Tag Archives: White House

A Setback to Keystone XL Pipeline in Court

A judge has ruled that the Trump Administration has not presented a “reasoned explanation” for continuing the Keystone pipeline project. The administration also “simply discarded” evidence that said the pipeline could have a negative effect on the climate. As a result, the Keystone XL pipeline project has been halted for the time being.

Judge Brian Morris of the United States District Court in Montana blocked the construction of the 1,179 mile pipeline that would push oil from the Canadian oil sands to the Gulf Coast. For the past decade, the project has been halted and fought in the courts.

This decision will lead to a legal battle over climate change and global warming, which the president has described as “fake news.”

President Trump, as he was leaving the White House to travel to France for the 100th anniversary of the end of World War 1, said to reporters, “I think it’s a disgrace,” when asked about the decision regarding the pipeline.

While experts have said that the pipeline would not have an effect on jobs or climate change, people have fought against the pipeline since George W. Bush was in office back in 2008.

Mark Squillace, an expert on environmental law at the University of Colorado Law School, said to the New York Times that the Trump Administration has not done a good job dealing with the findings of the previous administration (Obama). Squillace noted that political stances can change, but one thing that won’t is how you get from “point A to point B.”

While there are plenty of options to appeal, oppressors of the project are celebrating the win, after a decade-long battle against the pipeline, which is mostly completed.

This could be only the beginning of a very long court battle that most likely may reach the Supreme Court.

Trump Clinches the White House

Donald Trump will be the 45th president of the United States of America. In a shocking evening filled with suspense, Trump was able to live up to his lofty goal of debunking the theory of the Democratic “blue wall” consisting of Pennsylvania, Michigan, and Wisconsin and flip them into the Republican’s column. With these three states, plus other traditional swing states, such as North Carolina and Florida, Trump was able to push beyond the 270 electoral votes needed to become President-elect, even though he lost the popular vote.

“Donald Trump will be the 45th president of the United States of America.” Photo from- Slate.com

Many seem to be scratching their heads wondering why and how this ever happened but in reality, we all should have seen this coming. Vice President Joe Biden recently discussed with Chris Matthews on MSNBC about how the Democratic Party had lost touch with the blue-collar voters from around the country. This group, which still makes up a large portion of the electorate, found comfort in President-elect Trump’s policies surrounding the economy, found hope in the prospect of jobs returning and admired his simple understanding of the working-class voter.

As President-Elect Trump begins his transition to power, Democrats face a critical moment in history. With the loss of such a large portion of its base to the GOP, Democrats will face an uphill battle as they try to broaden their appeal and win back one or both chambers of the House of Representatives in 2018. Until then, the party of Reagan holds all branches of the federal government, governorships, and statehouses across the country.


No scientists for EPA, thanks

In recent years some might find themselves in a minority as an American (specifically in a college community) supporting the federal government. A new bill was passed recently by our U.S. House of Representatives stating we should no longer use any ol’ scientist to tell the Environmental Protection Agency what is or isn’t safe. Instead, legislators feel it would be better for everyone if companies or industries referred their choice of scientists to advise the EPA on what would be the safest route regarding the environment and chemicals, etc.

This new legislation, now passed it’s first federal checkpoint, has been under consideration since 2013 and would prevent scientists from voting on advisory panels regarding the safety of any chemical on which they are working. Okay, that doesn’t sound like such a bad thing, right? But what it means is that research scientists would be barred from advising on any topic that might “directly or indirectly involve review and evaluation of their own work.”

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“Legislators feel it would be better for everyone if companies or industries referred their choice of scientists to advise the EPA on what would be the safest route regarding the environment and chemicals, etc.”

So the only people who wouldn’t be allowed to advise the EPA on a particular chemical (if the bill becomes a law) are those who have actually studied its toxicity or effect on the environment and understand its effects.

That sounds rational, right? Those who understand an issue best not being allowed to decide whether it is or isn’t safe?

The bill is part of a package of legislation by the House GOP in order to limit the EPA’s ability to issue new regulations. Their argument centers around EPA transparency and some stipulations of the package include making more of their research public record (including documents that may conflict with patient confidentiality) and reducing the EPA’s ability to update air pollution acts. Because we wouldn’t want them to keep changing those rules every time they got more information on the environment and our effect on it! It’s so annoying to prevent air pollution and create a safer world for our children.

However, according to Cristina Marcos of The Hill, “the White House issued a veto threat on Monday [Nov. 17] against the bill, saying it would ‘negatively affect the appointment of experts and would weaken the scientific independence and integrity of the SAB.'”

Good looking out, White House. Maybe next time the House of Representatives will hear “a bill  designed to prevent qualified, independent scientists from advising  the EPA” and also jump to “hey, this is a really stupid idea.”

Tiresome Tabloids

Tabloids beating old stories to death  Photo from: http://www.servicenewsinc.com

Recently I have noticed the news has gotten out of hand with its offbeat stories. I have noticed public interest waning as newscasters and tabloids beat the same stories to death every day, and it needs to stop.

The Salahi's gate crashed the White House dinner party     Photo from: http://famespy.files.wordpress.com

Has anyone heard about the Tiger Woods car crash? Of course you have. Everyone has to have at least heard that it happened. I personally do not mind Tiger Woods; and I like golf, but I do not care about his car crash, why it happened or that he might have a mistress. All the public really cares to know is that he was in a car crash and he is going to be able to play golf again. What is the use of musing over the cause of his accident or whether or not he is seeing someone other than his wife? Perhaps this might make him a less than perfect role model, but I am sure we can all stand to stay out of his personal life.

Another story that has been irritating the masses is the one about Michaele and Tareq Salahi crashing the White House dinner. Yes, it is disheartening that security can prevent terrorists from attacking the United States, yet they cannot seem to prevent those sneaky socialites from getting into a high-profile dinner. Even so, we do not really care who manages to slip into the party (so long as they are not terrorists), but we definitely care why security did not manage to stop them. What is worse is that this pair is a part of the