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Coal and utilities groups launched a deep-pocketed campaign last month to defeat a November ballot initiative that would raise Michigan’s renewable energy standard for utilities to 25 percent.
The coalition — Clean Affordable Renewable Energy (CARE) for Michigan — has the backing of utilities companies DTE and Consumers Energy, the Detroit and Michigan Chambers of Commerce. Campaign filings show that a coal front group, American Coalition for Clean Coal, is also supporting the campaign against increased renewable energy for the state.
The industry-led group has raised nearly $6 million in its first few months, primarily from the state’s largest utilities companies. By comparison, proponents of the renewable energy standard have raised $2.2 million. MLive provides the details:
Consumers Energy and DTE Energy contributed most of the money. Each gave more than $2.9 million, either directly or through a parent company or subsidiary. DTE also made nearly $200,000 in in-kind contributions and Consumers gave $81,000 in in-kind contributions.
DTE and Consumers both used shareholder dollars to fund the campaign.
Twelve other individuals and companies made donations, including $25,000 from Southfield-based builder Barton Malow and $20,000 from the American Coalition for Clean Coal Electricity in Washington, D.C., according to a campaign finance report filed today.
This campaign is only the tip of the iceberg of what fossil fuel interests are spending this election cycle. ACCCE has a broad $40 million ad campaign this year, spending on ads like ones in May that accuse the Environmental Protection Agency of attempting to raise electricity prices.
Economically, the Michigan initiative makes sense — the costs are much lower than anyone, even utilties, expected and the benefits abound. But the CARE campaign, helped along by none other than big coal, are looking to distort the broad, bipartisan support for renewables.
Cross posted from The Stars Hollow GazetteThis is your morning Open Thread. Pour your favorite beverage and review the past and comment on the future.Find the past "On This Day in History" here. Click on images to enlargeJuly 31 is the 212th day of the[...]
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From the GREAT STATE OF MAINE?
Wow---You Don?t See This Every Day
Now that the Supreme Court battle over Obamacare is behind us, I think people are finally starting to unclench their fists, dry their tears and actually take a peek-a-boo at what's in the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act. Deficiencies aside, there's a lot to like about it, and it was nice yesterday when I opened my dead-tree copy of The Portland Press Herald and found several letters in favor of the progressive vision of healthcare reform, including Obamacare.
Here are a couple notable snips. This is from a medical doctor in Cape Elizabeth, who succinctly lists reasons "Why I support the Affordable Health Care Act", including?
Preventive care: Before the ACA, some immunizations were covered and some were not. Before the ACA, some preventive exams were covered some were not. After the ACA, all immunizations and all preventive exams in all health plans in all 50 states are covered. This, of course, is my favorite thing about the ACA. I get to spend more time preventing heart disease and cancer and less time treating heart disease and cancer.And a reader in Cumberland Foreside delivers a lovely broadside against the sniveling opposition:
Approved...and upheld.Insurance companies pay for care, not advertising and CEO salaries.
Before the ACA, insurance companies spent 40 percent of its premiums for overhead. About 60 percent went to patient care. Note that Angela Braly, CEO of Anthem/WellPoint, made $13 million in 2009.
After the ACA, insurance companies must spend 80 to 85 percent of premiums on patient care. If not, they must pay the customer (you and me) a rebate check. Hopefully, some of that will come from Ms. Braly.
"Get over it."After the Supreme Court voted to stop the 2000 Florida recount, thus awarding George W. Bush the presidency of the United States, the Republican Party had a message for Democrats: "You lost, get over it." [...] Rather than vilify Justice Roberts and take valuable time in the House of Representatives taking a symbolic vote to repeal the new [health care] law, it is time for conservatives and the Republican Party to take their own advice, admit they lost and get over it.Amen. Although what those whiners really "lost" was a status-quo health insurance system that was almost completely rigged against them and their families. I swear, if a Democrat came up with a cure for cancer, Republicans would immediately find reasons to oppose it. These days it's the only thing they know how to do.
Write letters to the editor. They get people talking. And, occasionally, thinking.
Cheers and Jeers starts below the fold... [Swoosh!!] RIGHTNOW! [Gong!!]
I saw a performance by comedian Kathy Griffin over the weekend. It was in San Francisco. As most people know, she’s quite popular with Teh Gays, which made her appearance quite an entertaining affair.
It was an eclectic audience. There was a smattering of suburbanites from the East Bay, some hipsters from SoMa, and lots of leather clad fellows and multi-pierced and tatted up women touching tongues. Several women bought Kathy-labeled kimonos at Griffin’s tchotchke stand and flashed their girlfriends while they snapped photos.
There was a woman in tie-dyed hijab, a couple in white tie and evening gown, and local drag queen favorite Roxy. She arrived like Elizabeth minus Daniel Craig and parachute and posed for dozens of pictures. She looked fabulous in a sparkling evening gown and hair coiffed from green boa feathers. Her shoes were to die for.
Down the aisle, a crowd gathered to have pictures taken with Apple Wunderkind Steve Wozniak. There are clearly many devotees of the Big Bang Theory in The City (always capitalized like this).
I rode with him in an elevator after the show. He was wearing the biggest watch I’ve ever seen on a regular civilian. It had an old fashioned digital display and you could see the “N” size battery that ran it through the glass. He never refused even one of the dozens of photo requests although his companion rolled her eyes like a heat stroke victim at the Abu Dhabi ComicCon. She probably beat him with a motherboard when they got home. He unfailingly smiled sweetly and spoke to each boor, which led me to ask, “Do you ever feel like the Statue of Liberty with all the photos people take of you?”
He smiled and said, “thank you”. I hadn’t felt so proud since I once asked Clarence Clemmons if he wanted my autograph. He declined, but chuckled.
Of course, Griffin was a riot. She scammed on everyone and everything and went overtime telling raunchy stories. Her act is extremely up-to-date, even including several items from earlier in the day. She is either a very fast writer or a very good improviser. However, she does have an advanced case of ADD.
She included dozens of local references and the audience howled with delight. In fact, the audience howled at pretty much everything, including a few mid-performance walkouts by couples who looked like suburban voyagers from the other side of The Bay. The fact they’d come was either a brave act by gay marriage opponents or very timid Westboro protesters.
It was a good time. There was a standing O. The drag queens and leather chappers and suburbanites stood next to each other an applauded together.
That is the beauty of San Francisco. It is a place where parades and world-class marathons have equal displays of costumes and bare asses. The Folsom Street Fair displays a wonderful selection of butt chaps and scrotal rings. No one much minds the naked guy who plays chess at the sidewalk tables or gripes about people of the same sex walking hand in hand or pecking each other on the cheek. Most of the time you have to work very hard to get arrested in San Francisco.
It is still a city that local newspaper hero Herb Caen once dubbed Baghdad by the Bay, but it has its problems. Homelessness is rampant. You can’t swing a dead cat without hitting a screecher or extremely aggressive panhandler. The BART elevators have clogged with human shit. Local politics is a God-awful mess, although that goes back to 1849. The buses run on suggestions rather than timetables. And, fewer and fewer survivors attend the annual commemoration of the 1906 earthquake.
Plus, it’s always foggy and cold as hell.
But, it’s a city to love, a place where a comedian can come and ridicule the imminently ridiculable and people actually laugh instead of answer with a loud HUMBUG! There’s no War on Christmas. They even put up a huge tree each year in Union Square and everyone, gays, the religious, and atheists, come to watch. Fuck you Bill O’Reilly.
One of San Francisco’s early heroes was a crazy man named Emperor Norton. He fancied himself Emperor of the United States and Defender of Mexico, wore a gaudy uniform, and issued his own money – which every establishment in town gladly accepted. His royal proclamations could be a bit iffy, but sometimes also very prescient.
The Emperor was extremely rich before he went round the bend after losing every penny he had speculating on Peruvian rice. He went from a 99.999 percenter to a one-uniform-owning celebrity whom everyone loved. Over taxation or government regulation had nothing to do with it. He bet. He lost. BIG. He displayed the risk-taking that the rich so herald though rob themselves out of today.
But crazy as he was, he had a brave streak a mile wide. He once stepped between sides in a race riot and brought peace. You won’t find the Koch brothers doing much of that, much less doing it in the stylish, braided uniform of the Emperor of California.
Norton the I was a true San Franciscan – extremely fortunate and destitute at the same time, yet he made it work. He didn’t have all his marbles, but created peace when the “sane” could not. San Francisco is an odd place and though it is looked upon by many as the home of “fruits and nuts” it’s also a laboratory for humanity that eventually become commonplace.
Yes, we are still Baghdad by the Bay. We still keep the Saddams away. We simply live and let live.
If only the rest of the country could do more of the same.
It's socialized medicine that covers everyone in the country. And Romney just praised its amazing ability to keep health care costs down."When our health care costs are completely out of control. Do you realize what health care spending is as a percentage of the GDP in Israel? 8 percent. You spend 8 percent of GDP on health care. And you?re a pretty healthy nation," Romney told donors at a...
How many times have you heard a so-called statesman or stateswoman say, ?this is beyond politics.? The implication is that the issue is of such significance that partisan bickering cannot interfere with the ultimate outcome. What I?ve never heard is, ?This is insignificant enough that petty politics is acceptable.? Maybe it does happen, such as [...]Related posts:
Want the scoop on hot races around the country? Get the digest emailed to you each weekday morning. Sign up here.Leading Off:
? MO-Sen: Whoa. Have you seen this new Todd Akin ad yet? It's like he had a serious attack of aphasia. The transcript in case you can't watch (and honestly, your brain might melt if you do):
America was founded on the unique vision that our creator gave us life, the foundation of freedom, liberty, to speak as you choose and own what you earn, and the pursuit of happiness, the call to fully and courageously live the dream God puts in our hearts. Times of crisis, when the dream seemed lost, great patriots turned to God, gave their all and rekindled freedom's flame. This now is our duty and our time.You'll miss Akin's crazy melodramatic delivery (complete with weird emphases and strange cadences) if you don't click through, though. Easily an instant contender for craziest campaign ad of the year.
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Bark Bark Woof Woof - Mitt's past bullying could have real consequences;
BradBlog - Ohio Republicans burying votes? No!
LGF - Obama should have taken out Osama whether it would have worked or not;
LGM - Althouse dumber than a bag of hammers, GOP loves voter purges, the usual;
The Political Carnival - no more tax returns for you!
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