After the Bush years, a lot of work lies ahead but glad to see there's some progress happening here. The challenge, as always, will be to monitor the situation and enforce the regulations.
The final target that the Obama administration adopts will have huge implications for the regulations state and local officials will have to set in the coming months to meet the new federal requirements. Power plants and motor vehicles are significant emitters of pollutants such as nitrogen oxides and other chemical compounds, which form ozone when exposed to sunlight, but sources as small as gas lawnmowers could face restrictions depending on what EPA chooses as its ultimate goal.
Smog exposure is linked to an array of heart and respiratory illnesses. It causes burning and inflammation in sensitive tissues, and can harm wilderness areas and farm crops by stunting the growth of trees and plants.
For weeks TPMMuckraker's Zack Roth has been reporting on the increasingly bizarre and outlandish abuses of power by Maricopa County, Arizona's high-profile Joe Arpaio and the evidence of a federal investigation into those abuses. Tonight comes word that[...]
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Fox News contributor Laura Ingraham claimed that "the number one thing [President Obama's] not doing" to fight terrorism "is identifying what the real threat is" and that in his last weekly radio address, Obama cited "a war against violence and hatred," strongly suggesting that Obama has not addressed the threat posed by Al Qaeda. But in the radio address Ingraham cited, Obama repeatedly referred to Al Qaeda as a target of America's efforts abroad, and Obama has repeatedly used the phrase "war on terror."
Ingraham: In his radio address, Obama "said this was a war against violence and hatred." From the January 7 edition of Fox News' The O'Reilly Factor:
INGRAHAM: The number one thing he's not doing, of course, is identifying what the real threat is. He renamed the war on terror, "overseas contingency operations." Janet Napolitano, remember, said that she didn't like calling it the war on terror. She'd prefer to call it manmade disasters, which was disastrous for her to say that. And then, in the radio address on Saturday, Bill, he said this is a war against violence and hatred. Now, first of all, what does that even mean -- a war against violence and hatred? There's a lot of violence in our own country and there's a lot of hatred in our own country. But we're not at war with that. We're at war with a particular type of enemy that frankly is goal-oriented, and their goal is to establish a global Islamic caliphate.
BILL O'REILLY (host): OK, but he did say that today, he did say that, you know, we're at war with Al Qaeda.
INGRAHAM: No, not really.
O'REILLY: And we're going to do whatever it takes to defeat Al Qaeda. Now, I don't believe that for a second.
Obama repeatedly referred to Al Qaeda in radio address. In the radio address Ingraham referred to, Obama cited his inauguration and stated: "I also made it very clear -- our nation is at war against a far-reaching network of violence and hatred, and that we will do whatever it takes to defeat them and defend our country, even as we uphold the values that have always distinguished America among nations." Obama continued:
And make no mistake, that's exactly what we've been doing. It's why I refocused the fight -- bringing to a responsible end the war in Iraq, which had nothing to do with the 9-11 attacks, and dramatically increasing our resources in the region where al Qaeda is actually based, in Afghanistan and Pakistan. It's why I've set a clear and achievable mission -- to disrupt, dismantle and defeat al Qaeda and its extremist allies and prevent their return to either country.
Obama also stated that alleged terrorist Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab "joined an affiliate of al Qaeda, and that this group -- al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula -- trained him, equipped him with those explosives and directed him to attack that plane headed for America." [Presidential Weekly Address, 1/2/10]
Ingraham: Obama did "not really" say "we're at war with Al Qaeda." After O'Reilly stated: "OK, but he did say that today, he did say that, you know, we're at war with Al Qaeda," Ingraham falsely claimed: "No, not really."
Obama: "We are at war against al Qaeda." During his January 7 remarks about the attempted bombing, "Obama stated: "We are at war. We are at war against al Qaeda, a far-reaching network of violence and hatred that attacked us on 9/11, that killed nearly 3,000 innocent people, and that is plotting to strike us again. And we will do whatever it takes to defeat them." [Whitehouse.gov, 1/7/10]
Open thread below...
This evening's Rescue Rangers are Louisiana 1976, Blank Frank, HoosierDeb, Got a Grip, and YatPundit with vcmvo2 as editor.
The diaries up for rescue tonight are:
jotter has today's High Impact Diaries: January 6, 2010.
sardonyx brings tonight's Top Comments: Featured Writers Edition.
Enjoy and please promote your own favorite diaries from the past twenty-four hours in this Open Thread!
Now is the political season of our disappointment. So many in the pundit class feeling let down after the high hopes of a year ago. Me too. You see, I actually believed in -- and still hope for -- the possibility of post-politics. I was looking forward to working together with my conservative policy wonk counterparts on the basis of at least a shared diagnosis of the problems. But as much as I believe in bipartisanship, I also believe in the facts. Blaming the governing party for the partisan tenor of our political discourse is about as accurate as claiming the economy would be better off without the stimulus. So I feel really let down that our politics are still mired in petty bickering instead of rising to the formidable challenges of our times. It was the debate over "declinism" that got me started on this today, particularly the juxtaposition of a Dan Twining post on Shadow Government and an Orville Schell op-ed in the LA Times.
Twining tells America to cheer up and recognize its strengths, and Schell gives a balanced but sobering accounting of our strengths and weaknesses. I have genuine sympathy for a lot of Twining's argument; he's right that we shouldn't lose sight of the United States strong strategic 'fundamentals.' But he gives a cursory look at the negatives, and echoes the ubiquitous talking point that the fiscal deficit is our chief problem:
We have plenty of problems at home, from inadequate infrastructure to an underperforming educational system and, perhaps most disturbingly, a growing burden of national debt that, if not corrected, will increasingly undermine our welfare at home and our leadership abroad.
Strategic about the strengths, off-handed about the challenges. So here's my question to my conservative friends, if you read a piece like Schell's, can you tell me we've spent the last year debating the real challenges to the country's position in today's world?
Title: Little Feat Artist: Fat Man In The Bathtub
video details and more
Philadelphia C&L'er dswagz put in a request for some Little Feat so we thought we would oblige. This is Fat Man In The Bathtub from 1975. If you have another Little Feat song you'd like to share with the class, please feel free to do so in the comments.
Dswagz also brought to our attention that co-founding Little Feat member Ritchie Hayward is in poor health these days. If you would like to find out more and perhaps show him some love, click here.
Where wingnut welfare meets the con![...]
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Link to the Dept. of Health for clinic locations and schedules.
A couple of new polls hit the news today, some further aftershocks from Retirement Tuesday, and some brand-spankin' new campaign news as we hit the "BCS Title" edition of the Wrap....
CT-Sen: Rasmussen Confirms It--Blumenthal Is A Game Changer
When a new Connecticut Senate poll by the crew over at PPP projected a rout for new Democratic Senate candidate Richard Blumenthal over the GOP field, Republicans might have mollified themselves by proclaiming that PPP, after all, is a Democratic firm. Well, that comfort lasted exactly one day, as the team at Rasmussen released their own Connecticut poll today, and showed Blumenthal in a similarly strong position. He leads Rob Simmons by 23 points, according to the GOP-friendly Rasmussen (56-33), while leading Linda McMahon (58-34) and Paul-ite Peter Schiff (60-24) by wider margins.
CO-Gov: Ritter's Exit Leads To Closer Race, Says Rasmussen
Rasmussen, as is their typical prolific nature, also polled the newly open gubernatorial election in Colorado. In what has to be good news for Democrats, Rasmussen shows a considerably closer contest than existed when Republican Scott McInnis was challenging incumbent Democratic Governor Bill Ritter. When paired with Denver Mayor John Hickenlooper, McInnis led by just three points (45-42). Against former Senator and Interior Secretary Ken Salazar, McInnis leads by six points (47-41) according to Rasmussen. This race became a little clearer today, as Salazar demurred from a challenge, and took the intriguing step of endorsing John Hickenlooper, who has not officially entered the race (and, in fact, had announced yesterday that he would defer to Salazar).
IN OTHER NEWS....