reveals customer satisfaction that will drive conservatives to (more) drink:

President Obama's healthcare law has reduced the number of uninsured adults by 8 million to 11 million in its first year, according to three new studies, and the vast majority report satisfaction with their new health plans. [...]

Nationwide, roughly 1 in 4 people who were uninsured last fall now have received coverage, representing a significant first step toward Obamacare's goal of near-universal coverage. [...]

... [M]ore than three-quarters of those who had either enrolled in Medicaid or bought a private insurance plan in the new marketplaces reported that they were either "very" or "somewhat" satisfied with their new coverage.

gasp silent movie smaller

Why, that's positively unAmerican!

Here in my home state of California, the number of uninsured has been cut in half. In half!

And nationally, it's the young 'uns who have been signing up more than anyone else. Remember back when? Remember when there was a big question mark about under-35s signing up? Put that one in a Tupperware, burp it, and seal it.

By the by, 54% said that some or all of their preferred doctors were covered. And 58% said they were better off with Obamacare:

[R]oughly 3 out of 4 Republicans said they were also satisfied.

What

Clearly, with all that positive feedback, the GOP must be seeing the error of their blocky ways, right? I mean, who would deny the very people who trusted you enough to elect you, a longer and healthier life? What self-serving politician would prioritize his own ambitions and petty political games over the health and well-being of families and individuals? What kind of amoral, obsessive, insensitive, merciless sphincter of a person would deny their fellow Americans a lifeline?

[T]he remaining uninsured Americans increasingly are concentrated in states that have declined to expand Medicaid — primarily Southern and Midwestern states with Republican-controlled governments that have been hostile to the new law and, in many cases, have tried to impede its implementation. That political resistance could be a major factor in holding down enrollments in the next couple of years.

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Dear pro-forced birthers: "What causes more abortions than not having contraception?"

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abortion choice pro-forced birthers

Pro-forced birthers don't seem to have much depth, knowledge, or insight when it comes to how babies are made, how contraception works, or what women's health care agencies actually do.

Here's a tweet I just received, along with my reply:

Here is one of many excellent replies:

'Nuff said.

Sadly, "Franky's" tweet is typical of so many I receive from pro-forced birthers about women's reproductive rights, with one exception: He was civil.

With that, here are today's Los Angeles Times letters to the editor, because our voices matter:

Jonah Goldberg's column on the Hobby Lobby case takes as given the distortion of scientific facts at the core of the case. ("Alito agrees: Your birth control is not your boss' business," Op-Ed, June 30)

Overwhelming evidence has shown that emergency contraception does not prevent the implantation of a fertilized egg and does not cause the termination of an existing pregnancy. Therefore, emergency contraception it is not an abortifacient, contrary to what the Supreme Court justices and Goldberg contend.

Such uncritical endorsements of distorted science are the source of much misinformation, as I have discovered in my own research on barriers to access to emergency contraception. It is sad that the highest court in the nation has propagated this false belief and created another barrier for access to safe, effective and evidenced-based pregnancy prevention.

Tracey Wilkinson, MD, Los Angeles

..

Goldberg compares requiring employers to provide contraceptive health insurance to their employees to hypothetically requiring these companies to pay for their employees to attend a "Game of Thrones" convention.

Goldberg ignores the fact that every time a couple engages in unprotected intercourse, they are putting the woman's life at risk. According to a study published in the medical journal the Lancet, 18.5 women died in childbirth for every 100,000 live births in the U.S. in 2013.

The intimate relations between couples are no mere game. The ability to obtain and use contraceptives is a matter at the heart of family life.

Goldberg and the five men who make up the U.S. Supreme Court majority in the recent Hobby Lobby case have shown the world that they place little value on the lives of women.

Eleanor Egan, Costa Mesa

..

I suspect that because Hobby Lobby is so deeply religious, it would not support a woman's right to have an abortion. What causes more abortions than not having contraception?

Sarah Maze, Orange

Via .ecobumperstickers.com

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Study: Young adults healthier after passage of #Obamacare

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obamacare is winning, anti-obamacare fight

Young adults and the Affordable Care Act are very compatible, despite all the Repeal Obamacare fanatics in the GOP-run House of Representatives. The Los Angeles Times has the story:

Expanding the number of young adults with health insurance appears to have improved their health and saved them money, according to a new study that is among the first to measure the effect of the healthcare law that President Obama signed four years ago.

Starting in 2010, the Affordable Care Act allowed adults under age 26 to remain on their parents’ health plans, the first coverage expansion to take effect under the law.

Previous surveys have indicated that this provision, which remains among the law’s most popular, allowed millions of young adults to get health insurance over the last several years.

The new study, published in the Journal of the American Medical Assn., suggests the coverage expansion also measurably increased the number of young adults who reported that they are in excellent physical and mental health.

What?! Why, that's crazy! Wasn't it the GOP that claimed Obamacare would destroy this country and kill everyone in it?

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Additionally, per the article, researchers discovered that there was a "significant drop in how much young people were paying out of pocket for their medical care after the law went into effect."

Say it with me: Another GOP talking point bites the dust. And for you trolls out there who have literacy issues, here it is in pictures:

another talking point bites the dust

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Surge in insured CA students defies #Obamacare concerns

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obamacare is winning, insured students surge

Two words, GOP: Neener nanner. All those "repeal Obamacare" efforts in the House of Representatives are becoming more and more laughable as good news stories continue to emerge about Affordable Care Act sign-ups. Here in my home state of California, there has been a surge (a word John McCain and his "pro-life" buddies seem to covet when it comes to killing people, but not when it comes to saving lives here at home) in insured students.

Read it and weep, obstructionists, trolls, and Obama Derangement Syndrome sufferers. And while you're at it, take a gander at the story below this one, because it, too will annoy the hell out of you. First, the insured student "surge," via the L.A. Times:

New data show the number of students without health insurance on California State University campuses dropped by 60% after health insurance enrollment, defying concerns that not enough young people would sign up for health insurance. [...]

According to a poll released Thursday, at the 15 largest CSU campuses, between 25% and 30% of students were uninsured before enrollment began, and 10% were uninsured after. The drop accounts for 60,000 students who became insured, and illustrates the late surge of young people who signed up for policies. [...]

Walter Zelman, chair of the Cal State L.A. Public Health Department and director of the project, said that he believes the 10% uninsured rate among the students is "virtually unheard of in California." He pointed out that the 60% drop in the number of uninsured CSU students is vastly higher than the 26% reduction in the number of uninsured nationwide that was reported by a Gallup poll this month.

Twenty-three-year-old Natasha Buranasombati signed up through Covered California, and observed that "the issue is not invincibility, it's affordability." Which brings me to article numero dos from the L.A. Times:

In the strongest indication yet where Obamacare rates are headed, industry giant Anthem Blue Cross said its California premiums for individual coverage will increase less than 10% on average next year. [...]

The outcome in California will be closely watched because the state is a key barometer for the health overhaul nationwide.

Another GOP talking point bites the dust.

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Hey Big Oil "pro-lifers": Fossil fuels may be killing babies!

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we cannot drink the water big oil frackingScreen grab from "Fracking hurts Californians, Governor Brown" video below.

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Melissa Harris-Perry took a disturbing look at a mysterious spike in infant deaths in Utah that could very well be linked to air pollution from the oil and gas industry. Yet, we haven't heard a peep about Big Oil possibly killing newborns from those very same "pro-lifers" who hypocritically devote themselves to "saving babies."

And while we're on the topic of Big Oil killing living things, look how their self-serving, corporate activities are contributing to land loss along the Louisiana Gulf Coast:

louisiana coastline destroyed by big oil

The Los Angeles Times has the story:

For decades, oil and gas companies cut canals through fragile wetlands with the state's approval to haul equipment and install pipelines. But scientists say the dredging let salt water flow in, killing vegetation that kept the land from eroding.

Without the buffer of these marshes and barrier islands, Louisiana's many low-lying coastal communities — and its biggest city — now have little natural protection from storm surges created by hurricanes. ... Last summer, the independent board that oversees flood protection for New Orleans decided that oil and gas companies should pay their share. In a move that roiled a state where the energy industry is the economic foundation, the board voted unanimously to sue all 97 companies operating in the state for unspecified damages. [...]

Over the next 50 years, the state is expected to lose as much land as it did in the last 80. The disappearance of the coast has left the state vulnerable to flooding from hurricanes, but it also affects the whole country. Nearly 90% of all offshore U.S. oil and gas production occurs off the state's coast, and the industry's infrastructure is stitched into the shoreline. The region is a hub for shipping and fisheries. The marshes attract millions of migratory birds annually.

Of course, it goes without saying that Gov. Bobby Jindal would do anything to save his state-- and the entire nation-- from environmental disaster... right?

Republican Gov. Bobby Jindal and key legislators denounced the litigation, initiating legislation that would quash the lawsuits and undo post-Hurricane Katrina reforms aimed at removing politics from flood control. Last month, the state Senate passed a bill that would allow Jindal to kill the New Orleans lawsuit by replacing the lawyers who are handling it.

Oops. My bad.

And while we're still on the topic of how fossil fuels are slowly snuffing life as we know it, remember this? Frackers set sights on largest oil shale reservoir in US... near CA's San Andreas fault. Hey, me too! Well guess what, there was an L.A. Times sequel: "U.S. officials cut estimate of recoverable Monterey Shale oil by 96%."

Families are already suffering everywhere, and there's more where that came from.

"What is all that money worth if there will be no future generations?"

Now let's take a look at today's Los Angeles Times letters to the editor responses to those reports, because our voices matter:

Gov. Jerry Brown has displayed cognitive dissonance by supporting both climate change mitigation and fracking in California.

Fracking not only perpetuates our dependency on fossil fuels, it also releases methane all along the supply chain, which is a greenhouse gas less prevalent in the atmosphere than carbon dioxide but roughly 30 times more potent as a heat-trapping gas.

Brown is trying to be slick like the streets of Atwater Village after the 10,000-gallon oil spill last week by appealing to both sides of the aisle. But like those streets, he is finding himself mired in a sticky situation, where he will need to fully commit to a side.

Californians are noticing that the governor's position on the issue of climate change is about as stable as the ground upon which Big Oil is fracking.

Amanda Grossi

Los Angeles

The writer is a field manager for Environment California.

***

I don't know why companies are even looking for oil anymore. What oil is left will be used up at some point. Meanwhile, extracting it gets more costly, and that doesn't include the hidden costs of the damage to the environment, including its contribution to global warming.

The sun produces energy; it has done so for billions of years, and when it stops, so will our planet. We should not build another house without solar panels. There should also be small wind turbines for our home patios that can help out when it is windy.

We don't need oil, and we really don't need shale oil.

Jenny Wilder

Apple Valley

Bonus insanity: House Votes To Deny Climate Science And Ties Pentagon’s Hands On Climate Change.

Via .ecobumperstickers.com

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