Sunday, November 16, 2014

Shallow Waters Ahead


This is the White Shoal Fresnel lens that sat 20 miles to the west of the Straits of Mackinac for 75 years. Replaced in 1983 with better technology.

Just some stuff while I mess around.

Keystone Left Behind as Canadian Oil Pours Into U.S.
Stopping Keystone would be a great symbolic victory, but keep in mind the oil is coming regardless.

Canadian exports to the Gulf rose 83 percent in the past four years... While Keystone was delayed, other projects increased the flow of crude south. Average U.S. imports of Canadian crude rose to a record 3 million barrels a day in August, a 48 percent increase from five years earlier... “Keystone is kind of old news,” Sandy Fielden, director of energy analytics at Austin, Texas-based consulting company RBN Energy, said Nov. 12 in an e-mail. “Producers have moved on and are looking for new capacity from other pipelines.”

Ryan Budget Debate Takes New Turn After Republican Takeover
They will pass the Ryan budget now. Vouchers for Seniors! will play nicely in 2016, dontyathink?

It advocated about $5 trillion in federal spending cuts over a decade by revamping and constraining the growth of Medicare, and cutting healthcare, food stamps, education and farm spending.... Domestic programs would have been reduced by $791 billion from fiscal 2016 to 2024, while defense spending would be $483 billion more than envisioned under current law.

Obama: ‘No Reason’ for Government Shutdown on Immigration
Partial government shutdown? What would it look like if just DHS was taken offline? And here's to hoping that the President does this sooner rather than later, and that he shoves it so far down their throats that they will have to move it out of their way to tie their shoes. Times up. No more playing around.

Under the option, Congress could block funding for agencies involved in immigration, such as the Department of Homeland Security, so that a presidential veto would lead to a shutdown of only the agencies covered in the bill. The tactic means the final decision about immigration spending in the current fiscal year would fall to the next Congress, with Republicans in control of both chambers.

New Senators Tilt G.O.P. Back Toward Insiders
The Tea Party is now the Establishment. The press still has trouble seeing it. Republicans will strike while they have the chance.

They are a counterintuitive fit with the anti-government, anti-establishment fervor that has energized the Republican Party of late. And their victories seem hard to reconcile with the strong hostility toward government institutions that dominated the recent midterm elections.... But the appeal of the citizen legislator has faded, and voters in this year’s midterm elections sometimes showed little inclination to return political amateurs to office... “The American public is no longer giving people time to turn the ship around. They’re wanting it done in two years. So in two years if we don’t perform, the same kind of wave election is coming back in 2016 except in the opposite direction.”

How the G.O.P. Can Court the Working Class
If Democrats don't spout a Warrenesque rhetoric on the economy, the Republicans will.

Democrats handily won voters with family incomes below $50,000 in this year’s midterm elections, and Republicans handily won those with incomes above $100,000... A new Republican economic approach could still revolve around cutting taxes, but the cuts would no longer be focused on the affluent... But it would be a mistake to dismiss the intra-Republican debate as mere theater. Yes, government programs tend to help middle- and low-income families more than the rich. On the other hand, many government programs don’t work as well as they were meant to. There is certainly a coherent argument for letting the middle class and poor keep more of their income, rather than paying for inefficient government programs.

Hillary Clinton's 'Confrontational' Side Illustrated in New Transcripts
"Hillary was mean!" To which some of us would say, "Oh thank God." Given the performance on messaging from the current WH, asses do need to be kicked. Afterthought: Would a man get this kind of headline? Get #ReadyForDoublestandard

Panetta: There’s no question that she was smart, she was dedicated, she understood the issue and people were a little intimidated by her. There were several meetings where she basically walked in and let everybody have it, very different from what the president would do. If she thought something was going wrong, she’d say it. She was much more confrontational in that sense.

Off to walk in the snow.